Archive for the ‘Economics’ Category

What is going on?

Great Illinois Stone with State MapThat is the question The Great Illinois Stone has for East Dundee residents, Village officials, and Otto.

The answers will determine on which side the Stone will fall.

Speaking of sides … every story has two sides … much like the Stone itself.

The Stone is most stable when it can be on one side or the other.

When the Stone is in its edge (yes it can happen in unsettling situations) it could fall one way or the other.

So the question is …

What’s going on in East Dundee?

There have been great improvement in the infrastructure of East Dundee in recent years.

Residents have seen derelict buildings torn down, old building remodeled, new buildings constructed, roads improved … and the Village has show that there is a plan to revitalize the community.

The Village has a Plan.

During that time Otto has been identified by signs and news reports as a key partner in that effort.

It appears that much of the work has been supported … even heavily funded by … Otto.

Otto has been a big supporter.

The Great Illinois Stone noticed Otto several years ago and liked what it saw.

The Village has been through some rough times.

Otto has probably had some tough times, too.

Hasn’t everyone?

Things appear to be getting better.

Now it seems …

There is a disturbance in the force.

The Great Illinois Stone has learned of a letter recently delivered to East Dundee area residents.  The letter was from Otto … actually Tom Roeser … Otto Engineering’s president.  No less than the Chicago Tribune ran a story about the issue.

Tom says that the leaders of the Village “are not being good stewards of our community.”

Wouldn’t you like to know the truth?

The Great Illinois Stone has also endorsed the development efforts of the Village.

It is also known that politics, personal agendas, and petty feuds have caused East Dundee … and the world at large … to make decisions detrimental to the community our leaders were elected to serve.

A source in Village administration tells the Stone that Mr. Roeser knew the Village would be responding and on what day, but generated a news story and sent the letter anyway.

Is there a solution that is satisfactory to all parties?

Maybe this is a simple misunderstanding.  But … that’s doubtful.

Could be it is all about miscommunication or unclear expectations.

The Stone would like to see everybody getting along.


The Great Illinois Stone would like to hear both sides of the story.

The Great Illinois Stone

Your comments are welcome!


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Everything You Have Been Told

About Economics …

Is a LIE!

Watch this video. Listen to David Suzuki explain.

Companies that cut down our trees, use our water, dig materials out of the earth, terraform the landscape need to understand that all those assets belong to you and me and the generations that follow.

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Preparation Meets Opportunity Brewing Up Something Special

Brickside Brewery – Grand Opening – August 18, 2012

The idea for a brewery in Copper Harbor got its start almost eight years ago, and the brewery’s founder wasn’t drinking beer at that time.

The way I hear it … Brickside Brewery resulted from a Christmas present that sat in storage for almost a year.

The Brickside’s founder, Jason, and his wife, received a starter brewing kit as a gift from a sister-in-law.  As the Holidays approched the following year, Jason decided to brew up a batch.

As Jason says, “almost everyone who brews a few batches of beer daydreams … Wouldn’t it be great to start a brewing business!”

His opportunity arose when a building in Copper Harbor changed hands and became available.

I will tell more of the business development story in a future blog posting.

For now … Think about enjoying a Brickside Brew. Brewing began in June. The Grand Opening Celebration is this upcoming weekend.

When you visit Brickside Brewery, you will find the menu and catalog right behind the bar.

Uncertain?  Try a sampler.  A good taste of four different brews.

Brickside Brewery on tap in Copper Harbor

A Weiss Bier homage to Grandpa.

Consider buying a Brickside T-shirt

Brickside Brewery

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Thought Patterns 2011 Blog Topic Summary

If you could read minds, success in communicating your ideas and plans effectively … to friends, family, customers, business associates, and employees … would be much easier to attain.

Think about it.

If you know how other people think,

you can be

(a) very well-informed

(b) very influential

or (c) both.

Share Your Thoughts

Since this is intended to be a forum for the exchange and exploration of ideas, your feedback is encouraged.  Comments on content, topic suggestions, and contributions of your ideas are invited.

Blog Structure

  • HomeA Great Place to Start
  • AboutExploring How People Think & How Ideas Take Hold
  • PhotographyA Great Way to Convey Thoughts
  • Somebody SaidSome Things are Worth Repeating
  • LinksGood Ideas & Resources to Share

INTRODUCTIONCustomer Feedback

  • Hello world!  … Looking Forward to Sharing Ideas With You


CREATIVE PEOPLEPainting of Robots by Cesare Tanassi


PHOTOGRAPHYSanta on Miami's North Beach





URBAN LEGENDThe Great Illinois Stone

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Santa on Miami's North Beach

It’s Christmas Eve

How do you feel?

We spotted Santa walking in Miami’s North Beach area and wondered what’s on his mind.

It is hard to determine Santa’s mood.

Is his gaze downcast to be sure of his foot placement or is he feeling down?

Is the cane critical to his stability or is it more like a walking stick?

Is he looking forward to his job this evening or has the sleigh ride become a drag?

Is he simply enjoying the Miami sunshine before his long ride tonight?

We wish Santa and all of you a very Merry Christmas

It could be that Santa is thinking about the many people who aren’t going to experience much “Merry” in their Christmas or “Happy” in their Holidays. The economic downturn … Recession for some; Depression for way too many … has drained merriment from many occasions and sucked happiness out of many lives. If you are unemployed or underemployed, it’s likely there a fewer gifts under your tree … if you could afford a tree.

If your employer has shut down or moved jobs overseas and you are held hostage by a home that won’t sell in this stagnant housing market, you can’t feel too positive about your ability to pursue new opportunities. How many people are not in the home they had last Christmas, because their resources have been drained away?

Santa is going to see a lot of this tonight.

We do have hope for the New Year.

Much of that hope is endangered, though, by politicians more concerned about their re-election bid than the needs of the Americans they were elected to serve.

… but hope is endangered.

Hope is also endangered by businesses … sitting on record amounts of cash … but too timid to invest in new ideas, new products, or new growth initiatives that would put more people to work … giving more consumers the ability and confidence to consume.

We hope Santa brings you a bit of cheer tonight.

… and leaves every politician with a sense of “Goodwill to All”.

Our leadership and the people with control of money that could be invested in a brighter future need to understand they have a lot in common with Santa Claus. He exists because we believe in him.  They have power and money because we support them … voting for politicians … buying what businesses sell.

If politicians fail us, they won’t get votes.

If businesses won’t employ us, who will “consume” their products?

OK … That’s one approach.  Here is another

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The Great Illinois Stone
The Great Illinois Stone

What’s Up With Otto?

Early on a recent Sunday morning The Great Illinois Stone was spotted along the Fox River in Carpentersville near a visitor parking space on the OTTO Engineering property. It would seem the spirits that control appearances of The Great Illinois Stone may approve of OTTO’s contributions to its community.

If you are familiar with the Dundee-Carpentersville area, you have probably noticed the beautifully restored factory buildings on both sides of the Fox River along Main Street in Carpentersville.

You may not know that OTTO has also refurbished many of the houses in what’s called the Old Town area of Carpentersville. OTTO was instrumental in forming the Old Town Association to encourage development of properties in the area. OTTO is also supporting efforts to refurbish homes in another “gateway” section of Carpentersville near highway 68.

The Great Illinois Stone Visits OTTO EngineeringOTTO Engineering is celebrating 50 years of operation, and has been at its current location for over forty years.  Talk to local residents who are in their seventies and eighties and they can tell you stories about when those buildings were operated by The Illinois Iron and Bolt Co.

In June of this year Carpentersville dedicated the entire month to OTTO Engineering and its role in the community.

We wonder if The Great Illinois Stone has visited OTTO because of the mixed reaction from the community.

You may not agree with every political inclination of the Roeser family that owns OTTO. Altruisim may not be what comes to mind when you hear people talk about OTTO’s efforts to improve the Old Town area, but you should appreciate the benefits of their contributions to the community.

Of course OTTO benefits by investing in the community … duh! So what!

There is nothing wrong with doing well … while doing good.

Besides … when a company is doing well, it can more easily afford to do good.

Maybe the appearance of The Great Illinois Stone is a statement about the need to work together to accomplish things that are beneficial to a larger group. Look at the political and legislative grid-lock that has pushed so many states and our nation to the brink of destruction.

What’s wrong with a compromise that serves the greater good?

“Enlightened Self-Interest” is one of the most effective motivators and unifying forces for taking action that can help you and your community … however you define your community.  More people should subscribe to this philosophy.

What do you know about The Great Illinois Stone?

To learn what we know about The Great Illinois Stone
visit our earlier article here.

We welcome your thoughts about the myth, mystery, nature,
purpose and origin of The Great Illinois Stone.

So far … ’tis a mystery.

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Our thanks to all Veterans!
Our Flag is still flying!


I spotted this flag flying over a quiet community baseball field this morning. 

It’s tattered appearance brought to mind the Star Spangled Banner and images I recall associated with the inital inspiration for Francis Scott Key or memories I have of the movies and community events when the song has been played and sung.   

O! say can you see by the dawn’s early light,

What so proudly we hailed at the twilight’s last gleaming,

Whose broad stripes and bright stars through the perilous fight,

O’er the ramparts we watched, were so gallantly streaming.

And the rockets’ red glare, the bombs bursting in air,

Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there;

O! say does that star-spangled banner yet wave,

O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

Is the American flag still waving?  Yes!

Do we appreciate the dedication and sacrifices of people who have kept us free?  Absolutely!

We got through the election.  Our flag is still flying, but it is hard to feel confident that the right changes have taken place.

Did the recent political campaigns raise your blood pressure?

Did the attack-the-opponent strategy make you tired?  sad? angry? frustrated?
Democrats … once known as a party of inclusion … can’t develop a unified message to its members or the Nation.
Republicans … under the guise of fiscal conservatism … strangle any legislative efforts to help the vicitims of the their laissez-faire economics.
Every politician seems to be more concerned about their own interests and those of their friends (duh, big surprise) rather than being willing to work together to get our country back on solid footing. 
How will these approaches heal and protect the USA? 
On top of that, we have”The Party of No” trying to paint more states red and many of the voters responsible for the blue and purple states failing to show up at the mid-term elections.
How does “leaving the decision to others” preserve our democracy?
We still face a lot of serious issues.

We still have 2 Wars … and others seem to be pending.

How do we protect the USA and support our allies without bankrupting the country?
Unemployment remains at an incredibly high level.
What can be done to create jobs?

Foreclosures and an underemployed construction industry showcase terrible weaknesses in our economic condition.

Over-worked employees who have survived as friends and co-workers have been laid off wonder when the pressure will be reduced.

Do you wonder why America has become so tattered?
In spite of, or because of all these issues, I’m thankful to our Veterans and their families for making sure we can say each morning “that our flag was still there.”

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