My thoughts on the post-election nightmare

I am so sick and tired of the combative, ugly rhetoric that far-left and far-right media organizations have deployed on multiple avenues of communication.

I’m sick and tired of the divisiveness, the name-calling, the propaganda-spewing, all of it.

While it’s clear that people don’t agree with each other, that doesn’t mean we have to devolve into elementary school-level pettiness in our arguments. What has happened to the voice of reason? So many legitimate issues have become de-legitimized by ad hominem attacks and propaganda. They fail to address the real issue at hand. Not one issue goes by today without being addressed by these one-sided, agenda-bearing media organizations through tirades of anger. Emotion and opinions, not facts, guide these publications.

My frustration also extends to publications that publish biased videos with facts that are cherry-picked to support the publication’s agenda. I’m not going to mention any names because I’m sure people will start arguing with me below, saying I’m wrong. I find whichever news source that doesn’t give me a heart attack is the one that I watch nowadays. But I wish that the people who use these news outlets would stop using them.

We cannot afford to add any fuel to the flame. We must return to middle ground so we can actually have a civilized discussion for the first time since the election. It’s a pipe dream right now, but hopefully we can work towards this goal.

Why MyWikis will no longer interview prospective employees

This post applies more to my personal life than the events of my company, so I’ve decided to write about it here on my personal blog. That being said, according to the title of this post, it has led to changes within my company.

You may think that I spend every single living hour outside of academics on MyWikis. This simply isn’t the case. Aside from MyWikis, I have plenty of things to do. (To be honest, I originally was  extremely passionate about MyWikis’ mission, which is why I founded the company of course, but five years puts a heavy toll on your passion. Today, I’m not as fired up about MyWikis as I was five years ago. And that’s okay! So I spend it somewhere else.) Two days ago, I started up a Bukkit server. Recently, since I’m a student too, I’ve been studying for some upcoming tests. I’ve been going to college admission information sessions too, so I can get an inside scoop on college admissions. And yes, college essays. Plus, did I mention I’m doing paid summer research for ten weeks at UNT? Yeah, my plate is loaded. I’ll admit to that.

I also founded the TAMS Cybersecurity Association, so I have lots of work to do in order to prepare this club for the upcoming fall semester. The reason I decided to found it was because of a lack of focus on cybersecurity-related topics in the TAMS community. Furthermore, being rejected from every single club and organization’s officer positions to which I applied resulted in my freedom to pursue something else. Since I wasn’t bound to an existing club, I decided to bring unfulfilled passions to share with everyone at TAMS. But from my experiences of being rejected, I was humiliated by the gruelling interview process. The questions being asked, as well as the surprise tasks that we were asked to perform, resulted in this said humiliation. I really had to sell my soul for these interviews, to show my passion for these clubs (and yes, they were true passions). Until they said, “nope, we don’t think you’re good enough compared to others.” Awkward.

Did you see something wrong with the fact that I was setting up a Minecraft server? Yeah, I’m bored. Let’s be honest. I’m not exactly pleased with the idea of studying for a test, then going to do research for 10 weeks, right after I finished a gruelling semester. My company? I love it, but I can’t spend all day on it at this point. I mean, I guess I could, but it’s not as good as—working on a fresh idea that has potential.

So I called up some of my friends who were working on a project that was just that. Previously, I worked with one of them on an open source project. It no longer exists today as a service, but I didn’t regret a second of developing it. And it was so. much. fun! My expectation was that I could hop on as a part-time contributor. These friends of mine gave me a formal interview at Starbucks, akin to the extremely triggering experiences I had at TAMS club officer interviews. Okayy… I knew the route this was going, with my luck. Sure enough, the interview process turned out to be the final nail in the coffin instead of the cherry on top.

In case you don’t know how hurt I was by the overall TAMS officer selection process, below is an excerpt I’ve taken from that article.

Through all of the assistance and leadership that I have shown this year, I have been stabbed in the back by every opportunity. Nothing seems to matter anymore. Apparently, I am an annoying, unqualified, “blacklisted” student that nobody likes and nobody wants to be a leader… Whenever I compare TAMS to the outside world, I see how I can make a true difference in real life, where my assistance is not only appreciated, it’s rewarded. I consistently contribute my time with a non-profit, and unlike TAMS clubs, they don’t treat me as if I were utter shit.

I’ve since come to the realization that the interviews given for TAMS and this opportunity to contribute to a project (free of salary) were humiliating. To be exact, I realized this twice: when I left Starbucks and when I received the email that I was not welcome to help because of my preexisting commitments.

Interviews are humiliating.

It felt like an initiation where I was asked to humiliate myself. For fraternities, that’s called hazing. I don’t know what it’s called in this case.

When you open up, when you are interrogated, when you are asked to share things too personal and too meaningful to you, and then to see them all dusted away as if they were nothing, you are humiliated.

Furthermore, friends don’t conduct formal interviews with each other. These things are mutually exclusive. Or so I thought? When I asked friends to join my company and help out (and paid them—remember I didn’t ask for a single cent from this new venture), I never put them through a formal interview process. Sure, I knew them, but I didn’t even question their true proficiency in what’s required to work in my company, and they ended up doing their job very well. I have now realized that I don’t need to interview someone to get a good sense of how suitable they are for a job.

Realizing how destructive and dehumanizing interviews have been, I have decided to completely eliminate any form of interviewing for MyWikis jobs. That’s right. Starting now, I am not going to even ask for “your worst quality and your best quality,” which is an absolutely bullshit question. I don’t give a crap about that. Everyone has them; no need to embarrass ourselves. I do know, however, that someone will do a good job if they’re qualified. And I’ll figure that out through an objective, fact-based simulation of how someone handles their job and communicates with others. Oh, and I’m not going to have people humiliated by having “surprises.” Applicants will have ample time to prepare before they enter the simulation. And that’ll be their training if they are hired, which they will, because they will be capable.

One last thing I forgot to mention: keeping talent on retainer means giving flexible work times, which is exactly my company’s policy on work. Matthew McConaughey might be a professor at UT Austin, but he isn’t working there full time. Yet UT respects his talents and gives him free reign over how he manages his time while bettering his students and the community overall.

See here for an update to our recent job posting:

In order to determine fit within our current company, you will be asked to complete a MyWikis-administered simulation where you will collaborate with others.

As a result of our recently-implemented No Interview Policy, we will not interview you for this job.

I am extremely serious and conscious about how people are treated, even if I’m not able to develop a harassment-fighting AI. As I once said in a TAMS seminar, humanity cannot be automated. That’s why I place more emphasis on ways humans can improve their behavior and attention to emotion, not just how a machine can do so in a regulated way.

I hope the elimination of any form of formal interviewing in the MyWikis job application process will reduce humiliation—a form of harassment. Destiny’s ironic.

School meal shaming

Every day, after a morning of learning, students are eager to relax, eat, and chat with their friends. The last thing that needs to happen is for their warm, comforting plate of food to be tossed in the trash because their accounts were depleted of money—at absolutely no fault of their own. For some students, this experience can be humiliating and traumatizing, especially because this wasn’t their fault and they’re being punished for it.

Once a student receives their meal in the serving line, they expect the food to be theirs after they get done paying for it. And rightfully so; who would expect their food to be thrown away every single day? Nobody. Yet, when one day, money inevitably runs out in an account, the nightmare becomes reality. What was supposed to be theirs is now yanked away and turned into food for swarms of buzzards. In other words, their food is effectively stolen from them in front of others, and there’s nothing kids can do about it. Even though they didn’t pay for their food yet, it was supposed to be theirs. If you snatched the last $50 4K TV at Walmart on Black Friday but then someone else took it before you paid for it, wouldn’t you be pissed? In fact, many people get into fights over this. Search it up on YouTube. Yet kids aren’t going to fight with the lunch servers because they’re weak and powerless to appeal. This leads to them being traumatized after receiving an “alternative meal.”

What a tragedy. Remember that the financial responsibility of a student’s food should be on the parent. Any parents who can’t pay for their child’s meals will usually put their kids on free/reduced cost meals. So, meal “shaming” really only happens for those kids who don’t qualify for free/reduced meals, meaning their parents CAN pay, but they probably forgot to. And it’s not the parents who are shamed for forgetting to pay for their child’s meal; it’s the child.

At the same time, schools try their best to remind the parents to pay. Schools usually handle food through a for-profit corporation, and it is their right to make their money back. If one of their customers can’t pay, the corporation can’t be expected to send them free food. Yet, this is kids who don’t even earn any money we’re talking about. What ends up happening is that the student is caught up between the school and the parent, leading their hot meal to be thrown away and being humiliated instead of their parents being reminded. And I bet if some parents saw their kid’s meal being thrown away, they’d kick the lunch servers’ asses. Clearly, if kids are being treated like crap just because their parents aren’t there, this establishes that humiliation is NOT an acceptable way to “remind” parents to refill their child’s bank account.

Not to mention that if these for-profit corporations are trying to earn as much money as possible, then how on earth is throwing away food economical? I know they can’t serve this food again due to health regulations, but it boggles my mind why they can’t let these kids keep their meals. Say a student doesn’t get their lunch account topped up for many consecutive days. Still more money is lost from throwing away the unbuyable meal and giving a replacement meal than simply allowing a child to keep their meal. Not to mention how environmentally unfriendly and wasteful this practice is. And guess what? Parents still have to back-pay for all the alternative meals. Why not just let them back-pay for a regular meal?

One proposed solution I heard from someone else: Let the kids find out if they’re getting a hot meal or not BEFORE they go into the lunch line, not knowing if they will have enough money or not. That way, their food will not be taken away from them and they will still be reminded to tell their parents to add money to their lunch account. Personally, I still don’t like the fact that an alternative meal is given. This alternative meal is one of the catalysts for shaming. It needs to go. Let the children keep their meal, for goodness sake. They’re children. I hope that’s enough said to end school meal shaming.

Why college isn’t for everyone

Today, college is promoted by high schools as the panacea to the deficiencies of recent high school graduates (or grad-to-be’s). Don’t know what to do? Go to college. However, this fallacious precedent has dangerously misled many students into doing something that does not develop the skills they will need in the workplace. In some cases, several years of one’s life and hundreds of thousands of dollars could be wasted if college does not turn out to be what that person needed to advance their career.

Perhaps two hundred years ago, only very few people—the brightest intellectuals—would attend college. This is the way it was meant to be. College is an academic environment devoted to studying and research. Today, however, this core mission is blurred by frat parties and various students attending college “just because.” This shift of focus from academia to spring break at Panama City Beach has caused students to waste several years of life somewhere they don’t want to be, accumulating large piles of student loans in the meantime.

While the encouragement for more students to pursue what they want to learn and go to college regardless of conditions seem beneficial, and they can be very beneficial to those who are truly interested in the experiences of academia, there are also many students who would be better served at a technical school.

Before I dive in to better serving technical careers, I do want to emphasize that certain people are better suited to a liberal arts education, such as one that includes the humanities, social sciences, natural/pure sciences, and applied sciences, than to a technical careers education.

But does an aspiring carpenter necessarily need to know how to analyze the Iliad? Not really. What they do need to know is how to work with wood, which isn’t something that colleges offer and perhaps something that most high schools don’t allow students to focus the majority of their time working on.

In fact, go into any high school today and try to find posters in the hallways on how to become a welder, or a carpenter, or a mechanic. A policeman, a fireman, a paramedic. You won’t find anything of the sort. Meanwhile, hallways will be plastered with SAT and ACT sign-up dates. This leads to many high school students knowing when the next SAT is and going to a typical local college somewhere, instead of knowing when to apply for culinary school or learning how to sautée a filet mignon perfectly.

In Germany, specialization starts before our high schools would even start. Students are sent to whichever school they are most well suited for. Some people are just going to become great mechanics. But teaching them high school biology isn’t going to help them. In fact, they shouldn’t even be going to college, because you won’t find a single mechanic class, let alone major, in any doctoral-granting four-year university, a place where many undecided adults end up if they decide to go to college. Mechanics need to focus on how to fix cars, and where better to learn that than a specialized technical school? Yet, these undecided adults default to going to college, which doesn’t offer anything relevant for them.

Unfortunately, most of our public high schools only allow for students to dip their feet in the water for these technical jobs. Even then, CTE classes are considered “electives,” meaning want-to-be chefs will have to gruel through The Great Gatsby and using the law of sines to calculate the distance between the top of a cell tower and two people standing next to them before they can concentrate on perfecting their filet mignons. These things are great to know… for other people. But for these people, it’s wrong!

We should start promoting and teaching technical education more prominently to those who want to go into skilled work instead of condemning them to find the area under a curve. In fact, I don’t even think most English majors do that.

And the most important thing that everybody should learn: life skills. Regardless of whether someone should go to college, a technical school, or simply find a job, they all need to learn how to manage money, how to raise a family, how to cook, how to maintain houses and cars, etc. Have I been taught this? Nope, because I didn’t have the time to take a family and consumer science class (formerly known as home economics).

We need to change our priorities in the educational system. Let’s stop sending everyone to college. I know it sounds good to educate everyone, but after high school, there’s no need to educate everyone with the same “core curriculum” anymore. To start, send more people to community college. Better yet, send them to specialty technical schools instead of community college. Let them learn what they need to know. Let college students learn family and consumer sciences so we aren’t stuck with cooking ramen in our dorms. And no, this doesn’t mean supporting Betsy DeVos’s “school choice,” because that’s the wrong kind of school choice that students should be able to make. Lead students to their personal path—let them take the road less travelled.

McKinney ISD Salary Records 2016-2017

Under the Texas Public Information Act, I requested McKinney Independent School District’s salary records of its employees. The data includes hire date, gender, annual salary, location, and job description.

I have uploaded an unmodified version of the file that McKinney ISD sent me, except for the file name. It is available as an Excel spreadsheet. Please let me know if you need it in another format by contacting me through my email address,

My philosophy behind social interactions

Social interactions form a major backbone of our lives. Without them, we (humans) would go crazy, my introverted self included. While they are necessary, they can bruise or hurt others, like myself, easily. Ever since I was young, I have always shrunken into a little ball, like a turtle without a shell, thanks to others’ way of treating me. I was a serious, innocent young child put into a daycare full of careless, rowdy children whose actions amounted to horseplay between them, but bullying for me. “Telling the teacher” seemed to be an effective countermeasure… until the teachers were unable to handle the bullies. Did my parents care? I’m sure they tried to do many things to help me, but to them (and everybody else), I seemed to be too sensitive. I would have liked to see my bullies disciplined, but that would cause trouble among the bullies and the daycare administration, and that was apparently worse than me being bullied. It is the dilemma between “sucking it up” and being scarred for life or going through immense trouble to rectify sore points.

I don’t know if there was an intentional ploy orchestrated by my parents to give me an early exposure to bullying, because it sure seemed like I needed this dagger in my heart. (I would get it sooner or later; it is a part of life.) Either way, the effect stands before you today. My brain, while recently starting to move towards rationality (as my frontal cortex (?) matures), finds it paramount to always empathize with others’ feelings regardless of logic or reasoning. We are humans, and sometimes, sole logic and reasoning is too much to handle. Oatmeal is great for you, but its bland, unappetizing taste can be sweetened with honey. In this case, a mixture or combination gives the best of both.

Today, I see others place heavy emphasis on rational thoughts among their intellectual discourse, but this comes at the expense of our emotional appeal. Coarse, blunt rhetoric can be seen everywhere. Some remarks, blabbered by uneducated adults, simply use ad hominem attacks as a child would. Others utilize cogent logic that critically fails to respect others’ emotions. My eyes and my heart shrivel whenever I identify such depressing, hurtful rhetoric. I cannot help but cringe at these comments. I remember memorable charged rhetoric and especially its effect on me. I am hurt by what painful rhetoric I unwillingly remember; I am branded by it. And I wonder: if others had considered the resulting feeling of others, wouldn’t that make a world of difference?

Today, I emphasize keeping comments respectful and free of offensive, provocative language. While I have bad days, just as anybody does, I will eventually get around to correcting myself. I believe it is imperative to avoid offending others. I also cannot accept any hate speech or harassing comments, as one who cannot capture the hearts of others, instead injuring them, has no need to share their ill-fated words to anybody. Some lament the need to be politically correct because they are tired of suppressing their thoughts in exchange for others’ comfort. Their solution for sensitive people is to be “less offended,” and my response is that such an ideology proves to be ineffective. Everybody is different, but sensitive people should be respected and thought of, not tossed aside as inferiors, for we all have our diverse possibilities of “weak points” to our hearts, and as a general rule of thumb, should be careful to accidentally tread on them. We should make every effort to respect others the way we would want to be respected. Treat others the way you want to be treated. That is the “Golden Rule,” which has been proven time after time. If one is tired of being politically correct, they are tired of being selfless. And while that is understandable, at least keep selfish interactions to oneself, so that others will not be accidentally injured by charged words.

Today, I try to reflect my philosophy in my comments. Every time I write charged rhetoric, I feel a small voice of empathy warn me: others may not be so happy with my words. And I will tone down this charged rhetoric into more palpable, soothing rhetoric. My “voice of empathy” filter is far from perfect, but its installation in my soul is absolutely important for me to keep, or make, others happy with some positively or neutrally-inclined words. I hope you will understand what I feel, and try to focus your rhetoric not solely on the rational, but also on the emotional. Please, consider others’ feelings before saying things. It can mean the difference between a joyous day and a depressed day. And if you cannot consider others’ feelings when you speak, at least apologize after you’ve realized it. Thank you for making the world a better place.

Five years of MyWikis: how I successfully founded and managed a business

On February 22, 2017, my company MyWikis will celebrate its fifth anniversary. While it is a small business, it has been a one-in-a-million experience that has positively changed my life immensely and forever. Part of its success lies behind passion, uniqueness, and quality that we give our customers. But the last element of success? Luck. This blog post reminisces what I did to get my company where it is today.

Ok, let’s go back to 2009. I can thank a good chunk of my passionately-accrued knowledge to Wikipedia. I read articles like they were movies, storing their information as either trivia or useful knowledge. It helped me find some of my passions.

But if you go on Wikipedia and scroll all the way to the bottom, you’ll see a small image that says “Powered by MediaWiki.” Try clicking on it. One fateful day 6-7 years ago, I too clicked on that link. What I saw excited me: the ability to run my own wiki using the same software that powers Wikipedia. I love the concept of wikis.

At the same time, I liked to use the wikis on a website called Wikia. In 2010-2011, I contributed to quite a few of them, but their management made decisions that caused its entire community to go into an uproar. A few other wiki hosts popped up, and I started visiting them, but none satisfied me. I loathed all of them, especially Wikia. (Actually, I did help with one wiki host, but things went sour within months of their advent, so I was quite disappointed.)

I had been messing around with MediaWiki for a year now, and I was excited to implement real ones online. So I decided to create a wiki host based on these premises. Don’t be like Wikia (don’t screw over the community and make them hate you), host a safe haven for wikis, and don’t shut down like the others.

One night, I went on a walk with my dad and pitched this to him. He agreed to pay for the hosting costs and that was the day that MyWikis was born. (February 22, 2012. I was 11.)

I originally planned to have a wiki farm-style community. The wiki farm would have to be supported somehow, so I decided to go with donations. Then, I decided that donations didn’t make enough money, so we’d go with advertising. Turns out that didn’t work either. Those plans slowly faded from reality.

A year went by. The company was approached by another wiki farm and offered to merge with us. On principle, that sounded great. They were going to start a wiki farm-style community and had the wiki set up to accommodate it. I originally accepted, but I found they were in fact jerks and I couldn’t bear to work with them any further. (I sound like a child, but remember, I was 12 when this happened.) The experience left me scarred and distrustful of the wiki hosting industry. I did later approach another wiki host to collaborate business-wise, but they also had unbearable staff members that I refuse to collaborate with. It turns out that most people who manage things related to wikis are antisocial, heartless jerks. I might be included, in which case I apologize profusely 🙁 really sowwy, but I certainly can’t work with others like that.

(Digression: the one thing I did envy was that they had a team that worked on the wiki farm. I have been solo since day one.)

I was at rock bottom. I owed about $150 to my dad and we had to pay $130 for next year’s hosting again. The situation was dire. There were several corrections that I made so my business would turn around from our money-bleeding:

  • start charging for plans. While I never intended for MyWikis to be this way, it wouldn’t have worked any other way. It turns out this is the secret behind our business.
  • bought We started out with but was someone else’s. On August 19, 2013, I had finally been able to buy the .com domain. Since it boosted SEO, I immediately moved operations there.
  • distinguish ourselves from other wiki hosts. There are many free wiki hosts out there, so why would anybody pay for wiki hosting? I had to convince others why, and today, it’s pretty much a given that my company’s target audience will shell out money for their wiki hosting.
  • advertise and increase marketing. We had no money for buying ads, but there is a place to spread the word on (it has a specific page dedicated to listing wiki hosting services) I also made efforts to increase the website’s SEO.

Adding explanations of our service and what it included has since attracted many clients. MyWikis now provides premium support to all of our clients. I use my MediaWiki experience to cater wikis to the client’s needs. Furthermore, there are two things free wiki farms do not offer:

  • privacy – companies need this. Many of our clients are companies needing a wiki for internal purposes. Other wiki hosts simply don’t offer the level of privacy we have. Furthermore, other wiki hosts don’t tailor wikis for our clients like we do.
  • VisualEditor – this is a big boon for our business. Our clients want it and so do we. MediaWiki is edited by wiki markup, by default. However, VisualEditor is a WYSIWYG editor that helps our clients edit their wikis effortlessly.

We adapted to what was needed. I still think it all worked out in the end because everything fit together perfectly, thanks to luck. The company’s focus wasn’t what I expected, but the unique combination of all of these traits makes MyWikis what it is today: successful.

Note that my age wasn’t really a big barrier. Just because it was unheard of for an 11 year old to create a wiki host didn’t stop me. I had the skills and that’s really all that matters. I’m 16, so I’m still a minor, and I’m celebrating my business’s 5th anniversary. That doesn’t sound normal, but it’s life and it is how it is.

I would like to thank everybody who helped my business and me these past five years. It has been a lovely experience that I wish to continue. I look forward to more years of success and serving customers, helping them with their every need and wish.

The next chapter involves getting involved with the law: incorporation. Oh boy. And I would love to hire some staff members to help me out. I’m still lonely and I appreciate the company. (Pun not intended.)

I don’t have any multi-person business experience yet, so I’ll get back to you when I have learned that stuff.

Someone once heard me introduce MyWikis and remarked “sometimes you wonder what you’re doing with your life when you see people like this.”

I just wanted to say that their job pays more than this company does, in any given time frame. This is a side job for me. Thank goodness I am financially supported.

I do wish to stress that this blog post is not a stereotypical generalized guide intended for you to follow along so you can create your business. While I want to help you, this isn’t the guide. I have helped one person with their business to, objectively speaking, little success.

Here’s some tips you might want to follow, but don’t blame me if this doesn’t work. And please don’t treat the below as a panacea. Unless it works really well, in which case I take back what I said and I want a cut of your profits.

Only start a business if you:

  1. are motivated by passion (not to pay tuition but passionate about what your business does)
  2. are very capable of managing money
  3. know your job well
  4. have principal capital to start it off with (covering initial expenditures)
  5. can devote lots of time to it
  6. know how you stack up against competitors
  7. have an idea on how to attract and keep customers
  8. know how to market your business’s products/services well (advertise and upsell)
  9. have problem solving skills and can adapt to new developments that your business may encounter
  10. are lucky and are ready to put everything you’ve got into it

A business is a major investment of your time. I only support entrepreneurs who have true passion, a vision, and a dream/goal. I’ve met many entrepreneurs, but I’ve only met one person who fulfills those three criteria. The rest are not doing it correctly or honestly, to be frank. Some are forcing it and that’s just awkward, deceptive, and won’t get them anywhere.

Also, I wish to point out that I didn’t read any wikiHow articles about creating a business or take an MIT Launch course on edX. I let my natural intuition and skills do all of the work. Forcing the skills won’t get you anywhere; they have to become second nature to you. Every single item on the list above must be second nature to you in order to have a successful business, and even then, success is not guaranteed. On the contrary, you don’t have to be perfect. There are many people more qualified than me to create a business, but they fail or don’t try because they either don’t want to or they don’t have that innate motivation needed to run a business. I learn as I go and that’s perfectly fine.

Oh, and one more thing. If you want to make your business to get rich or to earn money mundanely, then don’t try, because it’s fake effort, and that won’t cut it. Do what you love and do it well. That’s the mantra of successful business founders everywhere.

Realistic thoughts and practical insight on our incoming president and his policies

As we approach Inauguration Day, the impending Trump administration dawns on us. I, for one, am not looking forward to the increased racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia, and other hatred this man promotes. Just about everybody I have talked to, including Trump supporters, acknowledge that he is a terrible person.

But he is going to be our president. There is no more denying this fact. As much as we hope this isn’t coming true, it is coming true. We must therefore prepare for this regime switchover that happens every eight years in the United States of America. I will forewarn my readers: I have my opinions and I have my emotions associated with Trump. I’ll try my best to justify them, but you might not agree with them. Oh well, pure rationality is impossible, so I’ll try the best I can right now to give you my insight on him.

First off, the social aspect of Trump. This is where Obama shines (shined after he leaves office) but Trump completely fails at. The media, SNL, etc. poke fun at his Twitter account and associated tweets of horror, his fiery speeches leading to nowhere, his absurd claims, and his rampant encouragement of hatred. For the next four (or eight) years, expect nothing less than regression in general social etiquette. I hope gullible children do not seriously believe that Obama and Hillary Clinton were the actual founders of ISIS. I don’t wish to cover the obvious points any further, but I wonder if Trump intentionally manipulated and created the alt-right solely to get him elected. I have heard that he saw the resentment of many Americans. I’d like to add to that: he played the anger and won that way. It’s not like Hillary Clinton was any better: she is a liar but at least she gets things done and lies cleanly. I’m deeply saddened and heartbroken that Trump would do this, but considering neither candidate were exactly epitomes of morality, I have become desensitized at this point by the craziness of the election. I do believe Trump did one of two things:

  1. Played the alt-right so well that it got him elected. After he is elected, he will simply ignore their needs and do his liberal-conservative mashup agenda, à la Trump+GOP.
  2. Truly is hateful and believes in the alt-right cause so much that he will wreak havoc on the United States for years to come.

This election cycle, the Democrats played on the hatefulness and social instability that Trump brings. They weren’t wrong. I am personally concerned about my well-being. Perhaps I will be deported, even though I am a rightful citizen of the United States. Hope not.

But I have seen a lot of Democratic Party propaganda this election cycle. Now that news is getting less partisan than before, the focus returns on the other main aspect: the economy.

The economic aspect of Trump looks promising but also somewhat concerning. Most people who support him are excited that a successful businessman will be “fixing the economy.” Okay, first off, Obama did an okay job with the economy. He happened to ride on a wave that boosted the American economy from terrible to great. He cleaned up the mess that George W. Bush left us in. Saying that the economy is a wreck is mostly wrong. However, there are legitimate concerns that Trump supporters pose economically. The problem is, while these issues are legitimate, Trump’s ideas are radical, far-fetched, and if not implemented correctly, will ruin the United States economically for decades to come.

On the international level, Trump wants to repeal NAFTA (mainly because of how it links us with Mexico economically) and to impose tariffs solely on China. Both are made in response to the increased outsourcing of labor and primary/secondary economic activities to these countries, as well as the increased leverage this gives China on the global scale. While these concepts directly help the United States, they ultimately harm the US if not done correctly.

The new international division of labor now intricately binds the world economy together, caused by events such as the advent of the World Trade Organization (and China’s admission into it). The result? Outsourcing. (However, it is also important to note that automation is now increasingly replacing outsourcing anyway; regardless of where automation occurs, it always replaces human jobs.) This division is complex and hard to unwind. The intricacy of these arrangements has led to countries around the world becoming increasingly dependent on other countries, just as drug addicts become increasingly dependent on their drugs the more they use them.

Trump’s economic policies seem pro-American, but by returning the United States to isolationism, he could dig us into a very deep hole that we won’t be able to climb out of for several decades if he doesn’t pull this off correctly. If companies decide to continue their outsourcing and automation, there is only so much Trump can do. Commodity prices will rise, food may becoming increasingly expensive or even run out if we end NAFTA/let the drought in California continue. Trump needs to be careful with his every step if he really wants the US to become self-dependent.

I am doubtful that this will work. India previously was self-reliant and isolationist. In the late 80s, they gave up because their isolationist policies failed, so they opened up and now they do the same drug that all countries do, with China growing its opium and the US begging for more heroin. Someone once pointed to Germany as a good example of what was a well-structured economy; it has a healthy amount of workers in the primary and secondary economic sectors, while the US has too few in these two sectors. The result is that the US will collapse if we do not rectify the previous neglect of primary and secondary economic activities. While the United States is a developed country and can subsequently allow for a lower proportion of its population to be in the primary and secondary sectors, it does need to place more focus on keeping these sectors alive. 75% of the labor force in the tertiary sector is a bit concerning. We have outsourced too much of our primary sector to Mexico and too much of our secondary sector to China, resulting in our addiction to marijuana and opium. Trump needs to fix this more so than just gutting NAFTA and imposing tariffs on Chinese imports; those are supposed to be the beginning. If this is fixed, the out-of-work secondary sector will find jobs again (unless they are ousted by automation, in which case Trump faces the dilemma of technological progression vs. maintaining archaic divisions of labor). We need to see more rectifying actions by Trump in order to feel safe about his attempt to quit these addictions to marijuana and opium. As for the German example, I must hesitate to applaud it. Although they seemingly have a healthier ratio of the labor force in their primary and secondary sector compared to their tertiary and quaternary sector, their heavy integration into the European Union economy effectively stymies any argument that more primary and secondary economic activities are needed for isolationism, as Germany is the opposite of isolationist. I would like to further investigate Germany’s economy, however.

On the domestic level, Trump, if successful, will “bring jobs back to America” by reinstating archaic economic activities (manufacturing). While we should probably keep a solid foundation to prevent the house from crumbling onto the floor, there is no way to build another floor upward (of the quaternary/high-tech sector) if we devote too much of resources to continually building a foundation. There needs to be a balance. Some manufacturing jobs need to be brought back to the United States, but we cannot continue to let the coal-mining jobs of West Virginia keep us back in the nineteenth century. It is time to move on. Trump needs to find these coal miners a new job. I hate to say it, but coal mining is past its time and we need to move to clean energy. We just need to find these people a new job.

The remaining parts of this post, in an effort to hasten my completion of this long, confusing post, will be short and disjointed.

As a businessperson, it seems that Trump’s new tax plan will save taxpayers lots of money. Our family will see savings. Yours will too. However, it also potentially makes incorporating my business unnecessary. I am looking forward/hoping that Trump will introduce pro-business plans, but inside, at the same time, I think of the money that we save from his tax cuts. If we didn’t cut taxes and instead diverted the money to a free college education, the monetary loss would be significant but the monetary burdens would be significantly decreased. I will continue to monitor the difference between government interference and personal monetary management as my life progresses. We might want to follow Germany’s college for the smarts, technical school for the capable ideology. Perhaps college for all is not such a great idea. But government interference ensures no rich people (Trump included) manipulate poor people through all of this “monetary freedom.” As you know, too much power on one side leads to abuse and tyranny. Too much power in the government’s hand and we have an autocracy. Too much power in the rich’s hands and we have a plutocracy. Hmm.

The Trump administration has also proposed to upgrade the US’s infrastructure. I applaud that, but I bet it’s going to be done the austerity way, just like the Republicans like it: private financing and whatever. Ugh. I remember the stimulus plans that Obama had given in ’09 quite fondly. I have still yet to see which will work better.

I’ll probably cover foreign policy later. Yes, he’s “cozy” with Putin, but we have yet to see what foreign policy under the Trump administration will look like.