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Bob McMillanAn Opinion

By Bob McMillan

Need A Speaker?

Friday, 29 July 2011 00:00

There are many speakers out there. The challenge is identifying how to find one and to know what topics are available?

Over the years, I have done quite a number of presentations, and of course I had my TV show, Face-Off, for over 14 years, along with appearances on Fox, MSNBC and CNN. Even with all of the above, most people did not know that I was available for PowerPoint presentations on seven different topics. Then, I decided to create a website where all the information would be readily available to anyone interested.

 

Some Thoughts About Illegal Immigrants

Friday, 22 July 2011 00:00

Interestingly, the Supreme Court of the United States upheld, in May of 2011, a 2007 law passed in Arizona. That law imposed sanctions and penalties on employers who employed illegal immigrants. Do not confuse the 2007 law with law passed last year in Arizona allowing police officers to ask for documentation from people who are caught in the act of a crime or are stopped for traffic violations. That case is on the way to the Supreme Court, and a decision will be, at least, two years away.

Now, back to the recent Supreme Court decision dealing with the 2007 Arizona law. Chief Justice Roberts, in the Majority Opinion, stated, that the sanction against employers “falls well within the confines of the authority Congress chose to leave to the states.”

 

Traveling Overseas On Vacation?

Friday, 15 July 2011 00:00

Over the summer and fall, the chances are that you or someone in your family might decide to take a vacation overseas or even to Canada or Mexico. Thirty years ago when I traveled a great deal overseas for business, there was no ability to Google for information about the countries on my schedule. I had to use library books. Today, of course, the Internet gives us all research capabilities beyond comprehension.

Even if you are traveling for pleasure, understanding details about the country or countries on your itinerary will make the trip even more enjoyable. My strongest recommendation is to start at www.cia.gov/ library/ publications/theworldfactbook.

 

Defending Billy Joel and The Baymen

Friday, 08 July 2011 00:00

Back in the summer of 1992, an interesting event took place at an East End beach on Long Island, New York. Billy Joel and his wife, Christie Brinkley, the actress and model, gathered on an Amagansett Beach while several baymen demonstrated the outlawed haul seining for striped bass.

Haul seining is a form of fishing with a net taken out into the water and then hauled back to the beach with a catch of fish. Haul seining had been outlawed by the State of New York to prevent the taking of too many striped bass from the waters surrounding Long Island.

 

Who Invented the Bicycle?

Friday, 01 July 2011 00:00

The bicycle was invented back in 1840, and I want to tell you the story about how it happened. Interestingly, the inventor was a McMillan – probably a distant ancestor of mine.

Kirkpatrick McMillan, the inventor, was born in Kier Parish, several miles outside of Glasgow, Scotland in 1813. By that time, most of my ancestors had left Scotland and settled on farmland some 50 miles north of Toronto.

 

“On China”

Friday, 24 June 2011 00:00

As a general rule, my columns have never been book reviews. Today will be a partial exception. Let me explain. The piece will be about Henry Kissinger’s new book, On China.

Ever since my involvement in helping to open China for Avon Products back in 1984, I have been fascinated with the country. In addition, prior to 1984, I was from 1977 to 1978 responsible for all of Avon’s businesses in Asia and the Pacific. And prior to those assignments, I served in Korea. All of these involvements have kept me curious and informed about that part of the world.

 

Gasoline Prices and Political Talk

Friday, 17 June 2011 00:00

Back in June of 2008, I wrote a column entitled “ A Closer Look At Gasoline Prices.” That column concluded with this sentence as the last paragraph. “Without a national energy policy soon, watch out, because you may very well see the comeback of the horse and buggy!”

Now, to be serious, my concern is political talk with no positive action. And President Obama is part of the talk with no results. He wants to help, “… families at the pump and reduce our dependence on foreign oil.” Yet, after the BP oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico, what did the President do? He stopped oil drilling in the Gulf and has always sided with environmentalists who want no drilling almost everywhere.

 

A Little Golf History

Friday, 10 June 2011 00:00

For some time, as I have hit golf balls, questions always come to mind about the game’s history?

First, the origins of golf pretty definitely go back to the 15th century in Scotland. At that time, pebbles were used instead of balls with the “golfers” using wooden sticks for clubs. Then, in 1774, Edinburgh golfers actually standardized the rules for the game of golf.

Soon, pebbles evolved to leather bags stuffed with feathers. Golf balls soon changed from smooth surfaces to the current dimpled pattern. Believe it or not, the ball with dimples can travel further than the old balls with smooth surfaces. Next, in 1889, golf tees were developed.

 

The Feminine Mystique

Friday, 03 June 2011 00:00

This piece is all about how I met Betty Friedan, the author of The Feminine Mystique. Now, some of my readers may be too young to remember Betty Friedan. She was a very unique person and a leader in developing today’s modern woman.

After graduating from Smith College in 1942, Betty started a career in journalism and then married Carl Friedan in 1947. They had three children, and in those days, the career for a woman would be over. But, Betty Friedan kept writing feeling unfulfilled as a wife and mother.

 

Marilyn Monroe in Korea

Friday, 27 May 2011 00:00

Every time I deliver my PowerPoint presentation dealing with presidents and fun vignettes, the item, which gets the most laughs and questions is my coming face-to-face in Korea with Marilyn Monroe. This goes back to February of 1954.

One of my assignments as Company Commander of an Engineer Combat Company was to wet down roads so as artillery or tanks moved from one area to another Chinese spotters could not determine the locations. Wetting the roads prevented dust, and it was the dust which spotters used to track the movements of artillery or tanks. The road wetting process was one of the most unpopular assignments in my Company.

 

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Robert McMillan Website: www.bobmcmillan.net