Mann to Man

The American Condition Politically, Culturally, Economically

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Location: Williamsburg, VA, United States

Raised in rural Greenbrier Co. WV, BS Chemistry WVU, PhD Chemistry, GA Tech,Chemistry Faculty, GA Tech, 1965-1969, Dir R&D BASF Fibers 1969-1982,Sr.Exec. R&D, Burlington Industries, 1982-1986,Owner/CEO Mann Industries (formerly BASF fibers)1988-1995, CEO/Owner The Mann Group Consultants, 1987-2009, wife Carol, daughters Leigh, Susan

Wednesday, September 4, 2013





This week I've seen the most egregious example of management incompetence that I've witnessed in a lifetime of managing and consulting others to do the same. President Obama declared he'd attack Syria without consent of congress.  He then sent Sec. of State, Kerry, out Friday last to tell America and the world that he (Obama) had taken the decision to strike on Syria....going it alone. He went to play a round of golf. Then Obama "took a 45-minute walk around the WH grounds with his chief of staff" and decided he'd reverse course and consult congress after all.


Obama consulted no others, not even his security council, and didn't even tell Kerry whom he had put on the post for all to hear and see.... to mislead Americans and the world. Crisis management??? The worst!

I first published the article below on May 27, 2013. It fits so perfectly with the issues at hand today that I am presenting it again. 


Since he was first elected president with no accountable job performance, no notable qualifications and with much of his background unknown, many have speculated that Mr. Obama is an operative for others, a “Manchurian candidate” or a “Charley McCarthy” to one or more Edgar Bergen's. While evidence can be sighted to lend credence to such theory, his ineffective job performance and management style make it compelling to conclude that he is simply not qualified for the top job in the world. 
In managing any enterprise, it's a huge mistake to promote a person to a level of management beyond his qualifications. That person invariably continues doing what he or she was doing at the lower level and normally tries simply to do more of it. He does what he understands and stays in his comfort zone. Obama was a "community organizer" requiring mainly persuasive skills. His job would have been to persuade the lower socioeconomic class to go against the "higher ups.” To do so, he convinced them that they were victims of those who "controlled" them. Those who were employed he convinced to organize unions. Those who were unemployed, his job would have been to get them on the public dole. This he has done as president. The only attributes needed for that job are persuasive communication and an integrity deficit. He has both and is doing now what he did then....speaking to those who are non-thinking, non-discerning, those looking for benefits, and even the ignorant. Not all are ignorant, but he depends on them following him reflexively with loyalty to the "D," and to his celebrity status. And they do!

An unqualified manager will always hire people who are like him or her, or even of lesser skills. They will be as incompetent as he. They'll be subservient, they won't upstage him and reveal his inadequacies. They will support him for their own benefit (job, prestige, money). Obama's appointees are largely of this ilk. 

His economic advisers epitomize this – the worst in my lifetime and possibly in history. None understands business and they give no consideration to the structural problems in the economy. They are all Keynesian theorists trying to stimulate the economy as if it suffers an imbalance in supply and demand. Totally wrong-headed!

The EPA has had an incompetent director who has run EPA as a radical environmental activist, not as a responsible manager. She's had no hesitancy to destroy much of the economy, especially coal and oil. She's leaving – her damage done. The will of Obama? Of course!

The Department of Energy under radical unqualified academician, Steven Chu, typifies incompetence – management by prejudicial ideology. His goal was to have gasoline prices “equal to Europe”, $7-9/gal. The president's actions on energy prove he has a similar mind-set. His expenditures on “green energy” defy the management principle that “an enterprise is reinvented or reformed when it's at peak performance and affordable.” Obama's energy policies are antithetical to this. Then there is the unavoidable issue of corruption in awarding billions of dollars, most of it lost, to solar and wind energy companies as well as to electric vehicle manufacturers. 
Directors of the Departments of Homeland Security and Health and Human Services seem to compete with each other for inexplicable management decisions – Sec. Napolitano on immigration and Sec. Sebelius for dealing with Obamacare as examples. And, DHS's stockpiling of billions of rounds of ammunition lends some credence to conspiracy theorists. But, there's not enough information to make this conclusion. A positive explanation is difficult to come to.

Then there is Eric Holder at DOJ. No doubt he makes prejudicial decisions as he did with the New Black Panthers' voter intimidation in 2008. His prosecution of terrorists is highly questionable. The intervention in questioning the surviving terrorist in the Boston murders is suspicious, to say the least. How about “Fast and Furious” guns to Mexico or the Benghazi cover-up...and more? With Holder, I see deliberate malpractice along with probable incompetence.

And now, we have Chuck Hagel as Sec. Of Defense. His qualifications were questionable. His performance thus far suggests incompetence. To expect improvement would be naïve. 
In the corporate world, it normally takes some time for the incompetent manager to be dealt with. CEOs and boards of directors are reluctant to admit a mistake and may try to "work it out." Turnover is ignored with the explanation that the manager is "cleaning house" of incompetence – opposite from reality. Poor financial performance or personnel problems finally get attention. And, the person is fired after much damage has been done to the enterprise.

In the world of the elected and appointed, non-thinking, non-discerning, prejudiced and even ignorant voters are even more unlikely to remove an incompetent president. They vote for celebrity and for benefits and simply for the party label. So it is with Obama. 
If the person is narcissistic, it is even more difficult to identify the defects and expose his inadequacies. He will obfuscate, he will corral the least among his people to give him strength. President Obama does this in spades. He speaks persuasively on every issue, with acolytes and sycophants shielding him, to those who don't question him. That's his skill set.

If the person intends subversion, he will go to any length to effect it. Obama may be in this category. I have not wanted to think so but it is now imprudent to ignore it. Until I have more proof, I choose the explanation of his ineffectiveness as herein described. 
However, it is now fairly clear that Obama's election to the presidency has assured the loss of traditional America. He is transforming America as he promised in 2008. Non-thinking voters are helping him. 

Is his goal to destroy her? It seems possible. Reluctantly, I will be vigilant in looking for proof hoping not to find it. Unfortunately, my sense now is that I may find proof.


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