Friday, October 05, 2007

On this date in 1921 The World Series was broadcast on radio for the first time. In 1947 President Harry S. Truman delivered the first televised address from the White House.

And Ray Kroc, founder of McDonald’s, was born on this day in 1903. He started his first McDonald's in Chicago in 1955 and when he died January 15, 1984 the chain ad 7,500 outlets in the United States and 31 other countries and territories. The total systemwide sales of its restaurants were more than $8 billion in 1983.

What made Mr. Kroc so successful was the variety of virtuoso refinements he brought to fast-food retailing. He carefully chose the recipients of his McDonald's franchises, seeking managers who were skilled at personal relations; he relentlessly stressed quality, banning from his hamburgers such filler materials as soybeans.

Mr. Kroc also made extensive, innovative use of part-time teen-age help; he struggled to keep operating costs down to make McDonald's perennially low prices possible, and he applied complex team techniques to food perparation that were reminiscent of professional football.

"I guess to be an entrepreneur you have to have a large ego, enormous pride and an ability to inspire others to follow your lead," he once said.

But his leadership entailed a wish that his followers be, like him, driven by an unending urge to build and to excel.

"Some people reach their level of expectations pretty quickly," he once observed. "We want someone who will get totally involved in the business. If his ambition is to reach the point where he can play golf four days a week or play gin rummy for a cent a point, instead of a tenth, we don't want him in a McDonald's restaurant."

Understandably, many McDonald's executives decorated their offices with scrolls inscribed with his favorite inspirational dictum:

Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.

I think Ray Kroc would have agreed with this:

American conservatism is only successful when it’s in tension — when the ambition of its creeds is retrained by the caution of its Burkean roots. David Brooks

So in today's world of rapidly changing technology and innovation, the new economy that is driving the stock market to record highs and giving a handfull of people the power to terrify the world, what do we do?

We can each only do the little that is possible today to move in the direction of our dreams and trust that with God's help it is enough. Let's get started!

Thursday, October 04, 2007

I’m getting positive feedback about my emailed letter to the Rocky Mountain New$ earlier today about Mayor J-Hic’s cash grab (see below). It will be interested to see if the New$ publishes the letter.

A well written letter, and a well-reasoned argument, John. Thanks for all you are doing.
Best regards,
Ryan R. Call, Esq.
(Denver GOP Vice-Chair)

Great letter, John. I think this Denver vote could be a lot closer than they want it to be.
(From a top GOP leader who wants to remain anonymous)
9:15 a.m. I'm glad the Rocky Mountain News finally pulled the Denver election story up to the front page after they received my letter.

Did the city pay for the series you are now running about the
upcoming Denver election, what Denver GOP chair Mary Smith
has told reporters is "an alphabet-soup grab for cash"?

I spoke with a reporter several times and made it clear that
the election should be seen as a referendum on Mayor J-Hic's
poor performance and people should just vote "no" and that
perhaps it was time to Kick Hic.

My comments were watered down dramatically, and Mary Smith's
comments were not reported at all!

Each morning I've looked for the series on line, and it has
been hidden in the web version of your paper. This is an
obvious manipulation of the story, it deserves at least equal
treatment with the other front page stories this week.

What has happened to the idea that our newspapers are
watchdogs on city government? Since the Join Operating
Agreement, it has become just one dysfunctional family,
the newspapers, Denver city government, and the bonding
companies, contractors and others who end up with the cash.

Denver voters who want to send a message should just vote NO.

John Wren
960 Grant St. #727
Denver, CO 80203

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

On this day in 1955 - Captain Kangaroo debuts on CBS and The Mickey Mouse Club debuts on ABC. In 1962 - Project Mercury: Sigma 7 launched from Cape Canaveral, with Astronaut Wally Schirra aboard for a six-orbit, nine-hour flight.


TODAY at 2 p.m. KC Truby will be my guest on the Online IDEA Cafe.
KC is an expert on finding new customers. Join us! Just click on the icon to
the left and either call into the show or listen through your computer.


The Rocky Mountain News continues it’s series supporting Mayor J-Hic’s bond proposals. Mary Smith, Chair of the Denver GOP has spoken out publicly and spoken with reporters about her opposition to what she calls “this alphabet-soup grab for cash.” Her comments and that of other well know opponents to the bond proposals is no where to be found in the series. Ballots are scheduled to be mailed to voters October 12.


A routine budget briefing unexpectedly turned into a scolding Monday for Mayor John Hickenlooper's stunned chief of staff.
Several Denver City Council members chided Kelly Brough about the administration's failure to give them a heads-up about proposed reductions in hours next year at 11 recreation centers, some of which are in Denver's poorest neighborhoods.

"I don't know what we've done to earn that level of disrespect," said Councilwoman Judy Montero.


I just sent this email to J-Hic:

Dear Mayor Hickenlooper,

I see your website has been taken down,
so I'm contacting your directly. (Why has the website that was
created to support your bond proposals been killed?)

I'm President of the Denver South Optimists Club. We meet each
Wednesday for lunch at Perkin's at Buchtel & S. Colorado Blvd.

Next week we will be discussing your bond proposals. We have someone
who will be speaking against them, would you or someone else be able
to join us?


I just got this back from Mayor's office:

Dear Mr. Wren,

On behalf of Mayor Hickenlooper, thank you for writing. I’m thinking that maybe you typed in the wrong web address. The website that you may be referring to is Please let us know if you have any further questions.

Best regards,
Mary Crosswright
Executive Assistant
Office of Mayor John W. Hickenlooper

When the .com address didn't work, I did a Google search, couldn't find
this .org address, and there is no link on the Denver City Website that
I could see. And I wonder why they aren't encouraging online discussion
on the site?

Monday, October 01, 2007

On this day in 1896 The U.S. Post Office established Rural Free Delivery. In 1908 Henry Ford introduced the Model T automobile to the market; each car cost $825.

I was quoted again in the Rocky Mountain News today. Same quote as yesterday. Guess it's part of the paper's effort to make Denver green:

Some GOP foot soldiers are grumbling, however.

John Wren, the House District 5 Republican chairman, said city officials should have done a better job of maintaining public buildings with past tax increases.
"I think they better be better stewards of the money they've already been given before they do these sob stories and create hysteria," Wren said. "Taxes going up is a bad thing, and I don't think the mayor has any conception of that."


With graffiti concerns surging in Denver, a city councilwoman is hoping to erase a new ad campaign by the Wendy's fast-food restaurant chain that she contends glorifies graffiti.

Councilwoman Jeanne Faatz sent a letter Tuesday to the company asking it to stop running the ad. She saw the commercial at a movie theater.
The ad features a graffiti artist named "Siloette" spray-painting the iconic Wendy's girl image on a wall.


I got this email from my friend Denver Councilperson Jeannie Faatz about my post here a few days ago about her opposition to J-Hic's teacher pay plan:


I noticed on your website a reference to a Post article about a proclamation city council considered re: employee pay. Unfortunately the reporter misunderstood one of my points. I did not say I would support a system where every employee got the same amount of raise. I said I believe there are ways to restructure compensation to have greater employee satisfaction, yet not have to increase the total amount for compensation. In other words, a different distribution of the same total appropriation we now have to achieve greater employee satisfaction.

As you said, not likely that everyone will get the exact same raise. I wouldn't advocate for that either.

The REAL point of my comments was to advocate for greater and more meaningful employee input earlier in the process. I don't want their frustrations to escalate until the only recourse they'd consider would be collective bargaining for Career Service Employees.

Jeanne Faatz