Business Networking Groups

Over the last 18 years, I have seen a massive rise in the number of networking organisations throughout the UK.

When you think about it, it is an extremely logical and effective way of doing business.

People tend to do business with people that they know and trust.  How better to get to know someone than through frequent contact at a networking group.

When I first started my company (WebDesigns) in 1998, I had just stopped commuting to London every day.  I was operating from a back bedroom, and knew hardly anyone at all in the town on a business basis. The first networking group I joined, Business Networking International (BNI) was the only one that I could find.

Now, we are almost spoiled for choice.  BNI, 4Networking, CADIA, EG Business Association, Crawley Chamber of Commerce, 12:30 Club, Sussex Enterprise and the Federation of Small Businesses all regularly hold networking meetings for local businesses to interact.

I have seen some great synergies formed, simply because of a chance meeting at one of these events.

If you run a business and you don’t go to any of these events, then I recommend that you attend at least a couple of meetings just to see what’s going on.

You may well be amazed at what you might find.

Obama’s Declaration of War on Syria

Just thinking out loud here, but aren’t the phrases “limited strike”, and “shot across the bow” sort of synonymous with “invasion”, “act of war”, and suchlike?

If China, or Russia, or Iran, or France, or even Lichtenstein said that it disagreed with America’s policy on Human Rights by maintaining Guantanamo Bay, and was going to carry out a “limited strike” on the US mainland as a “shot across the bow”, but it would be okay because there would be no “boots on the ground”, I just wonder how America or the rest of the world would respond?

Most people tend to think that if someone is mad, they are babbling, or frothing at the mouth or something.  This is not true madness.  True madness is the desire to hurt or injure or destroy other people, regardless of what the mad person is saying.  This desire can be hidden, or quite overt.  The outcome of  peoples actions, not just their words, are the true measure of their sanity or insanity.

Hitler was able to inspire an entire country to wage war on it’s neighbours. Ghandi was able to inspire a country to face down the British Empire.  Kennedy was able to inspire the USA to interplanetary heights of technological achievement. Which one of those was mad?  And when you think about it, doesn’t it then become obvious which are the mad people in the world?

Obama is trying to inspire an entire country to commit an act of war against a sovereign country that has not committed an act of war against America.  And the justifications for such actions are almost childishly transparent.

We all know that more innocent people would be killed and injured in the “limited strikes” than in the gas attack itself.  Look at the number of people killed and injured in Afghanistan and Iraq because of military action.

There are always alternatives.  If the case against Syrian President is proven beyond all doubt, then, for example, there could be global ostracism. Cut off all external communications to the country.  Seize all external government assets, and use them to pay for the handling of the refugees that have been forced from their homes. Freeze all foreign assets of Syrian citizens until the situation is fully resolved. Make the national currency worthless by refusing to trade in it.  Allow no imports or exports.  Jail anyone who tries to smuggle goods into or out of the country as “aiding and abetting”. Expel the country from the UN until such time as they can prove their fitness to be admitted again. One of the first steps to re-admission would be to insist that the person or persons responsible for war crimes be handed over to the International Court for trial.

After all, being part of the global community carries its own global responsibility.  The vast majority of countries understand this and take their responsibilities very seriously.

These may or may not be workable suggestions.  But I DO know that the use of force is ALWAYS unworkable in the long term, no matter how appealing it may seem to be in the short term.

Remembering 9/11

9/11 did no serious damage to the USA. As a whole, Americans were not made significantly poorer or significantly less safe. Yes, good people died on 9/11. But there have been a lot of good people murdered over the last eleven years. Every victim had his virtues. And every murdering politician in history has had his reasons.

What has done lasting damage to the USA was not 9/11. It was remembering 9/11. Over-reaction to 9/11 has played a substantial role in bankrupting the USA. With that incredible mixture of paternalistic arrogance and xenophobia that all US politicians display every time that they open their mouths, they still believe they can protect themselves by spending trillions of dollars they don’t have, on military campaigns that don’t work.

Force against ideas doesn’t work, hasn’t ever worked and will never work. But there are too many vested interests in bombs and guns in the world for a sensible dialogue to take place. None of the conflicts taking place in the world today would be possible without the active sale of weapons to the combatants.

My constructive idea? Declare an international one day truce, and get the combatants around a table for just one day to find out who has been actively promoting the conflicts behind the scenes in each case. I have an idea that the results would be quite eye-opening.

Copyright© Dale Bulbrook