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MIAMI — Frank Cestero is in the sweet spot. The Puerto Rican husband and father enjoys the warm, tropical weather of Palm Beach County, Florida while the small company he works for is booming thanks to secular trends underway within renewable energy markets globally.

Cestero is the chief financial officer of Solartech Universal headquartered in the coastal city of Riviera Beach. Solartech is the Sunshine State’s only homegrown manufacturer of highly efficient, high quality solar modules, or panels. …


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MIAMI — Rick Rose owns the popular Grandview Gardens Bed & Breakfast and Vacation Homes in West Palm Beach, Florida.

As a German-American and small business owner, he wondered for a long time why the Sunshine State lacked sleek, high-speed train systems similar to the ones that exist in Germany, Europe and East Asian countries like Japan.

Well, not anymore.

Since Jan. 13, the first privately-operated, high-speed passenger rail service in the U.S. has been carrying hundreds to thousands of daily South Florida commuters between West Palm Beach and the city of Fort Lauderdale, its neighbor some 60–80 kilometers to the south along the Atlantic coast. …


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MIAMI — The U.S. economy, with its baby boomer cohort steering the ship, has long been addicted to cheap everything, from employee wages to everyday products and services.

So now America suffers from a case of post-bubble amnesia, or the memory of life as it was last century before policies promoting competitiveness and globalization undermined the world’s most successful engine of middle class growth.

Monetary policy, with its fixation on inflation and wage pressure, also served to deflect public attention away from economic policies that undermined the U.S. …


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MIAMI— Saja Beslik, head of sustainable finance for Nordea Bank’s $400B wealth management unit, says one of Europe’s largest financial institutions won’t buy any more Facebook stock until the air clears around accusations that the popular social network gave away private user data to third parties for years without enforcing strict controls over how that information would be used.

“One-offs, fine. Usually that’s something that a company can manage in a responsible way,” Beslik told Bloomberg News. “But what we are worried about are the systemic issues.”

Beslik is not alone in putting some distance between his money and the Menlo Park-based social media giant, which went public in 2012 and also owns another popular networking platform, Instagram. This week, shares in Facebook lost almost 10 percent of their market value after the company was reportedly linked to a U.K. political consulting firm that improperly obtained information on millions of Facebook users in order to target American voters with propaganda during the U.S. …


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MIAMI— Hurricane Irma, one of the most devastating storms to hit the state of Florida, revealed one important thing about the future of news: digital media tools enable legacy press (as a First Amendment institution) to empower citizens and reinvent democracy (not a business model).

‪With a hollowing out of seniority within newsrooms, the level of national discourse plummeted in the last 10 years. Industry novices and duopoly politicians set the parameters of debate instead of press elders who could have kept the conversations elevated and focused on key issues.‬ …


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MIAMI— Unlike gross domestic or national product, the concept of sovereign wealth transcends fiscal, industrial and monetary policies. As a system, it integrates public finance, central banking, social well-being and aggregate demand.

After the global financial crisis in 2008, these terms are now fundamental to the evolving and complementary theory behind quantitative easing (QE), which is a practical realization within political, financial and academic circles that the role of U.S. …


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MIAMI— Like the big oligopolistic megabanks of Wall Street, a handful of New York-based entertainment giants control corporate newsgathering through the most powerful medium of the 20th Century: television.

Hmm… Speaking at a Dallas memorial service on July 12 for police officers slain by a disgruntled ex- U.S. Army soldier, President Obama reminded the audience, “We are not as divided as we seem.”

A majority of older Americans and members of the press still develop their worldviews based on homogenized programming disseminated from these few New York-based newsrooms, so why would should we appear divided, to whom? The dividers maybe, the national surrogates who force U.S. …


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MIAMI— After decades of relative stability, America’s two-party system is in decline, and the reasons go beyond non-existent statesmanship, captured republican governance or fecklessness by modern, poverty-stricken press.

President Obama’s recent nomination of Judge Merrick Garland to the U.S. Supreme Court is just the latest example of intentional gridlock and abdication of public duty. Then there are those Democratic Party super delegates and the ideological objectivity of a corporate media preoccupied with paychecks at the expense of the First Amendment.

This cracking social compact between U.S. citizens and their leaders not only reflects a paralysis of governance, but also an insulation of corruption at the most basic level: ideas and civil discourse. Philosophically sound, political alternatives have been marginalized, and despite fame as a new currency complementing wealth, not enough Americans outside of traditional politics have stepped up as citizens. …


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MIAMI— Republican presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz set off a firestorm of criticism Jan. 15 after failing to clearly explain “New York values” during a nationally televised debate in South Carolina.

In response to a question from Fox Business News moderator Maria Bartiromo, Cruz told the audience that his jab at GOP frontrunner and New York City (NYC) businessman Donald Trump was aimed at the city’s social liberals, money managers and media gatekeepers.

However, a weak explanation exposed Cruz to ridicule by members of the mainstream media, most of whom live and work in Trump’s hometown by virtue of U.S. …

About

Daniel Hicks

Media research, sustainable business & global talent.

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