Tuesday, August 18, 2015

 No, on Minimum Wage!

Does Anybody Remember the

Meaning and Intention of "Capitalism?”

I am shocked that nobody is screaming for government to get out of the routine affairs of entrepreneurial ambitions!

 1.0.  Example

If I want to start up a company and I have done my homework to show me what the costs of my business will be in order for me to make a profit, who the heck is government to tell me what I have to pay my potential employees?

A.  Employer/owner Risk taking
       As private enterprise, also known as “Capitalism,” I am to assume all of the following risks when
        undertaking a business enterprise: 

(1) Spend my personal savings money, borrowed financing and/or investor capital on the feasibility, marketing, and, if required, environmental impact studies necessary to obtain all the permits and licenses in order to receive approval to conduct my desired business.

(2) Provide all the capital investment from my bank accounts, borrowed financing and/or investor capital needed to:

Purchase/lease workspace,

Cover the costs of all the necessary overhead items such as utilities, general liability insurance, furniture and fixtures,

     Consumable office supplies,

     Employee health plans, sick leave, holidays and vacation time.

3. Provide the operating money borrowed from myself, financing institutions and/or investor capital sufficient to cover the cash flow requirements of paying all the month-to-month operating expenses and payroll for all employees during start-up and until sufficient service or product sales are streaming in on a continuing basis to pay such expenses.

               4. Pay for all the governmental employer required salary taxes, sales taxes, inventory taxes,
               and company earnings taxes.

5. Pay myself back (with fair interest) for the money I took out of my savings account [which is, designed to pay for my living expenses when I am no longer able to work], to pay back the borrowed principal with interest, and/or to pay dividends to the investors.

   B.  Employees have no risk
          Please notice that the employees do not share in these employer expenses. Also, notice that
          governmental bodies do not share in these risks. As the owner/employer, I take all of the risks. 
          Who is going to protect me as the owner/employer? Who is going to protect me so I can keep
          employing people?

               1. Has that government body conducted a market assessment analysis to see what the
               impact of its required labor wage value will do to the potential success of my company?
               2..  Is the government body willing to guarantee to cover the difference in fluctuating   
                consumer sales demand so that I can recover the following?

(a) My out-of-pocket loans from my saving account

(b) Borrowed money repayments

(c) To ensure that any investors receive a reasonable return on their investment

(d) It would also ensure that I receive a reasonable profit for taking all the risks of

 (e) Employing people who might otherwise be unemployed and surviving off public funds.
          C. Will these government bodies share with me, as the employer, in the costs of government
           required health benefits provided to employees?

    D.  A willing “seller” and a willing “buyer.”
            As an employer, I make an offer to pay somebody so much money to provide a service or,
            make or a product. A person reads my offer and can decide to accept it or not. If that person
            accepts a position in my company, the conclusion is that there is a willing “seller” and a
           willing “buyer.”

           That is the nature of doing business in a capitalistic society. If nobody wants to accept my
            wage offer then I will have to recalculate my numbers to determine whether the intended
            business is viable or not as a private enterprise. 

2.0   Let Government Makeup the Difference

If government bodies want to ensure that all employees receive a “livable income” then they should look to themselves, providing the difference in pay from what an employer is willing to pay to whatever the government bodies determine is a “livable income.” However, this would just be another form of Social Security! Is that what we all really want to create?


3.0 Cause and Effect of Forced Minimum Wages on Employers and Employees

A.  Increasing the minimum wage encourages some unscrupulous employers to use illegal immigrants in order to maintain a wage that works for the success of making  a product or providing a service at a profit.  When employers use illegal workers they look for alternative ways to make up the money such as the following methods:

(1).  Pay the illegal worker in cash thus the employer’s share of payroll taxes are not paid into the system.  The extension of this effort is that the illegal employee does not report the illegal income thus they do not pay their share of federal and state payroll taxes or annual income taxes.
(2).  The employer shaves the number of vacation days, sick days and holidays that the illegal employee could receive, that is, if they were to receive any at all.  And, these days off would be without employers paying the illegal worker for those days of missed work.

B. When employers use legal workers they will look for alternative ways to make up the money such as the following methods:

(1).  There will be employers who will reduce the number of paid vacation, sick and holidays that can be earned by an employee.

(2).  The employers will reduce the weekly number of hours an employee can work thus letting the employer avoid paying their share of health benefits.  

(3) Additionally, these employers will likely reduce the amount of their company health cost payments to that minimum percentage required by governments imposing a minimum to be paid by an employer.  This increases the share amount that has to then be paid by the employee.

(4). There will be employers who will reduce the weekly number of hours an employee can work thus avoiding that employee reaching the point where they must be paid overtime for working more than a 40 hour work week.

(5) There will be employers who will stop providing the employer-matching share for employee savings towards retirement plans.  Some will cease retirement plans entirely.


4.0 . Big Business/Government Contracts and Requests for Proposals

I have no problem with a government entity or public enterprise requiring that a private enterprise bidder must pay a minimum wage to its employees should that proposer be awarded that contract.

It is the right of the government entity and public enterprise to set the terms on which they will allow a company to work on their contract.  As an employer, I have the right to decide not to bid on the proposal if I do not want to pay that minimum wage or I must decide to pay it if I want to bid and if I win the proposed work.


1.  Why not a maximum wage that can be paid an employee?  What is the constitutionality that allows the government to propose a minimum wage value on a private business and then present it to the voting public for a vote of approval or not to enforce?

If a minimum wage can be forced on a private enterprise business owner, then that same logic says that the same proposal and enforcement process can be applied to establish the maximum amount that an employer can be allowed to pay its employees. This is just simply wrong in a democratic society operating a capitalistic economic system! 

Who is going to tell Bill Gates or Warren Buffet that they can only make, say $250,000 a year including monthly payroll checks, bonuses and stock options?    Who is going to tell the wine giant Gallo’s, a wholly family owned private business enterprise, how much they can make?
2.  Why not a maximum stock price or dividend that can be paid to an investor?  When will the government and the general voting public start setting what the price of a company’s stock will be allowed to be?  How much dividend can be paid on each stock unit?

3. Stifling innovative thoughts and business! If the government and voting general public can set minimum wages on private enterprise then capitalism and democracy as we know it today are doomed and we will become a socialistic country stifling free thought and entrepreneurial  motivation where persons seek reward for the risks that they take while seeking to make their fortune.


Leave private enterprise alone!  Stop trying to regulate things where government has no right to interfere.  In other words, the work place must run under the doctrine of “Laissez- faire.” If not, government will eventually squelch innovation and move our economy to a socialistic state, stagnating and forcing all the ambitious and hard working to carry the lazy on their backs, all for the same pay. Economic collapse, therefore, is inevitable


interesting articles


Meaning of  Private versus Public Enterprises

A. Private Enterprise

Here is what Thefreedictonary.com and The American heritage dictionary say

“1.  business activities unregulated by state ownership or control; privately owned business

2. A privately owned business enterprise, especially one operating under a system of free enterprise or laissez-fare capitalism.”   

Factsaboutbusiness.com says it is “an economic system that rewards firms for their ability to perceive and serve the needs and demands of consumers.”

Dictionary.com uses the Collins English language dictionary which defines private enterprise as

“1.  economic activity undertaken by private individuals or organizations under private ownership.

2. another name for capitalism”

Businessdictionary.com says it is the “basis of a free market capitalist system, it is a business unit established, owned, and operated by private individuals for profit, instead of by or for anybody by or for government or its agencies.”

B. Public Enterprise

Here is what Britannica says:  “a business organization wholly or partly owned by the state  and controlled through a public authority.  Some public enterprises are placed under public ownership because, for social reasons, it is thought the service or product should be provided by a state monopoly.  Utilities, broadcasting, telecommunications and certain forms of transportation are examples of this kind of public enterprise.”

 Businessdictionary   addresses another segment of a public enterprise  it is “a company whose shares are available and traded on the stock market or other over-the-counter market.  Subject to more regulation than a privately owned company, a public enterprise  has greater access to financing.  Shareholders own a percentage of the company based on the amount of stock they own.”


Sunday, August 16, 2015

By John M. Olney
July 22, 2011
Part Two of a Three Part Series for, :

The Concept of a “Hall of Fame” and the Overlooked Greats

Regarding the Nominees. A Hall of Fame (HOF) needs to be designed to
1. Recognize those individuals and entities who, after examination of conclusive evidence, have contributed to one or more of these measurement factors:

- A significant skill above that of the average person in that trade/profession

- Design and development of a processing methodology that becomes routinely adopted by the industry

- Equipment product that significantly improves the overall quality of the end result of the subject industry

2. Recognize multiple recipients’ who as a team contributed to the industry one or more of the aforementioned measurement factors. An example would be a winery owner who supplied all capital backing necessary for his/her winery to produce a quality wine although those owners were not necessarily involved in the daily operation of the wine production. The initial years of founder Jesse Jackson of Konicti Winery and his winemaker Jed Steele producing the award winning Chardonnay that launched K-J on its fantastic growth. Jackson has been inducted into the CVHOF but the man, Steele, who actually was responsible for its production has not been inducted. Another example is only half o the team that most in the trade credit with the development of the sun degree days table has been inducted when both should have gone in at the same time..

Regarding the Electoral College of a HOF. The HOF has to have a comprehensive understanding of the background and experience levels of those associated to the subject industry of the HOF who would be voting upon the nominees. One must avoid establishing a voting body consisting of a great number of individuals whose age, historical knowledge of the wine industry and experience level preclude them from comparing “old timers” to their contemporizes so they vote for the “known entity” thereby bypassing some of the most important contributors to the American Wine Industry or a smaller segment of it like say the State of California.

1. A HOF needs to be based on a solid foundation recognizing those throughout the history of the subject industry of that HOF.

2. The HOF must include all of the various aspects of that industry. In the case of wine, it must include recognition of individuals and groups from the planting and management of the vineyard, to the winemaker & winery owner, public relations & marketing divisions, wine writer/critic & historian, to the distributor & retailer, all of which make it an industry.

2. The HOF needs to have the ways and means to verify the “credentials” of the names submitted for possible nomination for election to, and induction, in such HOF

3. It is essential that the organizational body of a HOF design and prepare unbiased, accurate and complete biography sheets on each candidate for the voting body to review and consider in their individual selection process.

This latter point is where I believe the creators of the CVHOF make their most crucial misjudgment. They believe that they must use short statement abstracts of no more than about three sentences because they believe that the electoral college members would not take the time to read a full biographic background on each of the 30 plus nominees the CAHOF normally proposes on its ballot each year. This abstract or biographical write-up is what I consider the most crucial criteria in order to have a valid HOF of the most worthy inductees and not just a bunch of inductees decided by “popular vote.”

When the HOF organizations selects individuals to be part of the electoral college, that prospective voter needed to be aware that he will be reading biographical statements that may require his/her time in order to understand the true value of that nominees contributions relative to that of another candidate. If the candidate of the electoral college does not feel he/she can commit to such time then they should be forthright and upfront and decline to become part of the voting body.

(www.ciaprochef.com/winestudies/events/vhf_inductees.htmlThe CVHOF has been in existence now for four (4) years and has inducted 33 individuals. You can review its history at the web site shown above. Many of these individuals are important contributors to the California Wine Industry but they are certainly not more important than many other individuals, who in my opinion, made much greater significant contribution to the industry and should already be inducted into the CVHOF.

I do not understand how such giants as the following - some of whom have been nominated at least once and some more - are not inducted.

I know of at least one other writer who appears to think along similar lines to me and it is Dan Berger, who published in February 25, 2011, in his article, ““Not in the Vintners Hall of Fame — but they should be,” for the Napa Register the following paragraphs in quotation and italics. Dan Berger’s mentioning of Petri reminded me of the list of large wine operations shown below.

Big Five U.S.A. Winemakers as of the 1952-53 timeframe (listed by capacity in gallons)

1 - Roma - 30 million

2 - California Wine Association (CWA) - 29.65 million

3 - Italian Swiss Colony (ISC) - 26 million

4 - Wine Growers’ Guild - 22 million

5 - Petri - 20 million
“Louis Petri" One of the most important people in the history of the wine industry, Petri, president of powerful Allied Grape Growers, was the dominant force in American wine following World War II — a marketing force, innovator, and the man who changed the way wine was shipped to market.” By Dan Berger

Let me give you an example of the magnitude of his accomplishments with just the comments listing below

Petri’s purchase of ISC moved him to the largest producer in the USA. Nobody from any of these five companies (Except as a member of a subsidiary winery) has yet been elected to the CVHOF, yet Gallo Brothers are in! Robert Mondavi is in! How can that be a true HOF? Let me add a little to the Petri legend. Petri was so forward thinking that he modified a tanker ship renaming it the “Petri.” He was shipping by sea his wine to the East Coast cheaper than anyone else at the time using all the other transportation methods.

Allied Grape Growers was the sister company of United Vintners, the marketing firm, also headed by Petri, that eventually absorbed the great Napa-based Inglenook Estate created by Gustave Niebaum and then taken to new fame under his great grand nephew, John Daniel. His firm also maneuvered the Napa Valley-based Beaulieu Vineyard estate created under Georges de Latour and its famed winemaker Andrè Tchelistcheff, into the Allied/Vintners domain. All four of these gentlemen are inducted in the CVHOF but Louis Petri is not? What Petri accomplished during his lifetime in the American Wine Industry is, in this writer’s opinion, well deserving of being inducted into the CVHOF.

Berger goes on to mention other greats in the earlier history of the California Wine Industry.

“Eugene Hilgard, the 19th-century botanist and visionary who paved the way for grapes to be planted in Livermore Valley and numerous other locations where he theorized great wine could result.” By Dan Berger

“Byron and Alice Nightingale of Cresta Blanca and later Beringer? The two jointly invented a complex process to make world-class dessert wine. Myron, chief wine maker at Beringer, was one of the most respected wine makers until his death in 1988.” By Dan Berger

I would both agree with and add to Mr. Berger’s list the following candidates.

Percy Morgan
He who essentially designed and then managed the giant California Wine Association (CWA) and lead it to become a completely vertical integrated wine producer. It once owned and/or controlled over 80% of the wine produced in California from 1894 to 1920 At that time CWA was also the largest wine company in the world. It included all seven of the great San Francisco based wine brokers and merchants of the times and the Napa Valley Wine Company. By 1900, the majority of the state's wineries had joined the CWA, including Stag's Leap Cellars, Greystone Cellars at St. Helena, the Italian Swiss Colony, Cucamonga Vineyards, Glen Ellen Vineyards and more. At its peak, 52 wineries were members of the CWA. It was totally vertically integrated because it controlled all aspects of winemaking from the planting of the grapes, to production, bottling, marketing and shipment of its wine. Some of those who were the directors and/or shareholders in the winery operations owned/controlled by the CWA have already been inducted into the CVHOF, but why not Percy Morgan?

Kohler and Frohling
The most likely beginning point for wine production, distribution and marketing of California wine can be attributed to Charles Kohler and John Frohling of San Francisco. They originally operated out of the Los Angles area in the year 1853. By 1856, Kohler & Frohling were exporting bulk wine from their large Los Angeles, San Francisco and New York City wine warehouses to European, South American, Asian, and Pacific Rim countries. At the high point of their operation they owned wine production facilities in Los Angeles, Sonoma County, and the Central Valley.

Hamden McIntyre
He completed conceptual design of several wineries during the 1870s to 1890s that still stand today as monuments of the early Napa Valley Wine Industry. They are:

The great stone structures

Inglenook (Now owned by movie mogul Francis Ford Coppola)

Chateau Montelena (now owned by the Barretts family)

Far Niente (Now of Nichol and Nichol ownership)

Bourn and Wise (nicknamed “Greystone”) was the largest stone winery in the world. (Became best known under the ownership of Christian Brothers 1945-1996 and now occupied by the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) and home of the California Vintners Hall of Fame.)

Ewer and Atkinson (Now the inner-core of Beaulieu Vineyards winery complex)

The giant wood structures

Eschol (Now home of Trefethen winery)

Christian Pugh Adamson, (Now home to Frog’s Leap)

He also was a significant contributor to the Leland Stanford giant winery, Vina, located in Tehema County.

It should also be remembered that although Gustave Niebaum (inducted into the CVHOF) was well read on the subject of vineyard management and winery operations, he did not do the work. It was Hamden McIntyre who was vineyard and winery manager.