Tuesday, 19 March 2013

Book Review By Bayo Ogunmupe

Book Review
By Bayo Ogunmupe

Title: Dictionary of Legislation and Governance
Author: Taiwo Olaniran, The Managing Director and Chief Executive of Trophies and Laurels Limited, Fadeyi, Lagos.
Publisher: Trophies and Laurels Limited, 2012. This Dictionary was printed by Soladem Printers Ltd Morocco Road, Somolu, Lagos.

       The Dictionary is authored to stimulate improvements in Nigeria’s parliamentary procedure rule and techniques.
This Dictionary brings into focus the Westminster Parliamentary procedure, the substance of Parliamentary experience of Nigeria’s First Republic and our newly adopted American presidential and Congressional techniques.

       In this book, Taiwo Olaniran, the author is fostering simplified parliamentary practice in the manner of a teacher and innovator. Through this volume Mr. Olaniran is promoting high standard of parliamentary competence for good governance and a more open government.

       Parliament you may know is the English synonym for our National Assembly. In Britain it contains the House of Commons and the House of Lords. In the United States it is the Congress which comprises the House of Representatives and the Senate.

       Like in Britain and the United States our House of Representatives is greater than the Senate by virtue of its number, representative of the majority while the senate represents the ethnic diversity of the nation.

       In a democracy, there are four arms of government: the National Assembly-the Legislature, The Executive i.e.: president and his ministers, the governor and his commissioners; Thirdly, the Judiciary that interprets the law of the Legislature and the rules, edicts and orders of the executive.

       Finally we have the fourth estate which is the Press in the Nigerian Constitution and in any Constitution for that matter, the Press is charged with the responsibility of monitoring the other arms so that they do not usurp the power and sovereignty of the people. Section 22 of the Nigerian Constitution says: “the press, radio, television and other agencies of the mass media shall at all times be free to uphold the fundamental objectives contained in this chapter and uphold the responsibility and accountability of the Government to the people”. This is the obligation conferred on the press by the Constitution. That means the Press is the watchdog of the people.
       Since the Executive arm often tends toward tyranny, it is essential therefore to equip the personnel of parliament with such information as this book purveys so as to stop tyranny. Also, a country isn’t a democracy unless she has a parliament where elected representatives of the people freely express their opinions on the administration of the realm.

       This Dictionary of Legislation contains gems of expression in Law-making, government and electioneering campaigns. It thus equips legislators with the wherewithal to manage their office in essential knowledge, skills and up to date information that are germane to their responsibilities.

       The importance of this book is highlighted by the Constitution which placed the legislature first in Chapter 5, the Executive in Chapter 6 and the Judicature in Chapter 7. Moreover, in presidential democracies, when an election is in dispute, Parliament settles it. One example was the disputed election of President Rutherford Hayes of the USA who in 1876 gained the presidency by only one vote when the matter was referred to the U.S. Congress.

       With more than 5000 terminologies, this dictionary is a rich source of information for legislators, government officials, lawyers, teachers and journalists. This 318 page paperback is a must read for anyone interested in peace and good government in Nigeria.

       A particularly intriguing entry is one found on page 162, namely Mc Cain-Feingold Law. Formally titled the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of the United States, t he law is named after its two Senate sponsors John McCain a Republican from Arizona and Russell Feingold, a Democrat from Wisconsin. The law sought to remove soft money as an influence on candidates running for federal office. The law eliminated loopholes that allowed the use of soft money to aid candidates.

       We commend Taiwo Olaniran for creating time to write this book. Perhaps this is due to hid background as an academic, broadcaster and chief executive of Trophies and Laurels Limited, Fadeyi, Lagos. This is Mr. Olaniran’s fourth book, his third- Examination Techniques has been in use in secondary and tertiary institutions in Nigeria. He has also won a prize in a competition organized by BBC. Currently, Olaniran is working on Youth Employability, Entrepreneurship and Role Models Project, enterprises which are having a transformational impact on the Nigerian youth.
       My name is Bayode Ogunmupe
Columnist and Book Editor,
The Guardian, Lagos.

On the path of winners By Bayo Ogunmupe Fostering the skill of imagery

On the path of winners
By Bayo Ogunmupe
Fostering the skill of imagery

    As the saying goes: you can only be as great as you imagine. Which is why you have to cultivate the habit of visualizing your life goals. The world renowned theologian and teacher, William Bernbach said, "For the flower to blossom, you need the right soil as well as the right seed. The same is true to cultivate good thinking."
    Good thinkers are always in high demand. And good thinking starts from imaging your possibilities. That is why the person who knows how will always land a job but the person who knows why will always be his boss. Visionary leaders solve problems, they never lack ideas with which to build organizations. They always have the vision for a better future. Those who foster the skills of imagery know how to control themselves even while under oppressors.

Fostering the habits of imaginative thinking isn't complicated. It is only a discipline to be cultivated. To do this you need a place to think your thoughts. Charles Kettering a noted inventor and holder of more than 140 patents, once likened creating a place for thinking to hanging a bird cage in your mind. This was made clearer by a thousand dollar bet he once had with his friend. Kettering told a friend that he could make the man buy a pet bird in the coming year. His friend vowed that Kettering could never make him buy a pet bird, so he took the bet.

Soon after, Kettering gave his friend an expensive Swiss birdcage. The man took the beautiful cage home and hung it in his parlour. But interestingly, every time he had guests, someone would ask him, "When did your bird die?" "I never had a bird, he will tell them. Then he would have to explain the whole betting. After doing this repeatedly, he finally went out to buy a parakeet, and finally paying a thousand dollar Kettering bet. Kettering later said, "If you hang birdcages in your mind, you eventually fill them with birds."

As Kettering birdcages attract birds, so too will a designated place to think attract good thoughts. If you go to your sanctum expecting to generate good thoughts, certainly you will meet your expectation by coming up with valuable ideas. For me, the best places to think are in the bathroom, the car or the plane. For some, places to think are in the spa, the park or the shower. When you found a place to think, thoughts find a place in you.

Two, rarely do ideas come fully formed, it is your sanctum that shapes your thoughts. Thoughts have to stand the test of clarity before they can stand. A good way to fine tune your thoughts is to put them in writing. Professor and University vice chancellor, Senator Hayakawa wrote: "Learning to write is learning to think. You don't know anything clearly unless you can state it in writing."

Three, find a place to stretch your thoughts. In order to enliven your imagination and create skills of visualization, you have to spend time mentally shaping your thoughts in solitude. Thereafter test your ideas by asking your mastermind group to fine tune it. A great idea evolves from solitude shaped by the right people in the appropriate environment, bringing out the desired result.

Four, find a place to anchor your thoughts. Thoughts have wings, they needed to be landed and anchored for fruition. The real power of an idea comes when it grows from abstraction to application. A good example is Albert Einstein's theory of relativity. When he published his theory in 1905, explained it in 1916, they were merely profound ideas. Their real power came with the development of the nuclear reactor in 1942 and the nuclear bomb in 1945. When scientists developed and applied Einstein's ideas, they changed the course of world history. Likewise, if you want your thoughts to make impact, you need to anchor them with other people so that someday they can be implemented.

Use yourself and your mastermind group to anchor your ideas. But a good idea is like a wheelbarrow, it will go nowhere unless you push it. If you can develop the discipline of imaginative thinking, and turn it to a life habit, then you will be productive throughout your life. In order for you to become a great thinker you have to expose yourself to good thinkers. This you can do by surrounding yourself with brilliant people. Also you should keep a library of great books. Act on your thoughts. Read other books to nourish your thoughts. Make a priority of thinking as a discipline. Create a thinking schedule. Ideas have a short shelf life, you must act on them before they expire. You cannot wait until you feel like thinking before you think. One thought does not make a thinker, success comes to those who create mountains of thought that they continually mine.

Our champion for today is Oliver Eaton Williamson, the American economist who won the 2009 Nobel Prize in Economics. Williamson was born in September 1932, specializing in transaction cost economics. He received his BS in management from Sloan School of Management, MIT, IN 1955, MBA from Stanford University in 1960 and PhD from Carnegie Mellon University in 1963.

From 1965 to 1983 he was a professor at the University of Pennsylvania. From 1983 to 1988 he was Gordon Tweedy Professor of Economics of Law and Organization at Yale University. He has held professorships in law, business administration, and economics at the University of California, Berkeley since 1988. Currently he is Edgar Kaiser Professor Emeritus at Hans School of Business.

In 2009 Williamson was awarded the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics for his analysis of economic governance, especially the boundaries of the firm, sharing it with Elinor Ostrom. By drawing attention at high theoretical level to differences between market and non-marketing decision making, management and service provision, Williamson has been influential in the debates of the 1980s on the boundaries between the public and private sectors.

Other economists who have tested his theories found them tenable. Williamson had developed a theory where firms served as structures for conflict resolution. He argued that companies represent alternative governance structures which differ in their approaches to resolving conflicts of interes

On the path of winners By Bayo Ogunmupe Acquire skills of the affluent

On the path of winners
 By Bayo Ogunmupe
Acquire skills of the affluent

The value of originative thinking cannot be overstated. It can do many things for you. Originative thinking can generate revenue, solve financial problems and create opportunities for you. It will take you to a new level personally and professionally. It can change your life. Consider these things you need to know about changing your thinking.

One, originative thinking isn't automatic. A change in thinking doesn’t happen on its own. Good ideas rarely go out in search of someone. If you want a good idea, you have to search for it. To become a great thinker, you have to work at it. Once you begin to think originatively, the good ideas keep coming to you. Two, originative thinking is difficult. The only people who believe thinking is easy are those who don't have the habit of good thinking. Nobel Prize winning physicist, Albert Einstein, one of the greatest thinkers who ever lived, asserted, "Thinking is hard work, that's why so few do it."

Three, author of Think and Grow Rich, Napoleon Hill observed_ "More gold has been mined from the thoughts of man than has ever been taken from the earth." When you become an originative thinker, you are investing on yourself. Gold mines tap out, stock markets crash, real estate investments go sour but the originative mind is like the diamond mine which never runs dry.

Four, originative thinking is the best gift you can give others. Well over 90 percent of the human race go through life without originative thinking. Henry Ford stumbled on it, using it to improve not only his own life, but the lives of all in his motor company. Learning to think is the greatest investment you can bestow yourself.

But one person cannot change the life of another. You alone can change your life. Only when you make the right changes in your thinking do other things begin to turn out right! Thus in order to attain what you desire, you must visualize yourself doing it. Otherwise you will never attain what you don't see yourself doing.

As you strive to change your thinking, tell yourself these things. Change is personal so I need to change. Change is possible so I am able to change. And change is profitable so attaining my goal will become the reward of originative thinking. Your old age or circumstances don't affect your adoption of originative thinking. But when you change your thinking, it will change your beliefs. And the corollary to a change in your beliefs is that your expectations will change. Billionaire entrepreneur Richard Devos says that the only obstacle standing between a man and his ambition is often the will to try and the faith to believe that it is possible. Indeed, a belief isn't just an idea you possess. It is an idea that possesses you. Thus, the first and most important step toward success in life is the expectation that we can succeed.

However, changing your expectation changes your attitude. Your expectations have a tremendous impact on your attitude. Negative expectations are a route to failure. Which is why successful people produce excitement, desire, conviction, commitment and confidence. Those are characteristics which help a person to achieve success. What follows is that a change of attitude changes your behaviour. Since moods affect the way you act, when you are happy you exude energy and kindness. Our emotions are driving forces of our lives. What is an attitude? An attitude is the true nature in us. It is the true reflection of our past experience. It is more honest and consistent than our words. Our attitude is the thing that draws people to us or repels them. It is the librarian of our past. It is the prophet of our future. An attitude is a mood or predominant emotion sustained over time. That which holds our attention determines our actions. Your behaviour mirrors your heart.
Changing your behaviour changes your performance. Don't ever be too impressed with your goal; be impressed with your goal getting. Reaching new goals and moving onto higher performance always requires originative changes. But if a change doesn't feel uncomfortable, it isn't really change. And finally, changing your performance changes your life. Progress always requires change. With consistent change in performance, you have the power to change your life. To achieve a change of performance you first change your thinking. You have to think at the level of billionaires in order for you to become a billionaire. If you want to live on a new level, you have to think on a new level. Adopt originative thinking to change your life.

Our champion for today is Elinor Ostrom the American economist who received the 2009 Nobel Prize for Economics for her analysis of economic governance. She was the first and only woman to win the Nobel Prize in this category. Her work was associated with the new institutional economics and marked the resurgence of political economy. Born Elinor Claire Awan in August 1933. She was born in Los Angeles, California, the only child of Leah Hopkins and Adrian Awan. Her father was Jewish while her mother was Protestant. Her parents became poor when her father left her mother.

Ostrom received a B.A honours in Political Science at UCLA in 1954, MA in 1962 and PhD in 1965. She married political scientist Vincent Ostrom in 1963. In 1973, she and her husband founded the Workshop in political Theory and Policy Analysis at Indiana University. The workshop examined the use of collective action, trust and cooperation in the management of common pool resources. Her approach to public policy known as institutional analysis has been considered sufficiently distinct as a separate school of public choice theory. She authored many books in organizational theory, political science and public administration. At Indiana University, Ostrom held the rank of Distinguished professor and was Bentley Professor of Political Science and Co-Director of the workshop. She was also the founding director of the Centre for The Study of Institutional Diversity at Arizona State University.

Ostrom's work emphasized the role of public choice on decisions influencing the production of public goods and service. Her field studies carried her to Africa and irrigation systems management in Nepal. She has argued against any singular panacea for social ecological system problems. In 2009, Ostrom became the first woman to receive the Nobel Prize in Economics for her analysis of economic governance. She shared the award with Oliver Williamson for their separate work on economic governance. Ostrom was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2011 and died of the disease in June 2012, at the age of 78. She was survived by her husband Vincent Ostrom who died shortly afterwards in the same month. On the day of her death, her last article: 'Green from the Grassroots' was published in Project Syndicate.

Ogunmupe: Self - Preserving Habits Of Champions

 Ogunmupe: Self - Preserving Habits Of Champions

IF you can develop your personal vision of wealth, you carefully appreciate your innate gifts, the resources you need will be divinely made available to you right where you are. If you have no goals, you cannot evaluate what you need. For any profit-making venture to blossom, it must be a product or service that repeats. It must be a necessary object of life, for which you are to produce at lower cost. It must be beneficial to a large population. A portrait that will attract investment must be creditworthy. The use of other people’s resources is the key to creating great wealth, however, you must consider paying back with interest. Therefore, you must never borrow to pay expenses in excess of your earnings. Mis-using borrowed money has been the source of misery and penury. Many opportunities to build great wealth have been lost because of breach of agreement. On your road to greatness, you should be prepared for the unexpected. Stranger situations or disasters may prevent plans going the way envisaged. You must face the truth courageously. Otherwise, your integrity is at stake. Beware, for it is the strength of our character that is being tested when things go wrong. Here are some life-saving habits of champions: One, champions gloat on and have undying faith in their own integrity. They are honest to themselves and their group. Which is why you must have a team, mastermind group or think tank. They should not be more than seven and not less than two.
Ability to delegate is the second essential habit of a good leader. Finessing your vision is essential to creating an essential work force for your organization. Thus, trusting your team with your vision is a source of strength. Delegating is an important skill on the path to excellence. Shedding your duties to your teammates enables you to focus on higher tasks that cannot be delegated.
Three, ability to communicate is another acquired skill of champions. The ability to communicate was the over-riding skill that enabled the U.S. Army appoint General David Eisenhower as the commander in chief of Allied forces in Europe during World War II. Eisenhower had an uncanny ability to say succinctly what he wanted done. If you can’t explain your vision to your group, they wont be able to help you. This is why the stock of vocabulary of leaders is always far higher than those of their followers. Also, Eisenhower’s facility with words enabled him to become a two-term president of the United States.
Four, good sense of humor is also a great asset in a leader. Humor boosts morale while morale boosts productivity. By encouraging your team to laugh while working, you are winning effortlessly. Humor entices the worker to the workplace.
Five, confidence keeps you going in a period of depression. Part of your job as a leader is to stoke the fires of ambition by maintaining high morale at all times. By focusing on the higher goal you bind the team together in the period of adversity.
Commitment is the sixth habit of champions. There is no greater motivation than seeing the boss in the trenches working alongside his teammates. It shows hard work is practiced at every level. Thus, commitment to the course is inviolate, commitment also boosts loyalty.
Seven, creativity is an outstanding quality of leadership. Sometimes, you will be forced to deviate from your set plan. Here, creativity will pull you through. It is in such a critical situation that your team will look up to you for a new road map on what to do. This is where your intuition will be needed. Drawing on past experiences is a good reflex here. Reaching out to mentors for support is also useful. Eventually, your decision will make or mar the vision.
Realizing your greatness sometimes involves some forecasting which is why you must inspire your team all of the time. By acknowledging the work of mates you keep the vision moving to the end. The greatest secret of success is that the best way to secure success is to constantly give part of your income away. First, you should give back to the one who blessed you with the wisdom to become rich. Secondly, you should give to the less privileged, for he who gives to the poor lends to their maker, and their maker will surely repay you.
By giving part of your income to God, you are showing your gratitude to the Divine as your partner in your quest for success. And thus you are securing your gifts in an account, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt and where thieves do not break through nor steal”, Matthew 6:20. Moreover that positions you for greater harvests.
Our Champion for today is Kenneth Saul Rogoff, the Thomas Cabot Professor of Economics at Harvard University. He is also a chess grandmaster. Rogoff was born in March 1953 and grew up in New York where his father was professor of Radiology at the University of Rochester.
Rogoff received his BA and MA from Yale University and his PhD in Economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1980. Rogoff learned Chess from his father at the age of six. But he took up the game in earnest when he got a chess set for his 13th birthday. He was soon recognized as a chess prodigy. By the age of 14, he was a master and New York State Open Champion. Shortly after, he became a senior master, the highest U.S National title.
However, at 18, Rogoff decided to make a career in economics. Thereafter, he served as an economist at the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and at the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System.
Rogoff had been Charles Robertson Professor of International Affairs at Princeton University. He later served as Economic Counselor and Director of the Research Department of the IMF from August 2001 to September 2003. His latest book, This Time is Different, which he co-authored with Carmen Reinchart was published in October 2009.

Echoes From The Past… Keeping Nigeria’s Dream Alive

THE book, Echoes from the Past, is a compilation of discourses the author had at various fora on different subjects.
The common denominator of which is that they are matters concerning Nigeria and her peoples.
The welfare and security of Nigerians as the primary concern of government take a leading role in the book. The material location and time schedule are the past, the present and the future.
The author, Prince Tony Momoh began the writing of the book two years before the centenary commemoration of the amalgamation of Nigeria in 1914.
Published only last November, the compilation has 19 chapters spread across 456 pages, an introduction, a preface and an epilogue that chronicles the founding fathers of Nigerian nation.
The author believes that Nigeria does not only have a future, but that it has a mission to raise Africa to the position of a super power in the world, a mission which we all must rally round to fulfill.
The first five chapters delineate the search for a viable unity and ideology for a meaningful polity. They begin with the belief that this country does not only have a future but that Nigeria has a mission for which all of us should play our part in its fulfillment.
The author takes the historical route in chronicling our road to nationhood. Here, the institutions of a democratic state are enumerated, with the legislative arm of government with its oversight functions outlined with alacrity. The people remain sovereign with the press as the watchdog of the people, exposing the usurpation of the rights of the sovereign.
Thus, the three arms of government as enshrined in Chapter Two of the Constitution are examined in detail. Chronicling Nigeria’s attainment of 50 years as an independent nation is the mainstain of chapters six to ten. Within that umbrage is the Nigerian economy at age 50. Momoh addressed our debt problems. It was his own take in 2005 when we were praising President Olusegun Obasanjo for giving the Paris Club of European creditors a whopping $12 billion to buy out $30 billion Nigerian debt of doubtful origin. The author’s opinion was that the loss of $12 billion would lead us to greater problems in the future. That future is now, which is why we are having great problems.
For as at 2012, we are back to owing $5billion to our local people. It is more debilitating to our economy to owe locals than outsiders. With indebtedness to locals, you cripple their businesses with the banks pouncing on their collaterals. The consequences are numerous with employees losing their jobs and their families suffering.
Contained herein are examinations of our 12 years of democracy, Abacha’s vision 2010 and Obasanjo’s National Economic Empowerment and Development Strategy (NEEDS). So far, those measures have failed to address our development challenges.
In the circumstances, Momoh stressed that Nigerian leaders had promoted compromise to an art form. In the event, our leaders have failed to muster the courage with which to tackle our problems.
Here, the author highlights our situational roots. He asserts that a Nigerian must belong to one of the six geo-political zones. He must be either a Christian, Muslim or traditionalist. Every Nigerian belongs to one of the 250 nationalities, 774 local governments, 360 federal constituencies, 36 states or 109 senatorial districts. Chapter10 features the untold story of General Yakubu Gowon, which Momoh packaged in an interview he conducted in 1983 at the London home of the Nigerian leader. The government in power at that time barred its publication, but now you can read it in this compilation.
The next duster of five chapters is 11 to 15. It contains a potpourri of ideas, from the advent of Nollywood through the imperatives of the National Anthem, Nigerian nation state as a failed state and an examination of the rights of women.
Momoh’s belief, as much as mine is that the claim that Nigeria will become a failed state by 2015 is spurious. It lacked both proof as well as spiritual foundation. He dismissed the belief that nations can just evolve without divine inaction. It isn’t so. He argued that Nigeria was created for a purpose by God and expressed the optimism that the country would thrive to attain her God-giving destiny of leading Africa into a quartet of world super-powers, coming after China, the Organization of American States and the European Union.
Momoh’s Dialogue with the Deaf scripted in chapter 16 will interest readers. If we have been told for years of what went wrong in Nigeria, what to do to right the wrongs of our history, but we are still persisting in wrongdoing, widening our road to perdiction, then we may seek rectitude by other means. The offer to rectify Nigerian dream gone awry is a most telling piece of the compilation.
In 2000, the author met Olusegun Obasanjo and discussed mobilizing the country for development. The ensuing programme became constituency projects. Unfortunately, these laudable projects are now being bastardised by legislators who believe that monies voted for such projects are meant to be spent without accountability.
Chapter 19 is a piece on Barack Hussein Obama, the President of the United States who assumed his second term as U.S President just last month after an exciting presidential election victory. The piece is to show the developing world an example of how seek and appropriate power. Obama depicts a person who knew what he wanted in life, worked to achieve it. It goes to show America as an environment that gave the dreamer the opportunity to fulfill his dream.
In the end, Echoes is a reminder of what Nigerians have been through from which we must draw lessons that should help us take the future into our hands. Nigeria did not exist by accident; God has a plan for her. As we go through it, we must leave milestones that are good for others to live by.
The most salutary aspect of this book is its outline of economic and social plans for Nigeria. Nigeria has experimented with governmental models except socialism; has more constitutions than any country. This book contains all the social plans, the rolling plans, the policy plans, particularly, the contents of the National Open Apprenticeship Scheme for the country. Much of the contents of Echoes are first time in
This book is as unique as the experience of its author, a journalist, lawyer, former Minister of Information and Culture and politician. A prince of Auchi in Edo State, Tony Momoh was educated at the University of Nigeria Nsukka, the University of Lagos and the Nigerian Law School, Lagos. He was Minister of information (1986-90). Before then he had worked in the Daily Times as Editor, General Manager and Chairman, National Registration Council, Nigeria Union of Journalists.
Momoh has published many books on media, law and politics. He is the Yerima of Auchi Kingdom and National Chairman, Congress for Progressive Change (CPC). The gist of this book is that we must first build the Nigerian if we must build an enduring Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Ogunmupe: Take charge of your life


DO you feel you no longer control your own life? That life is running you instead of you running it? That happens because you are on the passenger’s seat, conforming to people, events and circumstances. They are in the driver’s seat, not you. No wonder your frustration level is high, and your contentment level is low. “Don’t let the world squeeze you into its own mould,” (Romans 12:2). If you are feeling squeezed, you have two options:
One, remain a conformer or become a transformer. You either choose to stay in the passenger seat or you get behind the wheel. The Bible says, “Do not be conformed to this world,” (Romans 12:2). Therefore, be transformed into the proactive, faith- driven person Jehovah meant you to be.
Two, take charge of your life by renewing your mind through study and meditation. Instead of struggling to change people and circumstances around you, change how you think and your self-talk. To renew in Greek means to align your thoughts with God’s. Abandon your self-defeating thoughts, adopt the  “can do” spirit. Jehovah says, “You are, you can and you certainly will be able to,” because of His indwelling power.   John writes: “This is the victory that conquers the world our faith,” (John 5:4). Go to God’s word, discover what He says about the things that intimidate and control you, then pull the plug on them. The message to you today is, “Don’t be afraid, I am your God I will make you strong, I will support you,” (Isaiah 41:10). Align your thoughts with God’s thoughts. Get to the driver’s seat and take charge of your life.
We don’t hear of Abraham Lincoln’s failures because his victories were so immense. Indeed, for much of his life, the odds were stacked against him. His mother died when he was nine. In 1832, he lost an election to the Illinois State Assembly. In 1849 he was rejected as Commissioner for Lands. He lost Senate races in 1855 and 1858, and in between failed to win a vice presidential nomination.
However, his most painful losses were the death of his four-year-old and twelve-year-old sons. Born in the bushes of Kentucky, Lincoln had only a few months of blab school, that’s a school without books in which students repeated the teacher’s words. He taught himself mathematics, read the classics and worked on his writing, using the bible as his model. His philosophy was: “I will study and prepare, and when the time comes I will be ready.” He told a friend, “Bear in mind, your own resolution to succeed is more important than any other one thing.” His Gettysburg Address is one of the most notable speeches in history.
During the darkest days of the Civil War, he said, “I do the very best I know how, and I mean to keep on doing it to the end.”
Like Lincoln, Saint Paul didn’t say, “None of these things hurt me,” he said, “None of these things move me.” Big difference. Paul refuses to let life’s problems derail him. He understood that what happens in you is more important than what happens to you. He also understood that when you look to Jehovah as your model and draw strength from the Almighty each day, He will give you all that is needed to overcome adversity.
Finally, “And David said, with longing, ‘oh that someone would give me water from the well of Bethlehem’.” So three mighty men broke through the Philistines’ camp, drew water from the well, gave to David. But he would not drink it (2Samuel 23:15). The lessons here are, one, you must surround yourself with capable people. Beware of those who are only for what they can get out of you. But David’s followers had only one thing in mind: to serve their king and promote his kingdom.
Two, you must refuse to settle for less than the best. The men risked their lives to get David a cup of water. Yet David poured it on the ground before the Almighty, saying: I refuse to settle for a cup, I want the well. I must be connected to the life source. So, stop treating God like a caretaker you call when you are in a mess. Don’t go to God for a miracle, go for a relationship, become God’s friend, then you can walk in His miraculous provisions daily. “He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty,” Psalm 91:1. Instead of commuting in and out, stay in contact with God and all that he has will be available to you.
Our champion today is Edmund Phelps, the American economist who won the 2006 Nobel Prize for Economics. He was awarded the prize for his thesis, which intensified our understanding of he relation between short-run and Long-run  effects of economic policy. His works clarify unemployment problems.
Phelps was born in July 1933 in Evanston, Illinois, USA, but he was raised in Hastings, News York. In 1951 he was admitted as an undergraduate to read Economics in Amherst College. During this time, he was influenced by prospects of applying analysis to business. He graduated from Amherst in 1955 and shifted to Yale University where he got his PhD in 1959. In Yale, he interacted with Nobel laureates like James Tobin and Thomas Schelling. His thesis established that demand shocks have the higher influence than cost shocks.
Thereafter, Phelps worked briefly with the Rand Corporation. But soon after, he returned to academics to be more focused on research. His brief sojourn at the Cowles Corporation in 1960 produced his famous paper on savings rate. In 1996, Phelps joined the University of Pennsylvania as professor and his 1968 paper on Money-Wage Dynamics and Labour Market Equilibrium was published.
In 1982, Phelps was appointed the Mc Vickar Professor of Political Economy at Columbia University, New York. The book he published there in 1985: Political Economy formed the basis for which he was awarded the Nobel Prize in 2006.

Ogunmupe: How To Cultivate Good Thinking

IT is good to embrace good thinking as a lifestyle for your level of thinking determines your level of progress in life. For you to change your life, you must change your way of thinking. Your life today is the result of your past thinking. Your tomorrow is determined by how you think today.
If you change your thinking, you can change your feeling. Through changing your feelings, you change your actions. And new actions based on good thinking can change your life. Many educators would have us believe that good education leads to a better life and the more formal education you have, the more successful you will be.      Unfortunately, education cannot always deliver on such promises. The bulk of the world’s great achievers are school dropouts —- Bill Gates, Thomas Edison and Steve Jobs are examples.
Two delusions about higher education are that what is taught is what is learned and that this will pay off in money. But the problem is that schools teach people what to think not how to think. But knowledge alone is not power. Knowledge has value only in the hands of a good thinker. You must learn to think creatively to achieve your dreams. What you think determines what you become.
Here are three ways to cultivate creative thinking. One, creative thinking creates good results. The quality of your thinking determines the quality of your results. Poor thinking produces poor results. Average thinking results in failure. Creative thinking produces progress. Great thinking produces great results. The reason people fail is that they desire success without changing their thinking. You need to visualize success before you can succeed. Successful business people have succeeded through their thinking. Their hands were helpers to their brains.
As your thinking shapes your life, it follows that your success is determined by your creativity. As you think creatively, you will discover that thinking for a change does not tell you what to think; it teaches you how to think. As you get acquainted with the skill of creative thinking, you will find that in certain circumstances, you think well, but in others you don’t. Learn to develop creative thinking and you will become a better thinker.
Learn all that you can -- including the process of shared thinking, which compensates for your weak areas and your life will change for the better. I once read that the battle for the control of the world has always been waged most effectively at the idea level. An idea, whether right or wrong, that captures the minds of a nation’s youth will soon work its way into every area of society. In our multimedia age, ideas determine consequences.
Achieving your potentials comes from good thinking. That was certainly true of Sam Walton, the founder of Wal-Mart. He explains: “In all my years, what I heard more often than anything was: ‘a town of less than 50, 000 in population cannot support a discount store for very long.’” But Walton did not think along the line of his competitors. And for that reason, he struck a greater potential, while others followed popular thinking, Walton thought creatively. That paid up in a remarkable way. Today, Wal-Mart is the world’s largest retailer, employing more than one million people and achieving annual sales in excess of $191 billion.
Every week, over 100 million customers visit Wal-Mart store. No wonder, Jack Welch, former chairman of US General Electric, said, “The hero is the one with Ideas.” The greatest detriment to your success tomorrow is your jaded thinking today.     Achievements come from the habit of good thinking. The more good thinking you gain, more good thoughts you create. It is like creating a never-ending army of ideas capable of achieving almost anything. As French playwright, Victor Hugo, asserted: “An invasion of armies can be resisted, but not an invasion of ideas.” How was the typewriter able to resist the desktop computer?
Our champion for today is Leonid Hurwicz, the polish American economist and mathematician of Jewish descent who won the 2007 Nobel Memorial Prize for economics for having laid the foundation of mechanism design theory. He originated incentive compatibility, which shows how desired outcomes are achieved in economics, social science and political science. Interaction of individuals and institutions, markets and trade are analyzed and understood today using the models Hurwicz developed. Leonid Hurwicz is the oldest Nobel Laureate, having received the prize at the age of 90.
Born in Moscow in August 1917. Hurwicz died in June 2008. He was encouraged by his father to study law; in 1938 Hurwicz received his LLM from the University of Warsaw where he found his future vocation in the economics class. He then studied economics at the London school of Economics, leaving without a degree. He also studied at the Graduate Institute of International Studies In Geneva.
After moving to the United State, he continued his Studies at Harvard and the University of Chicago. He had no degree in economics, saying in 2007: “Whatever economics I learned, I learned by listening and learning. In 1941 Hurwicz was a research assistant at M.I.T, and in 1945 he received a Guggenheim Fellowship becoming associate professor of economics at Iowa State College. In 1951 he became a research professor of economics at the University of Illinois.
Named for Hurwicz was the Hurwicz Criterion in the area of decision making called “under uncertainty”
There is also the Leonid Hurwicz Distinguished Lecture delivered yearly at Minnesota Economic Association. Finally was the Nobel Prize in Economics  which he shared with Eric Maskin and Roger Myerson. When asked which of all the applications of mechanism design he was most pleased to see, Hurwicz said welfare economics. He applied games theory to discover the best and most efficient means to reach a desired outcome, taking into consideration the individual’s knowledge and self interest. Owing to his old age, the prize was delivered to him in the U.S.A, in company of Evelyn, his spouse of 60 years.

Ogunmupe: How To Attract Your Desires

IT is important that you understand that you have within yourself the power to attract the objects of you desire. Being able to attract your desires seems more likely when you consider how things are created from the spirit world into this material world
In an intriguing sentence in the bible, Saint Paul addresses the process of creation. He said; “Things which are seen are not made of things which do appear.” Paul was telling that the creative energy is neither solid nor restricted. The physical world of form originates from something other than form itself, although we know it is all one world.
Paul’s word form the basis for this piece, Paul’s belief suggests how energy inform our ability to attract what we desire. Saint Paul is giving us a clue about manifesting our desire into the world of matter.
Every human has the force called energy. Energy is in all things and it has an impact upon objects, which we can describe as attraction. In magnetic fields, we can easily see it at work. This force is there, attracting and repelling. It is everywhere on the planet.
The essence of this is that we can utilize this force of attraction for our own good. Because the energy of attraction which is in what we desire is also in us it becomes a matter of alignment and the will that allows us to tap into this force. Thus we can use this universal force of attraction to obtain our wishes.
Because there is no difference in the power that bring anything from the world to waves into the world of particles, so, the power that brings your thoughts or mental pictures visualizations into form can be used to attract your wishes.
To put this into perspective, think of manifesting or transforming waves of possibilities into particles of reality. Your thoughts and visualizations are your sources of manifesting your desires to reality. By visualizing, you are activating the force of attraction to work for you. The manifesting process is achievable when you are in a state of complete faith. Your subconscious knows you can attract what you desire with this energy.
Your power to form pictures in your mind is a mighty force. The mental-picturing power is the energy of attraction, the creative process possessed by all humans. This power of attraction is the very substance of life. By using this power, you are not in any way interfering with the laws of nature. This power is the mysterious attraction that draws your desires to you.
This power of attraction thrives on happiness, love, joy, contentment and peace. The more blissful and loving you are, the more the divine spirit particularizes within you and the more Godlike you become. Your thoughts have creative power of attraction and if your mental pictures are conditions that you desire, and they are rooted in joy and faith, your creative thoughts will attract these things and conditions into your life.
The most important thing for you to remember is that as you practice mental picturing for the purposes of manifesting your desires is that humans never create. We are not to create, but to attract, combine and distribute.
However, there is one indispensable condition for the manifestation of that picture in your mind into the visible and concrete world. That condition is that the picture must either be formed here and now or not at all. Once you understand the necessity of picturing the fulfillment of your desire as if it is already accomplished on the spiritual plane, that means if the end is secured the means is also handled and you let go, knowing that success is guaranteed.
Indeed, the more you do this mental picturing with faith and enthusiasm, the more you are to see it manifesting. You re to visualize in detail what it is that you want to manifest. You detach your self from the outcome and how it will be accomplished. It isn’t your business to create. Just see in great detail what it is that you want, repeatedly affirming this picture with faith, then you will see it manifest to reality.
Thus, the key to your success is to repeat these mental pictures until your desire manifests without an ounce of doubt. The best times for visualizing are early in the morning and just before retiring at night.
When it appears visualizing isn’t working, note the following anomalies. One, you must give adequate time for your wishes to flourish. Two, the frequency with which you are changing your picture affects the materialization of your wishes. Success is predicated on a dedicated and consistent mental picturing. Three, your power of attraction is most effectively done in privacy. Never confide your ambition on anyone. It is a violation of your sacred trust to talk to others about your ambition. Talking to others weakens your power to attract good fortune. Maintain utmost privacy concerning your power to attract to you what you desire.
Our champion today is Paul the Apostle. Paul also known as Saint Paul and Saul of Tarsus was born in AD5 and died AD67 he is the most influential Christian missionary and leader of the first generation of Christians. Saint Paul is considered the greatest Christian religious leader of all time. He authored half of the New Testament Bible. He was responsible for spreading the Gospel throughout the Roman Empire.
Paul was a native of Tarsus, the capital of Cilicia, in Present day Turkey. He was a Greek speaking Jew who grew up in Jerusalem where he studied under Gamaliel a famous rabbi and the leading authority in the Sanhedrin. For half of his life he was a Pharisee, a Jewish faction noted for strict or thodoxy and formalism.
Before becoming a follower of Jesus, Paul was a zealous persecutor of Christian. While travelling from Jerusalem to Damascus, the resurrected Jesus appeared to him in a great light, which blinded him for three days. His sight was restored by Ananias of Damascus, Paul’s conversion changed the course of world history. Thirteen epistles in the New Testament are attributed to Paul.
Augustine of Hippo developed Paul’s idea that salvation is based on faith and not on works of the law, Paul’s writings heavily influenced Martin Luther while the influence of Paul’s writings on Christian thinking has been profound-because Paul championed the spreading of Christianity throughout the Roman Empire. While struggling to validate his own worth and authority, Paul was esteemed as one of the leader of Christianity. The Bible did not record Paul’s death but Ignatius of Antioch noted about the year 110 that Paul died in Rome in the year AD67. He was Christianity’s greatest organizer.

Ogunmupe: Courage As Catalyst Of Sucess

COURAGE is crucial to success in life. Many have beautiful life- transforming dreams, which they cannot actualize due to lack of courage. Courage is essential to the realization of your ambition. It is the principal requirement for greatness. It is the quality Joshua and Caleb possessed that enabled them give a positive report on the Promised Land, even though the giants (Anakim) were there.
The two weapons Satan uses against aspirants are cowardice and inferiority complex. Enemies make you see in terrifying details why you cannot make it in life. The devil shows you your peers who have failed, telling you the apparent folly of ever trying. Thus, mustering courage alone can see you through to greatness. Courage impels you to confront and conquer. Until you decide to confront whatever giant is standing in your way, you cannot conquer it. Therefore, every conquest is heralded by a confrontation. And to do that you need courage.
Courage inspires confrontation. Thus if you must be a conqueror, you must have courage. The moment you lose courage, you have lost the battle. Weapons are useless without courage. But with courage and correct weapons you will win your way to greatness. A feeble heart produces week hands and weary knees. Apart from courage another requirement for victory is facing the enemies eyeball to eyeball. Never cower before the enemy, because God is with you.
George and Helen Jesze, the authors of the book Born to Win, said, “We cannot discover new world until we have the courage to lose sight of the shore. We cannot walk on the water until we get out of the boat.” Whoever restrains you from a fight, has robbed you of your crown. Don’t always seek to maintain the status quo, rather go for something new. If you must choose a company to belong to, choose the company of the courageous. Courage is requirement for stardom. Courage was what transferred Saul’s throne and crown to David. The valiant always have the crowns of others added to theirs.
Muster courage to take charge. “Deal courageously, and the Lord shall be with you,” 2Chronicles 19:11. Courage compels God to assist you.
The natural way to think is that if God says He is with you, then your victory is certain. However God went on to show Joshua that all the promises He had made to him will still elude him, if he lacked courage, thus the guarantee for prosperity is courage. Courage grants you the confidence to declare your wishes.
Here are three pillars of courage; one recognizes the force of courage. Simply defined, courage is an untiring, invincible, undefeatable attitude in life. The man of courage is neither hindered by the environment nor truckle to the multitude. It is also the ability to face opposition, obstacles, hardship and difficulties. It is the ability to pursue one’s goals in spite of all terror. Nothing intimidates a man of courage. He neither requires outside help nor inspiration to keep going.
Courage does not count the number of falls one had. It only looks forward to more opportunities of success; risk taking is the preoccupation of champions.   Abraham had courage to move from the known to the unknown. It took courage for him to go to Mount Moriah where God instructed him to go and sacrifice his son, Isaac, trekking three days to get there. Yet Abraham complied with Jehovah’s order. The risk-free life is the abode of mediocrity. Every move into a higher plane involves sacrifice and courage.
Two, since you need courage in order to get to the top, you need to boost it in you at every stage of your life.  When you are going into battle or going into a new venture what you need for success is a reflection of your past victories. Thank God for them and tell him you are sure He will give you yet another victory. That is a way of boosting courage in you. Testimonies are ways of turning on the courage in you.
Goliath had kept Israel in bondage for 40 days. His taunts had reduced Israelites to vegetables. Saul, the King had lost his backbone. Suddenly came a tendril, a 17-year-old David, speaking with the boldness of a lion. “Let no man’s heart fail because of him (Goliath); thy servant will go and fight with this Philistine”, 1 Sam17: 33.
If success is the product of experience, then Saul should have stood against Goliath. Abner, a renowned warrior, was also present; yet they were paralyzed by fear. Beware of your advisers; reasons advanced by them may exclude God, leading you to failure. Always make Jehovah your partner in every circumstance.
Saul was operating as the Commander-in-Chief, but David operated as a priest. That was why David could say; “the Lord that delivered me out of the paw of the lion and out of the paw of the bear, He will deliver me out of this Philistine,” 1sam. 17:37. David’s testimony of the lion and the bear is how he turned on the courage in him. Courage will spring out of you when you provoke it by remembering former acts of God in your life “For as a man thinketh in his heart, so is he,” pro 23:7.
Other factors that enhance and boost your courage are knowing the direction of your life, making God your partner and your self worth. By regarding yourself as the greatest entrepreneur of your age, you align with your subconscious for success.
Having now a good image of your speeches. Learn to boast in Jehovah as God’s friend. Medical science has proved that the body responds to speech. So, call forth God’s assistance as Jehovah’s friend. You gain speedy fulfillment of your wishes by speaking out, declaring your wishes openly. Until you keep quiet, you cannot fail. Openly declare your expectations, what you say is what you get, Num. 14:28. Your speech creates your future. Let your speech carry the tone of a conqueror, and you are bound to win. Until you are ready to do what nobody has ever done, you cannot get what no one has never got. Accomplishment is not by accident. Success isn’t by chance. What you don’t pursue you cannot possess.
Our champion for today is Robert John Aumann, the Israeli-American mathematician who  received the 2005 Nobel Memorial prize in Economics for his work on conflict and cooperation through game-theory analysis. He shared the prize with Thomas Schelling; Aumann was born in June 1930 in Frankfurt, Germany. He fled to the United States with his family in 1938, graduating from the City College of New York in 1950; he received his PhD in mathematics in 1955 from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
In 1956, Aumann joined the Mathematics Department of Hebrew University of Jerusalem and has been a visiting professor at Stony Brook University since 1989. His greatest contribution has been in games theory. Aumann was the first to define the concept of correlated equilibrium. He is also known for his agreement theorem in which he argues that under given conditions, two rationalists with common prior beliefs cannot agree to disagree.
Aumann also asserts that simplistic peacemaking can cause war while arms race, credible war threats and destruction can reliably prevent war. As a member of Professors for Strong Israel, Aumann opposed the disengagement from Gaza in 2005, claiming it poses a serious threat to the security of Israel. Aumann married Esther Schlesinger in 1955, they had five children. Esther died of ovarian cancer in 1998. In 2005, Aumann married Esther’s widowed sister, Batya Cohn. Aumann is still active as professor at the centre for the study of Rationality at Jerusalem, Israel. He is aged 82.