Posted by Dene Hadden on Oct 30, 2018
SPOKES VOL. LXV NO. 18                                                                               October 30, 2018
Deb Davidson and Scott Smith were our greeters this very fall-like morning.
President Mark Odland opened today’s meeting with “America the Beautiful” and Art Ayers provided an invocation including our prayers for the victims of the shootings in Pittsburg, Julie Weber, Missy Thompson, and Don Hixson.
No guests this morning in spite of our reputation as a delightful way to begin your Tuesday mornings.
No spotlight this morning although we did get a nice thank you from the Friends of the Blue Star Trail for our donation to their project.
  • Bob Copping announced that decorating the bridge for Christmas will happen at noon on Thursday including, possibly, lights.
  • Mark reminded us that the Blessings in a Backpack helpers should be at Lincoln School, 1:15 PM on Friday.
  • Jean Stein will miss a couple of weeks of our meetings due to surgery on Friday.  Our thoughts and prayers go with her.
  • On December 11th we will be having our annual Christmas get together, location to be announced.
  • Rhonda indicated that she had visited Don Hixson at Bronson/Pipp in Plainwell and he seems to be struggling a bit more than when Bob Copping visited him last week.  Visiting hours are 8:30 AM to 8:30 PM.
  • The Elks will be hosting a Veteran’s day dinner on November 11th from 1:00 to 5:00 PM.  Veterans eat free, other adults are $10.00 and kids are $6.00
  • The first “Back Door Dinner at the Congregational Church” that we are scheduled to work is Thursday, November 15th.
  • December 18th is the Rotary Open Door Christmas Dinner at the Methodist Church and all are invited to come and help serve.
  • Got your warm clothes?  We are scheduled to Ring the Bell for the Salvation Army on December 22nd.
Jim Davis was our song leader today as we tackled three patriotic songs.We began with a rousing version of “I’m a Yankee Doodle Dandy” which many mistakenly think dates back to Revolutionary War.Instead, this song comes from the 1904 musical “Little Johnny Jones” by George M Cohen.We followed that with “You’re a Grand Old Flag”, another George M Cohen song from the 1906 musical “George Washington Jr”.We finished with “All Hail to Rotary” which is based on the U S Navy fight song, “Anchors Aweigh”, also written in 1906.
Dene Hadden and Tony Martorano had the lucky ticket (They combine resources to purchase three tickets each week).  Dene had the shorter walk to the table but also drew the shorter card, coming up with the 10 rather than the more lucrative 2 or 4.  Steve Larsen was the big winner, taking home $2.
  • Jerry Portman is celebrating his Son-In-Laws birthday this week.
  • Tom Fleming remembered that his daughter Cymbre has a birthday this week.
  • Don Kitchin is pleased to have his son home from New Zeeland for five days.
  • Tom Renner noted that the Bears are in first place for the time being.
  • Larry Wittkop said:  Go MSU and Rocky!
  • Don’t forget that Big 10 Tuesday has commenced and you can save $.10 a gallon on gas from now through basketball season.
  • Bob Boerma traded a happy buck for a big buck – he hopes – at deer camp.
  • Jerry Gruber will miss deer camp this year as he is traveling to Hawaii to take a hula dancing lesson.
  • President Odland was heartily thanked for inviting us to his home to help him consume leftover beer and wine from Haven Harvest.
Our speaker today was our own Paul Hix and a market update.
Paul indicated that it is a crazy time in the market and economy right now, but economic growth continues at a steady rate and inflation appears to be in check.
The inflation check is based on strong oil production in the United States and lower wage growth due to production efficiencies caused by automation. In addition, the FED is slowly raising interest rates.
Paul cited that one of the biggest problems facing the country is the separation occurring between the haves and have-nots in the country.  A worker with only a high school education can expect to make only about $35,000 a year while those with an advanced degree (Masters or above) can expect to make $92,000 or more.  It was mentioned later that someone with a high school education and skills training in or after high school can make as much as a college graduate or more.
Paul reminded us to always expect market corrections and they occur regularly by as much as 20%.
The stock market is driven by certainty and it is not always important what is certain, just that companies can plan a strategy based on the political reality that exists.
As always, having a balanced portfolio is key to surviving the ups and downs that occur.
Paul mentioned that what is likely is that China will overtake the US in economic production in the 2020’s even with a shaky banking system.  As we negotiate trade deals with China, a key piece is intellectual property rights and being a strong partner with other countries in the Pacific Rim will keep us in a position of strength.
Paul finished by reminding us to make sure we have a current durable power of attorney and updated trust and medical documents.
Mark Odland thanked Paul for is informative and optimistic report and presented him with our speaker’s pen.
President Odland closed the meeting with the Four Way Test
Next week’s program: Bob Boerma will introduce Sarah Dempsey, Executive Director of Citizens Mediation Services.
Next week’s Greeters:  Bob Copping and Don Hodgman
Editarian:  Dene Hadden