DERAILERS

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The purpose of this page is to help prepare teenagers and young adults for success in life. At the outset, I wish to emphasize that there is nothing at all wrong with having fun and enjoying life. At the same time, self-discipline is an essential component to success in life. You cannot allow yourself to become so distracted by the various temptations in life to the point that it causes you to lose sight of the big picture. In terms of success in life for teenagers and young adults, the big picture is this: As you travel down the road of life, you always should strive for self-improvement and progress, not self-destruction and regression. You should strive for societal civility by abiding by the rule of just law. One way to achieve societal civility is to elevate your conduct to the highest ethical plane. The long-term, future goal for humankind is to achieve something akin to Heaven on Earth for the living to enjoy each day rather than a life of living Hell on Earth.

DERAILED, OR A SAD BEGINNING

The two photos below depict a derailed train. They are meant to illustrate how you, too, can become derailed in your quest for success as you travel down the road of life. As children travel down the road of life, and as they move from the teenage to the young adulthood stage in life, they are likely to encounter many temptations along the way. These temptations or derailers will entice them to engage in counter-productive pursuits.

Report 143 of the Major Fires Investigation Project | Amtrak Tram Derailment |NODAWAY, IOWA |MARCH 17, 2001 | Aerial view of wreckageReport 143 of the Major Fires Investigation Project | Amtrak Tram Derailment |NODAWAY, IOWA |MARCH 17, 2001 | Photo of one of the wrecked cars (a double decker)
Images Credit: U.S. Fire Administration/Technical Report Series | Amtrak Train Derailment | Nodaway, Iowa | USFA-TR-143/March 2001

The number one priority of teenagers should be to obey their parents. The number two priority of teenagers should be to obtain a good education. The number three priority of teenagers should be to engage in wholesome, clean-cut extracurricular kinds of activities. Above all, teenagers must learn to treat one another with courtesy and respect regardless of ethnicity, race, gender, religion, and so forth. Unlike the two photos above, your objective is to not become derailed as you travel down the road of life.



REMEMBER THE PAST, BUT ALWAYS PREPARE FOR THE FUTURE

It is very important to remember what took place in the past or what took place in history. It often is stated that "those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it". It is equally important—or even more important—to prepare for the future. There is an idiom that says "the only ones who plan for failure are those who fail to plan." In other words, with a few exceptions, success in life will not be handed to you on a silver platter. You have to go into the broader society, study hard to get a good education or work hard to master a specific skill, and secure your lawful job niche in the global economy. One key to success in life is to make wise choices as you travel down the road of life.

Say, for instance, you plan to take a cross-country driving trip from the city of Los Angeles to the city of Boston (USA). Typically, you would not get into your vehicle and aimlessly start driving without giving the trip a second thought. Typically, you would plan the trip. You would consult a map, an online driving directions service, or a GPS device to plan your travel route. The key is to plan your trip so that you do not get lost or otherwise accidentally find your traveling down the wrong road and never reaching your intended destination. A similar concept applies to teenagers as they travel down the road of life. Teenagers have to plan for success in life so that they do not accidentally end up traveling down one of those counter-productive roads. The next photo is meant to depict the road of life. Which path will you choose to follow?

Federal Highway Administration | Sustainable Highways Initiative | Report: Advancing a Sustainable Highway System - Highlights of FHWA Sustainability Activities Image Credit: Federal Highway Administration | Sustainable Highways Initiative | Report: Advancing a Sustainable Highway System - Highlights of FHWA Sustainability Activities

What is the key to success in life? How do you avoid being derailed? How do you avoid taking the wrong road? There is no infallible answer to these questions. You can, however, take steps to help ensure that you succeed in life. One step to take or one key to success is to strive to make wise choices. You have to choose to embrace productive traits. These productive traits include things such as civility, courtesy, decorum, fairness, honesty, industriousness, scholarship, lawful conduct, ethical conduct, responsible conduct, peaceful demeanor, self-discipline, self-improvement, self-respect, self-sufficiency, tolerance, kindness, being respectful of others, being respectful of the property of others, being respectful of the sanctity of human life, being a seeker of knowledge and wisdom, and so forth.

You have to choose to avoid counter-productive traits. These counter-productive traits include things such as anarchy or lawlessness, constant bickering and fighting, bullying, cheating, corruption, debauchery, deception, destruction of property, prejudice, bigotry, discrimination, racism, hatred, violence, disrespect, substance abuse, extortion, fraud, gunplay, looting, torture, murder, and so forth. Some common [USA] teenage derailers include:

Another key to success in life is to be cognizant of how you spend your time. When you have a productive day scheduled, it does not leave a lot of room for you to get into devilment. When engaged in productive pursuits, there is not a whole lot of time remaining in the day for you to get into trouble with the law. The following table depicts how a busy, productive day is spent by the typical household.

Daily Schedule (Excludes Saturday and Sunday)
Count Start Time End Time Duration (Hours: Minutes) Whole Minutes Activity
1 6:00 AM 6:30 AM 0:30 30 Bathing (hygiene), grooming, and getting dressed for school or work
2 6:30 AM 7:00 AM 0:30 30 Bathing (hygiene), grooming, and getting dressed for school or work
3 7:00 AM 7:30 AM 0:30 30 Eating breakfast
4 7:30 AM 8:00 AM 0:30 30 Commuting to school or work
5 8:00 AM 8:30 AM 0:30 30 School or work activities
6 8:30 AM 9:00 AM 0:30 30 School or work activities
7 9:00 AM 9:30 AM 0:30 30 School or work activities
8 9:30 AM 10:00 AM 0:30 30 School or work activities
9 10:00 AM 10:30 AM 0:30 30 School or work activities
10 10:30 AM 11:00 AM 0:30 30 School or work activities
11 11:00 AM 11:30 AM 0:30 30 School or work activities
12 11:30 AM 12:00 PM 0:30 30 School or work activities
13 12:00 PM 12:30 PM 0:30 30 Eating lunch
14 12:30 PM 1:00 PM 0:30 30 School or work activities
15 1:00 PM 1:30 PM 0:30 30 School or work activities
16 1:30 PM 2:00 PM 0:30 30 School or work activities
17 2:00 PM 2:30 PM 0:30 30 School or work activities
18 2:30 PM 3:00 PM 0:30 30 School or work activities
19 3:00 PM 3:30 PM 0:30 30 School or work activities
20 3:30 PM 4:00 PM 0:30 30 School or work activities
21 4:00 PM 4:30 PM 0:30 30 School or work activities
22 4:30 PM 5:00 PM 0:30 30 Commuting home
23 5:00 PM 5:30 PM 0:30 30 Cooking/preparing for dinner
24 5:30 PM 6:00 PM 0:30 30 Eating dinner
25 6:00 PM 6:30 PM 0:30 30 Free time (homework, housework, chores, socializing, relaxing, etc.)
26 6:30 PM 7:00 PM 0:30 30 Free time (homework, housework, chores, socializing, relaxing, etc.)
27 7:00 PM 7:30 PM 0:30 30 Free time (homework, housework, chores, socializing, relaxing, etc.)
28 7:30 PM 8:00 PM 0:30 30 Free time (homework, housework, chores, socializing, relaxing, etc.)
29 8:00 PM 8:30 PM 0:30 30 Free time (homework, housework, chores, socializing, relaxing, etc.)
30 8:30 PM 9:00 PM 0:30 30 Free time (homework, housework, chores, socializing, relaxing, etc.)
31 9:00 PM 9:30 PM 0:30 30 Free time (homework, housework, chores, socializing, relaxing, etc.)
32 9:30 PM 10:00 PM 0:30 30 Free time (homework, housework, chores, socializing, relaxing, etc.)
33 10:00 PM 10:30 PM 0:30 30 Sleeping
34 10:30 PM 11:00 PM 0:30 30 Sleeping
35 11:00 PM 11:30 PM 0:30 30 Sleeping
36 11:30 PM 12:00 AM 0:30 30 Sleeping
37 12:00 AM 12:30 AM 0:30 30 Sleeping
38 12:30 AM 1:00 AM 0:30 30 Sleeping
39 1:00 AM 1:30 AM 0:30 30 Sleeping
40 1:30 AM 2:00 AM 0:30 30 Sleeping
41 2:00 AM 2:30 AM 0:30 30 Sleeping
42 2:30 AM 3:00 AM 0:30 30 Sleeping
43 3:00 AM 3:30 AM 0:30 30 Sleeping
44 3:30 AM 4:00 AM 0:30 30 Sleeping
45 4:00 AM 4:30 AM 0:30 30 Sleeping
46 4:30 AM 5:00 AM 0:30 30 Sleeping
47 5:00 AM 5:30 AM 0:30 30 Sleeping
48 5:30 AM 6:00 AM 0:30 30 Sleeping
Total     24:00 1,440  

If you followed a daily schedule similar to the one outlined in the above table, then your time will have been spent productively. There would not be a lot of free time remaining for you to get into mischief. If you patterned your daily routines after the above schedule, generally speaking, then the only way for you to get into trouble with the law would be for you to go looking for trouble. You have to strive to avoid making unwise choices.

The situation changes dramatically on your days off from work or school—or if you do not have a job or do not attend school. On weekends, for instance, except time set aside for sleeping, your entire schedule becomes free time. Weekends generally are reserved for activities such as relaxing, watching television, surfing the World Wide Web, engaging in recreational activities such as skiing and camping, playing amateur sports, partying, taking short out-of-town getaway trips, socializing and shopping with friends, visiting family members, running errands, doing household chores such an cleaning and gardening, attending church or going to the museum, eating at a restaurant with the family, attending concerts and sporting events, going to the movies or theater, and so forth. Problems usually arise when some members of society choose to spend their waking hours engaged in little more than counter-productive pursuits. A daily regimen such as the one outlined in the above table contributes to achieving structure and self-discipline in your life.

Numerous applications are available in the economic marketplace to help you better manage your time, stay organized, and remain focused on more productive pursuits as you travel down the road of life. These applications run the gamut from those with few features to those with a host of features. A few of these applications include:

Smartphones typically have similar task-management and time-management applications built into them. For those who use the Firefox web browser, there is an option to use the ReminderFox application. Courtesy of Ray Harris' JavaScript book, the following Task List widget provides a quick and simple way to assist you in prioritizing your day, week, month or even prioritizing your life:

Task List Manager

Please be advised that the above Task List widget uses a cookie to remember your tasks each time you close but later re-open this page. If you are concerned or suspect that someone else might be trying to view your input/tasks, then you may load this page securely at https://bruessard.com/derailers.html. Otherwise, if you do not make use of the above Task List widget to input tasks, there is no reason for you to be concerned about others reading your tasks. Your tasks are stored locally on the computing device that you happen to be using. I do not have access to your tasks nor do I have any interest whatsoever in viewing your tasks. Nobody else can view your tasks.



EDUCATION AS A KEY DETERMINANT OF SUCCESS IN LIFE

At the outset, it should noted that you do not need to be a genius to live a comfortable existence. For instance, to attain financial prosperity in life, you do not have to possess an advanced degree in business such as the MBA degree. Having said that, perhaps one of the greatest keys to success in life is education. Many people widely view education as the one conduit where even the poorest humans can lift themselves from poverty literally by the straps of their boots and move forward to achieve better, richer, and fuller lives.

Watch (8 Biggest Challenges to Educate Every Child on the Planet)




Watch (PISA - Measuring Student Success around the World)




Read (Pathways to Skills)




Watch (History of Mathematics in 50 Minutes)




Watch (BBC - Beautiful Equations)


The next link cites 17 famous math equations. For starters, the link shows the role that math plays in education. The equations link also shows how these equations are being applied in the real world or are being applied in daily life. The equations link represents a good illustration of the synergy or the marriage of technology to science. The link shows how members of the business community or how enterprising individuals have taken scientific discoveries and exploited them for commercial purposes and profit, which is not a bad thing at all. The outcome of these business applications usually is an increase in the human living standard. Suffice it to add that two of these 17 math formulas were introduced and discussed on the "Cosmic Secrets" page of this website, that is, Sir Isaac Newton's universal law of gravitation and Albert Einstein's theory of relativity.

17 Equations That Changed the Course of Humanity

One shortcoming or weakness with the market system's application of certain advances in math and science is this: In the quest for profits and riches, enterprising individuals or the captains of industry sometimes create a lot of artificial demand through advertising, promotion, and marketing; scarce resources end up getting allocated to the production of far too many superfluous or unneeded products. In the final analysis, however, the market system excels at creating wealth. One tradeoff for this societal wealth creation appears to be an acceptance of the fact that a lot of wasteful or non-essential production also occurs.

Continuing with the focus on math, the next link provides an overview of—and represents a tribute to—some of the greatest known mathematicians in human history.

The Greatest Mathematicians of All Time

The following link presents a treatise on how to solve contemporary math problems.

TheMathPage

The next video surveys some of the greatest inventions in human history.

Watch (Top 10 Inventions of All Time)




FreePatentsOnline.com

Advanced Patent Search


PROFILES IN PROGRESS

What is the state of the human condition right now at the dawn of the 21st century? What is the state of the world economy right now? The World Economic Forum has sought to answer these questions. One way in which the World Economic Forum attempts to answer these questions is through the annual release of its Global Competitiveness Report. The following video, tag cloud graphic, interactive heatmap, and table summarize some highlights from the 2014-2015 Global Competitiveness Report.

Watch (The Global Competitiveness Report 2014-2015)




User Generated Tag Cloud of the Global Competitiveness Index 2014-2015 Edition
Tag Cloud Image Credit for Global Competitiveness Index (GCI)'s 2014-2015 Edition: Wordle



Read (Interactive Global Competitiveness Heatmap)





Recap of Rankings: The Global Competitiveness Index (GCI) 2014-2015 (1=Highest Rank; 144=Lowest Rank of the 144 Countries Participating)
Index Country Overall Rank Score Year Geographic Region 1st Pillar Rank: Institutions 2nd Pillar Rank: Infrastructure 3rd Pillar Rank: Macroeconomic environment 4th Pillar Rank: Health and primary education 5th Pillar Rank: Higher education and training 6th Pillar Rank: Goods market efficiency 7th Pillar Rank: Labor market efficiency 8th Pillar Rank: Financial market development 9th Pillar Rank: Technological readiness 10th Pillar Rank: Market size 11th Pillar Rank: Business sophistication 12th Pillar Rank: Innovation
1 Albania 97 3.84 GCI 2014-2015 Central Europe and Asia 103 90 122 62 60 93 93 114 91 105 104 120
2 Algeria 79 4.08 GCI 2014-2015 Arab State 101 106 11 81 98 136 139 137 129 47 131 128
3 Angola 140 3.04 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 143 139 71 136 144 143 128 140 140 65 144 142
4 Argentina 104 3.79 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 137 89 102 67 45 141 143 129 82 24 96 97
5 Armenia 85 4.01 GCI 2014-2015 Central Asia 72 78 77 99 75 64 74 97 71 118 93 104
6 Australia 22 5.08 GCI 2014-2015 East Asia and Pacific 19 20 30 17 11 29 56 6 19 18 28 25
7 Austria 21 5.16 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 22 13 33 19 15 22 43 43 18 37 7 18
8 Azerbaijan 38 4.53 GCI 2014-2015 Central Asia 60 70 9 104 90 72 33 89 56 72 80 59
9 Bahrain 44 4.48 GCI 2014-2015 Arab State 29 31 47 40 55 21 26 31 34 99 45 60
10 Bangladesh 109 3.72 GCI 2014-2015 South and West Asia 131 127 72 102 125 84 124 88 126 44 118 129
11 Barbados 55 4.36 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 33 28 132 16 30 74 31 32 35 138 53 47
12 Belgium 18 5.18 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 23 18 70 2 5 14 60 38 14 28 10 13
13 Bhutan 103 3.80 GCI 2014-2015 South and West Asia 38 92 119 89 108 115 24 111 124 140 107 113
14 Bolivia 105 3.77 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 90 109 35 109 97 132 127 121 118 84 103 83
15 Botswana 74 4.15 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 39 101 13 127 101 97 36 57 76 97 116 102
16 Brazil 57 4.34 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 94 76 85 77 41 123 109 53 58 9 47 62
17 Bulgaria 54 4.37 GCI 2014-2015 Central Europe and Asia 112 74 36 51 63 63 67 60 41 63 105 105
18 Burkina Faso 135 3.21 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 117 141 83 141 136 127 70 127 132 111 136 107
19 Burundi 139 3.09 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 132 140 112 114 142 135 103 142 142 141 139 133
20 Cambodia 95 3.89 GCI 2014-2015 East Asia and Pacific 119 107 80 91 123 90 29 84 102 87 111 116
21 Cameroon 116 3.66 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 91 126 90 112 117 113 81 108 120 91 98 71
22 Canada 15 5.24 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 14 15 51 7 18 15 7 8 22 13 23 22
23 Cape Verde 114 3.68 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 66 104 106 57 89 110 126 115 80 144 114 101
24 Chad 143 2.85 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 140 144 73 144 143 142 120 136 143 106 143 139
25 Chile 33 4.60 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 28 49 22 70 32 34 50 19 42 41 55 48
26 China 28 4.89 GCI 2014-2015 East Asia and Pacific 47 46 10 46 65 56 37 54 83 2 43 32
27 Colombia 66 4.23 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 111 84 29 105 69 109 84 70 68 32 62 77
28 Costa Rica 51 4.42 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 46 73 93 48 37 52 57 92 40 82 32 34
29 Cote d'Ivoire 115 3.67 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 86 93 68 140 121 82 73 78 117 94 100 69
30 Croatia 77 4.13 GCI 2014-2015 Central Europe and Asia 87 44 91 60 53 105 106 74 44 79 83 93
31 Cyprus 58 4.31 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 42 45 134 9 33 27 30 83 43 115 40 36
32 Czech Republic 37 4.53 GCI 2014-2015 Central Europe and Asia 76 41 40 37 35 50 62 44 36 42 35 39
33 Denmark 13 5.29 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 16 21 16 25 10 23 12 27 6 54 11 11
34 Dominican Republic 101 3.82 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 116 98 94 107 99 94 107 99 84 68 73 103
35 Egypt 119 3.60 GCI 2014-2015 Arab State 100 100 141 97 111 118 140 125 95 29 95 124
36 El Salvador 84 4.01 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 99 57 100 80 94 55 125 86 93 90 37 51
37 Estonia 29 4.71 GCI 2014-2015 Central Europe and Asia 26 38 20 26 20 26 11 29 29 100 48 30
38 Ethiopia 118 3.60 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 96 125 95 110 131 124 78 120 133 66 127 109
39 Finland 4 5.50 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 2 19 43 1 1 18 23 5 11 55 9 1
40 France 23 5.08 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 32 8 82 18 28 46 61 23 17 8 22 19
41 Gabon 106 3.74 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 79 114 18 130 126 126 69 105 108 109 133 122
42 Gambia, The 125 3.53 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 44 95 142 133 107 111 38 94 103 142 71 89
43 Georgia 69 4.22 GCI 2014-2015 Central Asia 48 59 48 63 92 60 41 76 67 103 113 121
44 Germany 5 5.49 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 17 7 24 14 16 19 35 25 13 5 3 6
45 Ghana 111 3.71 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 69 108 133 121 106 67 98 62 100 69 70 63
46 Greece 81 4.04 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 85 36 135 41 44 85 118 130 39 49 74 79
47 Guatemala 78 4.10 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 109 67 64 100 103 45 85 45 88 78 52 95
48 Guinea 144 2.79 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 134 143 138 139 140 137 89 134 139 127 141 141
49 Guyana 117 3.65 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 89 110 118 113 82 83 101 82 101 135 68 55
50 Haiti 137 3.14 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 135 138 120 126 109 140 77 135 134 129 138 140
51 Honduras 100 3.82 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 105 102 123 85 100 91 130 59 97 93 64 74
52 Hong Kong SAR 7 5.46 GCI 2014-2015 East Asia and Pacific 8 1 14 32 22 2 3 1 5 27 16 26
53 Hungary 60 4.28 GCI 2014-2015 Central Europe and Asia 83 50 61 64 52 65 75 73 50 53 92 50
54 Iceland 30 4.71 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 21 23 92 10 13 49 14 68 8 128 29 27
55 India 71 4.21 GCI 2014-2015 South and West Asia 70 87 101 98 93 95 112 51 121 3 57 49
56 Indonesia 34 4.57 GCI 2014-2015 East Asia and Pacific 53 56 34 74 61 48 110 42 77 15 34 31
57 Iran, Islamic Rep. 83 4.03 GCI 2014-2015 South and West Asia 108 69 62 52 78 120 142 128 107 21 110 86
58 Ireland 25 4.98 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 15 27 130 8 17 10 18 61 12 57 20 20
59 Israel 27 4.95 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 43 34 50 44 36 79 59 20 15 48 26 3
60 Italy 49 4.42 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 106 26 108 22 47 73 136 119 38 12 25 35
61 Jamaica 86 3.98 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 80 80 136 72 76 76 58 48 75 107 67 75
62 Japan 6 5.47 GCI 2014-2015 East Asia and Pacific 11 6 127 6 21 12 22 16 20 4 1 4
63 Jordan 64 4.25 GCI 2014-2015 Arab State 37 71 131 47 48 40 94 66 73 88 42 41
64 Kazakhstan 50 4.42 GCI 2014-2015 Central Asia 57 62 27 96 62 54 15 98 61 52 91 85
65 Kenya 90 3.93 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 78 96 126 120 95 62 25 24 87 74 44 38
66 Korea, Rep. 26 4.96 GCI 2014-2015 East Asia and Pacific 82 14 7 27 23 33 86 80 25 11 27 17
67 Kuwait 40 4.51 GCI 2014-2015 Arab State 55 61 3 82 81 106 116 77 74 67 76 111
68 Kyrgyz Republic 108 3.73 GCI 2014-2015 Central Asia 124 115 104 101 91 77 92 95 111 117 119 132
69 Lao PDR 93 3.91 GCI 2014-2015 East Asia and Pacific 63 94 124 90 110 59 34 101 115 121 79 84
70 Latvia 42 4.50 GCI 2014-2015 Central Europe and Asia 51 47 32 31 31 36 17 33 32 95 61 70
71 Lebanon 113 3.68 GCI 2014-2015 Arab State 139 122 143 30 67 71 123 102 86 76 75 119
72 Lesotho 107 3.73 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 68 116 28 128 116 80 76 123 137 139 123 110
73 Libya 126 3.48 GCI 2014-2015 Arab State 142 113 41 119 102 139 133 144 130 85 135 144
74 Lithuania 41 4.51 GCI 2014-2015 Central Europe and Asia 58 43 42 35 26 47 53 65 28 77 49 44
75 Luxembourg 19 5.17 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 6 16 8 36 43 5 16 14 1 96 21 16
76 Macedonia, FYR 63 4.26 GCI 2014-2015 Central Europe and Asia 45 82 55 78 71 38 71 41 62 108 89 68
77 Madagascar 130 3.41 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 128 135 81 125 130 102 39 132 127 114 117 94
78 Malawi 132 3.25 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 77 131 144 123 132 108 28 79 135 123 108 115
79 Malaysia 20 5.16 GCI 2014-2015 East Asia and Pacific 20 25 44 33 46 7 19 4 60 26 15 21
80 Mali 128 3.43 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 126 103 86 138 128 104 102 122 112 122 102 92
81 Malta 47 4.45 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 40 37 65 20 42 31 54 36 21 126 36 45
82 Mauritania 141 3.00 GCI 2014-2015 Arab State 138 123 115 137 141 138 141 141 123 131 142 136
83 Mauritius 39 4.52 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 35 42 74 42 54 25 52 26 63 113 33 76
84 Mexico 61 4.27 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 102 65 53 71 87 86 121 63 79 10 58 61
85 Moldova 82 4.03 GCI 2014-2015 Central Europe and Asia 121 83 56 93 84 103 82 100 51 124 124 131
86 Mongolia 98 3.83 GCI 2014-2015 Central Asia 98 112 125 65 68 81 42 124 81 120 115 106
87 Montenegro 67 4.23 GCI 2014-2015 Central Europe and Asia 59 72 88 29 51 69 65 56 54 134 97 58
88 Morocco 72 4.21 GCI 2014-2015 Arab State 49 55 66 76 104 58 111 69 78 56 78 90
89 Mozambique 133 3.24 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 127 128 110 135 138 116 104 126 122 101 125 118
90 Myanmar 134 3.24 GCI 2014-2015 East Asia and Pacific 136 137 116 117 135 130 72 139 144 70 140 138
91 Namibia 88 3.96 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 50 66 78 115 115 96 55 46 89 119 94 91
92 Nepal 102 3.81 GCI 2014-2015 South and West Asia 120 132 37 75 113 121 114 75 128 98 126 126
93 Netherlands 8 5.45 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 10 4 39 5 3 9 21 37 9 23 5 8
94 New Zealand 17 5.20 GCI 2014-2015 East Asia and Pacific 1 29 25 4 9 6 6 3 23 62 24 23
95 Nicaragua 99 3.82 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 114 99 67 95 114 125 108 106 113 102 129 123
96 Nigeria 127 3.44 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 129 134 76 143 124 87 40 67 104 33 87 114
97 Norway 11 5.35 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 5 32 1 15 8 24 13 10 4 50 13 15
98 Oman 46 4.46 GCI 2014-2015 Arab State 24 33 6 54 79 28 48 28 57 73 56 64
99 Pakistan 129 3.42 GCI 2014-2015 South and West Asia 123 119 137 129 127 100 132 72 114 30 81 88
100 Panama 48 4.43 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 71 40 52 79 66 41 87 22 53 80 54 40
101 Paraguay 120 3.59 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 133 117 54 111 112 92 115 93 110 92 121 134
102 Peru 65 4.24 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 118 88 21 94 83 53 51 40 92 43 72 117
103 Philippines 52 4.40 GCI 2014-2015 East Asia and Pacific 67 91 26 92 64 70 91 49 69 35 46 52
104 Poland 43 4.48 GCI 2014-2015 Central Europe and Asia 56 63 63 39 34 51 79 35 48 19 63 72
105 Portugal 36 4.54 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 41 17 128 24 24 44 83 104 26 51 51 28
106 Puerto Rico 32 4.64 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 34 58 99 103 27 20 46 21 37 60 18 29
107 Qatar 16 5.24 GCI 2014-2015 Arab State 4 24 2 28 38 4 10 13 31 59 12 14
108 Romania 59 4.30 GCI 2014-2015 Central Europe and Asia 88 85 46 88 58 89 90 64 47 45 90 66
109 Russian Federation 53 4.37 GCI 2014-2015 Central Europe and Asia 97 39 31 56 39 99 45 110 59 7 86 65
110 Rwanda 62 4.27 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 18 105 79 86 122 42 9 55 98 125 84 53
111 Saudi Arabia 24 5.06 GCI 2014-2015 Arab State 25 30 4 50 57 35 64 30 45 20 30 33
112 Senegal 112 3.70 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 74 111 97 131 119 68 68 85 96 104 77 57
113 Serbia 94 3.90 GCI 2014-2015 Central Europe and Asia 122 77 129 68 74 128 119 109 49 71 132 108
114 Seychelles 92 3.91 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 54 53 57 55 85 88 44 103 70 143 66 73
115 Sierra Leone 138 3.10 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 107 136 117 142 137 117 95 116 138 133 128 130
116 Singapore 2 5.65 GCI 2014-2015 East Asia and Pacific 3 2 15 3 2 1 2 2 7 31 19 9
117 Slovak Republic 75 4.15 GCI 2014-2015 Central Europe and Asia 110 64 45 84 56 66 97 39 52 58 65 78
118 Slovenia 70 4.22 GCI 2014-2015 Central Europe and Asia 75 35 98 12 25 61 99 133 33 81 59 42
119 South Africa 56 4.35 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 36 60 89 132 86 32 113 7 66 25 31 43
120 Spain 35 4.55 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 73 9 121 34 29 75 100 91 27 14 38 37
121 Sri Lanka 73 4.19 GCI 2014-2015 South and West Asia 62 75 114 45 72 39 135 47 94 61 39 46
122 Suriname 110 3.71 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 104 86 59 73 105 129 117 118 72 137 122 127
123 Swaziland 123 3.55 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 61 97 60 134 120 98 105 71 125 136 101 112
124 Sweden 10 5.41 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 13 22 17 23 14 17 20 12 3 36 8 7
125 Switzerland 1 5.70 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 9 5 12 11 4 8 1 11 10 39 2 2
126 Taiwan, China 14 5.25 GCI 2014-2015 East Asia and Pacific 27 11 23 13 12 11 32 18 30 17 17 10
127 Tajikistan 91 3.93 GCI 2014-2015 Central Asia 65 120 69 83 88 114 63 113 116 116 82 80
128 Tanzania 121 3.57 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 93 130 109 108 134 122 47 96 131 75 112 98
129 Thailand 31 4.66 GCI 2014-2015 East Asia and Pacific 84 48 19 66 59 30 66 34 65 22 41 67
130 Timor-Leste 136 3.17 GCI 2014-2015 East Asia and Pacific 125 133 49 124 133 134 122 138 141 130 137 135
131 Trinidad and Tobago 89 3.95 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 95 52 38 59 77 101 96 52 64 112 69 100
132 Tunisia 87 3.96 GCI 2014-2015 Arab State 81 79 111 53 73 107 129 117 90 64 88 99
133 Turkey 45 4.46 GCI 2014-2015 Central Europe and Asia 64 51 58 69 50 43 131 58 55 16 50 56
134 Uganda 122 3.56 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 115 129 96 122 129 119 27 81 119 86 109 96
135 Ukraine 76 4.14 GCI 2014-2015 Central Europe and Asia 130 68 105 43 40 112 80 107 85 38 99 81
136 United Arab Emirates 12 5.33 GCI 2014-2015 Arab State 7 3 5 38 6 3 8 17 24 46 14 24
137 United Kingdom 9 5.41 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 12 10 107 21 19 13 5 15 2 6 6 12
138 United States 3 5.54 GCI 2014-2015 North America and Western Europe 30 12 113 49 7 16 4 9 16 1 4 5
139 Uruguay 80 4.04 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 31 54 84 58 49 57 134 87 46 89 85 82
140 Venezuela 131 3.32 GCI 2014-2015 Latin America and the Caribbean 144 121 139 87 70 144 144 131 106 40 134 137
141 Vietnam 68 4.23 GCI 2014-2015 East Asia and Pacific 92 81 75 61 96 78 49 90 99 34 106 87
142 Yemen 142 2.96 GCI 2014-2015 Arab State 141 142 140 116 139 131 138 143 136 83 120 143
143 Zambia 96 3.86 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 52 118 103 118 80 37 88 50 105 110 60 54
144 Zimbabwe 124 3.54 GCI 2014-2015 Sub-Saharan Africa 113 124 87 106 118 133 137 112 109 132 130 125
Index Country Overall Rank Score Year Geographic Region 1st Pillar Rank: Institutions 2nd Pillar Rank: Infrastructure 3rd Pillar Rank: Macroeconomic environment 4th Pillar Rank: Health and primary education 5th Pillar Rank: Higher education and training 6th Pillar Rank: Goods market efficiency 7th Pillar Rank: Labor market efficiency 8th Pillar Rank: Financial market development 9th Pillar Rank: Technological readiness 10th Pillar Rank: Market size 11th Pillar Rank: Business sophistication 12th Pillar Rank: Innovation
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Source for Data in the Global Competitiveness Index 2005-2014 Recap Table:
Global Competitiveness Report 2014-2015 - Economies
Global Competitiveness Report 2014-2015 - Downloads





ODE TO THE ENDURING HUMAN SPIRIT

There are more than enough problems in the world today. There are more than enough challenges facing humankind today. As alluded on the "Education for All" and on the "Earth Watch" pages of this website, some of these challenges are so numerous, wide-ranging, and widespread until sometimes they are enough to make you want to throw your hands into the air to surrender in sorrow and despair. These societal challenges and problems sometimes seem so formidable until it makes you feel like running off someplace and burying your head in the sand. Some of these problems seem so intractable until sometimes it is enough to make you want to ask, "Why don't we simply wait for God to come and deal with all of this stuff?" Yet, no matter how insurmountable these problems and challenges seem, the human spirit endures. As long as humans remain positive and hopeful, I believe that these challenges will be met. I believe that these problems will be solved. To be sure, in the aftermath of World War II, a war-torn and ravaged Western Europe was rebuilt. Humans do have a track record of accomplishing big things when they put their minds to it coupled with them having an action plan, the requisite resources, and the will power to make it (reconstruction) happen.

Watch (Mariah Carey, Make It Happen)




Watch (Ledisi, In the Morning / Alright)




SMOOTH LANDING, OR A HAPPY ENDING

The next two photos are of a train smoothly moving down the railroad track as it safely pulls into the train station. These two photos are meant to depict you as having successfully navigated your way down the road of life. The two photos signify that you have succeeded in achieving your goals. Congratulations! It was a nice journey.

Scenic Train Ride - Cuyahoga Valley National Park (U.S. National Park Service) - Train pulls into station


Scenic Train Ride - Cuyahoga Valley National Park (U.S. National Park Service) - Passengers Ride in the Dome Car
Images Credit: Scenic Train Ride - Cuyahoga Valley National Park (U.S. National Park Service)

For those teenagers who seem to have lost their sense of direction, who have gotten off course, or who have otherwise gotten off to a bumpy start down the road of life, it is never too late for you to make a "U Turn" (Joe Sample). It is never too late for you to peacefully "Turn It Into Something Good" (Earth, Wind & Fire). Even if your journey down the road of life began somewhat turbulently, it remains possible for you to conclude your journey successfully with a smooth landing as illustrated by the next photo.

Photo of 727 on final approach to landing
Image Credit: Lessons Learned from Transport Airplane Accidents


LOVE BALLADS

I wish to close this page on an upbeat, cheerful, and positive note. To do so, I am sending a few love ballads your way. Enjoy.

Listen (Barry White, Mellow Mood, Part I)




Listen (Minnie Riperton, Could It Be I'm In Love)




Listen (Minnie Riperton, Gettin' Ready For Your Love)




Watch (Michael Jackson, Can't Help It)



Listen (Sade, Kiss Of Life)




Listen (Stevie Wonder, Ribbon In The Sky)




Listen (Barbra Streisand, The Way He Makes Me Feel)



Listen (Barry White, Mellow Mood, Part II)







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Intellectual Property Disclosures: All videos and songs (as well as many of the images) referenced or spotlighted throughout this website are the legal and intellectual properties of others. All content and opinions on this website (bruessard.com) are those of the author (Edward Bruessard) exclusively and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the contributors, creators, owners, and distributors of these referenced videos, songs, and images. The author holds no legal interest or financial stake in any of these referenced videos, songs, and images. The contributors, creators, owners, and distributors of these referenced videos, songs, and images played no role at all regarding the appearance of said videos, songs, and images throughout this website; they had no clue that this website would be spotlighting their works.


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