Thursday, October 27, 2011

This might not have been the most prudent e-mail I ever sent (which is saying a LOT!)

My Dear Mr. Andrew J. Borst,

I'm a 1973 graduate of WIU )Math Major, Statistics Minor - nominated to Phi Beta Kappa, but, graduated early before the dinner) and want to return for a Master's Degree.

Under ideal circumstances, I'm seeking a Master's in interdisciplinary studies structured towards facilitating my next career move (performing musician / fund raiser / political activist).

My contact information is:

Home phone: xxx xxx xxxx
Cell phone: yyy yyy yyyy
Address: xxxx x xxxxx xxx
Barrington, IL 60010

In particular, I would like to use my professional and life experiences to address at the West-Central Illinois Regional Area the following issues:

Allocation of Funding for Public Health and Safety

The single most unreported story in the history of history appeared in ABC News' web
site in February, 2011, which told of IBM approaching Barack Obama with a proposal
use their computer expertise to reduce Medicare / Medicaid expenditures by $900 Billion.
This offer was refused, which is most extraordinary.

Nonetheless, at the regional (and state) level, improvements of the quality of life and of
death can be obtained at huge cost savings simply by spending more money on routine
preventative check ups and wise use of Hospice for terminal patients. Such matters
can be quantified, and health care personnel can be trained (or retrained) to provide
health care with a much different emphasis (at the present, 90% of Medicare payments
are made to recipients who will live less than one year).

There is a brilliant model for offering such services in the Chicago area (and one that
could be developed on a parallel basis at WIU). My personal physician who has treated
me pro bono for the last 10 years works for a medical clinic that has on staff 10 doctors,
two physician assistants, and six support staff for check in and check out. In addition,
they have a couple of dozen health care workers. They see patients, at their busiest
peak hours at the rate of one every 90 seconds, which is TRULY astounding.

The reality is this: HEALTH care is a matter of national security (when the next influenza epidemic hits, and 10's of 1000's of people die, and millions are laid low, we will all be reminded of why this is so). FURTHERMORE, no one ought to make a profit on either the
good or bad health of any human being.

In addition, there are "hot spots" in the state, specifically Streator, Illinois, where I grew up, where the rate of deaths from cancer is 250% higher than the nation wide average. This undoubtedly is the result of toxins in the soil and in the air under and surrounding Streator. With its history as first a coal mining community, then a farming community, and finally the glass manufacturing capital of the world, any number of toxins might have escaped into the environment. By charting the places where the victims of cancer have lived, it ought to be possible to determine WHERE the toxins are most heavily concentrated, and then what to do to remove them and purify the soil and fix the mess.

Law Enforcement

White collar crime is much more costly in both financial terms and theft of assets, the
break up of families, the break down of health, the devastation of communities. LAW
enforcement should be geared to using forensic accounting methods and computer
surveillance to detect major fraud (ENRON for seven years running was rated the top
company in America; if ENRON is the best, then what about those companies that
aren't so good?)

On the flip side, burglary, robbery, auto theft tend to be crimes committed by people
of lower social standing who are motivated by, literally, hunger, and a lack of education
which leads to a lack of opportunity for employment, and poverty ad infinitum. Our
prisons ought to provide educational opportunities to equip men (and women) in the
early stages of their criminal careers with skill sets to be able to make a living wage
outside of prison (as consultants to businesses and home owners in high crime
areas is most assuredly a live possibility). The entire thrust of the prison system in
the country ought to be reversed so that those who come from favored backgrounds
and commit crimes against many citizens (with the sweep of a pen, or the smudge of
an eraser) ought to serve REAL jail time and to the full extent available under the law,
while people of impoverished circumstances ought to be able to give a chance to
rehabilitate themselves and become contributing citizens (who pay taxes, own their
homes and businesses and are willing to give some of what they have to the less


The whole educational canon needs to be re-examined. While schools do a fine job
of graduating technicians, much more is required of a good citizen than mere technical
expertise: critical thinking and a historical over view being two of the most needed and
most neglected areas, along with multicultural studies.

Mental Health

Western medicine cannot cure the common cold and cannot cure depression. Much
work and rethinking is needed in the mental health field. Giving someone a drug to
mask the symptoms of a "pathology" is hardly dealing with root causes and the pain
that must be endured to get past the original sticking point. The emphasis should be
on talk "therapy" for most of the so-called "mental illnesses" rather than medication
(depression, Alzheimers, dementia, and schizophrenia being exceptions to this
(broad generalization).

Becoming Independent of Foreign Oil

It ought to be possible to run a rural region (such as McDonough County) utilizing
electric energy (perhaps issue every man, woman, and child a golf cart and build
the infrastructure to re-charge them every 5 miles or so) rail technology (there are
train tracks that in theory would permit any one to get from anywhere to any where
else via rail road - how fast and efficient might innovative design and thinking make
rail roads?) the outright banning of motor vehicles during certain hours of the day
(police, emergency response vehicles, and trucks being exceptions) to make room
for a lot of golf carts.

My professional and personal adult background includes the following experiences:

10 years as an actuary, working for Bankers Life & Casualty Company where I became a Fellow of the Society of Actuaries and a Member of the American Academy of Actuaries. My duties there involved pricing, experience studies, new product compliance, old product restoration, financial projections for both FIT purposes, and for the ultimate sale of BL&C's health insurance and mass-marketed Life Insurance books of business.

10 years as a technical writer / editor - script writer for various Junior College College Algebra and Trigonometry text books and grade school and junior high school mathematics text books,as well as writing questions and checking answer keys.

2 years in the publishing industry, working for Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers (BCP) as the home office liaison to the Hughes Aircraft System Engineer who developed the coding to convert BCP's twp-year self teaching Latin Program (Artes Latinae) from an audio-cassette / text book format to a CDRom / text book format. Additional duties there involved ghost writing the Publisher's preface to the Complete Writings and Speeches of Adolph Hitler, soliciting colleges and universities for the emplacement of ads in BCP's semi-annual catalogues, and pricing the CDRom version of the Artes Latinae program and cost estimating the expenditures for the ultimate completion of the AL-conversion product.

20 years as a contract bridge instructor. I'm a professional bridge player, earning my income primarily from teaching. I've also presented more than 30 lectures about the game in various regional tournaments around the midwest.

20 years as a golf caddie. I've caddied for Byron Nelson and Andy North, plus a number of the top Illinois club professionals from the Chicago area. I'm also a scratch golfer and have worked as a golf instructor.

2 years in the food and bevridge industry - working as a wait staff person, bartender, night clean up.

Several months working as a movie extra for three movies: Home Alone Part 2; The Babe; Hoffa.

30 years as a professional recording musician, singer, song writer. I'd rate myself the world's most prolific recording artist, given the six CDs and one DVD I cut in a five week period from this past December 2010 - January 2011. Within the next 2-3 months I will be touring the Chicago
area, the Stae of Illinois, and finally the country allocating 60% of the net proceeds to charities, primarily (a) kevlar vests for our troops, (b) organic farming, (c) luekimia research.

I've also been homeless, on social security total disability, in jail (multiple times), and in various mental institutions (typically committed involuntarily).

I have a very strong spiritual relationship with God, or the Universe, and although I call myself a Lutheran, I also converted to Islam in 2007, which event fortified and strengthened my Christian beliefs considerably.

Like Chief Seattle, I see all things as connected, and I believe my life's experiences have given me insights into the human condition that few, if any, can completely share.

Thank you for your attention to this e-mail. I would like to interview for a Master's degree program and discuss these matters further with the various department chairs, or advisors. My time is quite flexible, although I must travel in the mornings in order to keep my transportation expenses to a bare minimum, and furthermore, need to meet during the working week.

I look forward to hearing from you, and hopefully soon.

Respectfully yours,

Mark Raymond Ganzer

Once again, my contact information is:

Home phone: xxx xxx xxxx
Cell phone: yyy yyy yyyy
Address: xxxx x xxxxx xxx
Barrington, IL 60010

At first blush, it appears as if I must be a lunatic. But, what I was asking for was something I know the university did not offer. I would not have wanted to be accepted into a program tailor-made for me and then have somebody discover some the inconvenient truths about me, and get seller's remorse. So, I just put everything up front, to see the reaction I get, as much as anything else. Why would I even want to associate with something that would hold my mental illness misdiagnosis, prison record, etc, etc, etc against me?

Hey, I live in AMERICA - land of the serfs, home of the slaves, and wouldn't I rather not get emotionally involved with somebody who would freak over this shit?