The president disgusts me. Once again, he is failing to honor the men who managed to pull off that righteous thumping known as D-Day.
My Dad was not part of D-Day. He was a P-51 Mustang pilot, stationed in England, so he was basically eating lamb chops with mint jelly while that action was going down. Still, he is a hero. He is MY hero. Or rather, he was. He passed away last year. He did do his part, though, when the chips were down and performance mattered.
I listen to the Billy Ray Cyrus song Some Gave All fairly often: read more »
Let us start with the basics:
I have no problem with people voluntarily banding together to speak with one voice. And if that is all unions were, I would not object to them, at least in the private sector. The government sector is another matter entirely.
Wisconsin votes today on the fate of their governor, and while the recall election of Governor Walker is relevant on many fronts, the biggie is that he limited the power of government-sector unions. He said he was going to do it, and he did. I'm not sure how anyone can fault a politician for delivering on a campaign promise. But in the land of cheese, it appears to be Bizarro World with bratwursts and beer.
I don't understand government-sector unions. Can anyone explain to me why government-sector employees are allowed to form unions in the first place? I mean, it seems like a rather perverse set-up.
They work for the government. The government sets their compensation. The union uses dues, paid by government-sector employees, to get people elected who will pay the government-sector workers more money. When they make more money, they pay more union dues. And the union has even more money to put people into place who will pay the government-sector workers yet MORE money.
Sounds like a big fat scam if you ask me. Even FDR, Mr. Collectivist himself, opposed government-sector unions.
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I'm only 48, and sometimes, I feel ancient. I recently read in an article that some women are trying to "rock the slut vote." To paraphrase Billy Ray Cyrus, I just don't think I understand. When did having round heels become fashionable?
Women have a gift, and it is one that men all over the planet want. Okay, we have multiple gifts to give. We are warm and soft and we smell good. And we have breasts and pretty hair and sparkly makeup. Those and more are things men adore. And there's one thing they desire more than all of that. They want to "know" us in the biblical sense.
A woman's inner regions, so to speak, are something very powerful, and very valuable. Why are so many women proud to give it away like it's stale popcorn at a "We finance anybody!" used car event?
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The May jobs report was supposed to be all happy and sunny, with Obama as the fearless knight on the galloping steed of economic recovery, and "Julia" riding a unicorn that farts rainbows.
The private sector gained 89,000 jobs, the government sector lost 13,000 jobs, and unemployment rose to 8.2%. I'm staring at the horizon, and there's not a steed or unicorn in sight. Economists may have predicted something different, but this result is precisely what I expected.
There isn't a lot of optimism out there in Small Business Land. It's poignantly absent in Corporate Megalopolis as well. Everyone, from executives to janitors, is feeling bleak. Even the salespeople, fueled by expense accounts and single-malt Scotch, are less cheerful than usual. When THAT happens, the apocalypse is surely nigh. A couple of months of moderately positive jobs reports were supposed to cure the economic doldrums, but it didn't happen.
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His dwindling band of supporters seem to think so. Some of them even laud him as "the smartest President EVAH!" The rest of us aren't so sure that he's even smarter than the guy who came to snake out the drain the other day. (By the by, my nomination for smartest ever would be James Garfield, because his proof of the Pythagorean theorem using a right trapezoid was quite brilliant. Yes, I am an egghead.)
So let's talk about "smart." There's book smart, there's people smart, and when you are a politician, there's politically smart. Is Barack Obama any of those kinds of smart?
I got on this subject based on the comments of three fellows that I know and have great respect for. One said that his friend in Boulder had met Obama during the 2008 campaign season, and even had an opportunity to play basketball with him. The Boulderite opined after the experience that Obama was "not terribly bright and a crappy basketball player to boot." Another one simply stated, "I live with a genius, so I know what it looks like, and Obama isn't it." The third, a now-disillusioned 2008 Obama voter, said "I still like the guy, but he ain't very smart, is he?" Those three thoughts seem to suggest that Obama has none of the three kinds of "smart."
You would hope that he was book smart because he graduated from Harvard Law School with high honors. They can't possibly be giving such accolades to the painfully average, can they?
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Pizza Patron, a small Dallas-based chain, is offering free pizza, with a catch. On June 5th, you may avail yourself of one large pepperoni pie at no cost, as long as you order it in Spanish.
If one cared enough to take them up on the offer, there are plenty of translators on the internet that can turn "Large pepperoni pizza. By the by, you smell of elderberries." into Spanish. The question is, why would anyone bother? Their pizza is barely a step above the shovel-ready job my dog left in the yard this morning, and several steps below shirt cardboard smeared with tomato juice and Elmer's glue. But hey, it's FREE!
You really do get what you pay for.
That said, this promotion doesn't bother me. Their business, their rules. What DOES bother me is that if someone dared to offer a promotion available only to English-speakers, all hell would break loose. There would be cries of racism, even though Hispanic is an ethnicity, not a race. The Latino advocacy groups would spin themselves up so hard that they'd make a Tasmanian devil look like a calm, mellow creature.
Aren't double standards a beautiful thing?
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Tonight is the second part of a two-night Dancing With The Stars finale. Donald Driver will probably win, because he is a good dancer, and his freestyle last night was just that awesome.
Next season is the long awaited all-star season. Tom Bergeron has said that the participants will be a mix of former champions, former runners-up, fan favorites, and controversial contestants.
By "controversial," they could mean Kate Gosselin. She tried to get her professional partner, Tony Dovolani, fired from the show. He probably would have been relieved to be done with her, and gone off to do toothpaste commercials or something. But asking for someone's head on a platter is surely not a good way to nurture a dance partnership.
It is far more likely, though, that "controversial" is code for Tom DeLay and Bristol Palin.
The last song Tom DeLay danced to before he was forced to withdraw from the competition due to stress fractures in both feet was Why Can't We Be Friends? It was a fun, and funny, samba that featured him with a sparkly elephant on his costume, and his professional partner Cheryl Burke had a donkey on hers.
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I received a hilarious email that said reelecting Barack Obama would be like backing up the Titanic and driving it into the iceberg a second time. I laughed, and laughed, and laughed. Then I somberly realized something.
The death of America at the hands of Barack Obama is not a laughing matter.
Is "death" a bit of hyperbole? Well, that depends. (No, I'm not going to crack a joke about what the meaning of "is" is.) The Obama vision for the country is Zombie America, still walking around, but not alive. It's a place where the very much alive people are at risk of having the life sucked out of them by the tax code, the regulations, and the zombies who won't deign to work.
I was hoping someone dynamic, charismatic, and electable would show up. Alas, Ronald Reagan is dead. So instead, we get Mitt Romney.
He was by no means my first choice. That would have been Gary Johnson, before he fled to the Libertarian nomination. He believes in a lot of what I do: Reforming the tax code, auditing the Federal Reserve, school choice, standing up for Israel if they are attacked, reforming entitlements so the whole thing doesn't go bust, and creating a business-friendly environment so the economy can prosper. But there was no room for him, because there were other parts of his message that offended Republicans.
So instead, I'll be voting for Mitt. And so will a lot of other people who aren't in love with him. It isn't perfect, but it could be worse.
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I unabashedly confess that I made a lot of money on tech stocks in the 90s. I'm a techie, and I knew what to buy and when to sell. It's like Las Vegas, except a little pertinent knowledge doesn't help you when you've bet hard 8s on the craps table, but it is extraordinarily valuable when wagering on technology stocks.
It is wagering. Don't fool yourself. And there's nothing wrong with it, any more than there's something wrong with making a reservation at the Wynn and fiddling with your mad money. At the Wynn, they ply you with free refreshing adult beverages. In the NASDAQ, the wins are bigger, but there's no free booze.
The NASDAQ lost a quarter of its value in one day when the internet stock bubble imploded. Most of the problem was that technology companies are long on ideas and programmers from India, and very short on physical assets. So when they die, there's not a lot of wreckage for the investors to divide up.
The ever so helpful government came up with the Sarbanes–Oxley Act to keep asset-light companies from achieving pre-IPO valuations way out of line with reality. The law is so complex in its reporting requirements that pretty much every compliance person admits that he doesn't understand every facet, and stays up nights planning his shuffle off this mortal coil rather than go to prison for something that honestly isn't his fault.
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Everywhere you look, somebody or other is accusing republicans of "voting against their own self-interest." It's on TV, in print media, and all over the internet. Why, it sounds like you could practically call it waging war on self-interest!
But what does it mean? What are people really trying to say when they play the 'voting against one's self-interest' card?
Now, correct me if I'm wrong, but "self-interest" seems to be a pretty euphemism for "other people's money." Voting for the people who promise you more of someone else's stuff, instead of the people who want you to keep more of your own stuff, is all the rage across the land. And really, what's the harm? Richie Rich has way more money than he needs, so why not take it from him? Why would anyone vote against that kind of "self-interest"?
We could start with "because it's excruciatingly unethical." Yes, that's right, boys and girls of the collective. I'm going to throw down the gauntlet and challenge your ethics. The law says you can vote yourself a lifetime supply of free cheese and beer at someone else's expense, and then vote for someone else to pay for your triple bypass and liver transplant too. But is that ethical behavior? Just because the system says you CAN, doesn't mean you SHOULD. So yeah, paying your own way is more ethical than robbing Richie to pay for 100 strangers whose only claim on his assets is that they want them.
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