Monday, January 31, 2011

The crisis in Egypt and its implications for the geopolitical consortium

(Disclaimer: I don't know WTF I'm talking about here)

Sometimes certain major topical events pose a type of dilemma for the average blogger. I am not an Egyptologist, the Mideast is beyond my pay grade and yet I feel rather compelled to open up the crisis in Egypt for discussion. It's one of those topics you have to google or bing so as to appear semi-literate ("Mubarak's 30-yr rule", "Anwar Sadat assassinated in 1981", "Suleiman for VP", "40% of oil to Europe flowing through the Suez Canal"......) but you'll never rise to the rank of university professor rapping with Jim Lehrer (the reader will note I didn't have much to say on Tunisia of late). It seems to me Mubarak has to go, even his own generals are against him (how am I doing? OG I wish I could blog about Charlie Sheen right now!) but Mubarak kind of reminds me of Pinochet, our kind of dictator about whom we can look the other way at least for a time. Did the looters get to the Pyramids yet? there's a curse on that sort of stuff you know. I have to give my blog some heft with an occasional foray into foreign policy, people are still starving in Niger you know, but as Wikipedia would put it this article can use input from an expert or scholar in the field. BB?:)

Friday, January 28, 2011

The snow/climate change connection & some other Notes

Oh God I was homebound yesterday not because I couldn't go out but I didn't want to lose my parking space, the space I spent a good hour shoveling out (garbage cans are so yesterday). The 7th snowstorm of the season up here in the Northeast, snowiest January on record for Central Park where there was 19" of the white stuff on the ground yesterday. This is the time of year when you browse through large swaths of the conservative blogosphere and you'll see the predictable large-scale photo of the latest blizzard with the title "What Global Warming?" and a few potshots at AlGore so yesterday there was some Japanese scientist on the Today Show saying maybe this all has to do with global warming. Seems there might be more moisture in the Gulf of Mexico these days colliding with that rush of Arctic air coming down from Canada and you really have to love the sheer philosophical tenacity of the global warming crowd, whenever you're theorizing and encounter contrary evidence spin it your way. Now I've been theorizing my whole life about people, things whatever but you're bound to encounter things that don't always support your theory every now and then. Some people become more devoted actually when this happens and have an uncanny ability to work the odd stuff back in but that's not good theorizing imo. It's like with the few people and they're not in the majority by any stretch but when you lose alot of weight your co-workers think you're sick but when you tell 'em two or three times the deal they still stick with the erroneous theory ("Z-man has been losing alot of weight lately. It can't really be all that fish and veggies and exercising, must've been sucking some mean dick. I mean does he ever talk about a girlfriend?" chatter chatter) You know persisting in bad theories is, well just plain bad and can cause all sorts of trouble, a real snowjob you could say. Now I'm more open to theories of climate change than your average conservative but a snowstorm a week beginning the day after Christmas is still a snowstorm a week beginning the day after Christmas and if we had glaciers forming on top of skyscrapers in downtown Manhattan we'd still have the same Japanese scientists blaming it on some jetstream of warm air down south. So temperatures are rising folks but expect more snow. Yeah I thought of doing a blog on Obama's SOTU and his reemergence as a conservative (did he actually say something about unnecessary regulations and parts of the health-care law being bad for Small Business?) but this latest commentary on the winter we've been having up here in the Northeast is just too rich. BTW re this work thing soap feels you should work during a blizzard if you're scheduled to go in and Beth feels in general if you're scheduled X amount of hours during the day you should work those X hours. I just feel you should be able to use your last ten or fifteen minutes to wash up and rap and you have to use your own personal judgement about the weather. My position can best be summed up: in this here 21st Century there should be a more rational way to work. I challenge anybody on this stuff but if you want to talk about the SOTU instead I got no problem. BTW if you're driving in the City and your car gets stuck Bloomberg says you may be towed at your own expense. This guy STILL doesn't get it!!:))

Monday, January 24, 2011

Jack LaLanne isn't even trending today

The fitness master himself passed away at his home yesterday at the ripe old age of 96 but at 2:45 PM on this Monday January the 24th at the time I started composing this Kourtney Kardashian is the top trender, McRib is #2 (Oh God what a culture! is it any wonder when you use a couple of big library words at work everyone looks at you like a genius?). Now I'm not saying you have to trend the guy but if they show a "Sanford and Son" rerun on TV I tend to watch it. Can someone please explain the Power of the Kardashians? So Jack LaLanne passed through the dazzling tunnel of bright white light and at the end of the tunnel he entered a pizzeria and the Good Lord said to him "you no longer have to deny yourself, here have a beer" and somebody else goes "yeah he did all the right things, lived the right way and couldn't even break the century mark." In one of our sideways philosophical discussions here Pam recently opined that we're all gonna die of something at the end so choose your poison. It's like with the weight loss, I did it for me and my reasons are my own, they're personal and unique to me but I don't preach this is the way to go.

Mortality is a weird thing, at some point in time and every second is bringing you there you'll simply stop breathing............and then WHAT??? Once we are born we start to die, it's really not that dental app't we're so anxious about when you get right down to it, it's Something Else. When I went on a retreat as a Catholic high school student they had open confessions in which you talked about anything and I started getting that Off-Center feeling right off the bat like when you go to the doctor as a kid because you have an earache and he's more interested in your gonads. So we're sitting around in a group one day and some young guy starts talking out of the blue about how he fell in love with this girl, they made love and then she died of some disease then another guy, this was an all-boys school btw said how he used to lie awake in his bed at night and would start crying thinking about DEATH and I'm like GOD WHAT A DEPRESSING RETREAT!! Remind me not to go on one of these again.

Reincarnation kind of makes sense because if your life sucks shouldn't you get another shot at it? It's hard to believe THIS is all there is. Not to put too fine a Fringe on it but if it makes you feel any better maybe in a parallel universe some hot Asian babe is lying on your back giving you a poolside massage. Deep thoughts that don't involve a Kardashian sister. So what happens after we die? Will Uma Thurman still be afraid of her stalker...or will they have sex? or maybe he'll reject her. I think the rules of this life are only made for this life and somewhere Jack LaLanne is pigging out right now. Would you want to come back as a member of the opposite sex? I think this is what makes gay men tick, instead of waiting for some post-mortem theological possibility they'd rather see what the old skin flute is all about now...might explain bisexuality, this is getting convoluted. One thing I learned though, situps don't do it for the lower abs, gotta find something else. BTW am I the only one not into 6-pack abs? it doesn't look right and how do you maintain them in your dotage? So do your part and get the old Power Juicer on the board today:)

Thursday, January 20, 2011

American Idol - Season 10

I liked it, it worked. The new team of Randy Jackson, J-Lo and Aerosmith's Steven Tyler proves that a show doesn't have to be cruel to be interesting. Not having Simon is like getting out from under the yoke of a bad boss and the proceedings were much more pleasant this time around. Got the impression they let a few more go through to Hollywood than were warranted and imo a few were let through because of their compelling personal stories alone which kind of made up for their less than special renditions but whatever (you gonna say no to the guy whose Dad just survived throat cancer or the young Kosovar girl?). That 17-yr. old from somewhere in Jersey had me fooled, didn't look the part but crooned his heart out like Frank Sinatra. Benson somebody and I think the judges agreed he was the best so far, look for him to go a long way in this competition. That overemotional chick who works in a shopping mall who they had pegged only for Broadway they let through after she begged and pleaded, a decent enough voice but she definitely needs to reign it in. There was the 16 yr. old girl chock full of Personality and a good voice for her young age who said "yo yo dawg" to Randy and overall I enjoyed the evening. I'm sure you're gonna get your tv critics to nitpick the thing (Linda Stasi) but I have to say it was a'ight:)

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Do liberals and conservatives share the same goals?

The fashionable answer is yes and I've been hearing alot of this lately but it really is a rather vague statement and is it even true? I'm gonna go with a no. Do liberals and conservatives both agree on you keeping more of your hard-earned money? Do liberals and conservatives look at the wealthy in the same way especially regarding the previous question? Do liberals and conservatives view Big Business and Labor the same way? I daresay liberals have a problem with Walmart and conservatives want you to work your ass off for even peanuts because by so doing you're setting yourself up for a mansion and Lamberghini down the road (HAH!!!) Do liberals and conservatives share the same goal of making abortion rare? Again the fashionable answer is yes but just saw on Yahoo News abortions increasing in major cities and in NYC it's almost like an Olympic Event so what have liberals done for us lately? liberals and conservatives view your right to self-defense the same way? Does this include the right to bear a firearm? Do liberals and conservatives view RACE the same way? (do liberals ever ask blacks why they commit so much crime?) our nation's security? war & peace? the cops? God and faith in general? SEX? (that there deserves its own blog) and so on down the list. Name any political issue and is the basic goal the same? Of course your personal health not to mention health care deserves another blog but I'm gonna go with libertarians just wanna be left alone and liberals would rather you eat an apple instead of a Funny Bone and seem rather obsessed about it at times. The same goals? I just don't see it.

Thursday, January 13, 2011


Some of the soapster's most recent comments about Big Government got me thinking and instead of directly responding to his previous remarks I thought I'd do a blog about how far back the problem really goes and today we're gonna focus on this thing called Bankruptcy. Now I always have First Impressions of everything, gut feelings, call it my Primeval Conservatism at work and if you provide a good or service for somebody and you don't get paid and that person or company or corporate entity does not have to pay you after hiding behind a bankrupty filing well that just seems immoral and unjust to me. Of course your initial reaction can me modified by other factors as I feel credit-card companies charge usurious (there's a word you don't hear anymore) interest rates and so the person legitimately trying to pay off his debt gets shafted. Now I'm no lawyer and don't know all the intricacies of bankruptcy law, there's this chapter and that chapter and a few subclauses but you take a large company that has gone into 3 billion dollars in debt let's say and then they get protected by the Bankruptcy Court and get a chance to reorganize their gangster outfit and even get a bailout or loan for their troubles. Well HOW exactly did they go 3 billion dollars into the hole in the first place? At what point in time did nobody notice what was going on? Where was the company auditor in all of this, asleep at the switch? Was there corruption, were honchos putting their hands in the till? The people who were responsible, have they been held to task and if need be prosecuted or at least told to look for other work? Well in our fictitious example (or maybe the better word is factitious) all these questions become moot as they in effect get rewarded for their past bad behavior. Now I have a few philosophical issues with Ayn Rand but at least in her vision if a company deserves to go out of business they deserve to go out of business and in a pure laissez-faire marketplace system businessmen would be forced to be more careful and then there's the question of how is a bankrupt company gonna pay off a government loan (well actually a bank loan but the government is somehow involved as always)? So a couple of immoral things have happened, the vendors who provided certain goods and services won't get paid and the company gets rewarded in effect for their past bad, irresponsible or even corrupt behavior by getting a loan because it's been deemed by Big Government they're too big to fail.

The Republicans "reformed" bankruptcy laws, the Dems want to swing back but I say we need to start at Square One again. IMO it's the bailouts that drive the Tea Party. I give you something, you don't pay me and the government protects you and even arranges to get you more money. If you don't see the dysfunction here then you're not a true conservative, maybe a neocon at best. President Obama in his speech at the AZ Memorial Service spoke briefly about what he called "the forces that divide us." Well no Mr. President it's the forces that disagree with you and your vision of what government should be but this old old polemical device seems to be a favorite of his. So in effect we are left with failing companies that have run their course, should be out of business by their own doing but are being propped up by the government. Remember when the Five & Dime (Woolworth's) went out of business? THAT'S the natural course of events or used to be and it may be Destiny's way of telling you you need to be doing something else with your life, accept it. The Question Before the Board today: should we get rid of ALL bankruptcy laws?:)

Monday, January 10, 2011

On the shooting

In the tragic wake of the shooting last Saturday in Arizona where Democratic Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was critically wounded you could almost have written the msm's script for them (actually strike the word "almost"). Channel-surfing last night and stopped to browse a little at "Meet the Press" (but only a little as I can't take much of this stuff lately) and caught key words like Tea Party (what did they have to do with it?), free speech, we have to watch the words we use, Sarah Palin (but of course!) etc. etc. This is the usual framing of the issue by the msm after such a tragic event and follows the narrative arc set by the George Tiller murder which is basically that right-wing rhetoric is ultimately responsible for these happenings. The young shooter, Jared Loughner is known to be anti-government and as soon as I read that in my morning paper the day after the massacre I already knew what the media spin would be. Now many people and groups have been "anti-government" down through the ages and many were lauded by the Left (e.g. Vietnam) so when did all of a sudden being against the government or anti-government if you will become

a bad thing?

Used to work with a Jamaican chef back in the day, always struck me as being very intelligent and he felt AIDS was invented by the U.S. government which when you stop to think about it why should there be a new disease? You had the CIA's MK-ULTRA's social experiment dosing unsuspecting citizens with the mind-altering LSD, a documented conspiracy so who's to say where one's grasp on reality ends and paranoia begins? At any rate the Moral of the Story is that assholes exist, have always existed and will always exist. It is said the Columbine shooters were obsessed with the movie The Matrix, does that mean the movie should never have been made or we can't enjoy it (although the sequels were existentially painful)? So to kind of drive the Point home here the Tea Party ain't the real problem or Glenn Beck or Sean Hannity or O'Reilly or Sarah Palin or your right-wing mailman......the simple fact of the matter is the existence of the asshole a problem eternally perplexing to Mankind that dates back to the Stone Age. I don't know what makes the Asshole tick and they can wreak all kinds of havoc but if Leviathan Government uses the case of the asshole who takes matters into his own hands to say you shouldn't criticize Leviathan Government and if the media backs them up then I see that as kind of a bigger problem and I think that's the whole point actually of the predictable media commentary (I almost said coverage, 'twould be nice if the msm could just get back to coverage). It's using such tragedies for political ends and then the second point after they're done bashing conservatives becomes Gun Control. It's really why I've been reading field guides to mammals lately:)

Saturday, January 08, 2011

Maybe it's me

but lately I just find people downright insufferable. I ain't blogging that much politically because really, if you get a boner over Boehner I can't help you. The real downside to John McCain losing the presidency is his omnipresence again on the Sunday morning political roundtables, frankly I 'd rather watch Gadget Girlz. I'd sooner do a blog on Buddhism than this current political season. I'm a misanthrope who can't even get off on Politics anymore. God if I read once again about how we can make the Tax Code better for everyone, just chuck the damn thing in the circular file already and be done with it. Can somebody tell me why Kim Kardashian is important? I ain't getting it. You know I mean this in all seriousness, I'd rather read a Field Guide to the Mammals than any of the current political bestsellers out there. A Self-Defense Guide will stand you in better stead than any of the crap churned out by Ann Coulter or James Carville. I'm going to services now, see you tomorrow or Monday:)