Well there are winners and outlaws and leaders and lovers

I was wondering today, what every happened to those videos that the marketing department made? You know the ones, that they showed at the annual awards thing? Yeah, those. Anthony, why aren’t they on youtube? That was some quality stuff. But I digress.

Here’s something that will make anyone who’s stayed with me or lived here or worked on a house project with me jump with glee. I bought my topsiders in Santa Barbara. I lived there between 1980 and 1984. I bought my topsiders in Santa Barbara when I lived there.

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Play the drum slowly.

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I have walked countless dogs, gone to countless beaches, snuck down to a myriad of corner stores, changes innumerable light bulbs, painted a few houses, watched years of football, cleaned endless floors and now, play the drum slowly. Go softly into the night my good friends. I’ll miss you.

Why you don’t want to piss of a blogger.

Because we’ll post something like this on the internet. That was such a no brainer.

A reminder to all the folks who worked for Alliance Title Company on December 12, 2007, send your stuff into the Labor Commissioner. They’re serious and you should be too. Ping me if you need the address again, although I think it’s in the comments here somewhere. They need to see that your checks came from Mercury Companies, not Alliance Title Company, and that your W2 says Mercury Companies. (which it does)

Speaking of the Patty Hauptman, (if I don’t use her name liberally people can’t find my useless drivel in the search engines) Did you know that Patty and Jerry belong to POPA? Oh Hell, let me quote Groucho, “I wouldn’t want to belong to a club that would have me as a member”…or Patty Hauptman. What’s POPA you ask? The Pilatus Owners and Pilots Association. Think she’ll use the private jet to show up to the hearing on Thursday? Yeah, I know, she ain’t showing. I’m guessing John Harritt isn’t buzzing around in that thing anymore either. Commercial sucks eh Johnny?

The big problem with Easter is these.

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Yeah, that’s a giant pile of Cadbury mini-eggs. Approximately the same amount that I shoveled into my face this afternoon. Tomorrow one of my co-workers will remove the arms from my chair so I can get my ass into it. The person who bought them and put them out is Satan.

I took the dogs for a walk tonight when I got home, because my lungs are still FUBAR and running is out of the question. After falling into the Cadbury mini-egg trough I thought a nice walk to Sacramento would probably be in order. I settled for three miles. We passed our vet on the walk so I decided to have Rita weighed. They were very cool about it, except the damned dog has lost weight! So this weekend I’ve asked the old man to help and prepare about 30 cups of high calorie homemade supplement for her. It will have organ meat, macaroni and cheese, eggs, molasses, oats and if the old man’s lucky, I’ll find some tripe and mackerel. OK, Rita will be lucky, not the old man. She’s going on puppy food this weekend, cheaper stuff than what she’s been getting, probably the Chicken Soup puppy food and a good amount of my secret formula for a snack.

Broke the spirits of a lesser man

People will tell me how it’s so much more complicated that this, but the bottom line is we just spent $30 million in tax payer money to bail out a company, so JP Morgan could pick it up at fire sale prices.  Our government reacted quickly and efficiently.  Lawrence White of NYU’s School of Business was quoted as saying:

“I know things are a little dicey out there, but we can’t have the Fed going around protecting everybody in sight,” White said. “You take risks and you lose, you’re supposed to be shown the door, and these guys are not being shown the door.”

No, they’re not, and you have to wonder about the whole thing.  I personally know of three owners who’s homes have  been foreclosed upon.   (not counting the REO we put our parents in)  The government was neither swift, nor efficient in reacting to the “mortgage meltdown”.  Somehow Mr. White’s words do apply to the average Joe trying to make it day by day, but not to the Country Club set at Bear Sterns.  If somebody doesn’t wake the Hell up sometime very very soon, we are in deep shit.  We are tediously close to a run on the banks.  We are tediously close to bread lines.  Who can sit there and say that on this day, right now, that you’re better off than you were four years ago?

I remember during the dot com bomb everyone was talking about precious metals.  Gold was around $300 an ounce which is what it had been for quite some time.  I thought it was a terrible strategy, and at the time I was right.  Today gold is $1010.08 as I write this.  For those who don’t follow this sort of thing, what that means is that the roll of Charmin in the other room is worth more than a dollar right now.

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Don’t run out and buy gold, it’s too high.  Look at the last time it was this high.

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Yeah, the Reagan Administration.  Here it is adjusted to 2006 dollars.

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And this chart doesn’t even take the last two years into account.

Let’s look at Return on Investment.  I agreed with going into Afghanistan.  I did not agree with waiting 32 days to do it.  If I ruled the world we’d have had planes in the air by noon on September 11th, going anywhere, but in the air.  Yes, we’re going through your airspace, we’re sorry we didn’t have time to do the diplomatic thing, but we’re under attack.  I would have told the Taliban we’re coming and when those Marines tap on your door tonight, you’d better be handing them the entire leadership team from Al Qaeda or the Marines will be leaving and by morning the landscape will be glass.  So I’m not a pacifist.  I have yet to see one compelling piece of evident for us to be in Iraq.  As of today, it’s cost us $503 BILLION dollars.  It will go over $800 billion this year.  We have accomplished little beyond deposing a blustering impotent dictator and creating a hot bed for real terrorists.  Aren’t we the clever ones?  We can’t take care of our injured soldiers, we can’t take care of our poor, we can’t educate our children, but we can build schools in Iraq, which I promise you will be used to create more fanatics once we’re gone.  What’s wrong here?  We can’t impose our will on other countries anymore than I can impose my will on any one of you.  I can argue my case and you can tell me I’m full of crap or agree with me.  That’s what America’s all about.  My right to say it, your right to tell me I’m full of crap, my right to disagree with your assertion.

If we had that much money to spend on a godforsaken little hell hole in the desert, what could that money have bought back here?  In my congressional district we could have had 635 new Public Safety Officers, or four new elementary schools or 511 elementary school teachers.  Well, we didn’t have that money to spend, and I’ll be long gone when the debt that was run up for this debacle is paid off.  Right now, my little town heaving under the weight of the last budget cuts.  Teachers have been let go, cops are scaled back and coincidentally crime is up.  There was a shoot out at the Safeway Sunday night.  Really.  The Safeway.  I always thought that Jimmy Carter was the worst President ever.  I didn’t like Reagan, but Carter was a worse President.  Jimmy Carter isn’t even the best worst any more.  What we can learn from this is that doing nothing doesn’t work.  Problems don’t go away if you ignore them.  At this point even Barney has to be questioning the strategy.