Sunday, October 31

Wins Presidency... exit polls show 50+% of vote

wouldn't it be nice if we could have the same outcome in america as the coutry of Uruguay had...

oh well... i am sure our courts may weigh heavily on this one... and what fun is that... it is supposed to be of the people...

i read an interesting fact about John Q. Adams' election (the 6th pres)... he didn't win the popular or the electoral... congress voted him in... the winner of that race was none other than Andrew Jackson, who whipped JQA in the next election... there were also three other elections around Harrison's time-frame i believe where the president elect didn't win the popular vote, but won the electoral college...

funny how the media acted like this past election (2000) was the first time any of this had ever happened... when in reality it was just the first time it allowed the media to make a profit and gain increased influence over the general public...

is one man changing corporate rules & regs???

i have come across more and more people in recent months who are getting aggravated with New York Attorney General Elliot Spitzer... they claim he has overstepping his boundaries and should not be suing any and every company he sees fit... this editorial piece from the buffalo news pretty much sums up that side of the argument when it reinforces a thought using quotes such as:

"I don't think he sees anyone standing up to rein him in," says Robert McTamaney of the New York law firm Carter, Ledyard & Milburn. "These cases he brings are almost impossible to defend against because of the adverse publicity."

Spitzer's tactics have led Delaware Attorney General Brady and Richard Baker, a Republican congressman from Louisiana, to say he is overstepping his enforcement authority to force companies to act as he sees fit.

Brady, also a Republican, asks whether it makes sense for an attorney general rather than companies to decide the best business practices.

"Most AGs haven't run a business," she says. "In the long run, more harm is done."
isn't that a convenient side... he shouldn't fight them because it makes business decisions for the company... well i suppose if they didn't act the way they did (shady and underhanded in a lot of instances), Spitzer would go after them like a starved pit bull devouring a blood-drenched rib eye... a guerrilla, as the Buffalo News purported, sounds a little weak to me, don't you think... i mean i've never seen a guerrilla or a monkey for that matter do anything vicious in person)...

i will say it... i like what he is doing because it appears the majority of the laws he is enforcing have gone unenforced for a long time... the flip side would be if they haven't been enforced then why start now... well because if it is a law it should be enforced and if it is going to be constantly overlooked than take the law off the books...

i wonder if his enforcement of these firms (e.g. insurance and investment bankers) went on for say 10+ years if they would consider moving their offices from NYC to New Jersey and have "no office" in NY so he could not pursue them???

just a thought or two...

Saturday, October 30

Going on Strike to Raise Your Wages???

i do not think i am following what the employees @ Volkswagen's European manufacturing plants are doing... if you don't like what you are getting paid you can either 1) work harder and become more effective by producing more per hour/day/whatever, 2) suck-up to someone who you think can get you a raise, 3) or apparently join a union...

so apparently option #1 is not going to happen because God forbid you obviously have to become more efficient if VW is losing money right now

apparently #2 can't work for 4,000 employees

so that leaves only #3 as an option for the VW employees (in their minds)... because it has been portrayed that only a union can help you get a better pay rate...

here is the problem with the logic in #3 - if you quit working for a period of time (via a strike) are you helping to produce anything??? NO, and you are actually making your employer lose more money!!! and by demanding higher wages without increasing your output (asking for the keys without buying the car) you can't be trusted by management... and from an economic standpoint if VW has to give into your demands to increase your wages for the same output as before and they are dead-set on saving costs you are forcing them to either internally develop or purchase better equipment that will reduce the number of employees needed to increase output... i.e. you are forcing them to fire you in the long run... unless you then switch to the aforementioned option #2

the workers at VW need to become more efficient for themselves, which should cause savings and better margins which will then translate to increased wages...

they are going about it in a selfish way, as they are risking getting their fellow union-mate fired for their own financial gain (via higher salary)

their thought process and attitudes can be summed up in the eloquent words of Red Foreman from That 70s Show - "Dumb Ass!!!"

Friday, October 29

Drinking a Dead Man's Beer???

A woman in Wisconsin has gone to a new level to get a beer!!! The woman dug up the remains of her lover-on-the-side after his burial in 1992 and drank the beer and smoked the cigarettes that were buried with him... not sure if i am following this one, but first no matter what the reason isn't it easier to go to the store and buy a six-pack instead of digging up buried beer... not as if we are looking for pirate treasure...

the detectives believe this may have occurred out of spite... arh - perhaps?!?!? here is the kicker for me... she did this almost 12 years ago and his family just now realized his remains weren't there... perhaps the ground was sunken or something or maybe they were looking for a drink or smoke???

anyway... chalk this one up as bizarre...

Wednesday, October 27

Jesus Walks - Kanye West

For those of you who haven't seen or heard of Kanye... you have to see this video

Chris Milk Version

this is by far one of the best videos i have seen... or at least most shocking...

anyway... it has the dirrty south as it used to be - bigotted and disgusting, some drug dealers and a breezy in church, and a KKK guy getting his ass burned...

check it out and let me know what you think

NCAA on probations in the Dirrty South

ESPN.com - NCF - Bad Dogs: Mississippi St. gets probation, more

So the dirrty south finally has a black headcoach (only decades after the rest of the country) and what does he step into... a big pile of someone else's crap... i wonder if Croom will ever truly get a chance to succeed???

his program was
"placed on probation by the NCAA for four years, stripped of eight football scholarships over the next two seasons and banned from postseason play this season because of recruiting violations."
the sad thing is the NCAA is screwing him and they should just fine the previous coach (who was fired) along with the school and their athletic director... i mean if you go after those who create the problems it will solve itself because they will be too much of a liablity to hire...

the funny part of it is that Mississippi State is banned from the post-season this year... ouch - who gives a damn about that... they suck this year and have no chance of making a bowl game this year... execpt for the sorry last game of the season with 'ole piss university...

Tuesday, October 26

Southwest doesn't fear oil prices? No kidding Wendy

At Southwest, No Fear of Fueling

i find this article very amusing... what did Wendy Zellner (the author of this article and Dallas bureau chief of "business week") just realize that SWA was hedging fuel... it's been a know fact for the last five years, and no one else in the industry wanted to do it because at the time SWA was buying at or slightly above the market price...

well dang, the "big" boys go broke and now they can't buy hedges... i really feel sorry for them... here's what SWA's been able to do so far...

already has hedged more than 80% of its fuel needs for next year with prices capped at the equivalent of $25 per barrel of crude, 60% in 2006 at $31 a barrel, and over 40% in 2007 at $30 a barrel. That's far below where the market is betting that oil prices will be.

and their competitor American Airlines in terms of hedging is only...
4% hedged in the fourth quarter at $30 a barrel and is virtually unhedged for 2005 -- much like most of the legacy carriers.
i sorta feel sorry for the dying airlines but not really... how long does it take to look around at what your competition is doing and adopting similar strategies if your competitor is beating the crap out of you day in and day out???

back to the amusing part... does Wendy know this was happening before the past few months or did she get a hot tip from a player at SWA... come on Wendy... just tell us if you are pumping the stock for your or someone else's gain!!!

Me & Kili



i climbed Mount Kilimanjaro this summer (in Tanzania, Africa)... less than six months after dislocating my hip... it was a great experience, and i will try to post some on it later in the year... one of the main things i noticed was that people from Europe (where i grew-up during elementary school) have changed their perception on marriage--- they don't want to get married (at least that's what every European i spoke with said)...

this was the common quote
"why would i get married, i just don't see the point"
that is either a very sad statement or a very enlightening statement... for my sake i hope it is the former as i am married, and believe it is worth the work, sacrafice, and time i put into it...

California and Healthcare

California Healthcare - forced on companies with 200+ employees

Quite a funny thing California is doing... forcing employers with over 200 employees to pay for at least 80% of the health insurance costs... do you think if this passes and you work in California that either A) you won't get a raise until the 80% is saved by the company or B) your employer will move from California if they have the opportunity???

Forcing the employer to pay for healthcare... that seems pretty odd... last i read and learned from conversations with insurance companies - when an employee has a vested interest in their health insurance (i.e. greater than 20%, but less than 20% may work depending on the percentages) they tend to use it more effectively (i.e. not going to the doctor for cough syrup or tylenol instead going to the pharmacy for OTC drugs) because they know how much insurance really costs and how their "non-critical" office visits and claims bump up their insurance premium...

Anyway back to forcing employers to pay for healthcare... not sure on this, but i cannot see how this will stimulate the california economy... it would appear to have the opposite affect...

and back to Wal-Mart being restricted from building in many California communities... God forbid you allow your lower-class and lower-middle class save money by shopping at WM... seems funny that you wouldn't want your neighbor to be able to save money on everyday purchases...