Great Musical Duos!

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There are so many to mention (hello Simon and Garfunkel), but I think we have a new one!

Why Unions Must Grow???? To Pay For Their Own Existence!

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From a recent MSNBC article highlighting the UAW’s recent attempts to gain a foothold in foreign owned non-union auto manufacturers. Exhibit (A)

The United Auto Workers union is staking its future on the kind of struggle it hasn’t waged since the 1930s: a massive drive to organize hostile factories.

…the target is foreign car makers, whose workers have rebuffed the union repeatedly. Specifically, Reuters has learned, the union is going after U.S. plants owned by German manufacturers Volkswagen AG and Daimler AG, seen as easier nuts to crack than the Japanese and South Koreans.

It’s a battle the UAW cannot afford to lose. By failing to organize factories run by foreign automakers, the union has been a spectator to the only growth in the U.S. auto industry in the last 30 years. That failure to win new members has compounded a crunch on the UAW’s finances, forcing it to sell assets and dip into its strike fund to pay for its activities.

Note the main concern. It’s not about unions actually helping the workers much, it’s about maintaining the unions administrative expenses. And in the entire article, UAW President Bob King never makes the case as to why the workers would be so much better off if they unionized. And, to top it off, how do you convince anyone to unionize when this fact is out there for the working world to see:

Workers know that almost every job lost at U.S. car factories in the last 30 years has occurred at a unionized company, while almost every job gained has come at a non-union company.

The union enthusiast of the world have to face facts…. As bad as things are right now, it’s NOT the 1930’s. I have nothing against unions. They were a necessary and constructive force in their day. But the world changed around them, and they were far far too slow to adapt to those changes.

Favorite Moment Of 2011. Pt 1

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The death of a great boxing career!!!!!

Quantity vs Quantity – A Talking Points Take-Down.

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As the current unthinking talking point reminds us, Yes, Ronald Reagan did raise the debt ceiling 18 times, as opposed to Barrack Obama’s measly 5, soon to be 6. Of course, if he wins re-election, and the frequency of debt ceiling raises continue, this President will have approved about the same number of DCR’s as his distant predecessor. However, a far more important value to consider, in the former President’s eight years, the total dollar amount of those increases was about 2.5 trillion for 18 raises. This latest DCR, which will happen automatically if I’m reading things right, will have the Obama administration (AND the Congress) surpass that amount in just 6! And that only took three years, as opposed to Reagan’s eight!

That’s an impressive accomplishment indeed!!!!

If this gravy train continues to go on the same damned track we’re on, in a ceteris paribus fashion, assuming the President wins the 2012 contest, we are looking at a debt increase of close to 9 TRILLION DOLLARS! That, my friends, would be a doubling of the total debt incurred before Barrack Obama took office in 2008.

And no, I’m not placing all the blame on this President. Both side are culpable for the exponential increase, and the failure to put special interests aside, chuck the lobbyist establishment, and get things done, all because they want to position themselves for the next elections.

History will not look kindly to this bunch of politicians… And I use that word with all the bile I can muster!!!!

PS. To show my willingness to be unbiased, the damning chart was borrowed from a liberal blog dutifully echoing the talking point!

Caption This Wednesday!

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Christmas is over… Hey, the light faeries need to eat too!!!!

One for the good people of Carlsbad….. Not being experienced hunters, Rob and friends are going to get a shock when they stick a fork in that thing!

♫ Turn the lights out
The part’s over…. ♫

Kevin Kirby, 1969 – 2011. RIP.

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Kevin was a close friend of mine who died this last week-end. This is why I haven’t blogged since Christmas. Just haven’t been in the mood to write.

Kevin had a terrific sense of humor, and was one of the smartest people I know. He was a true geek in every sense of the word, played D & D and Magic the Gathering and would often pull a Star Trek or Star Wars reference out of his crack at the drop of a hat! He was a couple years younger than I which makes his death somehow suck even more. My friends, especially the younger ones, shouldn’t be leaving this world yet.

Since Kevin loved to laugh, I’ll post a picture he featured on his FaceBook page and end with the last joke I remember him telling. It’s what he would have liked I think.

What’s brown and sticky????

A stick!!!!!

PS. Kevin liked his beer, and paid the price for it. He died of an esophageal hemorrhage, which is a byproduct of cirrhosis of the liver, a condition he was suffering from. So… My friends who are fond of the bottle, PLEASE take note. I don’t mean to lecture, and I know Kevin would verbally slap me for bringing this up at this time. That said, I lost a great friend, and feel that if nothing else, his untimely death can be a lesson for others.

Caption This Tuesday!

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After Paul McCartney snubbed his request, President Obama finally found someone who would sing “Ebony And Ivory” with him.

“Now… See… I haven’t lost… the youth vote… It’s… right HERE!”

Abolish Corporate Personhood?

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Not so fast, says this person!

Incandescent Bulb Ban Burns Out!

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Good… But the fact that it was there in the first place illuminates the fact that most of those in Congress are dimmer than the bulbs they tried to ban… I guess they simply didn’t like the competition!!!!!

Christopher Hitchens Has Succumbed To Cancer.

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Sad to report that we have lost one of the most dynamic voices of our generation. With the exception of being an ardent atheist, he was impossible to pin down and categorize as belonging to any one political movement or ideology. He truly called them as he saw them. Without question, he truly was his own man. He burned as bright as anyone I can recall in my lifetime, and now the flame is no more. I can’t say I always agreed with him, but he was one HELL of a writer, and I am a better writer because of his influence! He taught me to let my guard down and don’t fear what you think or believe. Still, to be 1 / 1000th as good a writer as he was…

I’ve read his treatise on Thomas Paine (a kindred spirit if there ever way one) and many of his Slate and Vanity Fair pieces, including the last few he managed to squeeze out despite his illness. [here] But, of all the things I’ve read from this brilliant man, this is the one blindingly obvious insight I will always remember:

“By all means, stupid people should be represented, but not by stupid people.”

I have his autobiography on my reading cue. I break that open tonight.

Goodbye to one of the greats.

Chris Hitchens – 1949 – 2011.