Friday, January 23, 2009

Random Stuff for a Friday

There's just too much going on, and I'm suffering from blog input overload, so once again I'll just offer a few riffs on things in the news. Don't'll get you one day closer to Cartoon Saturday.

Yesterday Michelle wondered about a Treasury Secretary (that would be Mr Geithner, since confirmed for the post) who can't correctly pay his taxes. As I mentioned in my comment, had she or I been guilty of not paying many thousands of dollars in taxes - for any reason - we'd be in jail. Mr Geithner has not set a very good example for the nation's taxpayers. 'Nuff said.

A few days back I mentioned the story of "Natalie Dylan," who is auctioning off her virginity to help pay for college. How much is the ability to deflower a virgin worth? As of yesterday, it seems to be about $3.8 million. This interesting article looks at the history, sociology, and economics of virginity. As for me, I'm not bidding. Not only don't I have the petty cash to outbid a $3.8 million offer, but Agnes would kill me and I wouldn't be around to enjoy it.

According to recent news reporting John Thain, the former CEO of the former Merrill Lynch, spent about $1.2 million to redecorate his office at the firm while it was in the process of collapsing and contributing to the smoking hole where the economy used to be. The $1.2 million figure included an $87,000 area rug, a $68,000 credenza, $28,000 worth of curtains (those must have been some big windows), and a $1,400 wastebasket. A $1,400 wastebasket? I'd be afraid to throw anything into it I hadn't ironed first. One of my coworkers sent me this quote yesterday...he was vague about where he found it, but regardless of its pedigree, I think it about sums up the attitudes that got us to this point:

"You're probably going to spend your life working for a company that'd kill you and sell your organs if it got the CEO a third gold-plated bathtub for himself and his hookers. You can be talented, well-trained, highly experienced, and a loyal employee and they'll still ship your job overseas if it'll let the CEO get more hookers on bath night."

Speaking of useless, self-important windbags, Rush Limbaugh has expressed his goodwill and support to the new president as only he can. I love it when someone is willing to moderate his personal beliefs and work with the other party in an atmosphere of friendship and positive cooperation. Or not.

And finally, from the Department of Lost Causes comes the news that President Obama has appointed former Senator George Mitchell as his Special Envoy for the Middle East. I don't know what Senator Mitchell ever did to piss off the President, but it must have been big to earn this job. No matter how well he did in engineering a peace agreement in Northern Ireland (and that, Brownie, was a real heckuva job), he is being asked to punch the ultimate tar baby here. It takes two sides to make peace, and both sides have got to want it. Unfortunately, in the Middle East neither side wants it except on terms the other side can't or won't accept. I still say Bilbo's Mideast Peace Plan is the best one, and perhaps Senator Mitchell may want to consider it: build a wall 200 feet high and 50 feet thick around the entire region, fill the area so enclosed to the top with sand, and start over.

That's enough for now. It's Friday. Tonight, we dance! And then comes the weekend. And then comes ... well ... let's not talk about that now.

Have a good day. Tomorrow is Cartoon Saturday. Be here.



John A Hill said...

I think that it was Al Franken that said, "Rush Limbaugh is a big fat idiot." Of course, Al Franken isn't much better!

wv: harindoc

The Mistress of the Dark said...

Rush apparently is losing it or just getting old.

Malaise Inc said...

$1.2M to redecorate an office is chump change compared to the $3-4B in retention bonuses that Merrill Lynch paid last December. The comment I noted was one that questioned why they have to pay retention when there are no other jobs to be had. Getting another regularly scheduled paycheck is sufficient retention incentive in this job market.

an orange county girl said...

oh rush. so desperately trying to stay relevant.

Mike said...

Rush the drug addict passing judgment. Surprise surprise.

fiona said...

Someone needs to be shopping in "Wally World"...!

KKTSews said...

Have you priced drapes lately? Actually, that seems not unreasonable to me, assuming we're talking large, expansive windows in some wonderful office tower. The rest, though, is sickening. and the bonuses! Sheesh, will it never stop?