Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Holy Crap! Here comes the Digital Nag. Um, I'm Opting Out Right Now

I was reading a list of Tech Trends for 2015 and this made me look for whatever settings I need to turn this crap off.
“You have an 8:30 a.m. meeting with your supervisor. Last time you met, your heart rate was high. Go to bed early tonight, don’t drink coffee before the meeting and leave home early—traffic will be heavy.” 

That’s how much smarter predictive personal assistants like Google Now and Microsoft’s Cortana will begin to get, thanks to increased information coming from our bodies, cars, Web searches, calendars, GPS location and more. For some reason, Apple has yet to endow Siri with predictive powers. Perhaps that, too, will change in 2015.
Um, wow that sounds like a scary Big Brother style thing if I ever heard one. "Your heart rate has been elevated Dave and you are punching the steering wheel. I am shutting the car down and pulling it to the side of the road. I am flooding the compartment with sedative gas to make sure you sedated" said in a HAL voice. The junction where cyeberspace meets meatspace is a very scary place. That would be a major reason why you don't want to buy a smart watch or have a need to shut down any biometric data getting to the Internet.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

2014 Predictions: A Look Back

What really happened in blue


1. The Syrian war will grind on without the world taking much notice. Eventually there will be a cease-fire brokered by the Russians and the Saudis and the country will be virtually partitioned. In will take years before the UN actually gets around to an actual partitioning of the country.

Partially correct. The war has ground on with the world not taking too much notice. However ISIS as a new player in town have received all sorts of notice. The Syrian civil war seems to be sort of ignored by Russia and the Saudis for the most part. The Saudis do want to get rid of ISIS though.

2. The Sochi Olympics will overshadowed by fear and uncertainty. The Russian military presence coupled with the threat of terrorism will be a big story in the games and will cut into the enjoyment. There will be several terrorist attacks in Russia during the games but none at the actual Olympic village although it is feared.

Wrong. Sochi Olympics were sort of a success. No terrorists attacks because the Russians clamped down on security on the whole country. Also there wasn't really a terrorist threat as far as I remember.

3. Russia will slowly start to destabilize as cheap oil from the US brings oil prices down. More and more pressure will be put on Putin from reformers and terrorists and his government will waver. He holds on to power but has to put some reforms into place to solidify himself.

Deferred to next year. He hasn't put any reforms in place yet but cheap oil might slowly be unmaking him. The Ruble is damaged and they have to charge 17% on their debt in order to make it attractive. If oil stays cheap for months this one might happen.

4. The US will quietly leave Afghanistan and the Taliban will make peace with the Afghan government. This war will slowly leave the consciousness of the US government and a tentative peace will come over the area.

Mostly correct. US is leaving Afghanistan for the most part with little ceremony. The longest war is US history is over and its up to the Afghans to keep the peace. However, the Taliban isn't making any peace treaties and might be the bitter-enders everyone fears.

5. The World Cup in Brazil will be a huge success and will usher the country onto the world stage. Much of what people see are the large gulfs between the rich and the poor and see how bad poor Brazilians live. It will bring in much needed reforms that will help the average Brazilian for decades.

Partially correct. The World Cup was huge and people did see how bad some Brazilians live. However, there were only a few demonstrations and nothing has really changed for the poor in Brazil.

6. The Democrats will retain the Senate by a slim 2 vote margin. The GOP will again control the House. There is a new spirit of bipartisanship as various GOP White House hopefuls hope to get the centrist vote. The "Conservative Industrial Complex" of the Heritage Action, Freedom Works, Club for Growth, Rush Limbaugh etc. power will be diminished by a large margin as men like Paul Ryan and Chris Christie try to jockey for the center in time for the next election. The GOP makes fewer gaffs and does not shut down the government and welcomes more women and minorities into their ranks.

Partially correct. The Dems lost and the Senate belongs to the GOP by a landslide. The GOP not only won the House they did so with the biggest majority since the Herbert Hoover was in office. There has been a little bipartisanship with the last continuing budget resolution that was past. The CIC is still potent but their power seems to have diminished with the Tea Parties power at a low ebb. The GOP made nearly no gaffs and went 1 and 1 on government shutdown attempts. They did welcome a few women (Joni Ernst, Elise Stefanik) and minorities (Mia Love) this past election cycle.


1. Tapering will be a non-event with the FED slowly withdrawing the bond buying and the market hardly reacting. Yellen will be confirmed without issue and kind of go about her business without creating much uproar. The economy will grow strongly at 3% or higher and prosperity will replace quite a bit of the dark clouds of past years. Housing prices will rise and the stock market will stay near record high levels for much of the year.

Totally Correct. Tapering was a whimper and not a bang. Yellen was confirmed quite easily and there really hasn't been much uproar in her tenure so far. The GDP grew after a bad 1st quarter due to the blizzard with a 5% number in the 4th quarter. Housing prices are higher and the stock market was near a record high for most of the year.

2. Energy Independence will finally be realized in many parts of the US. Gas prices will start to come down and the US will decouple from much of the world oil market. The Oil Majors will have record profits and the Energy Sector will lead the rest of the market.

Partially correct. We are slowly moving toward energy independence. Gas prices are coming down and oil prices are a multi-year lows. However, the energy sector was the worst performing of all sectors thanks to the low oil prices.

3. There will be a true split between old tech (HP, Cisco, IBM, Dell) and new tech (Samsung, Google, Apple, Facebook, Twitter) and their stock prices will tell the tale. The personal computer will hang on and grow modestly as companies just can't shake the form factor. The consumer side will be a mess with double digit losses in growth from year to year. Microsoft will again flat-line as the Xbox One will pretty much carry the company for 2014.

Partially correct. There was a split between some old tech (IBM, Dell is private now, HP is floundering) but Samsung is floundering, Google stock is lower, but Facebook and Twitter did well this year. Personal Computers still seem entrenched in business and the rapid decline has stabilized. The consumer side however is growing great guns with Apple selling piles of stuff. Also Microsoft has taken off and is firing on all cylinders.

4. The Phablet will be very popular in 2014 with more people carrying around an oversized phone instead of a tablet and a phone. Samsung will again lead the pack with Apple failing to bring about a similar Phablet form-factor in 2014.

Wrong. I'm sure someone is buying Phablets but they don't seem to reside in the US. I really haven't seen many people carrying them for the most part.

5. Facebook will finally seem long in the tooth and will start to loose much of its cache to Twitter and other social media. They will go on a spate of acquisitions to stay relevant and swallow other social media sites like it did Instagram.

Partially correct. Facebook seems to be fairly stable with more main stream use then before. It now seems to be the province of your grandmother and aunt and not of your son or daughter though. The young have moved to Twitter and Snapchat and other forms of social media. Facebook did buy a few of companies though for outrageous valuation (WhatsApp for $19 billion!) and Oculus VR ($2 billion?)

6. Here are the end of 2014 numbers:

Prediction                    Actual
Dow: 17100                 17970
NASDAQ: 4210            4774
S&P 500: 1941              2080  
Eur/Dollar: 1.15              1.21 (close)
10 Year Bond: 3.10%      2.18 (big miss)
Gold: $1240 an ounce   $1200 (close)
Oil: $72 a barrel             $53.89 (big miss)

Monday, December 29, 2014

David Tepper Says 8 to 10% upside in the Market: Time to Buy

We do have a US economy that is growing at 5% and stimulus happening in Japan. Hopefully, we can get some wage growth and he will look like a prophet.
"I think we'll have a good year," he said in a phone conversation on Monday, referring to 2015. Fair value, he said is a range, not a specific number and with the S&P having a price-earnings ratio of 16, stocks could rise to the upper band of the range, about 18. Also, central bank easing plays a key role in fueling stocks' rise. 

"You have people responding to deflation all over the place. First thing that goes up when people try to fight deflation is asset prices," Tepper said.
I guess only the FED could screw things up by raising rates too soon.

Credit Where Credit is Due: Obama is About to Hit a Home Run on Trade Deals

I would be willing to give him a hearty round of applause because these trade deals are going to be big for America.

Negotiations for an ambitious Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal involving a dozen countries from Asia and the Americas are quietly nearing the finishing line. Another historic agreement, the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) between the United States and the European Union, also shows signs of becoming a reality.
It might be one of the only things that will strait up help the middle class as well.
As such, it is estimated that TTIP will boost U.S. household incomes by $865 annually and create 750,000 new U.S. jobs, while TPP would generate about $1,230 per household by 2025–a great boost without a dime of deficit spending, and a strong bonus on top of the $10,000 annual income gains American households have already scored due to post-war trade opening
New jobs and hiring is just what this country needs. One thing that will be great is more European and Japanese goods appearing in our stores. If we can get German and Belgian chocolate and the McShrimp from Japanese McDonalds I will be a happy person indeed.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

How to Make $1.5 Million? Let the Social Security Administration Invest in the Stock Market

I wish they would just put the amount we all pay into Social Security into a special fund that is run by Blackrock or something. They get huge fees and the fiduciary responsibility to all Americans to grow their portfolios. This growth is just insane.

He's retiring at the end of this year, and he's dependent on his portfolio for most all of his income. Given his present portfolio valuation, a longer-than-normal life expectancy of 90, and the portfolio earning only a 1% real rate of return during retirement, he could take out $43,000 next year and increase his yearly benefit by inflation. That's 135% more than the $18,250 Social Security benefit!

If he chose to withdraw only Social Security's scheduled benefits, his portfolio at age 90 would be worth just about $1.5 million. Market-base financing gives Ernie options. Risky scheme? You decide.
Yup, this theoretical person just became a millionaire at retirement just by taking the money he paid into Social Security all his life and had Blackrock,Warren Buffet, or someone like that invest it for him. This doesn't even count his 401K or IRA or anything. This is just his Social Security money growing over his entire lifetime. Makes you want to opt out of Social Security and convert it into an IRA or something.

I think Rush is Out of His Mind: Idris Elba Would Make a Great James Bond

I think Limbaugh needs to start thinking outside of the box because I think Idris Elba would make a great James Bond.
After emails were leaked between Sony execs eyeing Idris Elba for the film franchise, Rush Limbaugh offered his two (offensive) cents on the matter.
During his news program, the controversial commentator expressed his concern over the Avengers: Age of Ultron star stepping into the Bond role.
"James Bond is a total concept put together by Ian Fleming. He was white and Scottish. Period. That is who James Bond is," Limbaugh said.
"But now [they are] suggesting that the next James Bond should be Idris Elba, a black Briton, rather than a white from Scotland. But that's not who James Bond is."
James Bond is an idea more than an actual man at this point. In fact Limbaugh again gets it wrong because the James Bond character was half-Scottish and half-Swiss. Bond just needs to be good looking, suave, and able to fight his way out of any situation. Elba could pull that off quite easily.

Plus you get away from the thug factor that makes me not want to watch the Daniel Craig version of James Bond. I just never seen James Bond as some SAS remorseless killer type of person. Craig always seems to have those dead eyes and I'm just waiting until they change him out for someone else. In any case Elba would make a great Bond and I would be back in the theaters for sure to see him mix it up. 

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

The Terrible Pessimism about this Country

I think something needs to be done about this state of affairs and it should be done soon.
What I see in almost all walks of life is a sense of pessimism about the country.  The pie is contracting. People work much harder to stay where they are, the ability to guarantee the same life for your children is declining, and people feel they can’t afford to be as generous about anything. You have to be warier of new people, resentful of people around you, you can’t expand the benefits available to others without hurting your own chances and those of your children.
This attitude is what is wrong with America today. Everyone is so pessimistic after the Great Recession of 2008. Part of that is that Obama and the GOP really don't seem to be doing anything for the common person anymore. Obama is trying to help people making minimum wage and the GOP is seen as helping the 1%. Both of those groups is like less than 20% of the total population.

Everything seems like a 0-sum game where if someone else wins you are losing. That really isn't the truth though. We can expand the earned income tax credit quite easily and that would put thousands of dollars in each persons pocket. The GDP gains would offset the revenue loss that would come from that tax gain. There needs to be more out of Washington than increase the minimum wage and cut taxes on the wealthy. Maybe the GOP Congress with Ryan doing tax reform will do it but I have to doubt it for the most part. I think the entire 0-sum idea needs to be destroyed for the most part because it is destroying the good things in America.

"Nut-rage" Korean Air Exec Faces Criminal Charges

Wow this escalated quickly.

Seoul Western Prosecutors' Office said Wednesday that Cho Hyun-ah faces charges including inflight violence and changing a flight route. The current airline executive, a 57-year-old man surnamed Yeo, faces charges of pressuring airline employees to cover up the incident, according to an official at the prosecutors' office who spoke on condition of anonymity because the person was not authorized to speak about the matter.
Sometimes it is better to let the nuts stay in the bag and then put out a memo after you land. She would have kept her job and everything would have been fine. Instead she got crazy and messed things up for herself.

Sony Chooses Freedom: Going to Air "The Interview" After all

Well it seems that Sony grew some balls (or maybe the White House assured them its okay) and are going to show "The Interview."

Sony Pictures reversed course Tuesday and said it would release “The Interview” on Christmas Day, though only a small number of theaters signed on to show the controversial farce amid fears of reprisals from a group of hackers and frustration with the studio’s quick-changing distribution strategy.
They should have just released it to begin with and see what happens after that. If North Korean sappers decide to attack theaters then that is an act of war and we bomb them into the stone age. In any case it seems that we are finally getting a little backbone from somewhere or another.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

It Is Official North Korea Now Owns Hollywood: Paramount Cancels Showing of Kim-Jong-Il Mocking "Team America: World Police"

I wonder what kind of films the new head of Hollywood Kim-Jong-Un is planning for blockbuster season? Maybe something with Dennis Rodman and Jennifer Lawrence called "Ew! 2: The Sickening"

It only took a few veiled threats (did people really think North Korean sapper teams are going to be bombing theaters) and they have shut down freedom of expression for an entire industry.

Forget those plans by Alamo Drafthouse Cinema and other theaters to run Team America: World Police in place of The Interview. The Austin-based chain says that Paramount has now decided not to offer South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone’s 2004 satire that focuses on Kim Jong-il, the late father of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Hollywood Proves to be Spineless Neville Chamberlain's: Pulls "The Interview" because of Hacker Threats

Well it seems the hackers now run Hollywood.
The drama surrounding the hack attack on Sony (which federal sources are now linking to North Korea) to derail the Seth Rogen-James Franco comedy The Interview came to an unexpected climax today when Sony announced that it would no longer release the movie on Christmas Day. And many of the actors’ Hollywood colleagues are perplexed and/or downright furious with the studio’s decision, which follows threats of violence against theaters screening the film and the decision by five major movie chains not to run it.
I guess that means North Korea is off limits when it comes to movie making. I'm sure other rogue nations are now changing their cash flow from nuclear weapons (which are so 70s anyway) to funding hacking groups. These nations can do more with some email releases and some veiled threats then they ever hoped to do with a few nukes. I think the Cyberwar has begun and Hollywood has just did a Neville Chamberlain. 

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Idiot Ted Cruz Commits Own Goal: The Dems Rushed Through Nominees Because of His Boneheaded Move

This guy shouldn't run for dog catcher let alone President in 2016.

They criticized the way the Texas senator caused the Senate to be in session late Friday night and through Saturday because he refused to drop procedural objections to passage of a $1.1 trillion bill to keep the government running beyond midnight Saturday.

Cruz's actions also inadvertently gave Democratic leaders an opportunity to advance nearly two dozen of Obama's nominees, including Sarah Saldana, to head the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency.
These nominees probably couldn't get through in 2015 because of GOP control and Obama would have to name someone else. Instead of going home for the weekend Idiot Cruz made them stay because of his objections to the spending bill. So they stayed and voted through their people in response. I think the GOP should censure him and boot him out of certain committees for this infraction.

Walking Dead Knocks off Sundy Night Football in Ratings War: Should the NFL be worried?

It seems some people surviving the zombie apocalypse is more popular than ever.
It turns out the NFL, sports' modern-day television ratings king, is not unbeatable.

During the fall, the super popular AMC drama The Walking Dead scored higher ratings in the all-important 18-to-49-year-old demographic in five out of eight weeks while going against NBC's Sunday Night Football.
I wonder if the NFL should be worried or not. They are still the champion of sports in terms of money and ratings but a TV drama beat them in the important demographics for the first time in decades. I have read that the NFL is becoming less popular to Millennials. This demographic will keep increasing their earning power going forward and those are the ones that Walking Dead just vultured away from the NFL.

I mean the for me the NFL is pretty much the 49ers and the players on my fantasy team. If neither of them are involved I would rather watch college football instead. In fact I would easily switch over to Walking Dead from Sunday Night Football if the game is boring or even if it is close but I have no fantasy players on either team. If I didn't play fantasy or had a team I would probably rarely watch NFL games.  

It turns out the NFL, sports' modern-day television ratings king, is not unbeatable.
During the fall, the super popular AMC drama The Walking Dead scored higher ratings in the all-important 18-to-49-year-old demographic in five out of eight weeks while going against NBC's Sunday Night Football.
- See more at:
It turns out the NFL, sports' modern-day television ratings king, is not unbeatable.
During the fall, the super popular AMC drama The Walking Dead scored higher ratings in the all-important 18-to-49-year-old demographic in five out of eight weeks while going against NBC's Sunday Night Football.
- See more at:

Thursday, December 11, 2014

It Seems that Americans are No Longer Supporting Gun Control: African Americans Lead the Turn Around

It seems that all the gun-grabbing by former-mayor Bloomberg and others is having the opposite effect on the majority of Americans.
By a margin of 52 percent to 46 percent, Americans say protecting the rights of gun owners is more important than gun control, according to a survey by the Pew Research Center released Wednesday. It is the first time Pew found more support for gun ownership than gun control in more than two decades of surveys on the issue.
I think the world is seems more dangerous (it really isn't though) than ever with riots, ISIS, ebola, police shootings etc putting Americans on edge. The best way to feel like you are protecting yourself and your family is to arm thyself in case something bad happens. This part was very interesting:
Among African-Americans, Pew found a dramatic shift in opinion. A majority of blacks, 54 percent, now say gun ownership does more to protect people than to endanger personal safety. Two years ago, only 29 percent of black Americans held that view.
I mean a young black male now has to worry that a cop can strait-up choke you to death on camera and is found innocent by a grand jury. The system now seems to be stacked against many people so concealed carry might be one way of making a law-abiding black male feel safe. The idea that only the criminals and the cops are armed no longer works anymore.  

Who is Afraid of Ted Cruz?: No One it Seems

At last the GOP is ignoring Ted Cruz and his stupidity.

But something extraordinary happened in response to Cruz’s hyperventilation: absolutely nothing. The House went ahead with its show vote last week, and all indications are that a bill funding Obama’s immigration policy will sail through the House with bipartisan support on Thursday and then face similarly smooth Senate passage. House Speaker John Boehner boasted on Wednesday that he was “proud” that the House acted “without a threat of a government shutdown.”
He threw his bombs and the GOP leadership shrugged their shoulders. That is how it should be after the GOP establishment has righted the ship and has power like they haven't had in decades. In fact his Presidential run will fizzle because Hillary would smash his face. Hopefully, Ted Cruz will shrink away and be some million dollar a year lawyer/lobbyist and we don't have to hear about him any more.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Movie Review: Interstellar: Watch it on Netflix

I saw this movie a few weeks ago and was kind of disappointed. Matthew McConaughey chewed scenery like a champ and shows that he is one of the better actors of his generation. But as a Sci-fi movie it fell flat as far as I am concerned.

First of all, the movie was very long but it did not drag like some recent movies have. It was paced well with scenes of action and drama served up at a pretty decent rhythm. It did not drag on and on forever like Amazing Spider-man 2 did and my attention span did not waver as much as it could have.

The acting was pretty top-notch for the most part. McConaughey did his usual great work and Anne Hathaway did a pretty good job and was somewhat believable as s scientist and astronaut. Jessica Chastain had a few moments of pathos but seemed underutilized a bit. The rest of the cast did not detract from the drama and did not phone it in at all.

What I did have problems with was the science of the Sci-fi. They did a few very interesting things like had them go close to a black hole which warps time. So they had a great scene were McConaughey and Hathaway escape death on this water planet and return to the mother-ship and 30 years had past while they only spent like a few hours on the planet. So the guy on the ship pretty much was alone for 30 years waiting for them to come back. I had the fill in the blanks here but I imagined how lonely it would have been waiting day-after-day and not known if they were alive or dead on the planet. That part was pretty well done and I enjoyed it being in the film.

However, all of the other plot holes could fill a pretty sizable tome so I'll just touch on a few. First, if there is a blight that is killing all vegetables on the planet so instead of figuring out new ways of feeding people (lab grown beef and pork, special nutrient rich gel, etc.) they make farmers the most important job on earth and downplay science. In fact science is so bad people think the moon landing was faked so that the US can beat the Soviets in the Space Race. Of course farmers still use the exact same techniques they have always used with no technology upgrades at all. You would figure the entire world would do everything they could to either stop the blight or figure out alternative food sources but they don't. Instead they just send a bunch of secret astronauts to look for a planet to colonize.

For some reason they send only a handful of astronauts out there for some reason. You would figure they would send out a team to each of the viable planets and have that embryo bomb on each of the probes. That way you have redundancy and increase the chances of saving the human race. Instead they place everything on only 7 people and a handful of weird robots and hope for the best. You would figure that the entire world economy would revolve around next gen foodstuffs that do not have to be grown in the ground and spaceships for colonization and saving the human race. Instead we have farmers with 20th century tech (but drones with fusion power) and a rogue NASA program trying to save humanity. That part was hard to fathom for me.

Finally all the black hole stuff made me have to turn off my brain after a while. The part with the water planet with the black hole's effects was cool even though it would probably be torn apart by gravitational forces or destroyed by those jets that black holes sometimes vent. Everything else about sling-shotting the black hole and falling into it and such made me have to just say "watch the movie and don't think about it." I had to actively suspend my disbelief and hold it through the entire last act of the movie. It was written in a way that you have to not know anything about astronomy and black holes so you can enjoy the action. In any case the movie was a fun romp and McConaughey chewing scenery and interacting with his family was worth watching because I am a big fan of his. The Sc-fi parts needs a very healthy dose of belief-suspension in order to take without going "wait their ship would be destroyed in tenths of a second" if they got close enough to that black hole. 

Movie Review: Horrible Bosses 2: Go See It

I saw this movie last week and I enjoyed it as much as the first one. It had the same ad-libbed feel of the first one where Bateman, Sudeikis, and Day all play off of one another with great chemistry. Bateman plays the strait-man but he has quite a bit more funny lines and situations in this one. We also have Chris Pine added to the cast and he has some pretty decent comedy timing.

The plot of this one is that the three main characters "bet on themselves" and start their own company making Bathroom Buddies which is a weird shower attachment thing. There is a great set-piece of Sudeikis and Day doing a silhouetted BJ scene in a simulated shower on a Live with Kelly and Strahan-type a morning show. That part brought the house down and had me chuckling even after the movie was over.

The rest of the plot is pretty much about the three main characters trying to commit crimes and screwing up over and over. You pull for them like you do in the first movie because they actually have pretty good hearts. Jamie Foxx has an expanded role in this one as Motherfucker Jones and showed good timing and was funny throughout. Jennifer Aniston again played the insane sex-maniac from the first one and has some great scenes with all three in a hotel room that was fun as well.

All in all it was as good as the first one and left my sides hurting after the movie was over. The chemistry between the actors was pitch-perfect and I would not mind coming back for a 3rd helping. In some ways this franchise was better than the Hangover because the characters seem much more likeable and earnest than the characters in that franchise. They really seem like regular guys who are in way over their head trying to commit crimes that they really should not be committing. Also stay tuned at the end for a pretty funny gag-reel that I hope caries over to a Horrible Bosses 3.

GOP Countered the "War on Women" with All-Female Consulting Firm called Burning Glass Consulting

It seems that Romney and his "Binders full of women" has morphed into a force for the GOP to close the gender gap.

As a party, Burning Glass told Republicans, they needed to recruit better candidates, shut down GOP voices that made comments that would be offensive to women voters, and prepare campaigns for the Democrats to replay their “war on women” message in 2014 on a national scale.

“One of the first things that we felt was important was avoiding another Todd Akin or Richard Murdock moment, which was so difficult to deal with in 2012,” Gage said. “The whole candidate-recruitment process, making sure that one candidate was not going to put our whole party in a negative light, was something we felt strongly about.”
If the GOP can only lose women by 4 points like they did in this past election cycle I think they might have a decent chance of winning the Presidency. I just don't see that many Blacks and Hispanics rushing out to vote for Hillary like they did for Obama. All the GOP needs to do is field a decent candidate (easier said than done) and they have good chance. 

Monday, December 08, 2014

Korean Air Flight Diverted Due to Nuts

This has to be a prime example of corporate over-reach if I have ever seen one.

According to AFP, the nutroversy occurred as the plane was taxiing toward the runaway. The VP, Cho Hyun Ah (who also goes by Heather Cho), reportedly got upset because she was served pre-flight macadamia nuts without being asked. Then she really got upset when the nuts were served in a packet instead of a bowl. Cho blamed the chief flight attendant for the grave lapse in nut-serving procedure and had the person booted off the plane.
So they turned the plane around and had it land so she could throw the chief flight attendant off of the plane. That means 250 people were delayed so that the nuts on Korean Air were served correctly. If I were on that flight I would have gone crazy. Hell, I would have opened the stupid packets myself and put them in the bowl so I did not have to go back to the terminal. In any case Cho Hyun Ah is the CEOs daughter so she won't be fired or disciplined at all. I guess people will fly JAL to Korea now so they don't have any nut-related delays going forward.

Friday, December 05, 2014

Political Payback: Obama Threatens Veto Before a Tax Cut Bill Could Even be Written to Embarass Reid

Well, it seems that Obama really doesn't like Harry Reid very much.

Reid had been negotiating with Republicans — and was close to reaching agreement with them — to keep the tax breaks in place at least in the near term. The White House’s unusual move, announcing the threat of a veto before legislation had even been introduced,  appeared to many observers to be retribution for the brazen defiance of Reid’s chief of staff, David Krone, who openly criticized the administration after the Democratic Party’s crushing losses in the midterm elections.
So this is just the White House lashing out at Reid for stating the obvious. I'm sure it is not just the GOP that cannot wait until 2016.

Tuesday, December 02, 2014

GOP Looking to Punt until Next Year on Challenging Obama on Immigration: Thank God!

It looks like the grown-ups are finally running the GOP for a change.

"This is a serious breach of our Constitution. It's a serious threat to our system of government," Speaker John Boehner told reporters after the conference-wide meeting in the Capitol, referring to Obama's decision to circumvent Congress and shield as many as five million undocumented immigrants from deportation. Then he added a key acknowledgment: "Frankly, we have limited options and limited abilities to deal with it directly."
Yeah pretty much. Shutting down the government and then it happens anyway was tried and failed on Obamacare last year. Doing it again on immigration would be the very definition of crazy. Doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different outcome.

Also one of the problems is that there really isn't anything the Congress can do other than sit down and write their own bipartisan immigration reform bill and have Obama sign it or veto it. If enough Democrats can get peeled off the Senate might even overturn the veto. In any case sometimes punting is the best play.

Monday, December 01, 2014

A Good Way to Strengthen the Middle Class: Raise the Overtime Threshold

This idea will seriously close that income inequality gap and will probably help the economy quite well.

So let me be specific. To get the country back to the same equitable standards we had in 1975, the Department of Labor would simply have to raise the overtime threshold to $69,000. In other words, if you earn $69,000 or less, the law would require that you be paid overtime when you worked more than 40 hours a week. That’s 10.4 million middle-class Americans with more money in their pockets or more time to spend with friends and family. And if corporate America didn’t want to pay you time and a half, it would need to hire hundreds of thousands of additional workers to pick up the slack—slashing the unemployment rate and forcing up wages.

Unpaid overtime is rampant in corporate America from what I hear. It might make people happier to have the corporate culture change to one of looking out for your employees. If a company wants to make more money they have to hire more people instead of making the people there do more for no pay. Maybe the idea of compassionate capitalism needs to take root.

Social Media Strikes Again: GOP Staffer Resigns After Cyber-Bullying the Obama kids

She was an idiot for attacking the behavior of teenaged girls in the first place.

Elizabeth Lauten, the communications director for Rep. Stephen Fincher (R-Tenn.), resigned Monday following a Facebook post that criticized Malia and Sasha Obama's appearance at the annual White House turkey pardon ceremony, according to NBC News. 

According to screenshots posted by Gawker on Saturday, Lauten wrote to the first daughters, asking them to "try showing a little class"
My advice is to stop looking at the Obama kids skirt length and noting how many times they roll their eyes and cut my taxes already. I don't care about Mitt Romneys taxes you can cut them or leave them the same. I just want the GOP to stop with the social conservatism and get with the fiscal conservatism.