Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Plans They Are A-Changin'

With humble apologies to Bob Dylan. We are keeping an eye on the weather and it isn't looking good for us to be able to do Debbie's niece's graduation. It is planned to be outside, but will be moved inside with a limit of three guests per graduate if there is lightning. Somehow we don't think that with three grandparents, two parents and a sibling we have much of a chance at scoring an indoor seat. If the outlook doesn't change in the next 24 hours, we most likely will not be driving down on Wednesday and spending the night; we'll just day-trip down Thursday to pick up Debbie's mom. Everything looks good for the weekend with something more like summer making a reappearance.

We've been doing some thinking about The Move of 2010 trying to plan things out a bit better than we did with The Move of 2009 that landed us in New Hampshire. Unless something drastic happens, the move will be sooner rather than later: most likely late August or early September. I need to drag out the lease and see how bad we are going to get killed for leaving ahead of the end of the contract. But we are both at the point now that we just don't care and want to get out of this place. I may go scouting by myself at the end of June or first part of July, or we will both go down after our time in Michigan in August. Either way, we're outta here sometime around Labor Day. Unless something drastic happens. Like, we change our minds. Again.

One of the gifts of the internet is the ability to watch politicians implode their careers. All politicians are, by definition, moral defectives. But imagine the roles reversed: Mr. College Student would have been cooling his heels in a cell in a matter of minutes facing a list of felonies a mile long. In contrast, Mr. Moral Defective is holding press conferences to issue a lame apology.

The 48-hour deadline for BP to do something about all that oil has come and gone with about the results you would expect:

The White House is ratcheting up pressure on BP over the Gulf of Mexico oil spill....

In other words, more words and not a damn thing more. And this is rich:

Although BP has pledged to pay clean-up costs and damages, "history has taught us that corporations often fail to live up to their initial promises", the lawmakers wrote. They demanded a response by Friday.

Fortunately, I wasn't taking a drink when I read that or I'd be out a keyboard. Pardon me while I ROTFLMA at politicians bitching because someone else breaks a promise:


OK; I'm back. (giggle, snert). Maybe that statement is true because corporations are taking their moral cues from morally defective lawmakers. And I'll make sure to tune in over the weekend so I can listen to another "deadline" make that funny whoosh-ing sound as it goes flying by with zero real-world consequences. It'll be just like working in IT again!

Speaking of multinational corporations that can ignore governments, Bilderburg 2010 has wrapped up. I remember when the mere mention of the Bilderburg would make everyone in the room check you for a tinfoil hat and start edging for the door. The writer makes some good observations and asks some important questions. I'm not going to cover all of them primarily because I'm lazy, but I'll touch on a couple points:

There's an awful lot of unelected 'advising' in the world...

If you think about it, most any government is largely unelected and runs on its own agenda that takes no account of that nation's electorate. Think of the entire alphabet soup of federal agencies here in the US. How many of those legions of bureaucrats are elected? None. And I would argue that the FDA has a much bigger influence on what I eat than the "world food problem" item on the on the Bilderburg 2010 agenda.

The day that Peter Voser, CEO of Royal Dutch Shell, sits around a table with the express concern of making the world a better, more beautiful place for all of us, is the day that my arse grows teeth and eats my hat.

Allow me to make a minor edit to that sentence:

The day that my pizza delivery guy sits around a table with the express concern of making the world a better, more beautiful place for all of us, is the day that my arse grows teeth and eats my hat.

The difference is that my pizza delivery guy's ability to screw up my life is limited to delivering cold pizza, while the CEO of Royal Dutch Shell can... er... royally screw up not just my life, but the lives of millions of people all over the planet. But both are acting in their own selfish interest; the scale of the impact doesn't make one person more evil than another. The problem is two generations raised to believe that the very concept of a moral compass is contemptible.

And for the record, I'm sure Peter Voser thinks that he is "making the world a better, more beautiful place for all of us." That his definition of "better" and "beautiful" may not align well with mine or yours or the author's is beside the point.

Moving on to people with too much time on their hands and/or cash in their pockets: For a mere $400, you can buy a manual typewriter that outputs to your iPad. A green shoot if I ever saw one.

And with that, I need to get off my butt and make dinner before Debbie gets home.

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