Saturday, April 18, 2020

Shareholder Value

Keeping in mind what is really important...

(The S&P 500 is up over 20% over the last month. Buy! Buy! Buy! You don't want to be left out!)

Sunday, April 12, 2020

Easter 2020

Happy Easter to everyone!!

Life in Lock-Down

Florida joined up with most of the other states and declared a formal lock-down. We can still do take-out and drive thru for food; grocery stores are open, but good luck scoring toilet paper; most churches are shut down, although a few are defying the 10-or-fewer people rule and having regular services. We were already pretty much shut in and had even told my parents that they could not go to church, so not much changed for us.

One problem we had is that my parents eat out frequently, so instead, we started preparing meals and taking them over to their place. It's still eating out - as in eating out on the porch; for now, we are keeping them happy. Dad still has to have a Burger King every week or so, but we're working on weaning him off of that.

We've also been canceling "unnecessary" doctor visits, which raises the question: If they were unnecessary, why were they ever made in the first place? I had my first video doctor visit the other day; it seemed... well... unnecessary. Nothing was said or done that could not have been handled with a simple phone call or even an e-mail. The video quality was so poor on either end, I could never had shown him anything. But I'm sure some tech consulting firm made a mint setting it all up and that is all that really matters, right? After all, those legions of burger flippers put out of their jobs by automation are going to become tech experts after watching a dozen or so TED Talks, and they need jobs!

We are still trying to figure out when exactly we are leaving for Michigan. Medical stuff keeps jumping into our path, so by the time we get everything set, something else pops up. As of right now, there is nothing stopping us from leaving when we originally planned as long as the states don't try to close their borders. We keep hearing rumors of cops pulling people over at random and demanding ID's and proof that it's "necessary" for them to be on the road. If true, then we are taking a bigger hit to our constitutional rights (freedom of travel, freedom of association, freedom of assembly) than we took after 9/11.

And speaking of politicians over-stepping their authority, we have this little gem:

“If you’re not buying food, medicine, or other essential items, you should not be going to the store,” [Governor Gretchen Whitmer] said. Big-box retailers such as Walmart were ordered to shutter entire sections of their stores – such as furniture, carpeting, plant nurseries, paint, and garden centers – beginning on April 10.

The state’s strict lockdown measures mean residents will be stuck at home for the start of spring, but those who were hoping to plant a vegetable garden to help pass the time – or get some fresh air – are fresh out of luck.


Amanda Carpenter, a CNN contributor with more than 140,000 Twitter followers, wrote that her friends in Michigan are “irate” over the fact that they “can’t get farm supplies but booze and lottery tickets are available.”

Good to see my home state has their priorities straight, even in a pandemic: neoliberal exploitation in the form of liquor and lottery ticket sales are "essential", but seeds and plants that allow citizens some infinitesimal  bit of freedom from Corporate Food (tm)? NOT ALLOWED!

Whata bunch of bozos. I hope Michigan residents remember this at the next election.

If we have elections....