Thursday, 23 September 2010

The Car Issue

This is the image of a Chrysler crew on break at a plant up in Detroit. What you don't see....but the photographer did see...would be the group of guys smoking a joint as well.

Ever wondered why certain things on new cars you buy are totally screwed up and the dealer is pulling his hair out because his guys can't figure why something doesn't work right?

The fascinating thing is that these guys all think they have a right to the job and start jumping up to go nuts when a car-maker suggests that he's leaving the state.

The same guys would go nuts if Chrysler or GM started talking about a random drug test and possibly firing any guy that they determined was drinking on the job.

The last Chrysler I bought was from the 1986 period. Over the first year, I noticed five things in the interior that were screwed up in terms of the fit. I accepted these things. The last GM I owned was a Dakota pick-up from the 1995 period. I noted around twelve things that were odd with it after a year.

Around six years ago, I got into European cars. Frankly, they don't let a substandard car leave the factory. They don't allow drinking at a German car plant. Nor would you be staying long if they suspected you had drug issues. There's a difference in terms of quality.

My advice here....if you were thinking of a new car....and you look at this picture.....then I'd cross off Chrysler. And I'd think long and hard about leaving GM on the list of potential dealers.

State Affairs

I am a Virgina citizen. To be honest, I just don't get that feel for being a Virginian. Deep in my heart, I've still got Bama somewhere.

This week, I was sitting there and suddenly came across the Virigina state seal. I'm not even sure that Bama has a seal. If Bama did have one....I'm pretty sure that 94 percent of the folks wouldn't know it or even care. If you asked half the folks in Bama what might be on the seal....it'd either be Coach Paul "Bear" Bryant (our former Bama football coach), a NASCAR race, or a catfish. This is kinda sad to admit.

But turning back to Virginia.....I gazed at this seal. It's two guys in togas, with one apparently having whooped up on the other, with a fairly large stick. There's a crown involved, so we know the whooped guy had some royalty involved.

There's probably a story involved.....Larry got tired of Marvin's rules. Larry and Marvin got into a fight. Larry was a backwoods kinda guy who didn't wear shoes because they hurt his feet. Marvin liked to walk around in a purple toga and look macho. And then one day, Larry had enough of this mess and gave Marvin a good whooping.

Somehow, a couple of drunk Virginia guys probably got all peppy about this legend, and convinced everyone their seal needed to have something besides a NCAA football legend or NASCAR. So it was done.

How Things Go Off-Track

“Get out there and spread the word."

-- President Obama to Health and Human Services Center for Faith-Based and Community Partnerships

It's an odd situation. With public support for the health care package declining, the President is now going to religious forums and trying to pump them up and get support via their network.

I sat and pondered over this. Across the US...it's around sixty percent of the nation now (based on various polls) that have issues with the universal health care law. You can toss another ten percent who just question the financial side and don't believe it can ever take off.

So the strategy cooked up now to get people convinced and lessen this sixty percent number....is via religious persuasion? The comical thing is that the automatic reaction by some pro-health care minister is use Genesis 4:9 and the 'brother's keeper' words.

You can imagine a number of these Tea movement folks sitting there in church, when this comes up. About three minutes into the minister's pro-health care package sermon....someone gets up and takes their wife's hand...and then walks out of the church. Sixty seconds later...a second couple with kids up and walks out. Another sixty seconds pass and three families up and walk out the back door.

By the end of the sermon, while you started with 250 folks there....now you've got 180 folks left.

By that evening, the seven deacons have had phone calls over the minister. Thirty folks have called and demanded he be fired. Now the deacons are left to wonder over their enthusiasm with the heath care package. Two of the guys might be willing to just laugh this off. A couple of the guys might be worried. They decide to do nothing.

The next Sunday arrives. There's around 150 folks in the audience. Donations are a bit less. The deacons worry about this but stand firm.

A month passes. The audience stands firm at 150 and the deacons now admit they've lost a hundred members. They send their most respected member out to the families who quit. After a week, he reports back that they would all return if they fire the minister.

Now the boys sit there and contemplate this. They eventually decide it's acceptable. They call the minister up and relay the decision. The minister responds that they ought to look at the contract. They then realize that they have to pay him an entire year's salary if he's fired before such and such date. They fire him anyway, and then spend most of the next twelve months with a happy congregation but heavily in debt because of their stupid minister that they fired.

As for the minister who got fired? Well...it's a bit more difficult now to find work, and he ends up as some unemployed guy seeking a church that fits his political frame of thought.

A year from now, the President announces that there's a serious number of ministers throughout America unemployed, and his team is working on a new stimulus package to help these guys (kinda like the 'shovel-ready' program, but called the 'pulpit-ready' program). You will sit there on the back porch....Pabst beer in your hand....wondering how this stupid mess started in the first place.