Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Just Some Advice

Once in a while, the Washington Post will have an interesting story.  On today's cover...there's a guy in Florida who had been in search of new employment, and got all of this fantastic training "green" certificates.  He'd gone to the local community college and gotten into the big stimulus grant business....and learned a number "green" skills.  He even learned how to dismantle a house rather than demolish it.

So now, it's come time to get a job.  And he can't get on with any company or organization.

This "green" job business is an interesting piece of the White House's agenda over the past two years.  It's brought up and discussed in public forums.  It's tossed around as a bright spot in America's future.  It's probably one of the top ten things that often repeated by the President in speeches.

This guy....Laurance Anton....has gambled a good bit of his time, and the US government has tossed money onto this bet, that "green" jobs would appear.  Maybe in five years....maybe in ten years....it might happen.  But it's not happening now.

Are there any "green" jobs at all?  I'm guessing there are a couple hundred in California...especially around San Fransisco.  There might be hundreds in New York City.  In the whole state of Florida?  I'd bet on a hundred max.  And in Bama?  Maybe less than five.

It's a curious part of our political landscape.  It consumes speeches....yet has no real fulfilling nature.  There are probably a hundred political organizations in the US that has this theme running as part of their message.  They all have one or two examples of how things will be in the future.  But to be honest, if you ever challenged these folks....I suspect most would admit that "green" jobs are a decade away.  So when Johnny Junior asks you about career advice.....a Pepsi-driver or short-order cook at Catfish Basket still might rank ahead of "green" jobs...if you want to offer some advice.

The Fake in Afghanistan

It would make a great plot for a Eddie Murphy movie.

A bunch of western dimwits want a peace treaty between Taliban and Afghan leaders.  They want participation by all groups.  They put out the word.  Groups show up.  One of the most significant Taliban groups doesn't really want to show up but suddenly the insurgent leader (Mullah Akhtar Muhammad Mansour) of this group shows up.  He is considered one of the top dogs in the Taliban movement across Afghanistan.

To be kind of honest....no one much at the table has ever met Mansour.

Everything is moving along at a fair pace and this Mansour fellow is singing praise of different things....and then arguing over some others.

Somewhere along the way....to keep Mansour at the table and talking really positive....the US and European buddies toss over some cash.  They won't admit how much....but I'd be guessing at least a quarter million (remember, this is a honest guess).

Well....the meeting went on for a pretty long period....talking, and talking, and talking, and talking.  Then, things kinda folded up at some point in a hurry....when everyone realized this Mansour guy....was a impostor.  All the players have gotten up from the table and just walked away because it was all a joke.  And this Mansour guy, the fake one, has come to disappear.

So thousands of hours were wasted, as various factions were trying to work out some deal for everyone to have a piece of Afghanistan.

Where'd the fake Mansour come from?  No one knows.  Where'd he go?  No one knows.  Did he get way more than a quarter million?  In my imagination, I can see a bunch of state department guys giving him a bag of money....maybe three million....just to stand around and smile.  

If I was the fake Mansour....I'd probably find a donkey and just ride my way out of Afghanistan....over to a airport in Pakistan, and fly off to some Pacific island retreat, and just sip whiskey sours by the beach all day.  And I'd probably gaze over at the personally autographed picture of President Obama that I asked for as part of the deal.....and wonder if this whole thing in Afghanistan was just a joke to start with.

Something to ponder.  It'd make a great movie, and I'd have to cast Eddie Murphy as the character.

Just a Reminder

I sat and watched the TSA "accept-it" video clip today.  It's a curious thing.  They wanted to bring up the shoe bomber and the underwear bomber.

I sat and pondered over this.  Both the shoe bomber and the underwear bomber got on their planes overseas....where the rules are kinda different and there are no full-body scanners or heavy frisk requirements.

Yes, all this hassle....done by your friendly TSA....over episodes that neither the body scanner or frisking would have been involved.

To this day....no one has gotten on board a flight within the borders of the US to cause a problem.

Oh, and when the TSA folks brag about all the "weapons" they've confiscated....ask them how many of these were toe-nail trimmers?  They'd rather not brag about that, but they confiscated hundreds....if not thousands....of these dangerous "weapons".

It's kinda like speed-traps in your local town....run by wannabe cops....and being told this is for your safety....then you pay the $55 fine for 9 miles over the speed limit.