Friday, 6 May 2011

The SUV Kingdom

Over the past couple of weeks....things over in a neighboring county.... Montgomery county, Maryland....have been kinda up and down.  Some folks have awoken and realized that the county now finances 297 vehicles for its county employees.  Yes, almost three hundred vehicles.  It's around 6.75 million dollars involved in this episode.

Since the story came out....the county council has said that it will review the case and redefine their policy.  Course, each and every member of the county council has a county-provided SUV.

The excuses given?  They all say they do county business after-hours....and most want the SUV because they might be out in snow....doing county business.

I sat there and tried to imagine three hundred folks working for a county, and how they were so necessary to have their own drive-home vehicles.  If you tried to attempt this as a franchise or company....you'd have to report it to IRS as a benefit but since it's government-provided.....the guys and gals don't report nothing.  And when the vehicle wears out.....they just get another.

My suggestion is that the county ought to suggest a plain Subaru Forester, with no options added, as the vehicle of choice for every single county employee.  And they should all be the same color.....dark green.  It ought to have a county decal on the side as well and be very-well marked.  My guess is that if you went with the Forester.....green in color.....that suddenly no one would want a take-home vehicle, and this whole cost issue would evaporate overnight.  Then you could spend the $6 million on road repair, which would make everyone a little bit happier.

Course.....I'm never the guy you'd want to ask to analyze a problem.

Musaf, the Flipino, and the Dead Dude (Parody)

There in the heart of Pakistan....a decade ago....there on the street corner of a village without much of a name to remember....was this shop belonging to Musaf.

Musaf had prided himself to be the guy who could forecast a million-dollar windfall.  To be honest....he'd had three or four great moments in his life as a merchant in Pakistan.  At the right time and right place....he could actually turn a $10k investment into a $50k profit.

When the merchants met every Tuesday....each would brag about their magnificent profits.  The problem with Musaf.....was that he only turned one big deal once every three or four years.  The other guys would always brag about a $500 investment and turning it into $1000.

In some ways, the other merchants feared Musaf.  He could pick the right deal and suddenly make every merchant within five hundred miles weep.

So this week....with the bin Laden killing in Pakistan.....Musaf's one-in-a-lifetime trend caught fire again.  There....back in 2003....he'd gone out and bought 50k American flags cheaply at $2 each from some Philippine guy named Eduardo.

For some odd reason, Musaf could see this day coming....when the evil infidels would eventually get to bin Laden and every Islamic fundamentalist had to burn an American flag that day in front of his friends and co-workers.  There he'd be.....the only guy with the big supply....charging $10 each.

As the hours passed, Musaf sold, and sold, and sold.  When darkness finally came....he'd sold every single flag and then he met up with his fellow merchants.....for bragging rights of the century.

There's not alot you can say wrong about Musaf....because he has that one thing that most Americans actually value....the fundamental view of capitalism.....everything relates to a sale and profit.  We might not be happy about burning flags....but the honest truth....if you ever were looking for the true capitalist....Musaf is that guy.  And the truth is....the only sad thing was that they were inferior flags to start with, from that Flipino guy named Eduardo who couldn't sell in the US for $12 each to Wal-Mart.

So is the story, the fortunes, and the woes of Musah, Eduardo, and the bin Laden dude.

The Last Folks You'd Want

I rarely blog on Germany....but an interesting topic came out this week and is worth discussing.

A couple of years ago....Germany got approached by Scientology and the boys wanted to be recognized as a legit religion.  In Germany.....you can't just invent a religion out of thin air and then claim tax-free status.  The Germans asked a bunch of questions and the more that things got put on the table (meaning lack of information)....they were a bit skeptical and refused to approve tax-free status.

So months and years passed, and eventually....the Scientology crowd found enough high-government support by whatever means they could.....and got "blessed".

So the front door of Germany was open to recruit and they figured this would be a pretty simple task.

Days, weeks and months have passed.  This week....it's come out that recruitment isn't going well.  In fact, they've found that Scientology has been using Facebook and other German society medias to get friendly with folks.  So far....with 4,500 folks.....things haven't really gone well.  The government is discussing some more monitoring, and some political folks are trying their best to defend the Scientology line of thinking.

What went wrong?  Well....it's a curious thing. Not to insult you Germans...but you guys are stingy folks. The idea that a church would require a fairly sizable donation.....to get in the front door....and every single week? Oh my.....a German would ask why and the minute you start talking about some meter changing your life....you've got an automatic German skeptic.

So add up the numbers....twenty million Germans are on Hartz IV welfare or falling into the lower class of income where Scientology doesn't want to bother with them at all. Then you have the working class folks who make up the next thirty-odd million, and frankly....they don't have mental or social problems....they just go to Ibiza each year....drank for fourteen days straight, and then feel 100 percent better. Toss in the ten million Muslims, Russians, or foreigners....who would just laugh in the face of a Scientology recruiter, and you've got barely twenty million potential rich folks to recruit who might have money to fit the profile.

So you look for character flaws and weakness in a German guy. You want to find German women who question themselves and are seeking a massive change in their life. You seek German people who need coaching to achieve their goals and change their lives. You need Germans who fill unfilled and can jump-start themselves into a mighty and dramatic change. So out of twenty million....the best you can hope for is 25,000 Germans nation-wide. 25k folks who have money, no ambitions, loser attitude, need focus, and would be stupid enough to part with $5k for a weekend seminar on how to control bowel movements; to be a winner. Then you convince them to return the next month for another $5k seminar at another luxury hotel.

Just some advice for Scientology trolls....if you had to pick three European countries to just skip....I'd rank Germany, Switzerland, and Denmark as worthless for your ambitions. I might skip France too because they'd ask too many questions, and way too many Muslims to deal with. The best group....maybe the British? They've got the money and naive nature to buy into religion costing money.