Thursday, 2 June 2011

Dressing Up a Bit

A number of years ago....I worked for a company that was a Fortune-500 company.  They had this headquarters out in San Diego at the time.  They had a high executive within the budget department who went off for about a month and then reappeared one morning.....he was decked out in a full skirt, blouse, heels, etc.  Somewhere in the midst of the month gone....he had this operation done, and added ladies features.....which it would be best not to go much further into detail about this part.

It took around twenty minutes for the arrival of this guy to reach the "Doc" who was the CEO of the company.  It took him three minutes to confirm the event, and then he ordered security to escort the guy out of the building.  Whatever it was going to take to fire him.....it was automatically accepted as part of the CEO's policy.  I was told that well over $750k was offered to the guy as a settlement.  The CEO was flat-out not going to accept a cross-dresser or a transsexual in the company headquarters.

Today, in California state news....there's a bill going around the legislature that would allow a cross-dresser or transsexual to dress like they want....and the business can't do a thing about it.

Will it pass?  It's hard to say.  Amongst all the financial and employment problems that California has today....it's odd that this is one of their top priorities.  You'd think they'd put more effort into tax revenue or finance reform, or cutting costs within the state.  But they worry about about stuff like this.

The curious thing?  A guy could come up and just decide that he was going to wear women's heels with his business suit....and trip out all of the other guys.  He'd walk into the break-room....strut around the candy machine....click his heels a bit as he looked at the sodas, and start a bit of break-room talk.  Women would ask where he bought his heels just to get a reaction.  Guys would ask if they hurt any.  Eventually....a month later....another guy would show up like this.  Then over the next year....dozens of guys would start wearing women's heels....acting like it was normal.

Frankly, life is awful damn short....and if this is the best excitement you can dig up.....you got issues.

The Underground Issue

We have a brewing battle here locally in Virginia with the Dulles airport.  It's the "other" airport in the DC region.  Basically....Reagan International is a small airport where most folks get out of town on Friday.  Dulles?  It's the airport where international flights land and about twenty-five miles outside of town.  For years and years....the Dulles folks have wanted the METRO line (our subway) to extend out to Dulles.  Agreement has finally been reached and the DC METRO will reach Dulles within six years.  However, there is this argument about the final point.

Dulles folks want the subway to end in a tunnel next to the airport....like some international airports do (London, Paris, etc).  The METRO planning folks and most Virginia folks want the METRO to end in a above ground station adjacent to the airport.  The difference?  $300 million extra if they dig the tunnel station.  And folks aren't sure it ends at $300 million (it could $450 million for all practical purposes).

The state governor has gotten into the mess and said he wants it above ground to save money.  Most folks around the region agree with that sentiment....why waste the $300 million?  The airport crowd and the committee that manages METRO....all stick to the tunnel idea.

I sat and pondered over this issue.  It's a silly problem if you ask me.  You add on almost an entire year....if you have to dig this huge bunker-like station beneath the airport.

So I've come to this idea....since it's all important to give folks arriving this feeling of London or Paris....that you've got to be underground, then lets give the feeling.  You built the above-ground arrival point.....then lay in this tunnel that folks can walk thirty foot beneath the surface, and then arrive inside the airport.  Yep, a fake walking tunnel.....likely built for less than $10 million.  You can even pump in swamp-gas like scents to give folks that tunnel feeling.  Maybe toss in a dead rat or two on the ground to add more tunnel feelings.

I'm guessing my suggestion won't go far because I'm trying to spend the $300 million.

The Greatest Music Video

If you have nine minutes....you might want to watch the greatest music video of all time. The curious thing....they did this with one take....and no splicing. Pretty amazing if you ask me. And I'd go to Grand Rapids in a heartbeat after watching this.

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Simply Observations

Lance Armstrong....our boy wonder of cycling....finally got angry enough at 60 Minutes and their episode accusing him of doping up for the French bike races of a decade ago....that he told them to apologize.  So far, they won't do it.  The curious thing.....there isn't one absolute piece of evidence to show in this case.  The 60 Minutes crowd simply has various folks that say they were there, and make the accusation.  Over the past three or four years....I've come to view the new management of 60 Minutes as mostly a group of comical guys who don't measure up to the old crew.  For a while, they even had Katie Couric on the staff....which gives one a laugh over the intended desires of the 60 Minutes leadership.  My prospective?  Lance will take them eventually down to the mat. If there was a simple blood test sitting out there....that might settle it....but there isn't.  You've got a bunch of wannabe 60 Minutes folks who just don't measure up.

MSNBC's Martin Bashir.....a guy who mostly talks and talks.....giving you little substance for the hour of power that he broadcasts for MSNBC....finally stood up today and said that Sarah Palin's use of the American flag on her bus tour...is illegal.   For the few folks that watch Martin.....they probably got all pepped up.  The sad thing.....the other 99k instances of illegal use of the American flag.....were never noted by Martin.

The DC emergency services crowd came out and admitted that roughly one third of all their ambulances are sitting parked.  The AC units for the back of the vehicle.....are mostly all broke or non-functional.  The maintenance guys spoke up about this months ago.....and the city simply didn't have the budget to handle the problem.  So now....as emergencies pour in.....there's thirty percent less ambulances out there to handle the cases.  I sat and pondered over this.  Back thirty years ago....most all ambulances that came to get you....in all of America....didn't have any real AC in the back anyway.  Apparently, we've taken the attitude that AC is pretty much a mandatory thing, and we aren't even willing to open up a window for folks to get fresh air instead.

Finally, there is an article today that indicates the President will be using the Detroit car industry....with it's rescue....as a major theme of his re-election campaign.  So you can imagine these ad's coming on....some rough voice in the background.....talking up how the government came to Detroit....saving Chrysler and General Motors....and you ought to vote with the President because of this.  If you ponder this long enough....you start to ask how General Motors and Chrysler ever got into such a deep mess in the first place....and the President would prefer you not think that deeply.  Then you'd ask why Ford didn't screw up and take your money.....again, it's best we not think about that.  Then finally, you'd ask....would you even buy a General Motors or Chrysler car today?  The sad answer is probably no.  If you ask me...some idiot on the President's staff sat and watched too many Chrysler Detroit commercials

The Money Trail

It's an interesting prospective.  Senator Tom Coburn (Republican of course), went out and asked Congressional Research Service to do an analysis.  How many federal employees in each state...made more than their governor?

All total?  77k federal emloyees make more....than the governor in their state.  This included twenty-two librarians and even one interior designer....all employed by the federal government.

Now, before we rush out to really get excited....we really need to analyze the facts here....because Tom isn't going really get us square on the facts.

In Colorado....the governor (Bill Ritter)....makes $90k a year as governor.  The state made that decision....not Bill, or the federal government.....or even Senator Tom Coburn.   There are over 10k federal employees in Colorado who make more than the governor.  Where do most work?  Well....not to get excited here....but in Denver, Colorado Springs and Pueblo mostly.

In Maryland....the state governor makes $150k (Democratic Governor Martin O'Malley).  He's surrounded by over 7k federal employees in his state....who make more than him.

What Senator Tom wants to get up hyped up about....is that government employees are overpaid.  He might have a point....but then you ask yourself....who exactly approved this increase each year?  A majority of Senators and Representatives....along with the President.  This has been going on for the past fifty years.

What's Senator Tom want to do now?  Mostly freeze up federal pay for a number of years.  He won't say publicly, but one can imagine that we are talking about a freeze of five years likely being his agenda.

What does the governor's pay have to do with this whole thing?  Well....nothing.  That's the curious thing.  Tom wanted to use some measuring stick and this was the best he could arrange.

One would start to ponder now....how does a New York Yankee really deserve $12.5 million a year?  How does a Wall Street banker deserve $40 million a year?  How does the chief nurse of San Fransisco health services deserve $400k a year?  How does the chief of police of a 100k resident town in California earn $240k a year?  No one can really answer this....even Senator Tom.

How does a Senator go and ride on a fancy Air Force jet to Paris or spend six nights in France discussing trade relations....free of charge?

Yep, we've got problems....and Senator Tom has barely scratched the surface.  And the sad thing is.....he's getting cases and cases of free bottled water....because no one in the Senate will drink DC tap water.  Only in America.