Sunday, March 8, 2009

Shallow weekend thoughts

  • Utah Gov. Huntsman is the Mike Huckabee of 2012 -- a lucid, reasonable, friendly Republican. He even goes Huckabee one step further by toning down the hidden fanaticism...he's endorsing civil union for same-sex couples. Oh, and check this radical proposal that Republicans should contribute ideas of their own, rather than reject the President'
  • I hadn't realized that the Mongolian Embassy in Washington, D.C. had contacted "Mayor Anthony A.Williams about the possibility of erecting of a statue of Chinggis Khaan [Genghis Khan] in Washington D.C in honor of his contribution to the world civilization in 2005. As the Embassy of Mongolia is now working to add its national hero’s name in the list of Monuments in Washington D.C., we would welcome your comments on the idea of erecting the statue of Chinggis Khaan..." While I admire the great contributions and leadership of Chinggis Khaan, I will admit that a statue of a 13th century Asian conqueror would be a surprise to come across in D.C.
  • Ever since Sal DiMasi got cashiered shortly after opposing casino interests, the de facto leader of the Opposition here in the Commonwealth has been Treasurer Tim Cahill. Most of his ideas are not that bright, particularly his keystone concept of warehouse-like slot machine parlors. Megaresorts such as Mohegan Sun put out the ritz to attract the high rollers, the "whales", as well as the middle class looking for spectacle. A warehouse is squarely aimed at gambling addicts who can't afford to play. Not a good idea, no more than the idea that anonymous people around Cahill are rumored by the Globe to be considering an independent bid for governor in 2010, either. All that's nice to have somebody challenging the governor. Heaven knows the Massachusetts Republicans obviously can't do it (called out by the Healey-McCain Herald, no less!) and with DiMasi gone, somebody had to step up. Their eager distortion of that independent bid tidbit, complete with editing out relevant quotes that detract from the persecution complex, is proof enough of blind loyalty. This is a cult of personality that would do Gaius Baltar proud, but cripples our ability to focus on issues rather than slogans.
  • Speaking of which, last week's episode of BSG had too much crying, not enough doing. Next week better be, well, better. The whole series ends in two episodes...and with BSG gone, and Leverage off until June, the television turns off for a while over to March Madness, then the NBA Finals, then...
  • Gaming out costs by day -- whether it's tax rate restoration or gas tax hikes or anything else, is dishonest in my mind. Almost anything sounds cheap if you divide it by 365. It might sound crazy to donate $200 to me every year to keep this blog going, but keep in mind that's less than a donut per day!
  • I'm musing this idea: a basket of 1 stock each from CitiGroup, AIG, Wachovia, and ING would cost $9.27 right now. If I were to purchase some 30 "baskets" right now on the bet that if even one of these companies survives the next 18 months, their stock will restore to a spot where I could sell the whole lot for profit. As the old saying goes, "the time to buy is when there's blood on the streets."
  • We have way too many stores already, as evidenced by the failures of Circuit City, Steve & Barry's, KB Toys, and Linens'n'Things. So which stores do the fine people of West Bridgewater expect to come into the retail center they just voted to approve?
  • Yes, you too can support Roland Burris's 2010 run for Senator! Thus far, the only portions of the website that work are his biography and donation link. Nothing on issues or endorsements.
  • It's astounding how many Obama nominees screwed up their taxes. It's also astounding how "didn't adequately itemize minor items and violated byzantine codicils in the tax code" has become "didn't pay their taxes," as if it were volition and not inadequate counseling.
  • Question here -- every day or so I'm tooling down the highway when we come up to a construction area with a police officer staring down the hole that's been dug, or sitting in the cruiser with the lights on. Everyone slows down to 65. I've never been sure if said officer has the liberty to leave the construction scene which s/he is being paid to observe and chase off after a speeder. And for those times s/he is outside the vehicle, how would even be possible to generate a speed to write on the driver's ticket? Do we even have to worry about this happening?
  • "I'm Yours" by Jason Mraz has to be the most cloying, saccharin, desperate stuffing of pretentious cuteness into 3 minutes 20 seconds of banal lyrics and unnoticeable music that's been released in decades. If this is what he turns out after 7 years releasing albums, he should just quit. Ugh.

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