Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Taxachusetts Redux

Governor Patrick hints at gas tax hike

Governor Deval Patrick signed a budget yesterday that imposes more than $1 billion in additional taxes, and did not rule out a higher gas tax.

This is why people voted for Bill Weld and then kept a Republican in office for a looong time. You can darn well bet that history will repeat itself if the current governor keeps bleeding the people. Not only will Democrats bear the brunt as people turn their backs on the party, but this will impact the state for a very long time. The exodus of talented, smart and nearly broke people will continue because they can't afford to live here.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Taxachusetts, once again.

Today, Massachusetts governor Duval Patrick signed a state budget that cuts local aid and increases the state sales tax from 5% to 6.25%. The budget cuts a ton of government programs but does give about $4 billion for education funding and restores health care for 30,000 legal immigrants.

I'm somewhat at a loss over this. On one hand, yay budget for education. On the other hand, HELLO? This is not a good methodology for increasing consumerism in the commonwealth. Here I am, cash-strapped normal middle class doofus with surprisingly little extra cash to help stimulate the economy. But, I still need to provide for my family, so purchases are not uncommon. However, I can very much say that I will be doing a significantly higher percentage of my business online with nationwide vendors who do not charge sales tax. Not because I don't want to help out my community, but because I cannot friggin afford not to anymore.

You want to get us out of this dilemma? Try DEcreasing the sales tax. This will inspire more consumer activity. Don't believe me? One weekend a year Massachusetts has a "no sales tax" event. Quite obviously, that is a huge deal and tons of revenue is earned by all parties. Now imagine that we drop the sales tax to 4%. Not a huge number, but enough for some jerkoff like me to actually go to a store rather than go online or to New Hampshire. I believe that this would be a common perception and our economy will sustain more of a boost than increasing taxes.

Example: Walmart is a tremendously successful corporation. They garner small profit margins per item because they can rely on volume. Tweeter, Etc, an esoteric electronics chain, did the opposite. Small volume, high margin. Take a look at where both companies stand today.

Friday, June 26, 2009


Another amazingly astute headline from USAToday.com. What gives? This paper was a giant, a notable in the field of journalism. Ok, it was never The Washington Post or The NY Times. But lately they've hoisted themselves to nearly the top of my "absurdists" list.

They aren't quite the NY Post but is that day coming?

Hosed Again

Poor Farrah. First it's cancer. Then, her death is the top story for a blink and then along comes Michael Jackson and his oxygen challenged status. Poor Farrah.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Jon and Kate minus Jon and Kate

You know, normally I would just give this little news item a pass and read it only in order to cure my insomnia. But for some reason, the news of Jon & Kate from "Jon & Kate Plus Eight" separating and filing for divorce really irks me. I cannot help but wonder how their fame and subsequent egos got in the way of something special that they had.

Jon is a henpecked husband. At least, that's what the media says. When my wife was expecting our twin sons, we watched this program together. Jon wasn't henpecked then. Kate was bossy, but she wasn't as overbearing as Victim Jon is making himself out to be today.

Has Kate become more unbearable as the series has gone on? I think so. I think she believes her own hype and that has lead to a self-fulfilling prophecy of the demise of their marriage.

Is this her fault? Is this his fault. They're both to blame. Jon feels emasculated on national television, and there's no coming back from that.

Kate is like an employee who gets promoted to management over fellow employees and turns into an asshole boss. The allure of perceived power without the ego-check to keep yourself ultimately on track.

As everyone's saying, this is just terrible for the children. I agree completely, but probably not for the same reason you're thinking. When your life is filmed for a television program, you give up certain pity-rights. But before, this show was inspirational for new parents who sometimes feel overwhelmed (at least in my case). Now it's turning into some sort of drama where the focus has turned from the cute kids to the fighting parents. And something that should be a private matter is now very public and it's going to be with the children for their lives.

Probably in a 5 DVD box set. Also available in Blu Ray.

Friday, June 19, 2009


Pilot dies on trans-Atlantic flight

Wife of pilot: He was in "perfect health"

Monday, June 15, 2009

Once again, Waco, TX amazes.

I'm not sure if you've heard, but recently Bill Nye ("The Science Guy") gave a lecture in Waco, Texas which had an interesting moment:

McLennan Community College
The Emmy-winning scientist angered a few audience members when he criticized literal interpretation of the biblical verse Genesis 1:16, which reads: “God made two great lights - the greater light to govern the day and the lesser light to govern the night. He also made the stars.”
He pointed out that the sun, the “greater light,” is but one of countless stars and that the “lesser light” is the moon, which really is not a light at all, rather a reflector of light.

A number of audience members left the room at that point, visibly angered by what some perceived as irreverence.

“We believe in a God!” exclaimed one woman as she left the room with three young children.
Forgive me if I'm wrong on this point, but I never thought believing in God and accepting truths about science to be mutually exclusive. Evidently, there are parts of this country (and indeed, the world) where this is not the case. Utterly, completely remarkable.
To quote (reference, really) Bill Hicks, I hope people know that evolution did not stop with the development of opposable thumbs. There is an evolution of the mind that should be occurring with the growth of the human race. Perhaps it's just me, but I'm thinking that the reason so many churches fail and the doctrines waaaay too antiquated is because they're no longer relevant. Time to evolve, people.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Pet Peeves redux

Please feel free to add your own:

1) People that pronounce robot, "robut". BOT BOT BOT.

2) People that do not use the very conveniently laid out sinks in a rest room. This goes especially for you, prostate dude. You know who you are.

3) Celebrities who really, truly, honestly believe their opinion matters. Smell that? It's sarcasm, Mr. Cruise.

4) Mixing languages to make you sound more intelligent (see title for example).

5) People NOT writing about themselves on Facebook. For fuck's sake, FB is a place built on the narcissism of it's users. In for a penny, in for a pound.

6) Companies using new, hot, trendy social networking sites for business advertising. Get the hell off my Twitter page, Chrysler.

7) Giving someone the benefit of the doubt. I can't help it myself. More often then not, I get burned. That's why it's a peeve.

8) Stupid ass terms like "pet peeve".

9) Motion pictures termed "indie" cannot be reviewed negatively. That is such horsepoo.

10) The concern of our president's race. I'm more concerned with his policies than his skin color, and I cannot stand the people that focus only on his race, youth or partisanship.

11) People who honestly give a crap over Microsofts new operating system and how Mac or Linux is so much better.

Monday, June 8, 2009

I can't find my favorite chapstick, not the one I left in my pocket whose life ended in my dryer, but my other favorite chapstick.

I blame terrorists

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Fine. Here's a post for ya.

For the most part, I have been pleased with President Obama's reign. I believe he's the guy that actually means it when he says, "The buck stops here". But when the buck stops, it seems that Mr. Obama will then go ahead and give that money to GM.

I understand that we are in a catastrophic financial time. I am aware that our economy needs stimulus. What I do NOT understand is how helping a large American auto maker which has been consistently producing sub par products for decades. 30 billion dollars. Someone needs to tell the powers that be that Japan and other countries have soundly beaten our companies with superior products. Let's put a DNR on this.

Explain to me, someone, how will this help the economy? I am extremely sympathetic towards the employees of GM and the other banks which have received stimulus money. But come on.

Can we please look to give money to middle-class Americans? The middle-class is responsible for keeping the market economy going. What about giving the middle-class 30 billion with the expressed directions to spend this money? Would that get the economy going faster than giving that money to an American dinosaur?


Let me know when someone posts something cynical.