2011-10-30

1984

Orwell's 1984.

A commentary on the coming socialism or oligarchic corporatism?

Madoff's Crime Doesn't Necessarily Extend To Family

I absolutely believe the family wasn't aware of what Bernie Madoff was up to. More likely, they were used as reported on 60 Minutes.

No cash. Just electronic papers. Easy to fool anyone; including loved ones.

I reject the prosecutor assertion that they "should have known." If my father, cousin or uncle break the law, is it a stretch to believe I'm not connected?

Hundred of thousands of trades a day.

Perspective: During my time in the brokerage world, I was part of a business with $380 million in assets of which I was directly responsible for $18 million. We barely cleared 20 trades a day.

Anyway.

What a tragedy.

Top Horror Films

Into horror films?

Here's a Top 75 list

What? No Scanners?

I've watched about 26 of those flicks.

Some of them in parts. Like Zombieland. Not sure which Argento movie I saw. There was a time I was consuming a few Italian B-Horror flicks. Also saw the early gothic ones like King Kong, Nosferatu and The Phantom of the Opera. The last two were creepy.

Always meant to watch Eraserhead but never got around to it. It used to play often enough at an independent film theater I would frequent back in my university days.

Now.

Let's just say there are pages of films I'd like to see.

Procreation And Nihilism

Free will.

I know. Heavy.

Procreation and nihilism.

What am I talking about?

Free choice and judgment.

Commentator, look at the window and enjoy this pill. You're over stressed.

We "know" people close to us who are young, healthy and modestly comfortable who willingly choose to not have children; or as we say in the business, procreate.

The reasons given are rational (economic, time, potential sickness etc.) enough. It may teeter, to some, on mere excuses, but why judge another's decision?

Is choosing (presumably of free choice and will) not to procreate under the auspices of rational thought a form of nihilism? Is it skirting your responsbility as a human? That is, we apply a "we'll still survive. What am I going to change?" Indeed, Africa and Asia more than bring up birth rates picking up the slack from the West who have chosen to shrink the family of which I'm a part of with one child in my clan.

If there's one universal law observed by all cultures and religions it's procreation. After all, no noogie-woogie no species.

I suppose I'm insinuating not procreating is a law that's not up for discussion.

But being the wretched, thinking creatures we are, it is up for discussion. People will argue for the most useless of things so why not the issue of procreation?

Just throwing it out there.

2011-10-28

Marketing Idea For The NHL

Why not have an Original Six night every year? Market the socks off the sport's heritage. The NHLhit a home run with the Winter Classic but it doesn't mean it should sit on its icy ass.

Montreal, Toronto, Boston, New York, Detroit and Chicago. As in go, go do it.

You heard it here first.

Sticking It Violently To The Man

Why is it each time I read about Occupy Wall St. protestors are "vowing" to not back down from police implying the willingness to resort to violence yet the much reviled Tea Party rarely, if ever, tangled with the cops?

The second I see destruction of private property and violence you lose instant credibility with me.

Is the Tea Party more peaceful in its demonstrations?

2011-10-26

Ressurection Of A Dying Breed?

I thoroughly enjoyed this article about the plight of the "deep-lying midfielder" in soccer.

All I know is here in North America there's yet to be a real appreciation for players like Andrea Pirlo. Here, we tend to apply a "hockey" mentality to soccer tactics. We like to place emphasis on physicality and aggressive play. As long as you run (even if it's for nothing) and look like you're putting effort then you're more valuable than a player who deliberately slows down pace to create space; to orchestrate a midfield with proper vision and execution. Too slow for some!

Catholic Views

Lately I've been going on with the "you know, we really should go to Church for the child's sake every once in a while. It's good for the soul, you know?" line. We took her for Easter and it was a great experience.

Came across this information on Catholics and the Church.

Never heard of Catholic University of Americs until I came across this article about the rise of Muslim enrollment in Catholic Colleges.

I don't know, call me old school, but the Muslim complaint against CUA school is a stretch for me.

2011-10-23

Death Becomes Him

Morbid videos of Khadafi.

If you're into that sort of thing.

Thinking About Christianity's Theological Might

Flick of the baseball cap to SE for this.



I post this for two reasons. One, he's absolutely 100% correct about Christianity and it's a position I've held for a long time and touched on this blog. People who bash Christianity as a means to an ends - in this case the progressive secularist agenda - by foccusing on, typically, the Crusades for example, have not considered, obviously and conveniently, the full picture. I learned of Christianity's remarkable historical path when reading St. Augustine and St. Thomas back in university.

I further accept his belief that conversations with people who consider themselves Christian are deeper through my own personal experiences. Progressives leave me wanting and they do tend to engage in circular sophistry rarely ever seeing the critical errors or hypocrisy of their own positions. They tend to get overly emotion and irrational; two things they claim to avoid and accept respectively. Hence, why some of us ignore them.

I also add military generals to this mix. I've met a couple in my life, one American and the other Canadian, read a few essays and still heard more on television in interviews, and found them to be fascinating in their broad knowledge and intelligent applications of various thoughts and ideas.

Finally, his position on Steve Jobs (his origins in criminal activity) enlightened me and it's an interesting point about whether Apple will succeed moving forward. If he's correct about how Job's was as a personality, then he was not a visionary in terms of how he was going to leave Apple.

OWS Demands Unrealistic

So. These are the OWS demands? Seriously?

Free everything he wants.

Look. There are problems and there are pockets of demands here that could be useful, but overall?

Ridiculous.

Like free college tuition, guarenteed wages (guaranteed $20 minimum wage no less...Total ignorance of economic forces to suggest this...*face palm*)  and forgiving of all debts.  Get real. Talk about bending over and giving up on life by letting the state control it.

***

As for eradicating the way credit companies report I tend to agree. Credit departments wield waaaayyyyy too much power on the economy. Ratios and severe reporting that can ruin a life should be reconsidered. The silly things I've been told and been through with them. You can have a pristine record for 20 years and they will still wreck you if you, heaven forbid, miss two payments that you end up paying anyway.

A lot of it is full of shit and arbitrary no matter how it makes sense to them.

However, on the flip side, I know how irresponsible people can be when it comes to signing up for credit and loans by not even grasping basic concepts of minimum payments. The bottom line is if you borrow, you must pay it back. If you willingly took it then you're accountable to give it back. Stop skirting the issue with things like "well, it's for my education ergo it's good for us all" mumbo jumbo. Go to work (at whatever wage you get), save and pay it back. That's the deal. No, I don't think people should subsidize your post-secondary education. People manage and so should these people from OWS.

I'm not buying that the whole mortgage and credit mess falls only on Wall St. The government and ultimately the people have to shoulder the blame too.

Finally, life has no guarantees. It's just the way it is.

I can't handle irrational idealism.

It's No Fun Being An Illegal Alien

In lieu of the illegal alien problem in the USA we at The Commentator Central dedicate this song to it. Gee, 28 years already. I remember this video:



Phil Collins and Paul Simon - two funny dudes.

Ironies

Obamin Laden and to major a has now whacked four major malignant tumors on the international political scene - Khaddafi, Bin Laden and two major Al-Queda leaders. Can the Iranian dude be next? Why not! Obama is on a role. If Obama was a baseball player he'd be Albert Pujols.

Who would have thought foreign policy and the willingness to use force would prove to be Obama's trump card heading into an election year? Not bad for a guy who won the peace prize, huh? Speaking of awards, peaceful Norway also played a key role in Libya. Ironies, ironies.

Let's be frank and charlie here. Without the "awesome lethality" of American military might, France, Britain and NATO notwithstanding, Libya is still in the hands of Khaddafi.

Personally, like Hussein, the death of Khaddafi doesn't bother me none despite the debate on interventionism. The mad dictator had to account for Lockerbie.

Now the real fun begins. Let's see what happens in Libya now.

2011-10-20

Khaddafi Dead

Middling Notes On American Politics


Ok. Fine. Be like that.

Still.

It's hilarious. *Pounds fist on table repeatedly*

Well.

Not really.

It's sad to see America degrade itself this way. Canada doesn't have a Mexico on its borders so we'll never know how we would react to illegal - not legal immigration - but illegal immigration. Probably softer?

***

Speaking of USA, it's no secret it's going through a hard time but really, Adbusters is behind Occupy Wall St.? Adbusters?? A Canadian - let alone British Columbia - based left-wing magazine? Who, by the way, I've purchased from time to time in the past. It got to be a tad rich for me over time.

Anyway.

It's ironic that "calm" Canada contributed a movement to the land of rebellion. Have Americans gotten that lazy they can't even be bothered to start up their own rebellions on the left side? It also is getting endorsement from American Nazi organizations and the Communist party of America.

Nice.

Leftist libertarians need to find, sigh, another home.

Say what you want, at least the Tea Party is 'Murican. Tried, tested and true, no? Last I heard anyway.

***

And last, the economy.

Still betting on America. Long term trends - notably demographics - remain in their favor (and America Jr. Canada) as compared to the EU and China. Or even emerging "powers" like India and Brazil. Man, those countries have major problems to iron out before even whiffing at the thought of being a self-sufficient powerhouse.

Environment, innovation and flexible labor force too is in their favor. Add it all up and I put my token on the eagle.

***

No chance to research this but heard VP Joe Biden make some interesting, at the least, claims about connecting a bad economy to rapes and murders. Basically, his argument is "don't pass the jobs bill and watch rape and murders continue to increase."

Man. If anything screamed for empirical evidence it's this. It makes some sense that poverty can lead to social unrest but to link Obama's bill the way he did directly to murder? Here in Canada, we take as much as we can off the streets and put them in welfare projects. It's not perfect and it's expensive but it does seem to keep our streets safer as a whole. Montreal (with a population of 3 million) averages, what, 90 murders per year?

Didn't realize America's budding employment underclass were ticking rape and murder bombs.

***

No real time to waste on blogging these days. Be back real soon I reckon.

Much have been needing my comments and attention but hey, you'll live.

***

Holy crap. The Cardinals are making it happen. LaRussa is directly having a managerial impact isn't he?

2011-10-13

Occupy Wall St. Jumps The Shark


Celebrities are now lending their names to the occupation of Wall St. People with serious dough like Jon Stewart, Keith Olbermann and Yoko Ono.

Yawn.

Wake me when the next movement comes along.

***

Been reading that the protestors are targeting the homes of Koch brothers.

What I'd like to know, and I've asked this before, is why George Soros gets a pass with leftists? That guy profits more than most off the misery of nations. I guess he gets one up on them because he talks like he's a humanist but acts like a capitalist. Keep 'em distracted. Useful morons for real.

When Green Turns Red

Now that's a low return!

"According to the Labor IG report, as of June 30, grantees had placed 8,035 participants into jobs, or 10 percent of the program's target. Long-term unemployment numbers are worse, with 1,336 participants finding jobs for six months or longer. That's 2.5 percent of current participants, and 2 percent of the program's final target of 69,717."

Ouch. That hurts. Fret not. You can always blame it on bad civil discourse.

Cycle Of Boom Bust

Recipe for Disaster Pancakes:

Simply, artificial low interests, and government guaranteeing all sorts of things in the private market place where speculators feast.

Add a pinch of sea salt and fresh coriander and enjoy with your favorite sex toy.

It's like saying to the borrower, "Here's the organic carrot you really can't afford. It's like magic" and to the lender "itsokay if they're risky we got your back."

On three levels you had explosive speculation that basically led to a depression. At which point, it explodes and everyone screams for more regulation, temporary stimulus and higher taxes to make up for the losses. Ugly vicious cycle that.


What do you expect will happen next?

Fill in the blank.

2011-10-12

Occupying The Commentator

In observing Occupy Wall St. from afar and comparing it to the Tea Party, a couple of things are noticeable: It's not so diverse a crowd, there are no screams of racism despite clearly having an anti-Obama impulse and it's more ready to break the law as the mounting arrests have shown. That and the fact millionaire celebrities pimp out their two cents. How's about they return their "ill-got" gains to make a point about the evils of capitalism? Thought so. Here's a stage. Now sing and shut up. I don't care it's a contradictory command just do it!

As for the sign seen in the picture, well, the system is designed so that everyone needs debt. Debt is what keeps things moving along. It's not perfect but it is reality.

It's the same $95 trillion that circulates. The trick is to know when and how to utilize it. I'm in debt. 90% of it tied to my business. Before that, I never carried any carrying costs of any kind because I was aware of how interest kills. Now, I have to swallow it.

It's brutal but I don't play tricks with my mind hoping (even demanding) someone owes me by "forgiving" the debt as some on Occupy St. unrealistically, if not insanely, assert. I alone chose to take the debt in a risk-reward calculation just like anyone who, say, take out debt for a student loan.

No one owes you anything for that decision.

That's what it's all about: Risk versus reward. The degree of which you choose in either is your return. Simple. And yes, the odds and leverage are stacked against you in the beginning since, you know, it's not your money. But if you're smart , work hard or lucky - or all three -  you'll be able to turn leverage in your favor.

Not arguing about the morality or philosophy of money; just stating the obvious. Personally, interest (or usury) especially excessive interest like those charged by credit companies is immoral. Worse, they can turn around and ruin you with your score. It's a type of loansharking. Sometimes I wonder if it's better to get your legs broken. At least you'll heal inside six months. Your credit can ruin you for at least seven years. Islam may have it right on that one.

The Occupy Wall St-Tea Party movements are the latest events in the "who gets to control the money supply" evolution. One picks the banks ( a common theme in American history. Just read Andrew Jackson's term or the overall belief of how American leaders (I believe as far back as Jefferson) held central banking in suspicion) and the other the government (another common theme in American history. For that, just read the Founding Fathers).

The kid may as well have a sign that reads the "sky is blue" and move on with what's left of what I hope is a promising future free of excuses. To be perfectly honest, I don't think most of these people have a clue...


Obama's Apolorama

If true, then, well, then he ain't too bright or wise of a leader. What's the point? What's with all this apologizing? Lordy me, how much apologizing do many nations have to do! Obama seems to look into the past as means to an end to progress. It's faulty logic.

Let sleeping dogs lie. And so let history sleep peacefully where possible.

It's hard to justify anything that takes lives but if we stick to the facts and reality of history, the U.S. did what it had to do to put an end to a war in which Japan had no interest in surrendering.

More to the point, the barbarian acts of Japanese and German atrocities were heinous and without any thought to established rules of engagement in war. Discussion on the legitimacy of American invovlement aside, they raped, maimed, butchered and murdered into the millions.

Dropping the atomic bomb effectively ended the madness started by Europe and engaged an imperialist Japan.

Fate made it so the Americans got the bomb. Not Nazi Germany. Think about that.

Move on.

2011-10-10

More On Calvillo

Calvillo makes it to ESPN. Sorta. Nice article.

Makes you realize just how off the radar the CFL is in the USA but Americans exposed to it do come to at least appreciate it.

Part of it is the league's own inability to market itself, and part of it just plain not of the same quality as the NFL. The CFL is a quirky, charming league that has stood the test of time. Somehow, despite all its remarkable imperfections, mediocrity and poor marketing (the CFL website needs some work, while its main broadcaster TSN also needs to work on its CFL webpage - for example, standings are not updated fast enough. Sometimes you want to shake someone out of their slumber), the league has not only survived, but improved over the last decade. Heck, as any Canadian knows, the Grey Cup final was superiour in entertainment value to most Super Bowls for a period in the 1980s and early 2000s. It still is a fascinating event.

It's not surprising the league attracted Kramer. There's a Krameresque feel to the entire operation and we love it for that. I mean, the league, the joke went, had only nine teams but two with the name Rough Riders. They were only differentiated by the fact one team, Ottawa, used it in two words and the other - Saskatchewan - one. And, to make things all the more uniquely Canuckian, there's nothing Canadian in the name either as the term Roughrider is actually American.

I don't even know why this is so.

It's a good league with a rich history; longer than the NFL in fact. It has produced wonderful football players like Ron Lancaster, Joe Theisman, Doug Flutie, Warren Moon, Angelo Mosca, Peter Dalla Riva, Milt Stegall and Tony Gabriel and unforgettable dynasties with the Edmonton Eskimos (outdated name forgiven) yet it remains an obscure fixture on the Canadian psyche and even more so to Americans despite there only being two real pro leagues on the continent.

With the enormous amount of players in the U.S. and now increasingly in Canada (Quebec in particular), it makes perfect sense the CFL is now gaining some amount of traction. It should be a viable option for football players as it adds eight more chances (the league used to have nine teams but Ottawa continues to be a basket case) for kids to try their hand at pro football - and in some cases a last chance to get to the NFL. Everyone - NCAA, Canadian university football, NFL, CFL, even NFL Europe) has (or should have) a vested interest in keeping the CFL game alive and healthy.

That all being written, it doesn't diminish Calvillo's record in any way. Sure the CFL has traditionally been a "passing" league but 72 000 plus yards is a lotta yards in any league. Period.

***

MNF with Chris Berman mentioned it. Berman, who goes as far as to actually string together a couple of sentences in French, really seems to respect the CFL.

Prime Time Murder

For the more macabre minded.

Can't We Just Get Along?

Or how I learned to love The Tea Party and Occupy Wall St.

You know, aside from the dipshits on both sides of the movements, they do both make valid points. The Tea Party was spurred by the perceived expansion of government and massive bail outs for cronies and dead beats.

Occupy Wall St. is concerned about central banking and interventionist foreign policy.

The TP has right-wing leanings, OWS left-wing. Though some of the comments I heard from OWSers on economic policywas face-palm inducing it was so stupid.

Still.

One thing is clear. Americans aren't pleased.

***

Speaking of which, it's interesting - unwittingly of course - to note how Occupy Wall St. hasn't taken to the streets without the slightest recognition of an ironic item. While they may not see themselves as attacking Obama - most probably would vote for him . They see their protest as strictly against banksters - the cold, hard, disbelieving fact remains Goldman-Sachs - the prime suspect among conspiracy theorists and sober skeptics alike - has doled out a pretty penny to Obama.

Or Else What?

President Obama is going on with the "pass this jobs bill or else" line.

Or else what?

72 382

That's the number of yards (well, 72 387 to be exact) Quarterback Anthony Calvillo of the Montreal Alouettes has amassed during his 18 years (14 with the Als) in the CFL. The number sets the all-time record in pro football in any league.

It was enough of an achievement to have Miami Dolphins legend Dan Marino and ESPN's Chris Berman to salute Calvillo. Warren Moon, who orginally played for the Edmonton Eskimos before moving onto the NFL with stints with the Houston Oilers, Seattle Seahawks, Minnesota Vikings and Kansas City Chiefs, also made a video appearance congratulating Calvillo.

The three time Grey Cup champion Calvillo surpassed Marino, Moon, Bret Favre and CFL legend Damon Allen to move into first spot all time.

Hands down the Los Angeles native and former Utah State University player (where he led the Aggies to the Big West conference title and a Las Vegas Bowl win; setting a regular pasing record along the way) is one of Montreal's greatest athletes ever.

2011-10-08

Jobs And Davis Pass Away

Forgive me Father for it's been three days since I've blogged.

Like you care.

Or you.

In the days since, in the meantime, not one but two icons have passed on.

The first was Apple founder Steve Jobs. Yes, him I consider a genius for the ages. It goes without saying he literally revolutionized computers.

The second was Al Davis who turned the Oakland Raiders into an infamous, powerful iconic brand and successful football organization - three Super Bowl championships and four appearances in the final. He was instrumental in turning the NFL into the massive operation it is.

I couldn't let the week pass without some mention of these events.

2011-10-04

Daycare Update

Six months in and I still don't see why payroll taxes are levied to the extent they are on small business. I don't mind paying some, but when the stated hourly wage of $16 actually costs you $19 it's a tad high when you're starting out.

I know I can deduct this off my corporate income tax at the end of the year, however, the reality is it needs to be paid out up front. I need the money now. This may contribute, in part, to small businesses carrying more debt than required.

As I've stated in the past, why not begin levying taxes (including rent) one year after operations have begun? Give the business a real shot at succeeding. Every bit counts.

2011-10-02

Playing With Words

My new advertising campaign for the daycare:

Where every kid is cute, even the ugly ones!

Comments?

Play On Words

Been noticins the commercial for Red Lobster and its slogan, (we) Sea Food Differently!

Which made me think if I was a marketer for a shooting gallery or gun or swingers club:

Cum Shoot With Us!

When Green Begins To Turn Red

Next up. Sterling Energy.