Search My Blog

January 25, 2009

Gratz, Mr. President

I was in Denver on travel last week when Obama took over as the 44th President of this fantabulous country. I did not have the opportunity to watch it live but I hav ben hearing about it nonstop ever since. For four days straight Obama was front page of the USA Today. I don't read that paper but I had to look at it everytime I left my hotel room in the morning.

Although I did not vote for him I wish him the best of luck. He is going to need it to help get us out of his inherited mess. It is going to be a long road to get the American people out of this mini-depression and get both the economy and unemployment rates to reasonable levels. He has already made a few changes in that direction and they seem to be good for us as a nation. I do not, however, agree with his measure to close Gitmo and then to dismiss all intelligence data extracted under "torture". This was one of the main reasons I did not vote for Obama. I believe that he will weaken us as a nation as he tries to appease the rest of the world's concerns about our intentions. But I still keep my fingers crossed that he will do the right thing for us.

For the life of me I don't know why the American people would want a President to fail. True, he was not my first choice, but I don't want to see him fall on his ass. How the hell does that benefit us? How will that fix our current state of affairs. The same could be said of Bush. People hated him so much that they wanted him to fail, and to fail so badly just so that they could point there finger and say "HA!". Some people hated him so much that they didn't vote for Obama so much as they voted against Bush's party. I have to admit that Palin didn't help the Republicans cause. What the fuck were they thinking?

The inauguration was a historic event and African Americans had something really big to celebrate. They finally broke that barrier and parents can truly tell their children that they can become president of the United States. The rest of us can now safely swing off of Obama's nuts for the next 4 years and revel in the change that is surely on its way. In all honesty, the fact that Obama is the first black president really didn't mean that much to me, nor would having Hilary as the first female president, had it gone that way. I'm not racist or sexist but probably some other "-ist" word that escapes me at the moment. Minority and gender barriers are constantly being challenged in our country and those barriers are broken so much these days that it just doesn't surprise me when one makes it to a high profile and important position. We will have our first woman president, our first Latino president, and eventually, our first president who is just a head mounted on a cybernetic body.

Because I am in the solar industry, I am extremely interested in Obama's renewable energy ideas and implementation. I am waiting with baited breath for him to allot some obscene amount of money for solar incentives. Surprisingly, in this shitty economy, the renewable energy companies are doing quite well.

My daughter is cute to watch when Obama appears on TV. She recognizes him and says his name over and over. She wants to meet him, so much so in fact, that every time we get ready to go somewhere she asks us if we are going to see "pedent bama". She's 2 years old.

My only concern is that Jon Stewart continues to be funny and has new material since Bush is no longer in office. We can only hope.

January 3, 2009

Wall Street and the Monkeys

Once upon a time a man appeared in a village and announced to the villagers that he would buy monkeys for $10 each.

The villagers, seeing that there were many monkeys around, went out to the forest and started catching them.

The man bought thousands at $10 and, as supply started to diminish, the villagers stopped their effort. He next announced that he would now buy monkeys at $20 each. This renewed the efforts of the villagers and they started catching monkeys again.

Soon the supply diminished even further and people started going back to their farms. The offer increased to $25 each and the supply of monkeys became so scarce it was an effort to even find a monkey, let alone catch it.

The man now announced that he would buy monkeys at $50 each. However, since he had to go to the city on some business, his assistant would buy on his behalf. In the absence of the man, the assistant told the villagers: "Look at all these monkeys in the big cage that the man has already collected. I will sell them to you at $35 and when the man returns from the city, you can sell them to him for $50 each."

The villagers rounded up all their savings and bought all the monkeys for 700 billion dollars.

They never saw the man or his assistant again, only lots and lots of monkeys.

Now you have a better understanding of how the Wall Street bail out plan will work.

January 1, 2009

Another one bite the dust

Another year has passed by, not so quietly I might add, and this morning I begin to prepare my New Years tradition of making a pot of posole stew. My family indulges me by eating a small bowl of it but I usually end up eating the whole pot- they like posole better than black eyed peas so I can't complain too much.

In retrospect, 2008 was a big year for not only me and my family but also for the United States. The election is probably the biggest news of the year although Israel starting a 'Bomb the shit out of Gaza' campaign right after Christmas is high on the list. As of today, they just killed a high ranking Hamas leader. Good, fuck Hamas.

Getting back on track, I thought about researching and making a grand post about all the significant events that occured this year, for prosperity I suppose, but a quick Google search would save about 4 hours of work and I have posole to attend to. At the beginning of the year I was working 2 part time retail jobs and needless to say was not seeing my family on weekends and holidays very often. I don't know if any of you have ever worked retail but I have a newfound respect for those people. It really sucks as far as the hours go. I worked for 2 big companies and although I truly enjoyed working there but the hours gave me flashbacks to being on the boat. I was not making enough money and joined the ranks of millions of Americans who felt the pinch of the dwindling economy. Were it not for the generosity of my family, I would be in a very different place.

At the beginning of the year my brother-in-law was still recuperating from his car accident caused by his friend who fell asleep at the wheel. The driver and my brother's girlfriend were ok but the driver's girlfriend was killed and my brother suffered severe head trauma and will need constant care for the rest of his life. It has been extremely hard on my wife's side of the family but they are strong and have come a long way. My brother was able to come to both Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner at my home and could eat by himself, get around by himself, and actually have a conversation with us.

This year really tested me in ways the Navy didn't throughout my 20 years in that canoe club although it truly prepared me for 2008. But I cannot recall a single time in my life where I prayed as much as I have over the last year. Most of my prayers were answered: My brother-in-law has recovered as much as he can. I got a really good full time job that is exactly what I wanted to do when I retired from the Navy. My kids are healthy, although I am still wondering when my prayers of them all getting along for more than 15 minutes will be answered. I have transportation. I have food for my family and a place to live. I have traveled to parts of the world my submarines never did. My wife continues to support me, love me, and even continues to tolerate my 4-year (semi-addiction now) subscription to World of Warcraft. I can say without a doubt that if it weren't for her that I would be a very unhappy man, bitter and empty.

I'll continue to pray- looking ahead to the new year and all the changes that are on the starring block I think we should all pray a little bit more. But if you aren't going to do that, than at least try to be part of the solution, try to be part of something bigger than yourself, try to be something besides an asshole. I think that would make the world a more tolerable place to live in.