this post is called gambling. which is kind of a bad name. it should really be, how to get rich without creating a single job. which is also kind of a bad name. on account of being way too long. anywho. imagine a bunch of folks sitting at a table playing some sort of card game for money. everyone plays with the money in front of them. nobody leaves or joins. i'm really good at this game. my opponents are not. the pile of cash in front of me gets bigger and bigger. i'm "rich". i haven't created any money. i've just taken it from the other players. we all go back to work and meet again next week for another game. folks are unhappy cause they're losing. well, i say. what we need is a bigger pot. if we had a bigger pot you'd still lose to me. but you'd go home with more cash. cool! you say. how do we get a bigger pot? easy i say. just do these three things: 1) bring more money to the table next week. 2) bring a friend to play with us. 3) give me an extra card every hand. okay! you say. huh, i say. shrugs i. anywho, obviously i'm not talking about a card game. i'm talking about the stock market. i'm the hedge fund managers and the day traders who are taking your money. the 1-2-3 plan is tax cuts for me. equally obviously real life is much more complex than the simple story i've told. but hey! jesus made a living and got a billion people to do his bidding by telling parables. figure i can too. want to see me walk on water? how about some really deep water?
katz is doing better. she seems to have recovered control of her bowels again. whew. and has somewhat regained control of her bladder. though she seems to have forgotten exactly where the pee comes out. i swear she must be standing in the litter box and peeing over the side. anywho. she's up and about again. she's tried to jump up onto the bed a few times. but failed. the beautiful and talented alisa seems to have nursed her back to something resembling health. she scoops up katz and lets her snuggle on the bed with us for a while. she sleeps on an old pillow in the bathroom now. she needs to be close the litter box. it's a lot easier to clean cat pee off of linoleum than carpet. anywho, i kinda miss her at night. she was a bit of a katzerweight on top of the comforter. held it in place all night long. now the comforter tends to slide off the bed. usually the foot. one or both humans end up uncovered. and cold.
i got a new pillow. well, it's new to me. it's the beautiful and talented alisa's old pillow. she got a new pillow. a real life new pillow. it's got a horrific new pillow smell. but they assure me it will wear off soon. anywho, she's been having trouble with her neck. the hope is it helps. the guest bed got a new mattress. two actually. well, new to that bed. they came from garrett's bed. garrett got a new mattress too. well, it's new to him. he got a new box board thing too. a real life new box board thing. the mattress is the beautiful and talented alisa's old mattress. she got a new one. it's kinda slippery. and it doesn't have the extra firm border on the edges that keep clumsy old men from falling out. the old mattress was 10 years old. almost exactly. she slept on it one night. well, half a night. her water broke early in the morning. and she didn't get to sleep in it again for a week. poor dear. we dubbed it the labor inducing mattress. though there's not much chance of that happening again. since neither the beautiful and talented alisa nor g are pregnant.
so the other day g and i were in toys-r-us picking up presents for his brother. somehow the subject of donkey kong came up. i was waxing nostalgic back to the days of arcades outside of movie theaters. of pac man, mario brothers, night driver, galaga, space invaders, tempest, and gorf. anywho, i asked him, do you even know who donkey kong is? he has an n64 (thanks joe!). so i was expecting an answer along the lines of he's the big monkey in super mario cart. anywho, g says, he's a really big gorilla that climbed the empire state building and swatted at airplanes.
husbandry is the art of picking which plants and animals get to breed with which others. the trick is to add a desirable trait. or to remove an undesirable one. these cross breeds are called hybrids. those that improve on their parent organisms go on to feed the world or become president of the united states.
every now and then some drunk feels the need to demonstrate his studliness by picking a fight with someone. not just anyone though. usually it's the biggest guy in the bar who gets a drink thrown at him. it's really not fair to the big guy. cause he's gonna catch hell when he kicks the drunk's ass. i know exactly it feels. every now and then some idiot decides to prove how smart they are by telling me and everyone who'll listen that i'm wrong. it's really annoying. best practice is to ignore them. which is an option our friend in the bar doesn't really have. anywho, i thought it'd be fun to make a little game of this phenomenon. a while ago i started inserting intentional errors into my posts. sometimes they're easy like spelling or grammar errors. other times they're subtle logic errors. and oh yeah, if you find where i'm completely totally wrong please tell everyone you know that i'm an idiot. the biggest idiot on the planet. tell them over and over. at least 100 times. make sure they know you're smarter than i am.
boom & bust
free markets are wonderful things. especially during the boom times. not so much during the bust times. however, we need both in order for the free market economy to work its magic. during the boom times we take risks on crazy ideas that just might work. during the bust times the dumb ideas go out of business. the old decrepit companies are replaced by the young strong ones. if you try to mitigate the busts, you'll just end up hurting everyone. we get straddled with inefficient companies that depend on government support to stay in business. which prevents new world leaders from taking their place. sigh.
more on 8
the argument has been made for getting the state out of the marriage business. a diverse spectrum has acknowledged this as a good idea. the argument against is it would be too much work to change all the laws on the books that reference marriage. hrm. sheehs. let the homos do the work. it's kinda silly to be opposed to something that doesn't cost you anything and has a perceived (if not actual) benefit to others.
i wonder how many people thought they were voting for david palmer.
folks make a big deal about how 50%+1 of the people get to tell 50%-1 of the people what to do. majority rule and all that. however it sure looks like 50 million voters are pure republican voters. and 50 million voters are pure democrat voters. or maybe there's 100 million people who vote completely randomly. assuming a poisson distribution the votes would be 50 million to 50 million give or take 0.01 million. anywho i got distracted by math. numbers so pretty. gah. anywho. there seem to be some 3-6 million voters who actually make the difference. not sure who they are. there could be 3 million independents that jump back and forth between red and blue. they could be 3 million democrats (and 3 million republicans) who stay home when they're not excited about their candidate and the other guy isn't so bad. which means the 50%+1 theory is dog meat. really 3% of the people get to tell 97% of the people what to do.
before we were married, the beautiful and talented alisa and myself wandered into the living room at tao house where joe was watching fletch. the beautiful and talented alisa didn't recognize the movie and asked, what's this? i said, it's dr rosenpenis. alisa: it's what? me: dr rosenrosen. alisa: oh that's not what i heard ... me: dr rosen. at this point joe was belly laughing. he had obviously seen the movie before and knew that chevy chase and the hot chick were about to have that very exchange.
i think obama won the moment he tricked mccain into accepting public financing. that limited mccain's advertising budget to about $84 million while obama's was limited to about $1 trillion. whoever's running the obama show is good. rove was pretty good too. but not in this guy's class.
it's weird. my conservative buddies seem to be doing okay. they're listing the positives. heh, their list is longer than mine. they're doing way way better than i did in '00 and again in '04. course they didn't go into election day thinking they were gonna win.
there were no surprises this year. of course this year not many folks were voting on paperless electronic machines. now, i believe in the integrity of your basic human as much as or more so than the next guy. but sheehs. give a guy a chance to change the fate of the world without the possibility of getting caught and they'll go for it. for the greater good. though i was pretty worried when mccain started guaranteeing a victory two weeks out. thought maybe he knew the fix was in. again. 'course a mccain presidency wouldn't have been all that bad.
i like dragons. dragons are way cool. massive ancient engines of fire breathing destruction. err... do dragons really breathe fire? i don't think so. you breathe gas. when gas burns it rises. usually the dragon's target is some hapless knight on the ground. so the dragon would have to get its head down really low and breathe /up/ on the knight. awkward to say the least. and leaves the dragon quite vulnerable. some dragons of literature breathe magic flames that lick. yeah, that's a cop out. some dragons belch fire. which implies that /breathing/ fire is something of a liberty in the name of literature. some dragon riders describe feeling the fires light in the dragon's belly. ah! now i think we're getting somewhere. dragon fire is more like napalm. it's a burning liquid that falls to the ground and sticks on things and burns them to a crisp. breathe is the wrong word. you don't breathe liquids from your belly. vomit and spew are much more true to the actual process. so the next time you read about the evil dragon belching fire on the hero, think of him covered in flaming vomit.
fact in fiction
trickle down economics is a myth. as i've said before. perhaps ad nauseum. but like many myths at the root is a bit of truth that just somehow got twisted into unrecognizability. if you grow the economy, ie the pie, everyone can have a larger slice. truth. and you grow the economy by giving tax breaks to the people and businesses that drive it. so far so good. but here's where things go south. entrepreneurs drive the economy. successful entrepreneurs get rich. ergo rich people drive the economy. and here we are at tinkle down economics. erp. people who start successful businesses drive the economy. they are the ones who should be getting the tax breaks in order to grease the wheels of the machine. it doesn't make any sense to give them tax breaks /after/ they get rich. they don't need them then. we need to give them the tax breaks when they're starting out and still poor. imagine this... you've worked your ass off a long time. and against the odds you made it. now all of a sudden you find yourself with cash and tax incentives to not work and just manage your portfolio. from a tropical island. what do you do? do you go back to the grind? of course not. this is pretty much the opposite of the desired effect.
i'm guessing that mickey mouse is registered to vote in hundreds of places around the country. fraudulently. i repeat the mantra that mickey mouse doesn't get to actually vote. but i'm willing to bet that he does slip in a vote or two. thousand. heh. though i wonder. does mickey mouse vote primarily republican or democrat? cause if he always votes one way or t'other... one would have a pretty good idea where to look for the wrong doers.
which candidate is most likely to die in office: obama or mccain? mccain is old. really old. and he has a young ambitious vice president. figure she'd wait until two years and a day into mccain's presidency before offing him. then she could be re-elected for two more complete terms. pesky term limits. and the other guy, obama? heh. there are still a whole lotta crazy folks in this country who'd party mad if the fine institution of slavery were re-instated. god bless america.
there are two obamas: obama the ideal and obama the real. the ideal offers many people hope and faith in government leaders etc blah blah blah. one can argue after so much bad economic news it's something we really really need. that by itself will do a whole lot to hasten economic recovery. the other obama is a politician. an occupation that requires you to be, well frankly, a two faced silver tongued liar. probably lotta folks are gonna be blinded by the pretty bright lights and not notice whatever mistakes this real life flesh and blood human makes. does this mean i think you should have voted for the other dude? heh. welp, he's a politician too. pick your liar.
so last post i mentioned deductive reasoning. i cannot stress how useful this skill is. the ability to gather information, evaluate it, and make logical informed decisions. awesome. schools should teach it. parents should make sure their kids get it. it is after all a fundamental requirement for a working democracy. now, if you can't quite master thinking for yourself, you're a) not alone. and b) not doomed. pick someone you can trust. do what they tell you to. but. and this is the critical thing. keep re-evaluating their performance. and dump them before they lead you into deep water, over a cliff. heh. or sell you an interest only home loan with a balloon payment. it doesn't make much sense to take financial advice from a person who's upside down on their own home. for example. it doesn't make much sense to take morality positions from an adulterer or a closet homo.
my right brain is homophobic. no doubt about it. however, the left brain overwhelms the right's spoiled brattitude with a massive volume of deductive reasoning. first, married people pay more taxes. second, legitimizing homo weddings make the fags happy. happy people are more productive. third, the government shouldn't discriminate against people based on race gender or sexual preference. so if the state offers a contract to two people who mutually agree to take care of each other and their children... then that contract has to be made available to any two people regardless of race gender or sexual preference. fourth, it sucks to be a foster kid. being adopted into a real family is huge improvement. even if that family has two dads. fifth, my role in my family has many obligations and responsibilities. none require a penis. i'm absolutely certain that if my dick fell off tomorrow our family would not suddenly become dysfunctional. want me to go on? assume the state does take a position on the definition of marriage. i guarantee some religions and morality clubs are going to be unhappy with the definition. no matter what it is. and sue. litigation is expensive. and in this case really really pointless.
i was wrong
i made the claim that if you showed up at a polling station with id stating you're mickey mouse and cast a ballot that's voter fraud. well, it's mostly right. if your name really is mickey mouse and you show up at a polling station with id and cast a ballot that's not voter fraud. thanks for the correction!
yes/no on 8
yeah okay. i confess. i didn't really do any of the things i said i did in the past three posts. they were just thought experiments. i think it has something to do with that whole initial impulse to be an asstard thing.
no on 8
the train platform seems to be a popular place for the no on 8 people. one stopped me. i couldn't help myself. in a loud voice i asked, ARE YOU A DYKE? DO YOU HAVE A GIRLFRIEND? DO YOU LICK HER CUNT? YOU'RE A CUNT LICKER. CAN I WATCH? I'LL PAY. HOW MUCH?
yes on 8
so the nice yes on 8 people came to our house. i explained that i had an african american son with microencephalia. i pointed to their flyers. yep, i says, apparently heterosexual couples that form the moral fabric of society aren't willing to adopt children unless they're healthy and white.
yes on 8
so the nice yes on 8 people came to our house. i asked to see their kkk cards.
so the other day some guy just gets off the train. he immediately whips out a cigarette. he didn't light it. which is good. he sees me with my skates going the other direction. and strikes up a conversation. or attempts to. i'm unresponsive. i want to smash my fist into this fucker's face. over and over. it would feel really good. i have no idea why i'm checking rage so hard i can't speak. he keeps trying to be friendly. i know it's not his fault personally that my nice old neighbor is dying of lung cancer. he doesn't know anything about the bedside vigil her family is keeping. he's not personally responsible for that labored rasp dell calls a breath. nope not him. no responsibility whatsoever. still.
i often take the express train home from work. at train time, i'm standing on the platform facing south. everyone else is facing north. they're watching the train. staring really. with slack jaws. i'm watching them. i wonder what they're thinking. it certainly isn't about what happened here yesterday. it's like a horror show. i know what's going to happen. it happens to the same people every day. the train comes. it's slowing. but is still moving pretty fast through the construction zone just north of the platform. the train picks up a huge cloud of dirt dust and other construction debris in its wake. the train pulls into the station. the pressure wave parts the hair on the back of my head. it drives said dust debris and particulates into the waiting passengers' eyes, up their noses, and into their mouths. some might remember this happened to them yesterday. but it won't matter. i won't see a single bald spot or hair whorl tomorrow.
the navy trains dolphins to do stuff for them. and the navy being the navy expects the dolphins to swim in formation with the ships. the dolphins are happy to play this game. when the ships go slow. when the ships go fast, the dolphins swim in the bow wave. there's no incentive, reward, bribe, or punishment can get them to swim anywhere else. the dolphins know it's the most efficient place to swim. the extra effort of swimming anywhere else isn't worth whatever reward the game has to offer. i feel like that sometimes at work. i've been swimming really fast for a long time. i'm tired. i've moved into the bow wave. and nothing's going to make me budge. we recently made a major decision to regress for what's effectively a demo. it might very well be the right decision for the company. but i'm old. i'm tired. i don't think i have the strength left to make that sprint to way out there and get back in time to still make the finish line. my help will have to come from the bow wave.
the problem with marriage is semantic. the term is overloaded. it means at least two different things. there's a divine marriage and a legal marriage. a divine marriage is god's blessing of a union of two people. as far as i'm concerned a church can define a marriage any way it wants. restricted to man/woman. fine. same race. fine. if you start a church that let's you marry a dog or cow. fine by me. erm i mean a canine and bovine. not an ugly or fat chick. anywho. polygamous divine marriages. stand in it. 51 year old man 13 year old girl. great! though it'd be illegal for them to engage in intercourse. now, on the other hand a legal marriage is a binding contract which gives gives each party certain rights and responsibilities. a person is responsible for their spouse's debts. they are each other's next of kin. they cannot testify against each other in a court of law. they have the married tax status. which makes them eligible for certain tax breaks. and certain tax penalties. basically, in the eyes of the law they are the same person. now obviously a legal marriage must be restricted to people who can actually enter a legally binding contract. that immediately eliminates minors, dogs, cows, and people not of sound mind. most divine marriages are also legal marriages. but not all. i think that's okay. as long as it's clear there's a difference. preferably by using different terms. some divine marriages can become legal marriages. eventually, our aforementioned 13 year old reaches the age of majority. at which point if she doesn't do anything to terminate her divine marriage it becomes a legal marriage. note that my definition of legal marriage allows gays and relatives to enter the marriage contract.
we need to fix our economy. first, we need to understand what's wrong with it. we've been spending our vast resources of labor and material on consumables instead of durables. we've been making fast food, cheap plastic toys, disposable diapers, cosmetic surgery, bombs, lawsuits, lottery tickets, aid programs, debt, etc. a country's "rich"-ness is measured by how much of this junk they have. we have had too much of that for too long. we need to get back to work on things that drive the economy. like education, roads, power lines, factories, technology, research, medicine, etc. let me channel reagan here. if we devote less effort to creating luxuries, we'll have more luxuries. you get more actual honest to goodness mouth watering yumminess by taking a small slice from a big pie.
2 v many
yesterday's post asked why we have two parties. simple (minded maybe): majority rule. 50%+1 tends to polarize everyone. the parties gravitate to the extremes. and sit there. forever. and only grudgingly cooperate with each other. now... suppose you needed 55% to pass laws. i'm hypothesizing you'd still have the two extreme parties. but you'd also have a new party with about 10% of the votes. this party would represent the currently disenfranchised middle. and it would have voting power out of proportion with its vote share. i explain. it could ally with the left to get one thing. and ally with the right to get another. alliances in the legislature would be a lot more fluid. currently, a right party member can't leave the right party. where's he going to go? the left party? ha ha. but if there were a middle party. one could take away the whips the party leaders use to keep their members voting as a block. individual lawmakers would have more latitude to represent the will of their constituents. ie the people. me. you.