Sunday, July 26, 2009

Illinois Politics

In Illinois the Republican and Democratic parties work together to fill their boots with as much taxpayers' cash as possible. They see their job as enriching themselves and their buddies and hiring armies of otherwise unemployable patronage workers on the public dime.

The second to last governor went to jail; the last governor is going to jail after his trial next year; and the current governor is essentially a brain-dead plank of wood they wheel around to make speeches.

Currently the state is $11,500,000,000 in the red. The architect of this cluster-fuck, greasy turd and State Treasurer, Alex Giannoulias, is running for Senate where he'll be able to bring his great talent to bear on stretching the national debt even further.

After watching the movie Cool Hand Luke recently my personal manifesto for the State of Illinois is to take everybody in the state house, chain them together, and make the bone idle lying fuckers dig roads and sleep in tents for three years. In most cases this would be the only time in their lives they had actually done an honest job.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Truth is Stranger than Fiction

In 1973 Woody Allen made a wonderful science fiction movie called Sleeper

Set in 2173, it tells the story of a man (Allen) who wakes up after being in suspended animation for 200 years. At that time there is a totalitarian government operating in what used to be the United States. ["Resisters to mind reprogramming will be eliminated for the good of state!" "What kind of government ya got here? This is worse than California!"] The head of the government has been blown up by the resistance leaving only a trace behind - his nose. The government plans to clone a new leader from the old leader's nose and it's Allen's job to stop them.

Why do I bring this up? Because it turns out that somebody has stolen Michael Jackson's nose. Apparently somebody in the morgue says that there was only a small hole where his nose should have been.

So right now, are the highups at Jackson's record company trying to clone a whole new Michael Jackson?

So they get to cash in on his death - and his resurrection!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Read the Cliff's Notes

Now here is an excellent article

Since many of you do not have the time to read it in its entirety, permit me to paraphrase

"The taxpayers of the Western world can no longer afford to subsidise the greedy lazy useless nonproductive deadbeat parasitical portion of the population: namely welfare claimants and government workers".

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Why is service so appalling in the UK?

One of the many areas in which the USA leads the world is food. At any time I can choose from a huge variety of great places to eat excellent food at reasonable prices served by polite, helpful and pleasant staff, whom my wife constantly complains that I tip too much.

Contrast that to the UK. If you don't fancy Indian, Chinese or Thai, which are mostly excellent, the equivalent of a hundred and fifty dollars gets a barely adequate meal for 4, with the courses arriving at different times, probably not even hot, badly cooked, with long waits, and surly service.

And now thanks to this post we have the reason.

So you have a choice when offered a job worth around £15,500 or less: take it, work hard, earn your own money or do nothing and get the same amount of money. What if you are offered a job for £16,000? You would be better off by £6.63 per week, not £9.61, due to tax. That's not a lot of money for a lot more work. £17,000 makes you £19.90 better off per week instead of £28.85 because of tax.

The State seemingly doesn't want people at the job centre to get jobs (or it would be making them do a lot more), and even if they are offered a job, unless they are offered a good wage (average in the UK is about £25,000) there is little incentive to take it.

If I decide to move into a flat on housing benefit, I will have a large incentive not to take a job unless it comes with a good. So, no bar jobs, no part time waiter work, etc. It just doesn't pay. The same goes for the other 2.38 million people.

And there you have it. Thanks to the caring socialists in charge, it just doesn't pay to do that kind of work. Hence the restaurants can't get enough staff, and those they do get are only there because they can't for some reason get enough benefits, which explains their attitude. No wonder eating out in the UK was always such a hit or miss proposition.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

An utter travesty

I saw something in Target the other day which pulled me up short

That's right. Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World in the bargain bucket for $4.75.

This film is based on the twenty-volume "Master and Commander" series by Patrick O'Brian (1914-2000). I've read the whole series several times, and I enjoy it more each time. The prose is the most beautiful I've ever read; the underlying research would provide material for a dozen PHd theses; I'm sure I will never read anything better in my lifetime; indeeed, the fervour of many devotees approaches religious levels of intensity.

Peter Weir and John Collee therefore had their hands full creating a 2 hour movie based on the canon. I would have said the books were not filmable. I would have expected Hollywood would have added a few sword-wielding pirate queens, for example. But they created a most excellent adaptation, preserving much of the feel of the books, with state of the art special effects, and a wonderful cast. There were very few false notes struck and overall I think the movie was a staggering achievement.

The movie also made me think Russell Crowe is probably the best actor working right now. I could not imagine anybody playing Jack Aubrey convincingly, but Crowe pulled it off.

So I was very sad to see it available at a knock-down price.

I despaired when I saw this on an adjacent shelf.

$4.75 for a cinematic masterpiece where the best acting talent in the world interprets the best work of one of the finest novelists in history;

or $13 to see a piece of furniture with legs spouting dreck written by a Hollywood hack likely off his head on drugs.

A difficult choice.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

News Roundup

British Diplomat Filmed With Two Russian Prostitutes. As soon as I saw this the first thing I thought was "The KGB have done it again!". Torquil Leamington-Feltch, 29, a British Diplomat was caught on video with a couple of hookers. Now there's a guy who's never read any John Le Carre. I mean, how could you be so dense as to be a British private school boy in Sverdlovsk and think two lovelies who invited you back to their hotel room for some no strings attached nookie were on the up and up? All he had to do was insist on renting a new hotel room and they'd have disappeared in ten seconds flat. Mind you, he probably thought that Russian women all have the hots for Brits whose accent is so upper class they sound like they have a bunch of plums in their mouth when they talk, and whose mothers still stitch their names on to the lining of their undergarments.

And in other news, in the UK, there are one million people who've not worked since 1997. Actually 1,000,646 if you count members of Parliament.