Dark Shorties

Hey folks, I made it to the 16th posting every day either here or on my professional site without any shorties! Let’s see if I can make it a single shorties month.

Attack of the Zero Tolerance Policy: Man fired for picking up a gun he found at work and turning it in to police, despite the fact that the police said he’d done the right thing. Sounds like something I wrote once.

I hope nobody is surprised: The most popular times for American birthdays is just about 9 months after winter.

Don’t forget the War on Terror: Where are the missing terrorists? Why do the FBI have to keep making them up? And when did Rolling Stone become a go-to source for serious investigative journalism?? Back in the day it was a music rag!

Context is Everything: GM says it’s evaluating the effectiveness of its $10,000,000 worth of Facebook ads, just days before Facebook’s $105,000,000,000 Initial Public Offering (BTW folks, IPOs are a sucker’s game unless you’re a genuine insider).

Whatever Became of Iceland?: Turns out they had a peaceful revolution, debt writedowns, indictment of bankers, and a host of other reforms we can learn from.

Seemed like a stupid idea to me: FTC fines Sketchers $40,000,000 for advertising shoes as having magic weight loss properties. They always looked like a good way to lose my balance and fall to me.

Amazing what you can do when you are driven by a goal: Harvard MBA pays down $90,000 in student loan debt — in 7 months! Spoilers, it involved selling stuff he didn’t need, taking in boarders, frugality, and taking a second job.

Most balanced thing I’ve seen written on the subject: Internships. It’s sad that a college’s job has to include teaching “job readiness” skills like professional behavior.

And finally: fingernails.

Shorties Night 3D

Ok, I’m all tabbed up so let’s get rolling!

Not sure what to think: Ron Paul wants to make sure kids aren’t subjected to mandatory mental health screenings. On one hand I don’t want to see kids needlessly medicated. On the other hand, I know people who really could have and should have been diagnosed with treatable mental health disorders as kids!

Side Effect: Women are suing cops for tricking them into long term relationships with their undercover alter-egos. Oops.

Never Thought I’d Link Glenn Greenwald: But he’s right about the detention provisions of the National Defense Authorization Act. It’s there in black and white, no matter how people spin it.

Cat Herding: How Occupy Portland outsmarted the cops (without necessarily planning it that way).

Good Grief: 10 things you didn’t know about “A Charlie Brown Christmas.”

I hope they didn’t spend a lot of money on that research: “The more a person drinks the more likely they are to have unprotected sex, according to research.”

This looks good: Dark Chocolate Macadamia Bark with Sea Salt.

Remember this when your Christmas bills arrive: Minimum payments will eat you alive.

Let’s see if that’s more than talk: Most Americans think we need a third party.

Turns out the Military is a way out of a bad neighborhood in more ways than one: Military schools smack around local schools, particularly when it comes to poor and minority kids. Now if only there weren’t the occupational hazard of being shot at!

You’ve seen my musings: Now here’s Anderson Cooper on traveling.

Turning Japanese: 68% of Japanese cars sold in the U.S. were made here in America, in 29 plants that employ 50,000 people. For reference, “American” car manufacturer GM has roughly 68,000 employees in the United States.

About Time!: 6 Fannie/Freddie execs charged with fraud. They might actually go to prison. There’s another big mortgage fraud suit here in Nevada.

Dim Bulb: One idiot thinks those curly light bulbs are so bad, she says she’s giving incandescent bulbs as Christmas presents. Don’t let her kids anywhere near her car with a carton of eggs.

How does that work?: As condition of a plea bargain, a man had to agree to give up a home he didn’t own and never did own.

And Finally: A boy chokes on a meatball in the school cafeteria. The sad part is that rather than make sure all the staff know CPR, they will probably take meatballs off the school menu.


Yesterday, we learned that Ford was planning to create 1200 new jobs in the state of Michigan. GM and Chrysler also announced job plans.

This morning I learned the truth: they planned to create those new jobs if they got certain tax breaks.

Sure is a nice state ya got here, Miz Granholm. Sure would be a shame if somethin should happen to it.”

Seeing as Ford’s profit in just the last three months was $1.7 billion ($1700 million if you prefer), why do they deserve such a tax break at the expense of the everyday people who pay taxes? Don’t you suppose the tax break given to the large and newly profitable again auto manufacturers could do a lot towards fixing Michigan’s abysmal roads and Detroit’s crumbling infrastructure? Perhaps it would be easier to balance Michigan’s budget if they didn’t have to play tax games with their biggest taxpayers.

Of course every state and many municipalities have to play this game, and corporations are more than happy to play us off one another, threatening to pick up their factories and stores and go somewhere else if they don’t get their way. And since Congress is a wholly owned subsidiary of Big Business, we can’t expect them to level the playing field for us. All we can do is sit back and hope our state and local politicians don’t screw us too hard in the name of “economic development” that may never materialize.

In Closing: How will they make enough money without bubbles to inflate??; college degrees by county; growth, accidents, and the poisoning of the Gulf of Mexico; the ACLU finally caught up to me on this one; I agree; how about we stop doing things we aren’t proud of instead?; Paul is Dead; and a novel way to get crime tips.

Stupid Republican Tricks

Seriously, there has been so much stupid that I don’t know where to start.

I could start close to home with Senate candidate Sue Lowden, who thinks we should be able to barter with our doctors and pay with, for example, chickens!

I could go down the road a bit to Arizona’s new racial profiling illegal immigration law, which “requires state and local police to determine the status of people if there is ‘reasonable suspicion’ that they are illegal immigrants and to arrest people who are unable to provide documentation proving they are in the country legally.” By the way, “reasonable suspicion” means the cop doesn’t like you and/or you’re brown. I don’t think most people appreciate that most people don’t carry proof of citizenship in their pockets — NO a Driver’s License is NOT proof of citizenship! Never has been, shouldn’t ever be.

But wait, maybe that’s what Senator McCain was getting at when he said that illegal immigrants are deliberately causing car accidents! I certainly can’t think of any rational reason that anybody — particularly someone here illegally — would cause accidents. Insurance fraud?? What a dangerous way to make money!

It’s OK though, because Representative Bilbray says a cop can tell if somebody is illegal just by looking at their clothes! So tell me, what exactly is the difference between the shirt I buy at Target and the shirt that an illegal immigrant buys at Target? I don’t want to accidentally get the wrong one. And certainly you’d better not dress up for any ethnic festivals in Arizona without sticking your birth certificate or naturalization papers in your pocket!

Then again I could go to the horse’s mouth — Washington D.C. — and examine the party of NO!’s “Just scrap it and maybe start over” strategy on almost every initiative. Oh, and let’s not forget that it is at least partly thanks to the Republicans that the newly passed health insurance reform bill still allows rescission and still has no way to control wild increases in premiums.

Not that the Democrats are innocent, but certainly no wonder people are “fed up with political incivility.” Anybody who wants to be re-elected had better pay attention to public sentiment now.

In Closing: Freezing a 787 for science; look, putting twins in different homerooms to see which one learns to read better doesn’t prove that reading skills are 82% genetic, just that the teacher and classroom aren’t 100% to blame/praise for the results!; Homelessness, it’s not just for addicts and the mentally ill anymore (sadly, for some people, it’s what’s for dinner); a scathing truth about “successfully” parenting a crowd; high schools preparing kids for college without a thought of preparing them for work; if the Fed is going to print money, do you suppose they could send some my way?; congrats to GM on paying back the TARP money to the Feds; green Navy vessels on the ocean blue; the various watch lists and no-fly lists aren’t just an annoyance, they divert attention from real threats; on long term unemployment; oh waah, companies are having a hard time raising prices; let’s see how far the rotten banking practices extend; and school lunches have officially become a matter of national security.