Friday, July 03, 2015

The Gift That Keeps On Giving

Do you hate someone who is always right? If so, you hate the Smartfella. I can’t help it. There actually was an occasion where I made a mistake. I had come to the conclusion that I had made a mistake but, as it turned out, I had not made a mistake. My mistake was thinking I had made a mistake.

Boy, am I glad that first paragraph is done with because I was getting confused.

 

Back on 2/19/13 I published a Blog Posting (lagniappe link below) that almost dared to say I was feeling sorry for BP because they had become the Federal Government’s Gift That Keeps on Giving.

 

Another “Final” (there’s that word again) Agreement has been reached for BP to pay another $18,700,000,000. Quoting ABC News...

“Trying to close the books on the worst offshore oil spill in U.S. history, BP agreed Thursday to provide billions of dollars in new money to five Gulf Coast states in a deal the company said would bring its full obligations to an estimated $53.8 billion.”

 

Do you see the ominous word for BP? It’s “trying”. Trying means it is not Final (there’s that word again).

 

While we all know that ABC never gives us bad information, the Fella often quotes more than one source to prove his point. My local newspaper tells me...

“BP will pay up to $18.7 billion in penalties to the U.S. government and five states to resolve nearly all claims from its deadly Gulf of Mexico oil spill five years ago in the largest corporate settlement in U.S. history.”

 

Do you see the ominous words for BP? It’s “nearly all”. Nearly All means it is not Final (there’s that word again).

 

I’d be willing to bet you dollars to donuts that, when they saw the Omnious Words above, umpteen lawyers throughout The Fruited Plain texted each other from their Palatial BP Mansions... “Yahoo! The Ominous Words are in there!”

 

Hey, BP, count your bleesings! The Exxon Valdez ran aground on March 24, 1989 & their Litigation Headaches show no signs of coming to an end. At least you are flirting with Finality.

 

Would I kid u?

Smartfella

 

Lagniappe: The link to my prior blog posting about BP... http://forii.blogspot.com/2013/02/the-mother-of-all-revenue-enhancements.html

 

Lagniappe #2: If you are a long time reader of my Foolishness, you knew this was coming... $53.8B is not as small as $53.8B looks like it is. This is 53.8 Thousand Million Dollars & a Million is a Thousand Thousands. That’s a lot of Palatial Mansions.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

This May Be My Shortest Blog Posting Yet

I must have been watching the wrong TV Channels because I recently saw a newspaper describe the Baltimore Riots as, "a week of mostly peaceful protests".

That’s like saying that the Terrorists that shot up that beach in Tunisia yesterday were really Peace Loving because they only killed 38 people when they could have killed a lot more if they had really tried.

Would I kid u?

Smarfella

Lagniappe: You like to travel? Here’s a bunch of tempting deals for you... http://www.tripadvisor.com/SmartDeals-g293753-Tunisia-Hotel-Deals.html

This Just Might Be My Last Blog Posting About Our National Obsession With Smart Phones & Smart Pads

 

Did I just hear you say to yourself, “Why is this the last one”? 

It’s simple. There is nothing else to be said because this cartoonist has captured the full essence of our Obsessive Silliness…

clip_image001

Do you think that deep down the Late Steve Jobs is thinking that he made a mistake & maybe he should have spent his time inventing the next iteration of Jiffy Pop?

 

Would I kid u?

Smartfella

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Thursday, June 25, 2015

I’ve Talked About Our Sliding Down The Slippery Slope Before But It’s Gotten Worse

Did I just hear you say, “How much worse is it?”...

My Dear Readers, we appear to be Spinning Out of Control as we Slide Down the Slippery Slope.

First Example...

The Federal Government’s H-2A program allows U.S. employers to bring foreign nationals into the United States to fill temporary agricultural jobs. A U.S. employer must file a Form I-129 Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker, on a prospective worker’s behalf. This filing requires a $325 Filing Fee per worker.

However, starting on June 9, a computer failure has prevented the U.S. from issuing thousands of temporary and immigrant visas, leaving more than 1,000 agricultural workers stranded at the border just as the summer harvest gets under way.

The workers are overdue to start harvesting berries and other crops on U.S. farms. It is estimated that California agriculture, already stressed by drought, is losing $500,000 to $1 million for each day of delay.

It’s the old Damned If You Do & Damned If You Don’t issue...

Ø If the farmers try & abide by the law & use the H-2A Program, the Federal Government cannot give them the workers they need.

Ø If they turn to using Illegal Workers, the Federal Government fines & penalizes them.

I would be willing to bet dollars to donuts that the part of the Federal Government’s computer program that collects the $325 Filing Fee is humming along like a well oiled machine.

Second Example...

Someone (China?) has hacked into our Federal Government’s Office of Personnel Management (OPM) data base & the Hackers (aka: Bad Guys) now have a humongous amount of personal information about every federal employee.

A former Federal Employee was quoted as saying, “I can’t think about the national security implications of a foreign government knowing every single federal employee, where they work, where they live, all of their significant data. Think about what that information can do in the hands of people who want to do us harm.”

I used the quote from a former Federal Employee because current Federal Employees operate under the Modus Operandi that if they down play & deny really bad news it will never become really bad news.

The Associated Press reported “two people briefed on the investigation disclosed Friday that as many as 14 million current and former civilian U.S. Government employee have had their information exposed to hackers, a far higher figure than the 4 million the Administration initially disclosed.”

Under a worst-case scenario outlined by Theweek.com, the information obtained by hackers could be used to derail trains (although they seem to be derailing just fine all by themselves without outside help), disrupt air traffic control systems, explode chemical plants and gas pipelines and compromise electric grids, causing large-scale blackouts across the country. Who needs missiles when a laptop and the right software can be just as effective?

While the U.S. Government should have seen this coming, clearly it was unprepared for such an invasion of privacy.

My Dear Readers, the above short paragraph is a Smoking Gun...

If we were able to see it coming, why were we unprepared?

Because so many in Congress read my Blog Postings, I have long had a Federal Monitor assigned to look over my shoulder as I peck out what I peck out. His name is Felix. He just told me to tell you that everything will be alright.

Would Felix kid u?

Smartfella

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Wednesday, June 24, 2015

I No Longer Understand Words

How many times has the Deadline for signing a Nuclear Agreement with Iran been passed by as if the Deadline did not exist?

I have tried to find out how many Deadlines have been ignored up until this point so I could impress you with how well I can research my facts before I publish my Foolishness but I have failed. I’ll just have to wing it.

Suffice it to say (now there is awkward phraseology) there have been several Deadlines that have been brushed aside as if they were a swinging door standing along the path of our headlong pursuit of the next Deadline.

Boy, am I glad I got past that complicated introduction to the real reason for this Foolishness...Or Is It?. Remembering the Subject of this posting I will now address why, I No Longer Understand Words.

One of the words I no longer understand is “Final”. The next “Final” deadline for our Nuclear Agreement with Iran is June 30.

We are now being told that there is a distinct possibility that negotiations will continue after the “Final” Agreement has been finally agreed to & finally signed.

Does this make any sense?

Would I kid u?

OK I will kid u...

What’s next? Will we see the Final buzzer go off at the end of the Final game of the NBA Championship &, after the players wearing the NBA World Championship Baseball Caps have been jumping around for 5 minutes, will we hear the PA System come to life with the following shocking announcement...

All of you down there please stop jumping around. The Maintenance Crew is hereby instructed to sweep up all that confetti. The Balloon Popping Crew please start popping all those balloons. We have decided that the Final Score is not the Final Score & we will play on until we have a new Final Score.

OK, I admit that the above PS System Announcement is complete silliness & such a thing will never happen...Or will it never?

Would I kid u?

Smartfella

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Friday, June 19, 2015

Lord Knows I Try To Be Politically Correct But Sometimes It Is Really Hard

I looked up the word “Mister” in my dictionary & here is what I found... “A conventional title of respect for a man, prefixed to the name and to certain official designations (usually written as the abbreviation Mr.)”.

To The Fella the Key Word in this definition is, “Respect”. In the world of politically correct the word “Mister” is alive & well but they have forgotten the “Respect” part.

A couple of days ago a young man shot & killed 9 people while they were praying & studying in their church. I will not go into further details about these murders because you know all about it.

What has caught my eye is the article in my newspaper this morning. The murderer was called “Mister” 17 times.

I think this calling awful people “Mister” is new to news reporting. We used to insert their Middle Names to make sure we were talking about the real evil person who had done real evil things & not your nice next door neighbor who regularly sends over samples of his cooking...

  • Lee Harvey Oswald (Kennedy)

  • John Wilkes Booth (Lincoln)

  • Jared Lee Loughner (Giffords)

  • John Wayne Gacy (A whole bunch of people)

  • Mark Davis Chapman (Lennon)

  • James Earl Ray (King)

Oftentimes (now there’s an old word), when they were running out of ink or space our newspapers would leave out their first two names & just call the evil person by their Last Name (Oswald, Booth, Loughner, Gacy, Chapman, Ray) but they certainly did not waste ink or space & call him “Mister”.

OK I’m going to throw caution to the wind & peck out how I really feel about this murderer. I think he is a worm.

As soon as I pecked out the word “worm” my computer’s Auto Correct popped up & directed me to call this worm, “Mr. Worm” & then went right ahead & told me I should also have said “Mr. Murderer”.

OK, I give up. I can see that I’m not going to win this battle either.

Would I kid u?

Smartfella

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Monday, June 15, 2015

You Don't Just Put It In Your Mug...Now You Can Put It On Your Mug

On February 21st & 23rd of this year I published 2 Blog Postings that made light of the fact that...

What Used To Be Bad For Us Is Now Good For Us

2/21... http://forii.blogspot.com/2015/02/after-you-die-you-may-not-be-dead.html

2/23... http://forii.blogspot.com/2015/02/regarding-my-last-blog-here-is.html

One of the Used To Be Bad For Us Things was Coffee. Now we are not simply being told that it is OK to drink coffee but some "experts" are directing us to go out of our way to consume coffee & Drink 4 to 5 Cups a Day!

What was it that was bad for us when coffee was bad for us? It was Caffeine. We have done so much of an about face on Caffeine that it is now going where no ingredient has gone before.

Caffeinated Shave Cream…

Although they don’t expect the shaving cream to replace your morning cuppa, we now know that the body can absorb caffeine through skin and hair follicles.

Stan Ades a co-founder of the Caffeine Insertion Company has said, “The best part about caffeine in our products is its ability to act as an effective vasoconstrictor that helps reduce the appearance of redness”.

The company says their shaving cream utilizes the many benefits of naturally-derived caffeine to help liven up your morning shave routine. It will give you an exceptional shave, help reduce the appearance of redness, and keep your skin looking and feeling healthy all day. It may not replace your morning coffee, but it will give a little extra kick to your morning routine.

This Used To Be Bad For Us but is Now Good For Us Phenomena has me all excited. Bacon is the best example. If bacon is now good for us, can the Cannoli be far behind?

Would I kid u?

Smartfella

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Thursday, June 11, 2015

NYC Parking Spots...Always There When You Need Them

If you live in New York City & you want to always have a parking spot available to you, you need to become a cop on a TV Cop Show. In every episode when the cops arrive at the scene of the crime, there is a Pull Straight In Parking Spot waiting for them.

Although this is unrealistic, I’m glad they do find parking easy because otherwise we would have a whole bunch of very boring Cop Shows as we watched our heroes drive around the block over & over before they can spring into action.

These shows are not called Reality Shows because the truth is all parking spaces in NYC are always parked in. They are so precious that once a spot is found many people never move their cars again. That’s why the subway was invented. It’s New York’s version of Park & Ride.

Since no spots are available, people are forced to Double Park. To keep from getting a ticket for double parking, New Yorker’s hire full time Car Movers to come live with them. When they do go out & about, the Car Mover sits in the car &, when the meter maid approaches, they move the car around & around the block until the meter maid goes to get a donut.

Because they now have to provide Health Insurance to the Car Movers, many New Yorker’s are getting inventive. They have started disguising their double-parked cars as trees or bushes so the meter maids will not see them.

Yea, I know I got carried away with this one but is it any sillier than TV Cop Show Cops always pulling straight in?

Would I kid u?

Smartfella

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