Do You want fries with that.

Now here is a novel concept, your order on time, and it is right.  If your next fast-food order at the drive-through has the right food in the right bag, you may have  something surprising to thank: the bad economy.  In the past six months, Carl’s Jr.’s 478 locations in Southern California in particular have been able to recruit crew members more fluent in English, and thus are able to process drive-through orders more accurately.

“It’s a no-brainer.  Hiring people who are fluent in English has always been something we’ve wanted to do.  Now we can.”  That’s because, with layoffs on the rise – particularly in hard-hit Southern California – the chain can be more selective in hiring.

The unemployment rate in California hit 7.7% in August vs. the national rate of 6.1% – the most recent month from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. “When times are tough, people are willing to take jobs for which they’re over-qualified.”

Pay Attention Mr. Bush, you might learn something here.

Mexico agreed Monday to deport Cubans who sneak illegally through Mexican territory to reach the U.S., a step toward cutting off an increasingly violent and heavily used human trafficking route.  The agreement, signed by Cuban Foreign Minister Felipe Perez Roque and Mexican Foreign Secretary Patricia Espinosa, takes effect in one month. It also criticizes U.S. policy that generally allows Cubans who reach U.S. territory to stay, while turning back most caught at sea.

Cuban migrants in recent years have increasingly headed for Mexico – often to the coast near Cancun – then overland to Texas because it has become so hard to dodge the U.S. Coast Guard and reach Florida to qualify for U.S. residency.  The U.S. Border Patrol is reporting that some 42 incursions into U.S. territory since last October by THE MEXICAN ARMY.  Evidently a lot of drug cartels are experiencing problems getting their merchandise over the border, so they get their Mexican buddies in the Army to make probes into U.S. soil, thus pulling the Border Patrol away from the smuggling entry points.

Next Time Take The Train

Phoenix – The price of an all-day bus or light rail pass in the city could go from $2.50 to $4.50 under a proposal being considered by transit officials. The regional transit board, struggling with falling tax revenue and rising fuel prices, will consider the hike early next year.  That is a pretty hefty hike right there wouldn’t you say?  You ever notice they never say, “uh, how about giving us a quarter extra and if that don’t work out, we will be back?”

Nah, just go for the big bucks and get it over with.

I note that a lot of travel agencies are now offering fares around the world to wonderful, exotic locations and the post the price of the trip.  And then they add, Plus Taxes and Fuel Charges.  Which kind of irritates me, how were these people planning on us getting there in the first place?  You have to use some kind of fuel to transport folks.  Why isn’t that just included in the price of the trip.

Bad news coming out of Anchorage, Alaska.  No check in the mail.

The state’s oil wealth savings account lost nearly $10 billion in a year. Most of the state’s residents receive an annual check from this fund, based on its net income averaged over five years. The fund peaked at $40.4 billion last October and now is about $30 billion.  Looks like the governor will have to go back to shopping at Target.

Even More Alaska news, and no, this is not concerning Caribou Barbie so check your hormones at the door boys.

stevensSen. Ted Stevens, R-Alaska, left, leaves court on Tuesday after his corruption conviction with his lawyer, Brendan Sullivan. Stevens is now calling for a probe into the federal lawyers who prosecuted him.

I guess this comes under the “You did it to me, so I am gonna do it to you, fairness doctrine in the 49th state.”

Wait … It gets better.

A juror who vanished during Alaska Senators’ corruption trial told the judge Monday she lied about her father dying and flew to California to see horse races.

U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan ordered Marian Hinnant, identified as juror No. 4, to return to court to explain why she disappeared during jury deliberations. Hinnant brought a stack of handwritten notes with her to the court Monday along with public defender A.J. Kramer, and told the judge that her father hadn’t died and she was at the Breeders’ Cup in Arcadia, Calif.

She apologized for lying, and then started a long rambling story about horses, which included references to horse breeding, the Breeders’ Cup, drugs, President Ford’s son Steven and her condo in Florida being bugged.  At that point, the judge said, “I am thoroughly convinced you would not have been able to continue to deliberate,” Sullivan interrupted.

“Can I have a case of my own?” Hinnant asked. Sullivan referred her to Kramer and the federal public defender’s office, and excused her from his courtroom.

Outside the courthouse, Hinnant refused to answer questions about whether she was on medication or had been hospitalized. When asked what she thought about Stevens’ case, she said: “He didn’t do anything any of the other congressmen and senators did, so they’re all guilty.”

She then loaded up in her Ford Fiesta that she claims is powered by Oatmeal, and headed south to her home in the lower 48 that has tree’s that hum, and all the children glow in the dark.

Gonna go way out on the limb folks and say that Obammer walks away with the election today.  I could be wrong, but I just don’t feel like I am.  Why don’t war heroes win elections anymore?  Excepting George Bush Sr. it has been 48 years since a war hero won the presidency.  And it isn’t like there has been a big shortage or wars and conflicts the past 48 years, so that cannot be the reason.

So what is the problem?

Again, so many questions and so little time.  Oh well, time to gear up for 2012, I am thinking Rosie O’Donnell or Elizabeth Hassleback from The View … whadya think?


Wake Up America …

Hurricane Ike is barreling down on the Texas coast, should be coming ashore there sometime today or possibly tomorrow, and I suppose we will be in for some rain.  Yesterday I was somewhat amused when they reported that “the hurricane is now passing over the western edge of Cuba and residents were being encouraged to evacuate.”

Evacuate?  To where?

(It is after all an ISLAND in the middle of the Caribbean dummies.)

NBC is reporting the dictator of Korea (Is that right?) hasn’t been seen in awhile, and there is speculation that he is ill.  The web is abuzz too.  Amid swirling rumors that North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Il suffered a recent stroke, sources close to the diminutive madman revealed that his collapse occurred shortly after he learned of GOP presidential nominee John McCain’s selection of a running mate.  Kim’s Stroke Related to McCain Choice

Our Reno, Nevada, correspondent sent me this yesterday:

“No matter how this comes out people are going to get what they deserve, nobody seems to understand that this is just bullsh**, a sideshow, and a poor one at that. I have no vote for either of these puppets.”


He also included:  LEBANON, Va. – What’s the difference between the presidential campaign before and after the national political conventions? Lipstick. The colorful cosmetic has become a political buzzword, thanks to Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin’s joke in her acceptance speech that lipstick is the only thing that separates a hockey mom like her from a pit bull.

Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama told an audience Tuesday that GOP presidential nominee John McCain says he’ll change Washington, but he’s just like President Bush.  “You can put lipstick on a pig,” he said to an outbreak of laughter, shouts and raucous applause from his audience, clearly drawing a connection to Palin’s joke even if it’s not what Obama meant. “It’s still a pig. You can wrap an old fish in a piece of paper called change. It’s still going to stink after eight years.”

We seem to have forgotten that individual acts have moral consequences.  If they don’t, then we lose our human dignity, which precisely is our capacity and obligation to make moral judgments.  This is why current opinion seems to think we must vindicate our values and our dignity by washing our laundry in public every now and then. From a personal standpoint, this has been one of the most undignified campaigns in American Political History, on either side of the fence.

Face it, this garbage is national fare almost every night on any of the channels.

Such are the times.

Much like my friend Art, I often find all of this interesting, sometimes repulsive, ugly, and just plain unbelievable.  It is no small wonder why when I inquire of someone with this simple question

“Who Are You Gonna Vote For?” …

I most often get …

Nobody, I am sick of this **** .

What we ought to do is come up with a totally new process, that will determine the character of a presidential nominee and see if he has what it takes.  All this constant lame blather about experience, who has what for the job, who can do this with that, is tiring and redundant.  It appears that we can no longer accept that a horse is dead in this country, we have to keep diggin’ it up day after day, to just insure it still smells bad.

Now we are being fed a diet of “old lame jokes or catch phases.”

If I read one more sappy interview about Palin or opinion on this McSame choice, Obammer …  One more side bar on who has no experience, I am going to lose my lunch.  With the current state of the world, economy, colonization of this country by foreign nationals, we surely have bigger fish to fry.

Wake Up And Smell The Coffee.

We don’t need to hear about mixed up, confused Soccer Moms, who kill and grill their own grub.  Catchy notes on Designer Eyeglasses and smart dressers.  More soundbites on misdirected virtually unknown politicians that are passionate individuals, considered poor choices made by seasoned veterans of the process, or that perhaps the choice was not a good choice by the lobbyists who run Karl Roves’, uh, McSame’s campaign.

I propose a new test for the Office of President.  Let us give them the quintessence of political hot-bed experience.  This elusive thing that they all seem to thirst for.

Put him-her (as the case may be)  in a Volksagen with bumper stickers that read, “Fight Terrorism with Love … National Pride … Rosanne Barr for Vice Pres … Same Sex Marriages … I love the ACLU .. Gun Control Now … Bring me your Daughters … Jesse Jackson for President … Free OJ … Bill O’Riely’s my cousin … Rush Is Wrong … Hug A Californian Today” and then have him-her drive from one end of Alabama or Mississippi, to the other side and give the Highway Patrol in both states the day off.

If they (he or she as the case may be) makes it through either of the states … Then I say, they have the right stuff to be our Prez.


Related: Wake Up America

In Deep Poo-Poo

Bosom Buddies

Bosom Buddies

Eight years ago today, President Bush delivered his acceptance speech at the 2000 Republican National Convention. We had this pledge from Bush:

“So when I put my hand on the Bible, I will swear to not only uphold the laws of our land, I will swear to uphold the honor and dignity of the office to which I have been elected, so help me God.”

In the speech, Bush also said, “A generation shaped by Vietnam must remember the lessons of Vietnam: When America uses force in the world, the cause must be just, the goal must be clear, and the victory must be overwhelming.”

(The picture on the right is of Bush shaking hands with McCain at the conclusion of the 2000 RNC Convention.)

Not long ago we wrote about an ongoing effort in San Francisco to name a sewer-water treatment facility after Mr. Bush.  It now appears that the folks living in the City on the Bay, have changed their minds and no longer want to do this.

The Presidential Memorial Commission of San Francisco had just recently submitted enough signatures to city election officials “hoping to place on the ballot an initiative that would rechristen the Oceanside Water Pollution Control Plant as the George W. Bush Sewage Plant.”

But on CBC radio last Friday, one of the commission’s founders, Brian McConnell, said the group ran in to some unexpected opposition to changing the name:

McCONNELL: What we didn’t expect was that most of the opposition was coming from people who didn’t want to name anything. They just wanted to forget about the past eight years and move on or they felt that this is a facility that does something really quite useful and it would be inappropriate to put his name on it.

Kind of sad state of affairs.

When you get to the point where people are defending the sewage plant, that’s a sign that things have not gone so well.

Lincoln Diaz-Balart (R-FL) is opposing a decision by the Bush administration to allow a New England Little League team to visit Cuba this week, arguing such trips run counter to the U.S. policy of isolating the Cuban government. Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) fired back at Diaz-Balart: “He should pick on someone his own size.”

Planned layoffs at U.S. companies jumped 26 percent from June to July, which is an indication of “further deterioration in the labor market.” In July, planned layoffs totaled 103,312, compared to 81,755 in June. “From January to July, planned layoffs totaled 579,260, up 33 percent from the same period a year ago.”

Neither President Bush nor Congress “has acted to appoint members to a commission intended to boost U.S. energy independence in the three years since Congress enacted a law establishing the panel.” During that time, “oil prices have more than doubled to $125 per barrel from $60, and the price of a gallon of gasoline has increased from about $2.25 to nearly $4.”

White House shuts off Blackberry access following reports of Chinese spying.

Last week, Sen. Sam Brownback (R-KS) expressed outrage that the Chinese government could “listen to anybody and everybody and their communications” during the Olympics. The White House is apparently also fearful of being spied on, as CBS News reports that Bush’s staff “have been told to leave their BlackBerries at home

Now this is somewhat amusing, “an administration that hides behind the Patriot Act to spy on it’s own citizens” is now complaining because someone else is doing the very same thing to them?

What a bunch of bozos.