Snort Notes – May 2011
Excuse me, did I miss something? Did I miss the reports that peace has broken out in all troubled areas of the world, like the Middle East? Does the United States enjoy a record setting 1% unemployment rate? Has home foreclosure become an obsolete concept in this country? Are all of our children fully guaranteed a full education from preschool through college? Is every man, woman and child also able to get the medical care they need regardless of age, employment status, or condition? Has any of this come to pass? If not, then WTF should we care how a couple decides to raise their child?
People, we’ve got too many other problems we need to solve. Yes, this news item is a distraction, but does it deserve worldwide Internet attention? We should butt out and concentrate on solving the problems in our own lives.
Besides, this couple won’t be the first killed early one morning by an ungrateful child who couldn’t learn to cope living in a world that demands rigid standards of gender conformity, and they probably won’t be the last. Yes, it's a tough room today! Moving on...
GASOLINE PRICES DROP AS THE SUMMER SEASON BEGINS, REVERSING A TREND THAT GOES BACK AS FAR AS THE AVERAGE MOTORIST CAN REMEMBER
This was good news on the economic front, as more companies report they are hiring, and most people agree that we seem to be coming out of the recession. Most people, that is, except for the banks who are still foreclosing on homes like nobody’s business.
Still, unemployment and foreclosure didn’t affect everyone, but gasoline prices did affect everyone. Various influences - uprisings in the Middle East interrupted oil production, some fallout from the Gulf of Mexico oil spill last year, and good old American greed to name just a few - contributed to gasoline prices climbing above the $4/gallon mark. Consumers were outraged, Presidential poll numbers plummeted, and oil company profits soared.
Then, an amazing thing happened. Free market economics responded when people simply stopped buying gasoline. Wow, what a no-brainer! Consumers changed their driving habits, rethinking and replanning daily activities in order to get the most efficient use of their fuel. Many people (mercy!) even resorted to taking public transportation more often.
Gasoline prices, which have traditionally hit an annual high mark just before the Memorial Day holiday, went in the opposite direction. They dropped nearly 30 cents/gallon (by my reckoning) in the last few weeks. By all predictions, the prices should have risen well above $4/gallon, but thanks to the buying power of the average American consumer, economic disaster has been averted.
Congratulations, Mr. and Mrs. American! You really can influence market forces simply by saying, “No thanks!”
FORMER HOUSE SPEAKER AND DEMOCRAT PAIN-IN-THE-ASS NEWT GINGRICH ANNOUNCES HIS RUN FOR THE REPUBLICAN NOMINATION FOR PRESIDENT IN 2012
Oh, Newt, must you torture us with your extremist economic ideas, those wild off-the-cuff remarks that send liberal media icons like Keith Olbermann into a fit of hysterics, and make the leaders of your own party reach for the Alka-Seltzer? Let me put it another way. When, Newt, will you just run away and join the circus?
Sadly, the circus will have to do with one less clown, as Newt sets his sights on a larger big top: the White House. Poor fellow is so deluded that he has a chance to capture the nomination! He doesn’t realize that all the baggage he has accumulated over the years — blame for a government shutdown, multiple marriages, and lots of public miscues, to name a few — just bogs him down and stops him in his tracks.
More recently Gingrich expressed befuddlement that his credit bill of $50,000 at swanky jeweler Tiffany’s created such a big splash in the media. He tried to turn the controversy to his advantage by pointing out that the debt had been paid and he was debt free. He was hinting that, hey, if he could do it, then every American could get out of debt.
No, Newt, that wasn’t the point. Americans want a leader that is decisive in times of crisis, but they also desire someone to whom they can relate. Most Americans don’t have a revolving line of credit at Tiffany’s worth $50 let alone $50,000. Also, Newt, we have since learned that your line of credit was interest FREE!
Naturally, you were able to pay it off because you’ve managed to make a lucrative living as a large hemorrhoid to one or perhaps both of the major political parties in America. In the real world, Newt, people would have interest rates of 25% or higher to pay off the gaudy baubles that Tiffany’s sells.
This little irritation of yours became another major flameout for Newt because people can’t relate to his lifestyle. Maybe I’m wrong and we did make a big thing out of nothing, like the Internet-osphere did with the Toronto couple. Or perhaps Newt has joined the circus after all. So, let’s indulge him for the next year and a half. We need the laughs, and lord knows those in the Big Tent can always use an excuse to take another bromo.
(Thank you for reading. Happy summer everyone!)