Are Executive Bonuses in Bailed Out Companies Absurd?

30 01 2009

Many of the companies that received funds during the first wave of bailouts paid billions and billions of dollars in executive compensation. I think that is ABSURD. In any company being bailed out, I think the board and executive management should loose their absurd compensation. Thy should get reasonable compensation. But the underlying problem of course is that the laws are too loose and the managers of these companies acted freely to line their pockets with case and bilk investors with no fear of prison or loss of their windfalls. When a company is publically held I believe the board should be held to higher standards of accountability for their success or failure. In addition, there is obviously way too much collusion and not enough independant review of corporate books.

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Are the Lawyers Quitting the Blagojevich Impeachment Trial Absurd?

26 01 2009

Blag’s lawyers quit the impeachment proceedings citing they were not given enought time to present their case and they did not have subpoena power to call their own witnesses. Also mentioned was they were concerned that “due process” law had not been followed.

I find this ABSURD. This is not a criminal trial, it is an impeachment proceeding in the Illinois Senate. As such it is not subject to criminal court practices.

Governor Blagojevich was caught red handed apparently trying to sell the vacant Senate seat illegally, and eventually he will face criminal prosecution for the crime. Sure he might turn the tables on the prosecution but what the nation saw on TV was shocking. Blag uses vulgar language incessantly and it’s a true indication of his base character. He will receive due process but that is going to be in his criminal trial – this has nothing to do with the impeachment hearing on the State of Illinois Senate floor.

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Is it ABSURD to have “In God We Trust” on US Coins?

22 01 2009

Since 1938, all US coins have had the term “In God We Trust” inscribed on them, and many bills have had it as well. It that absurd? In my humble and professional opinion, this is Not Absurd. In 1956 it became law that the phrase was the official motto os the United States.

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Some athiests probably object and also those that want to make sure there is a pure separation of church and state. But the God concept itself is not in itself a violation of the “Establishment Clause” of the First Amendment prohibiting the government support (endorsement) of any organized religion.

What do YOU think? Please feel free to comment.





Is the Ban on the Pledge of Allegiance From Schools Absurd ?

21 01 2009

When I was a kid we used to recite the “Pledge of Allegiance” at the beginning of school every day. I think in High School we stopped… that was in the 1970’s. We had a policy in our school system that you did not actually have to say the pledge, but you did HAVE TO stand while the school was reciting the pledge.  In 2003, a California federal appeals court determined the Pledge of Allegiance was unconstitutional because it violated the separation of church and state with the phrase “One Nation under God”. That decision was the beginning of a ban on the pledge in all states. Is that decision ABSURD?

In my humble and professional opinion, I’m going to have to say I’m undecided. I see a great deal of the world’s problems being caused directly by religions and religious states. And America is the home of Freedom. Not freedom from everything, but certainly freedom from religious or race or age discrimination (in theory moving toward practice). To start the ban on the pledge I think is ABSURD NOT. Lets get this issue on the table and consider it.

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The difficult part for me is that the pledge could be changed to eliminate the God reference and then re-instated. I do see the appeal for that idea but in practical terms, that would cause a lot of trouble in the schools where the dogmatic religions groups would force their children to disobey.

So the one person jury at “This is the Law” is out to lunch on this one waiting for a new idea to pop.

Cheers everyone !!

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Are steroids laws ABSURD ???

20 01 2009

I just saw the movie Bigger, Stronger, Faster with my 9 year old daughter and 10 year old son. I explained everything to them as the movie went along. I was very impressed with the production.. low budget yes, but very thorough and lots of great interviews. Chris Bell is to be commended as are his brothers and his mom and dad for exposing the story. bigger-stronger-faster-cover

Both my kids are Black Belts in ATae Kwon Do and it took them 3 1/2 years of going to classes 3 times a week minimum. They went many weeks for 4 and sometimes 5 classes a week. They had to pass 16 exams with board breaking and technical forms on every one. They both have a chance to be “Masters under 21”. In Martial Arts that is a 4th degree Black Belt achieved before the 21st birthday… a rare and huge accomplishment. I want to make sure my kids know about the dangers of smoking, drinking, recreational drugs, and performance enhancing substances because I know first hand that knowledge is power. The best defense against addiction is to never start.

Arnold Schwarzenegger is a hero to many and he started injecting himself with illegal steroids at age 15. Now he has thousands of people in his own California prisons for doing the same thing. It’s a hard concept to understand – I don’t understand it. I think Arnold should be a lot more proactive in dealing with the issues. But steroids have not been proven to be associated with many of the side effect claims they have been tagged with. After seeing the film I have to say I believe the steroid laws are ABSURD. I do not want to take them and I don’t think my kids should until there is more scientific data and they are fully grown adults. I don’t want them to follow in Arnold’s needle drug footsteps, although many young people ultimately do and will continue to do so.

But the facts remain… steroids will be beter understood if they are prescribed by physicians legally. Many top athletes that have been on and off steroids for 2 or 3 decades still swear by them and also HGH Human Growth Hormone. I’d like to see more research into them and a change to the laws.

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Is it Absurd to Allow Smoking at Sports Events?

16 01 2009

China has a communist government that severely restricts freedom, but they can change laws very quickly. America has a Republic which fosters freedom, but we can’t change the law very quickly. Both government styles are very susceptible to manipulation by special interest groups who pay for votes and laws in their favor even when it has horrible effects to public health.
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That being said I question whether it was an ABSURD in China to ban smoking at the Olympic events. My opinion is that smoking ban was ABSURD NOT and I commend the communists for doing this to protect all our kids from images glorifying smoking. I know many wealthy members of the communist party profit personally from so called government owned cigarette factories.

Now should we ban smoking from US Sports events – I would hope so but I doubt if it would be easy. I am thinking of the President of a local junior football league who parades around during the games puffing away on a cigar in front of 400 kids. I was influenced by John Wayne in much the same way. I had respect for “The Duke” when I was a kid and I wanted to be just like him. This junior football president is putting an image in the minds of many of the kids that it’s OK to smoke to be just like the boss. Smokers get what they deserve, but they should not be allowed to expose their dirty addiction to children at sports events IMHO.





Is the Film Extraordinary Rendition Absurd ?

15 01 2009

I saw the 2007 film Extraordinary Rendition and Jake Gyllenhaal and Reese Witherspoon starred in the movie and they are still apparently (and coincidentally) active socially if such reports are to be believed. The movie was a fictional account, but it exposed the practice of legal kidnapping that the US CIA and State Department have been sometimes engaged in for decades. It is meant as a means of capturing and gleaning information from suspected terrorists, but since there is no due process, it’s a flawed system at best, and innocent people are sometimes victim to the practice as was the subject in this movie. The movie is loosely based on the alleged Maher Arar story and whether these are facts or fantasy, the premise is that suspects are sometimes apprehended illegally and flown to 3rd world countries where they can be tortured for information.

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Is the film Extraordinary Rendition absurd? In my humble and professional opinion, NO. The film is indeed based on a system that is real and is flawed, albeit somewhat necessary – at least in part. My opinion, do we need to apprehend suspected terrorists without due process in foreign countries without authority form that country? My answer, yes but only in rare instances.

Final word: there is an almost incredible Wiki on extraordinary rendition covering over 14,000 words.

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