Postings are in chronological order, with the most recent entry at the top.
Yeah, that's about right...
Globalization has been in the news... And I've gotta say, this global competition for work majorly sucks. I know people who've lost jobs to the Philippines and India. How can someone who has to deal with the cost of living on the east coast, compete with someone in India or the Philippines, whose cost of living might be ten times less? We do more and ask for less from employers, because they threaten to farm out our work to go-getters in other countries. Isn't the free market grand? But hey, this rising tide is lifting the standard of living in economically challenged nations! Groovalicious! I'm all for stuff getting better in foreign parts what are in need of a better standard of living.
But back to me... So now that, like, half of my earnings go for the privilege of paying rent in the city (because, strangely, even though we earn less everything keeps getting more expensive...), I feel that the only option left to me is to move - to the worker's paradise of India! The rents are a fraction of what they are here and I'll pretend that I'm an Indian worker (it's all done by e-mail nowadays anyway, right?).
Only, Ume says we can't move to India because she's not keen on Bolliwood type productions and as much as she's a fan of Indian cuisine, it gives her gas. I don't mind it so much (the cuisine, not the gas), but Bolliwood movies do tend to be kinda flashy... So, on to my next bright idea...
Let's start moving parts of our high-cost of living urban centers to the mid-west! I know it's scary in there with all of those bible-thumpers and their anti-gay legislation, but the population numbers are also low, so it won't be long before we can out-vote 'em (let's not be too threatening at first, we'll tell them it's not the sinners we hate, just the sin... of voting to marginalize and condemn homosexuals).
It will be a worker's paradise! Where you can rent Bolliwood films if you choose, (and have as much gas as you want) but you can rent lots of other stuff too. We'll call it, the Bruleedom (yeah, that's kinda snappy). And no one will have to work after five o'clock (unless they're doing a flex-time thingy). Hell, this is a worker's paradise!, no one has to work after four-thirty! And no working on weekends! - okay, maybe a little paperwork on Saturday, but not on Sunday... unless you're getting overtime compensation. Hurrah! Workers of high cost of living type places, whose jobs are being out sourced to raise the standard of living in foreign parts, UNITE! And whatnot. I'll be waiting for you in Elyria, OH... or some such place.
Note: If I've offended anyone in the course of constructing this delusion (low-wage earners, Midwesterners, Indians, my mother, remorseless marketeers, Bolliwoodians, people with gas), I'm indeed, quite, very and truly sorry. And have a nice day!
"Bruleedom"... just kind of rings, don't it?
One in 10 U.S. tech jobs may move overseas-report by Eric Auchard (07.29.03): click here
Offshore Sourcing Tops Growth in Global IT-Gartner (07.15.03): click here
Report: IBM Execs See Need to Shift Jobs Overseas (07.22.03): click here
Interesting reports from the apparel industry... Redefining social responsibility by Peter Ford (06.13.03): click here
Okay, maybe globalization's tide isn't exactly rising all of the boats...: The Rigged Trade Game, a NYT Editorial (07.20.03): click here
Okay, maybe it really, really isn't... (this is a response to the article above) False Promises on Trade by Dean Baker and Mark Weisbrot: click here
Guatemala on Front Lines of Wal Mart Price War by Greg Brosnan: click here
What all impact is the recession and globalization having on American workers? Work Stress Taking Larger Financial Toll by Steve James (08.05.03):click here
I always love these articles where people are shocked, absolutely shocked, to hear that they have to treat their employees decently or it will effect them adversely...
"But in China they treat 'em terrible and get a lot of productivity. Our workers are spoiled whiners! I'll lay a couple more off this afternoon, that'll show 'em. I went to a cocktail party last night and Fred Johnson said that when he laid off sixteen mid-management workers and a couple thousand peasants, the stock market gave him a big pat on the back. Not only that, he's made a tremendous rights grab by making all of his creatives sign over full rights to their work, forever, in this and all universes. I need a rights grab! These creative people are bleeding me dry, even after I out sourced their damn jobs, I still have to pay to use their work? Not anymore, I'm putting a rights grab in our contracts too. I've got a bottom line to hold up here! We're hemorrhaging money like a hymaphiliac caught in a prickler bush. How am I going to make that six figure retirement bonus? I can't be babying these people, times are tough, belts will have to be tightened, sacrifices made, rights forfeited - that's how the market crumbles... Hey! What the...?! Miss Pennywrinkle! Miss Pennywrinkle! My massage chair has stopped working! I'll never be relaxed enough to make my personal best on the golf course tonight! Miss Pennywrinkle!"
Before I get mail from aggrieved management types: see note above.
Interesting discussion on Harvey Milk High School, a school in NYC for gay teens (The Connection, 07.06.03): click here
Al Gore says...
"The removal of Saddam was a positive accomplishment in its own right for which the president deserves credit, just as he deserves credit for removing the Taliban from power in Afghanistan," Gore said.
But, echoing other Democrats, Gore said the United States "suffered enormous collateral damage" because of the questionable intelligence the Bush administration used to justify an invasion of Iraq. And, he said, "the aftermath has been badly mishandled."
Saying the American people were mislead by "false impressions" before the war, Gore disputed Bush administration assertions that Iraq had connections to the Sept. 11 attacks and links to al Qaeda, that Baghdad was on the verge of developing nuclear weapons and that the international community would rally behind America once victory was achieved.
"Every single one of these impressions was just wrong," Gore said, adding, "Our invasion on Iraq had no effect on al Qaeda other than to boost their recruiting efforts."
Democrats have criticized Bush for failing to reignite a weak economy, for running an increasing budget deficit and for not containing guerrilla insurgency in Iraq.
Click here for full article
And here's a history lesson: Masters of Deceit by Isabel Hilton: click here
Ume's jealous. Ume's jealous and she's awful cute when she's jealous - especially because she says that she doesn't get jealous... it's beneath her and whatnot. Ume's jealous and when she's jealous she's more attentive as to remind me of what I'd be missing if she dumped my sorry ass. Ume's jealous and when she's jealous I get my way more and so I may just have to keep her jealous for a bit longer than is absolutely necessary. Ume's jealous of a woman in an exercise video and while this is a curious state of affairs, I'm going to milk it for all it's worth.
"You're watching that video again," she notes.
"Why yes darling Dewdrop, that's why I purchased it, to watch it."
"Funny, I thought you bought it to learn the exercises." She narrows her eyes.
"It's how you learn the exercises, by watching," I say.
"The only thing you're exercising is your imagination," she says.
"Not true," I say. "I'm watching these women demonstrate a complex muscle fitness regime. I need to pay close attention so that I don't injure myself while trying to get fit."
"You're watching scantily clad women roll around on the floor. Your paying close attention has very little to do with getting fit."
"Hey look! One of them has a pierced navel," I note as the woman in question bends her body in an impossible configuration.
"Why don't you just surf porn like a normal voyeur?"
"I wouldn't consider contributing to the demoralization and degradation of my (or any other) sex!" says I, shocked and whatnot.
"Uh huh. What was that web site you showed me last week? The Lesbain Librarian's Guide to Sex in the New Millenium or whatever."
"Oh, yeah, right, that... I was only interested in an acedemic fashion, you know?"
"I see, you're more interested in clothed straight women exercising together. Is this related to your Xena fixation in any way? As I recall there were clothed straight women exerting themselves, but never actually having sex in that too."
I look at her perplexed, "Neither of these women is blonde."
She rolls her eyes, then glances at the screen, "Neither of those women is real either, what the hell did she just do with her legs?"
"Fascinating, isn't it?" I ask.
"Aw Ume, it's just an exercise video. I'm just learning a few stretches and whatnot. These women mean nothing to me, honest. Besides, you'll benefit from the results."
"Brulee, you're sitting in front of the television eating popcorn and watching an excercise video. I'm worried that the spark has gone out of our relationship."
"Not so Dewdrop!" I exclaim. "We're sparking up a storm. I'm practically electrocuted just from looking at you."
"If you'd stop dragging your feet on the carpet, that wouldn't be such a problem."
"No kidding?" I ask.
"You learn something new every day. Like that," I gesture at the screen. "Who could imagine a woman could do something like that with no ropes or supports?"
"The authors of the Kama Sutra. Either you turn that video off and make nice with me, or you spend the night comforted by the glow of that infernal tube (she means the tv). I'm putting my foot down."
"I'm taking note, my beloved." I turn off the tube. "Have I mentioned lately how lovely your foot is?"
"No. A woman could forget that she's appreciated around here. Now come to bed and read with me," she insists.
I turn the tube back on and resume my seat.
"Did I forget to mention that I'm readng an exceptionally invigorationg account of the beady-eyed arborial gnitty-gnat's seasonal mating rituals?" she asks.
"Have I mentioned that the thought of gnitty-gnats, beady-eyed or otherwise, have never once troubled me with an erotic moment?" I respond.
"I didn't mean to imply that they should."
"What did you mean to imply, then?" I ask.
"That I was reading about sex and I thought about you," she explains.
"Me? Sex? Really? Why, whatever for?"
"It would seem that you come up when the thought arises," she shruggs. "I'm not entirely certain why that is, but it is."
"Curious," I note. "Perhaps we should have someone look into it? Could be a serious condition or something."
"Perhaps... Who do you suggest?"
After some reflection on the matter, I say, "I hear E.O. Wilson knows a lot about bugs."
She shakes her head. "I don't think he'd be appropriately equipped for the job."
"Jane Goodall's in town. She seems to know a good deal about the behaviors of things natural."
"Not quite what I had in mind," she shakes her head again.
"I could take a crack at it. I'm no expert, of course, but a fresh eye can sometimes bring valued insights and whatnot. Besides being uniquely unqualified, I'm a quick study and I'm also available immediately, without delay, poste haste - at no charge."
"You'll have to do then, won't you?" she smiles and leaves for the bedroom.
"Such is life," I say, deserting the couch and tube with all due speed.
This article is enough to bring out the caustious optimist for a spell - it's all about how gays are having all kinds of fabulous doings legal-wise this summer: click here
And when you're tired of the cautious optomist (all of that reserved cheer can be tiresome)... you can surf over to the National Gay and Lesbian Taskforce site and download the .pdf titled: Know Thy Enemy: Quotes About the Sodomy Ruling and the Same-Sex Marriage Backlash by Michelle Klemens and Sheri A. Lunn (07.28.03): click here and scroll down
Gay marriage has certainly been in the news this week. I keep hearing little snippets of "man on the street" interviews that go something like this, "Well, I have a best friend who's a lesbian, but I don't think she should be able to marry, that's just not... right."
And her friend thinks, what?
I don't know, but all of this reminds me of the friend who once asked me not to, you know, mention anything about being a lesbian around her daughter - because the kid's as smart as a tack and she might figure it out.
"You want me to closet myself for your daughter?" I just wanted a little clarification.
"Look, I don't want to talk to her about that stuff yet." She was getting defensive.
"... What stuff?" I was working on not getting offended.
If you could have heard the gears moving in my head they would have sounded like they'd encountered a monkey wrench. "Well, I wouldn't either - why don't you tell her something age appropriate, like, about love?"
And this is what George Bush had to say about gay marriage this week... click here
And then there's what the Pope said... click here
And then there's what the electorate is going to think...
Gay Is The New Black by Gary Younge (The Guardian, 06.16.03): click here
The thing about the Pope taking a moral stand against gay marriage that rings kinda, well, bizarrely (and not just 'cuz he's a guy in a dress...) - is, here's the same guy who was backing Cardinal Law all of the way, when he knew damn well what kind of crap Law had covered up here in the Boston area (namely that Law had been protecting child molesting priests for decades and even, you might say - if you were so inclined - enabling them - so far they know of 789, that's 789, cases). So exactly what moral high ground is the Pope announcing this dictate from? You ask me, he hasn't quite got the definition of deviant quite right. Unless you think that "god's messengers" should be able to do whatever the hell they feel like doing and everybody else should just shut up... Hey! Maybe the Pope is a neocon too! click here for info on news about this
If you needed further insight into the inner workings of fetid minds, here it is: Pentagon Plans Online Terror Bets by Paul Reynolds (07.27.03): click here
It's not like information like this could ever be used as a threat. No, of course not... I'm certain that there's absolutely no way that such a thing could ever be rigged to precipitate a particular outcome... Happily, this program has been scrapped by Congress. It was going to be enacted today, but they said, "Excuse me? Mr. Poindexter, are you sane?" And Mr. Poindexter excused himself and is now looking for a job.
If you want to uderstand how this scheme would have "worked", you can read Terrorism: There's No Futures in It by Joseph E. Stiglitz (07.30.03): click here
This and other bad ideas, brought to you by the Bush administration... U.S. Bartering Arms for Soldiers for Iraq War by Thalif Deen (07.31.03): click here