Welcome to Buster's Blog

Irregular commentary on whatever's on my mind -- politics, sports, current events, and life in general. After twenty years of writing business and community newsletters, fifteen years of fantasy baseball newsletters, and two years of email "columns", this is, I suppose, the inevitable result: the awful conceit that someone might actually care to read what I have to say. Posts may be added often, rarely, or never again. As always, my mood and motivation are unpredictable.

Buster Gammons

Saturday, December 3, 2016

If He Matches Obama, The "Savior" Is Gonna Be Exhausted

Time for a bit of perspective.

Late in 2008, both Chrysler and General Motors announced that they were unable to meet their obligations and were looking at imminent failure.  Dubya arranged a temporary lifeline, but left the heavy lifting of a permanent solution to the incoming Barack Obama, who indeed pushed through a large-scale bailout which saved both companies and 1.2 million jobs in the process (both in direct employees and those of hundreds of supplier companies).

Many conservatives hated it and still do, but would they really have preferred the liquidation of Chrysler and GM?  No.  Obama succeeded and it was ultimately worth it.  They hate that too.

The not-yet-in-office Tribble-Top is crowing about spending $7 million of other people's money to "save" 800 jobs in Indiana.  "It was so easy!"

Good thing it's easy, because if he's going to match Obama's accomplishment, he'll need to do a Carrier-size deal once a week, every week, for the next 29 years.  And since that's impossible, he'll have to pick up the pace.  The micro-managing Sherbert-colored Savior is gonna be exhausted!

Can My Own American Job Be "Saved"?

As you may know, your humble correspondent, Buster Gammons, is a small business owner.  You can't get any smaller -- I'm the one and only employee of my auto aftermarket products company.  It's minuscule, but it's a job.

In keeping with recent business trends, as the owner I conducted a thorough review of the company from top to bottom, and I concluded that my operating costs were too high.  My only alternative is to close up shop and relocate myself to Mexico, where my cost of labor will be less and my cost of benefits will be zero.

It made me sad when I had to announce this to myself, and as a loyal employee I was shocked and bitterly disappointed by my news to myself.  But business is business, and what are ya gonna do?

But then I heard that Agent Orange, the-thing-that-will-be-president, is going around the country picking winners and saving jobs.  I heard he made Indiana give Carrier Corp. $7 million so they'd keep a plant open in Indianapolis, instead of moving it to Mexico.

I'm encouraged and I'd like him to know that for $7 million, my job can be saved too!  When do I get my money?  

Will Cheeto Jesus Save The Victoria's Secret Models?

The Limited is a once thriving retailer of women's clothing.  It has around 250 stores.  Including its subsidiaries like Victoria's Secret, Henri Bendel and Lane Bryant, it operates over 2000 retail stores around the country.  It's headquarters is in the Columbus exurb of New Albany, where it employs 248 people.

The company is burdened by excessive debt and just announced that unless a buyer could be found, they will soon close their HQ and layoff all of the 248 who work there.  Such a closure would surely mean the end of The Limited retail locations, and would not bode well for its subsidiaries either.

Given his "help" in saving some jobs at a Carrier plant in Indiana, I fully expect Hair Furor, the president-elect, to ride to the rescue to extract a ransom payment from Ohio Gov. Kasich (wouldn't you love to be a fly on the wall for that little chat?), or maybe to twist the arms of  New Albany city officials for some local tax abatements.

Because if The Limited stores fail, the next domino could be Victoria's Secret, and you know that the Tiny-Fingered Tit Judge loves him some lingerie models!

"The annual televised Victoria's Secret Fashion Show is a national treasure, it gets tremendous ratings, and I never miss it.  As a matter of fact, it'll be on in just two days.  I'm so excited already!  Unbelievable!  For that reason, Limited Brands and Victoria's Secret and all those hot girls in their underwear must be saved, and only I can do it." 

Friday, December 2, 2016

Slimy Carrier Deal Is Nothing New

A few months ago, Carrier, the big refrigeration company, said they were closing an Indiana plant and moving it all -- 2100 jobs -- to Mexico.  Which sucked.

But yesterday, Cheeto Jesus staged a yuge event to announce that he had miraculously turned the air conditioner condensation into wine and convinced Carrier to stay in Indiana after all.

Well, sort of.

Carrier is part of United Technologies Corp., a big multinational with $56 billion in 2015 revenues and $4 billion in profits.  Carrier said the move to Mexico would save the company $65 million, or 1.6% of last year's profit. The total savings -- wages, benefits, etc. -- would be $31,000 per employee, some of which would of course need to be spent on the new Mexican workforce.

It's disgusting how little it takes for some companies to throw people under the bus.  For a savings of just 0.12% of revenue, or 1.6% of profit, Carrier/UTC was perfectly willing to discard 2100 American workers for some marginally cheaper Mexican ones.

So the Tangerine Toad just twisted the arm of Indiana Governor Mike Pence (yes, he's still the guv) and convinced him to throw $7 million in tax abatements at Carrier and -- voila! -- the plant will remain open and 800 people will continue to work there.  Which is nice.  But Carrier is still moving 1300 jobs to Mexico.  Hmmm.

Mr. Pixie Fingers, acting as Pence's proxy ("Mike, we're gonna do this, OK?  Believe me, we're gonna look good!"), effectively shook down the State of Indiana for $7 million to preserve 40% of the jobs at one plant, then held a press conference on his way out the door to declare himself a hero, saying "This is so easy!"

Slow down, Yam Face.  Did the Indiana legislature agree to this?  Don't they get a say?  If this is such a wonderful idea, why didn't they do it before?  Why didn't their genius governor think of it before?

There's nothing new here -- greedy corporations, feckless politicians, deals cut with other people's money.  It's all slimy business as usual.  What's unusual is the president-elect's desire to insert himself into the swamp for little more than a PR/photo-op moment.  And the lily-livered media is happy to help him.  Ratings!

Meanwhile, hundreds of other avaricious companies are busy writing their ransom notes and hoping that the Marmalade Man-Baby shows up to help them extort some money from their states and cities.  Like he said, it's so easy.  Stick 'em up!  

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Your Daily Donald WTF

Well, I guess I'm back to this, although we've escalated above simple WTF's.  What's the next Def-Con after WTF?  In any event, shit's gettin' real.  Our douchebag-elect has a Twitter account but still has no filters, no impulse control, and no clue. Recent examples:

  • Reiterated his vow to "tear up" the multi-national Iran nuclear arms prevention deal.  World leaders and experts immediately condemned his reckless and belligerent threat.  C.I.A. chief John Brennan said it would be "disastrous" and the "height of folly."  WTF Donald?
  • All alone in Dump Tower and feeling all spunky with Islamophobic 20-20 hindsight, he late-night tweeted that Abdul Artan, the OSU attacker, "should not have been in our country."  He was a refugee here legally with his mother and six siblings.  How would he be kept out, Donnie?  "A complete and total ban on all Muslims!  Extreme vetting!"  Wonderful.  WTF Donald?  
  • Tweeted that he will be "completely out" of his numerous business interests, "in total," because it is "visually important."  (Visually?)  He has previously said he'd put his business in a "blind trust" run by his kids (which would not be even come close to a blind trust).  He has not promised to divest himself, and he still has not released his tax returns.  His conflicts of interests are yuge, obvious, and potentially unconstitutional.  WTF Donald? 
  • Even though he hasn't yet begun, he told Newt Gingrich that "This is really a bigger job than I thought."  Well, duh!  What kind of moron underestimates the most critically important job in the entire friggin' world?  You know who.  WTF Donald? 

Revised Pledge

"I pledge no allegiance to the flag
of the Divided States of America,
and to the split Republic
for which it does not stand,
two nations, under Trump, torn apart,
with bigotry and injustice for all."

Romney Ought To Know

As an infamous Tweet-aholic might put it, "Sad."

I refer to the sight of Mitt Romney debasing himself, bowing and scraping before the tiny fingered tyrant.

Not long ago, Romney called Trump "a phony, a fraud."  And Mitt ought to know, because he's obviously one himself.

Mitt looks a little ill.  Must be the crow he's eating.