Charlie's Books

Charlie's Books
Buon Giorno, Amici!

Our motto ...

Leave the (political) party. Take the cannoli.

"It always seems impossible until it's done." Nelson Mandela

Right now 6 Stella crime novels are available on Kindle for just $.99 ... Eddie's World has been reprinted and is also available from Stark House Press (Gat Books).

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Gotti Jr. IV ...Afghanistan ... CEO’s … Beating dead horses … Anchor of the week ... DOC says ...


Gotti Jr. IV ... well, perhaps those so anxious to prosecute the “alleged” terrorists in a federal criminal court should think twice about the possible outcomes. There’s nothing quite like slam-dunk cases … obviously our fantasy connections are glad to see the government's case (made by giving “deals” to convicted and other “alleged” murderers) has fallen apart once again.

Was it justice? Well, if you believe in the system …

Afghanistan ... it is “vital” ... “necessary” ... “urgent” ... but not enough to send the 40,000 requested. We don’t think the war in Afghanistan is worth spit and that between the two wars and the countless innocent lives being extinguished and/or maimed on all sides of the equation (because imagine having bombs rain down on our heads daily), enough is enough. We think this was a bad political decision the President will regret and one he won’t be able to speechify his way out of (whether it is in 3 years or 7). We turn once again to Bob Herbert’s column (the 2nd one in a few weeks) in the Times yesterday regarding how maybe Obama needs to be strong about this particular issue and back away from what politicians say to get elected. Some liberals feel enthralled at Obama’s sticking to his guns on this one. Have they suddenly grown accustomed to nation building and/or defending corrupt regimes?

CEO’s ... last post, that wild and crazy DOC went after Knucksline for our feeling that unions remain necessary (not a necessary evil—but necessary so long as we maintain a capitalist economy and the government big business runs for its own purposes). What we continue to find so hard to understand from those on the right is how they can ignore (and promote) the corporate greed and absurd salaries/bonuses of CEO’s while getting their panties bunched up over the comparative miniscule benefits a union offers the actual workers behind the absurd salaries/bonuses (i.e., the ones who actually do the work).

Let’s take a look see (According to Forbes ... their rank/name/company and $’s in MILLIONS):

1 Lawrence J Ellison, Oracle = $192.92
2 Frederic M Poses, Trane = $127.10
3 Aubrey K McClendon, Chesapeake Energy = $116.89
4 Angelo R Mozilo, Countrywide Financial = $102.84
5 Howard D Schultz, Starbucks = $98.60 (a Canarsie boy)
6 Nabeel Gareeb, MEMC Electronic Mats = $79.56
7 Daniel P Amo,s Aflac = $75.16
8 Lloyd C Blankfein, Goldman Sachs Group = $73.72
9 Richard D Fairbank, Capital One Financial = $73.17
10 Bob R Simpson, XTO Energy = $72.27

Can anyone really be worth $192.2 MILLION dollars a year? Can anyone actually work that hard? Assuming he works 10 hours a day 6 days a week and has 4 weeks off a year (we know he's got it much better than that), isn’t that about $66,666.00 an hour? And isn't that a bit over the top? Or how about the genius worth $73.72 MILLION a year (at Goldman Sachs)--the one who claimed he's doing "God's work"? Isn’t that CEO responsible for bankrupting his company? Not to worry, he wasn't laid off ...

I’ll tell you what ... given the choice between any of the above and retiring after 25 years of union work at 80% of my salary, I’ll take one of the 10 above.

And remember, amici, our genius government (both Republicans and Democrats) didn’t bail out any of us. They bailed out some of the clowns above.

Beating dead horses ... While some so-called “liberals” find nothing better to do than point out Sarah Palin’s many foibles (or wingnuts in general), they have no problem ignoring the fact their chosen leader has yet to accomplish anything of substance. They’re so offended at their choice for Prez catching grief they’ve come to take issue with redundant Saturday Night Live parodies of the anointed one.

“Enough, already!” they decry. “Come up with something new!”

Ah, redundancy ... I’ve often been told my constant haranguing of our President is stale material ... that I’m often like the drunk at a party who keeps repeating the same old story when all the guy I’m boring to death wants to do is get the attention of the cute redhead standing in the corner (or something like that).

We find that interesting when all we read from the same group of “liberals” is the same old beating of the dead horses on the extreme right (as if it is Sarah Palin’s fault President Obama hasn’t been able to get his veto proof Congress to do a single thing for him outside of extending the Bush bailouts). We think her constant appearance on liberal blogs serves her purpose more than theirs: she’s caught a bunch of big fish who keep their eye on the wrong ball (her) while their guy ignores their existence. Like last night, for instance, when President Obama ignored the left once again and stepped up a pointless war for the sake of what exactly?

Why we sometimes refer to him as Bush-light.

Should you confront these “liberals” with FACTS, what happens is some hysterical ranting, name calling and, well ...

The conservative blogs I visit are a bit more refined and although I find disagreement there too (sometimes heated), they haven’t been nearly as intolerant as many on the left (but that is not meant as a generalization—it refers to those I visit only). The one exception I’ve found on the left is Barry Eisler’s blog (The Heart of the Matter) where the author himself guides the discussions; doing his best to point out when someone is getting a bit short or sarcastic and then suggesting a more tolerant tone. From what I can tell, it works.

It seems to me bloggers on the left are in a precarious position these days. Surely they aren’t happy with the centrist road Obama has taken and their ideological preference precludes them from dealing with his record (or lack thereof). They're answer is to attack the right, because who wants to hear from those on the right after having to deal with George Bush’s incompetence for 8 long years? It is a somewhat valid point ... up to a point.

Still, not all the Obama criticism is coming from the right. Saturday Night Live isn’t the only liberal barometer eliciting displeasure with the President. The Huffington Post has been at it too. So has Bill Maher, and, of course, wild and crazy Michael Moore and countless others.

And for those of us who refuse to run blind into the night (poking fun at the irrelevant extremists on the right), we do a double take at the so-called liberals who refuse to hold their guy accountable for anything. What we see is a never-ending finger pointing charade that facilitates the inaction of government and further enhances the status quo. They’re mantra is IOKIYAR (It’s Okay If You’re A Republican) ... juvenile nonsense that they can rally behind?

What these “liberals” continue to ignore is the following:

Carrie Prejean (another favorite of liberal bloggers to make fun of) has the same stance on Gay Marriage as their President (and their party of choice).

The now infamous private security firm, Blackwater: President Obama increased their budget over what Bush had allotted.

Iraq (“the wrong war at the wrong time in the wrong place?”) ... well, we’re still there.

Afghanistan (see above).

Fiscal Oversight of the markets ... more than a year after Wall Street's very successful extortion we’re still waiting for it (the oversight).

Closing down Guantanamo ... you guessed it ... still up and running.

Health Reform ... we’re still waiting for that, too, but nobody is kidding themselves about what we (the taxpayers) will get.

Big Business ... has done fine and dandy by this President (bailouts) while the national unemployment rate seeks a new high each passing month.

Whether the Republicans would do an even worse job seems to us at Knucksline a moot issue; the Democrats have control of both houses and the White House RIGHT NOW. They are the ones who can accomplish change (for lack of a better word), yet nothing of substance has changed. In some instances, we see it getting worse (Afghanistan).

The reason this President needs to get on his horse is obvious. Midterm elections may well make it more difficult to pass legislation. If things get bad enough, those same elections may strip him of his majority. Then what, Obama becomes Jimmy Carter II?

Usually it is the squeaky wheel that gets greased. Liberal bloggers poking fun at irrelevant figures on the right, while it may give them their daily dose of anti-Republican cheerleading jollies, it does nothing for the causes they supposedly support (like all those listed above President Obama has yet to address). Knucksline suggests those liberals fixated on Bush-Palin-Beck bashing try using some of their leverage on their president of choice rather than making it easier for him (Obama) to ignore them.

Speaking of SNL, here’s one we missed ...

The Anchor of the week ... oy-vey, vey iz mir ... if you bet both ends of Knucks’ reverse with the Y-E-T-S, Yets, Yets, Yets and his beloved New York State Buffalo Bills last week, you lost (BIG)… because both teams won outright. This week do yourselves a favor and start betting with the DOC (who has traded up for a Lamboughini—don’t you love it when the Irish buy Eye-talian?). We like the YETS over our BILLS in TORONTO (in a dome of all places on a Thursday night) ... because everybody knows ... when you have home field advantage like we should have in Buffalo in December ... only management from hell would make sure you play that game against a division rival in a heated dome in another focking country!

Oy-vey, vey iz mir ...


And the DOC says ...Okay, Chaz,

I realize that the horse is dead, but it's the only horse we have and it's crucial for the well-being of the world that we beat it. Let's make a strategy here. We'll beat the dead horse for 18 months more and then no matter what happens we will stop beating it. That will also allow time for you (the Generalissimo) to kick off your presidential campaign.

I saw an interesting fact the other day. In most president's cabinets there are between 30-50% appointees from the private sector. The democrats tend to have the lower numbers and the republicans tend to have the higher numbers. Can you guess how many cabinet members the Bamster has appointed from the private sector ... 8%. He has surrounded himself with academics and community organizers. No wonder nothing ever gets done! These are not people who respond very well to, "And have that up and running by Friday, or else." They don't "do" things. They discuss things. If they are real over-achievers they might write a paper. If the kids can't read by June, they give them diplomas anyway and plan to re-address the issue in September with a new batch.

We are so screwed!

I understand your outrage with the CEO payscales. Larry Ellison gets $192M and yet Bob Simpson only gets $72M. As the Bamster says let's spread the wealth. We'll level the playing field and pay them both $132M. You happy now?

Just for the record, Goombah, it is spelled L-a-m-b-o-r-g-h-i-n-i and it is a pimp car and I wouldn't be caught dead driving one. However, if your Lock of the Week streak continues, I could see a Bugatti in my driveway for Christmas.

Sorry, I didn't mean to offend your liberal weenie friends... I meant Winter Festival.

Your PC pal,