Geeks and Greeds

Hey!  What’s up.

FeedBurner

If you’re a blogger, please point your browser t’ward FeedBurner.  I was looking for a way to include my blog entries automatically on my website.  Eventually, I found FeedBurner, which was acquired by Google.  But it has many features that will make your day easier and it looks like it can make your blogs more readable, feedable, ad-able, etc.

So I’ve been updating my website and blog this morning.  Yes, I’m still in bed.  Yes, I realize it’s almost noon.  Give me a break.  I may be supine but I’m being productive.

  • Got an RSS subscribe icon and link on the blog now.
  • Added some features to the FeedBurner feed so that people could share an entry.
  • I did NOT turn on the ability to notify folks by email when an entry is posted.  But I could.  Anyone interested in that?
  • Four most recent entries appear on my website automatically.
  • Using a Facebook badge on my website, which provides a sense of live-ness, mainly because it shows your Facebook status.

It’s a great tool, so check it out.  I wonder if I’ll get more traffic.  More traffic would be ego-satisfying.

The best things in life are free
But you can give them to the birds and bees

Microsoft laid off 5,000 people?  They made $4 billion — that’s $4,000,000,000 — in profit and then laid off 5,000 people.  $4 billion was less than they estimated.

I don’t get it.  Obviously, I’m not a good businessman, but … okay.  I’m a big fan of the Value City Department Store.  I  used to go there every two weeks or so.  I gave myself a Value City allowance after every paycheck.  Shoes, clothes, accessories.

One weekend I went to the Value City in Glen Burnie and there were Going Out of Business signs on the windows and the inside looked cleaned out.  Like it had been ransacked or looted.  There was hardly anything there.  So I’m like WTH!

Hoping that maybe it was just that store, when I got home I googled to try to find some announcement or information.  I found an article about the closures saying that all the stores would be closed except for the one in Annapolis.  Then I looked for an explanation.  Were they losing money or being hurt by competition?  The answer as stated by a CEO type was that it was a business decision.  The stores were still profitable but didn’t provide opportunity for growth.

In other words, yes we’re making good money but not enough money and it looks like we won’t be increasing the amount of money we make fast enough.

Enough for what?  I have no idea.  Stockholders?  Investors?  Greedy ass buggers?

Cold Logic

I think of myself as a rational or logical person, but I don’t — and I don’t want to — see the world in the cold, calculating way that many people do, apparently.

You know, like, you’ll say something about appreciating having the support of a large family and they may respond with:

“Ah, yes.  The larger family unit is associated with lower socioeconomic classes and stems from agrarian societies and economies where, in essence, large families increased the work force for the family farm or village.  Also, the genetic and hormonal bio-chemistry reinforces familial and social bonds, which along with neurotransmitters reinforce a general sense of well-being from the…”

You know the type:

“Hey, look at that.  That clouds looks kind of like a rabbit and we were just talking about rabbits.  And a Volkswagon rabbit just drove by.  Weird.”

“No doubt the discussion of rabbits is influencing your perception such that you’re imagining the appearance of and have increased awareness of anything remotely resembling the genus…”

“Would you shut the ….”

Hey, this is kind of fun.  I’m enjoying annoying myself like this.  But do you know what I mean?  That detached, external mindset.

Laguna Beach Anecdote

Anyway, one consequence that I would score in the negative column is unmitigated greed and/or materialism.  I mean, if you see the world in terms of ones and zeros or dollar signs, then it makes sense to maximize profits in any way legal, if not necessarily ethical.  But my theory is that maximizing profits at all costs ultimately creates these bubbles that explode in our faces.  That’s what’s happening now.  Why people you and I know (or are) have recently lost their jobs, had their pay cut, or have been forced to take unpaid leave.

Unbridled Capitalism, the pure unfettered breed, has no concern for the financial ecosystem of a region, nation, world.

When I was in Laguna Beach years ago with a friend and had Leika with me, we were looking for dog friendly beaches.  So I said, let’s go to a pet store and ask someone.  Good idea, right?  So first we tried to find a pet store.  Asked around until someone at a book store told us that there used to be a pet store in town.  Then PetsSmart moved in and crushed the local pet store, which shut down.  Then PetSmart decided they weren’t making enough money and shut down their own store, leaving Laguna Beach pet store-less.

Nice.

What was my point?

I can’t remember what my point was.  There’s been some things in the news about financial abuses and egregious wasting of our taxpayer bailout money.

Is there a way to lobby our new president to make sure that any bailout money comes with strings?  And that previous bailout money is accounted for and anyone who wastes it buying $1,500 trash cans and $75,000 rugs is held accountable?

Do we have an advocate?

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