Monday, December 29, 2008

We're 35 Today!

Thirty five years ago taday at St. Catrins' in Metry we wuz married up.

It's been great. I'm really looking forward to the next thirty five years. I'm lucky to have the best wife and girlfriend all in the same person.

Thanks to everyone who helped along the way.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Our goose is cooked!

It's not really cooked yet, but it will be.

One of the hoary Christmas clich
és is the Christmas Goose. Many of our traditional Christmas songs have the image of goose. I don't know where that tradition comes from. I have always supposed it was English, probably from the Dickens stories, but I don't really know.

This year I decided to actually roast a goose, I've never had one.

I still haven't eaten one, I will later today. I hope it comes out good. I hope I like it. More important I hope She likes it.

One of the interesting things about having a blog is seeing what people read. I put stuff out there and the things that get attention are always surprising. One surprise is that for the last several months my most popular post has been my Christmas post last year. I think someone linked to the picture, which I still really like.

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Where have all the people gone?

According to da papa in November;
4.5 percent fewer passengers left Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport on commercial domestic flights and 8.2 percent fewer arrived.
That seems to indicate more people left than came originally or returned. If traffic was merely down then the numbers should be nearly equal.

According to Airport Statistics for November 2008 318,453 passengers enplaned 304,819 passengers deplaned, a difference of 13,634.

Year to date 3,648,424 deplaned 3,654,010 enplaned a difference of 5586.

Where are they going?

I wonder where everybody went. These statistics show that until November more passengers arrived in New Orleans than left.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Weaning from the public teat

Yesterday Inspector General Robert Cerasoli released his report on the Administrative Fleet of the City of New Orleans. Our Mayor was later shown on TV saying he was attempting to wean the city from take home cars. I wonder how many fewer cars there are now compared to 6 years ago? It seems the records were lost in the flood.

Here's a similar situation.

A friend of mine used to run the cable TV system in a major southern city. They determined that employees were misusing their take home vehicles, creating additional liability, costing money and in some cases using company equipment, tools and material for their after work sidelines.

She held group meetings with everyone assigned a take home vehicle and told them the new policy. She took questions and explained the policy. But when one person said "I have a problem". She said "It's been nice working with you".

This car stuff has been going on for many years, far too long. It's improper and we don't have the money for it (in fact we never had it). It's time to end it and end it now.

This new found gradualism is odd for a man of action like our Mayor. He could simply order the changes to be made, like he's ordered so many other things.

He had no trouble arresting all of the workers at the Brake Tag stations. At the time he said ''It is very clear that this type of behavior has been going on for many, many years,''. He had no trouble laying off most of the city employees. “I wish I didn't have to do this. I wish we had the money, the resources to keep these people,” Nagin said. He had no trouble discontinuing sanitation services to the French Quarter. "This will eliminate the enhanced, Disney-like services, such as street sweeping and power washing in the Vieux Carre and downtown areas of the city," Mayor Ray Nagin said in a news conference. According to SDT that move will cost 75 people their jobs.

Let me tell you how to do it. It's very simple. Make a list of the 50 city employees you think should have One Car to take home and tell the other people to bring theirs back, tomorrow. He should start with his second one.

Cerasoil Strikes.

The new New Orleans Inspector General Robert Cerasoli has issued his first report.

Robert Cerasoli, Inspector General

The report with the catchy title "Interim Report on the Management of the Administrative Fleet" is a dry read, but every citizen, voter and taxpayer of New Orleans should read it.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Running buisness like a government

According to GM they need billions and billions of dollars to stay in business. Government seems willing to give it to them provided GM "restructures" and builds "greener cars".

I once owned a green car, a 1974 Chevy Vega station wagon.
It was a very nice color green.

I haven't bought an American made car since. Not that I disliked my Vega, I kind of liked it. I just never liked anything I've seen since well enough to buy it.

Unfortunately as far as I can tell no one actually makes much money selling "green" cars. Toyota claims to have made money on every hybrid since 2004. But however efficient they are at burning gasoline, I'm not sure hybrids are such green cars anyway. There are enormous economic and environmental costs embedded in the proper disposal or recycling of the batteries.

Recently GM employed around 266,000 people world wide including about 84,000 blue collar workers in North America. They have already announced their intention to layoff 13-15,ooo workers and close a number of plants.

Currently by most measures GM makes cars a well and anyone. They got into this trouble partly by making the high profit cars and SUV's people wanted. They didn't get where they are today by not investing in "green cars", which would have lost money on every sale for a while and cost a lot to develop. Right now even Toyota isn't selling many cars.

They also did fail to plan ahead by underfunding their retirement programs. They had Union help in that one, if the Unions were truly looking out for their members they would have negotiated fully funded, actuarially sound retirement programs, in lieu of higher wages and more benefits, short sighted management and union officials both failed in their responsibiities there.

It's pretty much the way Social Security works. Fortunately Social Security doesn't depend on selling cars to fund it, and it isn't in that great a shape.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Goodby Bettie Page

Bettie Page the all time queen of pinup passed away today. She was famous, and notorious for her nude and swimsuits glamor photography during the 50's. But the bondage, and domination pictures really set her apart and made her the object of a cult following.

She completely vanished from public for many years before resurfacing in the early 90's

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Don't Have a Cao, Man!

Within the echo chamber of the Intertube Joseph Cao has provided a little of comic relief, some celebration and a lot of discussion. It's probably time to leave him alone and let him see if he can figure out Washington. I'm really pulling for him.

Camelot Redux

I've had a feeling for some time that Obama and the Democratic Establishment has been cultivating the cult of Camelot II or Kennedy, dark.

It'll be confirmed if Michelle conducts a televised tour of the White House and shows up in public wearing a pill box hat.The symbolism is powerful, but the substance of the myth somewhat lacking.

I may be wrong but I recall JFK holding back on civil rights legislation to preserve the the unholy coalition of Liberals, Southern Segregationists and Northern Unionists, the latter two united by their discrimination against blacks. Invading Cuba, a mission that ended badly.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Holy Cao!

Dollar Bill Jefferson was defeated by a hurricane. The Veteran Congressman was defeated in a a general election delayed by hurricane Gustav. It just goes to show that even a wily corrupt politician can't mess with mother nature.

Jefferson had what seemed to be a foolproof strategy, let all of the viable African-American candidates defeat each other in the primary and ride Obama's coat tails to re-election. Gustav caused the election to be postponed making Dollar Bill the only guy on the ballot. Jefferson fatigue and motivated opposition unseated him.

Joseph Cao is an impressive guy and I wish him well, but he ought not plan on staying in Congress more than two years, unless he can pull a very large rabbit out of his hat.