More Opinion by The Springboard

THE UPRISING OF THE AMERICAN PARTY "Clearly the voters are engaged right now, at least for sure on the republican side, and what they have concluded is that the republican party has not done their job. Thus, Donald Trump gets their vote."

Monday, March 29, 2010

OF COURSE TIGER SHOULD RETURN TO GOLF


The big question rolling around, now that Tiger Woods will apparently play in the Masters, is should he? I ask why shouldn't he play? No one is going to deny that the recent infidelities of Tiger Woods were horrible. His reputation is forever going to be haunted by his sexual escapades. But at the end of the day he is a golfer, and that is all.

I say, let the cameras roll, let the commentators comment, let the tabloids dig for and spill all the bean they want to. To Tiger I say ignore it all and just swing the club. Swing the club and pay no attention whatsoever to what people think. The news teams, the fans, the booing audience members (and you know they'll show up). Put on the same blinders you put on when you were with all those women. Drown it all out, like you drowned out the fact that you were a married man. Brush it all off.

Just golf. Swing the club and be oblivious.

He won't get the big endorsement bucks. His paycheck will be severely shorter than he's usually accustomed to. But so what? The balls will fall where they may, his game is his game, and I'm absolutely certain that he'll play as well as he did before, despite it all. I don't have to agree with his lifestyle to conclude it has nothing to do with the sport he plays.

And so I say yes, he should play in the Masters.


MORE OPINION BY SPRINGBOARD:

Sunday, March 28, 2010

THREATENING OUR ELECTED LEADERS SOLVES NOTHING


The American people are angry. After all the polls clearly indicated that the majority of the American people did not want this health care reform bill that ultimately was passed, it passed anyway. The president and the democrats in the Congress went forward clearly knowing that at least 52% of the population opposed the bill.

But is it appropriate to direct that anger at our elected leaders through death threats? Through violence? Should we decide that beating down our elected leaders is the answer? Of course not. We've got to get it together. We need to direct our anger appropriately and effectively. This kind of reaction will only make us look like crybaby buffoons.

Look, we said it when Bush was determined to be our president after all the debacle over chads and whatever else—it is what it is. So let's move on and get on with the business of the people and stop bickering about what is. We need to take our own advice. The deal is done, it stinks to high heaven, we all know that all too well, but here is where are, and now what we need to do is to focus on what we do next to appropriately and effectively make things better tomorrow.

The fact is that whatever we think about our current elected leaders, ultimately I think it is an absolutely fair statement to say that our system of government works. The Congress and the President of the United States got this one terribly wrong. Of that there is no debating. This big fucking deal, as the vice presdent so eloquently put it, is going to cost us far more than just an arm and a leg to be sure. We're in for one hell of a debt dealing ride that could make a swingset do loop the loops like a roller coaster. The dems clearly did this vote with their fingers crammed deep in their ears.

We cannot fairly measure our system of government based on this one bill, even if it's a big one. Even if it's a disastrous one. Literally sending our elected leaders to the guillotine may sound enticing, but...

We can vote. That's what we can do. And we'll have just such an opportunity coming around this November to send a loud and clear message that the American people are not happy with what's gone down. This is our proper discourse. Waving fists, raising bats, or sending idle threats against our elected officials when things don't go our way is not the answer. It's frustrating. At times it can be downright maddening. But to strongarm the process? Even if they did it?

How can we expect our elected officials to make the right choices and vote accordingly if they have to do so in fear? Fear only serves to taint and corrupt the system even further. Let our politicians fear their jobs when they get it wrong or ignore the people. Not their lives.

MORE OPINION ON THE HEALTH CARE BILL:

ALL WE NEED IS ANOTHER BIG "EFFING" DEAL
DESPITE IT ALL, HEALTH CARE BILL PASSES USA Made Clothing by All American Clothing

Friday, March 26, 2010

JESSE JAMES DOES A TIGER WOODS

Can anybody say it with me? Here we go again. A very short while ago Tiger Woods was all over the headlines about his many escapades with women who seemed to come out the woodwork, and now we've got Jesse James in the same boat, with the numbers continuing to grow. Whether or not Jesse James can reach Tiger Wood's level numbers is yet to be seen, but I don't think I'd personally be all that surprised if that were to fast become the case.

In one sense it's hard to believe these guys would ever want to cheat on the women they've had the pleasure of knowing so well. Elin Nordegren is absolutely beautiful. And so is Sandra Bullock. Besides the fact that Bullock also happens to be cute as a button to boot.

But fame and money do funny things. So does power. So does the idea that one is privelaged, or gifted in a particular way. These guys have all of these things in their corner which only serve to make temptation a bit greater. They are desirables too. And men, like women, love to be wanted.

Let's not forget that men love sex as well, and with such availability, it would seem almost too difficult to resist. Like a kid in a candy store. Or, perhaps consider this. If you came into a store every single day and saw that the register was wide open and no one was looking, no one was there to catch you, and you said no many, many times...

Wouldn't the open register prove too tempting? I mean, if you knew for a fact that you could take the money out of it and not get caught, wouldn't it become too difficult to resist?

I'm not condoning the actions of either of these guys. It's deplorable to say the least. But still, I think I can understand, at least to a point, how the mistake is made.

READ MORE BY SPRINGBOARD:

TOYOTA AND TIGER HAVE A LOT IN COMMON
ALL WE NEED IS ANOTHER BIG "EFFING" DEAL

Thursday, March 25, 2010

HOW DO I MAKE FACEBOOK CHAT EMOTICONS


I think it's at least fairly safe to say that most everyone who uses the Internet also happens to at least have a profile on Facebook. It's become a very popular place for all sorts of personality types, and is used by many to get out ideas and to network. Mainly it's just a great place to keep up with the folks in our lives who we happen to be closest to.

For now, it's the "in" thing to do.

One of the things we like to do on Facebook is chat, and because of that, emoticons, as they are commonly called, have become a very big part of the english language. Emoticons of all sorts have even made their way into every day writing—much to the chagrin of many, mind you.

But how do you make them? The emoticons, that is? Here's a great article I found on HubPages which shows all of the variations. There's probably many more than you thought there were.


USA Made Clothing by All American Clothing

HOW TO MAKE FACEBOOK CHAT EMOTICONS

Facebook Chat Emoticons

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

SIRIUS XM MUST FOLLOW THROUGH ON REVERSE STOCK SPLIT



For the second time, Sirius XM has received notice from Nasdaq that their stock could be delisted if it does not remain above $1 per share for 30 consecutive days. In a way I find myself puzzled, considering that the company's board has already approved a reverse stock split to hike the price up. The company says it will do what they feel is best for the shareholders. My great wonder is what good delisting would do for the shareholders. Part of the thought is that if, for example, the company were to suddenly decide it may be better positioned as a private company—this is conjecture entirely, the company has not spoken a word about such a thing—then presumably they would have to issue a tender offer to current shareholders. In my own case, considering my cost basis, which I will not disclose, I'd lose an enormous amount of money on my position. I have a suspicion that a great many others would stand to be in the same boat. Being traded on the OTCBB isn't something I think would bode well for the stock either.

Sure. It's an investment. There are no guarantees. My cost basis is not the concern of the board. Nor is the cost basis of any other investor. I could have averaged down. Perhaps I even should have averaged down. The prices certainly are far below my cost basis at this current price point. And obviously the fact that I have not sold my shares, despite all that's happened with this stock over the years, indicates that I believe the stock is undervalued. In my mind it's obvious to me that the company has a future. That's why I've kept my money put up to this point.

So, what's in my best interest, as much as I don't like reverse stock splits, I think it is to do exactly that. Reverse split the shares and put the share price around $5. It's not to say that it solves the issues the company has that has managed to drag the share price down and keep it down. But it would create value, and it would keep the stock trading on the Nasdaq. And let's face it. Even though a reverse stock split may meet with some bad press because it's considered a sign of weakness within the company, but so would a delisting from the Nasdaq do that.

My own thoughts are that the current price is part of the reason the stock is having trouble. Investors and traders don't like stocks that trade at such low prices. It signals to them that there are deep problems, and it invariably increases the risk to the investor's investment.

But there are positives here. The company had some help, and some interest, from Liberty Media a while back, and I think it has used the money well. Car sales have increased, and this has helped to allow them a little bit more room for growing their subscriber base. They've expanded their business a bit outside just cars. And the company was finally able to show a profit in the 4th quarter after a year of losses. These are all good things. These are things that should have allowed the stock to trade above $1 for longer than it did after it released earnings.

I think, as painful as it is, a reverse stock split is the best answer shareholders can get right now. If the company is solid, and I think that it is, then the reverse stock split can simply be considered to be priced into the stock, and shouldn't be a negative factor in the future of the company.


MORE BY SPRINGBOARD:

SPRINGBOARD ON THE 5 O'CLOCK NEWS
Religion Is Not Necessary

MORE ON SIRIUS XM:

Serious Satellite Radio is Sirius' Starmate5
Serious Satellite Radio is Sirius' Starmate 5 - Part 2

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Tuesday, March 9, 2010

STEP OUTTA THE CAR, COPPER


It seems odd, sometimes, that when someone pulls out a gun, there's not a cop for miles around to put a stop to what might just become a very bad situation. Yet, speed up to 57 miles per hour in a 55 mile per hour zone, and there they are. The cops. Right behind you in a flash with blue and red lights flashing and sirens blaring.


I'm not saying that cops aren't necessarily doing their jobs. I'm not even making light of the fact that cops have a very difficult job. The job of dealing with people in any capacity is difficult—just ask anyone who works in retail or some other customer service capacity. Go talk to a waitress.


But there is this underyling thought that cops are less and less there to protect and serve us. There seems to be something else that is the motivator, here. I think it's money. That's what it comes down to is money. You see, real criminals do not pay fines. For that you need to catch speeders. For that you need to find someone driving along without a seat belt on.


How many times do we drive by a squad car just sitting on a sidestreet between intersections? How many times do we see a cop sitting alongside the highway? Why aren't they driving around? Why aren't they getting out of their cars and walking into a McDonald's to make sure kids are behaving appropriately when their parents aren't around? Or looking for someone in a store acting suspiciously?


Crime is a product of opportunity. If cops made their presense more visible everywhere, I'm inclined to believe there would be less crime. When a cop may potentially be in a grocery store aisle at any given moment, one may think twice about stuffing that item in their coat. Or pulling out a gun. Or even kissing and half undressing their girlfriend in a fast food restaurant.


We need to have police out and about and on the beat. On the streets, sidewalks, in the stores and restaurants. We need them policing for criminals. Real criminals. Not just policing for minor offenses for which there are fines attached.

Springboard recommended reading:

Immorality (at McDonald's)!?
Do You See What I See?



USA Made Clothing by All American Clothing

Friday, March 5, 2010

EAT YOUR PORK SLOWLY PROVIDES A GOOD LAUGH



Rummaging around the Internet can be a bit of a humdinger of a good time of sorts, because getting around, you never really quite know what you're going to find out here. There's just a ton of crazy videos, whacky pictures, and sometimes just downright plain silly stuff. People love to share a lot of silly stuff. If you ask me, TV's got nothing on this Internet thing. Not even close.

I'm sure my wife would argue with me about that. I spend far more time on the Internet than she does, and she's a bit of a couch potato when it comes to the boob tube (sorry babe, I love you!). A lot of people tell me I spend far too much time out here on the old information superhighway, and so it's quite possible I may have formulated a tiny bit of bias. Hell, I've been here so long I even still call it the information superhighway. For Pete's sake I still type in "w-w-w!"

Of course, my main interest tends to be on the order of politics. Man, I spend a lot of time on that stuff, chewing it all up, trying to get a feel for all the subtle little flavors tinging my tongue, and then trying to spit it all back out in little deciphered bits and pieces. It's not an easy task, mind you. There's so much crap out on the political landscape it's not even funny.

So, being that I mostly read about politics and write about politics, a word like "pork" becomes a very intriguing one. The phrase "eat your pork slowly," is even more eye-catching as it comes just about the time a little bill happens to be in the process of being shoved through Congress—okay, really there's a couple of little bills in the House right now. One's about health care and one's about jobs. And so that just adds to the intrigue. Yeah, there's enough pork in either one of those two bills to make Smithfield Foods quite the envious ones...if only they could get their hands on just some of that bounty of swine, boy what a business they would have. Nobody does pork like the United States government does.

So when I came along that title, "Eat Your Pork Slowly," I thought for sure I knew what I was getting into. I mean, it's not that I'm unfamiliar with who the writer of the piece is. On HubPages he goes by the moniker tobey100, and he does talk politics.

Of course, when I clicked on through, what I actually landed upon had nothing to do with those two pork-laden bills in Congress right now. There was nothing in there about Nancy Pelosi, or Harry Reid, or even a republican for that matter. Nothing at all. It was a story about a guy by the name of Haskell Sizemore who is a pig farmer who's got a prize pig named Beau. Not any pig mind you. I said a special pig. You see, this special pig actually saved the entire Haskell family from a fire one day. This is a remarkable pig to be sure. The story is good too. On the order of one of those silly things I was talking about earlier. But good silly.

Now, of course, I did just now tell you that this fun little story on the order of silly was not about politics. Then again, maybe it was. Just a little bit. There is a bit of an underying political edge to this little ditty about Haskell Sizemore and his remarkable pig after all. I'll grant you, it's quite subtle. But it is there.

I mean, think about it. Here's this pig that does the grandest of things for Sizemore and his whole family. He puts his own life and livelihood on the line, in a sense, doesn't he? I mean come on, he's a friggin' pig, on a pig farm for God's sake, and we all know what happens to a pig on a pig farm. Why wouldn't he see the pig farmer's house ablaze, yell a couple of glorious "yips," and then open the gates to free his comrades from their inevitable fates? Instead, he see's the pig farmer's house ablaze and then goes to the house and wakes up the whole family and they are saved.

Perhaps old Beau just had an ulterior motive. That could be it. By the way, did I ever tell you that ulterior motives sometimes don't always work out quite the way we expect them to?

Anyway, do you see it just a little bit? The correlation. Maybe it's not quite clear yet. I don't want to give anything away, that would take all the fun out of it. But I bet if you read the story, I'm sure you'll get it. Beau knows exaxctly what I'm talking about. Haskell Sizemore don't get it. But trust me, Beau knows.

READ "EAT YOUR PORK SLOWLY" BY TOBEY100
Eat Your Pork Slowly


Thursday, March 4, 2010

IF YOU ARE OLD, YOU ARE OLD, JUST TELL IT LIKE IT IS


People are simply too damn sensitive nowadays, but I find it surprising when it's the older generation who gets on board the old politcal correctness bandwagon as well. Because that's just not something from the past, that's something that's unfortunately developed only recently as we've become more and more a really touchy-feely kind of society.

The old man said, "I don't like the word 'senior,' I think it has a bit of a negative feel to it."

I can sympathize with not wanting to be called certain things. You don't have to be a rocket scientist to clearly understand that there are certain things that should very well be off limits, and it has nothing whatsoever to do with political correctness. Those "off limits" things would be obvious derogatory terms. In the case of an old man, calling him a 'geezer,' for example, is probably not a very nice thing to do, and should rightly be refrained from. Calling an old man an old man? Well, that's a bit different isn't it? If you are on in the years you are old. Even if old could potentially mean used up or out of useful commission. Old could also mean built better, more solid, or more ornate. An old house has character, for example. Nowadays it's just two-by-fours, cheap walls, and a roof. So in this context, being referred to as "old" might even be a compliment.

Taking it one step further, there are some black folks who like to be called black. Others like to be called African-American. Though I've run into some black folks who hated to be called African-American, and others who have hated to be called black.

The fact is that this kind of thinking just serves to make the world a very difficult place in which to live together, peacefully, and harmoniously. It makes people seem too fragile, and certainly unapproachable. Perhaps if I don't know what to call you, I just won't talk to you at all.

One wonders why, in today's society, people barely bother to even say a simple 'hello' when they pass by you on the street, or in a grocery store, or in a parking lot. You'd be lucky to get even a smile. After all, someone might be offended you've said hello to them. They might become suspicious you've smiled at them.

"Excuse me, but do I know you?" As though that is somehow a prerequisite to acknowledging the very presense of another human being.

To the offended old man and subscribers of political correctness I say this; this is not the kind of world I want to live in. I don't think it's the kind of world you grew up in. And it's this kind of thinking, this kind of immediate offense that is quite literally ripping apart the fabric of our communities across the country, and shame on us for letting it get this way.

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