Archive for business

Gays And The NFL - Tax Exempt Status At Stake

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football NFL

When the crazies get going, the going gets crazy. Yesterday there was an article circulating about Jack Burkman, a lobbyist trying to propose a bill that would ban gay players from the NFL.

What's crazy about that? Well everything from the fact that lobbyists can't propose bills, senators and congressmen must introduce them. But putting that behind, the fact that discrimination in the workplace is prohibited by law, this would stand in the way of such a bill. But some bills do pass that are found unconstitutional, then they're struck down.

Think of all that cost. And also think of this: The NFL exists as it does with a congressional granted tax exempt status. The multi-billion dollar industry saves millions because of that designation. You think they want to risk their non-profit status? According to CBS MoneyWatch:

This decision has saved the NFL uncounted millions in tax obligations, which means that ordinary people must pay higher taxes, public spending must decline, or the national debt must increase to make up for the shortfall. Nonprofit status applies to the NFL’s headquarters, which administers the league and its all-important television contracts.

The NFL is already under attack. Senator Tom Coburn (R-Oklahoma) has already introduced a bill to strip tax-exempt status from sports leagues. How many co-signers do you think would jump on that bandwagon if Congress were to even entertain a bill banning homosexuals from participating in the league?

Two days ago Jason Collins, an openly gay man, joined the NBA Brooklyn Nets. He played in his first game. And guess what? The league didn't collapse. When number 42, Jackie Robinson became the first black player in the MLB, the league didn't collapse. And when and if Michael Sam is drafted by the NFL, the league isn't going to sputter or disintegrate.

Life goes on. Bigotry must fall.

So before ending this post, it might be interesting to know a final fact or two about Jim Burkman, the lobbyist. Via HuffPo:

WASHINGTON -- A Republican lobbyist, [Jack Burkman], hawking a bill that would bar gays from playing in the National Football League has a younger brother who is gay [Jim Burkman].

“I think the idea that he is pushing legislation that is just hurtful and ridiculous is just plain stupid,” said Jim Burkman. “He is not a legislator and he can’t really push legislation. I don’t think there are any cosponsors for a bill. It is just an attention grab and a media grab to pander to those folks who pay him to lobby on their behalf.

Well, now it's time for the NFL to speak up -- and they should because they have a lot to lose -- millions -- if their tax exempt status should be removed. And if they don't come out as accepting of gays, you can count on their exempt status going the way of the "leather helmet" or "Statue of Liberty" play.

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F-Word Beer: Cure For The New Years Hangover

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Exit 6 Pub

C'mon, if you didn't have one too many on New Years Eve, chances are you had a bit to imbibe yesterday on New Years Day with the Rose Parade. Maybe you wanted to sober up with a stop at Starbucks and grab a fresh Frappacino. But, maybe in your slightly inebriated state you missed your destination by a block and instead stopped at  Exit 6 Pub and Brewery, in Cottleville, Missouri. Luckily for you, when you muttered the word Frappacino, the attendant poured you a fresh one from the tap. Yikes, it was beer and not coffee. You looked around and realized you were in an unfamiliar small independent bar and not the standard, uniform confines of the huge Starbucks chain. Gone was the Starbucks green circle with the queen mermaid in it (or whoever she is). No one asked if you wanted a Vente or Grande. They just brought you a glass -- not a paper cup. Damn, you were taken. You were fooled. It's as if you had just crossed over the line and found yourself in a modern day episode of the TWILIGHT ZONE.

Starbucks frappacino

Well, as silly as this sounds, check out the attached video. It seems everyone's favorite coffee shop, the Mega huge Starbucks, took umbridge and issued a cease and desist letter to the owners of Exit 6 Pub and Brewery. This single location bar's response to the demand letter is nothing short of hysterical -- snarkiness to the "nth" degree. The entire correspondence can be found here, courtesy of HuffPo. The back and forth between both Starbucks' lawyers and Exit 6 Pub's proprietor is priceless.

From now on, Frappacino Beer at Exit 6 Pub will be henceforth be known as 'F-word beer' to avoid any confusion. And so there's no hard feelings and in a show of good faith, Exit 6 Pub returned the entire $6 profit made from the mistake. Now if that teaser has you wanting to know more, check out the hysterical news coverage of this brew-haha (intentionally misspelled)  below:

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Bet you didn't hear about this good US economic recovery news in the "liberal media"

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good news bad news paper game

Day in and day out we watch, listen, or read about the latest news stories, and they usually boil down to a few basic themes: criticism of the Obama administration; competing political commentary by the same old competing political talking heads; inordinate amounts of speculation; redundant beating of that poor dead horse, the (apparently) One and Only Very Important Headline of the Day; and trivial fluff.

I have the Tee Vee Machine running all day, so I manage to (over)expose myself to frustrating daytime cable coverage, and not once has there been a mention of today's Los Angeles Times above-the-fold, front page story, "Solid Growth for U.S. Likely in 2014."

That's right, there is such a thing as "economic recovery," yet economic news gets an overwhelming amount of negative attention and analysis, but nary a whisper about the recovery and growth that's being revealed in the Times:

The overall economic outlook for the U.S. has improved sharply in recent weeks amid a string of surprisingly robust economic data: Businesses have stepped up hiring, new factory orders from abroad are at a two-year high and consumers have been flocking to car lots and restaurants.

State and local governments that not long ago were in massive retrenchment are spending more too.

"We could see the unemployment rate down to 6% this time next year," said Robert Kleinhenz, chief economist for the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp. That would be a full percentage point below the current rate and, in some analysts' views, close to full employment.

"Close to full employment." "Close to full employment." I'msorrywhat?

Anyone hear about this anywhere, any time, from anyone today? I sure didn't.

Ahem:

An acceleration to 3% would probably push up U.S. job growth to 250,000 a month on average, from a monthly average of 190,000 over the last 12 months, Kleinhenz said.

At that pace, the nation would recover all the jobs lost in the recession by the end of 2014. And it would push down the jobless rate closer to the 5.5% to 6% range that some now see as the potential long-term unemployment rate.

Maybe our so-called "liberal media" doesn't want to rock the "we're all sunk" (no pun) boat. After all, the more they can stir up even more speculation, anger, confusion, uncertainty, conflict, and controversy, the more opinionated commentators snap at each other, the more drama and rubbernecking they can generate, the stronger their readership, listenership, and viewership become.

And we all know by now that a big dose of what we can all agree is good news just doesn't bring in ratings.

bias liberal media my ass smaller

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You're Damned If You Do, Damned If You Don't

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the poor

What's pleasantly surprising is that despite Republican efforts to stall any safe jobs bill, the economy has picked up. Unemployment dropped in the latest report to 7%, the lowest number in five years.

That's forty-five straight months of improved job numbers. Now that's a great streak, but when you start in such a deep hole, it's more of a continued improvement, but not a clean bill of health.  A healthy overall unemployment number should be somewhere in the two or three percent range. Despite GOP obstruction, the President's plans, along with those of the Fed, are yielding small and steady results. And that could end up being bad news.

Job growth is bad news? Leave it to the GOP to turn improvements into detriments for hundreds of thousands. The Republicans are moving to punish those who weren't lucky enough to grab onto a job and make them suffer even more. The GOP doesn't want to renew the extended unemployment coverage for millions after their state support runs out. And of course, timing is everything. As much as it's a time of "cheer," it's also the time of great despair and the highest numbers of suicide. Being destitute, devoid of hope is a major cause. This is not the time to cut aid to the poor. Food stamps and unemployment need to be continued.

If the GOP really cares -- not that anyone believes that -- but if there's a chance there's a compassionate soul trapped in the body of a Republican, think about working on a reasonable jobs bill. Think about helping with passing a version of the Senate immigration bill. Stop your war on women and healthcare for the poor. And please don't penalize the unemployed who are just trying to find one of the few jobs out there that you haven't found ways to defund or restrict with blockage in the House and Senate.

Being a Scrooge is not only a stigma you'll be able to easily shun, but a compassionate one that you need to shed.

You can't have it both ways. You can't fight job creation on every level, then because the President's plans seem to be working, albeit slowly, slap down the job hunters who haven't been as fortunate.

Find a jobs bill and then, when enough people are working, you might consider cutting back jobless benefits. But now's not the time. Remove people from unemployment with jobs. That's the healthy way. Then the reason to trim extended funding will follow. We're not there yet.

Republicans, if you're not prepared to confess to the world that the President and his party has ushered through some steady economic growth, don't take it out on the less fortunate by further victimizing the jobless, the hungry and those in need. Increasing jobs, decreases unemployment. Don't cut essential programs. It's that simple.

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Cartoons of the Day- Christmas Comes Earlier Every Year

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christmasearly

David Fitzsimmons

Early Christmas

Rob Rogers

christmasearly2

Steve Nease

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DC bar: "Free water all day. Everything else will cost [lawmakers] double."

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 soup nazi no booze for you

The Los Angeles Times has an article titled, "Some businesses benefit from government shutdown" in which they report that "state parks, private museums and other venues are touting themselves as alternatives to closed federal destinations. An insurer marketing wedding policies cites canceled nuptials at national parks."

They go on to give details about businesses using the GOP shutdown as a marketing tool, but there was one passage that caught  my eye:

Shutdown specials have federal employees streaming into capital bars, some of which are kicking off happy hour in the early afternoon. There is just one group not welcome: members of Congress.

One D.C. bar enticing furloughed workers with a free shot of whiskey offers lawmakers their own deal: "Free water all day. Everything else will cost them double."

Since the GOP's favorable rating is now 28%, the lowest Gallup, has measured for either party in its trend since 1992, because they've hit rock bottom, all that's left to say is:

bottoms up

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I Just Got The Results Of My Self-Diagnosis

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introverted person

Damn it. If what I've just read is true, I have a personality disorder. No, I'm not talking about anxiety or an inferiority complex. I'm talking about the big one--"introverted personality disorder" or IPD.

AMA dictionary

Ever read about or look up a disease and its symptoms and become convinced you had  it too?

Well, thanks to HuffPo and their article, "23 Signs You're Secretly an Introvert," I'm sure I got it. Maybe you do to. If you're brave enough to want to find out, just click that link and see for yourself. Beware. I took the test and now I'm "mental."

I knew I had problems, but now these have manifested themselves into a full-blown, on the list of mental illnesses, illness. Thanks to Obamacare, I won't lose my coverage for a pre-existing condition.

The first thing I did was I started doing comprehensive research to find out more of my condition. According to Psychology Today:

So what makes you an introvert? You're probably an introvert if you choose activities like reading, writing, and solving complex conundrums (think Neil Armstrong) over gunning for "life of the party" status. And introverts are better at thinking in their heads than on their feet. However, even if you contribute to advances in the sciences, technology, the arts, and the humanities, just being an introvert comes with a stigma. You may be passed up for a promotion because you don't speak up more, or seen as a snob because you don't attend a social event, or assumed to be depressed because you want to reflect rather than talk.

How come I haven't seen a commercial for this yet? I've seen them for ED, anxiety, stomach distress, sleeplessness, allergies, iron deficiency, even restless legs syndrome. C'mon, FDA, aren't you going to help? Is this cure going to be harder to find than 'Lorenzo's Oil?"

I can't believe they don't have a cure, yet. I'm doomed to have IPD for the rest of my life.

Find a quiet corner and think. Think!!

Wait a minute, maybe this isn't really an illness at all. Maybe I'm being sold a bill of goods to get me in on the ground floor. Today drug companies make billions because they make the cures before they make the illness. That way when the AMA starts calling something a disease, there's already a cure for the doctors to sell you to fix you right back up again, good as new. Patients win. Doctor's win.  Big Pharma wins.

Phewww. This simple 23 question test had me going for a while. But having an analytic mind and this introspective conversation with myself  has saved me. Yeah. I did it-- alone!

Go ahead, World Health Organization and the American Psychiatric Association with your authoritative manuals used for diagnosing mental disorders. Make introverted personality disorder a certifiable diagnosis. Big Pharma's got my six.

Introverts

I'm proud to have this affliction, and I'm going to stay home, talk to myself and maybe read and write more about it. I'm going to enjoy it even more now that I've been self-diagnosed. And I'm even going to take advantage of this IPD. I'm going to come out and sell free "pass" cards you can give people the next time they invite you over for a party and you don't want to go. Just give 'em your pass. Available only through the internet -- this way we can avoid having to meet and carry on an interaction. Go Introverts.

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