Dismissal

Mine was, I suspect, typical.  The surprise was that my new boss was in from Chicago.  I doubt he flew in just to let me go.  (Side note – when my Dad got “let go” from GE, they called it a “Layoff” and indeed it was for in a year or so, the called him back.)

Its interesting to me that I don’t remember the exact language.   He had a 1 on 1 scheduled with me (which he had postponed from last week because I had taken that day off).   It said in the schedule the boss “will call … ” because we always did them by phone, he being in Chicago, and I usually called because I would go find a private room for a private meeting.  Not everyone’s one on one is private, but I liked to have my one on ones in private.

So my boss was here and I said I wanted to look for a private room for our conversation, maybe one of the little conference rooms off the cafeteria.   He said he already had one booked!

He said it was the “Main Conference Room”.   That was a surprise.  There’s a table in there that seats twenty!  But no alarm bells went off.  (I’m not as sharp as I used to be.)   When we got there and the head of HR was there , I said “Its in use”.   Like I said, not as sharp …  When he said “No, we’re in here.”  I finally figured out that it was my turn.

I think I said something like “So this is it then?” and I think they said yes.  It wasn’t surreal. I wasn’t shocked or confused.  I knew.

They’ve let so many people go, better people than I.  People who had been there longer, and were more central to the place than I ever was, were let go.  I wish I knew the numbers.   There’s something over 500 people still working there, but there were 1100 when I started.  I’ve heard it was 2000 at one time.

There’s still a strong manufacturing base.  Three shifts still.  But they’ve dispatched whole departments.  Gone was the heart of the place, the Creative department.  We used to bring in raw paper and ship out boxed calendars and organizers.  One process, stem to stern.  They removed the whole PrePress department (about which they’re back peddling now).  They wiped out Marketing.  Decimated Forecasting.  Slimed Finance.  More that I’m forgetting.  And even in manufacturing they started with the 25+ year veterans and over and over removed and reassigned managers.

Let’s just say “Nobody worries about getting a good parking space anymore.”  Park wherever you want, there are more spaces today than last week.

Its all typical corporate America.  No malevolence.  No malice.  Not inhumane, just corporate.  More and more work has been outsourced.  Our company has either bought or been bought by another company at least every other year since I started.   Each time, cash went to the new company, and somebody got fired.  Many times it was the people in the other company.  Many emails were sent that ended in “We wish them well.”

It was always boilerplate.

We always felt bad for them.   When the first big layoff (see I said it) came, we were shocked.  Some 200 people that we worked with everyday.  All those 25 year managers.  Poof.  Gone!

I worked on a project where the one of the managers I was working with, was let go right in the middle of it.  “Talk to so and so instead”.  And I did, and brought him up to speed on my issues regarding the project, and then, they let him go.  “Talk to so and so.”

And so it goes.

And so I’m gone.  Its not personal.   Its corporate.   Who could ever confuse the two?

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If you liked the SNL Anniversary – you may find this interesting

http://www.businessinsider.com/david-spade-joke-about-eddie-murphy-2015-2

I like Eddie Murphy and pretty much all of the SNL exes, even Dennis Miller, but I would have thought this would have been a joke Eddie Murphy could have taken and gotten on with his life.   Does a comic have an obligation to take a joke?

The David Spade sketch by the way “Hollywood Minute”, I had forgotten about, but now that I recall it, it was pretty acerbic – and pretty funny.

I guess it is at least consistent with his unwillingness to make fun of Bill Cosby.

Even Eddie Murphy can hold on to a hurt.  Its like he’s Irish or something!

 

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Green and Green and Green

It may not be a great poem, but I wrote it years ago and recently found it.   It got a “nice” from someone whose opinion I respect, and its about the same state of frost these days that I felt back then.

Green and Green and Green

 

In the Valley of the Shadow of Winter
spring hopes eternally.
persistent snow smothers green dreams
no.  huddled.  pushing back gently.  patiently
In the Valley of the Shadow of Winter
spring hopes eternally.
uniformed, proud, they battle
from a distant beach
calling out they say we are here now
but
we are coming
In the Valley of the Shadow of Winter
Spring hopes eternally
pressing through, pushing through
flush and fervor
the Sun comes to warm the valley
touching souls it contacts the underground
“shh,   … be ready”!
Bursting through with warm fervor
the sons shout “we are on our way”
send forth the heralds
peaking through with a smile
extending a gentle touch
the Sun slips away
“but I’ll be back”
In the Valley of the shadow of
winter
sleeping people open
green grass has overtaken frozen snow
warm feelings move stiff and youthful bones
around the valley
thanks are given
gentle smiles
warm Sun
green and green and green
and Baseball
(c) 1989

 

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One more word against the Reagan illusion is still worth stating

Reagan was wrong, money trickles up.  AIDS is not a gay disease.  He was right about us getting out of the middle east, but his party is owned by Wahabist oilmen who are more interested in money than their own beliefs.

Reagan was wrong, money trickles up. AIDS is not a gay disease. He was right about us getting out of the middle east, but his party is owned by Wahabist oilmen who are more interested in money than their own beliefs.

He was both evil and a coward, and he played it big so people would believe him, like when he acted like a fighter pilot during the war, then talked like a fighter pilot as president. He was never a fighter pilot.  A fraud. An idiot. And a mean son of a bitch. He hated the protesters at Berkeley. He ended free public college in California. He was only comfortable in the good ole ways, even if that meant campaigning at the very location in Mississippi where those three civil rights workers were murdered. He was a cold headed bastard. He had no heart. His legend is manufactured – a fraud.

 

 

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I’ll go see it!

Anyone else want to see this movie?  Its probably stupid and surely silly, but Kim Jung can suck my big Un~

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I like Seth Rogan.  He’s goofy.   And when he gets with James Franco he gets really goofy.   Its a funny idea, and I want to see it.  And I want to live in a country where we can make fun of our leaders.  I sure want to live in a country where we can make fun of silly people like Kim Jung Un.    Anyone else?

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Borrowed from Robert Riech

“Movements are now gathering force — countering sexual violence against women, police brutality against minorities, excessive CEO pay, corporate personhood, gerrymandering and voter suppression, too-big-to-fail Wall Street banks; for a living wage, state banks, limits on carbon emissions. Don’t despair. Get involved. Organize and mobilize. Make a ruckus.”

images (1)

 

When Reagan left office, he left in disgrace.  Since then a non elected (cf Roger Ailes, William Kristol, The Nation) cabal like the Drudge Report and Michael what’s his name, then there’s the Fat Fascist and on it goes, have set about getting buildings, boats and airports named after this idiot and loser and intentionally went about turning his legacy around.  That was bad.

But now they’ve distorted it so that what (I know … left wing) people like Bill Maher and myself have started calling him St Reagan (as a joke) because it seems people not only don’t know what Reagan did, but they think it was a benefit to the country.

People have talked about lowering taxes like it is a fetish, and always assume that it will raise revenues.  That’s just stupid.  Taken to its logical extreme (there’s that word again) if we had no taxes we could run the government for free!

St Reagan raised them.  We can raise them.  The top tax bracket on the richest Americans under Eisenhower was 91%.  But guess what, the rich never paid near that.

My taxes are mostly in the 25% range.  But a money fund manager on wall street can make millions, and only pay 15%.

And besides Reagan raised taxes~~~ (I know I said it twice)

And he also signed an illegal immigrant amnesty law into effect!

So what people are saying about him now, in Conservative propoganda, is mostly fantasy.  That is why I quoted Robert Reich, above.

I say we should raise taxes, to pay off the bills, which, if trends continue, the budget deficit will cease to be in a few years, even without it, because it has steadily been diminishing under President Obama.

Consider the military industrial complex.  Consider 11 carrier battle groups.  11!  No other country has 1.  Perhaps a little military belt tightening could be considered.  (SHOCK AND AWE).  Eisenhower warned against the encroaching power of this integrated system of self supporting spending.

We have to be able to have the courage to say these wise ideas again.  I’ll never get elected to anything.  I can say them!

I just wanted to say “Raise Taxes”!  They are words that people used to be able to speak, until the Republican talking machine over-shouted every other sound,  and the joke that was Reagan’s intellect, was reimagined as genius, and his voodoo economics, were just that.

Add in that he consulted astrologers to make his travel plans, and it helps the point that St Reagan was, in fact, a little nutty.

Its time to start thinking with our brains again.

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“Make a ruckus”!

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Soulless pop runs and meaningless lyrics vs art.

Take me to church

Take me to church

Late to work today, because while I was looking the weather I stumbled upon a television station playing music videos.  I have no idea which station it was.  I was groggy.

But something caught my ear before I could orient the remote to move me to the weather channel.  (The old man said).   Power chords and power lyrics.  I don’t know which words I heard first, and I wasn’t sure what I had heard, so I had to go find it on the internet and I played it again.   There was definitely something here.  Then I found the lyrics and I played it again.

With all the pop drivel out there, this song stood out.  Is it a great song?  Only time will tell.  I know I found meaning in it RIGHT away.

Turns out, it has generated quite a bit of controversy.  MANY wildly different interpretations.  Always a good sign.  I think I found art this morning, and it made me late for work.

Take me to church
I’ll worship like a dog at the shrine of your lies
I’ll tell you my sins so you can sharpen your knife
Offer me my deathless death
Good God, let me give you my life

 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tR8b-3FqQqE

I know what it meant when I heard it.  It made me think of Marlena Deitrich.   I’m excited by the passionate contrary interpretations.  So I’m sure its art.  We’ll see if it endures as she did.

 

 

 

 

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These damned kids are playing with fire

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GS5mk-dZ3vU&feature=youtu.be

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They’re ba-ack!

Listen to Air Out My Shorts.  The single best podcast of bad literature read by drunk Canadians that you’ll ever find!

AoMS_Podcast_over

http://www.airoutmyshorts.com/ https://www.facebook.com/pages/Air-Out-My-Shorts/119105408120810

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The reason America is in the current mess that it is in …

Goes way back to here.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_for_the_New_American_Century#Statement_of_Principles.

Yes, its greed and its oil and its Darth Cheney, but its also William Kristol and Robert Kagan.  Kagan hides in the shadows and Kristol is smugly out there on every Sunday TV talk show banging the gong for war.

220px-Bill_Kristol_by_Gage_Skidmore

These, and Cheney, Wolfowitz and others are the harbingers of American Imperialism. They led the dimwitted Reagan and the even more feeble minded Bush II in expansionism and war, spending your money and other people’s sons while claiming righteousness.

This was no accident.  This was a plan.  And now look at the mess they’ve left us.

This was all planned.  Planned poorly, and in a cowardly fashion, in 1997 by the Project for the New American Century.

 

 

 

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