kaizen
what's been floating my boat lately:

"How fortunate for governments that the people they administer don't think."
-Hitler-
"Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former."
-Albert Einstein-

1/9/19 (20:57)

  • been having a hard time updating lately. really been trying to relax as soon as the kids go to bed.
  • if i could hire people at the rate i'd like, then we'd have probably 3 employees and would be getting a lot more done. really tough to find people. when i was in school they talked about full employment being about 5% unemployment. we're at 3.7% now. supposedly (according to some democrats) it would be even better if trump wasn't the president. according to trump it would be even better if the Fed wasn't raising interest rates. never been a fan of these counterfactuals. impossible to prove.
  • anyway, the point is that we're basically at full employment in the traditional sense of the term and that means that people who want work are basically working and people who aren't working aren't working for a decent reason. maybe they're very low skilled or lazy or something like that. the average time spent looking for jobs has about doubled since 2008 which indicates to me that people are being very picky about the jobs they are willing to take. in 2008 the average time spent looking for a job was like 2 hours a day and today it's about twice that. in 2008 if you found a job then you would take it. today, the average job seeker wants a job with the right pay, benefits, work environment, etc. it's a job seeker's market right now. hence the problem i'm having finding help. i know a few marginally employed people and i haven't found any of them to be very reliable or motivated. all this is to say that looking for people right now is very difficult.
  • i haven't gotten many replies to ads we've done looking for help. here's one of the few people who responded to my question asking about his ideal work environment and what work he's doing now:
  • "Hi Chris  thanks for replaying to my request .

  • I been remodeling a condo two one houses in last couple of years also I am building a house for my family and do mechanical work. I have a few friends who own mechanic shops and I help them to promote/market their business.    So I  kept busy   but recently has being some changes on personal life   I see suitable and necessary to get a job that I can consider stable,   meaning I can prove income. also I would like to go home clean.    The Auto Mechanical  work pays very well but it can take a  physical toll and mental as it can be quite stressful.
    Ideal Job Environment   for me would be where I can peacefully work, I can begin and end a work day the same way I did a day before.  Also where there’s communication  I believe communication is very important.  So much can be not only solved but prevent by simply communicating
    Any how that would be my ideal however I am tolerant and can deal with pressure. I have worked with various investors and designers, done house flips., I have done custom cabinets before and I know what involves from the moment you take a phone call meet client design sale your design and sale the contract order materials cut list stain finish installation collect check do everything possible and impossible if possible! To not live a service  “services are bad”  I might be wrong but I rather work extra hours to finish so nobody has to go back.
    To tell you the truth I am not sure which job you were offering and I remember I did applied to few jobs that could teach me a few things that I don’t know how todo like texture and stucco work   I have tried and fail miserable I can’t do those not even to save my life everything else I can handle my self cabinets, closets, doors, crown & base molding are my strongest, sales don’t intimidate me but not sure if I convince people or I talk too much and buy my contracts so I leave but I can sale
    I hope you can have a better idea about me for good or bad but surly it will be even.    Lol have a great day"
  • speaking of the economy the unemployment rate is at its lowest for whites since 1969 and at its lowest EVER for blacks, hispanics and asians. my personal, totally arbitrary, rule is that new presidents own the economy after being in office for one year. so, things were sliding downward when obama took office, but after a year or two then had plateaued and then started moving upwards. clearly that was partly a result of his policies. again, we can't get into counterfactuals, but i think his stimulus was weak and poorly applied, but the recovery was real and has been sustained so he gets a B.
  • trump has had the economy for 2 years now and instead of it going to absolute shit, as many predicted, it has continued to do pretty well. trade wars have ramped up, but still the economy continues to do well. that's the good news and we have to give him some credit. however, this is a very short term analysis. the trade wars are doing real damage and may not work out well in the long run if china doesn't give in to his demands. if they give in to his demands for more fairness (something i actually agree with trump about), then maybe the short term damage is worth the long term gains. the tax cuts have undoubtedly been a stimulus for the economy and letting people keep more of their money is generally a moral good. however, we're running a horrible deficit and i think that's a problem. there are also signs of a recession next year (momentary partial yield curve inversion, for example).
  • so, right now it's trump's economy and it's doing well. a year from now, though, may be a very different story. we may have a recession, the deficit most likely would be worse at that point, and who knows what will happen with the china issue. in the interest of calling balls and strikes, i think you have to give trump some short term kudos at this point by at least acknowledging that the economy is good now.
  • having said all that, i think that most people overestimate the effect the president has on the economy. the Fed is a separate entity (though the chair is appointed by the president) and they have about as much influence on the economy as the executive branch, yet they get about 10% as much coverage.
  • the last few years i've had a real hard time watching any of these hollywood awards shows. weinstein and others really showed how fake these pricks are. not only is it their job to be fake, but they're so overly dramatic in real life. the clooney speech (mocked by south park) is a perfect example. i really can't stand them lately.
  • last weekend there was a story that seems to sum up the media of late. the story was on CNN and other major outlets. it went like this: "conservatives lose their minds over alexandria ocasio-cortez dance video" the story was that conservatives were mocking the dance video, that they thought she was awful because of it for some reason, etc. at first my reaction was very similar to most of the internet comments i saw: who would be offended by this video? wow, the republicans are really looking nuts by being shocked by this mild video. etc. then i realized that the story was entirely made up. as the NYT recalls its origin: "An edited version of the original footage surfaced when a Twitter account with the handle @AnonymousQ1776 published it online. “Here is America’s favorite commie know-it-all acting like the clueless nitwit she is,” read the tweet from @AnonymousQ1776, which incorrectly described it as a video from her high school days. The account was deleted before it resurfaced and disappeared again on Saturday." that's the whole story. one single twitter account tweeted something negative about her dancing and the mainstream media picked up the story as if it were a real story and as if people were actually outraged by this video. but when i went looking for the outrage from republicans and conservatives...nothing. i haven't found a single real person (talking head paid to stir controversy or otherwise) who has said anything resembling "losing their mind" or "outrage."
  • this is an entirely made up story about a video no one cares about. the fact that the NYT says it was meant as a smear and backfired is crazy. the fact that CNN spent time talking about it is outrageous. msnbc, vox, etc. all covered the story and (from the stories i read) all of them avoided mentioning the fact that no one actually cares about AOC dancing in a music video while in college.
  • i don't consume much day to day media anymore, but i saw this while at the gym and it really reinforced the notion that the mainstream media is completely off the reservation. they have no connection with the real world. they seek to create controversy because it's content and clicks for them. honestly, this kind of thing is just as likely to bring down our society as trump, and i don't say that lightly. these fake, vapid, vacuous, inane little stories being picked up by just about every major media outlet about what a single twitter user wrote....it's absolutely despicable. it makes me sick that the best coverage i've read of the "story" was on fox news. i've never said that in my life, but in googling about the story, the only news source that seemed to have it right was this story here.
  • i skimmed several stories about this fake controversy and the one that came closest (other than the fox news story) to admitting this wasn't real was this story in vanity fair. but look how she spins it. instead of admitting that no conservatives were outraged, she does some judo on it and says that conservatives have learned not to mock her. she's implying that conservatives would have mocked this video, but they learned they shouldn't because AOC is so charismatic that it doesn't work. THIS IS FUCKING CRAZY. I CAN'T EVEN MAKE THIS SHIT UP. THE MEDIA SUCKS SO MUCH DICK AND IS GOING TO FUCKING RUIN OUR COUNTRY. THEY'RE GOING TO GIVE THE ORANGE GUY MORE AIR TIME AND THEN DIVIDE US WITH BULLSHIT STORIES. I FUCKING HATE THEM.
  • from the vanity fair piece:
  • "Last week, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez offered a master class in the aggressive yet disarming use of social media that has defined her early political career. An anonymous account tweeted a video of a cheerful, college-aged Ocasio-Cortez dancing on a rooftop, intended to depict her as a “clueless nitwit.” The recently inaugurated congresswoman, recognizing an opportunity, responded by politicizing the social-media skirmish, accusing her sternest critics in the Republican Party of believing that “having fun should be disqualifying or illegal.” She later went a step further: “I hear the GOP thinks women dancing are scandalous,” she tweeted, along with a video of her grooving outside her new office on Capitol Hill.

  • Ocasio-Cortez’s tweet immediately went viral, thanks to the potent combination of shameless dancing, millennial nostalgia-bait “Lisztomania,” and a throng of friendly digital-media companies that promptly agreed that conservatives had, indeed, “lost it.” Multiple Web sites declared that Ocasio-Cortez was the target of a “smear campaign.”

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    The charge spread rapidly online, despite Republicans’ insistence that nobody really cared. “No one thinks this is scandalous,” tweeted Rep. Dan Crenshaw, himself a burgeoning conservative media darling, adding that the Breakfast Club-inspired dancing “was actually pretty good.” Non-politicians went further, claiming that the mainstream media was trying to distract voters from Ocasio-Cortez’s more radical policies (a 70 percent marginal income tax on the wealthy, for instance) by ginning up imaginary right-wing haters. “There is literally no evidence that any human Republican shamed AOC over her dancing video,” wrote the Daily Caller’s Benny Johnson, in response to an article bashing conservatives for obsessing over the video. Fox News media reporter Brian Flood lamented the “slew of misleading stories claiming conservatives were outraged over it, despite virtually no supporting evidence.”

    It appears Republicans have finally learned, after nearly seven months of lobbing relentless attacks at the 29-year-old for largely superficial reasons—like whether she went to a fancy high school, or if she was just some Instant Pot liberal who wears designer clothes—that criticizing Ocasio-Cortez only makes her stronger. Republicans first recognized the obsession with A.O.C. had backfired in November, after a conservative journalist commented on the clothes she wore in Congress. “I personally think that stuff is wrong, and you shouldn’t do it—because it negates your argument, and it only kind of solidifies her status,” media critic Stephen L. Miller told me at the time. But even then, it was too late—the newly minted congresswoman had already been elevated to a position of Trump-like power within the Democratic Party, capable of resetting the political agenda with a tweet, or triggering her own media spin cycle. No wonder, then, that conservatives pulled their punches on the dancing video, and protested so forcefully when they were accused of taking the bait. If earlier tussles with Ocasio-Cortez had been counterproductive, the prospect of attacking her for an innocent homage to a classic 80s movie would have been catastrophic."

  • i'm so fucking pissed. i watched CNN for 30 minutes and it ruined my day.


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