Monday, November 24, 2008

Ends'n'Odds - I

12 Steps?
I just read that Betty James died at age 90. She cofounded the company that made the Slinky. The article I read did not list a cause of death. I wonder if she fell down a flight of stairs.

But not these!
For the past six months or so, ever since I started my current job, there has been deafening construction on one side of the building I work in. It is a roughly 80-foot high slab of concrete described on the billboard at the construction site as Building 31-C Life Safety/Exit Stairs.

The rest of the nongovernmental world would call it a fire escape. In case of fire I am jumping out my second story window and will leave the life safety exit stairs to the bureaucrats.

Keeping my counsel
Upon entering the building the other day, there was a small free-standing sign directing visitors to the “Council of Councils Meeting.” I wonder what they discuss.
UPDATE: It was a meeting sponsored by the unit called DCPCPSI (Dick Poughkeepsie), or for people who speak English, the Division of Program Coordination, Planning, and Strategic Initiatives

Fantasy Cabinet
President-elect Obama’s Cabinet and staff are taking shape, and the process reminds me a little of my latest diversion – playing fantasy baseball and football, drafting, trading and picking up off the discard pile players I think will be better than my opponents. The purpose is to make me feel smarter than anyone when “I” win and kvetchy about why players I do not know and probably would not want to know fumble, throw interceptions or get thrown out stealing.

Anyway, the one thought I had is that Obama is not putting together a “Team of Rivals” Cabinet but is deftly setting up a fantasy government that could provide news junkies and Republicans with a festive four years.

What he has done is drafted the best possible people – for his personal/executive staff (think Joe Biden, Larry Summers, possibly Gen. Jim Jones as national security adviser)—and staffing the Cabinet with superstars like Hillary Clinton and Bill Richardson, with more big names to follow.

Both staff and Cabinet secretaries serve at the president’s pleasure, but it is the staff that has the ideas and the know-how. The Cabinet officials are supposed to provide vision and public relations. So to the extent Obama benefits from hearing legitimate disagreements, it won’t be among Cabinet equals but between them and the nerds who know what the hell they are doing.

Bet on the nerds.

First assignment
Thanks to an unnamed member of my family for this delicious thought: At 12:30 p.m. on Jan. 20, President Obama “asks” Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to immediately meet with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Raul Castro and Kim Jong-Il.


  1. Anonymous7:49 AM

    Read eight years of your rantings and railing about how Bush was overstepping his powers, assuming control beyond his constitutional position, and of course, he is Hitler.

    Maybe, perhaps maybe, you might want to comment on the *ridiculous* tag: "Office of the President Elect."

    First, there *is* no office of the President Elect. No such animal exists.

    Second, he has no power other than what he has a a U.S. Senator. (Harry Ried's lap dog)

    Third, maybe he should at least wait until after he's elected before even calling himself the President Elect. That election isn't for a couple of weeks yet. So, he ain't the President Elect.

    And lastly, WTF is with the media rising to their feet when this pompous rock star enters the press briefing room? The media anointed King Barack, and no one's even gonna question that the king has no clothes. And particularly, no title and no power.

    None of these grabs for power beyond his constitutional authority bother you in the least, right?

    I find them amusing.

    Enjoy your Kool Aid.

  2. Gaston Glock, thanks for the reminder. Never thought of that before. Does the Big O actually have a sign that says that? Ridiculous for sure!