Ojai Orange.com | home | archives | press | contact us

Ojai Orange | The Column of Lasting Insignificance | Books | Wait-A-Minute

April 25, 2009
John Wilcock - January 5, 2008

 

  The column of lasting insignificance
     


also posted:



2011
November 26 2011
November 19, 2011
November 12, 2011
November 5, 2011
October 29, 2011
October 22, 2011
October 15, 2011
October 8, 2011
October 1, 2011
September 24, 2011
September 17, 2011
September 10, 2011
September 4, 2011
August 27, 2011
August 20, 2011
August 13, 2011
August 6, 2011
July 30, 2011
July 23, 2011
July 16, 2011
July 9, 2011
July 2, 2011
June 25, 2011
June 18, 2011
June 11, 2011
June 4, 2011
May 28, 2011
May 21, 2011
May 14, 2011
May 7, 2011
April 30, 2011
April 23, 2011
April 16, 2011
April 9, 2011
April 2, 2011
March 26, 2011
March 19, 2011
March 12, 2011
March 5, 2011
February 26, 2011
February 19, 2011
February 12, 2011
February 5, 2011
February 5, 2011
January 29, 2011
January 22, 2011
January 15, 2011
January 6, 2011

2010
December 25, 2010
December 18, 2010
December 11, 2010
December 4, 2010
November 27, 2010
November 20, 2010
November 13, 2010
November 6, 2010
October 30, 2010
October 23, 2010
October 16, 2010
October 9, 2010
October 2, 2010
September 25, 2010
September 18, 2010
September 11, 2010
September 4, 2010
August 28, 2010
August 21, 2010
August 14, 2010
August 7, 2010
July 31, 2010
July 24, 2010
July 17, 2010
July 10, 2010
July 3, 2010
June 26, 2010
June 19, 2010
June 12, 2010
June 5, 2010
May 29, 2010
May 22, 2010
May 15, 2010
May 8, 2010
May 1, 2010
April 24, 2010
April 17, 2010
April 10, 2010
April 3, 2010
March 27, 2010
March 20, 2010
March 13, 2010
March 6, 2010
February 27, 2010
February 20, 2010
February 13, 2010
February 6, 2010
January 30, 2010
January 23, 2010
January 16, 2010
January 9, 2010
January 2, 2010

2009
December 26, 2009
December 19, 2009
December 12, 2009
December 5, 2009
November 28, 2009
November 21, 2009
November 14, 2009
November 7, 2009
October 31, 2009
October 24, 2009
October 17, 2009
October 10, 2009
October 3, 2009
September 26, 2009
September 19, 2009
September 12, 2009
September 5, 2009
August 29, 2009
August 22, 2009
August 15, 2009
August 8, 2009
August 1, 2009
July 25, 2009
July 18, 2009
July 11, 2009
July 4, 2009
June 27, 2009
June 20, 2009
June 13, 2009
June 6, 2009
May 30, 2009
May 23, 2009
May 16, 2009
May 9, 2009
May 2, 2009
April 25, 2009
April 18, 2009
April 11, 2009
April 4, 2009
March 28, 2009
March 21, 2009
March 14, 2009
March 7, 2009
February 28, 2009
February 21, 2009
February 14, 2009
February 7, 2009
January 31, 2009
January 24, 2009
January 17, 2009
January 3, 2009

2008
December 27, 2008
December 20, 2008
December 13, 2008
December 6, 2008
November 29, 2008
November 22, 2008
November 15, 2008
November 8, 2008
November 5, 2008
November 1, 2008
October 25, 2008
October 18, 2008
October 11, 2008
October 4, 2008
September 27, 2008
September 20, 2008
September 13, 2008
September 6, 2008
August 30, 2008
August 23, 2008
August 16, 2008
August 9, 2008
August 2, 2008
July 26, 2008
July 19, 2008
July 12, 2008
July 5, 2008
June 28, 2008
June 21, 2008
June 14, 2008
June 7, 2008
May 31, 2008
May 24, 2008
May 17, 2008
May 10, 2008
May 3, 2008
April 26, 2008
April 19, 2008
April 12, 2008
April 5, 2008
March 29, 2008
March 22, 2008
March 15, 2008
March 8, 2008
March 1, 2008
February 23, 2008
February 16, 2008
February 9, 2008
February 2, 2008
January 26, 2008
January 19, 2008
January 12, 2008
January 5, 2008

2007
December 29, 2007
December 22, 2007
December 15, 2007
December 8, 2007
December 1, 2007
November 24, 2007
November 17, 2007
November 10, 2007
November 3, 2007
October 27, 2007
October 20, 2007
October 13, 2007
October 6, 2007
September 29, 2007
September 22, 2007
September 15, 2007
September 8, 2007
September 1, 2007
August 25, 2007
August 18, 2007
August 11, 2007
August 4, 2007
July 28, 2007
July 21, 2007
July 14, 2007
July 7, 2007
June 30, 2007
June 23, 2007
June 16, 2007
June 9, 2007
June 2, 2007
May 19, 2007
May 12, 2007
May 5, 2007
April 28, 2007
April 21, 2007
April 14, 2007
April 7, 2007
March 31, 2007
March 24, 2007
March 17, 2007
March 10, 2007
March 3, 2007
February 24, 2007
February 17, 2007
February 10, 2007
February 3, 2007
January 20, 2007
January 13, 2007
January 6, 2007

2006
December 30, 2006
December 23, 2006
December 16, 2006
December 9, 2006
December 2, 2006
November 25, 2006
November 18, 2006
November 11, 2006
November 4, 2006
October 28, 2006
October 21, 2006
October 14, 2006
October 7, 2006
September 30, 2006
September 23, 2006
September 16, 2006
September 9, 2006
September 2, 2006
August 26, 2006
August 19, 2006
August 12, 2006
August 5, 2006
July 29, 2006
July 22, 2006
July 15, 2006

 

 



April 25, 2009

     “The reason why we are not hearing more about a single-payer (health) system is that, if America makes the change, private insurance companies will lose the estimated $400 billion in administrative costs they charge Americans each year”—Chandler Gosh, NYC

    “Let’s put the insurance companies out of business as soon as we possibly can”—Lisa R. Hirsch, Oakland, CA.

{extracts from adjoining letters in the New York Times, Apr. 15}

HACKING INTO U.S. GOVERNMENT websites has become such a popular pastime in China that hundreds of thousands are reported to be doing it. “The post Tiananmen generation has known little hardship” reports Popular Science, “so rather than pushing for democracy, many young people define themselves in opposition to the West…the largest unifying characteristic is nationalism”. The mag says that all this widespread hacking is very close to the state which rarely interferes, and hackers in China are often regarded as rock stars.

Reporting from across the Atlantic, New Scientist says this intrusive activity has prompted  the U.S. government to invest $30 million in replicating the U.S. military’s communications systems to research countermeasures. Wars of the future will probably begin with attacks from computers aimed at disabling the control systems for power stations, chemical plants and water utilities. “We are largely blind and ignorant on how to protect ourselves against cyber attacks” confesses Amit Yoran, an electronic security expert from Virginia. 

DIFFICULT DECISIONS THAT must be made about such subjects as oral, anal and phone sex—does Islam allow them?—are supposedly dealt with by a couple of websites listed in Utne Reader’s story headed Red-Hot Fatwahs, but attempts to click on the sites are unrewarding. The tale originally appeared in Maisonneuve, a Montreal magazine which goes into amusing (imaginary?) detail about how oral sex may be allowed so long as “no semen is swallowed”.

AMAZON IS SO SECRETIVE about its financial affairs, charges Business Week, that researchers are obliged to use “creative sleuthing” to uncover revealing facts about current consumer spending. The magazine says that tracking the Seattle giant has become like Internet-age Kreminology. “We tend to find them generally unhelpful” says analyst Jeffrey Lindsay of Bernstein Research, “so we have to rely on our own ingenuity”. With no physical stores to spy upon, one tactic that has been considered is to have college kids lurk outside Amazon warehouses to count trucks as they leave. An earnings report from the company was expected this week.

A RECENT NYTIMES story revealed the growing number of wronged victims who are unable to seek retribution from the courts because they can’t afford the excessive fees demanded by lawyers to defend them. It’s a reminder of how impossible it is for poor people to get justice because of the way the whole system is rigged. Maybe someday a pro bono group of lawyers will join together to move their profession closer to obsolescence. It’s a truth that seems too obvious to contemplate, that  court procedures should be simplified enough for any man/woman in the street to be able to state their case simply without needing a lawyer to represent them. The ridiculously unreasonable rates charged by lawyers is partly explained  by the revelation last week that one NYC law firm pays most of its 1,300 associates about $250,000 each.

BUSINESS JET PLANES are proving to be an extravagance that some companies can no longer afford, according to Portfolio which says that almost 2,500 of them are currently on the market. The mag says AIG, Citigroup, Lehman Brothers are among those offering sales but that most are overpriced and not likely to sell in a hurry. Wachovia, for example, is trying to peddle, for $19.9 million, a 10-year-old Falcon 2000 for which it paid $20 million. Not exactly a bargain.

LATE NIGHT HUCKERSTERISM is thriving according to Fortune which tells the tale of black-bearded pitchman Billy Mays and his partner Tony Sullivan, megastars of a $300 billon industry best known for items such as the Awesome Augur and the Hercules Hook. The Discovery Channel’s Pitchmen on which they star began last week. Last year the pair pitched 56,000 minutes of TV at a cost of $170 million during which, says the mag, they have turned the stain remover OxiClean into a $200 million-a-year brand. Their three-step process, an old carney routine, is explained as “ballying the tip” (drawing a crowd), “nodding them in” (positive endorsement) and “chillin’ them down” (making the sale).

THE WILCOCK WEB: Almost all bankruptcies, whether individual or business, stem from a single source: buying something you can’t afford….John McCain’s 17-year-old Straight Talk bus (40-feet long, $89,000) is on offer at busforsale.com……Donors to the NTYC-based Fresh Air Fund are asking why the charity needed to blow half a million dollars for a NYTimes ad boasting about its achievements…..And having wasted three pages a day for the past year telling readers what’s in the paper, the Times will now cut back that surfeit to a single page….….NASA’s Kepler space telescope is currently scanning 100,000 stars searching for any with a climate that could sustain life…. NBC’s highly-touted new show, Parks & Recreation, is too feeble to be funny….After losing a legal challenge, Britain’s Department of Work and Pensions was obliged to include erotic strippers and sex chat line workers in vacancies listed at local job centers…. A recent study, reported by the Independent, showed that the lower a country’s newspaper circulation, the more corruption it registered…. “A good relationship with a few journalists is worth a thousand press releases” advises Red Pepper magazine’s feature on how to get media attention…. Barry Manilow says he didn’t seek to be a star and you can’t possibly prepare for it. “I fought it constantly and think I was rude. I’m telling you, when success hits, you go through your asshole period”…... Testing the electronic cigarettes in which tobacco is dissolved in propylene glycol—vaporized by an electric heating coil—the New Scientist reported that each boring puff delivered only one-third the amount of nicotine from a regular cigarette….. Revelation Research, which monitors supermarkets claims that almost three quarters of customers are ‘pullers’ (who “tend to be more aggressive and impatient about shopping”) compared with those who push their carts (mostly, Hispanics)….“Madness is a rare thing in individuals, but in groups, parties, peoples and ages it is the rule —Friedrich Wilhem Nietzsche (1844-1900)

4/18/09

===========================

comments? send an email to John Wilcock

===========================

TOP

     

© 2006-2013 ojaiorange.com | web design by David Buehrens