2008 has come to an end and as usual it is time to reflect. The year has provided us with big stories, scandals, laughs and a few tears.
The big news stories of 2008
Barack Obama wins presidential election becoming 44th president. This is the biggest story of the year. Hope and Change better be comin’ because Hopeless and the Same old Shit really suck.
California rescinds the right to marry from gays and lesbians. This is scandalous but belongs with the news stories. On a day when our country elected a black man as president, 3 states voted to discriminate against an entire community. And these intolerant bastards have the balls to defend their actions. It reminds me of the old ‘some of my best friends are [fill in with minority of choice]’ bigotry. Our mission for 2009 must be to work to right this horrific wrong.
Bankruptcy, Bailouts and a Recession. We are watching businesses fail at an alarming rate. Circuit City, Linens and Things, KB Toys, Bennigan’s and many, many other companies have failed this year. The mortgage industry has collapsed thanks to sub-prime loans and the tax payer is taking it on the chin with this no-strings-attached bailout. The Big 3 auto manufacturers are struggling and had come to DC with their paws out. The newspaper industry looks to be on very shaky ground as the New York Times took out a loan and other papers are now terminating home delivery. Americans are losing jobs and their homes and less than 2 months before leaving office still-President Bush tells us that we’re in a recession. Really? I hadn’t noticed.
The New York Giants beat the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XLII. This story was big for me in a couple of ways. I was born in New York and have rooted for the Giants forever – so the Super Bowl win is enjoyable to me. But as I grew up in Miami and went to Miami Dolphins games for many years, I was thrilled that the Patriots lost thus preserving the 1972 Dolphins as the only perfect season.
We are all Georgians. Did John McCain realize that he was talking about a country and not a state when he proclaimed that ‘we are all Georgians?’ Yes, since his foreign policy advisor is on the payroll to lobby on behalf of Georgia. Unlike Bush, maybe McCain didn’t see Putin’s soul? I suspect that this story will become much larger in 2009. And let’s not overlook the Israel – Hamas increased hostility in Gaza. PE Obama really will have his hands full – as will Sec. of State Hillary Clinton.
Is China Purposely Poisoning Us? My defunct website in 2007 used this as its page heading. I felt the media was missing key stories involving imports from China. Reports of tainted pet food, chicken and fish feed, toothpaste, imported fish, honey and tires were hidden by the MSM but linked by my old site. It wasn’t until our children’s toys proved to be tainted did this make headlines. That and the execution of the Chinese head of food safety in July, 2007. This story grew in 2008 but in my opinion it still isn’t getting the attention it deserves.
I have missed others like the Mumbai Hostage Crisis, the Burma cyclone and China earthquake. And did I mention that gas prices are now below $1.60. Is it a coincidence that the speculators bolted from the market beginning in July? Shouldn’t people be going to jail over this?
The big scandals of 2008
John Edwards lies about affair – thus destroying his political career. He spoke up for the poor. He could have been a great VP or head of the DOJ. It wasn’t the $400 haircuts that destroyed him; it was the affair that he lied about even after the National Enquirer discovered it. Meanwhile, David Vitter’s career goes on. Newt Gingrich is doing well. John McCain was just his party’s nominee for the presidency. They all cheated but didn’t suffer the same fate as Edwards and Eliot Spitzer.
Rod Blagojevich tries to sell Barack Obama’s old Illinois Senate seat. Chicago politics at its finest. John Edwards has an affair and is gone from politics but Blago pulls a political stunt and is still around.
Eliot Spitzer and the high priced hooker. True, he was probably set up for this fall since he made significant enemies as Attorney General of New York. But that doesn’t excuse what he did. True, he did the right thing and resigned – and resigned quickly. Has anyone seen David Vitter’s resignation? David Paterson succeeded Spitzer and promptly announced to the world that both he and his wife had been unfaithful. You can’t make this stuff up.
The $150,000 wardrobe. Sarah Palin became the Republican VP nominee and went on a shopping spree. She bought clothes, clothes and more clothes. She spent more than Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman. But she’s giving it back – after it’s worn? Uh, I mean, they’re giving the clothes to the poor. Just what a homeless person wants – a $5,000 dress. Screw a good meal, a warm shower and a job. They don’t even lie well.
The Ted Stevens Conviction. And he almost won re-election. Alaska seems to be the only place where the government officials are more corrupt than Chicago. Stevens will be going to jail unless Bush decides to pardon him. Don Young could be following in Stevens’ path in 2009. And I didn’t mention Trooper-gate.
The Ponzi Scheme – Remember the old pyramid schemes? Well this one takes the cake – or the $50 billion. The ponzi scheme was run be the former chairman of NASDAQ Bernard Madoff. It looks like he bilked investors out of $50 billion. This has the makings of one of the largest scandals of all time. One person has already committed suicide.
People / Things I hope stay in 2008 and never surface again.
Joe the Plumber. Screw his book. His story isn’t that riveting. And he can keep all the JTP knock-offs like Tito the Builder, Mario the septic tank cleaner, Sam the butcher, and Sarah the Governor.
Sarah Palin. I know she is due to surface in 2012 but I’m going to wish long and hard that she won’t.
Billy Mays. He first annoyed me with DiDi7 and now seems to market every gimmicky product. The kids mock him and I really wish his 15 minutes were up. Mighty Putty, OxiClean and that product that removes Dings from my car are just a few of the As Seen on TV products that he pitches. He is almost as bad as Kevin Trudeau. He is the clown who I first remember seeing sell that Mega Memory garbage. Thanks to a court order, he can not sell products only his BS books. So he is hitting us up with a barrage of books – Natural Cures, More Natural Cures, The Weight Loss Cure, Debt Cures – all coincidentally that ‘THEY don’t want you to know about.’ Trudeau is a con-man who has already pleaded guilty to larceny.
I’d love to see many, many other people fade away like Britney, OJ and Ken Blackwell (he’s running for head of the RNC). I am sick of reality programs and wish that they’d put programs on that are intelligent and make me think.
Companies / Products I hope don’t join us in 2009
Companies that want to buy my scraps of gold. This looks like a ploy to take advantage of seniors yet they also advertise on children’s channels (which I don’t get). How gullible must one be to send their scraps of metal and take their word on the value?
The Barack Obama coin / collectable plate and those mall kiosks that sell Obama’s t-shirt. Are there really that many people who purchase Obama merchandise? I guess now that the shirtless Obama pictures are circulating around the web, we’ll see a new set of products hit the market. And I’m sick of the World Trade Center / 9/11 products. Who thought of that 9/11 $20 crap? Ooh, ‘It’s the first time that the 9 and 11 were added up to total the 20 dollar value?’ Give me a break.
Time share calls. This one is a personal one. I don’t own a timeshare and I never have but somehow I have gotten on a ‘this guy owns a timeshare’ mailing list. I get multiple calls on a daily basis asking me if I wish to sell my timeshare points. I am on the Florida and National Do Not Call lists but it doesn’t seem to work nor does my repeated requests to get off of their mailing lists.
In case this is the last post you read from me in 2008 – May you have a happy and healthy 2009. May the change we voted for be what we need to get us back on the right track.
Hope to see you in 2009.
Gene – My 2 Buck$