Thursday, March 13, 2008


Some people just don't know what to do with all that money, power, influence, and prestige. So they gamble with it. On 22-year-old prostitutes. Isn't it sad that this is the kind of judgment and character we're coming to expect out of our leaders these days? And the media absolutely loves it. CNN, believe it or not, dropped its unremitting campaign coverage almost entirely to cover the scandal. What's the fascination here? Why do we love watching the privileged and powerful fall from grace? Why does the media spend so much time covering crap like this? Isn't there anything more important going on in the entire world than one man's struggle with fidelity in the face of great success?



Banks are hurting these days. People are walking away from homes they can't afford and banks are stuck holding the keys to houses no one will buy. 6 out of the 10 buildings on my block have For Sale signs out front. Won't be long before the bank forecloses on those. One thing is certain in this mess - the banks are going to get their money back somehow. First they lent obscene amounts of money to people who weren't qualified to pay it back, then they jammed up the rates and demanded the money back, and now that they're stuck with a bunch of overvalued real estate, they're heaping the burden back on consumers.

Below is the latest word from the Consumers Union. It's a good idea to check your credit card rates on your statements, as they do change. Issuing banks have been hiking them up quietly in an effort to stop the bleeding. If you don't like what you read, I encourage you to do something about it!


Bank of America recently announced interest rate increases, even for responsible card customers—some people reported new rates as high as 28%! And the bank didn't make it easy to object.

To decline the rate hike, the bank required card holders to write a letter agreeing to stop using the card and pay off the existing balance at the old rate, according to news reports. They couldn't telephone, nor did Bank of America provide a form or a return envelope to help meet the short deadline. If the company didn't get a quick response, rates would automatically rise.

Bank of America is not the only bank to hit card holders with high rates and fees. Banks get to raise your interest rates, as well as the fees they charge for most services, because fine print clauses in your credit card contracts allow it. They don't even have to tell you why they did it.

Tell Congress to protect card holders from unfair rate hikes, exorbitant penalty fees and other fine print "gotchas."

As the economy softens, some Wall Street analysts believe that big banks want to make up their investment losses by raising rates to good credit card customers.

A bill proposed in Congress would help rein in that practice and limit other "gotchas." The bill would protect cardholders against arbitrary interest rate increases; hidden interest charges, due date traps and more.

This bill is long past due! Tell your lawmakers that you support the Cardholders' Bill of Rights. Do something about it!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008


Check this out. I just can't believe it. A woman in Dallas just threw her two kids off an Interstate overpass, and then threw herself off, into busy rush-hour traffic, and they all LIVED.

Here's how it went down, according to police. The mother and her two children, ages 6 and 8, were in a car with her father. When her father stopped for gas, she grabbed her two kids and ran to an overpass. Police say she was not fleeing from danger...rather that she was inexplicably on some kind of homicidal, suicidal mission.

All three fell over 22 feet onto the interstate. Two of them were hit by cars. There were no accidents, and no fatalities. All three are recovering in the hospital. I don't know about you, but that right there is a miracle.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008


Americans are dopey - and most of us don't even realize it!

Yes, you. And you. And you, too. I see you trying to hide back there. You can't hide, though. It's in your water, kids. You've been drugged.

Turns out buying bottled drinking water from a natural spring may be a good purchase after all. According to a report from the Associated Press, pieced together following an exhaustive 5 month investigation, traces of pharmaceutical drugs are widespread in water supplies across the country. Somewhere, Tom Cruise just spit water out all over his keyboard and compiter monitor. Sorry, Tom. This is 21st century America's designer drug culture. We like our pills.

Antibiotics. Mood stabilizers. Pain killers. Sex hormones. You name it. How did they all end up in our water? Think about where that water comes from.

Most Americans are taking some kind of medication. There's a pill for practically everything these days and doctors don't hesitate to write scripts. They're getting perks, kick-backs, freebies, and all kinds of goodies from the drug manufacturers to keep our medicine cabinets stocked with name-brand brain candy. And we're willing partners in the drug dance. We see happy people swinging barefoot from a tire swing in the backyard on a sunny, summer day and think: "I want that feeling right there. Doc, why don't I feel like that? I think I need something to take the edge off."

We're all on something. Birth control. Asthma control. Arthritis relief. Allergy medication. Pain management. Cholesterol control. Boner pops. Sleep aids. Happy happy joy joys. We ingest the drugs, our poor bodies process what they can, and the rest is flushed down the toilet in our urine. That's a lot of people downing a lot of drugs and pissing a lot of excess down the drain day after day after day. It all adds up.

Our waste water is treated before it returns to nature, where it is later collected and repurposed so it can be "safely" consumed as drinking water. The drug residue present in our waste water is often too small to filter out. So it ends up right back in the water supply. According to the report, at least 41 MILLION Americans are habitually sipping pharmacy cocktails every time they raise glass of tap to their lips. This is to say nothing of over-the-counter medicines like acetaminophen and ibuprofen, traces of which are also prevalent in the water supply. If I am scaring you, maybe I could get a job at FOX.

All in all, the AP reported traces of drugs in the drinking water supplies of 24 major metropolitan areas in all areas of the country. Who knew?

Well, as it happens, water providers have been WELL aware of the impurities in our water supply, but have been reluctant to talk about them because it would be a PR nightmare. In a litigious society like ours, can you imagine the class action lawsuit potential here? They say they've been quiet because the public wouldn't know how to interpret the information. They don't want us to start freaking out. But we probably OUGHT to be at least a little concerned - shouldn't we? Researchers don't yet understand the risks of prolonged, persistent exposure to random, changing combinations of manufactured chemicals. But they will. It's literally a matter of time. Already, some studies have shown trace amounts over extended periods of time are significant effects on human cells and wildlife.

So who is looking out for us? The feds are in bed with the pharma corps. They're in no hurry to conduct testing and set safety limits. That would mean regulation and enforcement - and lawsuits against some of their biggest campaign contributors. It would also mean finding money to pay for it all, which is not government's strong suit. Today's politicians are much better at losing money than finding it.

Since we can't very well stop drinking water, our first order of business should be determining just how safe it is to be drinking water contaminated by pharmaceuticals. If we learn there are long-term health risks involved, then things are going to get messy. Then it becomes a matter of finding a more effective way to treat waste water, and/or a more effective way to purify tap water.

Or an alternative way to treat the many ills ceaselessly afflicting the human condition.

Monday, March 10, 2008


Refresh your browser to see the battle cycle from the start. It's a real nail-biter!