I understand that if the government does not do anything about the current financial situation, that things could really look bad; high unemployment, closure of businesses, basically a situation close to what was seen early in the century. Now that 700 billion (and I could not imagine 80 billion in my previous post)is being proposed to rescue and bail out financial firms on Wall Street, I wonder: Are some of these benefits going to "trickle down" to me, to you or your neighbors, and or relatives? Is their mortgage going to be lower in interest? or at least revised to allow for more realistic payments?
I also understand that a lot of regular working people got greedy and thought that by taking on two loans or buying a home that was out of their "budget" was a bit of a stretch and this combination of greed between the little people and those holding the purse strings is what has us in this mess.
So who are we really bailing out here?
I am not sure that anyone has the answer.
Our "fine" Senators are looking really like they are for the people as they give a tongue lashing to Paulson and Bernanke during this morning's Senate banking committee hearing. These same Senators however, are the ones that have the power to regulate, control, pass legislation and in essence police Wall Street. These same Senators have probably rubbed elbows at some point with all the Wall Street big wigs and intervened on their behalf to help or obstruct legislation that will benefit both.
So again, who is at fault in all this mess? It seems that we all have a certain degree of fault and maybe that is why we should all be "bailed out". Instead, and according to Senator Enzi, who is part of the committee, each tax paying American will be "contributing" $2300.00 to bail out Wall Street.
I can tell you this is not end of this fiasco. There is more to come and more to bail out.
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
Last time I checked it was in socialist countries where the government took over private or public owned companies. No matter the reason, whether to rescue them or for nationalistic pride or whatever you want to call it. Wasn't it just recently that Bolivia made a move to nationalize its oil and gas reserves?
The U.S. Government is now poised to "own" 80% of AIG at the low bargain price of 80 billion. I can't even picture how much money that would be if it was all piled up in $100.00 bills. I know it is only a 2 year loan however, if you have to bail me out and pay my mortgage off, how can you expect me to pay you back in two years?. AIG will not pay back and the U.S. will own a bunch of nicely appointed offices around the world until a "buyer" comes along to buy it from the government at a discount. That is precisely what happened in Mexico a few years ago when the government "nationalized" and took over failing companies because of the recession in the late 80's then it sold all those companies to well connected friends within the presidency.
The argument is the same as with the rescue of Fannie and Freddie
. If the government sits and just watches without doing anything about the mess, the entire world financial system will collapse because of how inter-related everything is.
I am sure that there is a lot of true to that and maybe I am just thinking small potatoes and fail to see the "bigger picture".
Who are we helping and rescuing here? Is it the institutions themselves or a bunch of highly placed investors with lots to lose.
Why not bail out our health care system instead and put that 80 billion dollars to better use?..
maybe we might just lead a new revival of true socialism.
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
I caved in and ended up getting an iPhone over a blackberry. I could have gotten a blackberry for free but, the selling point was the combo of an i-pod and a phone. You can also add more memory to a blackberry and still get he same effect. If I hadn't busted my i-pod, then I probably would have gotten the blackberry - despite the fact that its email property is useless since I cannot hook it up to our company's email server, thus not able to receive work email instantly on my phone. I know it is possible to set up a forwarding mode through outlook, but the company "politely" asked everyone to turn the feature off.
I am already having issues though. I just bought it and it already has an update to its software - to repair bugs and other connecting issue that iPhone's been having. Then again, I had some issues with the TMobile server as well. Will I stay a convert and recommend it to everyone?. Maybe I have 2 years to decide.
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
I am quite sure you've heard of wine tastings, beer tastings, perhaps even sake or scotch tastings. Granted maybe even gone to a liquor spirit tasting, but have you ever seen 60 labels of tequilas in one single tasting?.. I am not talking about cuervo gold or any tequila that will make you throw up at the mere sound of the name "tequila".
I am talking about names like; Chinaco, Casa Noble, Corzo, even Patron and Don Julio were represented.
We did the tasting at our restaurant as part of a charity event for Three Square and their Restaurant Week program where lots of restaurants from Las Vegas offer special menus at pre-determined prices with proceeds going to Three Square. Our event took place on a Thursday night.
We put together 60 labels from our tequila list in addition to others offered by local distributors. It wasn't just the tequilas that we offered. We also had old black and white movies from Mexico's golden era playing on our plasma screens and projectors. The ambiance music was enhanced with a live DJ sound of old Mexican songs as well as some modern beats.
Of course we also had food passed out on trays for the crowd as well as some "goodies" to take home on your way out.
The tequilas were of course the main attraction. Each brand was represented by their best line up; including silver or blanco, reposados, and aniejos. Some of the local vendors came in representing their brands while they educated the participants into their product.
Why it was the greatest? Because for $15.00 you got to taste some of the best tequilas anywhere. It is hard to find a restaurant who has a good selection of tequilas, much less a great list without traveling to meccas like: New York, L.A. or even Mexico.
Now for you to tray lets say a flight (A flight is a selection of 3 or more selections for one price) of tequila, you'll spend anywhere from 15 up to 100 dollars depending on the types.
For this tasting we had some of the best for the price. Granted, it would have been greater if you'd had the chance to try a 30th anniversary Chinaco, Sauza Triada, or even Patron Burdeos, but we did have offer some JC Reserva de la familia and most of the aniejos at hand were just as good as some of the higher priced tequilas. What is making these aniejos better is the new techniques and high tech now being used at the distilleries in Tequila Jalisco, though not all tequilas is produced in Jalisco, other states have the right to produce it and still call it tequila. Even Mezcal from Oaxaca is beginning to be aged in barrels that have stored whiskey or red wine. This of course will add more depth and character to the spirit.
Tequila has come a long way and it still has a lot more to go. Tastings like the one we just had help to promote not just the product but the culture as well. Our music was not all about mariachis and ranchers, we had boleros sang by Lila Downs and old trios like, Los Dandys and Los Panchos.
If you ever go or are invited to a tasting, please let me know or invite me as well. My favorite:
Chinaco 30 yr
If you ever have the luxury to try Patron Burdeos, it is worth the price (anywhere from 50.00 to 100.00) sip it. Do not shoot or even drink with a lime or salt.