Tuesday, August 29, 2006

China's Got Too Much Money

According to MSNBC/Newsweek (hat tip to Fark.com for the link), China's "dollar hoard" is expected to pass one TRILLION dollars in the next couple of weeks.

This is worrying on so many levels.

Not the least of which being the fact that our country is in debt out the wazoo to China, of all countries.

The article, though, says it's worrying China, too. Worrying? Having a huge pile of cash and making the most powerful nation on earth beholden to you for more?

Seriously, I feel bad for the Chinese. They're talking about having to raise the valuation of Chinese money now, which the Chinese are afraid will cause bankruptcies.

My solution:

I will, as soon as I hear from the Chinese government, open an account in Switzerland, into which they may place as much money as they wish. Oh, there'll have to be a minimum. Let's make it one month's worth of revenues, or $17 Billion dollars. Granted, it's a drop in the bucket compared to what they're looking at, but the more they give me, the fewer their worries, right?

I've got to add that I have no intentions of spying on America in exchange for the money. I don't even have any access to classified information, anyway. So, I can't give them that, and I wouldn't if I could.

What I'm proposing is to bridge the gap between our cultures. They give me money, and I in turn tell everyone I meet how great China is.

It's a win-win situation.


Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Spam, AT&T and An Old Man From Alaska

I recently switched over to Google mail (Gmail). I love the layout, and the amount of storage is great. I promise this isn't setting up a commercial for GMail.

I still have a Yahoo account that I use as well, but my main email address is now on Gmail, and I hope I never have to go back to the world of switch-my-address-as-often-as-I-switch-my-ISP.

But the spam!

I'd really like to find the jerk who figured out how to get around spam-filters by making the message into a picture file (thus bypassing the filters' text analyzers), and force-feed him about a ton of the other kind of spam in roughly 2 minutes. With a white-hot branding iron to use as a fork.

Am I angry? Sure. Who wouldn't be angry? Think of it like this:

You buy a house, and move in all of your possessions. A salesman comes knocking on the door. You politely tell him that you're not interested, and he leaves.

But he keeps coming back. Every day.

You take active steps to discourage his return. You get surveillance gear, "No Trespassing" signs, vicious dogs, etc. And still, he comes up with ways around these measures every time.

Now here's the question:

Why in Heaven's name would anyone believe for one second that bothering someone in this way is going to get that person to buy your product?!!?!???!!!???!?!??!!!??!?!!???!?!?!!!??!?!!

I don't even know what they're selling anymore, since the subject line no longer says anything like "Ćăńąďĩāņ PĥăŕmąčŶ" or "V*I*A*G*R*A."

Now the subject line is invariably something cryptic, like a couple of randomly selected words. It makes me wonder if it's supposed to grab my attention.

ME: "Oooh, someone sent me an email about tire heart. I love tire heart! I think I'll read it and follow any link/business advice/pharmaceutical nonsense it may or may not contain."

Nope. It just makes me angry.

Kinda makes me wish Senator Ted Stevens (R-Idiot) would do something about the spammers clogging my intertubes.

If it's so all-fired important that AT&T is able to tier the "internets" (I love politicians, thanks GW) because one of our senators thinks the internet is a series of interconnected tubes, why can't we get them to pass a law requiring forced castration of spammers?

C'mon, Ted! May I call you Ted? No? Okay.

C'mon you shortsighted, uninformed moron! Stop kowtowing to corporate cronies (who are doing just fine financially, btw) and start representing the people who were smooth-brained enough to elect you to your exalted office.

And nooooo, I'm not talking about bridges to nowhere, or helping sonny-boy catch fish either (if you know what I mean).

Wait. Seriously, everybody. Why is this guy still allowed to have a hand in the policy of our country?

It's mind-boggling.

I'll settle with all you Alaskans out there. I'll quietly give in, and pay my share of the billions you apparently need to build bridges to islands nobody lives on, if you'll vote this tube-head out of office.


I thought not.