Friday, April 27, 2012


I have never understood why people buy stock in airlines.  Every airline seems to go bankrupt (and wipe out all equity) every 10 years.  But it isn't all the fault of the airlines.  The taxes and fees are extremely onerous.  See below for a flight that I just booked to Salzburg, Austria.

Flight $911.00
Expedia booking fee $7.00
Taxes and fees
Best Rate Guarantee Logo Total: 

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Nomadic dog

For several years neighbors on the next street have allowed their dog (a Sheltie) to just roam the neighborhood, peeing and pooping in the yards of everyone else, not to mention getting our dogs whipped up by an unrestrained intruder on their territory.  Not only is it completely irresponsible for a pet owner (the next street has a lot more traffic that goes a lot faster), it is just not neighborly behavior.

Last year, my wife registered a complaint with the police department, and an officer went and spoke with them.  Nothing changed.  I called again today to register another complaint, and the officer was very sympathetic.  He told me this story (not exact quotes):
"I totally understand.  My neighbor does the same thing.  Just last night I looked out and saw his dog taking his umpteenth crap in my yard.  So I went out, picked it up, and went over to the neighbors' house and rang the bell.  I said to him 'your dog seems to like crapping in my yard more than your yard, so I thought that I should return this.  Where do you want me to put it?"
I think that I find the right person to help us.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Let the horse race begin

Obviously, I am an independent. Also, since being eligible to vote, my vote has been a barometer in every election. I voted Reagan (84), Bush 41 (88), Clinton (92 and 96), Bush 43 (00 and 04), and Obama (08). A cynic might conclude that I read the political winds and vote accordingly, but I would beg to differ. Neither of Bush 43's wins were foregone conclusions by election day by any stretch of the imagination. Instead, I would argue that my votes are all the empirical evidence that you need that independents decide every election.

That is the lead-in to the first Gallup Daily tracking poll --
PRINCETON, NJ -- Mitt Romney is supported by 47% of national registered voters and Barack Obama by 45% in the inaugural Gallup Daily tracking results from April 11-15. Both Obama and Romney are supported by 90% of their respective partisans. . .

These results are the first from Gallup Daily tracking of registered voters' general election preferences, which began on April 11 and will be reported daily on on the basis of continuous five-day rolling averages. . .

The race breaks down into the expected patterns by party, with 90% of Democrats supporting Obama, and 90% of Republicans supporting Romney. The Republican results show that despite the rancor and divisiveness of the Republican campaign, the vast majority of Republicans are backing Romney in the head-to-head battle with Obama, as they have in ballot tests earlier this year.

The crucial voting bloc of independents breaks toward Romney by 45% to 39%, giving the GOP challenger his slight overall edge.

Right now, unlike the slight majority of independents, I'm leaning Obama. But I'm ready to listen to Romney's sales pitch over the next 4 1/2 months.