Tuesday, May 31, 2005
Running Dog Reporting for Duty
I am the capitalist running dog economist who just returned to his computer after the holiday weekend. My thoughts were with my late Uncle Dom who flew the Burma Hump in WWII and my two grandfathers who served in the War to End All Wars. One was a submariner. The other was in the artillery in France. Also, the Running Dog household is thankful that Major John has returned home and was not the focus of our Memorial Day.
I want to go on the record stating that Revenge of the Sith is surprisingly good. The first two prequels help the cause by making almost anything strong in comparison, but Sith is better than Return of the Jedi. As my brother pointed out, you need only revisit Return of the Jedi to confirm this. The key is that the Sith business is finally out in the open. The Palpatane/Emperor character is the most interesting part of the film. If Phantom Menace had been less phantom and more menace (told the story from the Sith perspective), then the whole enterprise would have been much improved.
Summer reading? Freakonomics by Levitt and Dubner. It proves that hope endures for the Dismal Science.
Your Capitalist Running Dog
Monday, May 30, 2005
I have heard too much from those that would take political advantage of this (*cough*, Ted Koppel, *cough*). I have also heard from people that would be almost too serious about this - decrying the sales and barbecues as somehow profaning a sacred day. The men in the 2-265 ADA, 3/4 CAV, 1/168th INF and 3/116th INF that died while I was serving with them in Afghanistan would probably have wanted to have people keep their politics out of the day, but they also would have been the first to enjoy a hot steak and a cold beer in the afternoon (after having gone to the appropriate memorial service earlier in the day to be sure).
Thanks for your attention.
Sunday, May 29, 2005
Senior Peon reporting for duty!
Johnson's Theory of Modern Corporate America states that there are really only four rungs on the corporate ladder to speak of: Junior Peons, Senior Peons, Junior Executives, and Senior Executives.
Junior Peons are those who do pretty much all of the actual *work*. Ironically, they're also the ones who typically have the least experience, in all forms of the word. That's where Senior Peons come in.
Senior Peons are those who decide specifically what the Junior Peons should do and then make sure they're doing it. If the Junior Peons don't do their work, the Senior Peons might actually have to do it themselves, and we can't have that. Senior Peons might be highly experienced technical dudes or managers of some type, but trust me, they're all still peons. Senior Peons typically take the fall for anything that goes wrong.
Junior Executives are those who, through either lucky circumstances of birth or extreme sociopathy, have crossed the Class Barrier. They exist to take credit for anything that goes right, shift blame for anything that goes wrong, consume free lunches, and accept stock options, but most importantly, to create a personal empire and justify its existence. I can't begin to explain the staff-hours that are committed to coming up with bizarre Powerpoint presentations for the sole purpose of explaining why each Junior Executive requires more staff and budget. (Junior Executives don't actually *create* those presentations, by the way -- that's what their vast arrays of Senior Peons are for! Really gifted Junior Executives even get their Senior Peons to *present* their justification slide shows for them.)
Senior Executives are those who massage Wall Street to get them to convince people to buy their stock and then use the proceeds to travel around the world giving motivational speeches, accepting honorary degrees, making promises to Senior Executives from other companies that have no connection with reality, and thinking up catchy new slogans.
So I'm a Senior Peon. I have been for probably 2/3 of my "career" following a truly meteoric rise through the ranks of Junior Peondom, and I expect to remain so until I retire or die (q.v. "donut of misery"). See, since I'm not a complete sociopath and I honestly don't have the urge to create a twisted little cult of personality around myself, I really don't have what it takes to ever cross the Great Divide. I'm not wired for it. Sure, the unending gravy train of ill-gotten loot would be great, but I really just want to be able to do good work and stay out of workplace politics. In fact, I've recently moved myself to what I would consider to be a Junior Peon job (except retaining my Senior Peon salary -- woo hoo!), and it's the best thing that's happened to me in at least 6 years.
Sorry for the length. Once I get rollin' on this topic, it's hard to stop myself. Going forward, I'll most likely leave the political material to Major John (he just loves that junk!) and I'll probably focus on tidbits of advice and/or commiseration for you Peons (and perhaps a few really clever Executives).
Right Result - Wrong Reason
Saturday, May 28, 2005
Friday, May 27, 2005
Why I added Iowahawk to the links
What is a Miserable Donut?
Tempus42 has also jumped on board - He is a Senior Peon.
They'll have to explain themselves to all of you.
Thursday, May 26, 2005
Now that you mention it
Chrenkoff - Arthur Chrenkoff is famous for his "Good News" series about the under (or un) reported events in Iraq and Afghanistan. He also posted a few entries from me while I was deployed.
Mudville Gazette - Greyhawk (and Mrs. Greyhawk) provides a good doorway into the world of Milblogs. He also said some nice things about my Instapundit work.
Vodkapundit - "Martini Boy" Green (and Will Collier) runs an interesting site. He also promised to buy me a martini if I made it back from Afghanistan and ever made it out his way. So far he is safe, heh.
Then there were 2...
The links you see: Instapundit - I consider myself one of his Blog kids; Allah - Despite the Allahpundit having some wild ups and downs with the blog experience, he also needs to get some credit as an inspiration; Tim Blair - He posted a lovely apology and compassionate head-tilt photo from me, see props to him too (I won't harp on the vegemite he never sent me...); Protein Wisdom - This simply has to be experienced - words often fail me in trying to describe it.
I anticipate adding more soon (ie. Vodkapundit, Mudville Gazette, Chrenkoff, etc.) but I am just getting started with this whole blog thing.