Mike Rowse A voice from New Mexico


Boeing layoffs, something different

Boeing executives announced on Friday that the company will have to lay off 800 machinists this year; most of the workers had been slated to work on Boeing's commercial aircraft but some will come from the defense side due to budget 'cuts'. This was completely unexpected as Boeing has won several new contracts this past year and analysts along with company personnel expected Boeing's business to soar this year. The 800 layoffs will bring the total to between 2,000 and 2,300 with previously announced reductions for 2013.

What was interesting about this particular announcement and really stood out for me as an indicator of where our economy really is, was that execs at Boeing said the reductions would come among the newest hires, younger workers with less seniority. For the most part over the last few years, when a company has announced layoffs or reductions in the size of their staff, they have said they would reduce workforce size through normal attrition or by offering early retirement.

But now we are seeing more and more what I would call true layoffs with the newest hires being let go rather than other methods of staff reduction that lessened the pain so to speak. To me that's a sign of where our economy really is and it's not in good shape. Companies have already cut their employee force down to bare bones, which in some cases is not really bare bones but comparatively is lean, but now these companies are really letting people go that they need, even with bright prospects for the future. Whether it's because of Obamacare, excessive government regulations or concerns about the overall economy we are now getting to where recession is not the real danger but depression is more and more likely. This may just be the first of many layoffs to come this year.

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Just so you know

It is not being widely reported in U.S. news outlets aka the mainstream media but the violence in the Middle East, especially towards Israel is escalating. It's almost a daily occurrence that Hamas or Hezbollah are firing grenades or rockets into civilian neighborhoods in Israel. Israel then retaliates. That's been going on for years. Iran has been supporting both terror groups for a long time but in the past several months has become much more active and open in their support of anti-Israeli activities. The drone that Israel shot down over Israeli territory was an Iranian helicopter drone flown by Hezbollah. Iran has been providing more and more weaponry to both groups. Then last week we found out Sudan's government has begun building missiles for Iran; the plants were blown up by what is believe to be Israeli fighters.

Sudanese President Omar Bashir vowed to take decisive action against Israel, calling all Israeli interests legitimate targets. Early today, Palestinian forces fired Grad missiles at Israel's nuclear reactor in Dimona. The missiles missed their target, thankfully but exploded in the Ramat Negev district just south of the reactor. The Israeli Air Force hit a rocket battery in the Gaza Strip, from which Hamas had fired the missiles. This shows us a couple of things; Palestinian Hamas has decided to expand their target area to include a nuclear reactor and is allowing Iran to use Hamas and the Gaza Strip as it's southern operational arm, much like the Iranians are using Hezbollah in the north.

If history is any indicator, and intelligence officials say it is, Hamas will continue to target not only the nuclear reactor but also Israeli air force bases and the U.S. X-band radar station in Negev. Traditionally, Hamas doesn't have very accurate weapons and must fire several 'test' rounds in order to dial in their ultimate target, so you can expect Hamas to continue firing missiles until they get it right or Israel decides enough is enough and opens up a serious can of whoop-a** on Hamas.

An Iranian drone had been able to fly over the reactor building and photograph the building and it's air defense systems on Oct. 6th. Intelligence officials say that information was given to Hamas to help them with this missile attack.

One final note, Egypt had brokered an informal cease fire between Hamas and Israel in observance of the Eid al-Adha festival which started on Friday. Hamas violated that truce by firing 4 Grad rockets at Beersheba on Saturday.

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More of the same

The news today is pretty much the same; Obama's lips moved and he lied. The violence in the Middle East continues to escalate. Iran is getting steel from Georgia in exchange for coal in violation of U.N. sanctions. Syria's Assad agrees to a cease fire with the rebels for EID observance, then attacks rebel strongholds. A gay man in WI is beaten and hospitalized because he was working for the GOP campaigns; media fails to call it a hate crime; a VA Senator's son resigns from his father's campaign after being caught on tape advising a poll worker how to vote for 100 people who don't vote; yet there is not any voter fraud to worry about. Obama puts out a pamphlet with his 2nd term agenda but even CNN's pundits call it boring and unrevealing; a rehash of what he's done in his first term.

Call me when something exciting happens; I'll be in my backyard building a fallout shelter.

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Stuff that makes you go hmmm

Just some interesting facts; because if it's on the internet, it must be true, right?

The location of the world's tallest tree, "Hyperion", is kept a secret from all but a few select scientists.

50 of the 83 restaurants featured on the TV show, Kitchen Nightmares, have been sold or shutdown.

In 2010, Tokyo officials went to congratulate the oldest man in the city on his 111th birthday. Instead, they found a 30 year old skeleton. The family was still drawing his pension. Awkward.

The average NFL game features just 10 minutes 43 seconds of action. Commercials account for nearly 60 minutes of the three hour broadcast. And when the game is actually on, more time is spent showing replays or shots of players standing around.

Maybe Michelle Obama should rethink her war on fast food. Robert Downey Jr. claims Burger King saved his life. During a stop at a BK in 2003 with his car full of dope, he ate a burger that was, in his opinion, so disgusting, that it made him rethink his life. He then threw all the drugs in the ocean and got sober.

An anonymous donor pays for the college education of every student in Kalamazoo, MI. Better not tell the government someone is doing it without their help.

Pete Conrad's first words on the Moon were said in order to win a $500 bet; proving astronauts were not given a script of what to say when stepping off the ladder.

Hippo milk is pink.

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Maybe we’ll get answers now

The Mars Lander made it safely onto the surface of the Red Planet in yet another stunning feat by NASA. Think about it; if just one little thing goes wrong, if the rocket is off by a millimeter in it's trajectory and we don't catch it soon enough, then the vehicle completely misses Mars. If the chute doesn't deploy or the capsule lands on a big rock... but the Lander is out and sending back photos and appears to be working correctly.

While the scientists at NASA and JPL are talking about finding evidence of life on Mars, microscopic evidence that some life form such as a microbe, used to live there I know the real object of their search; real life on Mars right now; beings of some type. Think I'm wrong? I have relatives working at JPL; they've been there for 30 years.

Remember the dual rovers, Opportunity & Spirit; those rovers were expected to last for 6-12 months, primarily because of the loss of power. The Martian wind storms were going to cover the solar panels with dust and dirt; having no way to clean them off eventually the dirt would build up and the batteries wouldn't stay charged from the solar energy. But amazingly, Opportunity continued to work, in fact 7 years later Opportunity is still exploring the planet's surface. Scientists were amazed that somehow the solar panels, which showed evidence of becoming dirty and producing low levels of power, would be clean after the emerging from the dark side of the planet.

That is, as Mars turned on its axis and the rover was lost to our 'eyes' something was happening to clean off the solar panels. There is only one explanation; beings are sneaking out at night at wiping down the panels. Even when Spirit became 'hopelessly' stuck in a crater, unable to climb out due to loose sand, it miraculously appeared at the top of the crater one morning. So, we may never get the truth from NASA but I know there is life on Mars and Lander is going to find it, take its photo and we'll know who our new overlords are...

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Taking a break…

For the next 8 days, I get to do something that every father would relish: I'll be hiking with my daughter in the Grand Canyon, Zion National Park and Bryce Canyon. She just graduated high school and we'll get to spend some fun time before she heads off into the world. So posts will be sporadic for the next few days; I'll have a laptop with me and there's wireless everywhere these days but that's not the point is it?

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Must be nice…

It must really nice to be able to say anything you want and not have the MSM or your supporters care about the factual accuracy. Can you imagine if your wife believed you as easily as people believe Obama, even if there was video or audio evidence? You could do ANYTHING and get away with it.

The latest is the Obama campaign's attack ad against Romney blaming him for layoffs at GST Steel in Kansas City. GST Steel was owned by Bain Capital, which was Romney's investment company. But here's the real deal. The layoffs at GST Steel occurred in 2001; Romney left Bain in 1999. 2 years is an eternity in the business world and it's unlikely Romney or anyone else at Bain or GST was thinking about layoffs 2 years ahead of time. Those decisions were made long after Romney left Bain.

Remember also that the U.S. steel industry was in a downturn nationwide. Many companies in the steel industry were laying off workers since the U.S. government had enacted so many regulations that U.S. steel companies could not compete with the likes of China.

But guess who was at Bain Capital when GTS laid all those workers off and shut down the mill? Jonathan Lavine. Lavine joined Bain in 1993 and is currently the Managing Director and Chief Investment Officer. He was a director in 2001. He is also a major bundler for the Obama campaign, raising between $100-200K for Obama's 2008 campaign. We don't know the specific influence or involvement Lavine had in the GTS decision but as CIO and a director he was certainly aware of the decision, likely involved in the decision and absolutely had more influence than Romney did. Maybe Lavine could raise some money for those steelworkers he laid off...

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Off line for a few days…

We are going to be, most likely, away from the computer for a few days. But don't worry we'll be back and if we find a computer, we'll check in to see what's going on and surprise, will probably have a comment or two to make...

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Monday morning funnies

Did you ever notice the things we really don't like about other people are the things we don't like in ourselves? Gary Chaplin was a highly paid head hunter in England; "was" being the operative word. Gary responded to an email from a guy looking for a job; an email sent to 4,000 recruiters at the same time. Gary thought this was rude and let the job seeker know in no uncertain terms that his inability to use the "bcc feature in order to make him feel unique and special" meant the job seeker was "too stupid" to work in banking or finance. So does the inability to hit 'reply sender' rather than using 'reply all' make Gary too stupid to work in executive recruitment? Yes it does. Gary is now looking for another $300k a year job where he can demean people.

If a woman tells you she is a doctor and wants to make your penis bigger by injecting something into it, well, you do the math. Justin Street, 22, thought it would be a good idea to visit Kasia Rivera, 34 and allow her to give him a penis enlargement treatment for just $50. She promised him she'd was a licensed physician working out of her home since it was cheaper and she didn't need nurses or other staff. She then injected his manhood with silicone and told him to rest for a day. He's now taking a dirt nap after some of the silicone broke loose and entered his bloodstream causing an embolism. That sucks, not only did he die but at the funeral his rod is going to be tiny again.

If you are going to hide a camera in a public bathroom, you might not want to record yourself doing it; I'm just saying. Police received a call that someone had placed a cell phone in a public, unisex bathroom in the Crossroads shopping center tin St. Cloud MN. Police were not sure they could track the owner as it was a prepaid cell phone but they got a huge break when the viewed the videos stored on the phone's camera. Right there for everyone to see was Joshua Lavalle, 24, recording himself placing the camera, along with commentary on why he was doing it and how much fun it was going to be. Police were able to identify Joshua quickly as he'd been caught doing it before... stupid is as stupid does.

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A new place to live

There's no shortage of people telling the population of planet Earth that we'd better find a new place to live. That doesn't mean there's a consensus on why we have to find a new planet. Some believe aliens will attack Earth in their search for life sustaining resources; others believe an alien race is really God and they've been watching us develop as a species and will probably end their experiment at some point in the future by killing us all. Al Gore believes we will destroy our planet by emitting too many greenhouse gasses. More realistically, scientists say it's just a matter of time before some random asteroid rams into Earth again we won't see the sun again for a very long time. Thus the search for a new place to inhabit, assuming of course we can dominate the species already on the floating orb.

Researchers operating NASA's Kepler space telescope have announced the discovery of the first seriously potentially inhabitable planet in another system. Kepler has been operational for about 16 months now and has discovered about 2300 new planets, some of which have to be confirmed as planets and not floating rocks similar to Pluto. Right now scientists have confirmed the existence of 700 other planets. While there are several dozen potential planets, or candidates, that may be inhabitable, this is the first to be confirmed as having met the base requirements; in a solar system with characteristics such as ours; the planet it the right distance from its sun; being about the same size as Earth; all things that indicate the planet could have liquid water, temperature and other climate conditions that could sustain life as we know it.

Given that the planet is a long way away it's probably prudent that we start preparing now to leave for the Goldilocks planet, as scientists are calling the potential new home. Anyone up for building a space ark in their back yard? Maybe the redneck rocket scientists on the History Channel, they seem pretty smart and good at building things out of useless stuff. God knows there's a lot of useless stuff sitting in trailer parks in the south.

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