My readers know how absolutely asinine I believe it is that individuals who live and work in these United States continue to cling to the native language spoken in their wretched homelands. In no other country in the world would these people be tolerated to such a large extent as they are in the U.S. Why? Because they will work for cheap. And cheap, even if service and quality are inferior, is what makes money for today's heart-less, soul-less and country-less multi-national corporations. Yesterday morning, I halted my efforts in the middle of typing a scorching letter to my mortgage company whose own customer service people cannot seem to understand that when I issue them the authority to debit my checking account two weeks prior to the due date, I expect them to debit my account on that precise day, not five days later. Anyway, since I had an extra five dollars or so to burn, and my ample stomach, being scored by my cowboy belt buckle, was growling like a Klingon at a Tupperware Party, I stopped my barrage on the mortgage company and scurried down to my local McDonald's for that morning taste treat: a 'steak and egg breakfast bagel.' Unfortunately, I arrived there only ten minutes before the immutable 'end of breakfast time.' (Gawd, I love the movie "Falling Down!" If you've seen it, you know what I'm talking about.) During my way too long wait, every instance in which the counter person was not facing me, she was speaking Spanglish to the rest of the crew! Most people of any nationality consider that a slap-in-the-face insult. I know I do. What the hell is wrong with speaking English 100% of the time when you are at your labors in front of the English speaking customer's who pay your salary? When I saw her pass the third meal to the third person who had sat down since service was so slow, and seeing it was already 10:30AM, I quickly left for Carl's Junior. As I pulled up to the drive-in speaker and tried to order a breakfast meal, I was instantly rebuked, because sadly, it was now past 10:30. So I ordered a Western Star and a large Coke in the freaky shaped plastic cup instead. The female voice emanating from the speaker asked me the same question three times leaving me to finally plead, "I can't understand you." As I picked up my greasy, gut-wrenching meal (with bacon, yet) at the second window, I thought again of the decades-long push that the American education cabal has maintained to be sure that all American's learn to speak fluent Spanish. We learn to speak Spanish so lawless corporations and franchises can hire cheap, non-English speaking illegal aliens from Mexico to wait on us. To give us crappy service and salmonella, while we strain our auditory channels and patience to understand what they are saying, in order that the anonymous businesses' stockholders might receive one penny more in their dividend checks. September 8th, 2001: WWJD = What Would Jesus Drive ?
WWJD? Being my kid attends a private Christian school (at a cost of $6,500 per year not counting books, trips, any extras or even the possibility of a ride on a yellow bus to and from campus every day)and upon entering the packed parking lot, I am visually barraged with Volvos, Mercedes, Escalades, Porsches, convertible BMW's, Suburbans, Chrysler vans and other vehicles displaying the "WWJD?" decal. Or using a "WWJD?" stenciled frame to hold their photo radar defeating translucent cover tightly over their license plate. I assumed years ago that "WWJD?" was the abbreviation for "What Would Jesus Drive?" Well, apparently I'm not the only one, for the folks over at the August 27th, 2001 Autoweek magazine thought the same. Plus, they've come up with answers to the urgent question, "What would Jesus drive?" (created by Roy Rivenburg used with permission.)
One theory is that Jesus was in a Plymouth because, "The Bible says God drove Adam and Eve out of the Garden of Eden in a Fury." In Psalm 83, the Almighty clearly owns a Pontiac and a Geo as the passage urges Him to "Pursue your enemies with your Tempest and terrify them with your Storm." Some scholars insist Jesus drove a Honda, but didn't like to talk about it: In St. John's gospel Christ tells a crowd, "For I did not speak of my own Accord . . ." And following the Master's lead, the Apostles car-pooled in a Honda because as scholars well know, "The Apostles were in one Accord."August 31st, 2001: Feds Conspire with Banks to Create Untold Wealth !
Wells Fargo recently increased their 'overdraft fee' seven percent, from $27 per occurrence to $29. To refresh your memories (hah!) the monolithic bank industry typically charges its customers an 'overdraft fee' every time a check is presented that is greater than the balance in that account. AND then, in an arcane procedure, they sometimes choose to cover the check (make it good) and sometimes they choose to bounce it, which usually results in yet another $25 fee directly to you from the vendor where you presented the check to purchase your box of frozen wieners. So, for a check that draws your account down below a positive number, say by only $1.83, as in my own recent case, the bank charges you $29. If defined as 'interest' rather than a 'fee' (since in this case it translates to the bank loaning me $1.83 for a few days) that $29 'overdraft fee' computes to a staggering 5,769% rate of interest! To put this spectacular interest rate into an everyday perspective, consider if a family owed a $100,000, 7%, 30 year mortgage on their home. Where normally their monthly payment would be $665, at 5,769% interest, their monthly payment would rocket to an astronomical $547,960! Of course, there are two ways to avoid this fee (a 'fee' which recent figures reveal composes as much as 37% of many banks net profits) one could always maintain a cushion of $100 or more in the account to cover any unrecorded or forgotten checks, scheduled automatic payments and invisible bank fees and charges. The other way is to sign up for your bank's credit card and tie that card's credit balance into your checking account in order to cover any checking overdrafts. And here's the really sly part, where Congress and The Banks have conspired to rape both the average American male and female. For, if you cannot qualify for your particular bank's credit card and suggest (as I did) that instead you keep one hundred or more dollars in a savings account and tie that savings account's actual cash dollar balance (not credit, but actual greenbacks) into your checking account to cover unintended overdrafts . . . you quickly discover, that per federal law, drafted by our cunning Congress, it is illegal to enable any FDIC insured interest bearing account, ie., a 'savings account,' to transfer dollars into a checking account in order to cover overdrafts and thereby avoiding the bank 'fee!' August 30th, 2001: "My Kid is on the Honor Roll !" So What?!
Yesterday I was listening to a talk radio discussion about how today's schools are populated by sleazy-dressing young girls (whose low rider jeans just barely keep the guinea pig from jumping out) when I heard a mother justify her daughter's revealing attire by proudly proclaiming, "She's on the honor roll." B.F.D. lady. How the hell does intelligence relate to whether a gal or guy dresses like a slut or a gangster? I'll bet you that Madonna has a higher I.Q. than Mr. Wonderful, but I'll also wager she has millions of more spirochetes drilling into her tissues. (For those educated in public schools, that means she has contracted various diseases from the copious and diverse amounts of bodily fluids she has injested during her frequent sexual couplings with others.) And that's my point. Public education. To be on the Honor Roll in many of our high schools requires nothing beyond occupying a desk. My daughter, Ms. Wonderful, went to a high school in Scottsdale, Arizona that brags on having the highest SAT scores of any high school in the state. When my cherub attended this school, and I believe she may possess the I.Q. of a genius, she scored 'A-pluses.' However, after I took a tour of the school, during the day, when the kids and the staff were there, I walked away disgusted. The next year my girl attended a private school, where her grades, now burdened with the need to study and complete homework, plummeted to merely 'C-pluses.' That experience, among other facts unknown to most parents, have lead me to totally discount the phrase "She's on the honor roll," when that honor roll is composed of children attending any public school. August 24th, 2001: Regrets, I Have a Few ...
With a nod to Frank, I begin today's column. On August 1st, 2001 I began my first paid hourly job since I signed up for my last paid hourly job thirty one years ago again on the first of August. Back in 1969, as an insane eighteen year old in possession of a union job at Revlon I was earning $3.26 an hour. Adjusting for inflation, I've taken a mere $17.33 an hour pay cut over the last three decades. Tell me that God doesn't have a sense of humor, eh? In 1991, my corporation, founded in the 1950s, dissolved and left me without a job but comforted by a fairly well-paying non-compete contract. Mrs. Wonderful and I decided that she re-enter the workforce, for a short while, as I panned for our next gold strike. A 'short while' turned out to be ten years and due to my profligateness, I too have presently entered the work-a-day world pretty much at the rock bottom. The only professions more despised and joked about than my current one are, used car dealer, lawyer and California politician. However, during my 'retirement' from 1991 to 2001, I have been blessed with the personal freedom of not having to kowtow to anyone not packing iron, (a sidearm) and I have witnessed and participated in events of my school-age children's lives that few parents piloting the latest Boxster or 7-Series Beemer can ever savor. Sure, I should have 'invested wisely' and gotten a degree or two in the stack of years I've been playing the housewife. But, I'm alive in the wealthiest, most prosperous and freedom loving nation in the history of the planet. And, with me turning 50 today, I'm looking forward, with an optimistic heart to another 50 years ... of course, winning the $300 million Powerball lottery this Friday sure would help. August 15th, 2001: " Bwaaa, Bwaaa, Bwaaa cries the California Consumer "
Reading in the August 13th, 2001 latimes.com I learned of the 'dire' straits that all-electric homes have placed the California homeowner in. 'Baseline Allocation' is mentioned again and again, so I had to venture over to the California Public Utilities Commission for a definition of this arcane-to-Arizonan's term. "The 'baseline quantity' is an allocation of electricity that is billed at a lower rate for residential customers. The 'baseline' amount is determined by the CPUC based on the number of days, season, climatic region, and whether your primary heating source is gas or electricity." Whew! Any electricity used above the 'baseline allocation' is billed at higher rate. (Here in Scottsdale, Arizona, I set my own 'baseline rate' by allowing my load controller to automatically start shutting down electrical devices whenever my demand exceeds 11 kilowatts.) The article details how various convulsive California consumers are coping with higher electrical rates. The writer implies that if the electrical industry hadn't 'oversold' the all electric home concept, and homeowners today had a mix of natural gas and electricity, residential utility bills would be lower. Apparently forgotten is that natural gas is also used to generate most of California's electricity and the added demand of millions of individually plumbed natural gas homes couldn't do anything but cause an explosion in the cost of natural gas as consumers compete against the electrical utilities for the same commodity. Any moron who had radiant heat installed in the ceiling, a fad from the 60s and 70s should have his head examined, for on it's face, even to the most very ignorant of individuals (aka, someone from Arkansas) this type of heating is incredibly inefficient as is any radiant heat. We read how with soaring electric bills, California electrical consumers are cutting off all heat, affixing timers to water heaters and hanging curtains to partition unused areas of their homes. Big effing deal. Since, being an Arizonan adult, I set my own 'baseline allocation' without any government interference and have implemented the same conservation efforts for decades. In addition, during the day, the north rooms and the south rooms of my 3400 square foot abode, are cooled to a 'frosty' 85F (29.4C) with seven oscillating fans providing some relief from today's 105F (40.5C) humidity laden heat. I had extra insulation installed in my walls and ceilings, a solar water heater strapped to my roof, two very efficient high SEER-rated heatpumps (which supply both heat and refrigerated air) replaced my worn out 1980s units. Also, window tinting and rolling shutters grace the glass of all my west facing windows. Bwaaa, Wwaaa, go the California homeowners. Ah, shut up, it's time you all joined the real world like the rest of us. Bunch of pussies! August 10th, 2001: MW Dislocates Shoulder Patting Self on Back !
After replying to an email, which may have resided in my Eudora inbox for close to a day, I soon received another from the same young lady. It ended with, "Thank you for your quick reply. Chelsea Clinton" I'm not sure about the 'Chelsea' part or not, but the quick part always surprises me. It surprises me because your Mr. Wonderful, in an attempt to uncover the juiciest worldwide news stories, is constantly communicating with individual sources, newspapers, corporations, competitors, writers, reporters and universities on the WEB. And what do you imagine is the most common response to MY queries? Nothing. Nada. Zilch. Zero. I am perplexed by that because I generate my own HTML code, I photograph, scan and ftp my own original photos, I research my own articles, I edit my own writing, I update on a regular basis my "Current Events" and "Politics" pages (which now number over 300) I also update daily a 10+ megabyte web site over on the left side of the political spectrum, I clean my own system of viruses, I repair the damage any viruses have caused, I load and trouble-shoot my own software, I connect to a no-charge ISP through a 28.8k modem, while, at the same time fighting over a single PC with Mrs. Wonderful, who is working on a Master's Degree in conjunction with an 'electronic university', and Mr. Wonderful III who advises me that he is the baddest of the bad with WarCraft Battle.netII! On top of that I have a full time job and act in community theater. And furthermore I do it all (except for the full-time job) for free. Nothing. Nada. Zilch. Zero. And somehow, I find time to answer all my (non-threatening) email within a 24 hour period. What the f##k exactly are these people doing who I am emailing? Open heart surgery with one hand, brain surgery with the other? Why do they even make public their email addresses if they have no intention of answering lucid questions and requests from the humble and world-renowned Mr. Wonderful? One consequence of the World Wide Web is that the 'oh-so-busy' drones holding a #2 pencil of the Industrial Age are apparently simply morphed into the 'way-more-oh-so-busy' drones trembling at QWERTY keyboards within our 21st Century Computer Age. July 30th, 2001: W32 Sircam.worm@mm Virus Slams MW's PC !
So, you're saying to yourself, "How can a guy who's been written about in the foremost hacker publication on the planet fall prey to a computer virus? One word, 'social engineering.' Okay, it's two words. A known friend issued an email to my son: "Hi! How are you? I send you this file in order to have your advice. See you later, thanks." This email was accompanied by an executable file (any file ending in .com or .exe) which, only after picking through the bugger with Norton Anti-Virus 4.0 (last updated in May of 2001) Mr. Wonderful III opened. Later that same day, after my computer intuition, honed almost to a point, sniffed out a virus, I downloaded the current NAV definitions. I soon found the 5 megabyte download contained an update to detect this W32SirCam virus, albeit, posted a mere twelve days earlier. After wringing my PC through the refurbished NAV program, I was immediately notified of the presence of the W32Sircam.worm@mm virus and offered the option to delete it. Which is the option I took. Deletion. The only problem is, that once you delete the files infected by the virus, no programs will run! This was due to the fact, that one of the things this virus does, is to instruct your computer that it must locate and run the file "SirCam32.exe" to start any programs. A file which I just deleted! Confiscating my wife's laptop, I logged onto the brilliant Symantec 'Security Updates' page. Once there, I should have read the entire page, for then I would have simply downloaded the 'removal tool' for the W32Sircam.worm@mm virus. Rather, in my haste, I deleted the virus manually and so now was forced to expend 90 MS-DOS minutes editing my Windows registry, undoing the changes the virus had made, and entering the called for data. At the NAV W32.SirCam.Worm@mm site I learned, that among other nefarious things, this virus may erase all of drive C or fill all free space with garbage. However, usually it just reads your email address list, grabs a random document from your Window's Word files and begins to mail itself (as an attachment) and your document with the greeting shown at the beginning of this article: "Hi! How are you?" I'm pissed, that's how I am.
July 28th, 2001: 'Surprise' Ending of Planet of the Apes Revealed !
If you've been wondering what all the hubbub is about Matt Drudge revealing the ending to Tim Burton's "Planet of the Apes" movie, I've finally located the Drudge page that has so distressed the director. I'm guessing that Burton was trying for the same level of shock contained in the original movie when Charlton Heston first saw the Statue of Liberty and realized that he was back on Earth. Drudge reports that many in the preview audience were upset with Burton's irreverent morphing of an American icon.
July 27th, 2001: Mr. Wonderful Faces Polygraph !
As conditions of my continued employment with the NSA, CIA, FBI, and the National Sanitary Engineers Union, just yesterday, I was required (forced) to endure a humiliating "lie detector" test. Why humiliating? Because, in front of a total stranger, I was coerced to recall every single transgression in virtually every area of my life spanning my entire fifty years of consciousness. The polygraph instrument itself, with the needles nowadays scrolling across a color monitor rather than graphing paper, measures changes in your breathing, pulse rate, blood pressure and sweat. Supposedly a technician schooled in the arcane ways of the "lie detector" machine can separate the truth from lies. Bullshit! When I entered through the unmarked door of the Polygraph Palace, I was met with four pages of blank lines and empty blocks, that along with the usual identifying information, requested a "yes" or "no" answer to a gross of questions. Questions ranging from "Have you ever stolen from an employer?" to "Do you have employment applications pending with other employers?" After I finished answering, the technician led me to a back room and prior to being wired up, although while I was sitting in 'the chair', clarified my answers. For instance if I had supplied an affirmative answer to the theft question, "Have you ever stolen from an employer?" he would change the question to, "Other than the time you told me, have you ever stolen from an employer?" Going through this list is the humiliating part. As I was forced to decant every instance over decades and decades of my sinful behavior. I innocently supplied detailed answers so that I could 'tell the truth' once I was wired up. Like a dolt, I did not realize that this is just another means for the polygrapher and the employer to ferret out more information than I would normally willingly reveal. Especially to a total stranger! While being plugged, cuffed and strapped, I was told that there would be "no trick questions," which was the first LIE in the process! Once restrained by the numerous wires, cords and attachments leading from the polygraph octopus, I attempted to sit perfectly still, afraid that I couldn't remain still enough, for, any slight movement affects the readings of this 21st Century Witch Doctor. As related by William Poundstone in his 1983 book, Big Secrets, I faced three categories of questions. 1) Relevant: Did you kill Chandra Levy? 2) Control: Have you ever grabbed a girl's arm hard? and 3) Irrelevant: Are we in Phoenix, Arizona? The denial of the intentionally broad 'control' question is always assumed to be a lie. A lie which is painted out in a line of pixels whose ups and downs portray Windows 2000's snapshot of a 'lie.' The 'relevant' question is the actual question they desire the answer to, while the 'irrelevant' questions are ones to give your breathing, blood pressure, heart rate and such, time to return to normal. Any of my answers that mimicked the previously graphed lines of an answer to a 'control' question, would be assumed to be lies. Of course, they don't say "lie!" They say, "reaction."
What's wrong with this test? 1) Innocent individuals are demeaned and treated as if they are criminals (a judgment you will agree with once you've faced such a test) 2) An expert liar (any D.C. politician) or a sociopath (most D.C. politicians) will not register "reactions" ie., "lies." 3) Delusional individuals, who earnestly believe that they are telling the truth will also pass. 4) Ingestion of certain drugs prior to the test can insure a passing grade. 5) Extremely honest individuals, like Mr.Wonderful, will be traumitized during the questioning, constantly worrying whether they are telling the 100% God's honest truth or not. 6) Anita Hill passed a polygraph test during the Clarence Thomas hearings 'proving' she was telling the truth about the lies she was testifying to.Quoting from The Skeptic's Dictionary by Robert Todd Carroll: "The reason the polygraph is not a lie detector is because what it measures--changes in heartbeat, blood pressure, and respiration--can be caused by many things. Nervousness, anger, sadness, embarrassment and fear can all be causal factors in altering one's heart rate, blood pressure or respiration rate. . . . There are also a number of medical conditions such as colds, headaches, constipation, or neurological and muscular problems which can cause the physiological changes measured by the polygraph. . . . Even if the device measures nervousness, one cannot be sure that the cause of the nervousness is fear of being caught in a lie. Some people may fear that the machine will indicate they are lying when they are telling the truth and that they will be falsely accused of lying." (See my point '5' above!) To defeat the lie detector, simply place a thumb tack inside your shoe beneath your big toe. Upon recognizing a 'control' question, with a quick and invisible curl of your toe, impale it onto the sharpness hidden in the darkness of your size ten wingtips. July 14th, 2001: Anti-Tobacco Zealots Denigrate Phillip Morris !
Anybody who is blessed to know Mr.Wonderful is aware of the fact that I believe cigarette smoking and tobacco chewing are two incredibly insane and dangerous passions indulged in by only the weak-willed. Pipe and cigar smoking come in a close third and fourth. In 1971, without the 'Patch', without Prozac® and without peer counseling, I ended a deadly five-pack-a-day cigarette habit using only my guts and buckets of frosty Coors Light®. That said, I note the recent television ad featuring a pencil-drawn talking alligator berating the Phillip Morris Company for providing sorely needed humanitarian services worldwide. Like the Pro-Life whack-job who murders an abortionist while protesting the murder of the unborn, these Anti-Tobacco fireballs attack Phillip Morris for their quasi-altruistic and expensive ventures into humanitarianism. Understand that these Anti-Tobacco tyrants would rather wish desperate and helpless families to perish from starvation or diarrhea or exposure to the elements, than to ever witness the name of an 'evil' tobacco company mentioned on television. Get over it you Anti-Freedom Fighters. Alcohol, animal fats, and tobacco are legal products. The harmful effects of all, certainly tobacco, have been widely known and documented for decades. If adult's or teenager's wish to ignore the indisputable facts that long-term tobacco use creases youthful skin, incinerates wardrobes, divides friendships, denies employment and ends in a wheezing, gurgling, painful and premature death so be it! Kindly allow Phillip-Morris to save hundreds of lives and expend millions of dollars with their disaster relief programs in exchange for a few fleeting seconds of TV time. July 1st 2001: No Smoking So, Please Extinguish that X5 !
The price for impressing your neighbor's, coworker's, and friend's, now carries an added non-financial risk. Bob Gritzinger, reporting in the July 2nd, 2001 Autoweek, informs us that the hottest of the mini-SUV's, the BMW X5, is spontaneously combusting. This is due to a faulty radiator cooling fan switch that sometimes fails, causing a fire which then quickly crispies the entire vehicle and all the In & Out Restaurant souvenirs within. Typically this firestorm occurs within the first 200 miles of driving from the home to Scottsdale Fashion Square. But still, for all you pretentious parvenu's residing in Snottsdale and its northern environs, the author suggests that until the under-hood (that's that big piece of metal directly in front of the windshield that has the BMW emblem attached to it) cooling fan switch is replaced, one shouldn't be parking the vehicle within your three car stucco encrusted garage. Elsewhere in the same issue of Autoweek, Mark Vaughn rats on some friggin', free range chicken shit, eco-moron idiot who is surreptitiously slapping on "I'm Changing The Climate!" bumper stickers to huge Detroit-made SUV's. This dolt, by applying these adhesive notices to fine American chrome, is implying that these vehicle's emissions are destroying our climate. However, this sap sucking socialist himself drives a 1987 BMW 3 Series which, at its very best, when meeting the fourteen year old 1987 Federal Emission Standards, pollutes our atmosphere thirty percent more per mile than today's 21st Century Ford Excursion does!