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Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Road Apples, #58

In the "Duh" Department...Representative Yudichak is proposing a bill that would require state legislators to actually provide receipts for their expense reimbursement. Scranton Times article link HERE. Basically this means that at least some legislators are starting to realize that the gravy train has left the station and will not be coming back. The shame of it all! These folks may actually have to abide by the same common-sense rules that apply to us plebeians. How will they ever survive?

Self-Regulation...Speaking of receipt-less reimbursement, what do the "kids for cash", "midnight pay raise" and "various sundry financial services sector scandals" all have in common? Well among other things, all point to the abject failure that happens every time we allow any group to engage in self-regulation. It doesn't work because it works against human nature. Maybe one day we will learn...

Layoff...I read that a friend of mine lost a job that they had for over twenty years. That's sad stuff. When I started with my current employer years and years ago, a man by the name of Augie Urgola (yes, that is his real name) told me something simple but pretty profound: one of the things that companies do is employ people. His point was, simply put, that the job of a business isn't jut to make money, but to perform this socially redeeming thing called providing employment. Many companies forget this...certainly mine does, especially when you hear that certain executives are in India evaluating off-shoring opportunities. Let's hope that tree bears no fruit.

Shirts...While not profound or noteworthy I am never the less going to note that today I am actually wearing a short-sleeve shirt. Ah, the glory that is Spring! I'm not yet at the point where I need to get my warmer weather clothes down from the attic, but that could be a week or so away.

Big Purchases...stress me out. Growing up in very modest circumstances, I am always worried about money, despite the fact that I am relatively successful with my career. How successful? Successful enough that I what I pay federal income tax is equal to what I got as a starting salary out of college (note: that first job paid horribly). Anyway, big purchases always stress me out, and I have a big purchase on the horizon, namely that I need to start looking for another car. Having another daughter starting college next fall, we will need another vehicle, so my plan is to donate my PT Cruiser to my oldest daughter and have her car then go to my middle daughter. This means that I get another vehicle for myself. I'll probably put some kind of analytical tool together to better identify what I'm looking for, but I do have a few things in mind:

...uber reliable
...good on gas
...a sun roof

More to come on this. It will stress me out though.

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