Saturday, October 18, 2008


One of my escapes is to watch HGTV. I don't have a natural decorating sense and am in awe of those who do. I have picked up decorating tips, color ideas, and accessorizing thoughts from this show. What also appeals to me is that many of the houses redecorated are not million dollar houses but middle class homes. This means the ideas and applications are within the realm of possibility for me.

House Hunters are episodes I find fascinating. House prices vary so much across the US and this program also gives glimpses of housing markets in other countries. From watching this show I realize that living in Wisconsin means my housing prices are very very reasonable. In central Wisconsin one can buy a decent house for $170,000. I have watched people on House Hunters buy run down, virtually unlivable homes for $300,000! There may be things I don't like about Wisconsin (winter) but cost of living is very reasonable.

I must not be alone in my addiction to this show because most women I know also love HGTV. I think part of it is an interest in seeing how others taking a walk at night, looking into an uncurtained front window of a home and catching a glimpse of the room decorating. HGTV allows us to be voyeurs and spend legitmate time looking into the homes of others.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

AIG Payback

I contacted two of my Senators and one House representative regarding the $442,000 spa retreat taken by AIG bigwigs. (Senator Kohl voted for the bailout; Senator Feingold and Represenative Kagen voted against it) Taking that retreat on top of golden parachutes is a slap in the face to the average tax payer who cannot affort such vacations but who are footing the cost of the payout.

Senator Kohl and Representative Kagen's offices took my phone number and address so I can be contacted with a response. Okay. Senator Feingold's office at least talked to me about the situation. That aide told me he wasn't sure there was anything legal that could be done to AIG for spending the money on the spa but that the Senate is conducting hearings into the matter. I suggested that these unethical individuals who obviously have no moral compass will leave the Senate chambers laughing at how they got away with the scam.

Today it has been reported that Eastern Oregon Representative Greg Walden and 48 other U.S. House Representatives co-signed a letter to Secretary Henry Paulson and Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke demanding AIG refund any money it spent on a lavish retreat after it received an $85 billion bailout. I hope their demands are taken seriously.

My question is why AIG can't be asked for the bailout money to be given back? Why should people from that company be given golden parachutes and not expected to use that money to fund their own bailout? If the Senate demands the money what is AIG going to do---sue the government? Good luck with that.

The gall and cavalier attitude of those directors in taking that vacation should infuriate every taxpayer, elected official, and US leaders. The offenders should receive more than a slap on the hand; they should have to feel the pinch the average citizen is feeling.

For heaven's sake, Martha Stewert went to jail for her insider trading. I doubt her mistake cost thousands/millions their retirement funds. These executives who have thumbed their noses at us need to be punished.

Monday, October 13, 2008

John Cleese Poetry

John Cleese wrote this poem about Sean Hannity. Sums up my opinion of Hannity!

Ode to Sean Hannity

Aping urbanity
Oozing with vanity
Plump as a manatee
Faking humanity
Journalistic calamity
Intellectual inanity
Fox Noise insanity
You’re a profanity


Bursts of yellow, orange, rust in flowers and leaves
Cloudless sapphire skies
Hazy filtered sunlight, warmth tinged with crispness
Apple sweet and dry decay mingled
Scurrying squirrels over fallen leaves and acorns
Spices of pumpkin and leaf smoke

Appreciate the moment don't dread the future cold
Preserve a burst of yellow leaves to
View in dead white winter

Seasonal cycles give variety
But I could live forever in fall
Always bathed in golds and soft warmness.