Category Archives: Government

Rudolph Rewritten

400px-Santa's_army

Santa prepares to quash the rebellion

I watched Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer tonight.  I was troubled by what I saw.

Rudolph’s dad, Donner, was very dissapointed by his newborn son’s glowing nose.  WTF Donner?  Be proud, your lesson learned later in the story doesn’t make up for it.  Donner, you are a bad reindeer and father.

Donner was upset about his boy because he wasn’t going to make the team with a glowing nose.  You see, Santa has these animals and elves so conditioned that all they think about is serving the institution.  Be loyal, do what you’re told and maybe Santa will be pleased.  That’s the sorry life of reindeer and elves and if they don’t like it they will be gone from Christmas Town.

I’m thinking, “Santa, these beings are free thinking souls with limitless capabilities, sounds like you’re trying to run a plantation.  The end doesn’t always justify the means big guy, set these people free, quit brainwashing them from birth.”

Rudolph and his buddy, Herbie were misfits.  The servant-population outcasted and abused Rudolph and Herbie because the skill set they possessed didn’t fit into what was required for service in the institution. Rudy and his friend were cast off into the blistering arctic winter where they encountered unspeakable things.  Most of it wasn’t shown in this kid’s show but I can only imagine what happened to them.  They somehow survived and grew up in the wild.  When they returned everyone needed Rudolph, and the exact thing he was formerly ridiculed for was coveted.  The sad thing was that Rudolph and friend once again became loyal servants to the master.

A better story for our youth could have been about Rudolph and Herbie freeing themselves of the tyranny whilst in the wild.  Realizing who they were and what they were capable of, realizing that there are possibilities outside of servitude.

My ending:

“Rudolph with your nose so bright, won’t you guide my sleigh tonight?”

“No Santa, I won’t.  You see, I don’t work for you.  I wasn’t born to serve you or your cause.  Herbie and I built our own sleigh and we’re getting the hell out of this godforsaken town; we’ve got big things to do, things beyond serving you and your gift giving.  Who’s with me?”

At this point it would be cool if some of the other elves and reindeer rose up against the man, especially considering he was looking at canceling Christmas (the gift part at least).

Perhaps a sequel to my movie would be called Santa’s Civil War.

The Homosexual Cow – A Chick Update

People lined up outside our local Chick fil A, hopefully for the right reasons.

As many of you have seen, popular political pundits called for a Chick fil A day yesterday.  And so it was.

I don’t intend to jump on the political commentary bandwagon.  There are a few important things I need to address since my last post on the subject linked here.

1.  The PR dude died.  I don’t know or care about the cause but I am sympathetic.  You see, good PR guys care very deeply about the organization they represent.  Often their bosses and organization members do things to tarnish the reputation of the brand, despite our [PR guys] advice or tireless preparation.  We take the organization’s reputation personally because it’s our job to and we believe in it.  If PR guys don’t care and believe in their brand, they should leave- good PR is real.

2.  My family attended CFA day. Not because we are opposed to same sex marriage, because we are in favor of non-government agencies being able to represent their own values.  I don’t want to live in a country where values that are in opposition to the accepted norm are forced into silence by the government or anyone else.  Yeah, I got the thousands of comparisons in retort… bottom line, if you are personally opposed to the beliefs of a product or company, just don’t buy it.

Unfortunately, if I was their PR guy, I would have advised the President not to make that statement.  I would have coached him to dance around the issue; my best bosses never listened to that advice.

Anyway, I hope the people that waited in the lines today explained to their kids that it’s a lot less about disliking gays than it is about everyone being allowed to have a belief and practice that within the law and their rights- without the fear of government intervention.

…and it’s a little bit about the shakes too.

Another good Wiki read here, outline the issue and some local government’s illegal response.

Gay Haters? Homophobs? Staunch Conservatives? Maybe they’re just people who believe in the right to believe.  Maybe they just like the shakes.

Blood Makes the Grass Grow at the Olympics

Georgia upset to win a Gold in Judo this year. Perhaps a symbol of the country’s spirit as they are a contested and embattled nation.  Photo Courtesy:  NBC

It hasn’t been until recently that I have enough context to appreciate the Olympics.  As I grew up, it was just sports. Most of the time boring sports, without the wild commercialism that we, as Americans, enjoy in professional sports.

History though, tells a different story.  It’s more than sports.

Let’s take for instance the tensions that remain with Georgia, Russia and Azerbaijan.  Russia invaded Georgia just a few years ago, ethnic division and border tensions exist today.

When they meet on the wrestling mat, isn’t there a heightened significance? A Georgian Officer once told me that the pages of his country’s history are wet with blood, the Russian Minister of Defense calls Georgia, “Their archenemy.”

Will Croatia and Serbia face off in a bloody handball match or just continue their historic strife? The hatred goes back way before the US was even a twinkle in the eye of Great Britain.

http://www.nytimes.com/1991/05/16/world/the-serbs-and-croats-so-much-in-common-including-hate.html

Will Turkey and Armenia square off?  The Turks still reject any notion of a genocide while the Armenians demand acknowledgement for their 1.5 Million slaughtered.

We learned what North Korea thinks about the South Korean flag hanging at their games.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/north-korean-womens-soccer-team-back-in-seclusion-after-flag-mix-up-organizers-apologize/2012/07/26/gJQAsVnJBX_story.html

Israel and anyone?  According to some Iranian officials all Israelis are dogs (or is it pigs?) and they should be destroyed.

With context, the Olympics are a little more exciting and interesting.  In the span of the history of the world, our country is just a baby.  We are a new kid on the block; blood runs deep but not as deep as many.

Some of the countries that will compete in London have lost generations of men over and again due to the deep, indelible feuds they continue; its more than just soccer….or, futbol.

Chick-fil-A and the Homosexual Social Media Dilemma

This sandwich is sexual orientation neutral according to Chik fil A’s Facebook.

My kids like Chick fil A, they like the food and the ice cream that often follows.  I like it too (not in excess, see the More or Less Diet).  The restaurant being closed on Sundays is a little bit of a pain in the ass, but whatever works.

So, their opposition to gays aside; take a look at this disastrous social media venture:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/kashmirhill/2012/07/25/chick-fil-a-has-completely-lost-control-of-its-facebook-page/

Basically, they made an official statement trying to show that they are not discriminatory and they just want to go back to making good food; well, they got 28,856 comments back (at the time that I checked).

That’s tough.

I’ve been in a similar social media situation.  We posted something supportive of one of our organizational and national initiatives and received mixed feedback, some of it very critical.  Some of the PR guys at our higher headquarters, asked us to delete the critical remarks.

Answer:  No.

The deal with social media is that it has got to police itself.  We edit and delete inflammatory, abusive or offensive remarks but not simply remarks in opposition.  Let the crowds sort it out.  If the host gets into censorship then it’s no longer social media, it’s just advertising and people don’t go on your Facebook page just to look at advertising, they go to join the conversation; however useless it is.

So, my hats off to the Chick fil A PR guy for not locking down his page, although I’m sure many non-PR people suggested that he do so.  If someone did pose as teenage girl, Abby Farle; bad move!  Like I said, social media will police itself, and it did!

Nice move on the Peach Shakes though.

In flight movie

A few thoughts and observations while traveling:

Running is personal, beer is not: the dudes next to me were both fairly successful business types. They talked and talked about everything from families to football. They were both runners and both planned to run sometime today. They exchanged cards and agreed to get a beer later on. Running is a personal experience that few like to share with strangers, beer on the other hand can be done with just about anyone willing.

My prejudice: I found it hard to make small talk with my seat mates after they failed to turn off their cell phones at the appropriate time. Either they are a space cadets or they think the rules don’t apply. Either way, I’m not interested in knowing where they’re from.

Another prejudice: I feel bad about feeling this way, but if you have an advanced smart phone or a tablet and it’s not an IPhone or an IPad, you failed.

Terrorists: It seems they’ve won in some ways. Usama is probably laughing his ass off in hell as he watches us take off our shoes and belts. What about that new scanner where one has to submiss with one’s hand over their head? Embarrassing that we’ve recoiled to this.

Sky mall: Products marketed to the cat lady and people who wish they had time to watch infomercials.

Flight attendants: Very few male flight attendants seem gay. A lot of female flight attendants seem angry though.

Technology helps: I wrote this post on my phone.