September 2009


LAWYER1

I needed a lawyer. I was being harassed and my job jeopardized. So, I went to get a lawyer. I call a major firm in Cleveland, Ohio. Though I’m not sure how MAJOR they were, but the did run fancy TV commercials.

“Lawfirm of___________. How May I help you today?”

“Yes, I have a possible harassment and discrimination suit against my employer, and would like to talk with a lawyer. ”

“No problem. Could I get some information from you now? ”

“Of course.”

After giving my name and vitals, she asked me about the particulars of the case. That took a while.

Finally I ask, “Is this something you can handle?”

“We handle these types of cases all the time. Do you have any evidence of these incidents?”

“Yes, I have a timeline including all people involved, documentation supporting all the incidents including some from my employer, witnesses, photographs, lots of things. ” She sounded very receptive, though.. she was supposed to.

“I have a few more basic questions before I confer with our lawyers. Do you rent or own your home? ”

“Eh..rent?” That was an odd one.

“What is your monthly salary?”

What the fuck is this? Though I didn’t say that, what I did say changed her mood as if I did. I told her what she wanted to know.

“On moment please”, she droned.

My salary? What did that have to do with…. I didn’t even have time to think the rest of my thought when she returned to the line.

“I’m sorry. We can’t help you with your case at this time. Have a nice day”

“Uh…Than….” My goodby was too slow. She hung-up. (more…)

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Listening to the lip-service given global warming at the recent global-warming summit of the UN, I realized what a farce it was. Anti-global warming measures have to start locally. In the US, it’s the duty of state and county government’s to set and enforce emission limits in companies. This is where it begins. The rest is macroeconomics. Except from a genuine plea for action from the Maldives (which is about to cease to exist from global warming) , the rest was nothing more than slightly stirring rhetoric. You can’t hash-out a treaty for behavior. But you can make a treaty for something even just as timely and important: the global ECONOMIC crisis that the U.S. created.

Imagine a new “International Financial Services” treaty going something like this…

1. A Glass-Steagall-like directive separating investment banks from consumer banks. We used to have this in the US. Not anymore.

2. A directive prohibiting Credit Default Swap‘s and bucket shop financial gaming. We used to have this law too, but we ignored it.

3. Requirement that all signing countries pass and enforce laws in their respective countries that meet these requirements, not just to “work-towards” enactment.

4. Whatever the hell else you think might help.

If we are going to finally scrap all the west’s last isolationist notions and truly embrace a ‘global’ economy, global economic treaties keeping one nation from destroying the rest are a necessity. Everyone now knows that this isn’t just a college economics-class theoretical problem. It’s very real, and so is the need for a treaty like this.