Welcome to my obscure, funny and sometimes crazy blog

This author doesn’t usually write about politics. It’s highly emotive and is a hotbed of argument and banter.  Most of us have an opinion. Right?

Here’s an interesting picture lifted from a social networking site.

The poster of the image is an American citizen and to her represents the ‘painful truth’.  Notice the statement at the bottom, ‘When will we revolt?’ This isn’t the first time the word revolt has appeared in posts read by this Australian citizen. It’s interesting to note that these US Nationals have never spoken to each other before and they aren’t socially connected on this site, but they seem to have the same sentiment. The general understanding is some American working class citizens are truly hurting and unhappy at the corrupt unfair practices of their government.  The inclination, is that the workers in the ‘trenches’ are being screwed over in favour of the rich.

US REACHES DEBT CEILING

The US House of Representatives has just passed a bill to increase the US borrowing limit; there are massive spending cuts to come and huge limits on future spending if the bill succeeds through the Senate. It is expected to be defeated. The consequence as threatened before is America’s ability to pay for itsdebts. On May 16th, the US reached its debt ceiling of $14.3 trillion.   In other words, it has borrowed all it can borrow, but reassuringly can continue to pay it’s debts till August 2nd 2011.  On June 29th, The International Monetary Fund urged that the debt ceiling must be raised to avoid shocking the global market and Americas recovering economy.  This conversation is still occurring with the August deadline approaching fast.  Why is this different to the rest of times the US has raised its debt ceiling? It’s not unusual and, has been occurring since it’s origins within the 1917 Second Liberty Bond Act * where the ceiling was set at $43 billion.

* Note: Link may not open. Source can be found at: http://fpc.state.gov/documents/organization/105193.pdf

At the high end,there’s politicians stoushing it out. Republicans in the Congress are using the ‘debt ceiling’ as a lever to force measures aimed at reducing deficit. . It’s in the press. It makes people jittery in the economical arena; especially since a lot of US debt is foreign owned. The term double dip recession is bantered about and since the US is still recovering from the GFC must make some nervous.  Strong language such as ‘devastating’ and ‘panic’ are common. At the middle and lower end there’s talk about job losses, reduction of benefits, cessation of wages and pensions to federal employees including defence staff. It’s quite a miserable state of affairs really and one, which wouldn’t help the psychology of its nationals. Check out the US debt clock for a minute by minute update. It’s daunting stuff.

 

QUESTIONABLE ECONOMY

The US seriously looks questionable in its ability to control debt. The image of 14.3 trillion is beyond fathom for most people, although we’d love the bank account. The debt ceiling will get raised again and again but at what cost? With Americas also increasing fat war fingers in a lot of pies, questions are being raised about financial sustainability on the global stage let alone within her own borders.

NO WONDER THERE IS TALK OF A REVOLUTION!

Technology immediately enables people from all over the world to discuss, share and elaborate on a theme. Feedback can be immediate. Video, photography and imagery add weight to any post and if enough people empathise and pass the information on, a ‘viral’ phenomenon occurs. It’s one person talking to another to another, to another and in a snowball effect until, ‘We have to act as individuals in the manner of collectively taking backour country. Revolution!’

‘The government is coming, the government is coming’. A take on the Paul Revere catchcry about the British has been expressed in a recent post.

Is the USA on the Verge of a Citizen Revolt?

 It seems very possible!

There’s the invitation offered from the United States of Earth (U.S.E) to ‘Join Us and Help Save Freedom and America.’ Signing up for the game, 2011 Obama Coup Fails allows the user to,’ join with thousands of other Patriots and help organize the new
Conservative revolution of the Tea Party Movement.’ A clearly dissentient website opposed to the Obama administration. It’s infused with a barrage of links, banners, imagery and information and asks, ‘Is this game or is it reality? We
must ask ourselves this question honestly if the United States of America and Freedom are to survive the Obama administration. We have perhaps less than two years left.’

In February, 100,000 protestors converged into the Wisconsin capitol voicing anger at a new law, ‘to strip collective bargaining
rights from the state’s unionized workers.’ Similar protests were held around the country and were considered to be the largest since the Vietnam War.

One simply can’t shake the eerie feeling there’s country wide unease in the good old US of A.

It’s not hard to find the evidence.

History is watching and so is the rest of the world.

Oh, and the Pentagon is watching too. Coming to a social network
near you soon! The Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency  is currently assembling its new team.

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“You don’t want to look like the turd in the punchbowl, do ya?” What an audio visual delight that statement is. A mere snippet of the verbal trash that comes out of the mouths of pageant parents on Foxtel’s Toddlers & Tiaras. Classy huh?  If you haven’t seen it yet, young girls vie for cash, crowns, titles and sashes in pageant events in the US. The show
follows pageant families in preparation for contest day. It’s serious business.

The mums take the prize! Talk about controlling, competitive, pushy bitches. Go glitz or go home is their common catch cry. Most of the girls seem to enjoy the whole charade and, they say they feel like Cinderella, but one suspects some are cajoled and manipulated by their egotistical mothers. It’s seems a very huge deal to them.

One mother, who paid $1200 for a custom dress, put her 8 year daughter on a fruit diet simply because her dress was ‘snugger’ than the mum liked. ‘My mum wants me to be nice, healthy and thin’, said the cute, young, perfectly weighted child. The same mum wants her daughter to do more pageants, if her daughter fits into the dresses. Slap! Mum’s going to put her on a diet if she doesn’t. What’s this doing to the psychology of her beautiful pre-teen child? Um I’m not pretty unless I’m thin? She didn’t win 1st prize. The child cries into her mother’s chest and, later mouths the words, ‘I lost’ to the camera. ‘If you get to win, you’re really happy,’ she adds. For this gorgeous child, mum used a well known expletive to show her disappointment. What is the gratification they get? These women will do anything and everything to make sure their child is crowned the winner. It’s horrifying that they seriously equate winning as a measure of their daughter’s beauty.

‘She’s got the whole package’ exclaims an excited pageant mum. Vision a 5 year old girl in a fake tan, fake hair, false eyelashes in bikini and high heels on stage doing a ‘sassy’ walk, wiggling her derriere and winking at the audience. She’s got
the face of an 18 year old on a small petite childs body. Doing the ‘sassy’ walk or wiggle is everyday language to these girls. It’s a word repeatedly used throughout the series. Before these children even reach the stage they have been carefully coached to perform sassy. ‘We practice everyday to go on stage to be sassy and beautiful, ‘said one 4 year old contender. ‘She’s really hard
on herself if she messes up her walk,’ laments her impatient mother. Perhaps pageant people, cute would be a better word?  Sassy
infers some sort of sexiness which these impressionable girls don’t need.  Some parents even go as far as paying professional pageant and dancing coaches to ensure their daughters sassy success and as one mum’s expounds, ‘If they ain’t talking about ya, you’re a nobody.’

Toddlers and Tiaras is an intense series. It raises all sorts of questions about beauty and societies narrow ideal of physical appearance. On the upside, the prizes and cash are bountiful. If she’s beautiful enough to win successive contests, then she’s a parent’s cash cow dream! Sass, smile, wiggle, jiggle, wink, scoot left, and scoot right. Them there are definitely the skills that every little girl needs to succeed in the future. Sarcasm intended!

The legendary Duff Beer is back.

Homer Simpson’s lager of choice is on the market again.

It’s not the Australia version brewed in the mid 90’s by the Lion Nathan Brewery, as that project came to an abrupt end when 20th Century Fox brought legal action against the company, forcing the cans to be swiftly removed from Aussie shelves.

If you managed to secure a carton or two and didn’t drink them, and have been living under a mushroom for some time, these cans can fetch a princely sum. Check out the net you’ll find some eager vendor willing to part with their prized possession for a nice price.  Shaunessy of Queensland sold his excellent condition, full contents carton of cans for $USD 1000 on Swap Ace and someone in Newcastle wants to sell you their mint condition 6 pack on locanto.com.au.  On June 21st 2011 a solitary can of Lion Nation Brewery Duff Beer sold for $150 on ebay.com.au and even empty cans are asking between $15-$25 AUD. EBay buyer U**t
purchased an empty Duff carton for $34.99 + $15.00 for postage. Great Aussie enterprise pipped at the post, but still earning for collectors a decades later. ‘Mmmmm Beer’ as Homer would say.

I wonder what Lion Nathan Brewery thinks about the German invasion on Australian shores? It’s not called simply Duff Beer though; it’s The Legendary Duff Beer. In 2010 it was Germanys number 1 Best Seller. It uses the same branding colours as the Simpsons and Lion Nathan version, except there’s a dot on the top of the label in the TV series. Also, it doesn’t come in a can that this author knows of but a 330ml bottle. Brewed by Eschweger Klosterbrauerei, it’s a German Pilsner with 4.9% alcohol value, that doesn’t get ecstatic reviews. Most bought it for its novelty value.  The Legendary Duff Beer has been selling in Europe for a while, but is now available on Australian shores.

Buy it if you find it, it probably won’t be long for this world, once 20th Century FOX & Matt Groening learn that they’re not making royalties on a knock-off beer.

According to the bottleshop advertisement, it’s ‘More Than Just Beer.’

That’s right, Doh!

It’s The Legendary Duff Beer!

Available on special in Fremantle, Western Australia until July 31st for $59.99/carton

Get yours today.

Duff Man would be proud!

The Hoffsicle!

The Hoffsicle a fruit flavoured icypole moulded in the form of David Hasselhoff has been launched by Del Monte Foods, in honour of the USA’s July National Ice-cream Month. Which part you gunna lick?

That’s actually quite disturbing. The man is a douche.  Seriously why does this guy have such legend status? Now ladies, I think Del Monte foods might need to check their priorities. As of course any business is in it to make money not turn  their customers off.

Now I think a icypole in the shape Jensen Ackles aka Dean Winchester from the Supernatural series would be a better choice or maybe Alex O’ Loughlin from the the current Hawaii Five O series or even Fergie’s sexy husband Josh Duhamel but the Hoff please! I know if an icypole were in the images of sexy men then they would fly out of the freezer. Yes, and one for the guys, they could mould Pippa arse too. Imagine the profit!

This year Hasselhoff was named Britains Smoothest TV Personality. I’m shaking my head. Come on! He’s a Has-been, but his cult status is imprinted in urban culture. Have a check on the web and you can purchase all matter of Hoff merchandise. There’s thousands of sites dedicated to the Hoff. Gotta give it to you David, your brand works but I gag at the thought of buying an icypole dedicated to you! Yuck!

Spread the word!

Creative statements on packaging mislead again.

This time its brand name X with
a flowery spread, ‘crammed full of sunflower seed oils’.

What’s the definition of crammed according to
the Oxford Dictionary? It means, completely fill (a place
or container) to the point of overflowing.

FAIL!

Reading the
nutritional panel, the spread has only 24% sunflower oil. It’s not crammed full
of sunflower seed oils as it claims on the front. In fact, 76% of it is crammed
full of other ingredients like vegetable oils, emulsifiers, preservatives,
colours and flavours!

It does have the Heart
Foundation
tick which means it can’t be that bad. Right?

 It’s been rigorously
and independently analysed by a NATA accredited laboratory to ensure it meets the
Heart Foundation criteria before a tick can be applied.  According the Heart Foundation website, ‘Tick foods offer not only a healthier choice but truth in food labelling too. It
must either on packaging or at point of sale, a nutrition information panel as specified
in the Australian New Zealand Food Authority Code and comply with the Code of
Practice on Nutrient Claims in Food Labels and in Advertisements.’ 

This product complies obviously. However, advertisers use clever spin. The data on the amount of sunflower seed oils was lifted directly from the nutritional panel on the back of the pack. Clearly if it were crammed there would be more than 24% in the product wouldn’t there?

Pippas Bum

It is confirmed. There are people on this planet that haven’t heard of her. Like in downtown Phoenix Arizona for instance. Before April 29th,we hadn’t either.

Introducing Ms Pippa Middleton

 And her arse.

Pippa upstaged the royal bride, Kate Middleton with her stunning good looks; Sarah Burton designed dress and her petite and now famous butt.  Shortly after dubbed, ‘Her Royal Hotness’, by the press.  Facebook page, ‘The Pippa Middleton Ass Appreciation Society’ has over 234,000 fans and there’s probably a doll in the pipeline. Ebay is buzzing with magazines being the hottest Pippa items in Australia, in the UK its Modalu Bristol ‘Pippa’ bags and in the US it’s mags and glossy shots of her derriere.  It’s been rumoured she was offered $5 million to appear in a porno and Barbara Walters and Oprah want her as a show host. She’s hot property.

Fashionistas all over the world are buying into the Pippa market. An adapted dress has been released by Australia fashion brand, Cue. Wholesale Pippa dresses can be procured from China at a very
reasonable cost. There are thousands of places to get the Pippa look on the
net. She’s a marketeers dream.

Seriously, she’s gorgeous, but is she news?  The answer seems to be yes. If it’s Pippa, it
sells. Even better for the fellas she’s single, independantly rich and has
established ties with the royal family. Of course lets not forget ‘Her Royal
Hotness’, has a perfect picturesque arse too.

This consumer is irritated. Purely by chance, this author discovered ‘Brand name’ Tuna Chunks in springwater ® 180 gram didn’t contain the 2 x 60 grams serving sizes purported to on the pack.

 We required 100 grams of tuna. Remember, we’re supposed to get 120 grams of tuna in the tin with the rest being water. Surprise, surprise. After weighing out what was needed there was no flesh left in the tin. Note we don’t have state of the art digital scales. It’s a mechanical spring scale that uses a platform mounted on a heavy spring to measure weight. Research showed they aren’t known to be particularly accurate or precise, but surely….they couldn’t be out 20 grams?

The search was on for proof the scales weren’t blatantly inaccurate before going on a blogging tirade.  A can of ‘Other Brand name’ Spaghetti Tomato and Cheese was weighed. It proved to be 220g as stated on package. Proof secured.

The tuna used in ‘Brand name’ Tuna Chunks in springwater ® 180 gram is Skipjack. The can should contain 65% Skipjack as printed on their nutritional information panel.  Mathematically, using their own data you won’t be getting 2 x 60 grams serves anyway. You only get 58.5 grams per serve or 117 grams of tuna in the whole can. In effect you’ve already been 3 grams ripped off even if the can contained the amount of tuna it supposed to have.  They have creatively rounded the numbers up and I guess hoped you didn’t notice. We were denied 20 grams of tuna, only got 55.5% skipjack and nearly half the can as water we couldn’t use.

This author is now thinking where else are we ripped off? Please feel free to respond with you own consumer rip off stories.

This author shall approach ‘Brand name’ Tuna Chunks in springwater ® company and see what their
response is.  This author has omitted the brand names of the food companies involved in this blog for legal purposes.

UPDATE:

The tuna company did call. Weights can vary and the problem has supposedly been reported back to the factory. Unfortunately, the caller got me on the run. I didn’t pounce with good investigative questions as to why the weights vary. They are sending out something in the mail as a sign of good intentions.