Saturday, August 1, 2009

Quick Hits: August 1, 2009

Quick Hits for August 1, 2009

* Renaming Sarah: Sarah Palin quit as Governor of Alaska a year before finishing her term in office explaining that she didn't want to waste her time as a lame duck. Apparently, finishing the job is someone else's job. After a Twitter flooding of posts by Palin, apparently her Twitter has gone dark as she has quit. This has brought some to call her a "Twitter Quitter" and one even called her Sarah Quitter, pointing out that she may be becoming a cautionary tale to children about the need to actually finish something you start (credit sidunn on Twitter for this).

* Cash for Clunkers has turned out to be a great success. First, it just unclogged some inventories of automakers giving them room for new cars by moving over a quarter million cars in six days. That means new cars, jobs, and more. Second, we know that we can raise the CAFE results and environmental impact of cars by simply shifting from the lowest performing gas mileage cars to higher mileage cars, even in the same class of cars, and do it with more impact by focusing on the bottom than raising the top. This did that for a lot of people. Third, it created a reason for people to spend money. Most of economics is dealing with the consumer's psychology. Getting them from afraid of spending to make a longer term spending commitment is a good sign for consumer confidence. Maybe a few more billion in cash for clunkers should be authorized, regardless of the recycling impact.

* Moving to the Basement? Is it just me, or did Lou Dobbs go from poor journalist to national media laughing stock over the "birther's" stuff almost overnight? CNN should be embarrassed if they want to keep any reputation as a reputable news agency keeping the likes of Dobbs on the air after this.

* Dumb Move of the Week: Does anyone really think the apartment company that sued for a Twitter post saying they didn't mind the mold in their apartments had their image improved or hurt by their lawsuit? My guess is that more people think of them as slumlords now than after the Twitter post because of their lawsuit.

* I am not sure what to think of e-books at this point. @sidunn on Twitter keeps talking about e-books and trying to publish himself after writing several real books, but there is just a quality to a book. Then again, e-books do take down the prices and the elitism that keeps many good stories from being published. Yet again, it also means anyone can publish which means lots of bad stories too. Maybe we need more e-book reviewers. Should I volunteer and what should I charge?

* I have to admit I am much more excited about the NBA this year now that the Lakers re-signed Lamar Odom, further proving his desire to win and the Buss family's commitment to winning as they take the luxury tax hit for a 5 year run at NBA titles. The trade for Artest made it clear that is where they are going, a three to five year commitment, and then see where we are at. Only KU basketball makes me as excited. Rock, Chalk, Jayhawk!

* I just checked Fox's headlines and saw a picture of Ann Coulter. I could be wrong, but she seems to be moving to the realm of Fred Phelps, meaning more extreme just to get attention. I am thankful that no one has tried to call her a credible source in years.

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