Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Apologies to Rosa and any of my other faithful readers who might have been left despondent and nearly suicidal by my failure to post a blog yesterday. Yesterday the ol' blog machine just wouldn't let me log on to publish anything. I'm not sure what was up with that. Probably The Man screwing with me again.
I want to wish a very happy belated birthday to Ryan "Roundball" Steans, my younger sibling and one of the most polychromatic guys I've ever met. Ryan turned 30 years young, yesterday, so it's safe to say that the best days of his life are now behind him, and there's nothing left to live for. Cheers, mate!
What else...?
Britney Spears is pregnant. Just can't bring myself to care enough about that to even make a joke about it. Aren't her 15 minutes up yet?
Michael Jackson apparently offered to buy a house and to pay for college for some boy who slept with him if the kid would just appear on a videotape refuting earlier statements that had accused Jackson of impropriety. Man. If only a few of my clients had enough money to buy houses for their accusers, I bet I could work out all kinds of deals.
Last, but certainly not least, our hard working political leaders in Washington our working in our best interest again. Bills are currently working their way through Congress which would repeal the estate tax, a tax which effects only the wealthiest 2% of the population (individuals with estates larger than $1.5 million) and which largely taxes only capital gains (which will go untaxed if the estate tax is repealed). The estate tax also encourages charity by making charitable contributions tax exempt. At the same time that the estate tax is being scheduled for demolition, Congress (with help from their friends in the banking and credit industries) is looking to modify the bankruptcy laws to make it more difficult for Americans to work their way out from under crippling mountains of debt (requiring all money to be repaid to creditors, despite declaring bankruptcy). Congress is choosing to modify these laws at a time when most studies indicate that half of the people who declare bankruptcy do so because of unexpected medical care costs in a system which leaves them inadequately insured. Congress doesn't have much to say about fixing those problems with the health care system.
Anyway, I'm being cut off in mid rant because a client just came in to see me. Probably a good thing. I don't want to be too political. It upsets Crackbass.

What is up, AMD? You're s'posed to be the friendly little Austin-based company that makes Intel look like big, evil ogres who engage in stupid construction projects (which later get abandoned). Reed and Frank, we'd appreciate it if you could prevent AMD from screwing up our groundwater. Thanks.


The League said...

You know, if anyone is going to know how to keep an area clean and free of microscopic stuff, it SHOULD be a wafer manufacturer.

I think AMD should bend to the will of the Austin environmentalists and build an offic ecomplex which sits among the clouds like Bespin.

Reed said...

I too wish AMD were building somewhere else (as does Frank I'm sure). However, and I know this may come as a shock, but Frank and I weren't involved in the decision. If we were, we wouldn't be moving there. I just hope AMD either reverses the decision, or that they stick to their new words, and do go above and beyond in regards to protecting the environment. I'm skeptical, but then again I'm skeptical of all politicians and companies (even when I work for the company). It is funny how AMD always markets itself as being part of the Austin commmunity. This also affects me since I live 5 minutes from the new site. My commute will be significantly reduced, but increased traffic and pollution directly affects me since I live so close.

It would be pretty cool to have an office (cube) in the clouds.

Steanso said...

Another option would be for AMD to move it's entire operation underground into a system of tunnels and holes. All of the employees would be chained to their desks and take turns singing old slave spirituals.

Reed said...

Also, not to bring everyone down, but most of the green belts around Austin, the watershed, etc. will eventually be developed. We are in a time where big business can do whatever they want. They call the shots. Other than my time at A&M ('91 - '97), I have lived in Austin since 1980. Every decade, more of Austin's charm is taken away. In the 80s, Austin no longer became a college town. In the 90s, Austin got urban sprawl, tremendous traffic problems, and green belts were developed. Every year, another green belt around Austin gets developed. I hate to sound cynical, but some other business would develop out there eventually. It's inevitable. I've noticed it happening to this city over the last 20 years. In another 20 years, I expect Austin to be like Dallas/Ft. Worth. Until the majority of this country realizes that there are some things more important than money, and that human beings need a good, clean, healthy environment to thrive and survive in, development and money interests will always win out. Since '99 (when I moved out to Travis Country), I have seen more and more office parks get built along Southwest Parkway. I wish this trend wasn't occuring, but as Dylan said:

"money doesn't talk, it swears".

Reed said...

Underground. Alright. That would be pretty cool. Although, we're currently chained to our desks now so that wouldn't be much of a change. We don't typically sing old slave spirituals so that could be something new.

Anonymous said...

yeah..not sure why they can't take
over one of the many empty office
buildings spread about town. I only hope it's as plain and architecturally
insignificant as all of the rest of
the office space in Austin.


The League said...

I forgot to say: I find it odd you say you don't care if Britney is pregnant and then go on to mention it. You totally are in love with her. You want to kiss her.

Steanso said...

Hey Reed, I'm not trying to pick on you because I know the neighborhood was developed long before you built your house, but isn't the Travis Country neighborhood built on land that was once part of (or at least in part) Austin's greenbelt? (I know there is some greenbelt still around it, but if memory serves, I think part of the greenbelt was purchased and developed in establishing Travis Country). Anyway, I'm just pointing out that it's not just big business that's doing this to Austin- the people of Austin are also doing it to themselves as we grow in population, but demand bigger, new houses in areas close to the city on whatever small builts of undeveloped land that remain. I'm also with Frank- are we sure AMD even needs to build a new facility, given the fact that this city is chock full of half empty or empty office buildings? (there's a nice frame downtown left over from Intel that I'm sure AMD could get for a nickel)

Steanso said...

Also, I don't want to kiss Britney. Lots of other stuff, perhaps, but I don't necessarily need to kiss her....

CrackBass said...

I wanna kiss britney. and ryan. but mostly ryan. and mostly britney.