Working Off Debt

Here’s an interesting little morality tale.

My wife slept with our mechanic to settle a £500 bill we couldn’t afford to pay

We’ve been struggling to make ends meet ever since my wife lost her job last year.  My salary won’t stretch to cover our food, rent and energy bills.  That’s why we’re £2,000 in debt on our credit cards.

So it was the cherry on the cake when we were told our car failed its MOT last week. The mechanic told us his repairs would cost us nearly £500.  To add insult to injury it was obvious he fancied my wife.

Panicking, I asked if we could pay in instalments.  While looking my wife up and down he cheekily suggested if we didn’t have the money he could think of another way we could pay.  He said we could think about it overnight. Walking away, I asked her what she thought.

Her answer shocked me: “You know I’d do anything for us, babe.”

So the next day my wife went to his house while I waited in the car outside — it was the longest 30 minutes of my life.  I consoled myself with the idea that she’d be hating this as much as me, but when she finally emerged she seemed defiant and said: “Now I know I’m contributing just as much as you.”

It broke my heart and I’ve only got myself to blame.  Now she thinks it’s the answer to all our financial problems.  She even suggested I could manage her diary of clients.  I’m worried she even enjoyed having sex with this mechanic.

Well, that’s one way of “taking one for the team”, innit?

I actually feel sorry for the guy, because it seems to me he’s uncaged a tiger — and it’s small wonder, when all the Brit newspapers are full of tarts making X thousand a month for showing off their bodies and doing the dirty on prostitution sites like OnlyFans;  and in truth doing nothing on SugarBabies different from Mrs. Debtfire above.

It’s always gone on, only now it’s out in public.

I just wonder how these people account for the revenue on their tax return… because if they don’t, it’s called “tax evasion”, and the collection agencies (I mean tax offices hem hem) of both the U.K. and the U.S. respectively take quite a dim view of it.

Let The Market Decide

We often hear that mantra from free-traders and staunch capitalists, but sometimes the situation isn’t that simple.  Take this example in the exquisitely-beautiful town of St. Ives, in Cornwall, Britishland:

Landlords and businesses have been buying up properties in the area and converting them into summer homes, meaning there is nowhere left for locals to rent.
Jasmin cannot find a new place to rent and her tenancy is due to end on May 10.  She has exhausted letting agents and spare room sites, and fears in three weeks she will be sleeping rough.

And from the local council:

“The boom in house prices and the demand for holiday accommodation is causing a significant reduction in the availability of homes to rent.  It matched sudden escalation in rental costs.
“Private landlords have been moving away from long-term letting and instead moving towards the short-term holiday market.”

Read the whole thing.

I know that many towns in rural counties Over Here have had the same problems — transplanted Californians, ’nuff said — to where locals with jobs in those towns have to find a place to live in further-off towns, sometimes as much as an hour’s drive (or more) away.

Jackson Hole in Wyoming, when I first drove through there back in 1987, was a one-horse town that had nothing to recommend it other than proximity to Yellowstone and a couple of ski runs;  now, it’s the place to find Hollywood types and other California scum in their vacation homes, with all the foul side-effects:  expensive housing, expensive eateries, empty streets out of season, and so on.

I don’t have any solutions — at least, not free-market solutions — so maybe it’s up to the local governments to step in;  although getting government involved usually if not always seems just to exacerbate the problem.

I welcome discussion on the topic, in Comments.

No Real Choice

Last week I got an ad sheet from a gun outlet which, as I read down the page, got up my nose.

Let’s just say, ad arguendo, that a guy had no interest in any gun that shot either the 9mm Europellet or the 5.56mm poodleshooter.  I know, in these modern times it’s not a very fashionable position to take, but nevertheless.

So how would said guy respond to an ad sheet like this one?

All the handguns look the same, distinguished one from another only by a string of incomprehensible alphanumerics, and they’re all striker-fired plastic fantastics.

Pass.

No Surprise

There are really three elements to the story of Netflix’s share price collapsing and their market cap falling through the floor.

The first is the simple stuff:  Netflix’s offerings are dire.  I think there should be an award for the guy who can scroll through their movie menu and find something he really wants to watch, in under 30 minutes.  Speaking for myself, I find myself looking for movies on Netflix linger than I actually spend watching any.  This is because Netflix’s own movies are about 10% decent and 90% utter trash.  The 10% includes the brilliant After Life  (Ricky Gervais).  The 90%?  Oy.  They run from endless permutations of women finding themselves while reconciling with a dying parent / sibling / whatever, to mindless celebrity pablum (“my Scientology experience”) to cartoonish rubbish action movies featuring female superheroes, and woke “dramas” riddled with angst.

After a while, I either turn off the TV altogether, or else take the option of Netflix’s other problem:  I go to another movie outlet.  Not that Amazon Prime is much better;  in terms of content, they’re about the same as Netflix:  10% decent, the rest ugh.  Even worse are Prime’s options, in that they’ll show you the first season of a show for free, but then you have to buy the rest.  Fuck that.  There, Netflix’s offer is at least consistent: subscribe, and everything’s “free” thereafter.  Hulu and Roku throw in atmosphere-destroying commercials, so forget that shit as well.

I rather like Discovery+, especially their true crime documentaries, while New Wife likes all the shows about Alaska, and some of the real estate shows.  But that’s pretty much it, because I absolutely refuse to subscribe to any other of the streamers like Britbox.  Thank gawd for Turner Classic movies, because I think I’m nearing the end with Discovery+.

Netflix’s third problem is a common one in the business world:  over-demanding shareholders and accountants.  You see, once a startup company reaches a commanding market share, further growth becomes increasingly difficult if not impossible, especially if new players enter the fray with similar offerings.  None of that matters to the shareholders and finance people, who have grown used to and got rich from annual gains of 25% in market share and / or the share price, and who want that gravy train to last forever.  It can’t, of course, even absent stupid business decisions (like embracing wokedom).  Market growth is finite, and expanding markets by getting into bed with evil yet populous societies like China or Russia have risks that could (and do, and have) endangered many, many corporations and organizations(Apple, NBA, coff coff ).

So there you have it:  a classic case of corporate hubris.

And I see that Disney is starting to see its own ass, too.

Welcome Reminder

…that among the larger paradigm shifts of recent years, the “go to college after high school” mantra has been largely debunked in favor of going to a trade school:

More than a million students have held off from going to college since the pandemic problems arose, and many of those students are seeking training in the trades instead. Their skills are in high demand, too, as nearly 90 percent of contractors are desperate for competent workers.

I said this back in 2008.  And no, it’s not just for boys.

   

After all, it’s not like this is some new thing, either:

Yeah, Duh

Via Insty comes this belated news:

IBM faces age bias complaints in arbitration and court proceedings by former employees across the country. A former IBM vice president of human resources said in a court deposition in one of the cases that the company faced talent recruitment problems and determined one way to show millennials that IBM was not “an old fuddy duddy organization” was to make itself appear “as [a] cool, trendy organization.”

In one email chain, an International Business Machines Corp. official described a plan to “accelerate change by inviting the ‘dinobabies’ (new species) to leave” and turn them into an “Extinct species,” according to the filing. Company officials also complained about IBM’s “dated maternal workforce” that “must change,” and discussed frustration that IBM had a much lower share of millennials in its workforce than a competitor, but said its share would increase following layoffs, according to the filing.

Of course, IBM denies all this, oh no we’d never do a thing like that:

An IBM spokesperson said in a statement that the company never engaged in systematic age discrimination and it terminated employees because of changing business conditions, not because of their age. In 2020, the median age of IBM’s U.S. workforce was 48, the same as it was in 2010, according to the statement.

The spokesperson also said the language cited in the emails “is not consistent with the respect IBM has for its employees and as the facts clearly show, it does not reflect company practices or policies.”

Lying cocksuckers.

It’s an open secret that old farts get shafted in today’s workplace:  “Become a Wal-Mart greeter” used to be the dismissive term leveled at us.  Only now (at the Wal-Marts around my house anyway), the cheery old duffers who waved you in and checked your Sam’s Club purchases on the way out have all — all — been replaced by younger Indians and “efnicks”.

Fuck all of you corporate assholes, and enjoy the taste on your tongues as you lick the rank feet of Millennial wokedom.

I hope you all die  painfully.