Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Milton Friedman

Milton Friedman July 31, 1912 - November 16, 2006

Milton Friedman was born 100 years ago today. If you've never heard of him or listened to any of his philosophies, I give you the video below where Mr. Friedman absolutely destroys Phil Donahue in an interview done in 1979:

Here is a transcript of the clip:
Donahue: When you see around the globe the mal-distribution of wealth, the desperate plight of millions of people in underdeveloped countries, when you see so few haves and so many have-nots, when you see the greed and the concentration of power, did you ever have a moment of doubt about capitalism and whether greed’s a good idea to run on?
Friedman: Well, first of all, tell me is there some society you know that doesn’t run on greed? You think Russia doesn’t run on greed? You think China doesn’t run on greed? What is greed? Of course none of us are greedy; its only the other fellow who’s greedy.The world runs on individuals pursuing their separate interests. The great achievements of civilization have not come from government bureaus. Einstein didn’t construct his theory under order from a bureaucrat. Henry Ford didn’t revolutionize the automobile industry that way. In the only cases in which the masses have escaped from the kind of grinding poverty you’re talking about, the only cases in recorded history are where they have had capitalism and largely free trade. If you want to know where the masses are worst off, it’s exactly in the kinds of societies that depart from that. So that the record of history is absolutely crystal clear: that there is no alternative way so far discovered of improving the lot of the ordinary people that can hold a candle to the productive activities that are unleashed by a free enterprise system.
Donahue: But it seems to reward not virtue as much as ability to manipulate the system.
Friedman: And what does reward virtue? You think the communist commissar rewards virtue? You think a Hitler rewards virtue? You think – excuse me, if you will pardon me – do you think American presidents reward virtue? Do they choose their appointees on the basis of the virtue of the people appointed or on the basis of their political clout? Is it really true that political self interest is nobler somehow than economic self interest? You know I think you are taking a lot of things for granted. Just tell me where in the world you find these angels who are going to organize society for us? Well, I don’t even trust you to do that.

Milton Friedman
Positively brilliant
More from that interview:

On corporate bailouts:
The government has been helping to kill Chrysler, but it should not help to save Chrysler, of course not…. This is a profit-and-loss system, and the loss part is even more important than the profit because it helps get rid of badly managed, poorly operated companies.
On large corporations and government regulations:
One of the major reasons you have multinationals and large companies now is precisely because of the role which government plays… the most effective anti-trust measure you could take in this country would be complete free trade.One of the major reasons… why multinationals are able to occupy the position they are is because government regulations favor multinationals; almost all government regulation favors big companies over little companies.
On the nature of corporations versus government:
General motors cannot get a dollar out of your pocket unless you voluntarily pay it over.  The government can, and that’s the fundamental difference.
On the relationship between rising prices and government spending:
The single most important step you can take to lower inflation is to cut down on government spending.The reason why medical costs have been rising so rapidly in the country is again, I sing the same old tune but it happens to be true, because whereas some 15 or 20 years ago government spending on medical care accounted for something like 10%-20% of total medical care spending, mostly for public health and veterans, today it amounts to something like 40% or more of the spending and that’s what’s been driving these prices up.
More quotes:

 A major source of objection to a free economy is precisely that it ... gives people what they want instead of what a particular group thinks they ought to want. Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself.Governments never learn. Only people learn. 
History suggests that capitalism is a necessary condition for political freedom. Clearly it is not a sufficient condition.
I am favor of cutting taxes under any circumstances and for any excuse, for any reason, whenever it's possible.
If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in 5 years there'd be a shortage of sand.
Inflation is the one form of taxation that can be imposed without legislation.
Many people want the government to protect the consumer. A much more urgent problem is to protect the consumer from the government.
Most economic fallacies derive from the tendency to assume that there is a fixed pie, that one party can gain only at the expense of another.
Most of the energy of political work is devoted to correcting the effects of mismanagement of government.
Nothing is so permanent as a temporary government program.
Only government can take perfectly good paper, cover it with perfectly good ink and make the combination worthless.
The black market was a way of getting around government controls. It was a way of enabling the free market to work. It was a way of opening up, enabling people.
The government solution to a problem is usually as bad as the problem.
The Great Depression, like most other periods of severe unemployment, was produced by government mismanagement rather than by any inherent instability of the private economy.
The most important single central fact about a free market is that no exchange takes place unless both parties benefit.
The most important ways in which I think the Internet will affect the big issue is that it will make it more difficult for government to collect taxes.
The only way that has ever been discovered to have a lot of people cooperate together voluntarily is through the free market. And that's why it's so essential to preserving individual freedom.
The power to do good is also the power to do harm.
One of the great mistakes is to judge policies and programs by their intentions rather than their results.
The great virtue of a free market system is that it does not care what color people are; it does not care what their religion is; it only cares whether they can produce something you want to buy. It is the most effective system we have discovered to enable people who hate one another to deal with one another and help one another 
The society that puts equality before freedom will end up with neither. The society that puts freedom before equality will end up with a great measure of both
 I think that nothing is so important for freedom as recognizing in the law each individual’s natural right to property, and giving individuals a sense that they own something that they’re responsible for, that they have control over, and that they can dispose of. 
When unions get higher wages for their members by restricting entry into an occupation, those higher wages are at the expense of other workers who find their opportunities reduced. When government pays its employees higher wages, those higher wages are at the expense of the taxpayer. But when workers get higher wages and better working conditions through the free market, when they get raises by firm competing with one another for the best workers, by workers competing with one another for the best jobs, those higher wages are at nobody's expense. They can only come from higher productivity, greater capital investment, more widely diffused skills. The whole pie is bigger - there's more for the worker, but there's also more for the employer, the investor, the consumer, and even the tax collector. 
There is one and only one social responsibility of business–to use its resources and engage in activities designed to increase its profits so long as it stays within the rules of the game, which is to say, engages in open and free competition without deception or fraud
 For example, the supporters of tariffs treat it as self-evident that the creation of jobs is a desirable end, in and of itself, regardless of what the persons employed do. That is clearly wrong. If all we want are jobs, we can create any number--for example, have people dig holes and then fill them up again, or perform other useless tasks. Work is sometimes its own reward. Mostly, however, it is the price we pay to get the things we want. Our real objective is not just jobs but productive jobs--jobs that will mean more goods and services to consume.
I am a libertarian with a small 'l' and a Republican with a capital 'R'. And I am a Republican with a capital 'R' on grounds of expediency, not on principle.
 Our minds tell us, and history confirms, that the great threat to freedom is the concentration of power. Government is necessary to preserve our freedom, it is an instrument through which we can exercise our freedom; yet by concentrating power in political hands, it is also a threat to freedom. Even though the men who wield this power initially be of good will and even though they be not corrupted by the power they exercise, the power will both attract and form men of a different stamp
 The existence of a free market does not of course eliminate the need for government. On the contrary, government is essential both as a forum for determining the "rule of the game" and as an umpire to interpret and enforce the rules decided on. 
The ICC [Interstate Commerce Commission] illustrates what might be called the natural history of government intervention. A real or fancied evil leads to demands to do something about it. A political coalition forms consisting of sincere, high-minded reformers and equally sincere interested parties. The incompatible objectives of the members of the coalition (e.g., low prices to consumers and high prices to producers) are glossed over by fine rhetoric about “the public interest,” “fair competition,” and the like. The coalition succeeds in getting Congress (or a state legislature) to pass a law. The preamble to the law pays lip service to the rhetoric and the body of the law grants power to government officials to “do something.” The high-minded reformers experience a glow of triumph and turn their attention to new causes. The interested parties go to work to make sure that the power is used for their benefit. They generally succeed. Success breeds its problems, which are met by broadening the scope of intervention. Bureaucracy takes its toll so that even the initial special interests no longer benefit. In the end the effects are precisely the opposite of the objectives of the reformers and generally do not even achieve the objectives of the special interests. Yet the activity is so firmly established and so many vested interests are connected with it that repeal of the initial legislation is nearly inconceivable. Instead, new government legislation is called for to cope with the problems produced by the earlier legislation and a new cycle begins. 
There is still a tendency to regard any existing government intervention as desirable, to attribute all evils to the market, and to evaluate new proposals for government control in their ideal form, as they might work if run by able, disinterested men free from the pressure of special interest groups. 
Because we live in a largely free society, we tend to forget how limited is the span of time and the part of the globe for which there has ever been anything like political freedom: the typical state of mankind is tyranny, servitude, and misery. The nineteenth century and early twentieth century in the Western world stand out as striking exceptions to the general trend of historical development. Political freedom in this instance clearly came along with the free market and the development of capitalist institutions. So also did political freedom in the golden age of Greece and in the early days of the Roman era. 
Political freedom means the absence of coercion of a man by his fellow men. The fundamental threat to freedom is power to coerce, be it in the hands of a monarch, a dictator, an oligarchy, or a momentary majority. The preservation of freedom requires the elimination of such concentration of power to the fullest possible extent and the dispersal and distribution of whatever power cannot be eliminated — a system of checks and balances. 
Government has three primary functions. It should provide for military defense of the nation. It should enforce contracts between individuals. It should protect citizens from crimes against themselves or their property. When government-- in pursuit of good intentions tries to rearrange the economy, legislate morality, or help special interests, the cost come in inefficiency, lack of motivation, and loss of freedom. Government should be a referee, not an active player. 
We economists don't know much, but we do know how to create a shortage. If you want to create a shortage of tomatoes, for example, just pass a law that retailers can't sell tomatoes for more than two cents per pound. Instantly you'll have a tomato shortage. It's the same with oil or gas. 
I say thank God for government waste. If government is doing bad things, it's only the waste that prevents the harm from being greater. 
The unions might be good for the people who are in the unions but it doesn't do a thing for the people who are unemployed. Because the union keeps down the number of jobs, it doesn't do a thing for them. 
With respect to teachers' salaries .... Poor teachers are grossly overpaid and good teachers grossly underpaid. Salary schedules tend to be uniform and determined far more by seniority. 
The true test of any scholar's work is not what his contemporaries say, but what happens to his work in the next 25 or 50 years. And the thing that I will really be proud of is if some of the work I have done is still cited in the text books long after I am gone. 
Finally, Q&A with an audience member from the Donahue interview:

I would love to hear what Mr. Friedman would have to say about Elizabeth Warren and President Obama's take on business and the economy...

Monday, July 30, 2012

Divorced From Boston Red Sox - And Very Happy

I'll admit a few things up front:

1) I am a hockey fan first and foremost. But I stopped watching hockey for almost 20 years for several reasons.

2) I've always liked baseball but not enough to follow it if my team was out of it.

3) I'm from Boston, which makes (or in this case made) me a Boston Red Sox fan.

This means a delusional allegiance to a team that hasn't always reciprocated. Which in part was the main reason I stopped watching hockey.

I am a Boston Bruins fan.

How do these two relate other than geographically?

I stopped watching the Bruins and therefore the NHL because I had had enough of former GM Harry Sinden and owner Jeremy Jacobs (who still owns the team). Every year the Bruins would be 'just good enough' but they would never invest in any player or players that would take them over the top.

Even Al 'The Planet' Iafrate didn't cut it
In a way, this philosophy is still in play, but in a much better way. The Bruins will likely never pay top dollar and give out one of these 6 to14 year contracts that are now in vogue in the NHL. And I wholeheartedly support that. Any team that gives any pro athlete a contract for longer that 5 years is insane in my view. The NHL changed the rules so that teams must spend a minimum of the salary, today, the Bruins spend to the upper end of the cap limit which is counter to the ways the team was previously run.

What brought me back? The 2011 team. Even if they hadn't gone on to win the Stanley Cup as they did, I was back.

For two main reasons:

1) While I was sort of watching peripherally, the Bruins were building a solid team from top to bottom under the guidance of Bruins General Manager Peter Chiarelli. Chiarelli put together a very good (not great) lineup that featured great goaltending and a team first attitude. Secondly, they had Claude Julien as the head coach who had failed while coaching the Bruins long time bitter rival The Montreal Canadiens but has found a home here in Boston. Signing players like defenseman Zdeno Chara and keeping core players like center Patrice Bergeron were the building blocks.

2) My son became a hockey fan. For all the years I ignored the Bruins and the NHL, he was never really exposed to hockey while he was growing up. Now that he's older, he found that he loves hockey. With a passion. After growing up in the Original Six era and seeing all the greats like Bobby Orr, Phil Esposito, Ken Dryden, Bobby Hull, Stan Mikita, Guy Lafleur, and the list goes on and on, how could I resist not going back to my favorite sport when my son fell in love with it?

My dad had "season tickets" way back in the 50's, 60's and 70's. They really weren't season tickets because he and about 20 other guys would show up every game and buy their tickets at the box office prior to every game. I don't know if anyone else could have walked up and bought any of those seats, but my dad and all those other guys were in the same seats every single game for years.

And I got to go to a lot of games back then. I remember seeing goalies without masks and straight sticks. That's how far back I go with the Bruins.

Then the Bruins screwed everything up by drafting a young kid from Parry Sound Ontario named Bobby Orr and went on to win the Stanley Cup in 1969-70. Everything changed after that, no more walking up to the ticket office the night of the game and getting  "your" seat.

Toronto Maple Leafs goalie Bruce Gamble pictured with Boston Bruins defenseman Bobby Orr.
I might have even been at this game. I saw Toronto Maple Leafs goaltender, Bruce Gamble take a  Dallas Smith shot that was tipped to his forehead. Blood everywhere, Gamble, who was replaced for two periods by veteran backup Johnny Bower,  returned to play in the 3rd period after getting stitched. Old school hockey.
Anyway, enough digression, this is about my divorce from baseball.

What led to it? Why, the 2011 Red Sox of course.

I disliked the team. From the beginning of the season it felt to me like this team was just unlikable. They went out and got Adrian Gonzales, who was long coveted by then Red Sox General Manager Theo Epstein. Gonzales was born to play at Fenway Park we heard.  Gonzales might be a great hitter and all that, but he has the personality of a spinster librarian from the 1960's.

They also signed long time nemesis Carl Crawford as a free agent who tormented the Red Sox for many years with the Tampa Bay Rays. Crawford has been a major bust since signing here. To be fair, he's battled injuries, but it was a curious signing by Epstein from the outset. They really had no place for Crawford in the lineup. At least Crawford seems like a good guy. Both Gonzales and Crawford were signed to long term mega deals.

The Red Sox also signed long time malcontent pitcher John Lackey. Lackey is probably MLB's biggest sourpuss and has the personality of swamp rat aka a nutria. Just what this team needed.

It's likely that move alone was what galvanized the team to become one of the most overpaid, entitled bunch of whiner Red Sox ever assembled which is quite an accomplishment. In combination with Josh Beckett, who was already someone who is about as affable as a hungry grizzly bear. Kevin Youkilis, Dustin Pedroia, David Ortiz, Jason Varitek and Tim Wakefield made for a toxic mixture in the Red Sox clubhouse for then manager Terry Francona.

For the record, I loved Francona. A lot of Red Sox fans did not. Francona was probably not the best tactical manager in baseball, but he won two World Series with the Red Sox in 2004 and 2007 which in my book entitled him to a lifetime pass.

Francona, as it happens after 8 years, lost the team and it was time for a change.

But, ever publicity conscious Red Sox ownership and upper management screwed this up beyond all reason. Instead of handling this like "IT WAS TIME FOR A CHANGE, you know, we love Terry Francona and the Red Sox will always be grateful for his contributions, etc. but we felt it is time for a change." And bring in a new manager (John Farrell anyone?) Red Sox management had to do what they do and have done so many times in the past; poison the waters and make Francona look bad.

Stories were floated about Francona's marriage falling apart and pain killer addiction was put out there in a now infamous column by Boston Globe hatchet man Bob Hohler. 

Hohler never wrote anything worth a damn in his career, but all of a sudden has this powder keg of inside intimate information about Francona and publishes it after Francona was unceremoniously dumped. Hmmm, how did Hohler get such juicy info? Couldn't have been from the great Larry Lucchino who is about is as vindictive a snake that has ever slithered the earth could it???

All this was done to make Francona look bad and the Red Sox look good.
Predictably, it backfired big time.

Former Red Sox manager Terry Francona
Francona was seen as a great guy who lost control of his clubhouse and was unnecessarily smeared on his way out the door. The damage control was laughable as Red Sox upper management ineptly scrambled to change the public perception that they had screwed a good guy over once again.

There was the uncomfortable and awkward interview with Red Sox principal owner John Henry, an unsympathetic figure if there ever was one, with local radio station, 98.5 The Sports Hub.

John Henry - not strong enough to drive railroad spikes
Henry was getting bashed on the air by radio hosts Michael Felger and Tony Massarotti during an afternoon drive time show. Henry (presumably in his limo being ferried about) got really pissed, had Jeeves drive him to the radio station, barged in (well weakly pushed the door open or had Jeeves barge in) and demanded to go on the air with Felger and Massarotti and set the record straight.

What resulted was an uncomfortable exchange with the radio hosts that made Henry look more like a buffoon than he possibly could have imagined. Felger had a field day with Henry and Henry came out looking like the elitist clown he really is.

Fast forward, the Red Sox now obviously needed a manager to appease the fan base and put them back into the forefront as one of Major League Baseball's premier franchises. They already were too late on the aforementioned John Farrell who was Francona's bench coach who went on to manage the Toronto Blue Jays.

So who did they turn to?

Why one of the most egotistical, arrogant, smug, self centered clowns in all of baseball, the inimitable, Bobby Valentine.

Bobby Valentine  after getting tossed from a game as NY Mets manager, returned to the bench in disguise
Valentine had not managed in the Major Leagues in about 10 years. He had gone to Japan and done quite well there and become an analyst for the unctuous cable network ESPN,( that's a perfect fit) but could not get a major league job. Plus Valentine is a quintessential horse's ass of the highest order.

That did it for me. I never liked Valentine, I don't like the Red Sox owners John Henry and  Tom Werner. I loathe team president Larry Lucchino. Long time Boston native General Manager Theo Epstein bought his way out with a year left on his Red Sox contract to become GM of the Chicago Cubs. Epstein was replaced by assistant Ben Cherington who was immediately neutered by Lucchino. Now with Epstein gone, Lucchino had full control of the operation.

With upper management like that and an increasingly cantankerous roster, I had enough. Even though guys like Tim Wakefield and Jason Varitek "retired" (both had to pushed out the door) there were still enough surly guys on the team.

Those are the main reasons I decided not to watch them any more. Along with that came the decision not to watch baseball any more. Like with the Bruins and the NHL, when I go, I go. And I couldn't be happier.

Here it is late July and I could care less what is happening with not only the Red Sox, but MLB. I have absolutely no interest in who's doing what and who could win the World Series.

Now that I'm this far along, here's what I found:

  • Baseball is an incredibly dull sport. It's the 600 lb. gorilla of the sports world. Guys in my age group are not supposed to acknowledge that baseball is a mind numbing, boring sport to watch. Yeah, it takes amazing skill to be baseball player as it does to be a soccer player but you won't find me watching either.
  • Statistics. I have never been a stats guy. Baseball is the stats guy's sport. This is about as exciting as reading a balance sheet to me. If you like stats, good for you, I watch sports for the action and to see people do incredible things that I can't do. Quantifying any sport in endless measurements sucks all the joy and spontaneity out of the event football included. I don't need stats to predict probabilities or measure how good someone is when my eyes can tell me. No offense to stat geeks, but that's not how I enjoy sports. I don't watch a movie and keep stats. It's all for enjoyment and entertainment. Keeping stats is a buzzkill for me.
  • Baseball players by and large are jerks. Long term guaranteed, multi-million dollar salaries are not the main reason. For some reason, baseball players are mostly cranky and uptight. Maybe it's because they have such a long season and they stand around a lot. I'm not saying there are jerks in other sports (oh, hello NBA) but baseball seems to have most of them in one place.
  • The Red Sox. Red Sox fans are some of the most whiny, entitled bitches on the planet. When you step back from something, you get a clearer picture. Red Sox Nation is an annoying collection of crybabies.The Sox won the Word Series after 86 years in 2004 and repeated in 2007 which was great. I was thrilled in 2004, 2007 was a surprise. But you would think that a fan base that has gone most of their lives following a team that has not won a championship in forever would appreciate how rare it is to win one. Nope. Not here in Boston, the Red Sox are now supposed to win the World Series every year. Not be in contention or have a team that you can like and root for, no it has to be a lock to win it all every single year now. Congratulations Boston Red Sox fans, you're now just like the people you most despise: New York Yankee fans.
  • Red Sox ownership has placed a priority on image an marketing rather than a good solid long term plan for the team on the field. Instead of taking a down year or (gasp) even two to reload and develop players, the Red Sox have taken a blinders on "we're a perennial contender" attitude. They steadfastly refuse to admit they suck. I think they're in last place right now. I don't care anymore enough to go check but I think that's where they are. Usually, most teams in that situation look to make trades to acquire young prospects in exchange for highly paid veterans that contending teams seek this time of year. It's called buyers and sellers season. The buyers are the teams that are positioning themselves for the stretch run and try to get the one or two guys that can help them win it all. The sellers are the aforementioned. Publicly, the Red Sox insist they are buyers looking for the right deal to catapult them right back into contention. Again, I'm not following them, but even I know this is delusional. Once again, Red Sox management chooses to put on the facade that everything is ok on the good ship. It's once again a slap in the face to loyal fans.
Which brings me to my final point that ties all this together. The reason I loathed Harry Sinden and the Bruins through the 80's and 90's and beyond was because they had great players like Ray Bourque and Cam Neely who they underpaid and then surrounded with a team that was just good enough to make a playoff run. All the while they were charging their faithful some of the highest ticket prices in the NHL. And when the natives became restless Sinden would go on TV and say the Bruins wouldn't kowtow to the insanity that other NHL teams follow by overpaying players. And every year, the fans would come, and every year the Bruins were not good enough to realistically compete for a Cup.

The Red Sox know that they will get 2 million plus fans to go through the turnstiles at Fenway. (oohh it's the 100th anniversary of the famous pit) And they will spend millions on overpriced beer and souvenirs. (They even tried selling commemorative bricks for $100 apiece.) But the difference is the Red Sox spend their money foolishly by overpaying big name players who can't thrive in the fishbowl of Boston baseball.


I cannot in good conscience support a team that treats its fans with such contempt just like the Bruins did way back when. 

The philosophy of "They will still come" is a slap in the face to fans who have to spend about $200-300 to go to one stinking game to watch an underachieving, unlikable team run by arrogant rich jackasses who stick their heads in the sand and lie to their fans every single day.

They view the fans as stupid marks who need to be separated from their money. And the sad fact is that there are a ton of them out there that fit that description. 

Even sadder are the fans who just love the Red Sox and will go to games and spend a ton of money because it's the Red Sox and they will follow them no matter what.

The Red Sox really should take a lesson from New England Patriots owner Bob Kraft. Kraft learned his lesson early on in the Bill Parcels era that he was not the show and has now become one of the best owners in all of American professional sports and he has built one of the most successful sports franchises in all of pro sports.

Unfortunately, this is what the rest of the country thinks Red Sox fans look like.
Unfortunately, most of them do look like this but without the paint job.
Some great things have happened since I stopped following the Red Sox:

  • I don't miss them or baseball one bit.
  • It's been a good summer not dealing all the drama that constantly surrounds this team.
  • Football is starting soon, the Patriots should be very good this year.
  • I'm really excited to see the Celtics next year with all the changes they've made.

Now let's hope the NHL doesn't lock out the players this season.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Once Around

Only Rodney Dangerfield could come up with something like this:
Rodney Dangerfield
He was recognized by the Smithsonian Institution, which put one of his trademark white shirts and red ties on display. When he handed the shirt to the museum's curator, Rodney joked, "I have a feeling you're going to use this to clean Lindbergh's plane."

And only Dangerfield could have a headstone like this:


‎'Speaking to CBS' Charlie Rose, Obama said in a 2nd term, would "need to do a better job" explaining where he's taking US.' 

That's like Captain Francesco Schettino telling cruise ship passengers he'll do a better job on the next trip

"The captain was hitting golf balls off the stern when we hit the rocks sir" 

Haha, Madonna bombs in France and gets called "Salope" which translates to a not very nice term.

Maybe Louis "Calypso Louie" Farrakhan shouldn't open a restaurant either.

A little faith in humanity restoreda, lenovo, ceo, yanqing
Very cool. Story here

For more of these great classic photos click here

Guess who gets the last laugh?

And finally

Major kudos to Christian Bale for visiting shooting victims in Aurora CO this week. Class act.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

The Chick- fil- A "What Really Should Be A Non- Controversy" Controversy

My word.
The OFFENDED have gone off the deep end yet again.

Here we have, yet again, crazy lunatics twisting words and taking comments out of context and adding innuendo that clearly wasn't part of what was said and running to the extreme.

It got to the point where a friend of mine who works for Chick-fil-A posted this on Facebook yesterday:
'Just got stopped in the parking lot by three people who wanted to know why I hate gays. Looks like I might need to change out of my chick fil a uniform before I leave now lol.'
This is a guy who just works in the restaurant on his way home and these self-righteous loons feel it's okay to assault an employee with ridiculous insinuations.

I guess it's ok to assume that everyone who works for Chick-fil-A is a homophobic, religious nutcase. 

So let's back up a bit here.

The ASSUMPTION by the OFFENDED is that the Chief Operating Officer of Chick-fil-A, Dan Cathy hates gays because of his comments in an interview with The Biblical Recorder.

Let's see what Mr. Cathy said that was so "offensive":
In a recent visit to North Carolina, Cathy said, “We don’t claim to be a Christian business.” He attended a business leadership conference many years ago where he heard Christian businessman Fred Roach say, “There is no such thing as a Christian business.”

“That got my attention,” Cathy said. Roach went on to say, “Christ never died for a corporation. He died for you and me.”

“In that spirit ... [Christianity] is about a personal relationship. Companies are not lost or saved, but certainly individuals are.” Cathy added.

“But as an organization we can operate on biblical principles. So that is what we claim to be. [We are] based on biblical principles, asking God and pleading with God to give us wisdom on decisions we make about people and the programs and partnerships we have. And He has blessed us.”
What Mr. Cathy said so far is not controversial. He's merely stating the fact that they believe in asking God for guidance when running their operation. If you do not believe in God, Jesus, or the Christian doctrine, fine., but do not lose sight of the fact that Mr. Cathy and others are perfectly within their Constitutional rights as Americans to believe what they want.

The First Amendment:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Mr. Cathy goes on in the interview to explain the company's philosophies about not opening on Sundays:

When questioned about Chick-Fil-A’s “Closed on Sunday” policy Cathy responded, “It was not an issue in 1946 when we opened up our first restaurant. But as living standards changed and lifestyles changed, people came to be more active on Sundays.” The policy has not changed over the years as malls began changing their policies by opening on Sundays. Cathy said, “We’ve always put in our lease that we will be closed on Sundays. We’ve had a track record that we were generating more business in six days than the other tenants were generating in seven [days].” “While developers had no identity whatsoever with our corporate purpose to ‘glorify God and be a faithful steward of all that is entrusted to us and have a positive influence on all that come in contact with Chick-fil-A,’ they did identify with the rent checks that we wrote to the mall, that were based on our sales. “So, they would make an exception for Chick-fil-A when they wouldn’t make an exception for anybody else, simply because they knew we would pay them more in rent than any other tenant would that was open even seven days a week.”
Again, nothing controversial unless you want Chick-fil-A on Sunday.

Here is apparently, what OFFENDED  lunatics like the increasingly irrelevant Rosanne Barr:
The company invests in Christian growth and ministry through their WinShape Foundation (WinShape.com). The name comes from the idea of shaping people to be winners. It began as a college scholarship and expanded to a foster care program, an international ministry, and a conference and retreat center modeled after the Billy Graham Training Center at the Cove. “That morphed into a marriage program in conjunction with national marriage ministries,” Cathy added.
 Some have opposed the company’s support of the traditional family. “Well, guilty as charged,” said Cathy when asked about this opposition. “We are very much supportive of the family – the biblical definition of the family unit. We are a family-owned business, a family-led business, and we are married to our first wives. We give God thanks for that. “We operate as a family business ... our restaurants are typically led by families – some are single. We want to do anything we possibly can to strengthen families. We are very much committed to that,” Cathy emphasized. “We intend to stay the course. We know that it might not be popular with everyone, but thank the Lord, we live in a country where we can share our values and operate on biblical principles.”
This is where liberals and those who get so easily  OFFENDED should read what was said before going off half-cocked and make wild accusations.

The enlightened among us loves to label people who make statements like this as INTOLERANT and HATEFUL when that is JUST WHAT THEY ARE BEING when making these accusations.

Mr. Cathy and every single person in this country are ENTITLED to believe whatever it is they want to believe including bigoted, hateful ideology which is NOT what Mr. Cathy is espousing.

Mr. Cathy was simply stating his beliefs that he supports a traditional family. 

He did not say that he condemns non-traditional families.

What if Mr. Cathy came out and said he likes chocolate ice cream? 
Are people going to slay him because they ASSUME he hates vanilla ice cream???

See how ridiculous this can get?????

It's the same thing. He said he supports traditional families because those are his values. From all accounts there are ZERO cases of anyone being discriminated against by Chick-fil-A and their employees. How anyone can make the leap that Mr. Cathy and Chick-fil-A are bigots is simply ridiculous.

Oh, and Roseanne Barr, ever classy as she always is, had this to say about Chick-fil-A on Twitter:
“anyone who eats S--- Fil-A deserves to get the cancer that is sure to come from eating antibiotic filled tortured chickens 4Christ,”
OK, Roseanne. I sincerely hope you're getting residual checks from reruns of your old show.

Which brings us to our esteemed Mayor of Boston Massachusetts, His Honor Thomas "Mumbles" Menino.

For those of you not familiar with Mayor Menino, I give you the above video which will give you an idea of how he's earned the nickname 'Mumbles". Not only is the mayor prone to gaffes in virtually every speech or statement he makes, he's a bully who has no problem throwing his considerable weight around.

Mayor Menino weighed in on the Chick-fil-A controversy because Chick-fil-A has intentions of opening a restaurant in Boston where the Purple Shamrock Pub is currently located when their lease expires. (their leaving because their lease is going up 60% - gotta love Boston!)

Mayor Menino warned Chick-fil-A that they are not welcome in the City of Boston (he also has done this to WalMart)

Menino was quoted by The Boston Herald as saying:
 “Chick-fil-A doesn’t belong in Boston. You can’t have a business in the City of Boston that discriminates against a population. We’re an open city, we’re a city that’s at the forefront of inclusion.”
Incorrect Mr. Mayor. Chick-fil-A does not discriminate against a population! Why I bet anyone with money can belly up to the counter and order some food without any problem no matter what they are.

And I'm positive that Menino said "scriminates" when he dictated the letter.

And true to his bellicose, ham-fisted political style, Mumbles fired off a letter to Chick-fil-A COO Dan Cathy:

Now please reread the above quotes from Mr. Cathy and even read the full article here.
Nowhere in either did Mr. Cathy say he opposed same-sex marriage nor did he say the "generation that supports it has an arrogant attitude".

Where Mumbles got that is beyond the pale.

Another grandstanding political event that unfortunately is far too common these days at the expense of common sense. Why are all these politicians so happy to fan the flames and make mountains out of molehills like this? 


This all out attack is similar to the distortions espoused by the left with the Blunt Amendment which somehow got twisted into a "Republican War Against Women". (Patent pending)

Here is the gist of the amendment that caused all the controversy:
Until enactment of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Public Law 111– 148, in this section referred to as ‘‘PPACA’’), the Federal Government has not sought to impose specific coverage or care requirements that infringe on the rights of conscience of insurers, purchasers of insurance, plan sponsors, beneficiaries, and other stakeholders, such as individual or institutional health care providers.
PPACA creates a new nationwide requirement for health plans to cover ‘‘essential health benefits’’ and ‘‘preventive services’’ (including a distinct set of ‘‘preventive services for women’’), delegating to the Department of Health and Human Services the authority to provide a list of detailed services under each category, and imposes other new requirements with respect to the provision of health care services. While PPACA provides an exemption for some religious groups that object to participation in Government health programs generally, it does not allow purchasers, plan sponsors, and other stakeholders with religious or moral objections to specific items or services to decline providing or obtaining coverage of such items or services, or allow health care providers with such objections to decline to provide them.
By creating new barriers to health insurance and causing the loss of existing insurance arrangements, these inflexible mandates in
PPACA jeopardize the ability of individuals to exercise their rights of conscience and their ability to freely participate in the health insurance and health care marketplace. 

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act would force religious institutions to provide birth control which runs counter to the core beliefs of some institutions. For the government to impose this on them is unconstitutional. This as I mentioned above, was twisted into the "Republican War Against Women". (Patent pending).

How about we call this the "Government's War Against Religion"?

It's increasingly disturbing to see the political push for more and more government infringement into our lives by the likes of New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who wants to limit the size of soft drinks that can be sold in the city. Yet, this is the mindset of these politicians who feel that it is their duty to protect the public from themselves at the expense of liberties. And anyone who really thinks about this and still comes to the conclusion that indeed the government should impose restrictions on the likes of soda size is giving in to the socialism that has infected far too many politicians.

Tolerance means putting up with stuff you don't agree with.
Which is protected by The Constitution of The United States of America.


Mr. Cathy and Chick-fil-A are entitled to have a corporate philosophy that they believe in as long as it does no harm to others. I see none done here.

Stop being so OFFENDED.

Update: Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino repeated today that he doesn’t want Chick-fil-A in Boston, but he backed away from a threat to actively block the fast-food chain from setting up shop in the city.
“I can’t do that. That would be interference to his rights to go there,” Menino said, referring to company president Dan Cathy, who drew the mayor’s wrath by going public with his views against same-sex marriage.
The mayor added: “I make mistakes all the time. That’s a Menino-ism.”