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Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Roger Answers Your Questions, Scott and Gordon

Our first contestant is soon-to-be-daddy again Scott from Scooter Chronicles:

1. In a previous post, you predicted the winners of each MLB division. Who do you think wins the league pennants, and who wins the World Series?

Once you get to a short series, there are so many variables so it's hard to say. It wouldn't surprise me if it's a wild card like the Boston Red Sox. And, shades, of 1986, I'm going to pick the Mets to beat them.

By the way, Scott - you NEED this: a free, 586-page PDF of the Emerald Guide to Baseball 2009.

2. What is your take on the AIG bonuses? Where do you think the government needs to take this?

First, those noting that the bonuses were a small percentage of the bailout are correct. Second, the first point is totally irrelevant; AIG is totally tone deaf. I've been REALLY uncomfortable with this "too big to fail" label; gives these companies a feeling of entitlement. Given the fact that the average American didn't even know what AIG WAS a year ago, it's unsurprising. The only time I ever saw them was on advertisements on Sunday morning talk shows. So their audience was never the average American, it was the DC movers and shakers.

At this point, with over a sixth of a TRILLION dollars already in, the government isn't going to say to AIG, "Go ahead, go bankrupt," though those bonuses could have been voided if it had. Some of the bonus monies are going to be given back - or deducted from the next check. But if the government is going to nationalize these companies, and they have all but done so - whatever you want to call it - they damn well better job of setting the rules of engagement for giving away lending OUR money. Politically, if not economically, I think the administration needs to try the "clawback" of AIG bonuses; I know that New York State's Attorney General, Andrew Cuomo, has been looking at the contracts as well. Here's an interesting article about other money our government might try to recover.

3. Who is your favorite musician? Could be a member of a band, or a solo artist, or whomever. But specifically, a musician.

This is probably influenced somewhat by my birthday present, the 2004 Crossroads Guitar Festival DVD, but I guess I'll pick Eric Clapton. The stuff on the Yardbirds, Derek and the Dominoes, Blind Faith, his early solo stuff, and especially Cream moved me greatly, and that concert showed that sometimes, he's still got it.

4. What is your favorite season of the year?

Spring, beginning of new life. It gets warmer. Oddly, it's also still in Lent, so I get to sing the more mournful stuff in church.

5. Did you read "Watchmen"? If so, what did you think of it? Have any interest in seeing the movie?

I read Watchmen when it came out, and I liked it a lot at the time. I feel as though I should read it again either before or after I see the movie.

Next up, social network maven Gordon from Blog THIS, Pal!

1. Taking a quick business trip to NY City, I want to visit again...but I also want to do more out-of-the-way, quirky places as well as the usual tourist-y stuff. Any suggestions?

The Queens Public Library. Serving the most diverse county in the country, it has a wide variety of collections.

2. Your preliminary thoughts on these early days of the Obama presidency - is he doing right? Way off course?

I have some reservations, but I'm more pleased than displeased. The stuff on Iraq, stem cell research, Gitmo, and much of the stimulus I'm for, especially the emphasis on GREEN jobs and the part about health care, in part because of this story, something Scott has blogged about recently. I loved his apology over the Daschle nomination.

But I'm still not convinced that we're not going into a quagmire in Afghanistan, as the Soviet Union did, if we're not already, and more troops might not help. Also, there were a LOT of vacancies in the Treasury Department with a lot to do. I know he inherited TARP, but it rather stinks.

The other question I'll hold in abeyance.

Still taking more questions!

ROG

2 comments:

Rebecca Hickman said...

I love the Queens Borough Library! It was my first post-MLS full-time job.

Scott said...

Good answers! Though I disagree with your choice of NL pennant winner. (Not that I think the Phillies will repeat either.)

And thanks for the link!