Opinions, Etc. 12.24.03

I’m going to dash off a very quick one, because I’ve got some business to take care of here in Lincoln, then head back down to work to debrief the boss about said business (and pick up the Damn Vaninator, which will only be ready this morning), then get my ass back to Chicago.  Besides, I only slept about two hours at a time last night because I was trotting more than eight tiny reindeer.  It’s going to be an interesting drive back, let me assure you.

LET’S SPIN IT THIS WAY:  IT’S GOING TO BE REALLY GOOD FOR OUR BUSINESS

The United States has confirmed that, yes, indeed, there has been a beef cattle with bovine spongioform encephalopathy found inside the country.  Ah, Mad Cow Disease…we in the biz were expecting this ever since the Canadians started to have cases show up.  That immediately prompted Russia, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Malaysia, and Singapore to ban US beef imports.

First it was rising beef prices.  Now it’s BSE, with various and sundry yoyos screaming for mandatory testing, which will make beef prices skyrocket even more, since USDA will, as usual, give in to the alarmists.  For those of us in the poultry industry, it’s glad tidings.  As more Americans turn back to chicken, the more money my company makes.  And since I’m on a profit sharing plan, the more money I make.  Cool.  Money made on the back of other humans’ misery is a true pleasure.  All of you need to try it sometime.

What makes me giggle is that the cow in question was found in Washington State.  That’s the same state where the outbreak of bad burgers in 1995 led to some major law changes regarding beef and proved to be the spark plug to altering the entire system of meat inspection in the United States.  You know what?  If the beef industry doesn’t want any future trauma, they should ban all beef from Washington State.  Stop the next problem before it starts.

I think I’ll expand in this one in a column at Fleabag’s next week after I get back.  It’s too interesting to let go.

CLOSURE, AND A VICTORY FOR ALL OF US OBSERVERS OF THE SOCIAL CONDITION

Lenny Bruce had a helluva lot of obscenity trials under his belt in the mid-60s when his stand-up comedy act “offended” authority by going after sacred cows and using words that you can use on pay cable today.  He also was found guilty a few times, including once, I’m ashamed to say, in Chicago.  But all his convictions were overturned on the basis of the First Amendment.  Except for one.  A decision in Noo Yawk, where Lenny served four months, still stood on his record.  Yesterday, 37 years after his death, he was officially pardoned for that “crime”.  Since I regard Lenny as someone at the Right Hand of God, I’m actually pleased and excited at this turn of events.  George Pataki has proved once again that he’s one of the Good Republicans by doing this.  And I think Lenny would have been pleased by it too.  Bravo.

THAT’S IT?  TWO INCREDIBLY SHORT BLURBS?

Yeah, that’ll have to be it.  As I said, I only have a short amount of time right now before I have a meeting here in town, and then it’s back to Chicago, but I’ll get some pimps in:

Laflin reviews Links 2004.  Links on a console…I thought I’d never see the day.

My favorite tag team partner Rob has a Christmas Eve movies column out there for you.

Nute does a Best-Of thing in Wrestling.

And over here in Black, there’s Fernandez, Erhardt, and, of course, Monroe on Beer.

As I said, sorry about the shortness, but I really have no time right now.  I’ll see you next week.  Until then, have a happy and safe holiday season.