The first thing I do when I wake up every morning is take a pee. And this makes no sense to me. I mean I’ve already gotten up to take a leak multiple times during the night, it’s the scourge of the enlarged prostate, you’ll be familiar with it if you live long enough. And the funny thing is sometimes I’ve only peed forty five minutes before. You know, when you wake up but it’s still too early to get up and you ultimately lie in bed until the appointed time? How can I still have pee less than an hour later? I never wake up dry, I’m flummoxed.

After that I find some clothes. Although I’m cool with walking around the house naked, but that’s not Felice’s style. And I always debate what I’m going to wear, is it going to last the whole day long? I mean we had a cold streak here in L.A. last week, I broke out the heavy sweatpants and the long-sleeve t-shirts, but if it warms up during the day I might change to a short-sleeve t, and am I going to wear the same clothes later? And then I remember there’s a washer and dryer in the house, that I can wear as many clothes as I want and never freak out that the closet is bare, I can just fire up the machines. Yes, that’s my idea of living, of making it, when you have your own washer and dryer.

And then I get my phone. I do not keep it by my bed. Then I’d never get to sleep, I get e-mail all through the night. And you know you can’t resist that chime. And then there are the people who complain if you e-mail or text them after eleven, sometimes nine or ten, it’s a rule, you get old and you must go to bed earlier. Why would you want to wake up when it’s dark? Don’t these people know you can silence the ringer/chime? But oldsters are not tech-savvy. Now I’ll get e-mail from those who are. So this rule doesn’t apply to you, nothing is completely black and white, get over it.

And the first thing I do when I pick up my phone is look at the messages on the lock screen. I scroll through them, see if anything’s mega-important. And if there is, I open that message immediately, although for some reason I understand messages better on my computer than my phone, maybe because it’s all on one screen, I don’t have to scroll, end result being I sometimes get all heated up when the truth is I shouldn’t be, but I don’t know this until I fire up my computer and then…if there are no important messages, I start going to my sites.

There are too many of them. But usually I start with the “New York Times,” to see if the world blew up. And then it’s the “Washington Post.” And then I go to the “Los Angeles Times” and the “Wall Street Journal” and then I start scrolling my Twitter feed, which is in order of posting, I don’t believe in the algorithm, there’s no algorithm that replicates the needs and wants of a person.

Did I tell you I do all this on the pot?

Yes, that’s my secret space. And sometimes I don’t even have to go number two but I sit down anyway. And unless I have an obligation, I’m usually on the throne for about half an hour, catching up, before I go into the kitchen and read the newspapers, which are really yesterday’s news, some of which I’ve already seen.

And after scrolling through my Twitter feed, and I use an app with no ads, but I don’t want to tell you which one, because then they’ll eliminate it, I go back to the “New York Times,” to go beyond the headlines, to take the temperature of the country, to get up to speed.

And this morning, they already posted tomorrow’s Maureen Dowd column. She nailed it last week, but she usually doesn’t. She gets caught up in style and analogy and the ultimate result is blah. And then I see that Kara Swisher wrote about Elon Musk and Twitter. Okay, she’s got wider distribution than me, she’s gonna trump me, but despite a strong beginning, which Kara is famous for, the piece petered out, made no new points, gave no new insights, so I won that battle. Did I tell you I’m competitive? You probably are too, but the only person you tell is yourself.

And then I find this piece in the Business section entitled:

“How Jack Welch’s Reign at G.E. Gave Us Elon Musk’s Twitter Feed – The Onetime ‘manager of the century’ paved the way for C.E.O.s to moonlight as internet trolls.”:

Now I’m sick of reading about Jack Welch, because the truth is he cooked the books at G.E. and after he left the whole enterprise crumbled. Makes me crazy when these self-promoting crooks are lionized. But
‘internet troll’? That didn’t compute.

Yes, I’d forgotten how Welch supported Trump and was spewing lies about Obama online. But I do remember how his successors couldn’t salvage the company, selling one division after another, getting out of the lauded finance business to the point where the G.E. of yore is no longer going to exist.

But I’m reading this article and this is exactly what this guy is saying! No one could hit their projected targets for years without financial shenanigans. Welch used the finance unit to make the numbers right. Forget the underlying business, it was all about keeping Wall Street happy and getting paid, beaucoup bucks, Welch’s severance package was $417 million!

But then it got worse. The author started talking about how Welch’s proteges had gone on to ruin one company after another. Yes, it was a Welch acolyte who ran Boeing into not only the ground, but trouble. The same guy who operated out of St. Louis instead of Chicago where the previous Welch follower took the company for tax reasons.

Yes, this was the Welch paradigm. Cut costs, make the numbers look right and then pay yourself handsomely. And that’s the game being played today.

And then there was that article in the “Wall Street Journal.” I found this in the physical copy. Yes, you see things in the printed version you don’t see online. They’re there online, but you consume the news differently on a screen, you want the headlines, you don’t go that deep, after all you have no TIME!

“Mercedes-Benz’s Luxury Pitch Needs Tougher Road Testing – Consumers see the German car brand as more luxurious than investors do. Only smooth driving in stormy conditions can bridge the gap.”:

That article is behind a paywall, because only the headlines are available for free, if you want the complete news you’ve got to pay for it, and most people don’t want to, and therefore they’re subject to television, which tells you so much less under the pretense you’re being told more, and just gets its news from the “Times” anyway. But if you could read it you’d find out that…

People love their MBZ’s. The company is making big bucks. It’s just that the stock price does not reflect this. So the CEO’s solution? He’s gonna stop making cheaper cars and change the mix to focus on ever more expensive upscale luxury ones to improve the margins. You know, ones that start at a hundred thousand euros, which is a hundred and six thousand dollars, and you know the euro is tanking against the dollar, don’t you? It’s a good time to go to the EU, assuming you’ve already had Omicron and don’t venture too close to Ukraine.

This is completely contrary to the MBZ focus of decades. Yes, get people hooked on the brand because then they’ll keep on moving up the ladder. That’s the game in the car world, hook ’em and keep ’em. And if you lease it’s played even harder, they’re always trying to get you to re-up, and they’ll forgo physical damage and too many miles to get you behind the wheel of a brand new car. But this guy doesn’t care about the business, the brand, the cars, he only cares about the MONEY, Wall Street!

But this guy won’t be there too long anyway. The people who run these companies are rarely car guys, rarely experts in the field at any company, they’re financial engineers, satiating Wall Street. If the company suffers in the process? So be it, that’s ultimately somebody else’s problem.

Jack Welch is dead. Youngsters probably have no idea who he is. They probably stopped teaching his philosophy at business school, then again that’s a problem, people don’t want to get an MBA anymore, not in the same numbers.

You makes your money and you keep it! Doesn’t matter what happens thereafter. The story on Wall Street is how all the stockholders are voting against corporate pay packages, but that’s only symbolic, there are no teeth in that vote under the law.

And one can say Jack Welch is responsible for these insane executive pay packages. Yup, you’ve got to pay the new guy what his peers are getting, who get what they’re getting because some guy who worked at G.E. got overpaid to begin with!

But I’m just sitting by the side of the road observing all this.

You can’t criticize anybody who makes big bucks. That’s what outsiders don’t know about the music business. No one cares about the art, they only care about the money! The acts come and go, the suits remain. The decision is based on money, the exec’s pay, not the act’s pay. Of course there are exceptions, people give lip service to the opposite take, but don’t believe it, people say one thing and do another all day long.

As for the Jack Welch style, of cooking the books, EMI was famous for this, shipping product at the end of the year to make their numbers, so the execs got bonuses, and then the retailers ultimately returned the product, after the execs banked the cash. Guy Hands realized all this, tried to make it news, but the record biz is an inside game, so he was excised, after grossly overpaying for the assets to begin with, based on these cooked numbers. Quick, who was running Capitol, EMI’s flagship American label, when Hands bought EMI? You’ve got no idea, but be sure that person was paid seven figures per annum, at least.

And as opposed to wanting to put a stake in the heart of these business practices, the outsiders, the hoi polloi, just want to get in. That’s the goal of a “musician” today, to become a brand. They want that money!

And the GOP stripped the IRS, so your odds of getting audited are higher if you’re poor, which makes no sense whatsoever, and in truth there are not enough auditors to go over the returns anyway. So, you hire an expensive lawyer that cooks up a gray scheme and you’re never caught and if you are you blame it on the attorneys and accountants, disproving intent, so you don’t go to jail. As for payment? If there’s one at all, there’s a settlement.

Everything I said above is true. Tell yourself otherwise, listen to scuttlebutt, both on the TV and the computer, saying different, but that’s either intentional obfuscation or ignorance. If people found out how the game is really played, they’d be up in arms, totally pissed! Instead, they’re focused on a “stolen” election with no provable fraud whatsoever. And you’re surprised these business people skate?

That’s America folks. That’s the country you live in. Where who is lauded today is exposed thereafter, but the conveyor belt of news moves so fast the story is buried, or it was too long in the past to worry about, or the perp is now dead, and the big wheel keeps on turnin’, and then one day you find out you missed the gravy train or…

You realize it when you’re still playing the game, and you form a union. This is Amazon’s, Starbucks’ and the car companies’ worst nightmare. “You can’t form a union, it will affect our profits, it will affect our stock!” People are fungible, but the company must carry on. And first and foremost investors must get a return on their money.

And like the record company titans of yore, rather than give workers what they deserve, their royalties, they give them a Cadillac, or some other token that’s worth less than what they’re entitled to.

And if you expose all this, if you agitate for change, you’re excoriated, because no one wants to admit they’re a failure, or their career is stalled, they’ve been sold the American Dream, which George Carlin has labeled a nightmare, and he’s right.


Make America Great Again?

These are the same leaders who ruined it for everybody but themselves. As for change, it must happen slowly, unless it benefits the rich, like tax cuts.

So these problems will only be resolved when people wake up.

But that’s too painful, which is why so many take drugs. I mean how could you work some of these jobs straight? And it’s Purdue Pharma and Wall Street who created this mess. Got the public hooked, after the prescriptions ran out they went to heroin, sold by Mexicans, which is now laced with fentanyl, which is killing our youth 24/7.

But it’s their fault, they must take personal responsibility.

Well when do these corporations take responsibility, the people making these decisions?


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