Friday, March 28, 2014

Friday Dispatches: Sheldon Goes Shopping, Another Problem for GM, and an Inappropriate Ad in the Tube

Our old pal, Sheldon Adelson is back in the political mix. NBC and the Washington Post are reporting that over the weekend he will be having heart to heart chats with NJ Governor, Chris Christie, WI, Governor Scott Walker, former FL Governor, Jeb Bush, and OH Governor, John Kasich. All of the gentlemen are mulling over presidential runs

They'll be in Adelson's home town of Las Vegas the next couple of days speaking to the Republican Jewish Coalition. Between the VIP dinner held in Adelson's private airplane hanger, a round of golf, a poker tournament, and a scotch tasting, Shelly will be conducting what amounts to job interviews. Neither media outlet was willing to describe the private visits as that, although the Post came close when it referred to the weekend as, "the Sheldon primary."

Well why not? Let's face it, presidential campaigns aren't cheap and when a man is willing to spend millions and millions of dollars on one he should be able to make an informed decision on which middle aged white guy to buy.

NBC noted Rand Paul would not be attending and speculated because of his views on Israel, Adelson is not only uninterested in backing him, but might spend some large chunks of change trying to make sure he is defeated in the primary season. It is unclear if Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, and Paul Ryan are also in the Adelson dog house, or if they've been quizzed separately on other occasions.

All of this might make more than a few of us a tad queasy. Especially when we admit to ourselves that a man who could end up President of the United States has, at one point, groveled--tin cup in hand--in front of a guy who made his considerable fortune in the gambling industry. Indeed, in some quarters, the word bribery might even be bandied about. However, one must keep in mind the sheer magnitude of the numbers involved. In 2012 Sheldon Adelson spent $93 million trying to get someone other than Barack Obama into the white house. That sort of largesse will cause even the most seasoned politician to pull on the old knee pads and perform prolonged acts of fellatio whenever and wherever asked.

Meanwhile, General Motors has issued a stop sale order to dealerships involving the 2013 and 2014 editions of the Chevrolet Cruze. True to form, GM has yet to explain why, but NBC reports experts say when something like this happens it usually has to do with a safety issue.

Sound familiar? It should. GM is already in the midst of a massive recall involving a number of models because of ignition switch problems. NBC also says, of the 1.6 million flawed vehicles involved at least 1.4 million are still on the road--1.2 million of them here in the United States. By the corporation's own admission at least 12 people have died in accidents directly related to the defect.

Elsewhere, the hunt for Malaysian Airlines flight 370 continues with spectacular  non success. The search has now shifted about 700 miles north east of where authorities had been looking in the southern Indian Ocean. Not one of the tantalizing objects photographed by satellites, or spotted by airplanes has been recovered. So, in truth, there is still no concrete evidence of the missing Boeing 777's location, or fate.

And finally, British Airways has pulled an ad in the London subway system which told riders to, "Escape the commute and discover the Indian Ocean." It featured an undersea photo stretching off into blue infinity. The airline admitted the timing of the advertisement was, "inappropriate."

There we have it. Another week is in the books.

As always, stay low, don't bunch up, and for God's sake keep moving.


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