Golden Parachutes for Failure

We would like to document a few facts about golden parachutes amidst the taxpayer bailout of Wall Street. Fannie Mae CEO Daniel Mudd last year received $8.4 million in compensation. They year before he received $12.2 million in compensation. He started with Fannie Mae in June of 2005; the stock was at $36.00 a share today it is worth $3.16. Next on our hit list is his counterpart at Freddie Mac. That is where CEO Richard Syron was due to receive up to $15.5 million on 2008. Syron was paid $19.8 million in compensation in 2007. When he started at Freddie Mac in 2003 the stock was at $56.13 a share, today it trades at $1.41. The Federal government is trying to stop all further payments to these men. We then move to Lehman Brothers where CEO Richard S. Fuld Jr was paid more than $40 million in 2007 alone, which included a huge amount of restricted stock. He has stated he would forgo a bonus this year. When he was named CEO at Lehman Brothers in 1993 their common stock value was $27.16 today it is worthless. Ousted Sovereign Bancorp Inc. CEO Joseph Campanelli will receive $8.4 million in a severance agreement. The reward is two years salary, bonus pay and an enhanced retirement plan. He was hired in 1999 as CEO when the bank shares traded at $13.57, eight years later the bank share price now stands at $5.62. Washington Mutual, CEO Kerry Killinger had received compensation valued at $14.4 million in 2007. He started as CEO at Washington Mutual in 1991; the common stock price was $24.96 today the stock is worth .11 cents. Lastly, we looked at American International Group CEO Martin Sullivan. He received compensation last year of $13.9 million as well as $15 million in severance pay and a $4 million bonus as his reign ended in June of 2008. The stock in 1997 when he started as CEO was $98.56 a share, when he left it was $26.05. He was replaced by Robert Willumstad, to his credit he told the A.I.G board that he would not accept $22 million compensation he was owed as the stock dropped from $26.05 to $3.87 while he was in charge. We will revisit and see where these folks wind up as we think we will hear from the again.

Dad can I borrow the car tonight?

Ford is changing the way kids drive the family car. Starting 2010 when a son or daughter borrows their parent’s car, they will be a new spy along for the ride. There will be a chip implanted into the car key. This key can be programmed to limit the car speed to 80mph, radio volume control, sound alerts for seat belt use, and it can chime an alert when the car goes over 45 miles per hour up to 80 and anywhere in between. The new feature is called MyKey and it has not be decided how many Ford will have the feature but it will spread to Lincoln and Mercury line as well. Ford say s that this is a way to let parents feel better about giving over the keys more often. They did not ask new teenage drivers what they though of the program. The Ford Focus is the first car out the gate with the new feature. The big brother approach to not trusting your children is on an upswing as many auto insurers are offering in-car cameras or global positioning equipment to help parents monitor their children is driving habits. There is some technology we are glad was not around when we were kids. We loved to take dad’s big old Ford LTD to do doughnuts during a snow storm when you get a car skidding out of control like that the speedometer goes through the roof. If the parents could have controlled the radio volume how would we have ever listened to that radio full blast as we tooled down Main Street with the windows down.
Countdown to the second presidential debate Tonight
Countdown to the third presidential debate: 10 days
Countdown to Election Day 2008: 29 days
Countdown to Inauguration Day 2009: 106 days

Sowing all your wild oats
In another’s luxuries
Yesterday was Tuesday
Maybe Thursday you can sleep
W. Axl Rose My Michelle (1987)

Megan Fox – Star Power


This week we are featuring Megan Denise Fox who was born May 16, 1986. She is an American actress and model. She was born in Oak Ridge, Tennessee while growing up in Rockwood, Tennessee. When she reached the age of ten her family moved to St. Petersburg, Florida, her birth name had two x’s, she cut one off when she entered show business. In 1999, she won the American Modeling and Talent Convention in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. Her first acting role was in 2001 Holiday in the Sun, a straight to video Mary Kate, and Ashley Olsen twin movie. In 2004, she appeared in Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen and a Television role on The Help. That year she was also noticed on television for her role in the show Hope & Faith. She completely exploded into the main stream with her role in the Michael Bay Transformers movie. She held her own on the screen and was an absolute presence on the screen. She is about to appear in How to Lose Friends & Alienate People, with Kirsten Dunst and Jeff Bridges and a movie Whore in 2008. She is in production on Jennifer’s Body to be released in 2009; the Fathom is also slated for a 2009 release. She has also signed on to be in sequels of Transformers, which there is going to be a two and three. She has nine tattoos on her body; our favorites are the bull’s eye on her back and the Marilyn Monroe on her right arm. She can light up the screen and is always a presence in celluloid, but she can also strut the red carpet like no other. She is one of the hottest actresses in Hollywood right now and we definitely have our eyes on her.
Countdown to the second presidential debate 1 day
Countdown to the third presidential debate: 11 days
Countdown to Election Day 2008: 30 days
Countdown to Inauguration Day 2009: 107 days

Just an urchin livin’ under the street
I’m a hard case that’s tough to beat
W. Axl Rose Paradise City (1987)

Timothy John Berners-Lee – Thanks

Today we would like to highlight someone who we have never meet but changed all our lives. Sir Timothy John Berners-Lee was born June 8, 1955 is a computer scientist, who is credited with inventing the World Wide Web. The date was December 25, 1990 when he implemented the first successful communication between an HTTP client and server via the Internet, thus the Information Super Highway was born. He is now the director of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), which oversees the Web’s continued development. He is also the founder of the World Wide Web Foundation. The first Web site built was at CERN and was first put online on August 6 1991. It provided an explanation about what the World Wide Web was how one could own a browser and how to set up a Web server. It was also the world’s first Web directory, since Berners-Lee maintained a list of other Web sites apart from his own. To bad he did not think about becoming Google. We highlight this person because as most people the use of computer and the World Wide Web is any integrated part of our lives. We at tea512 make a living using and working with computers so there is even more praise needed for this person. The invention of the computer would be used in business so that part of my job would be there, we also believe that because of the WWW, there is more need for all business function to work online through WWW. Countdown to the second presidential debate 3 days
Countdown to the third presidential debate: 13 days
Countdown to Election Day 2008: 32 days
Countdown to Inauguration Day 2009: 109 days

And I don’t worry about nothin’ no
‘Cause worrin’s a waste of my… time
W. Axl Rose Mr Brownstone (1987)

VP Debate Insider vs. Outsider

Last nights debate from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri moderated by Gwen Ifill. This was the first and the only 2008 vice presidential debate between the Republican nominee, Governor Sarah Palin of Alaska, and the Democratic nominee, Senator Joe Biden of Delaware. We are not going to bother with who won or who lost. These debates are only filled with talking point “x” to match keyword question “x”. What was different for a republican was her down home approach to Main Street she referred to “go to a kid’s soccer game on Saturday,” and “Joe Six Pack, hockey moms across the nation.” She also used simple straight-ahead approach in trying to convey a message “But I will tell Americans straight up” and “learn from the mistakes and blunders we have seen in the war in Iraq” these are phrases that have long been missing from presidential debates. Then there were her folksy, down home style of phrasing that she used, “Darn right it was the predator lenders”, “darn right we need tax relief for Americans”, “Tillerson at Exxon and Mulva at ConocoPhillips, bless their hearts” “That’s where the Main Streeters like me.”  where a few classic touches. She used a refreshing style that lent itself to a person talking to you in a coffee shop with things like “we both love Israel, and I think that is a good thing”,“Oh, yeah, it’s so obvious I’m a Washington outsider”, and “a little bit of reality from Wasilla Main Street.” She made her debate style of using a simple language we all use instead of trying to say the perfect word, so she spoke like an average human being. Things like “Say it ain’t so, Joe, there you go again pointing backwards again”, “Now doggone it, let’s look ahead”, “we have folks of all political persuasion in there”  and “Middle-class, average, everyday American family like mine.” If you are wondering, they used the word maverick a total of 13 times, only five for Governor Sarah Palin, and eight for Senator Joe Biden. The only problem is this is the one time this is going to happen; it would be interesting to see if she could hold up this routine another night. This also might crumble in a Lincoln-Douglas debate, but that does not matter we will never see that ever again.

Countdown to the second presidential debate 5 days
Countdown to the third presidential debate: 14 days
Countdown to Election Day 2008: 33 days
Countdown to Inauguration Day 2009: 110 days

Been hidin’ out
And layin’ low 
It’s nothing new to me
W. Axl Rose Out to Get Me (1987)

Debate Ratings Surprise

Here is some good news for ABC for whatever reason, which we have no idea why. On this the day of the Vice Presidential, debate from St. Louis, Missouri that will be moderated by Gwen Ifill. The first debate between McCain and Obama was ratings win for which network, ABC. That is right we said ABC, why we do not know but numbers do not lie. During the nine pm hour on that Friday night which includes the actual debate. This is not the talking heads before; this was the actual face-to-face debate. The rating for the alphabet net was a 6.4/10 against NBC 4.9/8, and CBS 4.8/8. This is impressive and is a credit to the strides the news department at ABC has made. The coverage was hosted by Charlie Gibson and George Stephanopoulos, although for this hour there were not even on the screen. The terribly week CBS news department is the reason they are number three you can blame anyone from Bob Schieffer to Katie Couric. The vacuum that was left by the death of Tim Russert at NBC and the guilt by association with MSNBC could be the reason for the lag over there. This could even be because the viewer watches that channel for late local news. This will be an interesting ratings war to watch, as it has nothing to do with people, opinion, or a Fox, CNN type battle. In an interesting side note, will the debate over the next leader of the free world the plenty of people who choose to watch CW showing of Smackdown had received a rating of 2.5/4.

Countdown to the vice presidential debate: Tonight
Countdown to the second presidential debate 7 days
Countdown to the third presidential debate: 15 days
Countdown to Election Day 2008: 34 days
Countdown to Inauguration Day 2009: 111 days

Said I’m a mean machine
Been drinkin’ gasoline
An honey you can make my motor hum
W.Axl Rose Nightrain (1987)

High School is great on the CW

There is a network called CW, which has a trio of shows we have come across. These shows are for teenagers and all carry a TV14 rating. The shows we are focusing on are 90210(2008), Gossip Girl, and Privileged, they are part of my home DVR because my house is filled with young girls. Therefore, these shows were on my television over the weekend. As all of my readers we went to high school, we know the high school on TV is never close to real high school. So first 90210 this show is about rich kids actually all three shows are about rich kids in high school. This week on 90210 there was a boy who gave his sister a condom, he had been holding for what he says was four years. The boy is a sophomore in high school and is 16. He has been holding on to a condom since he was twelve. This is stupid because would any sane person trust a four year old condom? The other two shows Gossip Girl and Privileged are high society kids who spend hours at high-class parties. These shows the kids are drinking all the time. They are drinking from champagne flutes, or martini glasses, there is never the implied drinking where they say lets get appletini’s or a bottle of cristal. We have just come a long way and maybe they went too far. As stated before, television never could match the intensity of high school for a teenager. There is a problem with these shows making it seem that this will be the new status quo of how teenage life should be. We went to high school and knew it all about sex, parties, and getting through it. These shows the kids walk into bars and get served, take over hotels and get served. These things make the storyline flow but we wonder with a 13-16 audience, if it is not doing more harm then good. At what cost is ratings, how a bout a little integrity in the plot.

Countdown to the vice presidential debate: 1 days
Countdown to the second presidential debate 8 days
Countdown to the third presidential debate: 16 days
Countdown to Election Day 2008: 35 days
Countdown to Inauguration Day 2009: 112 days

So come with me
Don’t ask me where
cause I don’t know
W. Axl Rose It’s So Easy (1987)