Don's Blog: October 2012

Clay Shaw/Man of a Million Fragments: The True Story of Clay Shaw/Dueling Voices/I Lost It at the Beginning/101 Reasons Not To Murder The Entire Saudi Royal Family/He Knew Where He Was Going (?)

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Hal Sorkin To Leave Consulting Work, Start A Manufacturing Company

In the news today, a group of British gastrointestinal specialists reported that satirical humor actually caused more reaction in the belly than so-called "belly laughs" do. The group broke new ground by using eavesdropping equipment provided by the American CIA to, in effect, "listen in" on the stomach reactions of those who had listened to, and responded to, jokes told by a variety of comedians.

But first, Hal Sorkin of the Baltonmore Consulting Group said that he was leaving consulting work to start a manufacturing company. Sorkin, no relation to the New York Times writer and CNBC host Andrew Ross Sirkin, said that he was tried of sitting on the sidelines while manufacturing jobs in the U.S. declined, and well-paying jobs disappeared at an alarming rate.

"And quite frankly, I got tired of having my friends tell me that I was telling businesses how to restore manufacturing, rather than actually doing it," he told a gathering of economics and business reporters. "They asked me flat out, if I know so much about it, why don't I get out there and do it? So I'm doing it."

Sorkin said he would start out manufacturing ordinary household screws, nuts, washers, and bolts, then move on to precision tools, and eventually to Apple products. He said that his company would pay "top dollar" to workers from the beginning, "at a rate they haven't seen in years in this country, adjusted for the years of inflation we've had."

How will he do it? "It's just not that hard, like I've been saying for years. The workers are there. Pay them, reap the benefits for your company, and help society as well. It sounds very simple, and it is simple. But until other companies see fit to get in on it, I've decided to clean up, so to speak."

Back to the world of humor and its scientific applications, the British panel indicated that it hoped its findings could be used by NASA on future flights. Its report stated that, "You can't allow an astronaut to guffaw on a long, delicate flight. But he (or she) can get by with an inward chuckle or two if he (or she) is careful."


Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Keith Olbermann to Quit TV, Start A Manufacturing Company

In today's headline, a group of humor specialists in England vowed to continue their fight to make satire an Olympic sport.

But first, longtime TV opinion journalist Keith Olbermann announced he was permanently quitting TV to start a manufacturing company in Milwaukee.

"I have been at TV a long time," a subdued Olbermann said to a group of reporters. "I've had a good run at it. But now it is time to do my part to restore the U.S. manufacturing base. And I don't mean just by talking about it. I mean by getting out into the field.

We'll start out by making widgets. Then  we'll move on to more and more complicated products, highly specialized electronic and mechanical gadgetry, Maybe we'll eventually make some craft beers. This is Milwaukee, after all."

Asked what led him into manufacturing, Olbermann responded forcefully, "We used to have a large manufacturing base in this country, with good, high-paying jobs. Then we lost it. Now I am determined to bring it back, even if we have to pollute some. To tell you the truth, I miss Pittsburgh in its smoky days. At least then, our working men had good-paying careers. And now I get to put my money where my mouth is."

Back to the news from England, the scientific humorists hope to have satire in the Olympics by 2016. "This will be a clean, honest sport," the panel said. "No doping."


Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Clay Shaw Biography Update

The Clay Shaw biography moves a few steps closer to completion and publication. I estimate that publication will occur before July 2013. It has been a long process, but it is moving steadily toward the end.

Labels: , ,

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Congressman Jim Cooper Takes Very Controversial Stand

In our news today, a British panel has issued its findings on the role of satire in today's society.

But first, Congressman Jim Cooper (D-TN) has taken perhaps the most controversial stand of his long career. Speaking before a group of reporters in Nashville, Cooper said that he believed that the law of gravity would operate tomorrow as it does today.

"If you roll a pencil off of a desk tomorrow, it will fall to the floor just like it does today," Cooper said.

Asked by John Seigenthaler III, a local reporter, if it was not risky for Cooper to be taking such a stand in advance of release of the findings of a Federally funded group of experts on the subject, expected to be released in two weeks, Cooper responded, "All of my life I have taken controversial stands that were ahead of their time, and I have no intention of stopping now."

Asked by another local reporter, John Seigenthaler IV, if he was ready to sign on to another topic of high interest, whether the sun would continue to rise in the East, Cooper said he needed more time to study the issue.

"Each topic must be decided on a case-by-case basis," he said.

Meanwhile, the panel in Great Britain looking into the effects of satire on modern living reported that most individuals don't recognize satirical statements either when they hear or read them, and therefore tend to take them very seriously, without enjoying the humor in them.