Warm Southern Breeze

"… there is no such thing as nothing."

We promised to pay your retirement pension, but now, we won’t. Sosumi… you bastards!

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, March 11, 2010

For those “in the know,” “Sosumi” is the name of a computer sound which Apple Computer of Cupertino, CA created and has used for quite some time.

I love Apple Computer, well, not genuinely “love,” but have always believed them to be the best – bar none – computer operating system, superior in every way to Microsoft’s Windows OS. Folks used to say, “Oh, the Mac is good for graphics,” and other such nonsense, even when the Mac OS was in v7.x.

Today, I ask folks, “What’s the Internet all about?” Graphics, graphics, graphics, and media, media, media.

And still, some folks continue to use the infection-prone Windows. Oh well. Some folks never learn.

On to Sosumi.

If you’ve ever heard of the “Beatles,” (and who hasn’t?) you should be aware that the company which oversaw their operations was called Apple. Well, you can imagine the court fights and protracted legal battles that the music company had with the computer company.

As a type of ‘slap in the face,’ Apple Computer folks created the “Sosumi” sound – which, if pronounced properly, sounds like “so, sue me.”

Sosumi is applicable to Prichard, a small town in Mobile county, Alabama. Mobile county is situated in the Mobile Bay on the Gulf of Mexico, and was where the very first Mardi Gras festival originated. As you might imagine, the City of Mobile is the Mobile County seat.

Recent news from our southern sister county details woes of the City of Prichard and their failure to pay pensioners for well over six months. After not receiving promised pension payments, pensioners sued the City of Prichard to be paid. U.S. Federal Bankruptcy Judge William Shulman ruled Tuesday that pensions do not qualify as “administrative obligations” for the city, and therefore do not have to be paid as other expenses.

Judge Shulman has ruled, however, that the City of Prichard must pay their bills and current employees to function.

The pensioners have a pending civil suit against the City of Prichard.

What is essentially disturbing about this and other similar cases is that it illustrates a myopic vision of governance which has emerged.

Short-term profit, rather than long-term gain has been the byword of American Big Business and other greed-driven enterprises.

Once, catch-phrases such as “save for a rainy day,” “a penny saved is a penny earned,” and more, all reminded us of our obligations. And those axioms which trended toward not only fiscal accountability, but solvency and the benefit of others – all with a long-term view. Now, with rules governing fiscal behavior all but effectively eliminated, we the people are suffering.

“Greed,” some say, “drives the market.” And while there may be an element of truth to such comment, eventually the “chickens come home to roost,” and rules are created to establish or reestablish trust and provide fairness in transactions.

We have obligations to each other.

As the poet, lawyer and cleric John Donne wrote in 1623 in Meditation XVII, “no man is an island.”

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