Friday, March 23, 2012

3-23-12: Click Here to Reset the Romney-Bot

Hopefully that headline didn't land this newsletter into your spam box.  We do, however, have a business opportunity that might peak your interest -- that is if you are planning to run for Congress.  Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington released a fancy report detailing the real work going on in the halls of Congress.  We hope you enjoy it as much as we do.  Is your representative a repeat offender?

We do apologize for the spam, but not for the snark.

The Week That Was

Okay, so, Mitt Romney won Illinois by a wide margin.  Well, whoop-dee-doo.  Tell that to the voters down in Louisiana who are heading to the polls tomorrow.  Right now, Santorum is the favorite to win.  No word yet on any special parties feting David TR romneybenderVitter.  (Insert your own joke here).  Romney is now battling the "Etch a Sketch" meme.  Suddenly, Newt, Rick and the internets are coming up with their own clean slate sketches.  Thanks for the laughs, Mittens.

Starting on Monday, Supreme Court justices will begin hearing three days of arguments (temper tantrums) from states, businesses and individuals that are dead set against the Affordable Health Care Act.  Opponents of the law contend that the individual mandate, which is set to go in effect in 2014, is unconstitutional.  The justices will be considering that and whether the remaining parts of the law can be left intact should the mandate be struck down.  When you think about it, taking away health care from 30 million people isn't a bad idea! 

While we're still on health matters, let's talk about the gender cap and how women in many states still pay more for health insurance coverage. (30 percent or more in some cases).  That same dastardly health care law being challenged at the Supreme Court includes provisions to eliminate gender ratings used by insurance companies to determine rates.  The insurance companies readily admit that they use these ratings in states that permit them to.  So the next time your Tea Party friend complains to you about the darned health care industry, just give him or her a shrug and a smile. 

These days, Americans are questioning whether they truly are on the "path to prosperity." Never fear, though -- House Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan has the perfect anecdote for our ills.  Ryan's plan supposedly would eliminate the deficit and balance the budget 28 years from now.  And how, Mr. Ryan, could we achieve these mega-buck savings?  First, get rid of TR ryanbudgetObamaCare; then slash those overburdening taxes on corporations (think Apple); and then, finally, establish a Utopia in which half of America lives under highway overpasses.  Success!

Obama has nominated Dartmouth President Jim Yong Kim to be the next president of the World Bank.  Kim will continue the tradition of an American at the helm, because we are number one in contributions.  No argument there.  While Kim's confirmation is all but certain, we can bet there will be a few fringe petitioners calling for his birth certificate.

Mali.  Government.  Overthrow.  We in America tend to gloss over such stories for the more important things in our lives.  Who are we to argue with our media overlords?  Also, did you know that Obama is spending the weekend at the DMZ? Yes, that one.  The President is scheduled to attend a nuclear security summit in Seoul.

In other overseas news, our Russian friends are sending in "anti-terror troops" to bolster Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.  Well, that pretty much rules out American and NATO intervention, huh?  Here's to another term (or two) for Vladimir Putin.  Finally, we can't say we're surprised by the lack of will to take action, considering the EU is more concerned about shoes and jewelry.

Are You Not Entertained

Everyone is hungry for Hunger Games.  From what we hear, it's the next Harry Potter or Twilight series.  There's an intellectual component to the film, if Forbes is to be trusted.  Big Government is coming for you!  Post-apocalyptic North America be damned.  Some people were lining up six hours prior to the midnight release, so we have a feeling the Games will fare better than Ayn Rand's comedy remake.

Oprah's OWN network laid off 30 workers or one-fifth of its staff.  TR geraldohoodieThe network debuted in January 2011 and has struggled to build viewership and a strong show lineup.  Rosie O'Donnell's short-lived talk show was canceled last week.

Geraldo Rivera couldn't keep his trap shut about the Trayvon Martin.  Thousands marched in New York City and Florida demanding justice for the African-American teenager shot to death by a neighborhood watch captain.  Does this mean that you get a free pass, Geraldo?

A few lucky ducklings and their mom took a tour of the White House grounds yesterday.  The young-ins struggled at first to gain entrance, but were quickly assisted by the Secret Service.  Cute. 

Interweb Tomfoolery

It's Friday.  Beyond the awesome weather, what better way to celebrate the beginning of the weekend than with a nice drink and a burrito from down the street?  Yum!  We love Chipotle, but because we are geeks, we are also impressed by the food chain's social media utilization.  How has Chipotle been so successful?  First, their social media team is hard at work across multiple platforms (Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare and YouTube) building significant brand loyalty.  Secondly, Chipotle's online operation has one of the best response rates to customers' questions and concerns.  By frequently interacting with customers, Chitoptle has managed to grow sales at an impressive rate.  Always remember, it is important to make a personal connection with your audience, whether online or offline.

Have you ever felt overwhelmed with all these new social media tools?  Even if you consider yourself to be a social media expert, you might feel a bit dizzy for missing the debut of the latest and greatest in the social media world.  Don't stress yourself out!  The real secret to social media is creating a strategy that works for you, with the right tools.  Here are some quick tips on how to improve your social media strategy with Pinterest, Facebook, and Google+.

Out on the Town

There's nothing better than warm weather and cherry blossoms.  Be sure to stand to the right on the escalators.
  • Find out what's going on during the Festival on the official website.     

Surprise!  There are no primary contests scheduled for next week.  Fortunately for the pundits, the Supreme Court health care law arguments will easily fill their wall-to-wall coverage.  Fun, fun, fun!

See you next week,


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