Monday, November 24, 2014

The Ferguson Grand Jury Verdict Is In...

The verdict is in. The results we be announced momentarily. Weigh in here.

Question: What do you think about the verdict?

Make money online with the best binary options sites

Binary Options are becoming more and more popular, due to the fact that most brokers are now regulated. Binary Options are a simple way to make money online and is in many ways similar to online poker.

You don’t have to be a stock market analyst or any financial expert to get into binary options.

What are binary options?

There are many ways to trade currencies online. One of these is through binary options. Binary options are a type of exotic trading instrument that is offered by exchanges around the world.

The trading is done on the internet through a dedicated website portal called broker. There are many sites that compare the best binary options brokers, like the one maintained by Matteka Anderson. This way you can read real reviews before depositing your money.

A binary option is a speculative trading instrument. It is presented in a simple yes or no question by a broker online. For example, a binary option can be presented as “Will the price of gold be above $1, 500 at 2.00pm?” this is an option that you can buy or sell.

As such, it has a bid price which is its selling price and an ask price which is its buying price. Binary options are good trading instruments where you can win or lose depending on the market conditions.

Characteristics of binary options

Binary options are great because they are simple to trade. These options are similar to online poker. You can deposit money and win or lose it. For example depositing and withdrawing works the same way, many companies that are active in the online poker industry also joined the binary options industry. Especially for online poker players, who are familiar with odds and probability, it is very easy to get into binary options.

Moreover, the binary options trading market is a zero sum game. This means that when you are winning, there is someone else losing by exactly the same margin.

However, if you buy the option at the ask price of $44.50, you risk this exact amount if the option expires at $0. Therefore, chances at the option even out for both traders. Binary options take many forms. They can be questions about stock markets, oil price fluctuations, prices of trading commodities and more. Each option is also known as a contract. You can buy more than one of these contracts if you really believe in your trading position. Of course, there is more risk in doing this but there is also more reward.

Advantages of trading binary options

One of the biggest advantages of trading binary options is that you can trade many different types of investment assets across various industries and markets at the same time. Most binary options brokers are now regulated by CySec.

As such, for a smart trader, the returns can be huge in a short period of time. Another benefit of trading binary options is that you have a chance to invest a low amount of money in the options. As such, you can risk only as much as you can afford. As long as you have a capital base of $100, you can get in on any option or contract in the market.

Each and every option gives you information about the amount you can win or lose prior to your investing in the option. This information is presented in the option’s bid and ask prices. Therefore, you can make an informed decision before investing in an option. Most other financial trading instruments do not have this option. With binary options it is possible to know when your trade will expire.

This is because each option has an expiry time period. Some of the options expire in 15 minutes and others in a week. Thus, you can get your money in a short time as opposed to other financial trading instruments that take months for you to get your returns. Binary options are an awesome way to invest money over the internet.

If you are still unsure, you can always try a demo account, where you don’t have to invest real money. This way you can see if this is something you want to invest in or not.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

White Daughters & Black Boyfriends: A Father's Worst Nightmare?!?

I would blame this one on Obama, but well, that excuse is getting a little played out...
Students at Booker T. Washington High School in Norfolk, Virginia walked out of class on Monday to protest a school official’s Twitter message that referred to young black men as a “nightmare” for white fathers.

According to WVEC, the Twitter post was made in June by the school administrator, but students only recently noticed it.

The tweet was a reposting of a message from an account called @OrNahhTweets. It showed a photograph of seven white girls in prom-style dresses with seven African-American young men in tuxedos. The caption on the photo read, “every white girl’s father’s worst nightmare or not.”

Over a dozen African-American students walked out of classes with protest signs on Monday after they said that school officials and the school board refused to respond to their complaints.

“This was the only actual way we could get someone’s attention, was to walk outside. It shouldn’t have come to this, but [the administrator has] avoided all meetings and public speakings and emails, just avoided them all,” student Michael Lemelle told WVEC. The students said that they didn’t want the school administrator fired, they just want officials to know how hurtful the tweet was.

“Me being a young African-American, I don’t think of myself as anyone’s worst nightmare,” Lemelle explained
Here's the video.

Every black male has and example of encountering such racism during their teenage years. I remember sitting at a table in my high school library with two other black male classmates and a white girl working on a class project. The librarian, an old white man, walked over, grabbed the girl's arm, and told her "you don't need to be around them". Mind you, we were working on a project for class, because we were all assigned to the same group. We weren't trying to gangb*ng the girl, we just wanted to get an A on the project.

I told my parents when I got home and they hit the roof. They met with the principal the next day, told him what happened, and the librarian (who apparently had a history of this sort of thing) was suspended indefinitely without pay. He "retired" at the end of the year.

My point being: this sh*t happens all the damn time to black males. It just happens to be more out in the open in the age of social media, but it is nothing new.

As a Dad of three, my worst nightmare is my kids being taught by an a$$hole like this.

Question: Do you have such an example of racism from your high school days?

Monday, November 17, 2014

The Day Darren Wilson Walked...

There's a great chance that today, a day when 20 degree temperatures and snow are forecast for the Greater St. Louis Area, will be the day that the Darren Wilson grand jury decision is announced. I'm not saying that the timing is intentional, and being done in a manner least likely to lead to civil unrest, but well, that's just me being a paranoid conspiracy theorist. As usual.

I'm only about 99.9% sure that Wilson is going to walk, and I'm somewhat shocked that there are still people who think otherwise. The cops have been leaking "details" for months now that have all but poisoned the well for potential jurors in an effort to make it clear that Brown got what he had coming. Never mind recent video surveillance that showed Wilson had hardly a scratch on his face a couple of hours after the shooting, which contradicts his claims that Mike Brown was beating him senseless. Nope, all that matters is that that Brown had it coming and got what he deserved.

St Louis County has stocked up on extra riot gear just because, and Ferguson residents have been buying guns at a startling rate in anticipation of what Negroes will do once the decision goes public.

When I think about this story, one thing just really, really sticks out to me: the Ferguson police department's utter incompetence throughout the entire ordeal, and how it's likely emblematic of what residents in that city experience on a daily basis. From the misplaced cruiser cams, to Wilson (allegedly) turning his radio off during the (alleged) scuffle, to the horrible optics of how information about the case was trickled out.

Think about this: had the police immediately said that Brown was a suspect in a strong-armed robbery, instead of leaking that small detail a week after the fact, would people have maybe seen this story in a different light from the very beginning? Had they given the family the common decency of not letting their child's body lay in the street for 4 hours, might tempers have not flared nearly as much? Had they treated (understandably) agitated citizens who are merely looking for answers with a bit of respect instead of confronting them with military grade weaponry, might tensions have been diffused a bit? Again, the level of rank incompetence is astounding.

Now put yourself in a community in which that rank incompetence is displayed on a daily basis. Live with, deal with, accept said rank incompetence on a daily basis for your entire life. And ask yourself how you might have responded when said rank incompetence resulted in the death of an 18 year old.

Say a prayer for Ferguson. I have a bad feeling that city (as a whole) is gonna need all it can get in the next few days.

Question: What do you expect the grand jury decision to be? Will there be rioting? BTW, should the verdict be announced today, this will be the open mic. I probably won't be writing anything more about this.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Ashy Or Classy?!? Fat Joe Leans Back Into A Pyramid Scheme.

I believe the operative term is "multilevel marketing", but seriously, it's the same sh*t. Any business in which you have to recruit others under you to prosper is a damn pyramid. No matter what "business services" they might be peddling. I can't really hate on Fat Joe for this though. Rap doesn't come with a 401k Plan. Big Pun been dead. There will not be Lean Back Part II. So yeah, do whatever you gotta do to avoid becoming Joey Crack again. This is semi-Ashy tho.

Question: Ashy Or Classy? Would you sign up for Fat Joe's Invisible Train? Have you ever been suckered into a MLM scheme?

Thursday, November 6, 2014

The Day The GOP "Got It's Country Back".

For the first time in my adult life, I didn't vote on Tuesday. It wasn't because I didn't want to, it was because a last minute Day Job-related travel requirement forced me to. I didn't really feel all that guilty about this, since I live in a blue state where elections are but a mere formality. Well, we all know how that turned out, don't we Anthony Brown?

Brown, for this unaware, was to proceed the outgoing Democratic Governor and skate to a win, which would have made him just the 3rd black man ever elected Governor of any of the 50 United States. Yet despite having a 2-1 edge in Democratic registrations, rallies with the Clintons and Obamas, and a sh*tload of money, Brown got trounced by a GOP competitor that most Marylanders couldn't pick out of a police lineup. It was shocking, yet if you look at national results, it really shouldn't have been.

The GOP, in short, kicked the Democrats a$$ses and retook the Senate, which coupled with their stranglehold on the Congress leaves them a mere Presidency away from taking back their country. The folks over at Fox News were so giddy the other night, I'm about 90% certain that someone on that network got impregnated that night. Don't abort that fetus, Karl Rove! #ProLife

[Somewhat Related Sidebar: The GOP has been whining and complaining about "getting their country back" since 2008. Has anyone actually thought about what that might look like, should they recapture the White House in 2016? I've come to associate them so much with whining, Obama hatred, a$$holery, conspiracy theories, racism, sexist, ism-ism, incompetence, obstruction, and victimhood for so long that I forgot what having them in power looked like. A GOP-run government in the age of Twitter might be mildly amusing, if it didn't have such frightening real world implications. Fox News would certainly have to change their entire steez. MSNBC/CNN would prolly just fold. So might this blog.]

Anyways, the President predictably gave a somber post-election speech yesterday, which is something we should be used to by now.

That, my friends, is the sound of a defeated man. A man who probably misplayed the first couple of years of his Presidency and as a result has been the world's most well paid lame duck for the past 4 years. The epilogue of his 2 terms has yet to be written, but I'm pretty sure it's going to include the words "potential" and "disappointment" more times than a Robert Griffin III scouting report. With that in mind, I'm also certain the President is going to try and get something, anything done over the next 2 years because he wants to remembered as something for other than being "The First Black President". At this rate, I'm not even sure he's gonna get the usual "streets and schools in black neighborhoods" that most black people of acclaim do. It's been an all around clusterf*ck. No two ways around that, no excuses.

So yeah, expect him to agree with the GOP on some very controversial items in the name of "cooperation", "just getting something done", "legacy building", and "because I'm just tired of not doing sh*t for the past 4 years". Mostly the latter. And yeah, you'll probably find yourself very "disappointed". Repeatedly.

Question: What's Obama going to do for the next 2 years.

T-Pain Singing Without Autotune Is Awesome. And Sad.

[Editor's Note: I'm giving the thinkpiece treatment to a web video about a has-been singer. Yeah, it's that kinda day. You thought I'd be talking about the election results?]

Yeah, I realize I'm a few days late with this one. Whatever, I've been working. It happens. In any event, the Internets were going Nuts earlier this week when a video of T-Pain doing an edition of NPR Music Tiny Desk Concert made the rounds. Most of the comments expressed amazement that Teddy Pinned Her A$$ Down could actually carry a tune without the assistance of a computer. And after having watched this myself, I found it enjoyable, and sad at the same time.

I'm not exactly shocked that T-Pain can carry a tune. The guy is naturally talented. He can rap better than 75% of the numbskulls on the radio right now, can write songs, is funny, and probably would have made the transition to TV/acting if he had a more foreward looking manager. Well, that, and Jay-Z's "Death Of Autotune", a mostly pointless and forgettable song that somehow convinced people that T-Pain was lame and essentially stalled his career.

I guess the more surprising thing here is that people thought T-Pain couldn't sing. I mean, come on, seriously? What's the likelihood that a husky darkskinned guy from Tallahassee would get put on if he couldn't sing in the first place? Making it as an R&B singer today requires some level of talent after all. What's sad is that the industry's so screwed up that an otherwise talented person had to resort to using a gimmick to be relevant. In a different era, T-Pain woulda been Jeffrey Osborne or Peabo Bryson, and might not be reduced to singing songs about bartenders and a$$es to get airplay. But alas, this is not such an era. R&B sucks, "urban radio" is unlistenable, and I've got Little Dragon in my headphones a whole lot of late.

Here's to hoping T-Pain using his newfound (fleeting?) notoriety to get his career back on track.

Eff' an autotune.

Question: Were you shocked that T-Pain could actually sing.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014 Wednesday Open Mic.

I'm on the road this week, in the great state of Missouri. No, not Ferguson (as if), just somewhere else.

Busy week here. Ya'll talk amongst yourselves. I'll be back soon.

I'm sure you wanna discuss the election results. Have at it.

Question: What's on your mind today? Drop some links, start a convo.

The Crazy World of HR – Taming the Data.

Working in HR is strange. People can’t decide whether they love or hate you.

When there is serious illness in the family or a bereavement the help and support provided by HR is appreciated. You get a warm welcome.

The moment you implement and push through changes to working conditions you are the worst person on earth. It’s then people start referring to the HR department as Human Remains rather than Human Resources. Not as funny as it sounds if you are on the receiving end and have had a tough week and I’ve had a few of them lately.

Right now, our firm is growing at an amazing rate. It seems like every time I clock in there is some new skinny, spotty new kid in a freshly ironed shirt and a new suit waiting for induction. Surprises even me how many there are, and the chances are I hired them.
When it came to new staff, things were really getting out of control. We could not keep track of them all. People were not being paid and our training files were not in good order either. If one of the new people had had an accident, we would have been hard pressed to prove that they had undergone the right training.

Part of the problem was our ancient HR system. It had kind of evolved over the years, which meant that we had the data on each employee spread across several different systems.

For years, it worked OK. When there were not so many people in the company and less turnover. It also worked because our HR clerks had been with us from the beginning. They knew the wrinkles of the system. The problems really started when one of them went on maternity and we hired a temp. She just not get her head around our sprawling system and things were missed and lost.

Our ancient HR systems stopped us from being able hire a third party accountant to do our payroll. Our old HR software was so far out of date we could not convert the database into a format the accountant could use. In short, it was a mess.

Fortunately, we found an answer we are now using HR Systems from CIPHR. Everything is in the same place and everyone, who needs to, can access the information. The whole system is much more efficient. The training module is also helping us to train our staff faster. It is far less labour intensive.

Even the technophobes managed to get their heads around the system within a week. It took a few weeks to go back over the temps work and put everything right on the system that had been missed, but apart from that, the transition was easy.

No more new recruits coming to the HR office on Friday night wondering if they have been let go because their wages had not been paid. Now the pressure is off I will be back writing more.

...and the morale of the story is... don’t stand still, update your systems regularly. The improved efficiencies are worth the investment.

Now if this whole post sounds like me subtly justifying my replacing my iPhone 5 with a got me.