The Jake Files

March 31, 2006

Job Search Update

Filed under: Conservative,Economy & Business,Job Loss,Unemployment,Work — Amazing Jake @ 2:49 pm

Blogging has been light  non-existent over the past week due to my job search.  There's been a lot of potential tpoics to discuss, from the French riots (I really missed out on that one) to the illegal immigration demonstrations.  I'd like to take a break now and then to write about that, but looking for a job is a full-time job.

Since my job was eliminated last Monday, I've had 5 interviews for positions ranging from call center middle management (my background) to individual sales rep positions, and made a lot of networking contacts.  I've also done some exploration of self-employment options, and did a short contract writing job.  I've been through this layoff thing before, so I'm pretty regimented about my search. 

So on that note, back to the grind.  If only those French protesters would be as focused on finding and keeping a job as they are on protesting, there wouldn't be a need to protest over job security.


March 24, 2006

Under Construction

Filed under: General — Amazing Jake @ 12:39 am

I’m playing around with a new template, so the appearance may be a bit sketchy for a day or two.

March 23, 2006

I Am Not a Victim

Filed under: Conservative,Economy & Business,Job Loss,Unemployment,Work — Amazing Jake @ 10:44 pm

So you may have noticed the lack of blogging lately.  First, I wanted to take a few days off after the election, which I did.  Second, part of that time off was spent in Pinetop, where it snowed after the major drought we had in Arizona that made all the news.  We took the mini-Jakes to play in the snow, and it was great.  If there was ever an omen that we we should have signed on to the Kyoto Protocols, 13 inches of snow in Pinetop AZ and snow on the Superstition Mountains visible from Phoenix is all the evidence we need.

Third, my job was eliminated and I was laid off on Monday.  Hence, the lack of blogging due to a laser beam focus on finding a new job. (more…)

March 15, 2006

Dunn, Caccamo Re-elected; Runoff Set for May

Mayor Dunn has been re-elected, as has Councilmember Bob Caccamo.  Congratulations to both, and regrets to Frank Peake and Rick Heumann after their elimination from the runoff.

The remaining council candidates will square off in the May runoff.

Incumbent City Councilman Bob Caccamo won his re-election bid in Chandler’s seven-way council race Tuesday. Four candidates, Trinity Donovan, Becky Jackson, Chris Stage and Jeff Weninger, will square off in a May runoff for the remaining two seats.


Candidates Frank Peake and Rick Heumann were eliminated in Tuesday’s primary election.

Donovan, 28, an executive with Valley of the Sun United Way, led the runoff pack in votes counted Tuesday.

Amazing Jake will be taking a break from election coverage to allow the dust to settle before further prognostications.  I will, however offer this. 

Traffic on this blog increased substantially over the past few days.  While we are by no means a Powerline or Instapundit, we are the only blog out there posting opinion on these local races, and as such, have had some interest from those seeking information about the candidates and their opinions. 

I suspect that the runoff will get even more contentious now that the Mayoral race has been established.  The Dunn/Caccamo/Huggins voting bloc remains intact, while the Westbrooks/Orlando/Sepulveda/Wallace bloc will now be down to just Orlando and Sepulveda.  That will make the next couple of months interesting as candidates curry favor with various interest groups.

My advice to candidates?  Make your positions known publicly.  Don’t make people guess where you stand on the issues.  Make it easy for people to understand your priorities and convictions by putting all your information on a website.  Name recognition is good for getting votes from the sheep lazy less informed, but people who are truly interested expect more than big pretty signs.

Africa Splits Apart; New Ocean Forming

Filed under: Environmentalism,Environmentalist Whackos,General — Amazing Jake @ 7:58 am

This is obviously George Bush’s fault for failing to ratify the Kyoto treaty.  Who knew that global warming had such implications?

March 13, 2006

Final Update on Chandler AZ City Council and Mayoral Election

Tomorrow is election day – don’t forget to vote!

If you haven’t heard, there are new voter ID requirements at the polls, so be prepared.

I’ve enjoyed putting together all the information on the city council elections over the past few weeks, since, after all, no one else was doing it.  If you’ve enjoyed what you’ve read here, bookmark the site and continue to visit.  Once the election is over (assuming there’s no runoff), I’ll be posting more frequently on other topics – such as national politics, foreign policy, entertainment and TV, and of course, French-bashing at every opportunity! 

To get a summary of all the council-related posts, click on “Elections” in the “Categories” sidebar to the right.  Enjoy!

To all the candidates in tomorrow’s elections, good luck!

March 11, 2006

CIA Cover Blown by Chicago Tribune (Not Valerie Plame’s)

Filed under: General,War on Terror — Amazing Jake @ 2:03 pm

This is really disturbing on a number of levels.

When the Tribune searched a commercial online data service, the result was a virtual directory of more than 2,600 CIA employees, 50 internal agency telephone numbers and the locations of some two dozen secret CIA facilities around the United States.

Only recently has the CIA recognized that in the Internet age its traditional system of providing cover for clandestine employees working overseas is fraught with holes, a discovery that is said to have “horrified” CIA Director Porter Goss.

“Cover is a complex issue that is more complex in the Internet age,” said the CIA’s chief spokeswoman, Jennifer Dyck. “There are things that worked previously that no longer work. Director Goss is committed to modernizing the way the agency does cover in order to protect our officers who are doing dangerous work.”

Dyck declined to detail the remedies “since we don’t want the bad guys to know what we’re fixing.”

I think we all understand that undercover CIA work is not typically what you see in Alias and James Bond movies, but do we really need to make it easy for the bad guys?  If a newspaper can do this, so can terrorists or foreign intelligence services.

I wonder if we’ll see the same level of outrage over this disclosure as we saw with Valerie Plame?

Cubicle Inventor Decries Own Invention; Dilberts Everywhere Agree

Filed under: Economy & Business,General,Work — Amazing Jake @ 1:32 pm

 From Fortune:

Propst is the father of the cubicle. More than 30 years after he unleashed it on the world, we are still trying to get out of the box. The cubicle has been called many things in its long and terrible reign. But what it has lacked in beauty and amenity, it has made up for in crabgrass-like persistence. (snip)

But inventions seldom obey the creator’s intent. “The Action Office wasn’t conceived to cram a lot of people into little space,” says Joe Schwartz, Herman Miller’s former marketing chief, who helped launch the system in 1968. “It was driven that way by economics.”

Economics was the one thing Propst had failed to take into account. But it was also what triggered the cubicle’s runaway success. Around the time the Action Office was born, a growing breed of white-collar workers, whose job titles fell between secretary and boss, was swelling the workforce. Also, real estate prices were rising, as was the cost of reconfiguring office buildings, making the physical office a drag on the corporate budget. Cubicles, or “systems furniture,” as they are euphemistically called, offered a cheaper alternative for redoing the floorplan.

As a cubicle dweller, and manager of cubicle dwellers, I’ve seen bad ones and “less bad” ones.  I’ve never seen one that was particularly inviting.


Natural Causes too good for Milosevic

Filed under: General — Amazing Jake @ 12:24 pm

Slobodan Milocevic has died in his prison cell, after being on trial in the Hague for 4 years.  I have a feeling that, even though his trial seems to be proceeding as slowly as Milocevic’s, the Iraqis will make sure Saddam gets a firing squad before the sands of time take their toll on him.

Military Robo-dog in development

Filed under: General,Middle East,Military,War on Terror — Amazing Jake @ 12:10 pm

This is pretty cool.

Meet BigDog, a mechanical mutt that does more than snare Frisbees and irrigate fire hydrants. It totes hundreds of pounds of gear so soldiers won’t have to, and it will never spook under fire. Developed by Boston Dynamics with funding from the U.S. military, the BigDog prototype is arguably the world’s most ambitious legged robot. Its stability and awareness of its own orientation make it the first robot that can handle the unknown challenges of the battlefield. The Great Dane–size ’bot can trot more than three miles an hour, climb inclines of up to 45 degrees, and carry up to 120 pounds—even in rough terrain impenetrable to wheeled or tracked vehicles. But this one is just a puppy; Boston Dynamics expects the next iteration, ready this summer, to be at least twice as fast and carry more than twice as much.

Click the link in the article to see video of the robo-dog in action.  Maybe they can mount a chain gun on the front and have it root out terrorists in the caves of Afghanistan.  Let’s just hope that Skynet doesn’t get a hold of it.

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