Saturday, February 28, 2009
This picture was taken yesterday in downtown Hemet California, we're told. Not all the background details of this photo are known at this time but this fellow appears to be very proud of the fact that he's a Scientologist and doing his darnedest to get the word out. It reminds us of some of PETA's demonstrations, where naked women are put on display locked up in cages. You definitely have to respect someone that dedicates his life so much to a religion, no matter how cooky it may appear on the surface. I know it won't be easy for many of you to accept the lifestyles of the Scientologists, but they're people too just like everyone else, and we share many of the same moral systems and cultural upbringings. If we can break down the barriers that separates us, we can work towards opening up a dialogue that leads to mutual respect and cultural harmony.
Xbox Live: the multiplayer gaming service that brings hours of endless fun to people all over the world. Unless you're gay. A gamer named Theresa found that out the hard way when she was banned from Xbox live after she identified herself as a lesbian in her profile.
As she reports to the consumerist, she "was harassed by several players, 'chased' to different maps/games to get away from their harassment. They followed me into the games and told all the other players to turn me in because they didn't want to see that crap or their kids to see that crap."
It appears that a group of homophobes checked out her profile and saw that she was a lesbian. Fearing that their kids may catch the gay while just trying to have some good wholesome clean fun on Xbox Live, a group of parents started harassing Theresa in an attempt to run her off. When Microsoft got wind of this they banned Theresa, saying her sexuality was offensive to other gamers.
There's either more to this story or Microsoft's actions are completely uncalled for and inexcusable. If you have any group of people, whoever they are and whatever the reason, stalking and harassing people and following them all around in a game, they are the ones causing the disturbance. Not the one just trying to play the game. Now, who knows, maybe she was going around running her mouth telling everyone how great being a lesbian is and how everyone should try it. Right now we simply don't have all the details, but it's pretty safe to say that Xbox Live is definitely not something the gay community will be able to get behind any longer.
Edit: This just in: Microsoft has issued a response. It is their policy to forbid all people to state their sexual orientation, whatever it happens to be. I have to say that's a fair a policy, and it's the best way to avoid situations like this from happening in the future. No innocence is lost and nobody gets harassed.
Just for the record, People Liking People doesn't take a stance on sexual orientation. We like all people, whether they're straight, gay, or homophobic.
Ryanair Airline, the low cost airline based in Dublin, is reportedly considering charging customers $1.40 to use the restroom on its flights.
They're going to need the extra money to hire someone just to mop up all the piss and shit off the floor after each flight.
Tay Zonday? That guy's still around trying to make a buck? Alright you can't blame a guy for trying to squeeze out every ounce of coin from his fame, I'd do the same. I guess what's more shocking is that companies are still paying him money to promote their brand as if he were a legitimate pop icon with the power to persuade the masses. And talk about a confused message. What the hell does Tay Zonday have to do with doing your taxes?
So I click on the ad and it takes me to a music video of Tay Zonday singing about Turbotax in a song called "Freeloader Nation". Oh apparently there is some sort of contest...something about rapping about how great Turbotax is and wait a minute, what the fuck is that Vanilla Ice? Oh God.
If Tay Zonday and Vanilla Ice together don't spell PR disaster, I don't know what will. Whoever thought up this idea should be canned immediately. And poor Vanilla Ice, how degrading. Look at this silly hat they made him wear:
What follows is the winning video by some guy calling himself cpulfer, and a phone call made to him by Vanilla Ice himself letting him know he had won. The prize was $25,000. I wonder how much they paid Ice, Tay, and Youtube. This is just sad all around.
By the way, most people don't even need to bother with these tax programs. You can easily file online through the IRS's website. They offer a service called Free File Fillable Forms where you can fill out the necessary forms yourself online and submit them for free.
Friday, February 27, 2009
Meet Jeff Stone, the County Supervisor of Riverside County in California. Many of you are probably wondering why we should care about him and how is he so likable that he gets his own Person of the Day. Well Jeff Stone isn't just your ordinary county supervisor. He goes above and beyond his call of duty and the way he serves his county is unparalleled. He's one of those admirable people where the more you know about him, the more you feel like he's the older brother you never had. How did this man rise to a position of such great power? He learned from experiences along the way and kept himself humble by the people he surrounded himself with. He's known as County Supervisor today, but what a lot of people don't know is he had a very successful pharmacy career that would become the building blocks to where he is today. Sit back and relax, and just take in a wonderful story about a man living the American Dream.
Jeff Stone grew up in the diverse city of Anaheim where he was introduced to many different cultures and all walks of life. Even as just a wee toddler, he was developing an appreciation for people that would serve as a backbone for the ethics and integrity he has today which act as a moral compass to the very difficult decisions he has to make on a daily basis. He lived a very modest upbringing. He saw that the way to success was an honest living and that was only achieved by hard work.
Jeff's early adulthood would be very rewarding but come with enormous challenges. In 1983 Jeff saw an opportunity. There were thousands of people living in the city of Temecula, yet when people there needed to get their medications they had to drive out for miles to the nearest pharmacy. Jeff opened up his own pharmacy which he named "Temecula Pharmacy" and made a killing in profits. For a while everything was going just fine for Jeff. There were some bumps along the way, which became excellent learning opportunities. Jeff was and still is a student of life and always takes the time to look at every situation as a tool to better himself. The California state Board of Pharmacy were major crybabies and were always looking for every little violation that Jeff Stone did. At one point there 20 accusations lodged against him by the Board of Pharmacy. Fortunately he was able to get 16 of them dismissed by using good persuasion tactics, and most people don't even know about the 4 that actually stuck. Long story short, he admitted to committing four improper business practices. They were probably for very silly things to begin with like not giving patients the right medication. You know how those Pharmacy Boards can be. But Jeff took the challenges head on without fear, because he understands that life is full of challenges and if you don't meet them head on you'll get run over. That's definitely up there with our top 10 admirable traits.
One day a woman named Sharon Di Meglio went to Jeff Stone's pharmacy to get her prescription for 7.5mcg of Liothyronine filled. What happened next created a stir that would be Jeff's second real test as a pharmacist, and most importantly, a human being. Instead of Ms. Di Meglio getting 7.5mcg of her medication from Jeff's pharmacy, what she received instead was a lethal dose that gave her permanent brain damage. When you're in business as a pharmacist, you obviously can't always spend all your time checking the dosages because checking to see how you're money is doing in the stock market takes up a lot of your time. Besides, that's what pharmacy techs are for. Jeff definitely knew the importance of delegating tasks.
So here you have a man of great integrity and character, and he's having the challenge of his life to deal with this potential PR disaster the best he can. What he did next was very genius, and anyone in a tough public relations situation can learn from this: he used to run and hide approach. The media was calling his phone off the hook, both to his personal phone and to his pharmacy. Did he take the bait and answer the calls? Did he confess to giving the patient a lethal dose? Of course not; he'd be an idiot to do that. A lot of money is at stake here - remember he was the owner of the pharmacy and any hit that pharmacy takes is a direct hit to his own pocketbook. At a time of crisis, Jeff did exactly what he needed to do, and he did it with the calmness of a patient sedated with Demerol.
Fast forward to today. Our pharmacy boy is all grown up now and is the Riverside County Supervisor. You're probably starting to understand a little about why this great man is worthy of his own day. We'll leave you with this for now and will get to more of his triumphs and tribulations in the coming days. There's definitely a lot to admire in this great man, and we can learn a lot from his character and determination.
Youtube just introduced a new feature: Youtube entertainers will now be able to offer their videos for download at a small price. The ones we've seen were 99 cents. This is great news to a lot of people who always wanted to keep a copy for themselves. But a lot of people out there were using third party services such as Keepvid, Ripzor.com, Vixy.net, Ripmyvideos.com, VideoDownloader, Ripvideo.net, Savevideodownload.com, and Kickyoutube.com to download videos from Youtube for free.
Well this is now a thing of the past. Youtube has just disabled downloading videos, even for those using those sneaky programs and plugins. Try using Keepvid to download your favorite Youtube video. It won't work. You'll save a file that's completely empty. If you want to download a Youtube video you'll have to find one that has a download link.
So is this a good decision or not? Well it's obviously good for people who want to protect and control their own content, which most producers of content do. But there are a lot of others out there who want their videos to be distributed around, like activists trying to get the word out about a particular cause. Or people working together collaborating, sharing their videos, and editing them. Also, if someone is trying to illustrate a point, it's helpful sometimes to display several small clips to support their argument. Youtube is full of news and commentary clips. We understand that people who work hard to create content shouldn't have it stolen, but there are a lot of good legitimate reasons for people wanting their own copy.
With Youtube's new feature of offering the video to download, I've only seen examples where it's being sold. Will Youtube also allow people to have their videos available to download for free? We hope so, and if not, we hope they're seriously considering it.
From the people at Wallypop who think this is such a fabulous idea:
Suuuuuure you just keep on telling yourselves that it doesn't smell like a big nasty wet juicy turd in your whole house. How the fuck are you going to have a bunch of rags piled up with shit all over them, and then try to tell me that's not going to smell? It's just gross period. You have a box of shit covered rags just sitting around. Then you have to carry the shit rags to the washer and drier. Then you have to take them out by hand and put them in your wash. It's just way too much time focused on smelly shit. That's why people use regular toilet paper. Once you flush it, you can just forget the whole thing happened and continue on with your day. With the shit rags, it's a constant reminder of how dirty, smelly, and gross you are.
"Using cloth toilet wipes actually has many advantages. For one, it's a lot more comfortable and soft on your most delicate body parts. It's also more economical, uses less paper, and saves you those late-night trips to the store. And cloth wipes can be used wet without any of the sopping disintegration that regular toilet paper is prone to. For a discussion of the practical aspects of using cloth toilet wipes, please check out our page detailing How to Use Cloth Wipes.
Lately, with all the media attention, there've been a lot of naysayers talking about the stench. I can honestly say, our wipes don't stink. They don't go into a sealed container. They go into a little (lidded) garbage can in the bathroom. Many people use a wet bag, as pictured below. There is no odor.
So where did it all begin? Firefighting goes all the way back to Ancient Egypt. Of course even before then fires existed which needed to be put out, but it took a while for people to be designated as professional fire fighters. Before Ancient Egypt, people were left to their own devices, and often did the wrong things to try to put fires out which actually made it worse. Deadly burns were very common back then, as it wasn't unusual for someone to try to put out a grease fire with water. What really kickstarted the firefighter movement was Augustus of Rome. Even though firefighters were around, they were working for private companies. If someone's house was burning down, the fire fighters would only come help if the owner was a paying customer. It was more like a business back then. Augustus called this absurd, as this meant the poor would never have any help putting out fires because they didn't have the money to pay private fire fighting companies. He then created a state funded firefighting squad that covered everyone. These firefighters, which were called Vigiles at the time, were trained, paid, and equipped by the state.
A lot of things have changed since those days, but one thing remains: the people who hold these jobs take the firefighter's oath to put out fire to the best of their ability, and they put their lives on the line every day for a cause much bigger than themselves.
I promise concern for others. A willingness to help all those in need.
I promise courage - courage to face and conquer my fears. Courage to share and endure the ordeal of those who need me.
I promise strength - strength of heart to bear whatever burdens might be placed upon me. Strength of body to deliver to safety all those placed within my care.
I promise the wisdom to lead, the compassion to comfort, and the love to serve unselfishly whenever I am called.
How often do you worry about getting killed in a fire and losing all your belongings? Probably not often. That's because with firefighters around, we feel safe, comfortable, and confident knowing that if disaster ever struck, there would be people much braver than ourselves to take care of it. And what's not to like about that?
Today's people of the day are collection agency representatives. You'd be hard pressed to find someone that likes bill collectors, but that's just because people don't understand the important role that these people play in the economy. If you've ever ran up a couple thousand dollars on a credit card and then failed to pay your bill promptly, you've likely been called several times by a debt collector. Typically if a customer is just a little late on a payment, they will receive an automated call informing them to pay their bill. If a few weeks go by, a representative from the credit card company will get in touch with them. If months go by and the customer is still not making any payments, usually the bad account will get sold to a collections agency. These companies specialize in doing whatever they can to get that money back. They buy the customer's bad account at discount price, hoping that if the full amount is paid off, they will make a nice profit.
Ok, most of you reading this have probably gotten these annoying phone calls and probably thought debt collectors were the biggest scum on the earth. But guess what? If it weren't for a means to get the money back that you borrowed, they wouldn't have lent it to you in the first place. If nobody ever paid back their debt, nobody would be able to borrow money and very few people would be able to buy a home. How many people do you know that have $300,000 in cash just sitting around?
Think for a moment how annoying it is to get phone calls every hour of the day from bill collectors. Now try to see it from their perspective. They're having conversations all day long with pissed off people who want to strangle them. They also probably have a manager that screams at them all day long to "GET THOSE DEADBEATS TO PAY". Could you imagine getting up every morning to go get screamed at for 8-10 hours?
You want to know why we like collections agency representatives? Because they're people. And we like all people. They're just doing their jobs just like everyone else in the world is, trying to put food on their table for their families. They can be a nuisance at times but their role is very important. If you lent someone thousands of dollars and you never saw it back, what would you do?
If you're having a hard time wrapping your head around the idea that bill collectors are good decent people, try having a conversation with one of them. They are very colorful and are always good for sharing stories with. When I owed Discover Card $10,000, I often got calls from a representative named Betty. At first I would always try to get off the phone when she called, but when I found out she made a mean rhubarb pie, I actually found myself calling her more than she called me. It's all about your attitude and approach.
Thursday, February 26, 2009
Since my last entry, I've gotten a lot of emails from people curious about Scientology. Who knew they were so popular! But we're glad we could play a role in humanizing them and making people realize they're not much different than you or me. I did get asked one question several times though:
"Is Scientology's program that goes to troubled areas called Vulture Ministries or Volunteer Ministries?"
The correct name for the organization is Scientology Volunteer Ministries. Vulture Ministries is just sort of a play on words because of how they prey on victims at a time of need, and then write up a bunch of press releases about how helpful they are. Honestly it's a little bit rude to call them vultures but I can definitely see why they would be referred to as that. We need to keep in mind that Scientologists are pretty much humans just like the rest of us and that if we're respectful of our fellow human, it will be easier for everyone to get along and the world will be a better place.
If you have more questions about their Volunteer Ministries, we suggest going to volunteerministers.org.
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
We're introducing a new feature here at People Liking People: People of the Day. Each day, we will showcase a type of person and talk about what makes them so likable. We feel this is a good chance for everyone to learn the importance of respecting one another, as there's something positive about each and every one of us.
Our People of the day for Feb. 25 2009 are Scientologists. Scientologists are often misunderstood, and often times the only thing someone knows about them is that they believe we came from aliens. Well there's a lot more to it than that. Scientologists work, eat, pay their bills, go out and have fun like the rest of us. The difference is that they also spend a lot of their time auditing and giving their money to Scientology.
I want to start by saying that some of my best friends are Scientologists, and they are some of the nicest people I know. Unfortunately many people see their ignorance as stupidity, and want to attack them for believing that a cult is the answer to their problems. At the end of the day though, you have to realize that everyone has something that's a little silly they believe in. Sure, most of us don't pay thousands of dollars as a result of it, but that just shows how committed Scientologists are to something they were lured into truly believing.
It's a common myth that Scientologists are these crazy psychotic people who really need psychiatric help, but have somehow got themselves caught up in Scientology. It's true that a lot of them are unstable people, but often times I've found they really just need a friend. One thing that many people probably don't know is that Scientologists are very good at cooking. My Aunt Susan is a Scientologist, and while we run and hide when she comes over, we all enjoy her brownies after she leaves. Oh, and we don't run and hide because she's a Scientologist. She has irritable bowel syndrome and anal leakage. We have to put sheets down on the couch before she comes down, but she does have a very good personality. One time she saved someone's life because she drove past their house and saw smoke coming out of the building. She immediately dialed 911 and the fire was able to be put out before anyone was hurt.
Scientologists really are great people, but one thing you should never bring up with them is politics. If you know not to go there, you can very easily make friends with a Scientologist.
Scientologists have this program where they send people out to problem areas where people are starving, or where a disaster has just struck. They comfort those people in a time of need. They use a technique called touch assist created by L. Ron Hubbard. I tend to think when he created it he was just looking for an excuse to touch all over the young boys and girls in the Church, but today it has many legitimate uses and has helped people all over the world.
We hope you have learned some things today; next time you see a Scientologist don't be afraid. Just be friendly and talk to him as if he were just a regular human.
Sunday, February 22, 2009
This all started back about three years ago. One day I was thinking about all the hatred in the world and how it's been going on for centuries. The wars, the famine, the fighting between families, as well as fighting within families. It extends all geographical and cultural borders and transcends time. There's gotta be a way to put a stop to all this, I thought. All the suffering, pain, and anguish that occurs every single day unnecessarily.
Well, I then stumbled on an idea. What if we could take all the energy we use for hating people and turn it into energy for liking people? I mean just take a second to really think about that. Let the idea just soak in your brain for a moment.
It would be nothing short of revolutionary.
For the past 3 years that's exactly what I've set out to do. It will be revolutionary, and it will change the way people interact. It will also end most of the suffering in the world because 99% of suffering stems from an underlying hatred. Of course we can't eliminate all suffering, as some is caused by natural causes such as floods and the inevitable death of family members, but hatred has an overwhelming role in planting the seeds of suffering.
This is the beginning of a movement folks. We've kicked it off with a song called "I Like People". But it's not going to stop there. This is the beginning of an education process - we first need to break down the hatred and unlearn those behaviors that contribute to it. Once the ways of old have been dismantled, the foundation for a new beginning will begin to be set in place.
There's something to like about every single person on this earth, whether they're a lawyer, director of communications, lesbian, or garbage collector. The only limits we have are limitations we put on ourselves. Let's break through those barriers. It's time to start the revolution.
Onto the Energy Transformation Process. You see, there is a finite amount of energy in this world. What I've found is that a good majority of this energy at any given second in time is being used on hate. What we need to do is transform this energy into energy used to like. Please examine the diagram below:
As I said earlier, in the next coming weeks and months, we'll get in depth with what's really going on here. But this is the energy transformation process in a nutshell. For obviously reasons, I can't reveal the interworkings of the converter just yet, but I wanted to give you all a general idea until proper protocols are set into place. As you can see, the energy used for hate will go down into the funnel which carries it right into the processor. From there the energy will be divided into 2 groups: unused energy which is to be discarded, and convertible energy that will go on to the next step. The usable energy will then go through the pipeline to the converter. Again, we can't reveal all the details of what goes on inside the converter just yet, but this information will come out when the time is right. All energy, yes all - 100% of the energy released from the converter will be energy that can and will be used for liking.
Note: not all energy for hating can be converted into energy for liking. We'll get into that more though in the coming weeks.
Thursday, February 19, 2009
Kudos to KSWO Channel 7 in Lawton, OK for staying on this story. Not all of the details have been released because the cat abuser is a minor, but our sources tell us his name is Kenny Glenn. We try to like all people here at People Liking People, but this may be one time we have to make an exception.