“I made a layoff!” Professor Plum cheered as he flipped the sponge ball through the hoop. Clearly, he read the mail. (More)

Professor Plum said he’s been watching the NBA playoffs. We doubt that, first because he knows your lowly mail room clerk is a lifelong Boston Celtics fan. The Celtics lost Game 7 to the Miami Heat last night, and Professor Plum is not quite clueless enough to rub that in. Moreover, had he been watching the playoffs, he would know the shot is called a layup. Rather offering a tart reply, we simply smiled and nodded. Ms. Scarlet then took Professor Plum to join the rest of the resident faculty in the wine cellar library, where they’ll spend the weekend drinking thinking on our motto of Magis vinum, magis verum (“More wine, more truth”).

The Professor of Astrology Janitor was nearer the verbal mark in the staff poker game. He raised with a pair of Jacks to open the pot, and Chef called. When Chef bet on the Ace-Seven-Four flop, the Professor of Astrology Janitor was sure she had an Ace. He folded, and said “I really need to lay off that hand.” Chef smiled and turned up a pair of Tens, which evoked the Professor of Astrology Janitor’s plaintive mewling. She left for the kitchen to make Bacon and Egg Breakfast Tarts, leaving your lowly mail room clerk to review the week’s correspondence….


Dear Ms. Crissie,

President Obama said “the private sector is doing fine” and the weakness is public sector jobs. Is he really that out of touch? He wants another stimulus, he wants to hire more government workers. He says we need more fireman, more policeman, more teachers. Did he not get the message of Wisconsin? The American people did. It’s time for us to cut back on government and help the American people.

Mitt in La MANHCA

Dear Mitt,

We agree with President Obama’s clarification that his “private sector is doing fine” remark was a misstatement. However, we note that the president was echoing Mark Zandi of Moody Analytics, who called state and local public sector layoffs “the most serious weight on the job market.” We further note that Gov. Scott Walker defended his proposed benefit cuts for Wisconsin’s public employees by saying the cuts were needed to prevent layoffs of teachers and other public workers. We also note that exit poll data suggest the Wisconsin result was a referendum on recalls, rather than an endorsement of Gov. Walker’s agenda. However, had it been an endorsement, we suggest “the message of Wisconsin” was making public employees more affordable, rather than firing them. That said, we recall your saying you “like being able to fire people,” so we are not surprised that you heard a different message.


Dear Ms. Crissie,

The problem is, we’ve seen a huge, huge build up, particularly of the federal workforce. What we need is to promote economic growth with fundamental tax reform, and then frankly there wouldn’t necessarily have to be any layoffs. But you’re not going to get fundamental, you’re not going to get economic growth with this president’s policies. And so, what we saw for a long time under the Obama administration and under his stimulus program, which obviously has clearly failed, is we saw private sector jobs lose out while he was increasing federal payrolls whether they needed to be increased or not.

Jeb in TX

Dear Jeb,

While the non-postal federal workforce has grown by 5.7% since 2009, we note that total government employment has fallen by over 636,000 jobs over that period, and economists estimate that has cut GDP growth by one-third. We also note that federal spending, federal revenue, and the federal deficit – relative to GDP – are lower relative than when President Obama took office. Conversely, we note that the private sector has regained all of the jobs lost during the Bush Recession. Thus we find no evidence for your claim that “we saw private sector jobs lose out” during the Obama administration. That said, we note that you want to privatize government services, so again we are not surprised that you see the data differently.


Dear Ms. Crissie,

Republican candidates were yelling “Jobs, Jobs, Jobs!” in 2010, but it seems they had something else hiding inside. I hope there’s nothing else hiding inside Chef’s Bacon and Egg Breakfast Tarts. How do I make them?

Tartly Hungry in Blogistan

Dear Tartly Hungry,

In the interest of full disclosure, we admit that there is something else hiding inside Chef’s Bacon and Egg Breakfast Tarts. Specifically, there is also cheddar cheese in there. To make them, first prepare the pastry from an 11-ounce package of pie crust mix, following the directions on the package. Next, divide the dough into four equal parts, roll each into a 6″ circle, and place the pastries over the backs of lightly-oiled 6-ounce custard cups, pleating the edges so they fit closely. Place the tarts on a cookie sheet and bake at 425° for 8-10 minutes until lightly browned, let cool for 5 minutes, then carefully remove the custard cups onto a cool cookie sheet. Place 2 slices of Canadian bacon in the bottom of each tart, sprinkle in shredded cheddar cheese leaving a small well in the center, and crack 1 egg into each tart. Add 1 Tbsp of milk to each tart and sprinkle with nutmeg, then bake at 350° for 15-20 minutes, until the eggs are cooked soft. Bon appétit!



Mitt in La MANHCA; President Obama’s clarification; Mark Zandi of Moody Analytics; Walker pension cuts to prevent layoffs; Wisconsin a referendum on recalls; like being able to fire people.

Jeb in TX; government employment losses and GDP growth; federal spending, revenue, deficit lower than 2009; private sector has regained all jobs lost during Bush Recession; wants to privatize government services.


Happy Sunday!