[thechat] <grumble />

Matt Warden mwarden at gmail.com
Thu Feb 19 09:01:59 CST 2009

On Thu, Feb 19, 2009 at 9:24 AM, Luther, Ron <Ron.Luther at hp.com> wrote:
> I imagine some folks have already noticed this cheery little bit o' news this morning:
> http://www.theregister.co.uk/2009/02/19/hp_pay_cuts/

Sorry to hear that, Ron. I hadn't seen that until now...

> Not such good times.  My wife was laid off (made redundant) last week.  I have a bunch of relatives up in the Detroit area where things are pretty gloomy.  And I'm a bit worried about how the financial aid cutbacks will impact my son in grad school... (Retirement?  What's that?)

I also hadn't heard about financial aid cutbacks. Are these reduction
in subsidized loans? All I had heard about was an increase in Pell
grants, but that probably wouldn't help your grad school son, since
that's mostly undergrad.




But again looks like it's all undergrad.

> So how's the world treating the rest of my extended evolt-family?

I'm ok so far, but some of my coworkers have not fared so well. A
friend out of the Cleveland office was "re-aligned" (laid off) a few
weeks ago. She is a Malaysian citizen, so she has 30 days to find a
new employer who will sponsor her visa or she has to pick up and go
back to Malaysia. In this economy, that's probably not likely.

All this government spending doesn't really make me feel warm inside
from an ideological point of view, but it is great for us in
consulting. Government agencies don't do much themselves, especially
when we're talking about windfall appropriations. Think if you're a
government agency with the same budget for the last 10 years, and
suddenly you get money for a huge $50billion project. You don't have
the personnel for that, and you know it's not going to be sustained,
so you really can't HIRE the personnel for that. You need smart
capable people who can come in, do the project with low risk of
failure (because that would be very bad from a PR perspective given
the conditions with which you received the funding), and then get the
f out. That's pretty much consulting right there. You can bet every
major consulting firm has teams sitting in war rooms watching every
talking head talking about every minute detail of the stimulus

Yeah, some jobs are created. Yeah, fake money flows into the economy.
But it's mostly coming through consultants and contracting companies
for short-term engagements, not long-term employment. Again, great for
us, but we didn't need it.

Anyway, Ron, I hope you've seen the worst of it. By the way, I'm
moving down to Austin in a couple weeks. I know that's sort of the
red-headed stepchild of Texas, but then again I do have red hair...

Matt Warden
Cincinnati, OH, USA

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