Friday, May 9, 2008

Hard rock luck hotel

The USA Today (maybe not a great paper but certainly a big paper, ran a story on how hard hit folks are in the current economic down turn. This particular story would have been ideal to run April 1st but alas this story is no joke. This is how USA Today chooses to express how hard hit the “little” guy is thanks to the current economy:

Carlos Bueno and his wife, Mayra, drove three times last year from their home in Houston to a casino in Lake Charles, La., but they won't be making the two-hour drive this summer.

"Gas prices are the main reason," says the 32-year-old father of three children who works for a utility company and also is canceling the family's annual vacation to the Dominican Republic. . . .

To save money on casino trips, Al Katz sold his SUV last month and bought a more fuel-efficient Toyota Camry.

Katz, a 55-year-old comedian, drives with his wife, Colleen, about 70 miles every week or two from his home in Kissimmee, Fla., to the Hard Rock Casino in Tampa. They also drive more than nine hours a few times each year to gamble in Biloxi, Miss.

"We may have to eliminate a trip or two" if the economic downturn continues, says Katz, who entertains on cruise ships. "Every time I get off a cruise ship, gas is a quarter more expensive."

Marie Braun, 45, of Olathe, Kan., has already made the decision to cut back, from five casino visits a year to two or three visits. Gas is too expensive for a 60-mile round trip to Missouri, says Braun, who works for a telecommunications company.

"It's pretty tough to justify spending money on any kind of entertainment when it costs so much just to get to work each day," she says.

Oh so sad! These people are on the verge of loosing EVERYTHING due to the economy! They have no food, no home, no cars… no wait, they do have those things and in fact they have much more. They actually seem to have so much disposable income (even in this devastating economy) that they can still afford to take multiple trips a year to give their excess money to casinos.

This is similar to the old story of the cold war in the former USSR. There they used to show news clips from the 60s and 70s of war protesters and riots to demonstrate how bad things were in America and what the viewers took away was “they all have new shoes”.

The news is so worked up over pushing the story of a bad US economy that they will latch onto anything to help make their point, not realizing how ridicules their examples come across.

It is almost the punch line of a joke “the economy is SO bad… How bad it is? It is so bad, this year I can only afford 2 trips to Vegas to gamble!”

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