Jan 30, 2010

What Do You Do When Your Car's Accelerator Sticks?


2,130,000 On WI No Call List

The WI No Call List is the most popular consumer protection program in the history of the state with 2,130,000 telephone numbers registered--40% are cell phones. Sign up details to the left. The population of WI is 5,627,000.

Wisconsin composer Kevin MacLeod’s melodies are on 37,000 You Tube videos

I used to be among the privileged few who told film stories on TV newscasts.
Now I am among millions who tell video stories on the Internet via You Tube.
A lot of us like to use music with our videos, but using current or classic recording artists can get us into copyright trouble. So we look for music in the public domain--in other words, music you can use for free. That’s how we have found professional composer Kevin MacLeod who divides his time between New York and his hometown Green Bay, WI. Kevin gets paid for composing music and scoring films and commercials, but he also puts a lot of his music on the internet for anyone to use free of charge.
MacLeod’s melodies are on 37,000 You Tube videos.

Finally! Your hidden 401(k) fees revealed

Personal Finance blog - Money Magazine

TripAdvisor's 2010 Top 10 Dirtiest Hotels

2010 Top 10 Dirtiest Hotels

Jan 22, 2010

Secrets of TV news: Confessions of an anchorman

The Daily Caller

How to report robocalls

This week I received an illegal robo telemarketing call on my cell phone...something like, I'm calling about your credit card...nothing wrong, but you can get a lower interest rate.
My cell captured the caller's number and it was all I needed to nail these illegal, irritating skunks. I reported the call by linking to the electronic complaint form which goes to the No Call List at WI Consumer Protection. (Click here to report federal No Call complaints) You can also sign up your cellphone and landline with the WI No Call List via links on this blog. (Sign up for federal No Call List)

FCC: Proposed new regulations for robocalls

Media Law Prof Blog:

African birds courtesy of National Geographic Wildcam Africa, Mashatu Game Reserve, Botswana, Africa. Music: Kevin MacLeod

They don't plow the Janesville GM parking lot any more.

I carry my computer in a brief case when visiting McDonald's for breakfast in Janesville and some people there think that I am a businessman. The McDonald's is across the street from the Rock County Job Service office and employment seekers come over for coffee. This week as I was leaving the restaurant, a dignified man in his late 50s stopped to ask if I had a job available for him. I need some home improvement work done so I asked about his occupation. In the cold wind, he patted down his gray hair and said tool and die maker but he would consider other jobs.
I admired him for being aggressive in trying to help himself. I worried about him being older and out of work. And I felt a little guilty about not having to work any more for money.
On my way home, I drove past the massive but vacant GM plant. They don't plow the employee parking lot any more.

Jan 16, 2010

Press Release: WI's most successful consumer lawyer takes your case for free

Click here for press release for journalists

Have a beef with a bad business? How would you like to have Wisconsin's most successful consumer lawyer--in my opinion--helping you free of charge?
Wisconsin taxpayers were helped by Jeff Archibald when he was part of a team hired by the state to get billions of dollars in tobacco settlements and multi-million dollar settlements from giant drug companies for Medicaid overcharge fraud. And Jeff just helped to get a $50 million judgment for Kentucky taxpayers for drug overcharges. All told he has won drug company judgments for taxpayers in seven states including Illinois, Alaska, Hawaii, South Carolina, and Idaho.
Jeff alternates his time at Archibald Consumer Law Office in Madison and works with a team of younger lawyers helping individual consumers. Jeff, David Dudley, and Ivan Hannibal go after questionable car salespeople, bill collectors, door-to-door salespeople, home improvement contractors and others who abuse consumers. They use a little known law that allows them to collect double damages for consumers as well as attorney fees.
Jeff Archibald (608) 661-8855

U.S. Says Johnson and Johnson Paid Kickbacks to Omnicare

"The payments violated the federal anti-kickback statute and led Omnicare, a pharmacy company specializing in dispensing drugs to nursing home residents, to submit false claims to Medicaid, the complaint charged."

FTC has brought 18 enforcement actions against telemarketer “robocalls”


Jan 9, 2010

I am Glen Loyd's hair

I am Glen Loyd’s hair.

You may know that Glen retired recently. Well, as Glen's hair, I am announcing my retirement, too.

Glen doesn’t understand this…why the top of his head looks like a vacant lot now. He still uses high-performance shampoo, full-and-thick conditioner, dippity do and glitter hair spray, but as Glen's so called hair, I’m not sprucing up anymore. Glen is mostly combing scalp these day.

Because Glen spent most of his career before TV cameras, I--his hair--was vitally important to him. For example, when Glen was a 36-year-old Action reporter for the CBS-TV affiliate in Dallas, I was long, dark and wavy. I received $30 haircuts and a Dallas radio poll ranked us as hot and handsome.

You don’t think hair is important in TV news? Glen’s station in Dallas hired two anchorwoman for Eyewitness News who had zero journalism experience. They were beautiful models--one African American, the other a buxom blonde. Both had long Luster Cream curls. We three delightful dos were adored by millions in Texas.

An anchorman’s career often peters out as he ages and loses hair. Glen thought he was lucky, because at age 40, I--his hair--still covered his head although I was graying. He was happy looking in the dressing room mirror because he couldn’t see what his children started laughing about. I was thinning at the crown.

But I hung in there while Glen turned 50 and 60. Yes, I turned white and sparse but I was doing my job. Glen was appearing on TV many times a week and still he could fluff me--his hair--preparing for induction into the Wisconsin Broadcasters Hall of Fame at age 65.

Then Glen turned 70 and retired many of his roles. Well, it was time for me--his hair--to retire too. I was happy to serve him, but I am old and dry and most hair brushes have more strands than me now. I am not responding to glen’s comb anymore. The barber only charges $11.

But as Glen's hair, I will always remember those days in Dallas…and those beautiful Luster Cream curls and my Wildroot mop.

Hmmm…Hey Glen, get out your glitter hair spray! Let’s try a comb over.

The Way We Live Now - Walk Away From Your Mortgage!


10 Ways to Cut Your Travel Costs In 2010


Jan 1, 2010

The bogus business of boosting your computer's performance. - By Farhad Manjoo


A Green Light for Car Dealers to Rip Off Buyers?

As a consumer reporter, I've had many consumers (especially women) complain to me about car dealers. Salepeople can play rough and if you don't use Consumer Reports magazine when buying car, you are likely to pay hundreds of dollars too much. Some low income families told me they ended up in serious debt for what turned out to be unreliable transportation.

So why does an industry with a questionable reputation get financial help (cash for clunkers) subsidized by taxpayers? And now "A Green Light for Car Dealers to Rip Off Buyers?"