Friday, October 24, 2008


Tomorrow night comic headliner Stephanie Hodge ("Unhappily Ever After, Nurses), Destiny (The Tonight Show, VH-1, MTV plus my Riviera, Pechanga and Sahara co-star) — and I present our 3-woman comedy show, "Pain is Inevitable, Sex Optional" at the Whitefire Theatre on Ventura Blvd. in Sherman Oaks. It's a work in progress. We discuss men, sex, love, sex, death, sex, God, sex and politics... Our MC is the funny, brilliant Nestor Rodriguez... and we'll have other standup comics warming up the crowd.
Our host, the hilarious Nestor Rodriguez:

Pain is Inevitable as thousands are finding out each week as indicators of a worsening crisis in the US are mounting daily as the economic downturn takes an ever greater toll on jobs. More layoffs were announced this week in the US and new data was also released showing a rising numbers of American families losing their homes through foreclosure.

There are fears that the US economy was ready to go into a depression. It has been said that the banking system manufactures recessions to give investors a chance to pick up bargain stocks or entire businesses. One has to wonder if there is reality in those sentiments.

Reuters reports that several US corporations which have made major layoff announcements in the past few which include:

• Chrysler, which announced an additional 1,825 layoffs on Thursday

• Goldman Sachs, which said it will cut 10 percent of its staff, or almost 3,300 jobs

• Pharmaceutical giant Merck, which announced it is shedding 12 percent of its workforce

• Biotechnology company Maxygen, which said it will cut nearly 30 percent of its workforce

• Money manager Janus Capital Group, which is sacking 9 percent of its workforce

• Xerox, which said yesterday it will cut 5 percent of its staff, or 3,000 positions

• Mining equipment maker Terex Corporation, which is laying off hundreds of its workers

• United Parcel Service, which announced plans to cut an unspecified number of jobs next year

• Fidelity National Financial Inc., which announced it will slash 1,000 jobs and cut pay by 10 percent

• Financial services conglomerate Popular Inc., which is cutting 600 jobs and closing more than a quarter of its branches in the US.

The US Labor Department reported that new applications for unemployment insurance increased by 15,000 to 478,000 in the week ending October 18, significantly more than was anticipated by economists. A year ago, new jobless claims stood at 333,000.

Unemployment rises in a recession. At the end of a longer recession, companies have the luxury of hiring from a larger labor pool at lower wages. Some companies citing hard times reduce benefits, cut vacation and other benefits of their workforce.

Workers in the auto industry continue to bear much of the growing assault on jobs and conditions. Chrysler announced 1,825 layoffs through the elimination of a shift at an assembly plant in Toledo, Ohio and said it would bring forward the closure date of a plant in Newark, Delaware that had been scheduled to close in 2009.

JP Morgan told Reuters they expect the General Motors to lose more than $12 billion next year. Like Chrysler, GM is slashing costs ahead of a potential merger between the two companies.

GM announced Wednesday it was considering selling AC Delco, its international parts subsidiary, a measure which will inevitably lead to further job losses. The company also said it will suspend many salaried employee benefits, including matching contributions for workers' 401(k) retirement plans.

A survey released by listing service RealtyTrac found that foreclosure filings, default notices, auction sale notices and bank repossessions—were reported on 765,000properties in the three months ending in September, up 71 percent from the third quarter in 2007. Six states—Nevada, California, Florida, Ohio, Michigan, and Arizona—accounted for more than 60 percent of all foreclosure activity. Nevada recorded the highest foreclosure rate, with one out of every 82 housing properties issued a foreclosure filing.

The RealtyTrac report concluded that the third quarter figures underestimate the situation. Many states have passed new laws requiring lenders to issue extended notices before filing default notices. These laws artificially suppressed September's foreclosure figures by temporarily postponing the full impact. Rising unemployment will further accelerate the catastrophe.

Rod Dubitsky, managing director for asset-backed securities at Credit Suisse, told BusinessWeek he expects that more than 5 million American families will lose their homes through the year 2012. He said 1.69 million families will lose their homes in 2008.

As election day draws near the hopes of millions of struggling Americans rest on whether or not Barack Obama is elected. In Obama we see a light at the end of an ever-growing darkened tunnel.

In the ever growing world of layoffs and foreclosures we all feel that "Pain Is Inevitable, Sex Optional and the election of Barack Obama is a must.