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Nominal Me

I'm falling in love with my camera and taking photos everywhere I go. That, combined with my passions for politics, sports, religion and other things we all agree on, makes this blog persist.

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Location: Astoria, New York, United States

I'm born in Manhattan and raised in Queens.

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Water, War, Sneakers, and TJ

Mankind is always finding newer and better reasons to wage war. The Wall Street Journal this morning has a story on a perfectly good new reason: fresh water supply. Will water become the new oil?

The Journal's David Wessel writes:

As the world population has tripled during the past century, the use of water has increased sevenfold. The Aral Sea in Central Asia, tapped relentlessly for agriculture, has 60% less water than it did 30 years ago. Lake Chad in West Africa is 1/20th its 1970s size. The Colorado River, the Rio Grande, the Indus in India and Pakistan and the Yellow River in China no longer consistently reach the sea.

The World Commission on Water predicts water use will increase 50% during the next 30 years and bemoans "the gloomy arithmetic of water." Others project that a decade from now 40% of the world's population -- three billion people -- will live in countries that hydrologists classify as "water stressed."

Water being a part of war is actually centuries old, but in this century even the most conservative hawk sees the precious item as a cause of war.

Concerns are growing. Perhaps alternative energy is not the biggest pathway to peace on Earth...limited water is.

Sneaker Ads Bash Pro Athletes

Joe Pereira of the Wall Street Journal notes that New Balance, a sneaker company with 13% of the market share, has come out with a risky ad campaign that bashes pro athletes:

New Balance's surge began in 1992, when, with only 3% of the market, it launched its "Endorsed by No One" campaign in an industry that even then was paying top stars millions to plug sneaker brands.

But that effort didn't take on professional sports directly, the way "Love or Money" does. Suggesting that National Basketball Association stars are lazy is a risky strategy, as the professionals and their big-name friends in sneakerdom could wind up attacking New Balance in turn.

Will the backlash against athletes translate into sneaker sales? Perhaps, especially among more conservative consumers rebelling against the NBA's lawless/hip hop mentality it is accused of promoting.

Americans with a red-state mentality may find another reason to buy the company's shoes, it's about as America-first as you can get, according to Pereira:

The company spends relatively little on promotion, in part because it can't afford much. But it also keeps its budget lean to compensate for high manufacturing costs. Approximately 40% of its shoes are assembled at five U.S. factories, where workers are paid an average of $13 per hour, plus benefits. Nike and Reebok, by contrast, import almost their entire shoe inventories from factories in Asia.

TJ's Greatest Hits

Check out a reel of TJ Allard's newest reel. He's had some great moments on Good Day Live, which was recently cancelled.

More Looking At Things


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Saturday, 01 October, 2005  

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