Saturday, 9/14/13, Public Square

theodore roosevelt


by | September 14, 2013 · 6:00 am

15 responses to “Saturday, 9/14/13, Public Square

  1. Robert Reich addresses one of the many ways businesses use to take advantage of workers and to maximize their profits with little regard for the people who help make those profits reality.

    Robert Reich —

    A few years ago the term “contingent worker” was coined to depict what was then a rather small percentage of working people who had no regular, predictable paychecks or hours, and didn’t receive the legal protections accorded full-time workers. They mostly included temp and part-time workers. The new reality is that a large percentage of American workers — perhaps now a majority — can no longer predict what they’ll be earning month to month or even week to week, nor their work hours. In addition to the two groups above, they also include contract workers, free-lancers, and all others who are paid according to how much business they do — from tips to billable hours. This change has occurred as businesses have turned their payrolls into variable costs rather than fixed costs, so that the amount spent on employment rises or falls with the amount of business they do. This increases profits and reduces uncertainties.

    But most working people still live in a fixed-cost world. They have to pay their monthly bills and mortgages. Many also have to attend to the needs of children or elderly parents. Yet their pay and hours are increasingly unpredictable — generating anxieties and insecurities, and logistical nightmares, even if they are able to make ends meet. Nor do these workers and these families benefit from laws that were enacted when employment was full-time and regular: requiring time-and-a-half pay for over 40 hours per week, occupational safety, Social Security, unemployment insurance, and worker’s compensation.

    This contradiction — variable-cost employment and fixed-cost lives — isn’t being talked about, but it’s growing. And along with continued high unemployment and declining real incomes, it’s undermining our living standards. If we still lived in a society that paid attention to the needs of average working people instead of catering mainly to the needs of business, this problem, too, would be on the national agenda.

    • wicked

      There’s a downside for businesses doing this that they will eventually realize. People with little or no disposable income, (un)generated by these screw-the-workers practices, are not able to buy products or services offered by these companies. It’s called Karma, folks, but the high and mighty don’t even bother to think of where their greed will lead. And the world won’t want their crap products and services either.

  2. (from the link): When a country places more importance on sports than on academic achievement, its decline is inevitable. The American Decline is real and this is where it comes from.

    This is why intelligence and knowledge is disparaged in the country that reached the Moon. These days, intellectuals are mocked as “faggy” and unmanly as if brute strength somehow contributed to the technical prowess, economic agility and innovation that made America a superpower.

    This is why our politics are a disaster. When you raise a generation to believe that throwing a ball is more important than fulfilling their civic duty to make informed decisions, you allow charlatans to sell their lies to the public unchallenged.

    • I’ve been saying this same thing for years….

      And might I add – for the cherry on top of the decline of an intellectual country theme – how a bunch of people can wait in long lines to buy an overpriced deep fried chicken sandwich just to prove how much they love their God and Jesus and HATE their fellow Americans, who happen to be gay..

      I am still trying to figure that one out……

      • BTW – it was Mike Huckabee – a self-professed preacher and hate talk radio/television shock jock – that started that entire show of stupidity.

        I wonder….how much stock did a certain backwoods preacher own in that overpriced chicken place?

      • Indy, I love you for being so outraged about that chicken sandwich bullshit. The LGBT community has some great supporters here, but your primal scream about the chicken sandwich always makes me laugh and then feel all warm and fuzzy inside!

  3. OH….but fnord……didn’t you know that Jesus was the star quarterback for the Nazarene Knights football team?

    Go Nazzies……..

    heavy sarcasm/// (as if you didn’t recognize it when you saw it – huh)

  4. I had not realized September 14th is the day Theodore Roosevelt became the president.

    Roosevelt will forever be known as the national parks president – and isn’t it sad that we have currently Republicans who are so willing to sell our national parks to the highest bidder in the corporate elitists’ group?

    Can you imagine Yosemite National Park becoming McDonald Land or – perhaps, Chick-fil-A Land?

    This is what is wrong with the current Republican Party – they are too obsessed with MONEY–MONEY–MONEY going into al the ‘right’ pockets

    Roosevelt was also known for the phrase – walk softly but carry a big stick.

    Again…..IMHO – these current CONservative Republicans are only turned on by the ‘carry a big stick’ part of Roosevelt’s theory.

    Hey – real power does not come from the guy carrying the biggest stick… these Christian CONS would learn if they only bothered to read that Bible they keep thumping…..

    Goliath had all the advantages to win that epic battle – didn’t he?

    Enough said?

    • One of my pals and I were talking about this last week. In today’s environment, it could ONLY be Wally World National Park at Yosemite, and even then, I don’t think it would happen. Damn good thing those parks were created when they were. They’d never happen today.

  5. While I understand non-profits need to fundraise….but there is something that sticks in my throat when I hear of for-profit companies doing the fundraising for non-profits.

    Maybe I am way too cynical (who, me?) – but as a donor I want to know exactly how much of my donation is going to actually go towards the people I am told needs he help?

    Especially the for-profit companies get an 85 percent of the donations..

    I know we have discussed non-profit groups before on or blog…..but DAMN, we still think we are the most moral country on this planet ….even when we know huge profits are being made by people who could care less about the actual cause they market as being such a wonderful charity?

    This is why I have chosen a very select few charities that I know where my money goes……and they do very good work.

    Please note – from this article – the poor children in some underdeveloped country is once again the ‘bait’ in this con game (yes, I mean C-O-N).

    I always have to wonder – how many times has that same picture or video of that same little brown-skinned boy or girl has been used to line the pockets of so-called charity workers?

    I also wonder……if the truth be known….is that boy or girl now an adult and has their own poor little children having their pictures exploited?

  6. Well, look what I just found while net surfing…..

    Maybe someone should start a boycott of Chic-fil-A for their lack of support for their local NFL football team?

    I’m sure Chic-fil-A will see the beauty in showing one’s support for a cause they believe in – wouldn’t they?

    BTW – I know what it is like to be disappointed in your favorite NFL team. Hell, I am a lifelong Chicago Bears fan…

    But I sure as hell would not be boasting about it on some public sign – would you?

  7. 11 questions to see if libertarians are hypocrites

    (from the link): Libertarians have a problem. Their political philosophy all but died out in the mid- to late-20th century, but was revived by billionaires and corporations that found them politically useful. And yet libertarianism retains the qualities that led to its disappearance from the public stage, before its reanimation by people like the Koch brothers: It doesn’t make any sense.

    They call themselves “realists” but rely on fanciful theories that have never predicted real-world behavior. They claim that selfishness makes things better for everybody, when history shows exactly the opposite is true. They claim that a mythical “free market” is better at everything than the government is, yet when they really need government protection, they’re the first to clamor for it.

    That’s no reason not to work with them on areas where they’re in agreement with people like me. In fact, the unconventionality of their thought has led libertarians to be among this nation’s most forthright and outspoken advocates for civil liberties and against military interventions.

    Merriam-Webster defines “hypocrisy” as “feigning to be what one is not or to believe what one does not.” We aren’t suggesting every libertarian is a hypocrite. But there’s an easy way to find out.

    Continue reading:

  8. Well, our ol’ buddy Steve Anderson is back whining about that mean ol’ librl media. It’s not his fault he made that huge budget mistake, got fired, er, decided to spend more time with his family, and then went to work for Dear Dave Trabert at the Koch owned Kansas Policy Institute.

    Don’t we all know it’s not their fault the state is headed for a fiscal train wreck? Just listen to him. I went to college with him and he’s the same SOB today he was then. His family is from my hometown and we were both finance majors and sat next to each other in most classes. I could tell you lots of stories about how he made his way through college and even after by selling, um, well, you can guess what. Funny how his partners went to jail while he “escaped” to Oklahoma only to resurface as Brownstain’s budget director.