26 December 2010

coup contrecoup: Liberal 'Magic' Seems Religious

BO: Here's how fairness works.  Everybody open up your lunch box and put the contents on my table.
(students clamor to dutifully obey the Leader)
(Fairy Godmother organizes all the sandwiches in a stack, all the chips, etc. desegregating all the lunches into groupings.  She holds up the last sandwich baggie, different from all the rest.  It contains a single cookie.)

BO: Ah, okay.  It looks like we have a cookie in this one.
I took Ronnie's math reward cookie that he worked so hard on ... good job Ronnie on that Oreo (cue applause) ... then I crushed it; then each of you came up to the front and I dropped a cookie bit in your mouth and let you sip from the communal milk cup.
See how that works?  I have taken one cookie and turned it into 30.

Amy: But what about the leftover crumbs?

BO: I've pocketed those for the special ed class and the ESOL class coming next.

Amy: (no response as her stomach growled)

BO: I'll tell you when the next food item is coming.  See up here at the table? There's more than enough for everyone!  You'll get your fair share.  But first I want you to listen to some stories...that will help distract you...

25 December 2010

Yo Ho Ho Ho!

Merry Pirate Christmas!

They thought, those who Liberally planted sirens singing "the children!" or "the hungry!" that they were part of a Robin Hood merry band. Seize the riches! But when the riches are the community well and grain silo, you're not stealing from the evil filthy rich king, but from your neighbor. I ask you Left, is that fair? Is that the common good? Is that the best for the welfare of our nation? Are Progressives just Gypsies creating distraction while Obama 'Blue One' pirates for himself?

As the Democrat party eats itself over the November failure, the honor among thieves is oddly absent.

So, for this man is there any parley?

24 December 2010

States Are Not 'Too Big To Fail'

So now we have some Liberal states who want to take from other states, through the power of the Federal government to tax. More frugal states should not bail out others' bad decisions.  California, for example, should cut services or raise taxes at the state level to pay for what their constituents want.  Federal taxes should go to war efforts and the few other Constitutionally mandated responsibilities.
Liberal states that steal from others using the Federal structure is taxation without representation (and that's not fair, to quote Schoolhouse Rock.)
Lessons from Greece and England: you teach other people how to treat you. The governments there have trained their people to be dependent sheep and now that they need to be weaned a bit, there are tantrums.  It's better to put folks on hard tack and teach them to farm so they can provide for themselves...and others who can't, right?
Pimping Taxes

23 December 2010

The Parable of Noel and the elusive Ice Cream Sandwich

Noel came in around 7:15 and, as always, turned in his lunch money, as required, to his 4th grade teacher.  He then gave her a roll of pennies. Fifty cents that he'd collected from chores he'd done at home.
"That's for ice cream today," he beamed. "It's Friday and I'm celebrating."
"Hey, that's great!" said the Teacher.

Classwork began and around 10:00 the Teacher stepped out of the classroom.  A few minutes later she cleared her throat and asked for the students' attention.
"Children, Noel is celebrating today with ice cream!"  An immediate roar went up as the kids turned to smile and nod approvingly at Noel.

The Teacher reached into the hallway and retrieved a serving tray containing perfectly even slices of ice cream sandwich...each with a handy toothpick.

Noel's heart sank to his stomach.  What was this?  A misunderstanding!  The ice cream money was a treat for himself, not the whole class.  But he stayed quiet and smiled a little at the other happy classmates.

The Teacher passed down the rows, each child taking a single taste of ice cream sandwich.  Noel was happy to see that when the Teacher came to him after the rest had been served, there were several pieces remaining.  He reached to take one and then another.

"Oh, no Noel...take only one.  It's only fair that each student get the same amount."
Unhappily, but quiet, Noel popped the small bit of ice cream sandwich in his mouth and scowled.  But all the other children, whose attention had been turned toward the teacher at this point, nodded in agreement.  None of them were really very happy with the tiny treat after all.  It was just too small to enjoy.

Noel took out a book from home he'd chosen for reading and sank into a story about a red hen.

In a few minutes he saw from his vantage point at the back of the classroom, the Teacher gobbled up the remaining ice cream and tossed away the platter.  Some of the kids were grumbling and playing pirates with the sword-like toothpicks instead of doing school work.
"Children, please put away your toothpicks!" exclaimed the Teacher.  "Those are dangerous!"

After the toothpicks were packed away, most everyone, except Noel, forgot about the morning treat.

The next Friday, Noel brought in two shiny quarters, a gift from Grandma.  "Don't spend it all in one place!" she'd joked.
Noel delivered his lunch money to the Teacher and explained, "This extra fifty cents is for me...just me.  For ice cream.  Okay?"
The Teacher said, without looking up, "I will save this money just for you...yes.  I will put it in the ice cream envelope with your name on it and you can use it at lunch."  But, to Noel she seemed to be distracted by some noisy children.

Sometime around ten, Danielle raised her hand and interrupted the flow of everything by asking the Teacher, "Are we having ice cream again today like we did last Friday?"  She had a toothpick in her upraised hand...found just a moment before in her desk.

"No!" Noel coughed out involuntarily.

The entire class whirled around to glare at Noel.  "That's my ice cream," he said sheepishly.
"Sorry class," the Teacher said, "it seems that Noel doesn't want to share this week."
"Aw!" whined the disappointed classroom.  Ugly glances and snarky comments were muttered under breath all around.
"That's not fair," said Danielle.  "Why does Noel get to have ice cream and none of us?  Make him share!"
The Teacher listened to the grumbling from the class for several minutes before giving in.
"Okay, okay," she said, arms upraised in a quiet-down motion.  "Everyone pipe down and I'll take care of it."
The Teacher swiftly returned after a brief absence with a tray of tiny treats just like the week before.  As she doled out the ice cream, Danielle turned to Noel and said, "you are so selfish...but we got ice cream anyway so..." and out came her ugly pink tongue.
Laughter bubbled up all around as the class jeered Noel because of his selfishness and the tiny treat because it was "lame anyway."  One kid flicked his ice cream at another...and several joined in, making a mess and wasting the treat.

Noel endured the silent treatment from several 'friends' at lunch.  For the second week in a row he had not gotten his ice cream sandwich treat.

The next Friday came and predictably Danielle was the one to raise the morning treat question.
"I'm sorry class.  Noel didn't bring the money for the treat party this week."
An uproar ensued from the entire class.  Spitballs, airplanes, name-calling...angry looks.

The Teacher listened to the grumbling from the class for several minutes before giving in.
"Okay, okay," she said, arms upraised in a quiet-down motion.  "Everyone pipe down and I'll take care of it."
Once again, she passed out tiny bits of ice cream sandwich.
"Noel, we'll just subtract that from your lunch money.  You'll need to skip lunch today or bring in more money on Monday to make up the difference."

"Well, that's not fair," Noel complained.  "I don't have any more ice cream money."

"That's the way it is.  Your class expects this every week now so you need make sure you bring it in."

Frustrated and angry, Noel worked doubly hard at chores and lawn mowing to bring in a dollar on the following Friday.  "Maybe if I bring it more, they'll be satisfied," he thought.

The next Friday, he brought in his dollar and turned it in dutifully.
When the teacher brought in the ice cream mid-morning, there was only one ice cream sandwich cut up.

Noel decided he would eat a big breakfast and never give over his money to the teacher again, no matter how much abuse it meant from the rest of the 'less fortunate.'

22 December 2010

Means Test Those On 'Benefits'? ObamaVille is Cold!

Would those who voted for Hope and Change be willing to give 1/10th of their worldly possessions to the common good? Half? What if, in the mode of fairness, someone came to each home to ensure that you had adequate food, clothing and shelter...but those 'extras' like a big flat screen and a gaming system would have to be sold to pay those bills you seem to need 'benefits' for. This is called 'means testing' and its what Democrats want for those who are retiring.
The safety net has become a culture.  A culture of corruption is not worth saving.
Macon, GA woman complains it is too difficult to get the government to pay part of her electric bill so she can stay warm. Pictured above. Discuss.

21 December 2010

Smooth Criminal Obama Wants America To Walk Like The Rest Of The World

As our Commander in Chief has had the keys taken away after his 2 year joy ride into Socialism, we're left with a dirty car full of cigarette butts, crumpled cans and junk food wrappers.  After we've replaced the stripped gears, burnt parking brake and busted oil pan, we're left with the job of cleaning up the mess and getting things back in order...which will take patience and time.  'Never Again' should be the lesson we've learned.
When new drivers get behind the wheel, they need to be trained in the rules of the road, challenged on test courses and on paper. Proof of insurance and identity must be in the vehicle. A current tag, indicative of taxes paid, must be displayed clearly.
We Americans failed to do due diligence to ensure that the driver had the proper papers and skills. The world cheered at first, but begin to understand, like we do, that the engine of Earth's enterprise has been spiked with sugared gas.  The road forward has been littered with nails and diversions.

As examiners and passengers, we let a smooth-talking criminal jack our car.

13 December 2010

Unions Transforming Into Temp Agencies? ... a rough draft ramble about Economy (and China)

How would you like to have your birthday off? Weeks and weeks of guaranteed vacation? Increases every year at 4 times the rate of inflation. Sounds like a sweet deal? It is, and it's the deal that government employee unions have in a small Detroit suburb.  It's such overpayment, in fact, that the city is seeking bankruptcy protection so it can renegotiate contracts and get out of big debt.
In large municipalities we're seeing the re-emergence of local unions for electrical repair, plumbing and other skill trades.  These unions are beginning to advertise a single number for 'all your needs' and they'll send out a certified, drug-tested, legal, skilled technician right away.
The beauty of these organizations is that they act as a company without having all those pesky corporate regulations, because each worker who shows up, is an independent contractor.  But looky...the union membership dues get you discounts on healthcare, referrals for work, etc.  And if you are sick...no problem, someone else is on the job.  And if you want to take a vacay...no problem, off you go.  And if your rates aren't as discount as the customer expects...well, there's that handshake agreement that all of the guys in that are 'certified' will charge $50 per trip and $75 per hour.  Weird.  No worry about competition.
And those folks who don't want to play ball...well, your union dues can campaign for 'certification' and can advertise in your locality to explain how your competition is small potatoes and shoddy.
And about those teachers' unions who insist that tenure is a better way of retaining teachers pay-for-performance...it depends on your goal? Parents want the best teachers for their kids in government school...unions want control to run the schools like a small prison, with little oversight or information within the community.
President Obama's administration has created a fertile environment for the rise of unions.  The encouragement to work collectively rather than empowering individuals has proved damaging in many aspects of society.  McVictimization of America, or the loss of property, or the inability to provide for family, or the constant worry over what will happen next in the local or broader economy.  Crime up.  Severe weather.  Hard candy Christmas evolving into Black Christmas.  Hopelessness on the rise.
So it makes sense that the brotherhood and solidarity of the collective union is making a comeback.  Safety in numbers appeals to our basest instincts when we're threatened.  The surety of benefits, steady income stream, and guaranteed breaks means less personal risk, less competition, less uncertainty.
Is it any surprise that the unions are appearing to evolve into a membership co-op, blessed with the ability to avoid anti-competitive lawsuits, the ability to undercut the mom & pop standalone shop, and the 'certification' of membership which permits is members to work as much or as little as they desire, ultimately does a huge disservice to the patrons it serves by raising the rates by eliminating competition and rewarding members handsomely.
Will card-check make us all temps? With ObamaCare mandating collectivist insurance, eliminate the last vestige of the employer/employee relationship (remember the gold watch retirement? gone before I came along, how about you?)  Next, we can expect that corporations, overwhelmed with 1099 paperwork, research on the legality of their workforce, and confused by diversity requirements, will seek a temporary and replaceable workforce.  People will swap in and out like cogs of a machine. The Exceptional America will fade into the past like those gold watches and the codependent relationship employees once enjoyed with their employer.  Collectivists seek to replace individual pride and skill with uniformity and predictable inefficiency.  No spark.  No out-of-the-box thinking.  No invention.  How very...Mao.
Could we be on the verge of a huge move toward the virtualization of the American workforce?
Texas windfarm energy, you know that green energy that is supposed to replace that dirty, filthy oil they're pumping there...well, it turns out that the company who'll manufacture the turbines...China.  The company that won the bid to install and maintain the windfarm...in China.  So whose economy are we stimulating with these 'new economy' jobs.
I'm reminded of Sam Walton's vision of "Buy America" back when Wal-Mart was a warehouse club with products on pallets.  I worked for him back then, before the slipstream economy made Wal-Mart the big box of cheap-stuff filled with short-bus screamers.
A prime example of how our nation's gut has changed shows up in the Food Stamp program...now being accepted at fast food locations.  What the, what?  Shouldn't food stamps be there for items that WIC approves? You know milk, cheese, flour...basics...not Taco  Bell.  If these folks aren't working, they have the time to make biscuits and soak beans.  And if we're going to pay for healthcare, should we be handing them a meal ticket for high-sodium, high-fat foods?  Shouldn't they be eating a salad?  Down is up.  Up is down.  Inside out.
Until we as a nation prioritize our need to stimulate the economy at home; empower individuals to earn and spend based on the needs of individual families, we're all temp's renting apartments in the hive of queen Obama's collectivism.

05 December 2010

Lessons in diplomacy from a Little Big Planet

I was watching a kid playing Little Big Planet this morning. This is a socially-enabled game on Playstation 3 which allows each player to build their own challenges or races and visit others who've done the same. It's massive and overwhelmingly clever.
While playing a fun and challenging level, the kid was joined by another player whose character was wearing the iconic Statue of Liberty costume. The kid had chosen an army-style uniform...I had to grin a little at the pride of Americanism in Little Big Planet.
But then something happened that I didn't expect.
During the gameplay, the visitor decided to smack the army guy in the face with her torch. The kid said, "Hey, that's not right" and proceeded to boot the villain disguised as Lady Liberty from the game.
No discussion.
No appeasement.
No questions about why would someone do that or what did I do to deserve it, just...boop.
It seemed like a small epiphany, this archetype of reality. What should we do when someone, disguised in the robes of freedom, smacks us in the face? They get ejected from the game. No questions.
Maybe we should require other countries to prove their affirmation to freedom, equality, and friendliness to the American way before permitting them to enjoy in the riches that result.
Otherwise we can expect our enemies to continue to pilfer the coffers of America and use those in war against us.
Dear Janet...profile.