Tag Archives: politics

No Pension for You

It has always been a fascination when I read about pensions — especially forced pension payments from those who are made to pay as a requirement of their continued employment, with some paying over $800 a month into State “pension” coffers — and how those workers are demonized by the Far Right who believe public servants and private pensioners are somehow taking advantage of those who do not pay into a pension program. Pensions are not payoffs or welfare. Pensions are earned investment money entrusted to public or private equity.


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Has the War Already Been Won Against Public Schooling?

I come from a long line of public school teachers.  Our family believes in government-sponsored schooling that teaches facts and science and nature.  If one desires something of a Faith-infused-immersed learning, there are Churches for that; we enliven the mind not with mystery or superstition but by hard, verifiable, facts that can be reliably predicted with logic and learning.

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Teddy Roosevelt and The Man in the Arena

On April 23, 1910, Teddy Roosevelt presented a spectacular speech at the Sorbonne in Paris, France.

The title of his argument was — “Citizenship in a Republic” — and here is the famous “Man in The Arena” excerpt:

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better.

The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.

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What Can Be Done to Help the Syrian People?

There should be no doubt that the situation in Syria is beyond dreadful.  The country is torn apart by an escalating civil war in which chemical weapons have been used on an innocent populace. It has yet to be established which of the warring factions employed these weapons – it is presumed by many that it was government forces.

There is no doubt that they were used.  So who sold them?  Why are chemical weapons allowed to be manufactured and sold – especially to unstable countries?  When you sell a cooker – you know its going to be used for cooking – when you sell  a boat you know it is going to be used for sailing – when you sell a chemical weapon you now it is going to be used to attack, kill, maim and poison people.

It will not help those people who died in Syria last week – but I propose the United Nations grow a set of B*LLS  and ban the manufacture and sale of Chemical weapons and their constituent parts.

The British people spoke loud and clear last week when the government motion to join with the USA in attacking Syria was defeated in the House of Commons.

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Too Pretty to Work Here

Did you hear the one about the Iowa Supreme Court ruling that you can be fired for cause from your job because you’re just too pretty and tempting?

Standing by a December decision, the Iowa Supreme Court ruled Friday that a male dentist who fired a female assistant because she was too attractive and threatened his marriage did not commit sex discrimination.

The all-male court ruled against Melissa Nelson, who sued her former employer James Knight, alleging Knight’s wife told Knight to fire Nelson because “she was a big threat to our marriage.” Knight fired Nelson in January 2010 after more than 10 years working for him, later testifying that she was not fired for performance reasons.

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A Passover Story: The Most Awkward Silence

During the first two days of the holiday of Passover, my family was invited to a lunch at a friend’s home where we have been numerous times — the family positively loves Chaim. We have been going there so long that we have gone from being the ones who are invited to being the parents of the actual person who everyone wants to see. After everyone eventually got settled around the table, there was a latecomer to the meal, someone whom we had seen before, and though he did not seem to recognize us we immediately recognized him.

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