14 May 2014

Humpday Happenings...
It's the middle of the week and almost the middle of the month, which means the weekend cannot be that far off now.
Weather-wise, it's starting out as another gray/grey day in the Hoosierland, with temps reaching only into the mid-SIXTIES (nice cool-down), and with it comes some more rain (later perhaps), which is probably why the sun's only going make a scattered appearance today.
More severe weather is both to the north and south of Ft. Wayne, so we're not expecting anything adverse here (thankfully).
Feel free to top off that morning beverage-of-choice, as we prep ourselves to the day ahead.
*** First out of the retention pond is our WHO SAID THAT? quote of the week:
"One who gains strength by overcoming obstacles possesses the only strength which can overcome adversity.".
I can speak to this more than a few times over when it comes to this...and I'm sure many of you can just as well.
Now...WHO said this?
The answer at the top of tomorrow's post.
Meanwhile, back at the organ loft...
*** There is just ONE item I want to touch on today, and it might not sit with everyone all that well.
That's fine, as it's just my "take" on this, and the topic was the rather "spirited" discussion  last evening concerning collective bargaining for city employees at the City Council meeting held downtown..
Now, here are TWO views of the proceedings...you can decide for yourselves:
-- The Journal-Gazette story:
-- The News-Sentinel story:
We did see certain council member's TRUE colors last evening...I will say that much.
The vote was 6-2 for INTRODUCTION (only) of the 3 ordinances to be discussed...NOT for passage.
THAT is something that the two councilmen forgot to pay attention to.
Dissenting votes were cast by Geoff Paddock and the always testy and narrow-minded Glynn Hines (our district council-flunkie).
The dissenters got hoots and applause after their comments, but you have to consider those (in the audience) who may fall into the "low-information:" aspect of the rank and file of the unions affected.
Curiously, both Marty Bender (the mayor's RINO lapdog) and another FWPD deputy chief were strangely ABSENT from the proceedings.
Hey, Anyone see Marty around?
Those two councilmen (Jehl and Crawford) who introduced the ordinances are stating they are looking out for the taxpayers, while union reps and workers are looking out for...well, themselves.
I'm one of those people that believe that in a CIVILIZED and RATIONAL world, unions have, for the most part, OUTLIVED their usefulness.
This is no longer the Victorian age of Samuel Gompers or even John L. Lewis, where mine workers and child labor laws need to be created, or female-staffed garment sweat shops once operated here with impunity.
We're past that age and we've done well for workers.
Nor are we at a point where SAFETY for workers is being ignored like in the days of the meat-packing plants described in Upton Sinclair's "The Jungle".
We're not even at the age were autoworkers have to assemble their products TOTALLY BY HAND, as in decades past.
And yet, the cars cost WAY MORE...go figure.
Robotics have made such jobs easier, and in some cases, obsolete.
We are in a different time than when a labor union MEANT something and actually wasn't trying to fleece our pockets to line their own.
This nation has created SO many departments and agencies to address the issues and problems encountered through union representation of workers across the board...from truck drivers to welders, to ship builders to educators...everyone seems to be included in the mix these days.
Yet, the truth is this...less than TWENTY-FIVE PERCENT of all workers in this country are IN a union..
Now, if unions were THAT good and STILL needed so badly, then WHY isn't that number a helluva lot HIGHER?
Because an overwhelming majority of the people can SPEAK FOR THEMSELVES...as well they should.
As I say, unions have outlived their usefulness.
But, there are those that cling to the hackneyed strong-armed tactics when it comes to pay scales, artificially inflated pricing, and blue collar wages that surpass white collar professionals with years more of education in specific disciplines.
If there is one saving "grace" regarding unions THESE days, it's apprenticeship programs, but we see technical institutes in secondary education that have taken a lot of wind out of those union sails in recent history.
I feel that if a person (any person) can learn and perform a job competently, then WHY join a union? Promotions in unions are often based on SENIORITY, without regard to job performance or other work habits that may make the "lesser" employee a better bet to move up the ladder than the older employee who may be just "marking time".
Dad told me much about HIS union (some good, but mostly bad), and I paid attention. He didn't like being in a union, and said in no certain terms as to why...and I paid attention. I was in a union for a brief time (sheet metal workers) and that was a waste of my dues. I had the option of joining the FEDERAL employee union when working for the Treasury Dept, and politely declined. If I needed any representation in the future, I would get a lawyer and eliminate the "middle man".
Never needed one.
And in a more complex world, one might think unions are again relevant...well, any decent lawyer is savvy enough to figure things out. If they can get murderers off of death row, they sure as hell can represent a worker with an honest grievance, right?
It worked for US...WITHOUT unionizing!
I say discuss the ordinances as RATIONAL people...kinda like the FOUNDING FATHERS did during the Constitutional Convention (aka The Philadelphia Convention of 1787) when creating our document governing a new nation.
When the 13 representatives from the colonies got together, they were NOT in consensus in MANY ways, but at least they got together to TALK things out, look at other viewpoints and determine what would be BEST for an emerging nation and it's PEOPLE.
Here's the WIKI for the first convention if you want some back-story:
I say when such people are afraid to TALK about any issue, they have an agenda OTHER than the interest of the people they are supposed to represent.
And that's all I want to say on the subject...for now.
*** Last back to the reservoir today, is how human nature can often get in the way of human progress.
We saw some of that last evening at City Hall, and we often see and read about it daily in the news.
It occurs at EVERY level of government, too.
John Dalberg-Acton once said that "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely" That should be something every one of us takes to heart.
A city employee can shout about having to pick up used diapers or condoms and gripe about having "their pay taken away" when any AVERAGE and decent citizen (such as myself) does such things as picking up after others FOR FREE...because I give a damn about how our property looks and I want to present a venue that espouses a level of appreciation for what we have and how we obtained it.
If you're a street cleaner and you expect others to feel in like manner when you pick up another's litter, you're living a lie.
Human nature demands that some people will NEVER care about anything, save themselves...which is why we still have GHETTOS in America, one the most prosperous nations on the entire planet.
Just as there will always be people who litter (or worse), there will always be others willing to pick the trash up and do what should have been done by the uncaring among us.
That...is ALSO human nature...doing the RIGHT thing.
Therein lies the lesson for today.
Be well, make a difference to someone, and...
Stay SAFE out there, America.


ms nk rey said...

You really hit a nerve with me today. The Unions...ugh. My ex was a union rep, he helped the lowest of the low keep their jobs. For instance. A man was fired for not showing up to work, he did not show because he was in JAIL. Now he was in jail because he beat his wife so severely that she was hospitalized in ICU. The union not only bailed his sorry ass out they got his job back. I have not respected them since. I never understood how my ex could look in the mirror after that one.

Bob G. said...

It would seem like you share my feelings about this...nice to hear.

MY father was once offered a "shop steward" title, and that's the ground level union liaison between the workers an the "suits".
He couldn't say NO DAMN WAY fast enough!
And he HATED picketing, but it was better (and SAFER) than being attacked or having your car trashed (as union people like to do during "negotiations".)

Unions tend to be some of the MOST tunnel-visioned since creation. It's ALL about the union (and the workers) and many times, the "rights" they claim for the membership are not REALLY rights, but PRIVILEGES...unions tend to blur them together whenever it suits them., and that may force a company to fold, placing everyone out of work.
That's NOT effective representation (imho).

Thanks so much for stopping by today and commenting.
I so appreciate it.

Stay safe & dry down there.

John DuMond said...

Love that quote about psychology, history, and human nature. I'm going to have to remember that one.

Bob G. said...

John D.:
And you know the BEST part about everything here???

The price is RIGHT...as in FREE OF CHARGE.
('ya gotta love that, hmm?)
I won't bust on anyone who wants to borrow, use, or copy anything.

Then again, the TRUTH should always be FREE.

Thanks for swinging by today to comment.

Roll safe out there.

CWMartin said...

I think that any of us who can look at unions honestly will admit to knowing stories like your Dad's and NK's- I certainly do. But like everything else in the liberal agenda, the masses are teased with "all the great things unions do for you"... in the PAST... and use it to whip up emotional fervor in idiots (like the diaper lady, whom I heard on Pat Miller), so that they continue to be loyal and true in pissing their money into liberal coffers and never once think for themselves. Maybe we should just call them Barnum-crats- slogan, "A new one born every minute."

Bob G. said...

That's EXACTLY it...IN...THE...PAST...!

I actually saw the diaper lady on the mtg replay last night (and missed the season FINALE of Agents of SHIELD...damn it!).

I do what SHE does, only NOT in any park...I just police OUR property...GRATIS!
NO $35K a year for me.
Sure I bitch a lot about trash-tossers, but I'm not ready to join any UNION.

You're so right...people have GOT to start thinking for themselves!
(the alternative is not pretty)

Barnumcrats...LOL...I LIKE it.
But I think they're more HATCHED than "born"...if you get my drift.

Hey, thanks for taking time out to stop on by today and comment.

Stay safe (and conservative) up there.