A Father smokes Marijuana while his Baby Dies in Hot Parked Car

Posted by PITHOCRATES - August 31st, 2013

Week in Review

Every time someone dies from a gunshot the left screams we have to do something to get these guns out of the hands of people.  For if people didn’t have guns no one would die.  Because it’s not people killing people with guns.  It’s the guns that are killing people.  And the people shooting the guns just happen to be there.

This is the logic on the left.  But yet when kids die in hot cars or because of the neglect of stoned parents they don’t say anything about getting rid of cars.  Or getting rid of drugs (see Hot Car Baby Death: ‘Joint-Smoking Dad’ Charged posted 8/30/2013 on Sky News).

A father has been accused of leaving his baby to suffocate in a parked car in temperatures of 100F, as he smoked cannabis in a sports bar…

It was thought Gray was distracted and forgot about the boy.

But Mr Thompson said police later came to suspect Gray was smoking cannabis with a work companion during the time his son was in the vehicle.

Outside temperatures were about 100 degrees, but interior car temperatures are frequently much higher.

Parents sometimes forget about a child in the back seat of a car.  Usually when there is a change in routine.  People soon forget in their busy life that today they have the child.  Then accidents happen.  And the Democrats are to blame.

The cost of the welfare state has made it hard for a single income to raise a family.  Which is why children are spending so much time in cars.  Getting shuttled between childcare and home.  Like laundry going to and from the cleaners.  Just another chore to tend to.  Because taxes are so high today that a parent can’t stay at home to raise their children.  They have to get back to work as soon as they can.

And it’s been the Democrats who have been for the decriminalization of marijuana.  For two reasons.  A lot the hippies from the Sixties who spent their time then getting high still like to light up to get high.  When they’re not busy writing the curriculum for our children’s schools.  And it’s a great way to get the youth vote.  By being everything a kid’s parents are not.  Sure, kid, sex and getting high are okay.  You vote for us and we’ll make sex and drugs a simpler part of your life.  But how many frizzled parents do we want out there getting high when they drive?  With their child in the back seat?  No.  Nothing good can come from making it easier to drive and smoke marijuana.

If it saves just one child then it’s worth doing.  That’s what they say about restrictions on gun ownership.  And if it’s good for guns than it must be good for marijuana.  It needs to be banned.  For the children.

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The Cost of Higher Education rose Twice as Much as Health Care Costs

Posted by PITHOCRATES - August 31st, 2013

Week in Review

It’s bad enough that higher education is programming our kids to become good liberals.  But their getting rich in the process is just rubbing salt into the wound (see College Costs Surge 500% in U.S. Since 1985: Chart of the Day by Michelle Jamrisko & Ilan Kolet posted 8/26/2013 on Bloomberg).

The cost of higher education has surged more than 500 percent since 1985, illustrating why there have been renewed calls for change from both political parties.

The CHART OF THE DAY shows that tuition expenses have increased 538 percent in the 28-year period, compared with a 286 percent jump in medical costs and a 121 percent gain in the consumer price index. The ballooning charges have generated swelling demand for educational loans while threatening to make college unaffordable for domestic and international students.

What expenses does a college have?  There are shelters (i.e., buildings) where students sit and learn.  But shelter costs rose nowhere near the amount going to college did.  So it’s not the buildings.  So what else do colleges have?  That tuition pays for?  Excluding books and living expenses that are above and beyond tuition expenses?  Well, the only other thing they really have are people.

College administrators and college professors.  If the high tuition costs are not due the costs of the buildings on the college campus then we must be paying the people too much.  In pay and benefits.  So let’s crunch some numbers.

The average annual cost for a 4-year public college is about $18,000 (see The Average Cost of a U.S. College Education posted 8/24/2010 in US News and World Repot).  Based on a typical enrollment of 40,000 students that comes to an annual college revenue of $720,000,000.  If the college has $1.5 billion in debt on its books for capital improvements on average at 6% that comes to an annual interest expense of $90 million.  Let’s assume they retire $50 million in debt every year.  And their operating costs (everything else but pay and benefits for administrators and professors) are, say, $25 million.  Subtracting all this from the annual tuition revenue leaves $555 million for pay and benefits each year.  Assuming a professor/administrator for each 20 students that gives us 900 professors/administrators.  Dividing this into that $555 million gives us about $617,000 per professor/administrator annually.

This is just a rough estimate but it does give you an idea about the amount of money we’re talking about here.  Not all professors are making $617,000 but if you’re tenured you’re living well.  Very well.  And administrators typically live far better than tenured professors.  This is what students are going in debt for.  To give a privileged few a life others can only dream about.  Worse, a lot of these students who graduate have an unmarketable degree.  In an economy where employers are looking for people with math and science skills people with degrees in romantic languages or gender studies will not fare well.  But the people who sold them those degrees will be doing very well.  This is why we have a student loan debt problem.  Students took on enormous debt for a degree they can’t use.

Everyone loves to complain about the high cost of health care.  And demand that government do something about it.  Well, they did.  They gave us Obamacare.  Which promises to squeeze hospitals and doctors.  To make them do more for less.  Obamacare is so bad that it is causing some doctors to retire early.  Just so they don’t have to deal with it.  Yet the cost of college has gone up at twice the rate of health care costs.  But where is the outcry over that?  Where are the people demanding that government do something?   To squeeze those universities, professors and administrators?  Why should they get rich at providing education.  If doctors shouldn’t get rich saving lives why should educators be allowed to get rich selling unmarketable degrees?  Just why is it educators can get away with being the greediest of the greedy and escape government scrutiny?

Because they teach their students to be good liberals, that’s why.  And this is so valuable to Democrats that they are willing to raise the taxes on their constituents as much as it takes.  Because without the programming higher education provides few would vote Democrat.

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Redwoods and Sequoias love Global Warming

Posted by PITHOCRATES - August 31st, 2013

Week in Review

Trees love carbon dioxide.  They breathe it in.  And exhale oxygen.  Allowing us to breathe.  The more carbon dioxide they breathe the more oxygen we get.  The happier the trees are.  And the happier we are.  So this is no surprise (see Redwoods and sequoias thrive despite climate change posted 8/26/2013 on CBS News).

A four-year study by the Save the Redwoods League called “the Redwoods and Climate Change Initiative” found that due to changing environmental conditions, California’s coastal redwoods and giant sequoias are experiencing an unprecedented growth surge and have produced more wood over the past century than any other time in their lives.

Imagine that.  Man made the trees grow faster.  And here the global warming alarmists were wringing their hands over the deforestation of the rain forest.  When there is nothing to worry about.  For we are planting trees.  And now we know we can make those trees grow faster.  All we have to do is burn more fossil fuels.

The global warming alarmists can rest easy tonight.  For man’s carbon footprint isn’t killing the planet.  It’s making it grow like a son of a bitch.

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Chelsea Manning wants the Government he Betrayed to pay for her Hormone Therapy

Posted by PITHOCRATES - August 31st, 2013

Week in Review

Monty Python’s Life of Brian is a hilarious movie.  If you don’t own it buy it for your permanent collection.  When it came out it was blasphemous.  Religious groups hated and condemned it.  Which only made it more popular.  But who’s laughing now?  Probably not the left.  At least over this scene:

Funny, yes?  You want to laugh, yes?  But do you?  Can you?  Should you?

Bradley Manning’s recent conversion to Chelsea Manning makes this classic scene a bit impropriate these days.  Funny how time changes things.  First the left loved this movie.  As well as every man on the planet.  Except those with delicate religious sensitivities.  But today the left may have trouble laughing about poor Loretta and his struggle against reality (see The Fight for Trans Rights in the Military by Molly Knefel posted 8/26/2013 on the Rolling Stone).

In a statement released on August 22nd, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) argued that denying Manning access to hormone therapy – considered medically necessary care for the treatment of gender dysphoria – could be a violation of her Eighth Amendment rights protecting her from cruel and unusual punishment.

No, it isn’t.  If Manning was not imprisoned or in the military Manning would still not be getting treatment for gender dysphoria.  Would a free person unable to afford hormone therapy/gender reassignment surgery be inflicting cruel and unusual punishment on him or herself?  If so who would they sue?  A child dying from cancer is pretty cruel and unusual.  Should we be suing someone for that, too?

One trans* service member, a second-year medical student with a full scholarship from the U.S. Navy, feels that the DADT victory was incomplete. “I’m literally the same exact person I was before, the same feelings, experiences, abilities,” says Jai, who identifies as non-gendered and prefers gender-neutral pronouns, and plans to begin taking testosterone in September. “The only thing that has changed is the words that describe me, but now I’m deemed unfit for service…”

As a medical student, Jai feels especially astounded by the discrimination trans* people face when it comes to accessing necessary health care. “It’s comparable to a person with type II diabetes or hypothyroidism not having their medication covered,” Jai says. Jai, whose father was a career military serviceman, saw the Navy as an opportunity to go to medical school and serve a population that needed care. Now, they’re hoping to avoid being discharged until figuring out another way to pay for school.

People join the Air Force for free pilot lessons so they can get an airline job after their EAD.  Because it’s free.  And airlines like hiring former military pilots.  Medical school is costly, too.  But it’s free if you have a military scholarship.  Of course, because it is so costly the government makes your EAD 5 years instead of 4 (this was the way it used to be but things may be different today).  Making you serve as a military doctor for at least one more year before leaving the service for a more lucrative career in private medicine.

Back before the Gulf War this was a pretty cheap way to get a quality education.  It’s a little more risky these days.  As there are more shooting wars than before.  But some still do this.  And some serve in combat zones.  Earning every dime of Uncle Sam’s investment.  But the military is different than ordinary life.  It trains killers.  Who are expected to go out and kill without remorse.  And all of this attention to sexual orientation and gender issues distracts from the mission.  As we are discussing the poor feelings of someone in prison who for all intents and purposes committed treason instead of the harm to national security he did.  Which endangered our military people.  As well as create more anti-American hostility.

The military is not a place for social experimentation.  We have the greatest fighting force in the world.  Nay, in history.  We get great peace with that strength.  Because our enemies know that we can unleash lethal killing force anywhere our enemies may be.  This is what we want our enemies to be preoccupied with.  Trying to avoid the wrath of America’s military might.  Not the soap opera about the cruel and unusual punishment we’re inflicting on a prisoner because we’re not footing the bill for this prisoner’s sex change.

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Men tend to get Paid More than Women because of the High Cost of Maternity Leave

Posted by PITHOCRATES - August 31st, 2013

Week in Review

There was a movie in 1985 called Head Office.  It lampooned corporate America.  In it there was this one character who was dying from heart disease or something.  But he refused to take time off from work.  Because if he did someone else would get his job.  He’d rather take a chance on dying than risk losing his job.  Because the corporate world was that cutthroat.  There was always someone waiting in the wings to take your job.  Which is why you never wanted to miss work.  Because if someone else did your job for you when you were away and they did it better than you they might just keep your job.  Leaving you to start your corporate career all over again.  And often with less pay and fewer benefits.

That’s the way it used to be.  Today, it’s a bit different.  Especially if you’re a woman (see As a boss, maternity leave is a nightmare for employers by Josephine Fairley posted 8/28/2013 on The Telegraph).

There’s no denying, of course, that for companies – especially really small companies – maternity leave presents challenges. Suddenly, a key team member isn’t there. And even more challengingly, there’s no way to know if she’s coming back – which makes it hard to plan for the future…

Right now, it isn’t legal to ask a pregnant woman whether she’s even thinking of coming back to work. There’s no imperative for her proactively to tell you proactively – never mind before the birth, but right up to the time that the 52 weeks of maternity leave are up. And my observation is that’s partly what makes it so hard to plan, and accommodate, a woman who’s on maternity leave…

I know several women who’ve returned to work after a few months, never mind a year of maternity leave, feeling like they’d landed on Mars because so much had changed while they were away.

52 weeks of maternity leave?  And they don’t have to say whether they’re coming back to work?  The boss can come in one day and find a key employee will leave for an extended absence in 6 months time?  And not know if she will ever return to work?

So they have to hire someone temporarily.  Who they will have to let go if she comes back from maternity leave.  Even if this temporary person turns out to be better in that position.  So a person that they hired and trained so well that they are better than the person they filled in for must lose his or her job.  Someone who may have taken that position because they didn’t expect that person to return from maternity leave.  And because it was the best job available at the time they took that chance.  Only to find the year they invested there was a year out of their life that they could have spent somewhere else.  Building a career where their hard work was rewarded.  Then spend time and resources training the woman returning from maternity leave.  So she can understand all the changes that happened in her absence.

This is why men tend to get paid more when they compare salaries.  First of all, with a lot of women taking maternity leave it does bring down the women’s average income when they take a year or two of income earning years out of their career.  And secondly, who do you think an employer will want to hire?  Someone that they have to accommodate for up to a year in maternity leave?  Or someone that isn’t going to walk in and say “I’m going to have a baby in 6 months”?  If they are working on a 2 year project they don’t want to worry about a key team member leaving in the middle of it.  It may be unfair.  But men can’t get pregnant.  They can do a lot of stupid things to ruin a big project just as women can.  But women have that one other variable.  That a business owner can’t have a contingency for.  What are they going to do?  Have two people doing the job of one in case one of them goes on maternity leave?  What if it’s two women and they go on maternity leave at the same time?  Do you have to make sure that one of the two people doing the job of one person is a man?  So he will always be available if the woman goes on maternity leave?  Of course, you know where that will take you.  Why not just hire a man and have one person do the job of one person?  And remove the need for any contingency in the first place?

Business owners hate uncertainty.  Pregnancy creates uncertainty.  This isn’t a man versus a woman issue.  A battle of the sexes.  For women own businesses, too.  And hate uncertainty just as any other business owner.  Some may make a stand for women in the workplace.  Hire women into key positions then deal with their maternity leave.  But they, too, would probably prefer hiring a man in some key positions.  So they can just worry about the usual things.  Like losing a key employee who leaves for a better paying job.  Of course if they do they at least can immediately start interviewing a replacement.  Without waiting 52 weeks.

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