Wednesday, February 27, 2008

It's not a new thing

For those of you who think the issue of illegal aliens crossing the border to have their child born an American citizen, check this link to the Dick Powell Theater 1962 movie called “The Price of Tomatoes”.

The only people who think this is a new issue are the politicians, because as Upton Sinclair said, “It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it.”

Saturday, February 23, 2008

What happens to the average worker?

According to the Princeton Review a SAT score of the mid to high 500 seems to be the lower range most colleges expect. While the article takes pains to point out that the scores listed in the chart are not “cut off” scores, students with those scores are most likely to be considered.

All tests tend to have three major groupings, a small group with high scores, a large group clumped around the mean, and a group below average.

If the reports are true and education is the key to jobs and financial success in the future, what happens to the large number of people who score below the “minimums” for college admission?

Americans came to expect that most of us could find jobs that paid well enough for us to own our homes, have cars, TVs,and the rest of the possessions of modern life. Many jobs at the low end to the middle of the pay scale are disappearing as manufacturing and the associated support functions move to lower cost locations outside the US. Where do those displaced workers, and the new workers at the same level, find new jobs at similar pay rates?

This matters to you as a business because those are your customers. No job and they don’t buy and it doesn’t matter how inexpensive your product is.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Why we think politicians are nuts

CNN Money has an article which quotes Barack Obama on small business: “I will provide self-employed small business owners a $500 tax credit to offset their self-employed tax”.

Now how nuts is that, keep a tax but give a rebate! Just eliminate or reduce the tax so you don’t pay the $500 in the first place. Of course the answer is that he really doesn’t want to end the income stream, just make you feel good today. Tomorrow, when he doesn’t need your vote the tax is back.

We think the politicians are nuts because they think we don’t understand and will buy that line of nonsense.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Government wire tapping

This article about the government’s wire taping and the telephone company’s and internet provider’s liability for assisting the government.

I don’t have much problem with the government looking at my phone calls or even listing to determine that I’m not doing anything illegal. I do have a problem with them using the information gained that is embarrassing while not illegal. I also have a problem with some government employees having access and the potential for misuse.

We all saw one of then President Clinton’s staffers request confidential files about some Senators and Congressmen from the FBI. It got public and the information was not released, but how much can we trust a process with no check and balances?

What kind of use might former President Richard Nixon or his staff made of this kind of power? What is the potential for misuse by future Presidents or their staff?

Friday, February 8, 2008

An amazing lifetime

I always envied my grandfather for the changes he saw in his lifetime. From the first flight of the Wright brothers to Neil Armstrong walking on the moon.

This presidential election is just as great a leap. From segregation in the 1950 to a serious African American candidate. From the glass ceiling that limited how far in life a woman would be allowed to climb to a serious female candidate for president.

For all those pockets of racism and sexism that still exist, we as a nation are now prepared to judge our presidential candidates “by the content of their character”.

Maybe I don’t need to envy my grandfather after all.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Real recession or just press?

Bill Watkins of Seagate (the hard drive people) said in a article “I think we're going to talk ourselves into a recession (rather) than there's an actual one there. But you talk with IBM or other people in the Valley and they're not seeing world recession.”

What we’ve always know - people get up, get dressed, eat breakfast, and go to work. They still use all the same things they always did. A recession is all in the mind if people still need all the same stuff they always did.

The only people who should hurt by a recession are the people who are directly loosing money in the stock drop. Everybody else is still producing and consuming. The people hurt indirectly get caught up because the producers panic and stop making the things people still want, so they lay off and now their customers don’t have paychecks to buy with.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Job flight nonsense

I just read an article at CNN about the problems of the long term unemployed. This is not new, for those of us who’s jobs disappeared the job market has been bad for years.

It’s the newspapers that are just now recognizing what the politicians started years ago with their policies. The lost jobs are not being replaced with enough jobs at the same pay grade. It’s called the law of unintended consequences. Laws were enacted to make it cost effective to ship jobs out of the country, now pretend to be surprised that there aren’t enough jobs!

I mean pretend because all of us (workers) have seen the truth for years.