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10 January 2012

Comments

Russ Steele

The question now is who are the lefties that are going to run against LaMalfa. I hear that the left in Washington is already ginning up opposition from the national level. Cannot have any more conservatives in Washington.

Gregory

"have you noticed that someone from the state’s leftwing leadership has told the local loonies to cool it."

No I haven't. Did they listen?

Russ Steele

Gregory,

Where is Steven Frisch? He has vanished from the local blogs? He was a major supporter of AB-32 and opponent of Prop 23.

Douglas Keachie

Well, I did learn one or two things thing. My favorite waitress has been there for almost 50 years. "Shirley Tellam" and the owners are very much on the floor. Great institution!

billy T

Doug, Shirley is great. She was the the first thing I thought about when I heard about the fire. In other California news: http://www.businessweek.com/news/2012-01-11/california-s-top-earners-dwindle-as-brown-counts-on-higher-taxes.html

Douglas Keachie

"My labor was valuable because it was affordable."

And the capitalists who banded together together to get the cheapest possible labor to get the job done, by making sure there were no unions, among other things in the legislatures, did a good job of insuring getting your labor at the lowest possible price. Of course we would never call them bullies for doing so, or notice that they do exactly the same thing unions do in reverse. Why, well you tell me what makes the capitalists moral and the unions an abomination in the face of God? Not that the same capitalist then band together to get the highest possible price in the marketplace that they can, legally. Why shouldn't workers band together to get the highest possible price for their labors?

Douglas Keachie

What percentage of Americans live in right to work states? What is combined GDP of the right to work states? Per capita, which are more productive, the RTWS or the Union states? I rather think the people have spoken.

Douglas Keachie

"Californians with earnings of more than $1 million are subject to a surcharge to fund mental health services that brings their present rate to 10.3 percent."

This makes sense. The selfish actions of the .1% are driving everybody else crazy. I not the article came up with numerous reasons, beyond tax rates, for the decline in top earners, and without hard numbers for all theories, it's really pretty hard to assign blame to one cause.

Douglas Keachie

"Note" not "not."

George Rebane

DougK 836&842am - Capitalists "banding together" as you characterize is illegal, and more than a few capitalists have gone to jail for things like price-fixing. Any evidence that you have of such 'bandings' should be presented to the nearest district attorney for prosecution.

RTWS productivity has to be carefully computed so as to leave out the non-unionized high revenue service industries concentrated in large metropolitan areas. Other than that, the forced-union states take a bath on productivity. No capitalist seeking profit would voluntarily locate in right-to-work states if their productivity were low. Low productivity equal low profits.

And yes, my employers hired an affordable George for the same reason that I buy an affordable toaster. I pay no more than I absolutely have to.

There's no problem with workers unionizing into a cohort as long as they are willing to compete with workers who choose not to do so. In short, let the employer fire his union workers when he feels he's not getting the best deal on labor. But that is not the case - the dismissed union workers would burn down the factory. They violently demand to sell low productivity labor.

George Rebane

DougK - I note that you're the only one who breaks his comment into multiple smaller pieces and posts those individually. Is there a specific reason you like to do this?

Douglas Keachie

Capitalist banding together to form a single corporation is not at all illegal. Corporations owning corporations owning corporations to the point where everyone loses track is not illegal either. Try this one from Steve Willer on for size:

"I wonder how many kids in the 60s and 70s thought about the fact Twinkies was owned by Continental Baking, which was owned by ITT, which during WWII owned a subsidiary company in Germany that owned 25% of the Focke-Wulf company which made fighter aircraft for the Luftwaffe. In the 60s, ITT received a $27 million compensation for damages to its subsidiary companies aircraft plants in Germany from Allied bombing. Unbelievable!

But that is all so forty years ago type of stuff……… isn’t it? Corporations wouldn’t do things to hurt America, “corporations are people my friends”"

Douglas Keachie

I like to address one issue at a time. I note that in Ruminations you take a shotgun approach and go for every item on the menu. Just a difference in styles.

Account Deleted

Re: Doug's humor from the left daily - 'Corporations owning corporations owning corporations to the point where everyone loses track is not illegal either.' So who's lost track, Doug? How did you figure all of this secret stuff out? Oh, and I've got some some other secret info that 'they' don't want you to know. Come closer and I'll whisper it - you don't have to buy Twinkies, Doug. Or anything else from the evil empire. If you don't like working for some one, then don't. It's called freedom - something the unions don't allow.

Douglas Keachie

It's called freedom, Don't join a union if you don't want to, Move to a right to work state and get the best salary you can negotiate. that's obviously going to be a better deal than a union can get for you. After all, the guy who set up the job did it all for YOU, and will make sure you are better compensated than he is, and I've got as bridge only 75 years old I'll sell you. Good luck, don't let Tahoe and the Pacific Ocean wee on you as you go out.

Douglas Keachie

Possible source for Willer's assertions: http://www.telcomhistory.org/vm/historiesITT.shtml

Gregory

Guys, don't expect a guy who spent his life in competence-optional gov't jobs in Baghdad by the Bay to have a clue about markets, labor or otherwise.

Account Deleted

OK - Dougie - We'll start a right wing organization in Nevada County and you have to either join or pay dues. And a lot of that goes to the TP. You have the freedom to move or pay. You down with that home boy? You are flippin' nuts. We have something called freedom of association in this country and I shouldn't have to pay any organization a dime because of what I freely choose to do for a living, or where I live. (OK, there are gated communities, but that is a freely chosen path by the home owner). Your appeasement of the unions is pathetic. If you ever had to pay one red cent to a conservative organization, you would scream bloody murder. Typical lib hypocrite. And will you answer the question about the giberish you posted above about corps that no one can follow? We can have some back and forth here, but you just post nonsense and then refuse to back up what you post. Who are the corps that no one can follow? Can you name them? Any of them?

George Rebane

DougK 104pm - I notice that the topic suddenly shifted from forced union membership to how to get a higher salary. And I do understand that it's hard to defend forced memberships in any organization ranging from a union to a sole source health insurance company.

But let's not continue in confusion. For 'commodity level' jobs, no one has proposed that a non-union worker can negotiate a better compensation package than a union representing an entire workforce for the employer. And that is exactly the point - both workers perform the same job with the union worker getting paid more; ergo the union worker is less productive (same output for more cost).

Douglas Keachie

I will para-quote Stan Freberg from his history of the USA.

Columbus: "What do you mean, 'You discovered us?'"

Indian: "We discover you on beach here. It is all how you look at it."

And George, you are so entrenched in the notion of running an efficient business that you are unable to see that from the workers point of viewm, a job that gives more money for the same amount of work, is a more efficient use of the workers time.

You have to see it from the workers point of view. God does NOT favor one side or the other.

Greg, The is no union that says you have to live anywhere, so your argument is spurious. As far as tracking the mechanations of corps and interlocking directorships, and the right hand feeding the left in one giant circle, please note that BofA chose a Sacto realty firm to handle the sale of the Nevada City branch building. 5 will get you 10 that the Sacto firm is either owned by BofA or otherwise has close ties to BofA. I knew a guy who had a steel fab plant in the South Bay, and he secretly arranged to buy up a major steel supplier in the area. He thus knew exactly who else was bidding on various jobs, and controlled the prices they paid for materials, which in turn affected their bids. It was a piece of cake for him to underbid on as many jobs as he liked, but he was discrete, overbid on some, so he wouldn't get caught. This kind of stuff goes on all the time, and it is what I am referring to.

George Rebane

DougK 345pm - an interesting perspective indeed on the definition of productivity. However, it is one that even Stalin did not accept. I'm afraid that we are talking about the worker selling labor, and the employer buying that labor, and then the client buying from the employer the product or service provided. In that equation, accepted worldwide, we have

Productivity = (product or service provided)/(cost, i.e. wages).

You are making the astonishing argument (that doesn't even work for communists) that productivity is relative, and it should instead be computed as

Productivity = (cost, i.e. wages)/(product or service provided)

Douglas Keachie

And you are making the argument that the employer is free to harvest as much as possible for his product in the free market, and the laborer get the tiniest amount possible. in a slave market, where the slaves have no say, other than individual pitiful cries. Giving a free market to select individual who own companies, and denying a free market to others, to manipulate the market for their labor as best they can, is un-American.

What has happened, of course, is that the capitalists have taken their jobs abroad, and then sold goods here to the maxxed out credit cards of the workers, and their inheritances, and now the turkey vultures are coming home to feast. Most ironic is the huge quantity of schlock Chinese household junk that is tossed in the dumpsters outside of foreclosed homes. At some point those with student loans will default en masse, when they cannot find the employment to even feed themselves. Ad in The Union yesterday for an English major for $15/hour to do a job that does require an English major with good computer skills. One of them may get it, and even that person will wind up defaulting. When minimum wage is nearly 10 per hour, that is real inspiring to kids to succeed in school. Engineering isn't much better, since that can be outsourced to India as well.

Gregory

George, I recall an eastern European, Warsaw Pact worker saying "We pretend we work and they pretend they pay us".

Unions are ok by me, even union shops. Just not for public employees.

Douglas Keachie

Somebody just said: "We have something called freedom of association in this country" and then went on to say that a person who works for the government is to be denied those rights, "Unions are ok by me, even union shops. Just not for public employees."

Douglas Keachie

Basically, the Right, having reorganized a great many pension funds to just barely make their commitments in the future, maybe, now moves on to see what they can harvest from the public pension funds, the Final Frontier, by dismantling contracts between two parties, willingly enbtered into by both. I've heard the right rail against the banks being asked to reschedule loans, changing the contracts, but not a peep from the right on this issue with public pensions. In fact, just the opposite is happening, with the Right leading the charge to destroy said supposedly holy holy contracts. Hypocrites!

Gregory

Bad unions can drive companies out of business. Bad public employee unions with collective bargaining for pay and benefits are driving the state of California off a cliff, if effect holding the people hostage.

Not to mention running Education into the ground.

George Rebane

Gregory 510pm - That slogan has been part and parcel of the workers' paradise credo since before WW2. My cousin visiting me from the USSR in 1988 reinforced that as he described the employment situation over his life time. It is the back to the future for a world for which Mr Keachie is beating the drums.

DougK 544pm - Golly, I hope that you continue your line of argument here. No one is against freedom of association in these pages. But different people have different ideas of what such an association should be able to do. In the case of public service unions, FDR's letter spelled out the evils and they have been spot on for over 75 years.

BTW, it is most illuminating to note that the small uptick that's happening in manufacturing is happening ONLY in the right-to-work states. And the current SCOTUS case on union overreach into workers' rights should be even more illuminating, especially as it involves the California workers as plaintiffs.

billy T

Gentlemen, start your engines. Noticed Hostess is filing for bankruptcy (Chapter 11) again. Seems there are 5 big players in the twinkie market, only one is unionized. I will give you 3 guesses. Hint, it is the one that is unionized. I personally don't eat Twinkies. Leaves a sour taste in my mouth. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204257504577154402317896574.html

billy T

More Scattershots: Now tell me once again how the Occufree crowd is similar to the Taxed Enough Already crowd. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/crime-scene/post/child-cruelty-charge-after-baby-found-alone-in-occupy-camp/2012/01/11/gIQAkPBIrP_blog.html

Douglas Keachie

"Bad greedy shareholders who want every crumb can drive companies out of business. Bad corporations with tax reduction ahead of thoughts of job creation, such as Chevron's opposition to a severance tax, are driving the state of California off a cliff, if effect holding the people hostage, to pay income and sales taxes to make up for the shortfall, while Chevron makes record profits.

Not to mention their complete destruction of trades courses in high and middle schools across the state, through their constant drum drum against teachers, when in fact the quality of the home life, which is in part determined by the wages offered to the bulk of the citizens of the state, and the quality of the television shows they watch, has much more to do with the success of kids in school than the teachers. Put the right kids in with the worst of all teachers, at least according to Greg, and they STILL turn out OK. Put really screwed up kids in with the very best teachers who try their very best, and you still don't get those results. Blaming the teachers is like blaming your mechanic for the car that breaks down, 98% of the time.

It wouldn't be a Keachpost if I didn't segway to a most unlikely topic, in this case a rather amazing NOVA presentation this evening,, which was obviously very costly to make, and ran for two hours not one, that involved a prof from England recreating the experiments that led up to the raid on the biggest German dam in mid 1943, designed by Wallis. Fascinating to watch, using a DC4 for multiple flights, building a dam that would have required building permits up the yinyang in NevCo, a building of, and experimenting with numerous 55 gallon sized prototypes and finally a real bomb. It was cool, but who paid for all this? Us viewers? Nope, the best surprise they saved for last....the Koch Brothers!

Douglas Keachie

Bankruptcies and good accountants make the resulting brew of record profits in holdings elsewhere grow into more money than the sum of the parts, at least for the elite shareholders who control the directions the companies take. What does the bankruptcy do to effect the restructuring of the once safe pensions? The murder mystery continues next week.

Douglas Keachie

It is high time that a teacher be allowed to set up multiple cameras and mics in his or her classroom, to squash any students who would like to engage in cyberbaiting, and to shut up, once and for all, parents who claim their little Johnny or Susie would NEVER do what the teacher claims they did. Modern surveillance software and wireless nanocams and an on teacher mic would set up a room for less than a grand, and i 'll bet many teachers would consider it a great form of insurance.

http://www.takepart.com/article/2011/12/07/cyberbaiting-teens-find-high-tech-ways-humiliate-teachers

What ciost education the most is the enabling by the parents and administrators of the favorite pastime of a sizable portions of the students. That pasttime is best described as, "chewing up the clock." The less that is presented to and learned by the better students, the easier the resulting tests will have to be, and cyberbaiting is FUN!.

Douglas Keachie

The Truth certainly shuts down the other side.

Douglas Keachie

Parents and voters have to decide. Do they want to send their kids to school to use teachers as chewy toys, or do they want their kids in an environment where they can actually learn something? A teacher is often caught in the middle, with half the kids complaining he/she isn't teaching, while the other half the kids keep him or her from teaching. This is brought about by administrators and parents doubting the word of the teacher over the students, and the students knowing this to be the case. Just as cops have the right to red light cameras, so should teachers have the same rights, for the same reason. Deterrence!

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