Quick Roundup 492

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Nancy Pelosi's Idea of a Gift

From a news story about the Democrats' vow to enslave physicians and patients by the time Barack Obama delivers his State of the Union address:

[Pelosi] downplayed differences over the public option for coverage, saying the emphasis had always been on giving consumers an insurance option, not that it be public or government run.
I have just one question: Exactly how the hell is forcing me to buy insurance if I don't want it, telling me what kind to buy if I do, or making me pay for someone else's mandated insurance if she thinks I can afford to "giving" me an "insurance option?"

The Post-Human Left

Being within ten feet of a hippie any time during the last fifty years was only a whiff of things to come:
But then Copenhagen is the triumphant bleat of an inhuman world, a world in which humanity has no more meaning than a mollusk. Had the activists of the left thrown a fraction of the effort they have devoted to Global Warming into the genocide being carried out by the Sudanese regime in Darfur, countless numbers of people might have been saved. Instead the hypocritical jet setters of the left will get on their jets and into their limos, reserve entire hotel floors, gorge themselves on the finest delicacies imported from around the world at the expense of working class taxpayers--all in order to spend trillions of dollars on schemes that will do nothing to fight an imaginary problem that even the dullest of them knows doesn't exist, but that will personally enrich them and their supporters.
We'll forgive author Daniel Greenfield the small error of saying that they see humans and molluscs as perhaps being equally valuable. He's on a roll.

Their most potent political weapon against Homo sapiens is the precautionary principle, forced down our throats by the government.

Sarah Palin Cools on Global Warming

The so-called capitalist who "took on big oil" as Alaska's governor, has been exposed by a global warming alarmist as also being a false opponent of said alarmism.
Sarah Palin is such a cold-eyed skeptic about the Copenhagen summit on climate change that it's no surprise she would call on President Obama not to attend. After all, Obama might join other leaders in acknowledging that warming is a "global challenge." He might entertain "opportunities to reduce greenhouse gas emissions." He might even explore ways to "participate in carbon-trading markets."

Oh, wait. Those quotes aren't from some smug Euro-socialist manifesto. They're from an administrative order Palin signed in September 2007, as governor of Alaska, establishing a "sub-Cabinet" of top state officials to develop a strategy for dealing with climate change.
Palin is not even a Reagan, nor is she an Obama of the Right. She's Obama in drag, flouncing pom-poms to empty cheers for capitalism.

It's not so much that they're at the trough, ...

... it's that there's a trough at all.

This American Thinker article, as interesting as it appears to be, narrowly misses making that point.

So long as what passes for incisive commentary on the welfare state is focused on such things as how well government officials get compensated, we who favor full government protection of individual rights will know that we have our work cut out for us.

-- CAV


Anonymous said...

RE: Nancy Pelosi's Idea of a Gift

That last line would make an excellent Op Ed. Very succinct and very memorable. Nice work.

Mike said...

As you correctly note, and as Sallah once said to Indiana Jones, "They're digging in the wrong place!" But not only are they missing the overall point, but they're mischaracterizing the numbers they DO analyze:

From the American Thinker article:

"Paid time off for federal employees is also extremely generous. Employees with less than three years' tenure earn twelve paid days off per year. For service between three and fifteen years, workers are guaranteed eighteen days off with pay. And when an employee reaches fifteen years of service, this benefit grows to twenty-four days."

This doesn't tell the whole story, though. I am in a similar situation. As a political appointee for the State of AZ government, I accrued 21 vacation and 14 sick days per year right from day one. I can carry over 40 days (320 hours) of vacation from year to year. HOWEVER! There is no severance package if I am terminated, and I can be summarily dismissed at any time because appointees are "uncovered" (non-unionized) and serve at the pleasure of the Governor. Prudence prevents me from using much of the 200+ vacation hours I have currently saved up, because I want a cushion in case they lay off my department or something, and the vacation payout is what serves as that "severance substitute."

Meanwhile, sick time is use-it-or-lose-it, so nobody sandbags that... if we're not healthy, we call in. The result: less overall absenteeism as plaguebearers stay home instead of coming to work sick in order to sandbag sick days for later.

For the state, unionized "covered" employees can't be summarily terminated, have hearings and due process to be termed for cause, and have to be reassigned if possible before being RIFfed. But they get a third of the leave time uncovered employees get, and still no severance. So there's that tradeoff.

Compare this to the private sector, in which companies set their own vacation policies, often making a vacation or sick day a "personal day" and not being concerned with how an employee "uses" it, and paying severance where appropriate to the contract, and the picture becomes a little clearer. Government work is good in some respects but has some negative tradeoffs, even on things like compensated days where the private sector has already found a much easier and more effective way to administer them.

As for the salary disparity, I'd chalk that up to the simple prevalence of attorneys in government employ, versus the somewhat lesser number of fry cooks doing same.

Gus Van Horn said...


Thanks for the compliment.


You make an excellent point that I hadn't thought of, and it applies to other aspects of government oversight.

Conservatives get up in arms over things like that and "fix" them, not by getting the government out of business its shouldn't be in anyway, but by making more rules.

I am think (but am not completely sure) that some of the more ridiculous time tracking requirements associated with scientific grants are a direct result of conservatives being unhappy with how government funding for research has been spent.

In any event, I know what you mean about having to roll your own quasi-severance package from accumulated leave...