Monday, September 14, 2009

Washington D.C. Got Rocked Saturday! [Updates]

Another great video has been created to illustrate the fact that there were HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS - wait...no... 1.5 TO 2 MILLION PATRIOTS (others estimate 1.2 MILLION) who decended upon Washington D.C. yesterday to express that they feel the same way that I do about the current tyrannical, corrupt, lousy, tax and spend, communist, unconstitutional czar-filled, LYING government rule that ObamaFRAUD has unleashed upon our country. We are MAD and we are NOT GOING TO TAKE IT ANYMORE! This is just the beginning! Look out liberal left Marxists - WE WILL VOTE YOU OUT OF OFFICE IN 2010!!

Video link

Hat Tips:

THE FIRST AMENDMENT, NOT POLITICALLY CORRECT II : CAN YOU HEAR US NOW?

Nice Deb (video)

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P.S. To the patriots we met at the Temecula TEA Party - I will post the photos and video as soon as I get them! Has been a busy weekend!

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UPDATE:

See this time lapse video of the event!

Time Lapse Video link

This too:

Nice Deb: Nutroots Really in Denial About Massive 9.12 March in D.C.

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UPDATE:

OH MY GOSH!!! Take a day off from blogging (had company yesterday - wonderful time!!) and I now see how much detail I missed!

Take a look at this post!

Gateway Pundit: Clean Conservatives vs. Filthy Liberals

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UPDATE:

This is ABSOLUTELY PRICELESS!!!

Nice Deb: Pro-Obamacare Forces Held Their Own Rally in DC on 9/13

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UPDATE:

See the entire C-Span coverage of the event C-Span: FreedomWorks Rally in D.C.

20 comments:

Christinewjc said...

Talk Wisdom blog listed at Yahoo.com News again!

Yahoo News

Look at "Most Blogged - Politics" and click on "blogs about this story under CLEAN Conservatives vs FILTHY Liberals-- A Photographic Essay Gateway Pundit – Sun Sep 13, 4:34 pm EDT

Blogs About This Story (31) Beckians Fight Litter and Liberals

Conservative Woodstock Rocks the Capitol

David Axelrod Loses ALL Touch With Reality

Filthy Liberals

Washington D.C. Got Rocked Saturday! [Talk Wisdom's blog post!]

26 - 30 of 31Prev Next

Kevin said...

Hi Christine,
So what kind of government do you want? You seem to prefer the old Bush leadership--the exact 'leadership' that got us all into this financial mess (it was about a year ago when Lehman Brother's failed--under the Bush administration). I take it that you would have preferred McCain? What do you think he would have done differently?
I'm also wondering what is 'tyrannical' and 'tax and spend' and 'communist' about the current administration? My taxes haven't gone up (my state tax has, like yours, under the Republican Schwarzenneger). President Obama inherited this gigantic financial mess from President Bush. He also inherited the war in Iraq and Afghanistan (including the billions and billions that are being/have been spent there--which could have given health care to poor American children that don't have it because Bush decided Iraq has an easy pushover). So where do you think the blame should be?

I also don't see any mass movement by the government to take over private land--which is what Communist governments have done. So I'm not sure what is so 'communistic' about the current administration.

Christinewjc said...

Kevin,

You must not visit this blog on a regular basis because if you did you would already know my position about "what kind of government" I want.

As Franklin once quipped, "We have given you a republic - if you can keep it."

I am a supporter of what our Founding Fathers gave us - a Constitutional Republic.

The financial mess (specifically, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac) was due to community organizers (like that corrupt organization from whence Obama came from - ACORN) and politicians (like Barney Frank, Chris Dodd, Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi etc.)that pressured Congress to allow high risk loans to people who could not afford them and thus could not pay the mortgages.

The financial meltdown happened at too convenient of a time - right before the 2008 election. McCain was in the lead in all the polls. It was the Cloward-Piven, Alinsky Rules for Radicals methods along with Soro's billions that tried to collapse our financial system - in order to generate anger towards the former Republican administration and thus get Obama elected. Are you familiar with Soros? Just type his name into my blog search and you will see all that I have written (and many great links) about this evil man.

Kevin - you are a college professor - no? If you don't recognize the Socialist (a.k.a. Communist/Marxist) policies that Obama is putting in place then please read a few history books.

Christinewjc said...

Link to more photos that the Media of Mass Deception won't show:

RepubX: DC TEA Party Pictures Not Seen on National News

Gary Baker said...

Hi Kevin,

It also seems that you haven't been paying much attention to the news lately, or have been paying attention to MSNBC, CBS, ABC, NBC, and CNS, which amounts to the same thing. In an answer to some of your questions:

Tax and spend - Well, there has certainly been no shortage of the "spend" aspect of the current administration, raising debt commitments at a pace which far outstrips the Bush years (which were also marked by overspending). BTW - The note about billions which could have been spent for health care for poor American children is an argument somewhere between weak and non-existent. The Clinton administration was in a far better position to do something in that regard and did nothing. They made the same mistake that the current administration is making - They had enough political power the first couple of years to affect some change during the first year, but that wasn't good enough for them. They had to try to destroy everything and remake it in their own image. The problem with that is that people eventually see the image and know that it's pretty ugly. Moving right along...

Despite the increase in debt which is accruing, no one in the administration is giving any serious considerations to cutting services or actions which would improve the economy. They are all about raising taxes. They say that it will be on the wealthy, and they lie. The wealthy don't have enough to do what the administration wants done.

While it's true that Obama inherited wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, it's also true that Bush inherited an escalating terrorism problem and a major blow to the economy through 9/11, as well as the onset of recession coming at the end of the Clinton years. One year afterward, thanks to tax cuts, tax revenues were up above their pre-9/11 values. I doubt that Obama will fare as well since he is too committed to unions and other organizations which exist to slow the economy at the expense of productive people.

You can blame Arnold for your state taxes if you like, but that kind of puts you in a bind, now doesn't it? Libs are always saying that the problem is that the Republicans don't raise taxes enough. California has raised taxes, yet the hole they are in is still incredibly deep. Could it be because they constantly cater to unions, illegals, and ridiculous levels of benefits and services? Interesting how the states with the highest debt levels also tend to be the states with the highest tax rates.

I would probably agree with you that the current administration has not been acting strictly "Communist." A better descriptor would be "fascist" since they generally don't take full possession of the property. They simply control a ridiculous level of how business is accomplished. Change "Brown Shirts" to "Purple Shirts" and the fit is just about exact. I hope these nuggets have helped you catch up on the news.

Kevin said...

Hi Christine,
I guess I wanted a specific answer about what kind of government you wanted (yes, I already knew part of the answer but you keep going on and on about Commie/Marxist/socialist this-and-that so it is hard for me to tell what exactly you want). Social Security (which your parents or your husband's parents are probably on) is something that benefits all of us, even if we aren't of that specific age. We all contribute to it, even though we may not be using it. Do you have a problem with Social Security? Will you reject it when you come of age? Would you like it to be dissolved? How about the Veteran's medical program? Are you against that? It is a medical program run by the government, which we all pay for and only some will benefit (and I am certainly not against veterans getting their due for all the work they do for this country). Education is the same--we all pay for it, but not everyone benefits or gets to use it.
Yes, I am a college professor, but no, I don't recognize the Marxist/Communist things you see in the current administration. If you can recommend some history books that would shed some light on this for me, I would be happy to take a look at them.


Hi Gary, I do agree with most of what you are saying. There are always two sides to every coin. I am a Democrat, and proud to be one. I have trouble seeing some of the things the Republicans want to do. I sometimes have trouble seeing some of the things Democrats want to do as well. However, I survived the Bush administration despite my dislike for him and what he wanted to do and what he did do. I survived the fact that he did not win the popular vote. I think that you and Christine will survive President Obama just as well as I did. This is the nature of politics. We aren't the first generation to dislike each other's party.
Saying that, there is no question in my mind that if we had not have spent (and still are spending) billions and billions on Iraq, those billions and billions could have been put to better use. For example, health care, or education. Pointless war only benefits a few in a society--usually those at the top and the defense industry.

Which serices that the government provides now do you think need to be cut, which will then improve the economy? I would really like to know.

I'm not sure I buy your line about liberals always complaining that Republicans don't raise enough taxes. I think the problem here in California is that ALL Republicans refused to raise tax by once cent, even though the fall of the housing market gutted the budget. You have to get money from somewhere. Of course, politicians in California (on both sides of the isle) pretend that fees are not taxes...

As to the supposed fascist characteristics of the present administration, I was wondering if you could give me a short list of what the Obama administration is doing that is specifically Marxist.

Christinewjc said...

Kevin,

Let me put it this way. I will tell you exactly what I DON'T WANT.

I don't want socialist policies of health care.

I don't want excessive taxation.

I don't want tax payer money going to corrupt groups like ACORN.

I don't want our tax payer money going for bailouts for banks, (350 million is unaccounted for??!!!) government run car companies, wasteful stimulus money going to thousands of earmarked projects (that DON'T create jobs - because the private sector business owners do that best)

I don't want indoctrination.

I don't want unelected, unconstitutional czars advising the "president."

I don't want cronyism.

I don't want corruption.

I don't want the Alinsky Rules for Radicals used against the American people.

I don't want the Cloward-Piven methodology of manufactured crisis to prevail or continue.

I don't want every protester being called "racist" because they don't agree with Obama's policies.

Now I will tell you what I do want.

I want Obama to come clean on the citizenship issue. The American people have a right to know whether or not he is a Natural Born Citizen of the United States of America. According to the Constitution - if he isn't - then he is not eligible for POTUS and needs to be removed.

I want Obama to answer these questions:

Mr. Barack Hussein Obama -

The American People want to know, who sent you?


Obama has lived for 48 years without leaving any footprints -- none! There is no
Obama documentation -- no records -- no paper trail -- none -- this can't be an
accident.

Original, vault copy birth certificate -- Not released

Certificate of Live Birth -- Released -- Counterfeit

Obama/Dunham marriage license -- Not released

Soetoro/Dunham marriage license -- Not released

Soetoro adoption records -- Not released

Fransiskus Assisi School School application -- Released

Punahou School records -- Not released

Selective Service Registration -- Released -- Counterfeit

Occidental College records -- Not released

Passport (Pakistan) -- Not released

Columbia College records -- Not released

Columbia thesis -- Not released

Harvard College records -- Not released

Harvard Law Review articles -- None (maybe 1, unsigned?)

Baptism certificate -- None

Medical records -- Not released

Illinois State Senate records -- None

Illinois State Senate schedule -- Lost

Law practice client list -- Not released

University of Chicago scholarly articles -- None

(continued next comment)

Christinewjc said...

As I have mentioned many times before (in fact, it is included in my sidebar) on this blog here is the relevant question:

THE RELEVANT OBAMA ADMISSION
At Barack Obama’s web site, the following admission:

“FactCheck.org Clarifies Barack’s Citizenship

‘When Barack Obama Jr. was born on Aug. 4,1961, in Honolulu, Kenya was a British colony, still part of the United Kingdom’s dwindling empire. As a Kenyan native, Barack Obama Sr. was a British subject whose citizenship status was governed by The British Nationality Act of 1948. That same act governed the status of Obama Sr.‘s children…’ “

Read that last line again.

“That same act governed the status of Obama Sr.‘s children…”

That’s an admission that Great Britain “governed the status” of Barack Obama, Jr. He has chosen to highlight this on his own volition.

And this leads to the relevant question:

HOW CAN A NATURAL BORN CITIZEN’S STATUS BE “GOVERNED” BY GREAT BRITAIN?

A natural born citizen’s status should only be governed by the United States.

Hat Tip: Natural Born Citizen blog



A comment from another American says it well:



Barack Hussein's dual citizenship with the Britain and the United States disqualifies him from serving as President of the United States according to the Constitution and the our Founding Fathers. (Kenya was a commonwealth at the time of Obama's birth.) The question is not whether he is a citizen. The requirement in question is "No person except a NATURAL BORN CITIZEN...shall be eligible to the office of President." Obama's father was Kenyan and his mother was to young to confer citizenship at the time of birth according to the federal laws.

Holding true to the importance of being a NATURAL BORN CITIZEN why did Democrats hold hearings on McCain's eligibility ridiculing him being born in the Panama Canal Zone? The conclusion of that hearing is that McCain is a natural born citizen because both his parents were US citizens and the birth occurred in a US possession.

So, the bottom line we have to ask our selves is do we follow the constitution or do we allow despotism creep upon our shores?

I affirm we follow the constitution and keep our freedoms.

Christinewjc said...

About Social Security. I could write a book about it! But the end result is this: IT IS GOING BANKRUPT! My generation (baby boomers) may be the last one to receive the benefits that we paid into it. There will not be enough workers (56 million abortions didn't help - when SS was started - abortion was illegal and UNTHINKABLE!) to support the retirees. And Obama and his cohorts want us to trust the government to NOT WRECK HEALTH CARE with his terrible public option plan? Give me a break!! The American people are not stupid!

The book that I would recommend that you read is Mark Levin's "Liberty and Tyranny."

Kevin said...

Hi Christine,
But Socieal Security is really socialized medicine and so is the medical program for the veterans. Obama didn't wreck Social Security--it has been in trouble for a long time, but no administration wants to tackle the problems.

About that book--I see that Mark R. Levin is a conservative talk-show host, but not a historian. I don't think I would get a accurate view of the topics suggested by this guy. I would prefer real history books written by historians.

About what you do want: I don't think that anything President Obama will say will make an effect on you. You are really asking him to tell you that he is not a U.S. citizen, therefore he cannot be president. If he came out and said he is a naturalized citizen, you wouldn't believe him. What kind of 'paper trails' do you really want? There is plenty of evidence that he went to Columbia and Harvard. Why would transcripts make you happy? Sara Palin hasn't released her transcripts either, and McCain won't release his Naval Academy transcripts--but that doesn't mean there isn't a paper trail.

About his history in the Illinois State Senate--are you claiming he wasn't an Illinois State Senator? Or are you claiming there is absolutely no record of his voting history in the Senate?

I would still like to know what is so tyrannical about the current administration, and what is so communistic/marxist about the current administration. I don't see it, but maybe I am missing something. I would like some concrete examples.

Christinewjc said...

Gary's Response via email and now posted here:

I agree that it is always conceivable to find things that "might" be better to spend money on. For that matter, it might be better just to let the people keep the money and spend it themselves. My main point was that using that as a comment against any particular politician or
administration is disingenuous. The country has gone for several decades steadily increasing the spending on education for example and has little if any improvement to show for it. In the same way, the dollars might have been reallocated for poor people, and then sucked up largely in fraud and abuse, such as is common in things like food stamps, hurricane
cash cards, etc., and we would still have Saddam Hussein to deal with along with a haven for terrorists in Iraq.

Obviously, someone is getting their way on tax increases in California.
It's one of the highest states in the union as far as personal income tax. My research shows that the top rate is 10.3%, which includes a 1% surcharge on incomes over a million dollars per year enacted in 2004 (prop 63). Far from benefiting the state, it has contributed to an outflow of wealthy households to neighboring low income states. I've also read that there is a (supposedly) temporary sales tax increase of
1% that just went into effect in April. Combine that with a climate that is often hostile to business, and you have dropping revenue and people leaving.

As far as the federal government, the major problems are no longer
involved in the "services," though that may make a comeback considering how fast government is growing now. Improving the economy would require pro-business and pro-energy production policies. If you assume an average tax rate of around 20%, then you see that it takes 5 private sector workers to pay for every new government job, and that doesn't even include budget for the job outside of payroll. Government expansion
has helped reduce the unemployment rates, at least from going as high as they would, but long-term it's a loser for tax revenue. We also need to get entitlements under control since that has been diagnosed as a major problem for decades. It's going to be painful any way you slice it.
Claiming that additional benefits such as health care can be added
without contributing to the problem strikes me as beyond belief.

(continued next comment)

Christinewjc said...

Gary's comment continued:

Fascism in the current administration -

Well, for starters he has focused blame for the current problems pretty much exclusively on the "free market" and on previous administrations, with particular attention to the Bush administration. Let's look at the record.

I'm certainly not going to deny that reckless lending practices and risk taking contributed to the housing meltdown. What the President and the Dems in congress refuse to acknowledge is that they supported large portions of legislation to encourage the problem. For example, the Dems
authored legislation that not only encouraged risky loans to low income people who could not afford it, but they also made it pretty much a prerequisite of any plan for the bank to expand.

In 2006, John McCain (and I am not a McCain fan) warned the senate that Fannie and Freddie were playing it fast and loose. Barney Frank, head of the banking committee told him basically that there was no problem.

Add to that the demonization of doctors, health insurance companies, corporate executives, etc. Again, I'm not defending executive pay, merely the right of corporations to establish their own pay systems. For all the flack that health insurance companies get, I just read that the actual profit margin is 2%. That's hardly extravagant.

Despite his posturing during the campaign about wanting to hear from people with different ideas, his comments for anyone disagreeing with him have been far from cordial. More like "I don't want those who caused the problem to do much talking." Shut up is shut up, no matter how casually it's couched.

On the more tangible front, the deals worked out with GM effectively seized property from independent dealers and share holders (capitalists)and transferred them to union control. That's certainly socialist or fascist.

Talk of wealth distribution on the campaign trail - very socialist.

Attempting to place health care under government control, and if you read HR 3200, there's no other logical interpretation, very socialist.

(continued next comment)

Christinewjc said...

Gary's comment continued:

Now, as to Obama’s use of czars…I know that other presidents have used them as well, though in less quantity. My concern in this regard is the assignment or designation of some of the czars. For example: Green jobs, compensation, auto. All of these are private sector areas. Green jobs represents the government steering the economy, deciding winners and losers as it were. What is even worse in this case, is that in other countries where they have tried green jobs (e.g., Spain), they found that they lost several other jobs for ach “green” job created.

Compensation – None of the government’s business, unless the government is fascist/socialist. Automobile – Again, steering and picking. Inevitably, when the government subsidizes one area, others lose.

Cap and Trade – Back door fascism. The government creates a commodity
(CO2 credits? whatever) that has never existed before, and declare that they are now required to operate businesses that produce CO2. By regulating the price and availability, they basically control the cost of business operation, and hence the price and operability. Do you remember the when Obama said that he people could build coal plants if
they wanted to, but they would go bankrupt if they did? I do. Very Marxist.

Capital gains taxation – Obama said in one of the campaign debates that he would raise capital gains taxes even though that had been shown to reduce the revenue from such taxes. His reason – Fairness. When the
government redistributes on their idea of fairness, that is Marxism.

Use of union muscle against dissenters in town halls. This was more of an issue with congress, however unions are getting substantial favors.
They have received them in the bailouts, and will continue to receive them in the health care bill should it pass.

Support for socialist leader in Honduras attempting to circumvent
country's constitution.

Repeated staging of propaganda events where "random" questioners later turn out to be members or family members of campaign staff.

Use of failure of the finance section as an excuse for increased
regulation even though there was already extensive regulation that was ignored or not properly enforced.

Now I will admit to being a big detractor of the president's policies, but it seems to me that every solution he plans for any problem involves either government control, government bailout, or increased government regulation. Has he suggested anything that would improve or encourage
the private sector? I want to give credit where credit is due.

Kevin said...

Hi Gary,
It is taking me a bit of time to go through your response...
About education--I wouldn't say we have nothing to show in regards to spending more on education. There are more people who have higher degrees, and this translates into making more money, which ultimately leads to a higher quality of life. I think this is worth something (of course, I teach so you can see I have an interest in this...).

I would agree with you about that so-called temporary 1% increase in sales tax. I would bet they won't get rid of it when the economy gets better.

About your comment: "Claiming that additional benefits such as health care can be added
without contributing to the problem strikes me as beyond belief." The way I see it is that if you make people healthier (through visiting the doctor at a reasonable cost), then in the long run the cost of health care should go down (because people are more aware of their own health and can afford to go to a dr. when there are problems or potentially take care of a problem before it starts).

I totally agree with you that legislation on risky loans caused most of this giant mess (I also don't think it was a coincidence that gasoline prices skyrocketed just before the housing crash), but to be fair to President Obama, he didn't become president until Jan 20 and we were in most of this mess before he started. Yes, he has now inherited it and I am glad that he takes responsiblity for getting us out of it. But his administration can't be blamed for all the financial mess, except for what happens after he took office.

About GM: My brother-in-law works for GM, so I thought I would be up-front about that. In terms of the buy-out--I think Obama would be damned one way or the other. If the government had let GM go under, many people would have been out of work. Taxes would have gone down and he would have been blamed. The government saved them, along with the jobs, keeping the taxes rolling in. My understanding is that most of this buy-out was based on loans, which must be repaid. That doesn't sound like socialism to me, but I have to admit I don't know all the details.
I'll try to get to the rest of your comments soon.
--Kevin

Gary Baker said...

"There are more people who have higher degrees, and this translates into making more money, which ultimately leads to a higher quality of life. I think this is worth something (of course, I teach so you can see I have an interest in this...)."

You might want to re-evaluate that stance. Studies show that grade inflation is pretty rampant on a lot of campuses. Additionally, many colleges have begun offering PC degrees that are basically worthless. (Women's studies, Minority studies, African-American studies.) My definition of "worthless" in this case is that they have been evaluated as so poor in improving job prospects that the student's will not be able to make up for the cost of the degree and the income they lost for not working that four years. Additionally, other students lost out in the deal. The spot given for a functionally useless degree could have been provided to someone else who could have gotten a productive degree.

I am the first member of my family to graduate from college. I am very pro-education. To that end, I scan a lot of education websites. The cost of a public school education corrected for inflation has doubled since the seventies. Much has been wasted do to education unions and ineffective teaching methods.

Gary Baker said...

"The way I see it is that if you make people healthier (through visiting the doctor at a reasonable cost), then in the long run the cost of health care should go down (because people are more aware of their own health and can afford to go to a dr. when there are problems or potentially take care of a problem before it starts)."

Incorrect. Studies show that while preventative care improves the quality of life, it does not lower costs. In fact, it will raise them long term. The reason is that approximately 80% of health care costs occur in the last 6 months of life. Eventually, everyone is going to die, so your going to either pay that, or not. If you pay it, you spend more. If you don't then you fulfill the comment about "death panels." Someone is going to have to decide what gets cut, and that decision will be made by bureaucrats.

Gary Baker said...

"But his administration can't be blamed for all the financial mess, except for what happens after he took office. "

I quite agree, but we go into a "sauce for the goose" situation. It wasn't the Bush administration that mandated risky loans. That was the Community Recovery and Reinvestment Act pushed and protected by Democrats. It is at least as unfair for Mr. Obama to say that he is carrying baggage from the Bush administration.

Gary Baker said...

"The government saved them, along with the jobs, keeping the taxes rolling in. My understanding is that most of this buy-out was based on loans, which must be repaid. That doesn't sound like socialism to me, but I have to admit I don't know all the details."

Part of the fascist program (and I am speaking of generic fascism, not nazism) is government control of private companies. As far as bailouts go, some were made to companies that it looks like they will be repaid. I applaud the companies. Others were made to companies that will not, which sucks. But in both cases, the Federal government used that leverage to control both business policies and specifics of who received shares of the companies. In GM's case, that included the unions and Canada's government. These deals were made without giving the stockholders and debt holders the protections that they were entitled to under existing law. The Executive Branch essentially cut a deal that was the proper role of the judiciary, and it did so to the benefit of its union allies. So, those entitled to a say in the settlement and the business operation were shut out arbitrarily by the Federal government. It is debatable as to whether or not that was the best way to go, but whether it was or not, it was still an action in the fascist/socialist mode.

Next up, the government is about to become the sole broker for student loans. It was recently brought up that the government funded NEA is the largest supporter of the arts in the nation. The NEA just tried to leverage that into art supporting Obama. I wonder what they'll do when they control access to loans which are a necessity for most people to pursue higher education.

Kevin said...

Hi Gary,
You said: "for a functionally useless degree." I would disagree with you on what is a functional degree and what isn't. A person who gets a B.A. in Women's Studies, or African American Studies not only gets exposed to their own area of interest, but as you know, about 2/3 of a Bachelor Degree is taken up by other subjects to round out the degree. So a person who has a B.A. degree in Women's Studies might have taken a course in Business Administration, which will lead to a better paying job, even if not in their degree field. It is better for that student to have gotten a degree that you consider functionally useless than not getting the degree at all.

As you can probably tell, I am pro-union as well. This country has been built on people coming together as a group to use that power to level out the playing field. I would hate to think what this country would be like without unions (14 hour work days, one dollar an hour while the fatcats get all the money). You just have to look at the history of England during the first Industrial Revolution to see what life what like before unions.

Gary Baker said...

Hi Kevin,

"So a person who has a B.A. degree in Women's Studies might have taken a course in Business Administration, which will lead to a better paying job, even if not in their degree field."

Under some circumstances you may be correct, but certainly not all. Like any other commodity, the value of a college degree has suffered as more people have been obtained them, particularly where grades have been inflated. The results that a lot of grads in non-technical fields are seeing is that they are becoming less likely to get a job that requires a degree at all, and if they do it doesn't make up for the loans and lost time along the way. My personal belief is that we (the US) would be a lot better off funding tech schools and apprenticeship programs for those not college minded. Like I said, I was the first person in my family to graduate from a four year program. I was also the poor relation for a long time. My family made excellent livings in trades and professions that did not require college. I'm curious to see what will happen over the next decades.

I'll certainly agree that there was a time that unions served a useful function. I also think that time has passed by. California has many examples. I know for a fact that at least one city has gone bankrupt and others are considering it because it's the only way they can get out from under crippling union contracts. They are also the largest single force preventing effective education reform (school choice, merit pay, etc.) and were in no small measure responsible for the automobile crash in Detroit. When Japanese workers make approximately $40 in pay in benefits per hour and American union workers make $70+ you can kiss competitiveness goodbye. The Longshoreman's Union several years ago opposed a major upgrade that could have cut the off-load time of ships by over 70% for the sake of protecting jobs. That was the same tact they took in Michigan. Opposing efficiency for the sake of keeping more people on the line is a long term loser. I also understand that there are thousands of teachers out in CA that are sitting in a room eight hours a day, reading mags because they can't trust them with kids and the union has made it too hard to fire them. Sorry, I just can't buy into giving anyone that kind of protection. The results pretty much speak for themselves.