Sunday, May 31, 2009

Unofficial FDR Poll and Surprising Results

Recently there has been comparison's between Obama and FDR[1]
and I've heard conflicting opinions FDR. Either FDR was nearly perfect and saved us from the Great Depression or his policies extended the Great Depression. I decided to ask the oldest people I know.

  1. My Father - although he died 8 years ago, I had a school assignment to ask him about FDR. My dad grew up in a small town in Arizona and remembered huddling around the radio and listening to the fireside chats. FDR apparently was good and communicating to the people.
  2. My Father-in-law - He had a good opinion of FDR. He grew up near San Francisco and his family struggled. He believes FDR created jobs and helped people out.
  3. Lady I visit from church - grew up in a larger city. Had positive things to say about FDR.
  4. My Uncle Jack - created his opinion on the comments from my grandfather (who died in 1960). My grandfather was a small business owner in Los Angeles and didn't like FDR at all. Grandpa even blames FDR for us going to war with the Japanese (That was a new one for me!)[1].

My verdict on FDR:

  • He helped the people who were struggling at the bottom of the economy.
  • He punished businessmen who were in a position to help the economy.
  • He opened the worst Pandora's Box in history by knowingly provoking Pearl Harbor thus turning our non-interventionist country into a powerful war machine. Read Day of Deceit

The last item to me dwarf's anything to do with the economy.


Sunday, May 24, 2009

Imaginiff Obama were ...

Tonight we were playing the "Imaginiff" game. In this game, you write the names of several people (usually the players) down and roll dice to determine who is the "subject". Then you draw a card that reads "Imagine if _______ were a , what kind would they be?" Then they list 6 options and everyone guesses which they think fits best.

We like to use notable public figures, so we included Obama (Last time we played we used George Bush). First time we landed on Obama, we selected the card below purely by chance. We all had a good laugh!


Thursday, May 7, 2009

How many union workers does it take to change a light bulb?

I had an interesting conversation today with a friend I carpool with (I'm in a carpool as part of my effort towards U.S. energy independence). I decided to ask my friend if he has any experience with labor unions. I've been hearing more about unions in the news than I have in a long time, so I was curious.

My friend's response: "Boy, do I!" (This was with a southern drawl, since he's from Tennessee). I knew that he had worked for Lockheed Martin, but it turns out he also worked in the Auto Industry. Here's a couple of his stories:

The Arc Welder

Lockheed had a portable arc welder that could be towed to different sites. one day a union employee drove his truck to work, hooked up the arc welder and towed it home. He then put an advertisement in the paper and sold it. You can't say union workers are not enterprising! The company that purchased the arc welder wanted the manuals, so they contacted the manufacturer. The manufacturer asked for the part number and then responded "That arc welder belongs to Lockheed Martin!". Lockheed was notified and they promptly fired the employee.

The union attorneys fought saying that Lockheed incorrectly terminated this employee and got his job back. When my friend left Lockheed, the employee still had his job.

How many union workers does it take to change a light bulb?

The union went on strike so non-union employees were reassigned to make up for the slack. Since my friend has an "Electrical and Aeronautical" background, he was assigned as an electrician. He was given a cart and had to respond to a pile of work orders. Most of them were changing light bulbs. After his first week of work, his supervisor came to him and said "You've processed more work orders in 1 week than my crew of union workers has done in the previous year". During this period, they found a building where these workers had beds tucked under counters for their naps. They also threw away more pornography than they have ever seen in their life.

"The Union has done so much for me"

A union worker was always telling my friend how much the union had done for him. The union worker was a talented painter and had a dream of starting his own motorcycle custom paint shop. He talked about it about as much as he did praise the union. Someone finally asked him, "When you start up your custom shop, do you plan on allowing the union into your company?". The union worker's response: "Absolutely NOT!"


My friend went to lunch with a union worker. They got along great, laughing and joking. My friend had to test a system he was working on so he slid a couple of pallets across the system. His union worker "buddy" came over and yelled at him and wrote him up for his "violation". It turns out that he has a quota for processing paletts and if he doesn't meet the quota, he works overtime. Apparently working overtime is more important to a union worker than being efficient.

I've never been in a union nor worked for a company with a union.

Friday, May 1, 2009

H1N1 "Swine" Flu Closes Local High School

I'm still a little baffled. There have been less than 20 people killed by this flu. The "normal" flu kills about 36,000 Americans each year. The 1918 "Spanish" flu killed over 600,000 people. I still haven't heard anyone say what makes the H1N1 flu unique or a concern.

On a personal note, we found out tonight that my son's High School will be closing for 2 weeks. I included the letter to the parents.

Dear Parent/Guardian:
As you know, H1N1 influenza A virus (also known as swine flu) has been detected in San Diego County residents, several of them children. I want to share with you what the situation is at your child’s school, how the County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency’s Division of Public Health Services is responding, and what you can do.
We have been working closely with individual schools to determine if students might have been exposed to the virus. We have determined a student that attends XXXXX High School has a probable infection with H1N1 influenza A virus. Under the guidelines issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and in a
decision made jointly between Public Health Services and the XXXXX Unified School District, we are closing XXXXX High School for a period of 14 days. The closure dates will be from 05/02/2009 to 05/15/2009 with the school being allowed to reopen on 05/18/2009. This closure includes all school-sponsored activities, such as sports or school dances.

Please understand this does not mean that your child has been directly exposed to the H1N1 virus. However, you should watch your child over the next 14 days to see if he/she develops the symptoms of: fever (100 degrees or higher), cough, sore throat, and runny nose.