Friday, April 23, 2010

The Pleasures of a Camera and a Flower

I admit it. I love to photograph flowers. They show an endless display of colors and shapes. They just make me feel renewed and energized. Lots of people look at flowers, but not many really see them. Few look at them from all angles, compose them within their milieu, and look for the deeper meanings about life that they convey. A flower is a master of survival, but it uses its beauty to survive. For what it needs to live it gives back an enjoyment equaled by few things in this life. Maybe that is why, at this time of year most of us make our annual pilgrimage to purchase flowers to plant around our homes. What would springtime be without flowers?

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Slandering Government Workers - What else is new?

I posted a very good CBS news editorial by Ben Stein defending Government Workers as hard working and even heroic. You can see that at:

Very quickly came the reply from a friend which is so typical of what is being used by Republican Demagogues. They live off selling the myth that Government can't do anything right. Here is my friends statement and my reply:

Comment of RS:
Ben is not talking about the shiftless do-nothings that work at the state level, and probably also for the Feds who schmooze those above them without doing any work at all but are pushed up the ladder merely because they have tenure. This includes those in civil service positions as well as some teachers (by the way ask any truly hard working teacher off the record and they will tell you horror stories of some of those with tenure). Certainly those people are also in the private sector but are much less likely to last because of the shear urgency they are dealing with due to private industry profit margins, deadlines, etc. that are pushed under the rug in government jobs because tax dollars will always be there. Before you accuse me of just "walking the Republican line", stop now because I know of many instances due to relatives and friends who are in or are married to quality gov't workers. Face it, gov't workers are NOT NEARLY under the same scrutiny of private sector workers.
My Reply:
Almost everything you say above is just wrong. It is what you hear but not what I saw as a government worker. I have seen just as many lazy schmoozers in private business, and most businesses are not on the edge. Dilbert is too often a true reflection of the private corporate world. I was always amazed when on boards or committees with private business people at what ditherers they were. Couldn't make a decision, couldn't act, wanted to do ridiculously wasteful things. I think there is a reason why private insurers need 17% overhead and Medicare has under 3%. It is the shear waste of high paid corner office types, ridiculous profit margins in what are virtual monopolies, and convention and traveling costs to party. That isn't government - its private business. In the private business world all you need is a corner office to hide in, while in government service we were always under the gun, short staffed, and suffering slanders like the one you just made. Imagine how it is to work hard and have your bosses (the politicians) demean and defame you for political gain. How strange to hear this critique when private corporations and banks have, by their incompetence, nearly ruined the country and bankrupted us.