Work with me a little bit to follow this logic. If the government says gay marriage is legal, then it is required for all private citizens to approve of and cooperate with it. That which is not forbidden is mandatory.
Now, when we say that gay marriage is legal, what we actually mean is that the government is required to offer and recognize these marriages. But Tomasky assumes that what the state must do, private citizens must do also. If a law binds the actions of the state, it is also binding on Mr. and Mrs. John Q. Public. There is no distinction, in Tomasky’s mind, between government action and private action.
God forbid that the concept of freedom should allow you, as an individual, to resist social changes you don’t like. Clearly, the best way to protect religious liberty is to never invoke it in defense of anything that is really, really unpopular. Or at least, anything that is really unpopular among New York and DC elites.
See what I mean when I say that the left has no concept of freedom? It may have some concept of a range of disagreement that is socially acceptable and on which the state chooses to remain neutral—though with the revival of old-fashioned Political Correctness, that range is getting increasingly narrow, even for the true believers. But they have no concept of a right to do something or think something or say something simply because it is what you think and want, regardless of whether society as a whole approves of it. And without that, there is no concept of freedom.
To be sure, the concept of freedom was damaged long ago. The whole reason the new religious freedom laws are necessary is because the ever-expanding power of the state has built up so many controls that already interfere with every little aspect of life. (The original, federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act was passed in response to a court case involving drug laws.) So the laws inevitably clash with citizens’ private judgment and personal convictions in myriad ways. And these new laws are not even an absolute protection against that interference.
Category Archives: Employment
Older workers who do lose a job spend longer periods out of work, and if they do find another job, it tends to pay less than the one they left. A new survey from the AARP sheds a lot of light on how older people react to sudden unemployment, what their new work looks like, and why.
So what happens if you do find another job? According to the AARP survey, although older people often found the working conditions at their new jobs were better than their old one, nearly half found that the new job paid less.
People who’ve spent a long time developing a specific skill set have more limited options when they go out looking for something new, and indeed, 53 percent of re-employed respondents said they changed occupations. Employers can be reluctant to hire someone who might come with higher health-care costs and have a shorter future with the company.
That’s why avoiding job loss in the first place is so important.
Americans believe our nation is facing some substantial challenges. Government spending is out of control. Terrorists seek to destroy our way of life. Our economic recovery has been slow. Our borders aren’t secure. The federal government has usurped powers that rightly belong to our states.
I hear from people who lost their jobs and are back in the workforce but who still have not quite made it back to where they were before the recession — and they wonder when, or if, they’ll ever get there.
Across party lines and state lines, Americans want America to be secure and prosperous again. And they’re looking for leaders who can focus on that goal and who will get results.
One thing we’ve learned in Wisconsin through all our challenges and successes over the past four years, is when we keep our focus on what matters to the people, we earn their respect, if not always their agreement. And, in a purple state that hasn’t gone to a Republican presidential candidate in 30 years, our approach has translated into three wins in four years.
There has been much discussion about a media double standard where Republicans are covered differently than Democrats, asked to weigh in on issues the Democrats don’t face. As a result, when we refuse to take the media’s bait, we suffer.
I felt it this week when I was asked to weigh in on what other people said and did and what others’ beliefs are. If you are looking for answers to those questions, ask those people.
I will always choose to focus on what matters to the American people, not what matters to the media.
#1 Wal-Mart Greeters
Who better to meet and greet shoppers — and urge them to load their shopping carts to overflowing — than hooded and black-robed jihadists who will decapitate anyone who dares to oppose them?
#2 Part of the Establishment of Free Community Colleges
As the president never tires of saying, we must “invest” more in the education and training of our young people —including, as he sees it, young jihadists who are contemptuous of everything Western education has to offer.
#3 Posters, Flags, and All Kinds of Signage
The Islamic State is already on record in promising to fly its black flag over the White House. If that is the kind of thing young jihadists like to do, why not encourage them to fly their flag and to raise their banners at other public buildings around the country?
#4 Border Security
The jihadists know all about border security.
#5 Tax Collection and Revenue Enhancement
The Obama administration could employ thousands or even millions of jihadists as old-style tax farmers or tax collectors — personally empowered to go out into the field to collect money from anyone lucky enough to continue to possess it.
#6 Obamacare Death Panels
In addition to their new duties as tax collectors, jihadists could therefore have a role in the implementation or enforcement of Obamacare.
#7 Social Media
The astounding growth of the Islamic State over the past year has been due in no small part to its mastery of the Internet and social media to recruit new members from all over the world and to launch terrorist attacks throughout the Middle East and Europe. Surely, the new Obama jobs-for-jihadists plan will find a way to channel their social media moxie in more innocent ways — as the president himself did recently in clowning around with a selfie stick… making the video of himself for HealthCare.gov that went viral.
#8 Infrastructure Building and Demolition
Let the jihadists have at our roads, bridges, dams, and port facilities.
#9 Early Childhood Education and Development
No time is too soon for children to be taken from their parents and turned over to educators trained by the state. Those who have been trained in this way (including many jihadists) can train others.
#10 Sustainability / Reducing our Carbon Footprint
The jihadists want to turn the clock back more than 1,200 years — teaching us all to live like goat herders. What’s not to like about that? We have everything to learn from them about reducing our carbon footprint.
More than 5.46 million foreign nationals received work permits from the federal government since 2009, according to a new report from the Center for Immigration Studies. Data uncovered from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services agency reveal that approximately 982,000 work permits were given to illegal immigrants and other foreign nationals unqualified for admission, most of whom crossed the border without inspection. USCIS is the agency within the Department of Homeland Security responsible for issuing work permits and processing applications related to President Obama’s executive action on immigration. On Tuesday, the Senate is scheduled to vote on a bill that funds DHS, while blocking funding that would allow USCIS to implement the president’s executive action.
The remarkable number of work permits granted by the federal government to law-breaking aliens better explains how all net jobs growth since 2007 has gone to immigrants. The government issued approximately 1.7 million work permits since 2009 to aliens whose status was not known, not recorded, or not disclosed by USCIS, according to the report. The report says employment is not authorized by law for approximately 1.2 million immigrants who collected work permits while having a temporary visa status. And the data show that approximately 1,200 new work permits went to unlawful entrants who were denied asylum, were suspected of using fraudulent documentation, were stowaways, or were refused at a port of entry.
Approximately 1.1 million legal immigrants and 700,000 guest workers enter the country every year along with the millions of foreign nationals that have received work permits from the federal government, according to a statement from CIS. “I was astonished at the huge number of work permits that are being issued by the Obama administration outside the legal immigration system through executive discretion, especially at a time of high unemployment and stagnant wages,” said Jessica Vaughan the director of policy studies at CIS in a statement. “Besides the effect on the American worker, it encourages and rewards more illegal immigration.”
Business leaders tell us our students are not prepared for the jobs they need them to fill. And while they keep proposing taxpayers pay more taxes for schools, maybe business ought to put their money and resources in our schools, rather than continue to spend money on studies recommending what taxpayers, educators and government should do.
So, this might just be a great time for business people to provide students experiences at learning the “fun stuff” in the workplace and then taking it back to the classroom where it all comes together. It’s not the same to have someone come and give a presentation to students about what takes place on a job. What helps students is to actually be there and experience the workplace.
Start those opportunities early in the child’s educational training. Schools could tie classwork learning with work-based learning; for example, three days of class work learning and two days of workplace learning. Then schoolwork makes sense and even becomes exciting. High school students then can see in an actual workplace just why it is they need to learn what they learn.
If students can observe, shadow, follow people as they do their jobs in the workplace, they can learn and begin to connect how the classwork makes sense in preparing for the future. Here is the reason you need to know the math, or the science, or the way to communicate clearly on the job.
Maybe instead of spending their resources to conduct studies and lobby government policymakers, business could spend their money on internships, sabbaticals and summer jobs. They could take the initiative and get together with educators and share how businesses can tie in workplace learning with classwork learning. That investment may yield the greatest return for employers. Start doing the fun stuff.
Since President Obama took office in 2009, the number of people who’ve dropped out of the labor force has climbed by 12.4 million.
That’s basically equal to the entire population of Obama’s home state of Illinois — which measured 12.8 million in 2014 — and nearly 2 million more than the state’s working age population.
Here’s another way to look at the massive growth in nonworkers during the Obama recovery:
While 12.4 million dropped out of the labor force from January 2009 to December 2014, the economy created a net total of just 6.4 million jobs.
Still another troubling measure: The labor force participation rate dropped again in December, hitting 62.7%. That’s down from 63% at the start of that year and 65.7% when Obama took office.
Had the participation rate not dropped since 2009, the unemployment rate today would be over 9% — higher than the 7.8% rate when Obama took office.
And lest anyone suggest that this leap in the number of nonworkers is due to the aging of the baby boomer population, keep in mind that over those years the number of people over age 65 climbed by just over 4 million, according to Census data.
The America Enterprise Institute seldom has much positive to say about the impact of California’s leftist public policies on business and job growth in the less-than-Golden State. But AEI’s blog pointed to Monday’s Bureau of Labor Statistics unemployment report to show that conservative Texas continues to crush liberal California in job growth.
The real action in Texas Tuesday wasn’t the klieg lights on Texas Governor Rick Perry being booked after vetoing funding for Travis County’s District Attorney and YouTube sensation Rosemary Lehmberg, it was that Texas businesses have continued to add more than 1,000 jobs every day over the last 12 months. Despite leading the nation again with 46,600 in July, there was no big celebration in Texas. In the Friendship State, job creation is just business as usual.
But in California, officials were high fiving that Employment Development Department data “showed state’s unemployment rate remained flat at 7.4%” last month and that they actually picked up 27,700 jobs in the latest BLS report.
The U.S. economy was hit hard in the Great Recession, but since December 2007, Texas has added 1,078,600 net new jobs versus California’s 69,400 net new jobs. That works out to a ratio of more than 15 new workers added to Texas State’s payrolls for every one worker added to California payrolls.
The ranks of non-teachers – such as administrators, counselors, teacher aides and cafeteria workers – has swelled 130 percent since 1970 and they now make up 50 percent of all public school employees according to a new study, The Hidden Half: School Employees Who Don’t Teach.
Looking at data from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), the Thomas B. Fordham Institute found that the growth of non-teaching staff has greatly outpaced student growth over the past four decades.
From 1970 to 2010, the number of students grew by 8.6 percent, while the number of non-teaching personnel increased by 130 percent. Non-teachers now consume over a quarter of all education expenditures, the study found.
In addition, America now spends a greater percentage of its education funding on non-teachers than any other country in the world besides Denmark.
A previous study from the Friedman Foundation, The School Staffing Surge, found that “states could have saved more than $24 billion annually if they had increased/decreased the employment of administrators and other non-teaching staff at the same rate as students between 1992 and 2009.”
However, test scores and graduation rates show little evidence of improvement despite the explosive growth of non-teaching positions.
“As I showed in my study,” Ben Scafidi, author of The School Staffing Surge, told CNSNews.com, “student achievement in public schools did not rise between 1970 and 2008–even though staffing skyrocketed.”
With the exception of these two reports, the sharp increase in non-teaching public school employees has received little media attention or public scrutiny. That may be due in part to the difficulty in getting recent data on the trend.