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AvatarComments by Oscar Gordon*

On “The GM Strike is Going to Take a While

It could just be the Union doesn't like that temp workers aren't in the Union, and they want them to be. And that's fine, it's a Union workplace, they have the right to complain about that.

But if GM is using temp workers and stringing them along with empty promises of being hired on, that's a shitty thing to do to people.


For me, a lot of it comes down to employee expectations. If I work for a firm who supply long term engineers to companies as temporary workers, and I KNOW* that there is zero expectation that I will be hired on by the customer as an FTE, then I accept this and do the work asked of me under that paradigm.

However, if I work for a firm (and I have worked for such a firm in the past), and the firm, and the customer, both make noise about hiring temps/contractors as FTEs, but never really do, or do so very infrequently, then someone is being very disingenuous to the employees.

What I am hearing is that the latter is what is going on. I could be wrong (Unions and companies aren't always honest regarding the details of such things).

*This is my primary objection to treating Uber/Lyft drivers as regular employees under the law. Neither company was being dishonest regarding the nature of the work. You don't get to sign up for the 'Vinegar of the Month Club' and then demand that the state pass a law making it the 'Wine of the Month Club'.

On “Clown Show: Corey Lewandowski Amuses Himself at Jerry Nadler’s Circus

The point of that whole debacle was that Trump couldn't be bothered to get the latest NOAA predictions, he was showing data that was (IIRC) already a day or two old.

On “The GM Strike is Going to Take a While

I thought this sounded familiar...

I don't begrudge employers like GM using temp work to fill in, but at some point, the Master's of the Universe need to fish or cut bait. Either your temporary demand is a permanent state of affairs, or you are just messing with your employees.


From interviews I've heard, one of the sticking points is GMs use of long term temporary workers. People who are hired as temps and still working as temps 2, 3, or 4 years later.

The union has a point that after a certain amount of time (IMHO, a total of 6+ months or work in a 12 month period), a temp worker should transition to FTE, or be let go.

On “The Princess Bride Re-Make: Make it More Than Mostly Dead

Kermit & Piggy are obvious, Bunsen and Honeydew are Miracle Max and his wife.

Gonzo is Fezzini.

On “Joe Biden’s Right

Honestly, I'm good either way. As long as Madoff's ability to cause further harm is greatly diminished through lifetime parole, I'm fine with that. If he can make good on his debt to others, even better.

On “Wednesday Writs: Criminal Justice Reform

I can see laws for lights and reflectors (remember the lady killed by the autonomous car in Mesa, AZ - no lights or reflectors).

But bike bells aren't loud enough to be worth much. Unless the law requires the 'bell' to be above a certain dB.

Otherwise, totally agree with you.


L6: My bike has a bell, but I only use when going slow. If I'm moving, I don't have time to ring the bell, and my voice is much, much louder. Stupid law, good riddance.

On “Clown Show: Corey Lewandowski Amuses Himself at Jerry Nadler’s Circus

They did, but they were those cheap while plastic butter knives that don't even make decent shivs when they break.

On “Joe Biden’s Right

Perhaps there in lies an answer.

Madoff's crime was too big, he has no hope of making it right, or even making a good faith effort towards that goal, so he gets to die in prison.

But other fraudster s get a small taste of prison (to motivate them to make the good faith effort) and a chance to make it right.

On “The GM Strike is Going to Take a While

That's not entirely true, there was trickle down (GM has profit sharing, etc.). The union feels that the trickle down was not aligned with the profit made.

And perhaps they have a point, but it's hard to know since neither side has (AFAIK) released details of offers, counters, and the sticking points. All I've heard so far is what Vikram mentions, along with noise from GM that they are trying to plan for long term viability and want to invest more in electric vehicles, etc.

Which is a valid desire from GM, but again, without knowing details, it's hard to evaluate whether or not GM is going to be stretched for future investment if it offers the Union more.

On “Clown Show: Corey Lewandowski Amuses Himself at Jerry Nadler’s Circus

I am not impressed by Lewandowski, but I almost want to watch him engage the committee while having exactly zero fecks to give. Nadler an Co. are all a bit too impressed with themselves and their committee.

On “The Princess Bride Re-Make: Make it More Than Mostly Dead

The best tribute I've seen so far is the scenes in Deadpool 2 with a grown Fred Savage duct taped to the bed from Princess Bride.

That was awesome!


Andre is no more. Out of simple respect for his performance, no one should ever remake that movie.

On “Joe Biden’s Right


Madoff is just the prototypical financial crimes kinda guy.

While I ideally want the victims made whole, the reality is not every victim can ever be made whole. So we have to want something else as well, and what I want is justice that isn't merely punitive, but also rehabilitative and compensatory.

And I place a great deal more emphasis on those two latter, than the foremost.


Yes, I did exclude it, because that's what happens when you simply shoot down an idea.

Work with me here, if you see a flaw, maybe offer a fix, don't just criticize. What do we do with a guy like Madoff?

And I know you aren't a punish kinda guy.


OK then, I guess we just keep doing what we are doing. Lock them all up, don't think about rehabilitation or compensation or anything, just punish, punish, punish.

On “Epstein Dead

This is the same system that enabled Nassar, and the Catholic Church, after all.

If it can be swept under a rug, it will be swept under a rug.

On “Joe Biden’s Right

I don't know how talented he was, if at all. But it's less about the gold mine and more about the effort to make things right versus simple punishment that just sucks up resources for zero gain. Maybe the guy never makes more than $55K a year, so for his last few years of life, he's only paying back $5K a year, but that at least he's working towards compensation.


Depends on the crime, of course.

Can't stop shooting a gun on the street? Yeah, you might need to be put in custody for a long time.

Can't stop selling 'loosies' on the street? Why do we care, again?

On “Making A Conversation Out of Talking Points

That she does. Plans are great, when everyone does what you want.

What she needs is a plan for getting congress to cooperate with her plans.


Or perhaps I am just tired of the typical response of "white mans fault". It's not impressive, or clever, or funny, because frankly it offers up nothing useful.

We all know legacy power structures are a problem. We all know that those power structures are largely controlled by old white men who haven't had the decency to die off yet (an unintended consequence of medical advances).

Talk to me about how you think we should dismantle those power structures and what we should replace them with. And being the libertarian I am, don't talk to me about just putting women or people of color into those structures, because frankly old white DO NOT have a monopoly on corruption or corruptibility.


I don't find that criticism very useful, because frankly, just about any policy can be spun as a way to maintain, or gain, power over others, and since the bulk of those who hold and seek power are white men (or white women), it's just a game in figuring out said policy cements entrenched power.

The few exceptions are policies which attempt to dismantle structural racism, and even those are often so riddled with unintended consequences that power just entrenches in other ways (usually as a response to the unintended effects).


Is that not exactly what the OP is arguing against?

*Comment archive for non-registered commenters assembled by email address as provided.