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THE YEAR OF THE CONTRACTOR

THE YEAR OF THE CONTRACTOR


At the beginning of 2013, few Americans...
...Except those in the DMV and near military bases knew,
The extent to which our government contracted itself out,
The more non-permanent, private employees, the less the federal payroll grew.


But then came Edward Snowden,
His NSA disclosures still dribbling out,
Dollar darling Defense running ramrod over personal privacy,
Funds flowing freely, our military industrial complex went "walkabout!"


In the sixteen day government shutdown, "good cents!"
Congress authorized furlough pay for bonafide civil servants alone,
Just imagine if all federally related workers had been compensated,
Beltway Bandits temporarily thrown off the gravy train...hear them moan and groan!

Lamenting for Labor

     Job Killer! Job Killer! Job Killer! The implementation of Obamacare will result in "Part Time America," or so the fear mongering of the radical right of the Republican Party wants US to believe...
 ...But THAT'S already happened! The dismantling of full time employment predates the current Administration, and the rise of technology and corresponding increase in productivity, and globalization and the exporting of jobs overseas for cheaper labor, and "the Great Depression." The introduction of such wage earner insecurity goes all the way back to that most revered and oft invoked conservative, Ronald Reagan, under whom the contracting out of more and more functions of the Federal Government began in earnest, and if the revelations earlier this year of Edward Snowden are to be believed,  reached its current pinnacle post 9/11 under George W. Bush.

IT'S A GOOD THING!

IT'S A GOOD THING!

With the delay of the employer mandate, it now seems almost daily some large business is jettisoning its workers and/or retirees from its company health care plan onto the Obamacare exchanges, much to the lament of liberals. Stop whining! This will accelerate the process of separating medical insurance from job status - and many of those purchases will be federally subsidized, moving this country baby steps closer to a single payer, government provided universal coverage benefit - like they have in other advanced nations around the world! A little upfront pain for greater long-term gain! It's a good thing!

WHO ARE THE COWARDS NOW?

 

WHO ARE THE COWARDS NOW?

When Gabrielle Giffords was shot, I thought for sure Congress would rally for reform. After all, she was one of their own. Nope. Subsequently, there were other mass shootings, and cities with increases in individual homicides - the President's adopted hometown comes to mind - all provoking rhetorical rubbernecking - a passing, pensive pause replete with maligning monikers and divisive, derisive "debate," but no affirmative, ameliorative action. And then came Newtown, where most of the victims were very young children. Surely that would get our lawmakers to champion the cause, the politicians and babies "thing." And it did, for a while, until it didn't.

Syria & the Navy Yard Shootings: Not So Far Apart

    It was just a few weeks ago that Obama was ready to unilaterally lob missiles into Syria because he did not like how its current leader behaved in the world. Yesterday Aaron Alexis, apparently frustrated with how the US military, directly or indirectly his employer over recent years, was treating him, decided to bring firearms into the Navy Yard and kill some people. What's the difference? Both are "workplace disputes;" only the weapons used and scale of possible destruction, not the underlying basic intent and forum, vary. Both are "cowardly acts" - what happens when a person - or a nation - perceives control slipping and feels powerless. It has been this way in this country since 9/11. Top down. Follow the Leader. War and mass shootings. Not so far apart. Think about it...
 

DRAW THE "FED UP TO HERE" LINE

DRAW THE "FED UP TO HERE" LINE

On this playground we call Earth, why can't the kids get along?

Let's take Syria. Although it appeared he may have been winning the Civil War in recent months, we are being led to believe Assad used chemical weapons on his people. This makes no sense unless he saw the opposition forces, and the "innocent" civilians living either in the territory held by them, or contested, as a forthcoming resurgent threat, quite possibly because of all the recent rabblerousing for US support of the rebels spearheaded by John McCain. So to get a "head start," he crosses Obama's (now 98% of the world's and Congress') re-election rhetoric "red line," daring the American President to literally put our - or perhaps other Arab nations' -money where his mouth is.

SECRET SHOPPING ON THE WAY TO THE STATE'S HOUSE

SECRET SHOPPING ON THE WAY TO THE STATE'S HOUSE

The Missouri Attorney General is suing Walgreen's in yet another case alleging overcharging by the chain. In the past few years, CVS has been the object of similar litigation, multiple times as well. Both companies have a presence in the Commonwealth; the latter seems almost ubiquitous. So why hasn't Ken Cuccinelli investigated this consumer issue?

I have personally found discrepancies between the shelf sticker and the receipt price many times, around fifty cents per item, in almost every department, at CVS.