Posts Tagged ‘bigotry’

Are the Tories trying to reverse the American Revolution?

“Most revolutionaries are potential Tories, because they imagine that everything can be put right by altering the shape of society; once that change is effected, as it sometimes is, they see no need for any other.” ~ George Orwell

“I greatly fear some of America’s greatest and most dangerous enemies are such as think themselves her best friends.” ~ Nathan Hale

“Whatever the motivations of those who seek to use the federal government against the rest of us, they too have launched an unbridled and unprincipled political war against their fellow citizens.  From the perspective of history, in other words:  They are the new King George.” ~ Rob Natelson

*****

In the mid-nineties, Carl Sagan estimated that about 95% of our population is scientifically illiterate. And as such, based decisions on superstitions and fears that the bullies who control them might become unhappy. Right now, a lot of people in congress and the senate-both democrats and republicans, feel pressured to do the bidding of powerful people who put up the money for their re-election campaigns and “Leadership” PACs.

The results of these practices have given the reigns of government to the very people (The Tories) our founding fathers staged a revolution against. The intent of the revolution was to not allow The Tories to continue undermining personal freedoms, and over-taxing working people to sustain the luxurious lifestyles of the entitled and often idle affluent class who were protected by both royal decree and by the theocracy of the Anglican church.

“If I could conceive that the general government might ever be so administered as to render the liberty of conscience insecure, I beg you will be persuaded, that no one would be more zealous than myself to establish effectual barriers against the horrors of spiritual tyranny, and every species of religious persecution.” ~ George Washington, letter to the United Baptist Chamber of Virginia (1789)

“Persecution is not an original feature in any religion; but it is always the strongly marked feature of all religions established by law. Take away the law-establishment, and every religion re-assumes its original benignity.” ~ Thomas Paine, The Rights of Man (1791)

“During almost fifteen centuries has the legal establishment of Christianity been on trial. What has been its fruits? More or less, in all places, pride and indolence in the clergy; ignorance and servility in the laity; in both, superstition, bigotry and persecution.” ~ James Madison, General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Virginia (1785)

“While we are under the tyranny of Priests […] it will ever be their interest, to invalidate the law of nature and reason, in order to establish systems incompatible therewith.” ~Ethan Allen, Reason the Only Oracle of Man

“Our civil rights have no dependence on our religious opinions, any more than our opinions in physics or geometry.”  ~ Thomas Jefferson, A Bill for Establishing Religious Freedom (1779)

Today, legislators (many of them have David Koch* as a benefactor) often yield to the pressures of religious extremists who wish to force everyone to be under the control of the agenda of their own personal dogma–founded not in reason, but in superstition.  They also seem eager to reward corporations who would economically benefit from the measures of that kind of social control.  Additionally, some that avoid their fair share of taxes resulting in a disastrous burden on the poor and working class, get government contracts as a reward for their briberies.

This is the epitome of corruption which overrides the idea of one man-one vote. It begs the question of who these legislators truly represent. And now we have a Supreme Court, supposedly our council of the sage and wise, that upholds the rights of corporations above those of individual human beings.

“Unless you become more watchful in your states and check the spirit of monopoly and thirst for exclusive privileges you will in the end find that… the control over your dearest interests has passed into the hands of these corporations.” ~ Andrew Jackson

“All contributions by corporations to any political committee or for any political purpose should be forbidden by law,” ~ Theodore Roosevelt

“In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.” ~Dwight Eisenhower

*Why might you think some people feel the following represents some of David Koch’s agenda going back even as far as 1980?

Repeal all laws that restrict campaign contributions (in other words, allow legal bribery to continue unrestrained?), the privatization of all public roads and highways (or, allow the entitled landed gentry to set up unrestricted toll booths everywhere?), shutting down the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the Food and Drug Administration (because they interfere with unbridled profits by making corporations accountable to public safety and health?); the Department of Transportation, the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the Federal Aviation Commission, Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, all publicly funded schools and colleges, all aid to poor, the US Postal Service, and stop all state and federal programs intended for protecting the environment (open all public lands to unrestricted use by the lumber, coal and petroleum industries?). End all regulations of the pharmaceutical, banking, petroleum, manufacturing, and insurance industries, repeal the Occupational Safety and Health Act, all usury laws in all states (no legal restrictions on what interest,exorbitant or otherwise, can be charged?), and the repeal of any laws that might allow employees to sue their employer for discrimination, especially opposed to allowing women equal pay when doing the same work as men, even though it has been federal law since 1963.

Were not a lot of these points a part to the platform when he ran for vice president back in 1980?  Have you seen any change in his agenda since then?

These measures might prove quite profitable to 1% of the people, but not necessarily so good for the other 99%.  A lot of folks can see through the ironies and inconsistencies in modern day political rants, which are common not only in campaigns, but all over social media as well.  Yet as it is with many other social pressures, many people are quite fearful of offending their peer group by disagreeing with them.

Even so, the practices of what some of their peers seem to espouse are in great conflict with the principles so many people insist they hold so dear.  Some of you must suspect the hatred for the poor and disadvantaged that seems to spew constantly from many outspoken “leaders” of the religious right might appear to be in contention with the intent of what those so called leaders insist make up their foundational teachings.

“Jesus is ideal and wonderful, but you Christians – you are not like him.” ~ Mohandas (Mahatma) Gandhi

Advertisements

Equal Pay For Equal Work Regardless of Gender?

In order to prohibit gender-based wage discrimination between men and women in the same firm or establishment who perform jobs that require substantially equal skill, effort, and responsibility, The Equal Pay Act was passed, and signed into law by President Kennedy in 1963.  Fifty years later, there are some who claim on a national average, women still make in a range from about seventy-seven cents to eighty-one cents (depending on who’s stats you’re seeing) for each dollar earned by men doing the same jobs.

Evidently there has been enough concern about this that The Paycheck Fairness Act was proposed.  It passed through the House in 2008 and 2009, but has been blocked by the Senate. One of the principle intents of this new bill was to protect employees from retaliation for sharing salary information with their co-workers.  In other words, whenever a woman found out that one of her male co-workers doing the same job she was doing, but for a higher salary, and confronted management about it, both she and whoever provided her with that information could be (and have been) fired.

Some legislators saw this practice of keeping the pay discrepancies secret as an inequity, and saw it as an open practice to avoid compliance with federal law.  Other measures were to stiffen certain penalties for non-compliance, and to close loopholes in the Equal Pay Act by providing solutions for women who are not being paid equal wages for their work.

Here’s a true story:

In the 1990’s a woman who worked for a large American corporation was being promoted to a position previously held by a man.  The title of the position was market analyst.  She accepted it.  In addition to her new job, she was for a time expected to carry on with some of her previous clerical and administrative duties.  Eventually, an administrative assistant was hired to take over some of that.  All the time, she thought the company would appreciate her being a team player for “going above and beyond”, which is the way her boss described her to others.  Well, they didn’t.

She soon found out that although she was given the job she was not promoted to the same pay grade it formerly held.  She did the work, but never was placed at the pay grade enjoyed by the company’s other market analysts.  She knew if she complained formally about the obvious pay and work load discrepancies, they would find a way to terminate her.  By policy, they could not openly discuss their compensation with each other.

Sometime later, she was informed that the position of market analyst was being eliminated.  But that turned out to be not true, except for her region.  All the other market analysts kept their pay, but she was reduced to an hourly position.  Still, she was to perform the work of a market analyst, but never even close to the same pay a man received for the identical work.

In the same company, a man with administrative duties was reassigned to field logistics operations.  When asking who would do his old job, he was told:

“Oh, we’ll hire a woman.  We can get a girl to do this for a fraction of what we were paying you.  Besides, girls are good at clerical duties, and are usually better at muti-tasking than men, anyway.”

They openly invited other employees who might know of a “woman” that needed an office job to feel free to refer them.  The interviews were conducted.  Only women were interviewed although it is a fact that some men had submitted resumes.  A woman was hired at a significantly lower pay grade than her predecessor.  And of course, she was instructed, in fact warned to not divulge her compensation to anyone else in the company.

Oh, there are lots of stories, and you probably know some yourself.  Today, there are still real people out there who know The Equal Pay Act of 1963 is widely skirted, and even joked about by people who shouldn’t.  But the bill to fix the problem did not pass.

Kelly Ayotte, Senator from New Hampshire, said:

“The reason that I voted against that specific bill (equal pay for women) is that, I looked at it, and there were already existing laws that need to be enforced and can be enforced and I didn’t feel like adding that layer was going to help us better get at the equal pay issue.”

What? What layer? Passing a bill that calls for enforcing and providing the teeth to do it, so that a woman should be paid the same as a man if she is hired to do the same work is not “…going to help us better get at the equal pay issue”?!?  It won’t?  Hmmmm.  Is she crazy?  Is it her attempt to prove women say and do things on an intellectual level below her male counterparts so we can continue to discriminate against them?

Or, is it that she’s brilliant since she takes the same position as her male compadres who stand so firmly against women’s rights to be protected under the law equally with men?  If she is not crazy or openly prejudiced against women for some reason, why do you think she said such a thing?  In fact, why did every single one of the senators from the republican party vote against equal pay for women?  Did somebody tell them to?  I didn’t.  Did you tell them to take that bigoted stand?

So, just exactly why do you think a bill calling for equal pay for women in the workplace failed to pass?  Mitch McConnell of Kentucky said the bill opened the door to more lawsuits against employers.  So is that it?  It’s inconvenient to businesses that want to discriminate against women just because they are not male, and might get sued by these same said women over it?  Really?  Is that also your opinion?

Mitch is very proud of his firm and uncompromising stand on this issue.  A person may be steadfast and uncompromising, often at the risk of being called pig-headed by their opposition (an obvious slander to pigs).  People often flatter themselves unduly when making such a claim of holding staunchly for what they see to be high and mighty principles.  For you see, no matter how much they insist they’re right, or even believe they’re right, doesn’t mean they are.

Former GOP candidate for president, Mitt Romney, claimed to support pay equity for women according to his spokesperson, Amanda Henneberg.  Sarah Palin said she was for equal rights for women, but ironically, even as early as September, 2008, she went on record opposing legislation for equal pay for women because lawyers might make money suing companies that don’t comply.  At that time, it was also McCain’s position.

I cannot find where either she or McCain has ever made any public statement or vote to reverse that.  Why?  I mean really, why?!?  Is it about the money?  Who’s money?  Is it about not wanting to offend those with the big bucks who make campaign contributions?  Political practices of recent years might warrant at least some suspicion of it.  Or is it some kind of belief that women actually deserve less pay (nationally, from about 19 to 23% less than what is earned by men for the same job)?

Think about this: even if your prejudice is that women make inferior decisions than men, or do less or inferior work, why in the world would you assign them to tasks equal to what is expected from a man?  If it were true that females are inferior, and a man made the decision to assign a woman to a job with equal expectations as he would have for a man in that position, wouldn’t that be evidence that he, the man, was making an inferior, if not outright stupid decision?  In other words, if the task can be done equally well regardless of the worker’s sexual plumbing, what is the justification for a rationale that the man should be entitled under the law to be paid a higher rate?  And furthermore, it’s already against the intent of federal law (again, an opinion normally entitled to judges, but since I’m being judgmental here, I make no apology for it).

I’m sure you’ve heard some say it is a matter of religious instruction, and that in almost all the ancient mythologies and civilized cultures since the beginning of recorded history as well as The Torah, The Quran,  The Holy Bible, and The Book of Mormon, women generally held station slightly higher than cattle, and in some cases, lower.  Is that what you believe?  I believe, and therefore you certainly have the right to question it, one of the saddest delusions man has ever conceived of is that oppression of other people is authorized and approved of by the Deity.  And by no means do I limit my feeling about oppression to just sexual discrimination.

Please make a note that in the United States Senate, men and women get equal pay for equal positions.  Does that mean the job of a Senator is not as important as most other jobs?  Well, they certainly draw an above average income for such unimportant work that doesn’t pay a man at a higher rate than a woman.  Doesn’t that seem to beg the question just a little bit?

Obviously, the issue has no bipartisan support.  It’s split right down the isle, and the treatment of it has not been rational; it has been emotional.  There seems to have been a shortage of honest dialogue wanting to find a fair solution to the problem, but all we see is the rhetoric.  And the outcome has not been flattering to that rhetorical legislative body.  In fact, it makes them look as though their minds are stuck in the Dark Ages, and for many of them, that might be true.  So, let’s take the argument out of the idiotic divisiveness between democrats and republicans if you can do that (and most of you will not be able to do it for even a minute), and simply answer this:

If the decision was entirely up to you, what do you think would be the right thing to do?

And why do you think your decision would be the right thing to do?  Oh, you don’t have to tell me, but maybe you should tell your senators.  And while you’re talking to ’em, tell ’em this is not a basketball game, it’s about human rights and the livelihoods of families just in case any of them still might give a damn about any of that.

Another thing to consider is, if Senator Kelly Ayotte is correct that we already have enough laws and don’t need to pass any more bills, wouldn’t it make sense for all honest members of the senate and congress to resign and go home? Well, not Kelly.  She’s a woman.  After all, might she therefore have to take a cut in pay?