Political comment on American Weenies

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As I was invited by others on the forum to express my views, here goes, you may shoot me down all you like. We have turned into a bunch of whiny assed complainers who expect "Others" to do every thing and take all responsibility and face all dangers for us. What happened to us? One of the prime examples is all the whining and now lawsuits,instigated by our postal workers. Now I know that is a terrible thing to have some bastard thugs attack our country and send that Anthrax crap through the mail. And it is a sad thing that some of our American Citizens were infected with it and some have died. However, tracking down and investigating this mess is not an easy job. It is no different from homicide detectives trying to solve a murder. You have to follow the clues and wait for things to present themselves. No one knew that the bacteria was on the OUTSIDE of those envelopes. Up until all that hit the fan, it was thought that you had to open one to be exposed. Now our authorities know better and are trying to keep up. Are those postal workers helping themselves with this? Oh no, they want someone else to take all of the responsibility and although they were alerted and had the option of washing their hands and using gloves they did not. So, now they are whining and complaining that it is all class(read "race") related and they are not being treated with the same expertise and promptness as the more" important" people. Puh-lease people! Are we parking our cars who kill more of us than any combination of germs do? Are we killing off the family dogs who kill more Americans than these bacteria will? These Postal workers are in more danger from their fellow workers who, when the urge strikes them, take up weapons and go to their workplace and happily mow down their compatriots with bullets, than they are from this bacteria! (I find it ironic that it may take something like Anthrax to teach us Americans to wash our hands. If we all did, frequently, we would see the common cold and the flu virtually disappear. We know now that the pathogens which give us colds etc. spread by our hands touching our faces, thats it.) I have worked around and with dangerous viruses, bacterias, fungi etc all my working life. I have never caught any of them and haven't had a cold in 15 years. Use common sense. Get a grip you people and shape up! Stand up on your hind legs and act like Americans!

-- Little Quacker (carouselxing@juno.com), October 27, 2001


(Applause)... :o)

-- notnow (notnow05@yahoo.com), October 27, 2001.

Great post, LQ! Wooo-hooo!

-- Cheryl in KS (cherylmccoy@rocketmail.com), October 27, 2001.

I'm a vegetarian, so that makes me a non-weenie, right?

Little Quacker, you must remember that the first response to violence or pain is recoil, perhaps death. This is simply an emotional outlet to that horrible action. It is healthy. Would you rather have a nation on Maalox or strung out on anti-depressants? After the shock subsides a bit, then people use their trained minds to come up with personal plans. Give Americans a chance to recover. Talking is the least harmful way to solve problems, including purging oneself of fear.

As for the Postal Workers' lawsuits, well, let's just say that the union has jumped on this issue in a timely manner and will do whatever they need to do to bring "their" issues to the forefront of the American public mind. I, for one, don't believe that the average Joe needs the unions anymore. They seem to promote a lazy work force instead of helping to protect workers rights. Just my opinion.

Sincerely in Peace, Iris

P.S. "... act like Americans" Americans aren't the only brave peoples in the world. Some would say that acting in that manner is a very dangerous and violent thing to do. Wouldn't it be better to say "...act like peace-loving people"?

-- Iris (SarIndia@msn.com), October 27, 2001.

Yes, Iris, I guess being a vega does make you safe from being a weenie! LOL These Postal workers are not just talking. Talking and discussion is good. I think our society is losing its backbone. There is no need to initiate lawsuits over this or natter and complain to everyone that you are not being treated fair and blame everyone else for the problem. We can handle this sort of thing with a little starch in our spines instead of all complaining and finger pointing. I think those workers need to show a little class and shape up!

-- Little Quacker (carouselxing@juno.com), October 27, 2001.

Iris, I think being a vegeterian means that you have to be a "tofu-pup"...a "not-dog"...or maybe "vega-weenie"? :)

LQ, I have not worked around viruses and bacteria all my working life and if somebody told me that they had found anthrax spores where I work but not to worry about it AND that somebody was a Government employee...I'd probably call in healthy and stay home till they figured it out. I have children who want me to come home at night which is why I don't volunteer to be in the trenches. If the trenches come to me I'll have no shame in staying out of work for a few days until the "science can catch up"...you can call me all the names you want.

-- gilly (wayoutfarm@skybest.com), October 27, 2001.

Thought you had some good thoughts in you article. One of the answers sent me thinking on another idea though. We don't need unions anymore ???? What type of work does this person do ?? Now don't all get anti-union crazy on me here. Perhaps some of us are fortunate enough not to need unions in our daily work place. There are a lot of very good companies that take excellent care of their employees and then no unions would be needed. Unions were begun to stop the abuse of the workers. My husband and father were fortunate enough to almost always be union men. We have 100% full coverage with medical and dental with no cost at all to us...oh yes,...we pay union dues. $9.75 a week. Can't complain about that plus the pensions and many other benefits. If it were not for unions I am afraid many of us would be working a 20 hour day in horrible conditions. Read a book a few years back called "The Jungle" can't remember who wrote it but seemed to remember he probably was a famous author. The working conditions in slaughter houses....you should all read that one !! Many other industries would be in big trouble to without the unions. Yes, I know there are some union people that "play" the union for there own benefit but not all of them/us are lazy people. On American people getting a grip on things....I really don't think many people that aren't personnally affected think too much about these problems. As long as their lives are OK they don't seem to worry. Head in the Sand attitude I guess. May be good or may be bad ?? Had a women at work the other night ( I'm not in a union....OK, a nurse...yes...hand washing is the best defense against fighting germs!!) and she said that her son said he would not go with the draft if they do start it up again if called to do so. I asked her what she thought about her son's decesions...she couldn't really answer me. That is what upsets me with people....they love the good life but let's not ask me to give...and yes even maybe my life...for what I have enjoyed for so many years. It's hard yes I know that. Presently had a son-in-law in the Army so I live with the fear of something happening to him daily...but he choose that..and I know the draft isn't a choice for young men...but if that is what we must do to keep our country safe and free...that is the price we all will have to pay. Guess I'll get off my soapbox for now. Thanks for listening !!!

-- Helena Di Maio (windyacs@ptdprolog.net), October 27, 2001.

I think Iris needs to work with an union to see what goes on there. LAzy ???? Dont think so. UNions get jobs done faster , safer, and cheaper than their non union conterparts. Ive been in a union for going on 10 years, and have done some jobs that IM proud of to drive ny and look at. There are some I cringe when I get close to, but thats the compnay's fault,, not the unions. And dont forget,, YOU are part of the largest UNION in the world. Called the UNited States of America.

-- stan (sopal@net-port.com), October 27, 2001.

Unions are what help to make us noncompetitive with the rest of the world. I do not deny that they were once necessary (Upton Sinclair wrote The Jungle), but today they serve more to protect people who should be fired for incompetence from getting fired for incompetence.

It should be noted that many really successful businesses (Microsoft, Wal-Mart) in this country are by and large not unionized.

Just a thought.

-- GT (nospam@nospam.com), October 27, 2001.

and look what they do for the US, nothing,,low paying jobs, and sell junk, chinese junk, overseas junk. Who do you think has gotton the minimum wage raised they last 4 times??? UNIONS,, so,, your welcome

-- stan (sopal@net-port.com), October 27, 2001.

I guess if one considers a 'successful' business one which has a good bottom line and multi-million dollar salaries for its top brass while paying minimum wage to the people who do their real work, so be it. It doesnt fit MY definition, however.

-- Earthmama (earthmama48@yahoo.com), October 27, 2001.

GT, want to work for Wal-mart??? Go for it man, not me. Little Quacker, don't know what it is that you do for a living, micro biologist or something?? Bashing the Postal Workers for wanting a safe place to work is pretty low as far as I am concerned. I think they made a really valid point and apparently those outside of this country think so also; if you care at all about what the rest of the world thinks. What attitudes we have about our working people!!! The congressmen when running home with their cipro and no one paid attention at all to the postal workers until they started dying. I would be pretty pissed off if I were them also.

-- diane (gardiacaprines@yahoo.com), October 27, 2001.

Talk to "mere secretaries" at Microsoft and other internet companies who got rich off of stock options, and the same can be said for Wal- Mart employees who invested in stock plans. Those people took risks and they were rewarded for doing so.

The US can beat anyone with technology--sometimes that can mean fewer of the dinosaur jobs that unions tend to protect, but it opens the door to skilled labor that can earn you more money. "Union made" does not always mean "better made". There's a reason that import cars sell better in this country, and it has little to do with cheap labor. They are better-made vehicles. The US is catching up, but very slowly.

Unions may help some people, but I never found them useful enough to ever want to join one. If you want to make more money, improve your skills and get different job.

-- GT (nospam@nospam.com), October 27, 2001.

foreign cars sell better, cause they are made cheaper, by paying 3 dollars for a days 12 hours work. So they can ship them here, and sell them cheaper. If it wasnt for unions, ,you would still be making 5 bucks an hour (TOPS) and 14 hours days, along with your kids, grandparents, wife and everyone.

-- stan (sopal@net-port.com), October 27, 2001.

I DO support the unions, if one were offered at my work I would join in a heartbeat. However, I am wary of union lies and deceit. It pisses me off when I see a lazy, incompetent worker that deserves to be fired and it's IMPOSSIBLE to get rid of that worker. I see it all the time. Unions are great but they need to be realistic and fair. They also need to stop living in the past. All these claims about poor working conditions, long hours, unsafeness, etc etc etc are now covered, well covered, by a slew of federal and state laws.


-- gene ward (gward34847@aol.com), October 27, 2001.

By the way, thats's why I'm against federalizing airport security. There will be a lot of lazy incompetent people attracted to the idea of a federal job, and it will be IMPOSSIBLE to fire a bad worker, and let me tell you, airport security is a job that REQUIRES competent workers.


-- gene ward (gward34847@aol.com), October 27, 2001.

By the way, thats's why I'm against federalizing airport security. There will be a lot of lazy incompetent people attracted to the idea of a federal job, and it will be IMPOSSIBLE to fire a bad worker, and let me tell you, airport security is a job that REQUIRES competent workers.

However, if there were an exception made, a legal part of law, that would allow prompt and fair removal of a bad worker, then I might reconsider it. In other words, a federal worker not covered by all that bull***t protection that CAN be fired.


-- gene ward (gward34847@aol.com), October 27, 2001.

Very well said, Gene. Iris

-- Iris (Sar_India@msn.com), October 27, 2001.


I was a federal civil service employee for over 20-years. During that time I know of four people who were fired. An Afro-American woman secretary for attitude as much as anything else (she dared her boss to fire her thinking her race would protect her), two white males for continued sexual harrassment and a white male for making threats against supervisors. A co-worker was basically forced to retire since he simply refused to adapt to using a PC rather than a calculator.

A favorite method is to full their security clearance, which makes them no longer qualified for their job. The USAF used a procedure which seems common. Without previous warning two Security Policy would show up at a cubicle and hand the employee a termination letter. The employee was not able to touch their PC or to take anything besides their coat with them. They were escorted out to their vehicle and make to take off their parking permit decal. If parked on base, they were escorted off of it.

All federal employees are under an annual evaluation method, which varies slightly from department to department. For us, we were rated Superior, Excellent, Fully Successful, Minimally Acceptable or Unacceptable based on an annual performance plan which contained both critical and non-critical factors. Admittedly, probably 99% of employees graded Fully Successful or above, which certainly violates the bell-shaped curve principle.

A new federal employee is under a 90-day probation period and can be fired during that time without the government having to make a strong case for it.

It may take a year or so, but federal employees can be fired. (Remember President Reagan firing all of the air traffic controllers who when out on strike!)

That said, I don't think airport security workers should be federal employees. They can be contract employees under strict requirements, full-background checks and periodic drug testing. (I had to pee in a cup while someone watched once.)

The major problem with airport security was they would hire just about anyone at minimum wage. Old joke was if you can't get hired at McD's go out and apply at the airport. Employee quality was low and turnover was high. I understand all of the major airport security companies have basically doubled wages to try to attract a higher caliber of employee.

On Anthrax being spread in Post Offices, I don't think it is all that hard to figure out. Try this experiment. Take a business-size envelope, a sheet of paper and some flour. Put the flour on the paper, fold it in thirds, put it in the envelope and seal it in the normal manner. Now lay the envelope on the counter and smack it with the palm of your hand several times. It is extremely likely you will see traces of the flour coming out of the upper corners. As the envelopes were sorted through the equipment, the compression and decompression basically acted as a bellows.

Where did it come from? Hummm, let's see. Mail can come to the UN or NYC embassy branch in a dipomatic pouch, which isn't subject to any inspection. The UN is right across the river from New Jersey. It would seem to be fairly easy to have had an agent cross the river to drop envelopes into mailboxes.

By the way, USPS is a quasi-governmental agency. They are not supported with taxpayer monies, having to generate their own revenue under a break-even concept. They have their own rules for hiring/firing and can go out on strike, unlike regular federal employees.

I think they have somewhat of a legimate beef they were treated different than Congressional workers. Suing is a way for that to be determined in court.

-- Ken S. in WC TN (scharabo@aol.com), October 28, 2001.


Postal workers are NOT allowed to go out on strike. Other than that they are required to break even on their budget (unlike other governmental agencies), they are just like other federal workers as far as benefits and job protections, in other words, it is so difficult to get fired for cause that many managers don't even try except for attendance, and even that gets argued to death by the unions.

The only reason the air traffic controllers were fired was because they did not return to work after repeated chances were given to them. Federal workers (and postal workers) sign a contract in which it says that they are not allowed to strike. The air traffic controllers breached their contract, so they got what they deserved.

I think all governmental employees (even at city level) and direct contract employees (transit, bus drivers contracted by school districts, etc.) should be subject to binding arbitration and not allowed to strike. Private companies can do what they wish, subject to their union agreements if they have any.

-- GT (nospam@nospam.com), October 28, 2001.

Call me a Communist or whatever you want, but our family has been self-employed ever since they came over here on the boat 100 years ago (farmers, contractors, truck drivers etc.) and we think any organization that "protects" workers from being fired when they are slaking off on the job and sleeping three days out of five has no real purpose here in America. You do the job as asked for, or you're outta here!!!

I'm a hillbilly from W.V. too, my grandfather got around the crappy mine working conditions and bad pay by buying land and digging his own coal out of the ground and selling it!!! Use your own brain, don't pay someone else money to "protect" your job and so called "rights" as a worker. Have some initiative, BE THE BOSS!!!

-- Annie Miller in SE OH (annie@1st.net), October 28, 2001.

all this from people who have problaby never worked for a unoin in there life.

-- stan (sopal@net-port.com), October 29, 2001.

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