Excerpt: There has been public outrage in Germany after video footage emerged of two Jewish men being violently assaulted in an apparent anti-Semitic attack in central Berlin. The two men, who were both wearing kippah, traditional Jewish skullcaps, were insulted before being set upon and whipped with a belt in one of the city’s most fashionable neighbourhoods. A group of three unidentified men can be heard on the video clearly shouting “Yahudi”, the Arabic word for Jew. (diverse enough yet? ~Bob)
Excerpt: While America’s ruling and chattering classes were chasing Moose and Squirrel, back on planet Earth the Russians have been busy building a doomsday bomb. As Vladimir Putin alluded to in his March 1 address to the Federal Assembly, the Russians have developed, among other “superweapons,” a Doomsday Torpedo — an autonomous, unmanned stealth submarine armed with a 100-megaton thermonuclear warhead. For a sense of scale, 100 megatons is some 7,000 times more powerful than the bomb that destroyed Hiroshima. It’s twice as powerful as the biggest H-bomb ever built — the so-called Tsar Bomba, detonated by the Soviets on the Novaya Zemlya archipelago in October 1961. Adding a touch that is both Biblical and Carthaginian, the warhead is “salted” with cobalt and optimized to submerge the East Coast of the United States beneath a massive radioactive tidal wave, thereby rendering the Atlantic seaboard uninhabitable for centuries. To repeat, this new weapon is autonomous, suggesting potentially alarming new degrees of meaning in the words “Russian hacking scandal.”
employees are more valuable than others. Sorry if I’ve hurt your self-esteem
and bruised your feelings. It hurts my feelings that the New England Patriots
pay Tom Brady millions and won’t even give me a try-out. Okay, so I’m a LOT
older than Brady, in lousy shape compared to him, and lettered in chess in
college. Every human being is unique and equally valuable, right?
Tom Brady fills the stands and puts millions of fans in front of the TV on
Sunday, providing an excellent return on investment for his large salary. The
only entertainment value I’d provide would be for the lynch mob of fans hunting
me after my first appearance on the field.
valuable you may be to your family and friends, that doesn’t make you valuable
to an employer.
employers are looking for employees who provide value. Those who provide the
most value are the least likely to be cut in a downsizing, and the most likely
to receive raises and promotions, because the powers-that-be want to keep them
obvious, right? Then how come so many employees act like their job is a right,
and that they must be catered to?
really successful and valuable employees are always trying to make themselves
indispensable. Here are fifteen tips on becoming the indispensable employee.
Commit yourself to constant improvement. Perfection doesn’t exist, but
every organization and every individual can be better tomorrow then they are
today. Look at your job every Friday and ask yourself, “How can I do a better
job next week?” Then do it.
Commit yourself to life-long learning. Takes courses and read books and
journals that will help you do better in your area of specialty. But, equally
important, expand your horizon. Read widely in other areas as well. Study the
field that your organization operates in, so you understand the customers and
their problems. Study the jobs of your colleagues, so you understand—and
perhaps can help with—their problems. And study trends outside your industry
that may impact your organization. Yes, you can’t read or know everything. But
you can always read and know more.
Banish, “That’s not my job” from your vocabulary. Everything that helps
advance the mission is your job. The more you contribute in other areas, the
move valuable you will be.
Banish, “We’ve always done it that way” from your vocabulary. Nothing is
more constant that change. I was ten years into my professional career before I
had a computer, fifteen for a fax, over twenty for e-mail and the Internet. If
I was still doing things the way I’d done them then, I’d be unemployable.
Avoid gossip, drama and back-biting with your colleagues. It seems like
every office has a Drama Queen or King, who is constantly involved in small
feuds, has problems with colleagues, and is generally high maintenance. You
know who has to be tiptoed around. And the boss is dreaming about how nice life
would be if only that person could be moved on. Don’t let it be you.
Pitch in. Look for areas where you can help your colleagues with their
challenges. Do more than your share, especially of the unpleasant takes, the
“dirty jobs,” that are present in every employment situation. Don’t work in a
Banish Busy Work. Look for ways to be more efficient, so that
time-consuming, repetitive work can be eliminated from your schedule. Can
data-entry be computerized directly from the Web, or out-sourced overseas?
Having lots of busy work to do doesn’t make you valuable; it makes your job
fungible. There is always more valuable work available to fulfill the organization’s
mission. Getting rid of busy work will allow the boss to assign you more
Make the boss’s life easier. What skills can you apply, what can you
learn, what can you take on that will solve a problem for your supervisor?
Solving a couple of the boss’s problems every year will make you pretty
Be the “Go To” employee. If there’s a problem, and they think first of
getting you to work on it, they won’t think first of you if staff census needs
to be cut.
Keep a cheerful attitude. Sure, we all have problems. But people don’t
like to work with those whose hobby seems to be whining and complaining. Your
boss doesn’t either.
Go the extra mile for the customers. Don’t have to be pushed to do what
needs to be done to keep the customer happy. When you provide out-standing service,
they will mention it to your boss, who will appreciate you all the more.
Share the credit. When your supervisor says you did a great job on a
project, saying, “Well, I couldn’t have done it without Mary’s help” reflects
well on you, and makes you a star for Mary. Sincere compliments cost you
nothing and mean a lot to your colleagues.
Don’t try to outshine your colleagues. Say you have a great idea as to
how the department could improve service. At a staff meeting, in front of
everyone, you could pipe up and say, “Well, I think service could have
increased by….” Or you can go to the supervisor privately and say, “I have an
idea I was wondering if you’d thought about, that might help our our customer
service….” Which will serve you better in the long run?
It’s your organization too. Yes, we are fond of saying, “it’s the owners’
business.” But it’s also yours. And not just your little piece. Take ownership.
If your area is doing well, but your organization is floundering…your area is
NOT doing well. It’s like folks on the Titanic saying, “Well, the BOW may have
hit an iceberg, but we’re nice and dry here in the STERN!”
Be the most dependable person around. Under-promise and over-perform. If
you say you will do something, your supervisor should be comfortable forgetting
about it, because she knows it will be done well, on time.
you noticed, there is nothing on this list that you and I cannot do as well as
Tom Brady. And following these rules will make you an indispensable association
Robert A. Hall, was a five term Massachusetts state senator,
an association executive for 31 years, and currently (at 72 after a lung
transplant) works PT at the A as a Writer-Editor, interviewing veterans about
their lives, writing it up for their records and giving them copies for their
Great letter. I wrote this for my next Random Thoughts: Vietnam Veterans take note. In 50 years, the children and grandchildren of those tearing down Confederate memorials will tear down the Vietnam Memorial Wall, because the people on it died fighting progressive principles and the agrarian reformers under Uncle Ho. They will put up a statute to him. Viet Vets will be considered then as dead Confederate are now.
Excerpt: President Obama’s critics excoriated the deal, but they have been proved wrong. The chemical weapons are now out of the hands of a brutal dictator — and all without firing a shot. (Right. ~Bob)
Excerpt: Forty-six years ago today, an NYPD cop named Phillip Cardillo was gunned down inside a Nation of Islam mosque in Harlem. No one ever served a day in jail for the crime. And for 46 years, the NYPD has been withholding evidence in his murder case from the public. It’s time they come clean.
Mindboggling nastiness rejoicing at the death of Barbara Bush
Wow, when you start to think you've heard as much about crazy, nasty professors as there is to hear, along comes another one to really take the prize. This woman spouts hatred of the late First Lady Bush, and revels in the pain to her husband and family of her passing. And boasts about ow much money she makes as a tenured professor who can say anything she wants. I shudder to think of young minds exposed to her in classes. -Del
The speaker refers to a very reasonable code of ethics which essentially forbids public school teachers from politicizing their classrooms. One might say that this would be an abuse of a teacher's intellectual freedom and First Amendment rights. But this would be wrong. K-12 education is governed by the states and their local school boards which are responsible for turning out educated young adults who are taught an approved curriculum. Public education is not the place for public servants to wield political influence. Younger minds are easily malleable and even when students are intellectually sophisticated, their performance can be easily manipulated by teachers who exercise much influence over the students' futures. If it is right to teach white privilege, why shouldn't teachers be intellectually free to teach that the Democrat party is nothing more than a guild for slavery, the KKK, Jim Crow laws and a welfare state to keep minorities sequestered in ghettos? Both are overstepping the role of a public primary-secondary educator. It is hard to be neutral in teaching history, civics, economics and English, but that is the job of good educators.Yours truly, Larry Greenberg
In June of '68 I was recovering from being wounded, but working still at the Division Photolab. My best buddy, who'd been with me on the day I got hit, was John Pennington, and he and the young photog who took over my field slot were on their way to Khe Sanh. On the rugged road part way
there, they were ambushed, starting with a big command detonated mine that blew away the truck they were on a killed everyone on it. We got the news and went into as much mourning as you can do in the middle of a
John's younger brother George had volunteered for the Navy and became a Corpsman. He served with one of the battalions that was sometimes offshore and brought in for operations, I can no longer remember which it was.
The next morning George showed up at Division to see his beloved older brother, they had been strongly bonded since they were very little boys. We had to break the news to him, and it was devastating. I had some strong rum sent to me by a friend in Missouri, and proceeded that afternoon and evening to get him drunk enough so he could break down and
cry bitterly, as he needed to. It was a long night.
Our OIC pulled some strings and George was on a plane back to Utah the next day, arrived home still in jungle utilities, filthy, but there with all the family, parents and siblings. John's body arrived later and was buried on a nice hill with a view of the valley.
When I came home I stopped for a couple days there to visit the grave and the family. We became close and have been in contact ever since. I took the pictures at the weddings of George's daughters, visited them when they were overseas in Germany for years. He came to see us last Fall in Asheville, and I made sure to go see him back in January when I was in CA on business. He had aged a lot, but seemed to be hanging in there. As always, it was great to see him. You develop special bonds different ways, we were both Nam vets, we both loved his brother, we shared values about this nation, our families, and so much more.
My phone rang ten minutes ago, it was George's youngest daughter. He was found dead in his home earlier today, they don't know the cause yet, but he did have several health problems.
First, I thank God for the total off chance that let me go see him so recently. And second.... dammit, I'll miss him Departures like his leave a kind of hole in our lives that doesn't quite fill in even over time. God bless him, and keep him in peace and joy and with John again. When the funeral comes, if there's a way to get there, I'll be there and do some of the eulogy. He deserves to have another vet say some of the
things that should be said so that others will really understand at least a little better who he was.
Excerpt: The matter now under investigation by the FBI and federal prosecutors in the Southern District of New York (SDNY), however, is a very live criminal investigation. Anyone potentially connected to it should be worried.
It’s a good thing environmentalists have double standards – or they wouldn’t have any standards at all. Empire State legislators worry that anything above the current 0.0001% methane in Earth’s atmosphere will cause catastrophic climate change, and that pipelines will disturb wildlife habitats. So they oppose fracking for natural gas in New York and pipelines that would import the clean fuel from Pennsylvania. But then they bribe or force rural and vacation area communities to accept dozens of towering wind turbines that impact thousands of acres, destroy scenic views, kill thousands of birds and bats annually, and affect the sleep and health of local residents – to generate pricey intermittent electricity that is sent on high voltage transmission lines to Albany, Manhattan and other distant cities. Meanwhile, developers are building a 600-mile pipeline to bring natural gas from West Virginia to North Carolina, to power generating plants that provide low-cost electricity almost 24/7/365. (Environmentalism is a good and necessary idea But it needs to be done as logically, factually, and objectively as possible. Unfortunately, emotionalism has taken over a huge part of it. When people are emotional they only notice what they want to, whether it's entirely real or not, and absolutely don't notice what they don't want to, no matter how real it is. There won't be any "significant" downsides to solar and wind power in their view, it will all bring in a new age of purity in now we support our energy-rich lives. And that's all they see. I worry that if this doesn't get brought under some level of careful thinking and implementation, we can wind up with a huge mess in the next 30 years. --Del)
Excerpt: The photos and videos showing dozens of Syrian people and their children suffocating, slumped to the ground, lifeless, after what is likely to be a chemical attack in Douma, east of Damascus, shook the world this past Saturday. In the meantime, Syria, the same power being accused of carrying the deadly attack, will assume the presidency of the U.N.’s Conference on Disarmament, the forum which produced the treaty banning chemical weapons, opening in Geneva on March 28. (Why do we keep sending money to these enemies of humans? Yours truly. Larry Greenberg)
Well, we dodged most of the storm so far. 6" to 10" predicted last night, only got 2" to 3" over the ice that came down earlier. Still snowing hard at 10 am. Some places in Wisconsin predicted to get up to 30". Happy 72nd birthday to me!
Excerpt: A Kennewick father of four is on trial for an August attack that left his wife with 23 stab wounds. Abdul Rahman Sweidan, 47, appeared Monday morning in Benton County Superior Court before an initial pool of 100 jurors. ... Sweidan, who is from Syria, has been assigned two Arabic interpreters for the trial. The interpreters trade places next to Sweidan every 20 minutes. Deputy prosecutors and defense attorneys said Monday that immigration will be a question for potential jurors during selection to make sure they do not have feelings against Sweidan or his wife, Dania Z. Alhafeth, because of the couple’s status.
Madison, Wisconsin. 8:00 pm. April 14. Small ice pebbles coming down, forecast for 5" to 8" of ice and snow tonight, another 3" to 5" tomorrow. So far, coldest April on record, averaging about 14 degrees below normal. Much worse north of us. Minneapolis set an April snowfall record, smashing the 1883 record. Happy Spring! ~Bob
Excerpt: Economically speaking, you should pray to whatever you may believe in that conservatives do not leave this country, they will take virtually every American corporation with them because economically conservative policy is far more attractive for them. Virtually, no business could thrive in a left wing society. There is minimal growth and has always lead to a downward spiral. And to take your question more literally, history will tel you that when "change" is wanted or needed, those people typically start their own nation and don't successfully change the existing nation when they are the far minority. Yes, you are the minority- the very outspoken minority. The most interesting thing about countries that attempt to pull off socialist ideas is that they have the most strict immigration rules. You need to be skilled, ready to work, and your skills must match their needs if you want to get in. But the left wingers in America that want socialism/communism also want open borders. It is a comical flaw in nearly all of their arguments.
Excerpt: Ryan’s departure will not be mourned by Democrats or Trump loyalists. The Democrats caricatured Ryan as the goon throwing granny in her wheelchair off a cliff. They actually ran TV ads with a Ryan lookalike. Barack Obama singled him out for scorn at a White House meeting, claiming later that he was unaware Ryan was in the front row. You might suppose that that would be enough to make Ryan a conservative hero, but life is often unjust, and when Trump came along, Ryan found himself a sudden symbol of the reviled “Republican establishment.” Though the anti-Ryan vitriol faded after Steve Bannon’s defenestration, he continued to be viewed with suspicion by the talk-radio crowd and other arms of Trump Inc.
Excerpt: IS demanded that the woman convert to Islam, she said. She refused. An IS leader, the emir, held a knife to her head and ordered her to convert. Again she refused, strong in her faith. She argued that under Islam, there was no obligation to convert.