20080220

Americans for Decency

I have a problem with Americans for Decency. I have a problem with some of the things they do. Please note the bolded items in their mission statement:
A for D is an alliance of concerned citizens including civic, business, religious, health care, and educational organizations. Our goal is to significantly reduce sexual violence and victimization of children, women, men and families. We seek to accomplish this by educating how to have good families, by educating about the danger and harm of pornography, by providing a home for victims of abuse; by mobilizing concerned citizens to action, by working cooperatively with justice officials to enforce obscenity/child protection laws, and by giving assistance to victims.

I highlighted those words because they imply the Christian ideal of a family; man + woman + children = family. This is of concern because they force their religious views on their community. As an example here is the latest info for their state/national page:
  • HB2002 Employment Discrimination. This bill which seeks to add the words “Gender, Gender Identity or Expression, and Sexual Orientation” as illegal in hiring would make not only homosexuals but those who want to express themselves as another gender acceptable. Once allowed they can apply for special government funding.
  • SB1102 Parental Consent Abortion This bill seeks to obtain parental consent to receive abortions.
  • College students in Utah got offended by the Gold's Gym TV network and petitioned the Gold's Gym management (which has no control over the content of the music video put out by the company) to change the videos to G or PG rated.
  • Protesting a Planned Parenthood commercial aired on MTV & VH-1 because the commercial was "selling sex to kids".
My comments:
  • The first Arizona House Bill would protect people from being discriminated upon, this is after all an allegedly equal country.
  • The second House Bill would create another barrier to safe abortions. Forcing children to go through what may be neo-conservative Christian parents would be a big obstacle to personal health and well being.
  • The third item is just silly. Really it is.
  • The fourth is also silly because Planned Parenthood does good work and their would be less abortions and less unplanned pregnancies if more people listened to Planned Parenthood.
They have even attacked and tried to shut down a modest and currently inactive blog: SEX
Unfortunately we may never be rid of these neo-conservative Christians claiming that everything they do is for the love of god. Pity.
Religion does ruin everything.

20080219

Promote yourself

There are lots of ways to promote yourself.

internet, domain names, t shirts, business cards, etc.

One great way to promote yourself and to build relationships is to talk to other people and really "sell" yourself and what you can do.

Some suggestions:
  • Add value to yourself
  • Be confident in yourself and in your abilities
  • Make every word count by not wasting time
  • Explain what you do
  • Tell the person what you want them to do
  • Maintain the relationship you just established!

Be sure to read the entire article for all the details.


Here is what I do to promote myself:
  • website
  • business cards
  • happily greet people

Participate in some research

You are invited to participate in a research study conducted by Dr. Christopher Wharton in the Department of Nutrition at Arizona State University. The purpose of the study is to learn about people’s perceptions of information about weight loss that is available in the media.
Participation is of course voluntary and your information will remain confidential. Participation only requires completing a one-time survey which should take less than 30 minutes of your time. For participating in this study you will have the opportunity to enter your name into a drawing for a chance to win a brand new iPod!
To participate, follow this link: http://chap.syr.edu/ASUsecure/sswelcome.aspx

Discover your strengths and weaknesses

External feedback and performance reviews can only go so far in helping you discover your shortcomings, set improvement goals, and build on your strengths. Sometimes, you also need to take a hard, honest look at your performance and ask, "Would I hire myself for this job?"

Knowing yourself, your skills, and your experience -- and knowing the job (since you're already doing it) -- you're well positioned to ask, "Am I the best, practical choice for the job I have or could my organization do better?"

For this strategy to work, you have to ask yourself the tough questions and answer them truthfully. Although those questions will vary from job to job, here are some that might work for you. If nothing else, they will give you an idea of the kinds of questions you should be asking yourself if you're serious about excelling in your work.

  1. Technology changes everyday. Can you list three examples of things you're doing to keep your technical knowledge current?
  2. Your boss has a family emergency that's going to keep him or her out of the office for a week.
  3. Your boss can call only one person to keep things running until he or she returns. Are you the one who gets that phone call? If so, why? If not, why not? What specific steps have you taken over the past six months to either increase the performance of the bottom 20 percent of your staff or to move them to positions where they can be successful?
  4. When was the last time you talked with the account reps for your three largest vendors?
  5. What specific steps have you taken over the past six months to keep your star performers on board and motivated?
  6. If your group services internal clients, what do they think of the work your department is doing?
  7. Are you guessing or have you actually asked them in the last 30 days? If you suddenly get sick, do you have a subordinate you could trust to keep things moving until you get back?
  8. When was the last time you checked on the financial stability of the outsourcing firms you use?
  9. Do you know which of your department's projects is furthest behind schedule? Do you know why?
  10. Consider your direct reports. Does each of them know what your top three priorities are for them?
  11. Consider your boss. When was the last time he or she asked you to take over a special project? If it's been more than six months, why do you think that is?
  12. Can you list three things you're doing to help HR with recruitment or retention?
  13. Personal networking is important for you and your organization. What professional associations do you belong to, and how active are you in them?

20080214

Must have Qualities for President

My list of "qualities" or positions that the next president of the United States must have for me to be willing to vote.
  • Stop the Iraq War, bring the troops home immediately.
  • Implement a national health care system, single payer form.
  • Design and Initiate a guaranteed income for all American families, working or not.
  • Cap and REDUCE corporate profits and executive salary levels WHILE FOSTERING THE TRANSFER OF CORPORATE PRODUCTION AND SERVICE, AND OWNERSHIP AND CONTROL TO ITS WORKERS.
  • Mandate labor union representation for all American workers to assure fair salaries and equal benefits.
  • Implement a national housing plan for all Americans.
  • Encourage fair trade over free trade and stop America's participation in NAFTA, CAFTA, WORLD TRADE ORGANIZATION, WORLD BANK, IMF, etc.
  • Stop the gouging and ripoffs of consumers by legislating limits and caps for costs in services and products in the market place.
  • Abolish poverty in all its forms in America by assuring every American family with the basics in income, health, education and housing.
  • Promote a more equitable society by enhancing citizens rights and participatory control while requiring the private sector to practice and implement a fairer economic system of consumer costs, profit-margins and regulation and policing of its services and products.
  • Reduce Defense spending significantly in the areas of high tech and military equipment and weaponry while enhancing protections and benefits for the common soldier.
  • Reinforce and enhance government support of the arts, sports and culture.
  • Respect and assure the equal rights of all citizens, whether it be in the area of gender, race, age, sexual preference or religion. Eliminate special privileges for any and all interest groups.
  • Promote universal access to education on the college and vocational school level. Promote liberal arts, along with engineering and science, in colleges and universities. Remove the influence of corporate and military entities on our higher institutes of learning.
  • Promote and enhance a multi-party system, public and fair access to debates and public funding of elections.
  • Support a parent's right to choose in matters of abortion; and oppose all restrictions on access to abortion.
  • Opposes the U.S. embargo against Cuba, and call for ending all travel restrictions to the island.
  • Close all U.S. military facilites that train foreign military and paramilitary personnel.
  • Immediately withdrawal from Iraq & Afghanistan
  • End U.S. occupation of Guantanamo, Cuba
  • Call for an end to the Israeli occupation of the West Bank-East Jerusalem and Gaza, and all U.S. aid to Israel, as a precondition for peace.
  • Cutoff all U.S. military aid to Colombia
  • Abolish CIA, NSA, Homeland Security Agency and all other covert warfare institutions
  • Call for unconditional disarmament by the U.S.
  • Call for treaty outlawing all weapons of mass destruction
  • Call for immediate 50% cut in the military budget, with priority given to social services
  • Disband NATO
  • End U.S. arms sales in world.
  • Pay off U.S. debts to UN
  • Advocate constitutional amendment requiring binding vote of people on all issues of war or military intervention.
  • Support right of soldiers to form unions
  • Support right of workers to form a union anywhere
  • Support right to strike
  • Recognize union based on cards signed
  • All workers have a right to collective bargaining
  • Repeal of the Hatch Act and Taft-Hartley Act, landrum-griffin Act and "right-to-work" laws.
  • Same benefits for full and part-time workers
  • 30 hour work week, six weeks annual paid vacation
  • Stop using union funds for electing candidates from the Democratic and Republican parties.
  • Give equal rights to all immigrants and recognize their presence in large part is due to unfair U.S. economic policies toward their countries, war, famine, or bad human conditions.
  • Give sanctuary to illegal immigrants in the U.S., full social services and impact immigration influx not with walls or guns or threats of imprisonment, but with fairer policies toward all other countries to enable their economies to thrive and expand as well.
  • Support arts and culture, universal education, single payer health system,
  • Right of all people to high quality, low cost housing
  • Public transportation in urban and rural area such as rail systems, foot and bicycle paths, pedestrian ways, renewable fuels and control of the airline industry and its public ownership
  • Worker and community ownership and control of corporations
  • Minimum wage of $15 per hour
  • Support livable guaranteed annual income
  • Re-regulate banking and insurance industries; and all financial and insurance institutions to be socially owned and operated by a democratically controlled national banking authority
  • Call for a steeply graduated income tax and estate tax, and a maximum income of no more than 10 times minimum.
  • Cancel 3rd world debt
  • Expand welfare assistance and unemployment compensation
  • Support massive federal investment in urban and rural infrastructure's reconstruction and economic development, and more
  • Public ownership and democratic control of all natural resources to preserve wilderness areas and restore environmental quality.
  • Support Kyoto Protocol and participate in controlling global warming, clean up of toxic wastes, and protect workers and communities from any harmful products.
  • Phase out all nuclear power plants, shut down waste incinerators, landfills and open-pit mining.
  • Support large-scale environmental restoration efforts.
  • Develop alternative energy sources including solar, geothermal, wind, hydropower, and biomass to end dependency on fossil fuels.
  • Ensure all people have access to utility services
  • Mandatory encapsulation of all spent nuclear fuel, etc. and ban on all nuclear materials
  • Support system of ecologically based, sustainable, organic agriculture based on family farms and farming cooperatives guaranteeing full workers' rights, etc.
  • End all restrictions in law and work place, marriages and sodomy laws
  • Prevent student violence and discrimination in schools and all of society
  • Federal ban on all forms of job discrimination, on the basis of race, sexual orientation, gender or economic status
  • Oppose English as the only official language

Conservatives Boo the idea of...

Radical Conservatives Boo the idea of a woman or black man becoming president of the United States
"We cannot allow the next president of the US to retreat in the face of evil extremism"
evil extremism = Islam
next president of the US = Obama or Clinton


McCain Booed at CPAC

McCain booed by radical extremist conservative Republicans after mentioning "illegal immigration" at Conservative Political Action Conference.


20080211

US Subprime lenders target poor

This just in:

US Banks target blacks and or poor people for predatory loans.

A good friend of mine pointed this article out to me.
Essentially these banks target minorities and people with low incomes as "prime candidates" for predatory loans.
The report estimated the total loss of wealth "for people of color" including Latinos to be between 163 and 278 billion dollars for subprime loans taken out during the past eight years.

The report's authors said many blacks and poor Americans were deliberately targeted by lenders marketing a range of money-making home loans that were sometimes confusing for borrowers to understand.

Some economists believe the almost two-year-long housing slump could pitch the world's largest economy into a recession.


So its the bloody banks' fault for selling their predatory loans, that we are in a recession or at least close to one.

READ ON

Are we still live from WQAD?

Yes. We are very much live.

Back in October last year I called attention to a useful candidate picker that WQAD had came up with. According to their widget, I should have voted for Dennis Kucinich. He dropped out before I could vote for him.

Otherwise, definitely check it out:
Live from wqad


By the way, I'm #5 on the list when searching for WQAD: