Tuesday, February 22, 2011

General Musings Part 16

Aaaah! Tons of links & so little time to write on things. I have to delete some of them since I just got my computer back from the repair place about a week ago & it messed up right after Christmas during the massive blizzard.

So first off, I have to rant about some terrible treatment at the Chick-Fil-A in Paramus, NJ. Now I have to go to this Chick-Fil-A since there are NONE in NYC. Politics notwithstanding*, the food is very good & in all my years of going I had never had terrible service there.

Until last week....

As a tradition, my mother gets us the Chick-Fil-A calendar every year for Christmas. Even though it's a huge pain in the ass to get to Paramus from my home for a full service Chick-Fil-A, the cow centerfolds are creative & amusing. One year, they had cows in reality shows. There was also one with cows in literary classics & as superheroes. Good stuff, really.

Every month, there's a coupon for some food offer. I took mine to this particular Chick-Fil-A only to have the cashier try to rip me off & deny me the full value of the coupon. I spoke up because I'm a loud mouth who doesn't like being cheated. After some fighting, I got an alternate item since they didn't have the item on the coupon that I would have liked to try.

I contacted Chick-Fil-A's main headquarters as well as the store operator, Ken Walsh. I left a message with someone there. I also got a nice message from Chick-Fil-A's headquarters a few days back saying they'd contacted this guy as well about my gripes (I also mentioned the poor mixing of ice cream products, as I had a milkshake there that tasted awful but the same one in NC was much better).

But do you think this man has contacted me? NO!!!!! It really makes me not want to go to that location again & more pissed off that there isn't a Chick-Fil-A in NYC or even Long Island. A secret unofficial location at NYU doesn't cut it; they're not even open year round & when I wanted to go on my birthday, that one was closed for NYU's winter break.

* Rest assured that if I ever owned a Chick-Fil-A franchise, I'd be doing everything possible to support the gay community & flouting any anti-gay rhetoric since I happen to believe in not sticking your nose into other people's relationships/lifestyle choices where they are not personally harming you & yours. I'm not going to boycott since if I went around boycotting every single company that did something I'm morally opposed to, I'd have to become homeless or live in the wilderness with no technology or modern conveniences of any kind.

Next up, this story. Believe me, I'm just as shocked as you that some "women's issue" article actually has grains of truth in it.

Now, this kind of bothers me. I hate, HATE the "role model" argument. That argument is what I call an abdication of parental duties & responsibility.

If your child starts admiring a baseball player who chews tobacco, how about you get off your fat butt & show your child the results of doing that?? You can get oral cancer & some pretty nasty stuff in and around your mouth. I've heard enough stories about chewing tobacco to want to stay as far away as possible from anyone who does it. I'm sure someone's got some gross images on the Internet or a doctor could scare your child enough not to start doing it.

Furthermore, I'm of the belief that we don't need to run around protecting adults from their own harmful choices. I say let the drug addicts take all the drugs they want & let smokers smoke as many cigarettes as they want to in their own space without endangering or harming other people (let the proper people make this happen like taking children away from drug addicts).

That is Darwinism at work, meaning fewer people to drain resources, live in houses, commit crime, be horrible parents, whatever. If someone I don't know wants to get high badly enough, why should I try & stop them? If they don't care about their own life any more than that, then why should anyone else care? Face it, people do have free will & if someone wants to harm themselves badly enough while refusing to get any kind of help or listening to reason, let them. They'll either hit rock bottom & seek help or die.

Now this I never understood. Airlines won't let you get on a plane if you're intoxicated but they'll serve alcohol in terminals. Yeah...is this so the public will be more docile when it's time for the public groping to get onto the plane???

And as someone who studied Psychology in college, I have some words about this article.

First off, one of my Psych professors said it's very hard to determine who is actually crazy & who's just faking it. Apparently there was a study done where people pretended to be insane enough to be committed to a mental hospital & the staff there couldn't tell the difference between actual patients and the actors.

So if mental health professionals can't tell the difference between the actual crazies & the pretend crazies, doesn't this just impede on one's civil rights to get guns if they are not actually crazy? If it's just a big guessing game, then shouldn't we come up with something better like a more sane gun control policy that maximizes the number of law abiding citizens who can get guns while minimizing the chance that actual crazies & criminals can get them?

Speaking of going overboard, this does it, don't you think? What makes it worse is that it happened in NYC. I think suspension is extreme. If a student brings in a weapon, do they use it on him/her?

Plus, the whole punishment of suspension is just stupid. Most kids WANT to be out of school, especially if they're always getting into trouble. You're just giving them free time to cause trouble elsewhere. Perhaps business owners & others annoyed by suspended kids should get to sue the school districts for damages or other business losses due to those kids not being in school like they should be.

You want to punish a kid? Tie them up & make them watch something they'd hate. Or make them listen to horrible music. Perhaps a rehearsal for someone who can't sing or a band that can't play. THAT'S punishment!! Not this free range, party time crap. If you can't spank, at least use your brain & be creative in punishing someone.

Now, on this union issue I'm divided. People who keep up with current events have heard about this one. Here's my take.

I'm not really pro or anti-union. The reason is I'd rather have something in between or at least a union that doesn't encourage sloth or inefficiency. My husband is in a union job & isn't a union supporter. First off, his is essentially neutered. They can't even strike to protest unfairness, which I consider a hallmark of having a union to start with.

Second, I think terrible workers should be tossed out with no excuses. They shouldn't get 30 years in a job & get to stay employed in layoffs while less senior but more competent people are let go to starve to death. There's no incentive to work hard, improve conditions or put in any real effort. If an entire library staff & local community members are calling for someone's head, that person should not get to keep his/her job or remain in management while others who work harder & are better workers are tossed out like garbage.

I don't have a problem with entertainment unions because the bad people get filtered out by way of actor conduct. SAG or AFTRA wouldn't tell filmmakers or companies to keep some specific actor who's causing problems or disrupting a set while getting rid of someone who's been in the union for less time & is a perfect angel. I've never heard of either of these unions doing that stuff.

For that matter, I don't know of any entertainment union of any type that has seniority rules for productions. Actors have incentives to not be jerks while also being assured of proper treatment like breaks, meals, etc.

If you could figure out how to create a union that holds its members accountable or at least doesn't provide a safe harbor to total incompetents at the expense of hard working people with less seniority, then I'd be far more supportive of the concept. However, I can't help but call Tea Party folk supporting the removal of collective bargaining for unions in WI hypocrites since I'm sure THEY benefited from the things unions brought into the work force.

Furthermore, unions do keep out illegal immigrants. You know these government officials would turn a blind eye to that kind of thing if you didn't have the unions around. Didn't the Tea Party oppose illegal immigration or do they want to drag down the minimum wage for everyone & become homeless themselves?

Oh, and what a shocker! You know it's because of those old white male Senators, right? If the houses of Congress were mostly women, I bet that would change in a heartbeat along with issues of birth control and perhaps abortion. And gee, what else is the US behind on??? I'm sure there's lots of examples of how America's proclamations are total BS now; feel free to share if there's something Michael Moore didn't mention in one of his films.

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