mardi 27 juin 2017

How do you cope with a truly stupid manager?

I worked for six years for a company that's now defunct. The owners sold the business and the new owners destroyed the company and it closed its doors forever.

I got off track. My manager or as she called herself "your boss" was not intelligent. She said and did things so asinine that I often wondered how she got the job in the first place and why was she able to keep it.

Here's an example. She told me to close our post office box account and when I did she asked me a week later to check and see if the old box had any of the companys mail in it. I told her I had turned in the key and she asked me in a loud angry voice "why did you turn the key in?"

The answer- of course, was you close the account you have to turn the key into the post office so that someone else can use the box.

On another occassion one of her smoking buddys accused me of not properly making a UPS label even though I was doing it right. The smoke buddy told my manger and my manager said she would do it. She screwed it up so bad the driver left in disgust. Two idiots not knowing what they were talking about.

Most people would quit but I was not in a financial shape so that I could leave.

What would you guys have done?

via International Skeptics Forum

Conservatives lifting austerity for state funded benefits?

Hopefully this is a sign of things to come:

An 8% raise won't bring benefits to where they would have been if they been raised in line with inflation over the "austerity" years but it will be a start.

via International Skeptics Forum

lundi 26 juin 2017

Cakes are going to the Supreme Court

The Supreme Court announced today that they will take up the case of a Colorado baker next term. The baker, who makes custom cakes for weddings, refused to make a cake for a same sex marriage. The Colorado Civil Rights Commission determined that the baker was in violation of the Colorado civil rights laws, which bar discrimination based on sexual orientation.

The baker's case is that the cake is an artwork, and therefore an act of expression. You cannot be compelled against your will to participate in an expressive act that violates your religious beliefs. In similar cases it has also been argued that creating something for use in a ceremony is equivalent to participating in the ceremony, so compelling someone to do something for the ceremony would be to compel someone to participate in a ceremony that violates their religious beliefs. I don't know if the baker's lawyer's used that line of reasoning, or whether they stuck with the freedom of expression angle. (I haven't read the appeal's court briefs or opinions.)

The question before the court will be at what point commercial activity becomes protected speech. The baker has to convince the court that his interest to avoid being compelled to participate in expression that is against his will is not overridden by state law which is written to protect people from discrimination.

I don't know where the court will stand on this issue. There are a lot of factors at work here. The specific case at work here is less significant than a general principle. If they rule in favor of the baker, people might claim that cooking a meal or even setting a table setting is an act of expression, and they can't be compelled to take part. This would effectively eliminate the protections that the civil rights laws are meant to protect. On the other hand, if they rule against the baker, the great fear among the religious right is that preachers or clergy might be compelled to participate in same sex marriages, the theory being that since they accept a fee for their services, they are effectively a business, and cannot turn away people because of their sexual orientation. Similar cases have actually already occurred in some cases, so the fear is not groundless.

Regardless of which way the court rules, the implications will be far greater than just this baker.

For those on the left side of this case, there was a great sigh of relief when, after announcing that they would take this case, Justice Kennedy did not announce his resignation. Kennedy could once again provide the swing vote, but a Trump appointed replacement could be assumed to vote in favor of the baker.

via International Skeptics Forum

2016 Australian Census Results

The results of the 2016 Census have been released and there are some interesting results.

In the Religion section, for example, 30% of people reported having "No religion", up from 13% in 1991.

Summary here, with links to detailed statistics.

via International Skeptics Forum

[Continuation] Trump "[health] insurance for everybody," Replacing the ACA Part II

Mod Info The previous thread was getting slow and generating duplicates, so here is a continuation. As is usual the split point was arbitrary and participants can copy and paste from the previous thread to address points raised therein.
Posted By:Agatha


Originally Posted by Stacko (Post 11895486)
The Times has outlined the winners of the wealthcare bill.

I don't understand the GOP's intense desire to pass this bill since the voters they added to win in November are going to be harmed the most by it.

You're kidding, right? Their goal is to reduce taxes. They are against the basic idea of providing government services, and they will cut as much as they can wherever they can. Ryan wants to cut Medicare and Social Security, which have long been considered practically sacrosanct.

And if poor whites get hurt, they will blame blacks, immigrants, "welfare," "foreign aid," etc., never Trump or the Repubs.

via International Skeptics Forum

The science of electric shocks.

I was talking to an electrician today, who told me a hair-raising tale about a badly wired building and receiving an electric shock. He said he was blown off his ladder half way across the room by the shock. He estimated he ended up 10 feet away.

So, how did that happen? What was the actual force that propelled him?

Am I right to think of those frog legs attached to a wire, twitching when a current was applied? In other words, rather than be "blown" across the room, was he actually induced to involuntarily jump across the room?

As for details, we're talking domestic 240 volts AC. I assume from the description that the breakers/ trips were either primitive, or non-existent (fuses, maybe?). He was a little unlucky, in that he had turned off the house mains, but the circuit that was left live was a spur from the back of a neighbour's socket on the party wall.......highly illegal.

Oh, and he's fine.

via International Skeptics Forum

Is Genesis History?

Just learned that this movie, IS GENESIS HISTORY? has been released on DVD. I did a google search for the movie and was surprised to find such a small number of negative reviews and posts. I have not seen it, but it appears to be totally young earth creationist propaganda.

The few negative reviews and comments that I have seen are mostly of the name-calling variety with little or no actual rebuttal.

The movie can be downloaded here.

via International Skeptics Forum