Thursday, March 30, 2006

The Democrats have a Plan? has a post called Democrats Offer Bold Security Agenda that's worth checking out...

Today, Democratic leaders across the country will join House and Senate Democrats in unveiling a comprehensive plan for providing the American people with real security. The agenda stands in stark contrast to the dangerous incompetence of the Republican leadership, which has undermined the security of the American people.

I can't believe the truck load of nothing contained in this plan. There are no active statements. Everything is made of kind and useful words with no real plan. It reads like a commercial designed to sell you what you don't need. They have carefully chosen each word to achieve the maximum feel good experience.
I don't want to just feel good! I want results. I need real action with real information that can be immediately put into play. The Democrats have had plenty of opportunities to offer up real solutions. Instead of offering anything that would be usable they instead choose to whine and complain when ever asked.
How can we become energy independent when Senator Kennedy won't allow a wind farm in his own home state? How can we become energy independent when the democratic leadership won't allow oil drilling in known oil areas such as ANWR?
How can we achieve our goals of Iraqi Independence when Senator Murtha would push for cut and run? Iraqi news has recently reported on the determination of Iraqi people to defeat Al-queda. The people have taken on there own intuitive to clear out vast areas of insurgents. The tide has turned in Iraq, yet our Democratic leadership has failed to notice.

Yep, they got a plan.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

What is the Real Cost of Illegal Immigration?

I keep hearing Americans will have to pay higher prices for goods and services if we lost these workers. I keep hearing that they only do the jobs Americans wont do.

Has anyone bothered to figure out what these cheep laborers are costing us.

1. It costs us about $10,000 per child to educate the illegal children of these workers. The Supreme Court has already ruled that we must educate them.

2. The hospitals are treated as their personal health care system. We the people are then stuck wit the tab by way of government intervention and higher medical costs. This results in higher insurance costs and ultimately forces some Americans to stop having it because of these increased costs. Further we see many Health supplying companies and hospitals in the south are going bankrupt for this reason alone.

3. The southern US states are suffering from a human wave of destruction as illegal entrants meet their needs on their dime. Cars stolen, cloths stolen, food stolen, vandilism....the list is long.

4. Social service such as welfare and food stamps have a don't ask policy that taps into the earnings of the rest of America.

5. The suppressed labor market lowers the standard of living for all Americans.

6. It has been shown that 5% of those in our prisons are Illegals. At an average cost of $23,000 per prisoner, we Americans have to pay this as well.

With just that list, I could add more, both issues I started with would go away. If we could stop paying all the hemorrhaging costs of the illegals the increase in wages may actually result in lower prices.

There are no jobs that Americans won't do. They simply need to be compensated at a reasonable level. Watch "Dirty Jobs" on the Discovery Channel if you don't believe this. If there truly is a labor shortage in America we could raise our legal immigration numbers. We don't need to have illegals forced down our throats.

Friday, March 24, 2006

How much is enough for public education?

We seem to constantly have stories in the news about school cash shortages. I bet there is a headline in your paper right now talking about how underfunded education is in your city, county, state and country. This great sink hole absorbs more and more money and yields less and less results. American education is dropping against foreign competition every year. Why?

Human Events has published an article that clearly deals with this question.
Do Public Schools Need More Money?

Here is a couple of quotes.

Among the universal truths of life are “death,” “taxes,” and “public schools need more money.” Of these three, two are true. Let’s discuss the third “truth,” which is anything but true.


In his book “Education Myths,” Jay P. Greene points out that education spending has been on the rise for fifty years. The Department of Education’ s own records show that after World War II, in today’s dollars, we spent about $1,214 per student. By 1955, that had doubled to $2,345. By 1972, it doubled again to $4,479. Since then, it has doubled yet again to $8,745. And ABC’s John Stossel, in his recent series entitled “Stupid in America,” says the per-student outlay has now reached $10,000.

We even have a case in Oregon, Arkansas, Texas and New York where families and schools are suing the state for lack of education funding. How crazy will this get. Will the state demand a complete disclosure of how all moneys were spent to prove a shortage. Just because they want more doesn't necessarily mean they are short of funds. Mismanagement of money and resources should fall under heavy scrutiny.

The monopoly of the public school system constantly holds our society down. Those who can afford private education are getting so much more. Private schools are doing it for around $5000 per student with no government assistance. These families are pay taxes to feed the sink hole of public education as well as pay out of their pocket for a real education for their children. Would you be surprised to learn that a major percentage of educators are those paying for private?

Somehow we need to take back education from the many teachers unions. We need a return to the basics; reading, writing, math and history. We need to put an end to the feel good indoctrination and return critical thinking skills to our children. We can't afford to wait any longer. Waiting only drains are pockets and hurts our children and our nation.

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Sunday, March 19, 2006

Do Men have any rights?

The problem with our laws governing abortion and parental rights is that they rob a man of all authority over the fate of his unborn child but assign him fifty-percent of the responsibility for that child should the woman, exercising her total authority in the matter, decide to bring the child to term.

It’s for this reason that the National Center for Men intends to argue its case based on the equal protection clause of the Constitution. And it’s understandable. We live in a society that is obsessed with equality, and our government zealously enforces onerous regulations and mandates and imposes a radical-egalitarian model on all of us (i.e., Title IX dictates, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, etc.). Despite this, inequality is not only tolerated but prescribed when it redounds to the detriment of men and the benefit of women. And this is a perfect example: woman+conception+100% authority=50% responsibility. But what about man+conception+0% authority? Well, you won’t see this on the SATs, but the answer is still 50% responsibility. It’s amazing how placing a man in an equation completely alters the answer.

You got to read the rest of this article.
Have We Really Saved Our Ports?

This has moved out of the lime light and has probably been forgotten by many but our ports are still not safe. I just stumbled across this article and you may want to read the whole thing.

By J. Grant Swank, Jr.
Mar 19, 2006

Longshoremen unions own the turf. They have an anti-US history. They are infested with law-breakers. Therefore, Dubai or no Dubai, the ports still are not safe for America.

According to Lowell Ponte, "Port Fear," on the nation is in port trouble and doesn’t realize it. That is, "the little people" don’t know really what’s going on.

One needs to study the unions’ history to get the frightening point. Organized crime has housed there. Anti-US "radical politics" have operated through those unions. Understatement: The unions have sponsored violence. Read More Here

Our representatives still don't get it. We need secure borders be they water or land.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

The Global Warming Scam

by Nima Sanandaji and Fred Goldberg

The media portrays a dramatic image of how the ice is melting in the polar regions as a consequence of global warming. We are warned that the North Pole might become ice-free during the summer months at the end of this century and that the polar bears might become extinct due to this development.
But is this really a realistic image? Sure, there is research that indicates that the ice sheets are being reduced, but there are also studies that show the complete opposite. An example of this is a study in the scientific journal Geophysical Research Letter where the Swedish researcher Peter Winsor compares data collected by submarines below the Arctic ice. His conclusions are that the thickness of the ice has been almost constant between 1986 and 1997.
If you look at the South Pole there are studies that show an increase in the mass of the ice. In a study published in the journal Nature a number of polar researchers showed that they had observed a net cooling of 0.7 degrees in the region between 1986 and 2000. Another study published in Science showed that the East-Antarctic ice sheet had grown with 45 million metric tones between 1992 and 2003.
Are the ices growing or melting? The simple answer is that there exist studies that point to both directions, perhaps indicating that scientists know relatively little about global climate. But what counts to most ordinary people is what media is reporting, and media is often highlighting the most alarming studies and seldom report of studies that go against the notion that human activity leads to global warming. To put it simply, the news is filtered through an environmentalist view of the world. Read more here.

Many will tell you to follow the money. With the vast sum of money going toward research in Global Warming, those who get it don't want the stream to be cut off. Anyone who goes against the grain of warming will be quickly marginalized or ignored completely. They are told about the many who are for warming and the few who are opposed. Yet, if one was to start gathering names, the scales are beginning to balance. Here is an article that does just that.
See the list here.
Can the French Last?

Now we have the unions causing chaos.

Last month it was Muslims burning things in protest. All the government seems capable of doing is giving in to these tantrums.

What the problem comes down to is Unemployment. They have a 25-50% unemployment rate of young workers.

The social economy of France keeps workers under 35hrs a week but pays out maximum benefits in the way of health and education. Their state run social programs are driving the cost of French made goods higher and higher removing France from the global market place. The once great nation has become a black mark on society.

How much longer will they last? Who will finally deliver the death blow, Islamic terrorists, Islamic Immigrants or Organized Labor?

Friday, March 17, 2006

What Really Caused the Slide of Our Nation.

Let's talk law.
1. initial law was based on the Ten Commandments and Common Practice and Courtesy's.
2. New laws were created based on old laws.
3. Law has advanced by building one law on top of another and so on.

This leads to higher orders of law.Laws that suddenly arrive with none of the foundation or ear markings common to other law, create major societal upheaval and tension. A clear case in point would be "Separation of Church and State". This phrase was completely foreign to US law until 1947 in the case of Everson -vs- Board of Education. Without citing a single precedent, and ignoring 175years of historically consistent rulings, the court made this claim The wall of separation between church and state must be kept high and impregnable. Everson v. Board of Education With that single decision based on nothing the wall was born.

This would be a perfect example of how man and his immorality created laws that would only further pervert and destroy. "Separation of Church and State" did not appear in the World Book Encyclopedia until 1967.

No one thought much of the Everson decision until 1962 when prayer was removed from the schools on its basis. In 1963 the Bible was removed from education on its basis. In 1965 religious speech among students was declared unconstitutional. In 1969 it became unconstitutional to erect a war memorial in the shape of a cross. In 1976 it became unconstitutional for a school to use the word 'God' in any of its official writings. In 1979 it became unconstitutional for kindergarten classes to declare whose birthday it was on Christmas. In 1980 it became unconstitutional to post the Ten commandments in schools. In 1985 it was declared that any bill, even if consensually acceptable, is unconstitutional if the author of the bill had religious activities in mind when the bill was written.

175 years of American History and law trashed by one decision in 1947. How much further are we going to allow the founding fathers works to be eroded? How many more of your rights will you let slip away? This country started as a shining beacon of Christianity and has since fallen to depravity and violence. We were once the world leader in every area of life; now we lead the world in violent crime. Our divorce rate ranks number one in the world. We lead the western world in teenage pregnancies, and we are world leader in voluntary abortions. We are the number one consumer of illegal drugs, and we lead the industrial world in illiteracy.

All this is due to turning our backs on our Christian heritage.

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How do I understand price structure in business?

Since I do not know the type of business or what is truly behind the question let me start by providing you with information regarding how payroll and equipment effect the pricing structure of goods.

Studies have shown that successful companies have a total payroll expense of 20%-30% of there gross sales. There are those more labor intense markets that occasionally show 35%. There are also those low labor companies that come in at 15%. For the sake of argument we will use 25%. This would mean a company must gross 4 times its total payroll cost in order to turn a profit and thereby be successful.

Payroll cost is made up of a number of factors.
Social Security
Employee portion
Employer portion
Employee portion
Employer portion
Federal unemployment
State unemployment
Workers Compensation Insurance
Employees Portion (minimal)
Employers Portion (Substantial Averaging $5/$100 paid)
Local Taxes (Transit, City, County, etc..)

Not to mention Benefits and Insurance packages that may or may not be part of the companies total payroll expense. These could include:
Health Insurance
Dental Insurance
Vision Insurance
Life Insurance
Supplemental Insurance
and other fund function accounts.

On the average for every $.25 paid in straight payroll the company pays out of pocket $.31 (Plus Benefits and Insurances). For example: An employee earns $10/hr worked. The companies true out of pocket payroll for this employee is $12.40/hr (Plus Benefits). That is a 36% increase in cost per employee per man-hour.
As an employee that would mean that you would need to make 5.5 times your payroll every hour for the company to stay afloat. That same $10/hr employee must earn the company $50/hr so the out of pocket payroll percentage would be 24.8% and we still haven't accounted for the benefits.
So when you go down to the local garage and they tell you the rate is $55/hr to work on your car, you know that the average payroll is $11/hr. You can further bet that they don't have all the latest and greatest equipment at this rate or the best help and technicians. Since the average payroll for an auto mechanic in 1998 was $13.16/hr, you probably wont get the top techs unless the labor rate is closer to $66/hr.
As you can see by my example that you now are able to calculate anyone wage and cost to the company based on simple and easy to get data.

We can further extrapolate to equipment. Every piece of equipment in a company must earn the price of replacement in five years. If you pay $100,000 for a piece of equipment it will need to earn a minimum of $20,000 each year plus the operator cost. This falls into a similar category as payroll with 5 times being the minimum requirement for a company to stay in business. If the equipment lasts longer or can still offer comparable production after this point it would be profit. If your maintenance and operator keep this piece of equipment in top shape you do have some room to price adjust and give discounts to top customers and cash payers. Utilizing a second shift increases overall wear but the cost to operate factor is far less and profitability far higher.

Generally speaking a piece of equipment needs to earn its value each year. This would allow enough money to pay overhead, utilities, labor and such that would go into keeping it going. If a $100,000 piece of equipment earned you $100,000 in business each year you would be at break even. In order to turn a profit you would need to exceed its value. Also recognize that in addressing this pricing we may have equipment that can not achieve its value but necessary for your trade. Other more sell-able equipment will need to make up for this. It may be best to think of total value of your equipment and therefore total annual earnings necessary to break even.

I hope this helps you better deal with money management and employee cost considerations as you move into a management position. The bottom line is what makes business. Failure to understand and utilize this as a tool will greatly hamper your effectiveness. Now that you know you are well armed and have increased chances for promotion. You can have bottom line discussions with higher management and better understand your department budget and performance.

I think that this will give you the tools you need to make these types of decisions as well as get a better idea of how your money is working for you in other areas.
I have consulted for businesses for a number of years and this is one area that lacks understanding. I would not be surprised if this is a major wedge that causes many businesses to fail. We want to be fair and competitive. These have costs and need to be recognized. If we as employers as well as our employees clearly understood these principals, the business world would be a far better place.
The minimum wage isn't the problem.

How we use and apply the minimum wage is. The minimum wage was designed to be a starting place in the work force. It was designed to keep the cost of training and education of a new worker low while they are learning to be productive in a new field or career. The intent was that someone with no training or previous experience would be given an opportunity to enter a career field at a reduced rate to encourage new employment and training by a company. The employee once achieving a level of function profitable by the company, their wage would compensate to that level.
Where we went wrong. Automation has reduced many skilled jobs to simple daycare. In many factory line settings a person is simply there to hit a stop button if something should go wrong. These positions often require no real training and little physical energy. This person may simply sit on a stool all day next to a line and watch product go by. Companies fail to recognize profit for this activity so compensation is low. Instead, employers should see this as profit insurance because it keeps things going and minimizes down time when things go wrong.
Job loyalty by both the employee and the employer is part of the problem. Less then forty years ago company loyalty was a standard. People still dreamed of finding a good company with a future and working for them until they retired with a good pension and plenty of company loyalty on both sides. Those days are now far behind. The average employee will be at a company for 3-5years and move on. This short-term employment structure has greatly reduced loyalty and reward for such. Why invest heavily in a short-term situation. We can see in standard business how the length of the term of contract will predict the profitability of it. As the time increases the rewards to both sides increase and the contract become of benefit to both parties. We have a reduced time in the work force and hence a reduced reward.
Technology has reduced the knowledge base in the work force. Skill and knowledge in your career field was much higher thirty years ago. With the computer almost everywhere the need for knowledge has reduced to simply pushing a button and the answer is in front of you. The old know how is been replaced with a do what it says.
Education isn't what it used to be. Our youth used to come out of school and be able to do the basics; Read, Write, Math, and problem solve. A high school education meant you knew something. Most now a days scoff at a high school graduate. They can't do any of the basics. You have to go to college just to get a basic education. What we new in 8th grade 100 years ago a college student couldn't even pass the test with a "D" today.
Selfish ambition on both sides of the job market has also contributed to the problem. Everyone has become so ME centered that trust and encouragement has been tossed out the window. The employer is so worried about their bottom-line and themselves they fail to give a care for the employee. The employee is so wrapped up in themselves they no longer consider the employer. No mutual ground is established and each functions as if the other is out to get them. Paranoid, maybe, but the selfishness on both sides has cut into profitability for both. The failure to build a relationship of trust and mutual desire to succeed has pulled both down. The lack of encouragement in both directions has further soured the relationship. Then add in the above short stay syndrome and you have quite a problem.
The timetable has gotten out of hand. We no longer allow the time for quality and craftsmanship. We expect a certain percentage of failure. This expectation is the seed of ultimate failure and vast loss of profitability. We need to be able to take the time to make sure it is right, to allow the ink or paint to dry before we deliver. We say we want a quality product but NOW out goes quality hands down. Few things of any real value don't take significant time to get together.
I have touched on a lot of issues here and believe me, I could go on. The key to solving the poverty issues is bigger then the minimum wage. Yet, I will make a suggestion that goes beyond the obvious above. We need to create a standard that re-establishes how the minimum wage is used. I would suggest that any employer who applies the minimum wage to an employee for more then six months should have a penalty. It generally takes three to six months to get someone skilled to a level of profitability in a given position. This person should either be rewarded for success or ousted for failure. That should be followed up with positions that show constant rotation of employment should be demonstrated as stepping stones in moving up in a company or penalties should be in place to keep employee rolling down to a minimum as a way to dodge wage increases. Many would argue that that level of government involvement is too hard on business. I instead would argue that the product waste and loss or profitable wages has reduced everyone’s profitability and the greater good to all needs to be considered.

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