Friday, January 14, 2011

Road Apples, #88

In the Truly Scary Department...Researchers have determined that the pathogen that causes Mad Cow disease, the prion, can be transmitted through the air.  Story link HERE.  Prions are nasty little chunks of protein that are virtually indestructible (being resistant to high temperatures, radiation, etc.).  Maybe the Vegans are on to something.

Don't Retreat, Reload...So Sarah Palin officially reacts to the shootings in Arizona by whining that the media is picking on her.  A judge and a 9 year old child are dead (along with others).  People in critical condition.  And the greatest harm is to Sarah Palin?  Typical.  This is the same lady who quit being governor of Alaska because, in theory, of the media attention paid to her family.  This is the same family that she dragged out continuously on the campaign trail.  "Blood libel"?  Does she even know what the Hell that even means?  If she actually did I doubt she would have used the phrase in her video clip.  In case you are not sure what I'm talking about, read THIS definition of the term.  I've said it before and I will say it again:  Sarah Palin is a twit.

Anti-Nepotism Policy...The Scranton School District has an anti-nepotism policy that, apparently, doesn't prevent nepotism.  Maybe it actually does, but there are loop holes large enough to drive a truck through.  Here are my thoughts on the subject:

  • Is nepotism bad?  Yes, it is.  It's simply too tempting for leaders to use their power to promote their families at the expense of the public good.
  • Does this mean that potentially good candidates might not get a job if such a policy were actually in place & enforced?  Yes, it does.  But the solution is pretty simple:  if you have a family member who wants to work in the Scranton School District, then simply don't run for a District leadership position or don't work for the District.  There is no right to public employment.
  • Who is harmed?  Public trust.  How do we actually know that a particular candidate for a position is the best qualified when there may be over-riding personal/financial reasons in play on the part of those making the hiring/promotion decisions?
I'm not slamming any particular person in this blurb, but those holding a public office must uphold the highest possible standards of conduct.  That means sacrifice sometimes.  That noted...

Childish School Director...NEPArtisan covered this particular topic quite a bit, so I'll be a lazy blogger and simply re-direct to his blog for background (HERE). Here is my bottom line:  If a sitting School Board Director doesn't think a particular candidate for a position isn't the best qualified (or is violating a non-existent anti-nepotism policy), then that Director should simply vote NO for the personnel action in question.  Simply skipping out of the meeting is childish, and I am being kind.  In fact, I'll raise the bar just a bit more...any Director who simply skips out of a meeting rather than making a difficult vote should RESIGN.  School Directors have the positions they do because we need them to make decisions, not run away from making decisions.

The previous two blurbs have a common theme:  Public Service is an HONOR, not a right.

Are there Amish in China?...I'm just wondering after seeing commercials and advertisements all over the place for the "Amish fireplace".  Background information HERE.

Turn It On Again...is a great song by Genesis.  I did a little reading about the song and discovered that it is about someone obsessed with a TV news anchor.  That noted, and since I have "Morning Joe" on in the background, it seems fitting to end this post with the video clip, of course dedicated to my favorite television news person & media crush.

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