The Raven

The Raven

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Working Class Hero

I hate that I am a slave to the retail industry. I have no real marketable skill that people want to pay me for. I hate that grocery stores do not specialize in food; they try to be their own shopping center in one store, one person per department to do it all as well as cater to customers. This may be conveinent for the consumer and CEO of the buisness,  but not for the worker.In reality, though, customers are often disgruntled after talking to the clerk, who can be overworked, underpaid and rushing off to complete their next task, and not very knowledgeble because they are responsible for mulitple duties and rushed along up the hill pushing the profits up and into the fat mouths of the CEOs.
This also causes the closing of quality, professional small buisnesses shops where the workers are able to dedicate custom attention to their work. I work-in a floral shop within a chain grocery store. I used to be a cashier, which I still do whenever it gets too crowded, or they want to cut the front end's hours and hire more  17 or 18 year old part-timers...I have medeocre skills in flower arrangining, and have multiple jobs to get done within 5 or 6 hours, so there is no time to learn the expert skills that one could find at a shop where the worker was a full-time apprentice to an expert botanist who knew all his or her customers and the proper way to care for plants and flowers. This type of buisness is world-wide. Capitalism, what began as the right to have your own buisness, and make a profit, has turned into monstrous greed that buys elections and fuels the ugly idea that if your not at the top of the hill, you should be eliminated because you are unambitious, which is why you are poor to begin with and are a drain on society killing the buzz of the those up in the clouds of smoke from their sweet cigars reaped and rolled by Central American slaves making about $2.00 per day.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

A Little Tea

My cousin has an unconventional, dark sense of humor, which I like. He can keep such a straight face that it sometimes takes me a while to catch on that he's joking. Once while having tea at my aunt's house, he says that being tall is being superior. Being only 5'2", I demanded to know why! He gave me the example that say my aunt asked me to get that tea pot on the top shelf, I couldn't reach it, but he easily could. Ofcourse, this was all a light hearted conversation, yet I did wonder if he secretly thought this to be true.
A few days later, I was picking mulberries from a tree in my yard; I couldn't reach the really yummy ones near the top, so I couln't help thinking back to my cousins's statement. However, I came up with a new theory. If as a species is developing all is easy for it, it will never evolve further. Yet, if one is too small to, say reach the higher fruit, their minds will have to, out of necessity, develop new ways to get the fruit. They would innovate ways using their BRAINS, thereby creating new ideas, creativity and progress. So, then, who is the superior?

Monday, November 15, 2010

Girl Power!!!!!?

I read an article last year where the question was if a woman can use her sexuality to get ahead in her career, why not take advantage of it? Well.... it's just not fair; she should advance because of her qualifications, other than her... endowments. If women kneel to this idea, men will to expect other women to play this game, show them or give them some kind of sexual satifaction in order to move up. Women have worked too hard to be taken seriously, to not be seen as sex objects here to please men. By selling out ourselves we devolve the movement of women. Our bodies are sacred and powerful. Yes, we are sexual creatures, and we should be able to run naked if we want to... Yet, when it comes to the work place, we must play fair. 

Thank you Obama for working to finally get this Act passed in 2010!

Monday, November 8, 2010

It's not all Roses

A Day in the Life of a florist at your typical, 21st Century, capitalist supermarket.
How many people do you think are responisible for all the following?
unload stock from pallets, usually 4-12 boxes, manuver a full u-frame through crowded walkways of cattle-like customers,unload, process flowers, plants, recut and care for older product before putting out newer product, wait on a customer, finish unloading pallet, get called up to a register to help alleviate the crowds accumulating, fill 32 gallon water tank, push it outside,water plants outside, get called back in to help a customer in your department, go back outside to water, push tank back in to be refilled, take the trash,condense cardboard and take it to crusher,wait on a customer, go upfront again to run a register, while water tank overflows, go back out to water, refill tank, help customers, clean department, help bag groceries up front, water plants outside... I think you get the idea- How many? ONE, just ONE! And they give me 5 or 6 hours per day to do all this! They cut back the cashiers upfront, and pull people from other departments to do their job, causing their primary job to be comprimised and often, incomplete. If workers had a specialty they could work on all day, they would be more able to dedicate their efforts and talents, and therefore, have a better end result; if one person has many things to do, nothing is done to its potential. Capitalists seem to want slavery back. Now, I am in no way trying to compare myself to a slave, I have never known what that is like, but worker's rights are not the priority to many capitalistic buisness classes- and I would not put it past them that if they could reinstate slavery for their buissnesses, they would. Their profits would go through the roof! No pesky healthcare costs, or fair wages, or paid holidays... they wouldn't even have to provide a place for us to take a break, for there would be no breaks!
What is most frieghtening to me is a recent incident in my town. Back in 1946, a place called Eatmor opened, helping this working-class community"eat more, for less." The meat cutters managed to get a union organized and the place survived many economic slumps for 60 years, under one family ownership. I worked there for 4 years. There were many things I hated about my job, such as the degredation from the customers, but I grew a thicker skin and survived and earned my unions wages and full healthcare coverage. Every cashier had their own bagger, usually a local, high-school male, which made things easier for the customer and the cashier; plus, the bagger could catch anything I may have missed on the bottom of the cart, which managment appreciated. They were there to help little old ladies out to their car and earn tips; many baggers could earn upwards of $60 on a good night, plus minimum wage, pretty good for a 16 or 17 year old. In 2007, the place was sold to a family from India, who had a pattern of buying and mismanaging stores, who managed to run the Eatmor buisness, a landmark of 60 years, down to the ground within one year by not paying bills, leaving an arrogant, inexperience 20 something to mind the store and being motivated only by money and ignoring the wants and needs of customers and workers. Towards the end, they laid off many workers, and eventually shut it down, causing all its workers, many who had more than 30 years there, to go on unemployment, to get rid of the union, and reopen under the SAME NAME, only adding an "E" at the end and to be ANTI-UNION; a real slap in our faces...

In modern supermarkets, where I ended up getting my new job after Eatmor, they practise tacts such as this... I used to be able to get 8 hour days a couple times a week. When new store managment came, they cut that out- the max hours we can now get is 7.15, which cut out one of our 15 mins and our 1/2 hr lunch break; this was done to "streamline" the front end, where there are no baggers ready to help customers out to their car; that's unheard of! The cashier, who is busy bagging, while the customer stands and stares hawk-eye at the screen waiting to catch her 10 cents not comming off, has to make sure there is nothing left under or in the cart. I guess too many cashiers were too overworked to see the many items going out the door unpaid for. I don;t blame them- it's one customer right after the next, literally, as you're saying have a nice day and hading the change back to them, another on the other side is shoving thier coupons and savings card at you. There are literally one right after the other since there are usually only a few lines open, so the owners can make more profit and not have to pay their workers too much! So, to fix this, my store has now put in place a scanner that looks for missed items on the bottom of the cart; a good, old-fashined bagger could have solved this, I thought!
 This enviroment makes for irritable workers and customers. If the workers are taken care of first- with fair wages, full healthcare coverage, and full-time hours, not  less hours and more responsiblity for the same pay- they will be happier and more efficient in the workplace which will lead to happier, more loyal customers.
If a buissness cannot provide fair conditions to its workers, should they even be running a buisness?

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Where's the Fire?

Is all hope for CHANGE lost?! For many years I have realized that to Washington, the working class doesn't count; the closest some of the Democrats have come to knowing my kind of people is the middle class. Once Obama entered the campaign for president in 2008 it was the first time I ever felt inspired because he seemed to recognize the working class, and was set on making things better for us drowning down here. He sends my Dad $60 bucks a month, and pays for him to go back to school since his job was lost because of outsourcing. I am still hopeful in Obama; the people cannot loose the fire inside we had in 2004!!
The House has a 242 majority of Republican's, 193 Democrats. Thankfully we got some healthcare reform before yesterday- the new healthcare law states that insurannce companies cannot drop people when they get sick, as they could before and the Republicans want to repeal this; they obviously have never been where the people have been, fearing, obsessing over how they are going to pay to get well and feed their family. Before Obama came to Washinton, too many American jobs were lost to outsourcing,  we plummeted into an economic depression, unemployment reached Depression-era percenatges. Obama came in just in time to save us from the second Great Depression. Thankfully, the Democrats still have the Senate and White House.
I loved watching The Ed Show tonight on MSNBC; Ed Shultz was so angry at the lack of fire in Obama today after the defeat in the House. Obama said he is willing to comprimise with the Republicans; the Republicans, especially the new speaker, John Boehner, who are tenacious on defeating him, perhaps even trying to impeach him! It truly seems that is ALL they set upon doing while Obama, and any Democrats for that matter, are in Congress; they do not seem interested in any noble acts like improving the dire state of our country. The Republicans, who are oppossed to cutting taxes for the middle and below classes, and yet they go on and on about how they will lower taxes and Democrats want to raise them, for such essential things such as EDUCATION, the base of society. The Republicans, who have set record numbers of fillibusters to stop all of Obama's changes. Ed was baffled at why Obama is willing to comprimise with these 'crazies.' All they want to do is concentrate the power again.
I have a couple of ideas to why Obama seemed so burned out... He could be using a Civil Rights movement tact- non-violent resistence, not reacting violently to violence to reveal how wrong the offender is. He may also think that if Republicans now have the majority of the House and neither side bends for comprimise, nothing will get done for the people. I agree with Al Sharpton, who appeared on The Ed Show tonight, saying it is up to the people to fight for what needs to be done in Congress, to show that our support in Obama is not lost.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

The not- so- Goodwife

To seek knowledge is as natural as the fruit that grows in the ever-blossomed orchards of Heaven. Fruit is nourishment for the body as knowedge is nourishment for the mind. I don't believe God would punish those with minds who want to learn and share knowledge. Eve wanted to know about God and about the world around her. We all know how that worked out...
 It is true that "well behaved women rarely make history."
If we fast foward to 1632, early in mass exodus of Christians from England to the New World to keep their beliefs in God "pure,"Anne Hutchinson, well educated in theology, claimed a very unorthodox belief. She believed that "a person's ulitimate destiny was between the individual and God and not to be interpreted by clergymen" (Oh Say Did You Know p. 19). Her and that Saudi-Arabian gentlemen from my last post should get together! She was put under house arrest and finally banished from her colony in Massachusettes. If there is real TRUTH behind what the religious leaders believe then why do they react so harshly to anyone who dissents?
The way God is portrayed in the parable of Adam and Eve is very human-like. God's Word cannot be written down because there is no language we could conceive of to scribe it. Just the idea of God is like looking into pupil of God's Eye and seeing the Cosmic Garden, where stands the Great Tree of Knowledge, and clinging to those branches are tiny, trembling droplets of sacred balance wherewithin are universes.
I feel, in 2010, as Anne Hutchinson did in 1632. We do not need mankind to interpret God to us. God will come to us in our own time and in a personal way that we will be able to receive and understand. It is offputting to have someone preach to me the way they see the Word of God. For all we know, this is really out there, the Bible was put out by the Devil to trick us; it could be part of the everlasting battle of Good and Evil; it was copied down by scribes, who probably made mistakes and the many times the Word has been translated, how could any of the original words be exact? Some foreign words have no equivilent in other languages. 2,000 years ago, 'virgin' meant an unmarried woman; to-day it means a woman who has never had sex. Just that one difference alone should make one wonder about all of history in general. As Bono so well put it, "religion often gets in the way of God." Most wars throughout history have been over religion, atleast in the Middle East. It is not God causing the wars, but man's interpretations of God, which is religion, the sustainence of billions of people all over the world. As long as man is interpreting God, there will be wars, and people who seek the peaceful truth of God will be rebels and excommunicated.

Monday, November 1, 2010

WKUK - Season 4 - Senator Clint Webb (what i really think of politicians!)

Give Change a Chance!

I try to listen to independent views and avoid judgement. I am very liberal and I want my politicians to be so as well! To govern the masses one needs to be open-minded and liberal to be able to listen to and understand the diversity that is our Nation, to be able to represent them as closely as possible. I don't understand how we have managed to still remain a 2-party system country. How can the United States be divided into only 2 parties? I am very anti-Republican; yet I admit, they do have what Liberals seem to lack- solid party loyalty and organization. There are more poor people at the bottom of the pyramid, the foundation of society, why are so many of them voting Republican? Republicans who wipe their asses with our hard earned money, want to privatize healthcare, cut out Social Security and other social benefits for the masses. They don't wan to allow a woman to choose what to do with her body and baby, but when she has that baby they don't want to help her support him, educate him, or take care of him when it gets sick, or fund research that can cure deadly diseases. They use the Bible to grip the fundmanetal Christians, quote the Bible to support their policies, but they will be the first to strap an accused crimminal to the gurney and let him be injected with the deadly serum. On NPR I heard a Saudi-Arabian man, a man from a country where religion runs every aspect of lfe, say that there should be a seperation b/t Church and State. He believes that religion is sacred and should be a quiet, personal relashionship b/t God and the individual. There is still hope for Peace in the Middle East!
People are criticizing Obama for increasing the deficit, and ruining the economy. Where were these people 10 years ago when their people were in power and banks were de-regulated and could profit off of people's loans by selling them to other banks? when mass amounts of companies were shut down and reopened in foreign countries, like China? China, who we owe trillions to because of money borrowed for these 2 wars? China who makes our discount, Wal-Mart apparel, applicances and furniture, while buying oil from Sudan, a terrorist  training ground, now responsible for the greatest mass murder of the 21st century. If Bush-Cheney-like policies had continued, we would now be in the second Great Depression, the rich woul dbe richer, the poor working harder and harder to only become poorer and poorer and to eventually have their jobs outsourced to China, Honduras or maybe Mexico. The Republicans are acting like bratty little children, not wanting to help the country b/c their party is no longer the majority. They reject bills that are presented by Democrats that are designed to restabilize our country; which goes to show that they really don't care about our country; the past reign of Conservative Republicans proves that. When the Republicans were in office my 50 years old father lost his job of 30 years b/c of outsourcing. He gets $50 per month, and education paid for since Obama has been in office. When Republicans were in office I lost my health insurance, employees were laid off and hours were cut back. Now, the Obama administration is working on ensuring healthcare for all. It is going to be a long process to "fix" Washington. So far, Obama is the closest I have seen for a good president. My ideal one would be one more in touch with the working class, very worldly, liberal and one who is serious about Green energy and reviving the health of our planet. But, Washington was too messy and unstable to have an independent party to take over. We need to restabilize; we need American jobs, stronger unions, fair wages, better education, healthcare for all AND WE NEED TO END THESE WARS! Only then, can we be ready for a more independent party. Maybe that's what 2012 will bring; to the tea party and Republicans, that will be the end of the world for sure!!