Why all the hate for dirty jobs? Politicians, who express love for blue-collar workers, often seem to hate every job they do.
Every policy they have works to eliminate those jobs. Sometimes it is cloaked in lofty language about “retraining for the jobs of the future.”
Environmentalists really seem to hate dirty jobs. For them jobs that dig, drill, cut or build are not only demeaning to the worker, they are contributing to an impending global apocalypse. Eliminating them is a “win-win.” They pretend that diverting investment to “green jobs” is the creation of “new jobs,” when all it does is shift more resources to far fewer resulting. Green energy jobs are great jobs but look at where most of those green energy devices are manufactured and you will not find a US worker involved in anything other than (maybe) the installation.
Some Republicans decry such regulations and poor investments, but only recently are a few lonely voices starting to push for skilled trades education and freedom. Why? Mostly because the old guard likes to feel cool talking about “emerging sectors” and “the knowledge economy,” and because deep down they think the trades are still geared toward unionization. What they seem to miss is that if the knowledge economy designs a widget it isn’t built without a group of skilled tradespeople to do so.
This situation is stupid thinking disguised as forward thinking. Scratch a skilled tradesman and you find a wannabe business owner. Every mechanic wants to own his own shop, every carpenter thinks about being a contractor. Some just want to control their lives and work when and where they want, for whom and as often as they want.
The education establishment is almost completely geared toward the “knowledge economy,” toward everyone “working with their brains” in cubicles– no matter what their real talents may be. For many teachers, a student going into a skilled trade is a mark of failure on their part. It’s something that was “settled” for by a student because they “couldn’t get into college.”
But like Mr. Incredible in the great Pixar cartoon many people cannot stand the thought of shuffling papers for the rest of their lives and find great fulfillment in working with their hands–and directing others who work with their hands.
And here’s a dirty secret… It pays a LOT better.
And here’s another dirty secret… We need those jobs. It’s manufacturing that creates real wealth, and it’s yet other tradesmen who keep those products working. We can’t just float around on brainpower. People need stuff. Somebody has to make it, and somebody has to fix it. That’s civilization. That’s the real economy.
Next: From Think Tank President to Motorcycle Repairman
One of the more iconic images to come out of the war in Iraq was that of an Iraqi woman proudly showing the camera her purple ink stained finger, indicating that she had voted. This picture was taken in Sadr City, the epicenter of unrest and violence against the coalition forces.
Of course, since the election had taken place in a Muslim country, this became a cause célèbre centered on new voting rights for Iraqis in general and women in particular.
But the purple finger was also a sign of civilization and democracy on another level, that of not only a free election where all adult citizens are allowed to vote, but also a fair one.
It boiled down to this—one finger, one vote.
Elections are a good thing, but for years, Iraq (like the Soviet Union) supposedly had elections with statistics reported at 100% turnout and Saddam garnering voter support in the high 90s. The purple finger was a sign that the election was monitored, regulated properly, and that, most importantly, everyone was able to vote, but only once.
Now lets go to the epicenter of the 2012 election, Ohio. Election worker Melowese Richardson proudly told a local TV station that she not only voted twice for herself, but that she also voted on behalf of several other people.
Keep in mind that this was not an illiterate random person, but a trained election worker. Yet MSNBC regularly proclaims that efforts toward voter ID and claims of voter fraud are canards designed to “suppress” the vote.
Co-author David Forsmark spent a year and a half working for a county clerk and can affirm there are areas where local clerks belligerently refuse to enforce voter ID laws, acting as though denying anyone access to the poll is a violation of voting rights.
Even where clerks are vigilant, people who try to vote but can’t prove their identity are still allowed to vote. No one is turned away. Those votes are set aside as provisional ballots for the conflict to be resolved later.
We have seen precincts that report more votes than are registered, but there are no provisional ballots ever reviewed. Statistically, this is impossible.
The ACLU attitude that it’s better that 1000 guilty people go free than 1 innocent person be convicted is applied to voting “rights.” But in this case, those 1000 people have a direct consequence on 1000 other people—in effect, they steal their vote.
In the meantime, MSNBC and Eric Holder keep ranting about voter suppression.
We’ve been seeing a lot of breaking news about scandals lately, and they all seem to have one thing in common: The people at the top apparently didn’t want to know the truth behind the sordid stories.
Was the IRS harassing and suppressing President Obama’s political opponents? Nobody wanted to know. Why wasn’t a rescue operation mounted for our ambassador to Libya and the brave Americans who disobeyed orders to try to help him? People actively tried not to know. And what about the possibly illegal invasion of privacy into the lives of investigative reporters who inform the public about the government? Attorney General Eric Holder pretended not to know.
Since we began writing about welfare fraud and how to stop it, some have leveled the accusations that we are using scare tactics and demonizing the poor. That’s because those who depend on expanding government for their benefit don’t want to know, don’t want to stop it, and sure as heck don’t want you to know.
But while taxpayers are the ones fleeced by welfare fraud, the poor are also put at risk by a program that has no safeguards to ensure that the people who get the money are the ones it intended to help.
The good news is this problem can be solved easily and cheaply without unduly prying into the lives of recipients or treating them like suspects. We have the technology and skills to rebuild the system into one we can trust.
The bad news? Politicians, eager to develop constituents dependent on the government, aren’t particularly interested in reforming a defective system.