Hair on Fire! The Rebellion Publishes Again!

The April 17, 2006, edition of Bacon’s Rebellion has been published. The entire edition can be viewed here. Columns include:

On the Chopra Block
Cutting costs in the Medicaid system may sound an odd task for Virginia’s Secretary of Technology. But that’s only if you don’t know Aneesh Chopra.
by James A. Bacon

Making the Disaster Fit the Plan
The Congressional analysis is in: The Katrina disaster represented a failure at all levels of government, not only to plan ahead, but to communicate and react to unforeseen developments. by Doug Koelemay

Howell Gets Feisty
One reason the House of Delegates is holding firm in the budget debate this year is that House Speaker Bill Howell is more assertive, even combative, than ever before.
by Patrick McSweeney

Kaine Reneges Again
Tim Kaine has broken three important promises in a mere three months: First transportation taxes, then land use reform, and now the marriage amendment.
by Patrick McSweeney

Crippling the Disabled
Virginia’s educational lobby upholds its own institutional interests above those of the most vulnerable members of our society, disabled children.
by Chris Braunlich

Governed by Demagogues
Virginia politicians are not simply spinning the truth — they’re engaging in outright demagoguery. And they will continue as long as the electorate remains apathetic.
by Philip Rodokanakis

Time to Choose: Are You a Peasant or a Patriot?
The royals running Virginia’s House of Lords, er, Senate, think the populace is too supine to protest another tax increase.
by Jim Bowden

When Democrats Attack
The Democratic blogosphere has a problem with the fact that U.S. Senatorial hopeful Harris Miller is a rich Washington lobbyist. My reaction: So what?
by Conaway Haskins

Race, Class and Affirmative Action
Jim Webb supports affirmative action for African-Americans to counteract historical injustices of slavery and segregation. But poverty, he notes, does not discriminate on the basis of skin color.
by Conaway Haskins

Nice & Curious Questions:
After Monticello: Modern Architecture in Virginia
by Edwin S. Clay III and Patricia Bangs

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2 responses to “Hair on Fire! The Rebellion Publishes Again!”

  1. Ray Hyde Avatar

    I’m not sure if you are being better about your arguments or if I’m getting soft / indoctrinated by your views.

    I couldn’t find much to argue with this month. From a crusty old carpetbagger, that counts as high praise.

  2. Anonymous Avatar

    That Harris Miller was a lobbyist doesn’t bother me at all, nor does the fact that he apparently became rich at his profession. Good for him. What bothers me is that Miller’s ITAA and similar organizations are undermining US IT workers and the US’s ability to compete in technology in the long run.

    For years now these organizations have been promoting outsourcing of US IT jobs, importing H-1B’s and L-1’s to take IT jobs here in the US, and simultaneously whining that the US isn’t producing enough science and technology workers. The truth is that the unemployment rate is higher for IT workers than is the unemployment rate in general and that doesn’t reflect those IT workers who have given up looking and are working as “consultants”, selling PC’s at ComputerWorld, or working out of the field altogether.

    A year or two ago the “Wall Street Journal” ran an article in which “high-tech execs” were lamenting the fact that they couldn’t persuade their children to study IT and engineering. Why? The kids were fairly direct: Why go into a profession where US jobs were being destroyed? They didn’t mention it specifically in the article but another question is why go into a profession in which your employer can replace you with a cheaper foreign worker via H-1B and then add insult to injury by requiring that you train him (it’s usually a him) in order to secure a decent severance package to tide you over while you look – often for years – for another job. Yes, yes, I know – businesses are not SUPPOSED to be able to replace US workers this way but they do; and nothing is done about it, just as nothing is done about employers hiring illegal immigrants on the other end of the jobs spectrum.

    I live in Blacksburg and many of our restaurant workers are VT students. About 3 years ago, I asked a waitress what her major was, and congratulated her on selecting bio-technology. I mentioned the problems noted above in the IT and Computer Science (CS)fields. She readily agreed and noted that IT/CS grads were not getting jobs in their fields, word of same was getting back to IT/CS students still at VT, and they were switching majors. Sure enough a couple of months later, the “Roanoke Times” had an article that noted that VT was awarding significantly fewer IT/CS type degrees than it had before. The “tech dearth” is becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy; and, for the record, bio-technology and engineering jobs are following the path of IT/CS jobs.

    About 40 years ago when I first started college, there was a shortage of secondary school teachers. Virginia had a program to pay for most of any student’s education if she (usually a she) entered teaching and taught 4 years in Virginia. If she taught less, then the cost was settled on a year for year basis. US businesses are spending less and less on training for workers – a short sighted lack of investment, IMO. Businesses know their long-term plans much better than their workers do and so could plan training a lot better than individual employees could.

    Miller and Co are are helping to destroy US technology jobs and then blaming US workers for not being willing to spend 4-6 or more years of difficult study, shoulder 5-figure student debt, and then not get a decent job at the end. We have enough short-sighted out-of-touch people in Congress already. Who needs another one?

    Deena Flinchum

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