In another lifetime, I was newly married (one year) and had job ‘issues’. Those who know me know I held 40 jobs from age 16 until I landed as a credit card fraud investigator (TMCCC). I stayed in that job for almost 22 years!
My bride worked for an electronics company, then ubiquitous in the Phoenix area. MOTOROLA. Seems her father and one brother also worked there. Family business (?)
(Well, anyway) I was between jobs, and The Wife told me they were hiring. I applied, with the hope I would be working armed security (based on my job experience).
Not only did they NOT hire me for security, they hired me a a line worker doing silicon wafer inspection, in a clean room suit, and, I was assigned second shift! Which meant I’d hardly got to see The Wife.
Hardly my first choice!
But, they had a credit union, and health insurance, and I needed work.
It was NOT the best of experiences.
The crew was largely like those one encountered in the security business. Mixed education and experience, ethnicity and background. One manager was constantly sexually harassing the men, openly; one of the new guys was openly addicted to pills, and treated co-workers horribly. The harasser was left alone, because she was a long-term female employee. The pill-popper was ethnic, and so he was allowed much more leeway than if a White guy had been doing the same. One of the lead engineers was also a harasser, who didn’t get held accountable until years later.
And management constantly held impossible standards over your head, and threatened all with layoffs (a product of the semiconductor production business – we need to get product out, hire more people. When contracts end, lay the folks off!)
So, I worked there a little more than a year-and-a-half. And was miserable.
The Wife and I DID get to see each other on weekends (she became pregnant in May!), and I left der Fledermausflügel in November to begin my private investigation business.
I was laid off.
Why der Fledermausflügel, you ask?
German for bat wings, of course!
Here’s what that bastion of liberal thought, Harvard University, has to say about it:
(from the Daily Wire)
Harvard Study: Minimum Wage Hikes Killing Businesses
Erik Mcgregor/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images
A new Harvard Business School study found that minimum wage hikes lead to closures of small businesses. “We find suggestive evidence that an increase in the minimum wage leads to an overall increase in the rate of exit,” the researchers conclude.
The study, titled Survival of the Fittest: The Impact of the Minimum Wage on Firm Exit, looks at “the impact of the minimum wage on restaurant closures using data from the San Francisco Bay Area” from 2008-2016.
Researchers Dara Lee Luca and Michael Luca chose the Bay Area due to their frequent minimum wage hikes in recent years. “In the San Francisco Bay Area alone, there have been twenty-one local minimum wage changes over the past decade,” they write.
The Lucas found that lower-quality restaurants (indicated by Yelp scores) were disproportionately affected by wage hikes, increasing their likelihood of closure relative to higher-quality, established restaurants.
“The evidence suggests that higher minimum wages increase overall exit rates for restaurants. However, lower quality restaurants, which are already closer to the margin of exit, are disproportionately impacted by increases to the minimum wage,” says the study. “Our point estimates suggest that a one dollar increase in the minimum wage leads to a 14 percent increase in the likelihood of exit for a 3.5-star restaurant (which is the median rating), but has no discernible impact for a 5-star restaurant (on a 1 to 5 star scale).”
While “firm exit” was the focus of the study, the researchers also noted that there are often other consequences from wage hikes, such as worker layoffs, increased pricing and hour-cuts for existing workers:
While some studies find no detrimental effects on employment (Card and Krueger 1994, 1998; Dube, Lester & Reich, 2010), others show that higher minimum wage reduces employment, especially among low-skilled workers (see Neumark & Wascher, 2007 for a review). However, even studies that identify negative impacts find fairly modest effects overall, suggesting that firms adjust to higher labor costs in other ways. For example, several studies have documented price increases as a response to the minimum wage hikes (Aaronson, 2001; Aaronson, French, & MacDonald, 2008; Allegretto & Reich, 2016). Horton (2017) find that firms reduce employment at the intensive margin rather than on the extensive margin, choosing to cut employees hours rather than counts.
Such findings were backed up by Garret/Galland Research’s Stephen McBride, who highlighted in March the “minimum wage massacre.”
“Currently, rising labor costs are causing margins in the sector to plummet. Those with the ability to automate like McDonalds are doing so… and those who don’t are closing their doors. In September 2016, one-quarter of restaurant closures in the California Bay Area cited rising labor costs as one of the reasons for closing,” McBride wrote in Forbes.
“While wage increases put more money in the pocket of some, others are bearing the costs by having their hours reduced and being made part-time,” he added.
As noted by Red Alert Politics, the Bay Area is headed for a $15 minimum wage in July of 2018, though they’ve already seen over 60 restaurants close since September.
While it would behoove the Bernie Bros picketing for $15 an hour to take a look at this study, it’s entirely unlikely that such evidence would deter their entitled attitudes.
I posted regarding this phenomena before, but I obviously don’t have the gravitas of Harvard (nor, apparently the other sources I borrowed
It’s basic economics – businesses expect X dollar profit to be profitable – having the gov’t mandate paying their employees more money lessens profit. Something has to give.
We’re seeing many more kiosks on restaurant tables and counters these days.
They cost less.
“Come With Me If You Want To Live!”
Harvard ‘Shock’ Study: Each $1 Minimum Wage Hike Causes 4-10% Increase In Restaurant Failures
When I was making minimum wage, I changed jobs when I saw I couldn’t make rent and eat on that income. This was in the 70s, when I began making $1.60 an hour, and moved up to $2.10…
(from The Art of Manliness)
You’re lost in the woods, without phone service, and you need a way to signal your location to rescuers on the ground or low-flying aircraft.
Your city is roiled in rioting and chaos, some bad dudes are advancing towards you, and you need to create a distraction to escape and evade them.
It’s a weekend afternoon, your kids are bored, and you’d love to show them a fun and fiery science experiment.
Whether for survival, tactical, or experimental purposes, smoke bombs can be employed in a variety of scenarios.
They’re cheap, small and portable, and incredibly easy to make at home. You can keep them in hiking packs, car glove compartments, garages, etc. You never know when one will come in handy and either provide some weekend entertainment, or perhaps even save your life. Below, I walk you through the simple steps in making homemade smoke bombs on your kitchen stove.
Note: You are of course playing with fire for this experiment, so be prepared and be safe. A bucket of water (or fire extinguisher) is good to have on hand, and when lighting the bomb, use protective eyewear and some sort of breathing filter/mask. The smoke can be toxic, and if the wind blows the wrong way you could be accidentally inhaling it.
Now I remember making such things as a junior high kid, back when a kid could walk into the local drug store and buy 4 oz. bottles of potassium nitrate OTC with no questions asked! The formulae presented is strikingly similar to a solid rocket fuel we made – not that I’m suggesting anyone do such a thing! (I’m certain more specific instructions for rocket fuel are available on the Internet, along with search engines notifying the gov’t of the identity of the searchers…)
BE EXTREMELY CAREFUL THE HEATED MIXTURE DOESN’T REACH THE FLASH POINT WHILE MELTING! LEST YOU HAVE A SMOKE BOMB GO OFF IN YOUR HOUSE!
ANYWAY, the link above and below lead to the the specifics for the smoke bomb. I highly recommend you do NOT use them for anything nefarious!
Let’s all be careful out there! (Have Fun!)
(Bet you thought I forgot!)
Long time readers of this blog may remember my Life is replete with folks named Robert, Bob, David, Dave and similar variants.
Why? I’ve no idea.
I was thinking this morning about someone who may have been the first.
No, not the physician, Indian artist or mediator (as far as I know).
Yep. His name was(is) Robert Davidson(!)
…and a meme began!
He pretty much raised himself. His parents were older (and somewhat self-involved). I’ve no idea what his mother did. She seemed to be absent a lot. His father was a retired Air Force Lt. Colonel. He spent most of his time (when I saw him) drinking liquor in their living room (where we weren’t allowed) and listening to his music. His older brothers led their own lives, and seemed to be tangentially involved with raising him, trading off duties as it were.
He had a younger sister with mental and physical issues. She followed us around like a puppy. The last I heard, she was living more-or-less on her own in assisted living.
But Robert had innate talents. Auto mechanics, electronics. And he was the first of our age on the block to do cool stuff.
Build custom bicycles, grow his hair long, get busted for shoplifting (and escape store custody!), smoke dope. (The first time he showed me a ‘baggie’, I thought great, I’m going to prison!) Joy-riding in his parent’s car, before he was licensed. He spent a Summer stealing VW Bug engines, and never got caught! (or so I was told…)
And the one that really ticked me off: Became intimate with a girl. This ticked me off because he was two years younger than I!
The last I heard, Robert got into computers and was working for the community colleges in this capacity. With another of my friends (from the magic club) named DAVID!
See, it never ends. 😛
And, with all the Internet tools now available, I’ve been unable to reconnect with him. Too common a name, I guess. David is in the wind, as well.
I was never a fan of Batman, the television series. Correction, I didn’t understand camp.
(You must understand, I was in junior high, preparing to graduate to high school, and thought myself a serious intellectual. 😛 )
I did remember Adam West from a previous episode of Robert Taylor’s The Detectives, though. I liked him in that role.
Most persons who become type cast eventually fade away, unless they have amazing talent and staying power. George Reeves killed himself (or was murdered). And Baby Boomers will always associate him with the Superman TV series.
Mr. West worked long before he was Batman, and long afterward. Sometimes as cartoon voice-overs, but not always. He didn’t just do car shows with the Batmobile. He embraced the Batman mythos, and made it his.
And, not unlike Patrick Stewart (in American Dad), he made his famous voice even more famous in ‘adult’ cartoons, like Family Guy. (as the Mayor of Quahog).
He passed after a short bout with leukemia. Having had a blood disease, myself, this definitely got my attention.
He will be missed.
There will be many posts on the blogs today regarding Memorial Day. Hopefully, most of them remind us that originally it was called Decoration Day, and that families took flags and flowers to remember those family members who had passed too early in war. Or had just passed. Sometimes they’d even bring picnic foods to celebrate the person’s life.
Obviously, this has evolved into just a picnic holiday, forgetting the original meaning. After all, it is the official beginning of Summer, and we get off work, school, etc. And those who have gone before are still there, forgotten. And hey, Target has a sale!
(I was in Walmart yesterday. They had banners proclaiming ‘Happy Memorial Day’. Obviously, someone in the art dept. doesn’t get it.)
I remember one Memorial Day in 1977. My Dad drafted me to come with him to visit the grave of my Mother, who passed when I was in the second grade. We didn’t come here often, and being 24, I’d just-as-soon have been anywhere else. And, my Dad mumbled something about his joining her soon. I thought he was just being maudlin.
Three months later he joined her. He knew something, and kept it a secret.
Please take a moment today, while you’re swimming, fishing, boating, picnicking, drinking beer, or partying to remember those who have gone before. It’s the least you can do.
And, as always, hug those still with you and tell them you love them. Do it NOW. You never know.
(I posted the above a few years back, but thought it worth repeating.)
It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died. Rather we should thank God that such men lived. – George S. Patton
We (both the firearms rights community and humanity) have lost yet another.
I knew him through the Internet and other bloggers. He was both personable and knowledgeable.
BearingArms.com reports that Owens was “a graduate of roughly 400 hours of professional firearms training classes, including square range and force-on force work with handguns and carbines.”
The site added that he was “a past volunteer instructor with Project Appleseed. He most recently received his Vehicle Close Quarters Combat Instructor certification from Centrifuge Training.”
According to Young Conservatives, “Bob was well-respected among conservatives and Second Amendment advocates. He would frequently take on gun control advocates in social media with his classic brand of intelligence and sharp wit, often leaving them in the dust.”
As news of Owens’ death spread on social media, many people expressed sadness. Others hit back at pro gun control supporters who made political statements about Owens’ death. (Heavy.com)
Of course, there was so much more to Bob than just a couple of dry paragraphs.
From Bob, himself:
About the Author
Written By: Bob
Bob Owens is native of North Carolina who began blogging at the politics-focused Confederate Yankee in November 2004 before transitioning to this site in 2011.
In August of 2013 he has been the editor of Townhall’s Second Amendment web site, BearingArms.com, where he now does most of his writing.
Prior to Bearing Arms, Bob was a contributing writer at Pajamas Media and Shooting Illustrated,
He also does Twitter.
He is currently working on his first novel, The Long Way Home, and has published a short Kindle e-book for people interested in purchasing their first firearm, entitled So You Want to Own a Gun. He is a Rifleman and volunteer instructor in the Appleseed Project, where he shares stories of our history and heritage and teaches rifle marksmanship, but mainly likes to play Line Boss.
He is married to the girl of his dreams, and they have two children.
I was told during an extremely low time in my life that being a father meant suicide was no longer an option. In spite of this, I’m not judging Bob – who knows what demons resided in his psyche?
Godspeed, Bob – Requiescat in pacem
(PLEASE – If you are distraught, or worse, ask for help! Everyone, whether they realize it or not, has friends and family who care about them. Don’t take this path! – Guffaw)
Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
(from TFB, in part)
Brink’s Adopts The FN 509 | The First FN 509 Contract Awarded
As much as people want to shun the FN 509 for being yet another polymer framed striker gun that is easy to overlook the hidden greatness, Brink’s saw the benefit in the new plastic wonder gun. The adoption of the FN 509 by Brink’s marks the first major purchase of the 509 since it was announced on April 17, 2017.
There is no word on how many pistols Brink’s has purchased and what the details of the sale were other than a Dallas, Texas based FN Law Enforcement Dealer called TK Tactical brokered the deal between Brink’s and FN’s law enforcement sales team.
We have previously covered the FN 509 on TFB TV and found the pistol to be a hidden gem that many will no doubt overlook when they are in the gunstore. If large contracts like the Brink’s one continue to be awarded to the FN pistol I expect we will see a ton more of the pistols in civilian hands.
The press release can be found HERE, but I have pasted it below.
(McLean, VA – April 25, 2017) FN America, LLC, the manufacturer of the world’s most battle-proven firearms, announces the award of a long-term firearms contract by Brink’s, Incorporated, a premier provider of secure logistics and security solutions throughout the United States. After extensive testing of all major pistol manufacturers over the course of nine months, Brink’s has selected the all-new FN 509™ striker-fired 9mm pistol and will issue the new sidearm to its armed security guards.
FN’s law enforcement sales team worked with TK Tactical, an FN Law Enforcement Distributor based in Dallas, Texas, to develop the lead, and then directly with Brink’s to provide a firearms solution that met and exceeded the needs of its armed personnel. The first order of pistols will begin shipping in early June. Brink’s Incorporated, is the first major private security company to adopt the FN 509 since its official release in April 2017.
“We are proud to announce the contract with Brink’s, Incorporated,” said Mark Cherpes, President and CEO for FN America, LLC. “Like FN, Brink’s has a long and honored history. Brink’s is one of the most iconic private security firms in the world. The decision to purchase the FN 509 is an important achievement for our organization. It is validation of the hard work that our team put into designing, producing and supporting this pistol.”
The FN 509 was born out of the company’s effort to produce a contender for the U.S. Army’s Modular Handgun System (MHS) competition and has been further enhanced to meet the needs of U.S. law enforcement and commercial customers. Built on the proven architecture of the FNS™ Compact, FN made changes internally and externally to meet the rigorous performance standards of the MHS requirements and further developed the platform into the FN 509 with help from industry experts. Over the course of development, the platform has been tested extensively for reliability, ammunition compatibility and durability – totaling more than 1 million rounds.
Check out FN America online for more information about the FN 509.
Times have changed. Traditionally, private security has followed the coattails of the military and police, many times with mixed results. It took years for the civilian police to follow the military from revolvers to semiautomatics and even more for private security to get on board.
Perhaps because most private security has less stringent training than the police, and pays less to support it.
I recall working for another national security company, in the late 70’s. The post-issued weapon was a Colt Official Police revolver, of early manufacture, complete with five green rounds of .38 Special in the six-round cylinder. Issued in a right-handed Hunter holster (I’m left handed.) No reloads were supplied, and no training/qualification offered.
AND, the barrel was LOOSE! I never pulled on it, for fear it would separate from the frame!
(Fortunately, my Captain permitted me to carry my Ruger Security Six, on long-term loan from Dave-the-mechanic (thanks. again, Dave!), a gun I had shot competitively with (and now own – thanks yet again, Dave!)
It nice to see Brink’s stepping up to obtain quality firearms for it’s troops. Hopefully, they will be issued to all, not just the elite of the service.
And, properly trained-for and maintained…
When I was growing up, most of my friends were named after parents or relatives. A few juniors. Common Anglo Saxon names – Thomas, Susan, George, John.
Names that were from grandparents were thought of as old fashioned. Martha, Edith, etc. Black people had Anglo names, for the most part.
Other ethnic names were just that. Guadalupe (Lupe), Juan. Not to many other options. There was one Jesus (Hey-soos’), which the P.E. teacher consistently mispronounced!
We were a predominantly white bread college town.
As I have often said before – the times, they are a changin’…
My nieces are named Rilyn and Karsyn. A good friend’s grand baby is Sagan Universe!
Now Thomas and Susan are the old-fashioned names!
Don’t get me wrong. I’m all about honoring ethnic and/or family history. I’m named for my maternal and fraternal grandfather. German and Irish stock! (Didn’t know Guffaw was Germanic, did you?) 😛
Don’t even get me started on the ethnic names! My favorite (oft repeated on the Internet) is the woman who named her child La-a. Then was furious when people couldn’t spell or pronounce it correctly! People said Luh-uh, Lay, all manner of wrong pronunciations.
Her name was pronounced LAH DASH UH!!
I miss names like Linda and Mike…
Guess I’m old.
When I was growing up, there were numerous Westerns on television. Being raised by TV, I was familiar with most. One of them was The Rifleman (1958-1963).
The Rifleman, aka Lucas McCain, was played to his macho hilt by Chuck Connors, a 6’5″ athlete (from Wikipedia, in part):
Kevin Joseph Aloysius “Chuck” Connors (April 10, 1921 – November 10, 1992) was an American actor, writer and professional basketball and baseball player. He is one of only 12 athletes in the history of American professional sports to have played both Major League Baseball and in the National Basketball Association. With a 40-year film and television career, he is best known for his five-year role as Lucas McCain in the highly rated ABC series The Rifleman (1958–63).
There was a book, first published in 1965, entitled Hollywood Babylon. There have been two subsequent printings. The book went out of it’s way to defame the famous in Hollywood, mentioning the scandals, the rumors, the crime, the ‘dirt’ for which the public was so hungry. Sal Mineo, Sharon Tate, Jayne Mansfield et al.
I don’t believe Chuck was mentioned in any of them.
The theme of the TV show was almost always (TV violence aside), a lesson which Lucas (a widower) would impart to his young son, Mark. I remember one particular episode wherein the lecture was (at the end of the show after much gunfighting) regarding people who are different. And just because they are different, doesn’t automatically make them BAD. And how we, as honest human beings should strive to be accepting of such folk.
Of course, I was a kid, so this message went over my head. When I saw the show again years later, some additional context was added.
An acquaintance, who has been a professional gun writer for many years, happened to see Chuck Connors at a large California gun show. IN FULL DRAG! – complete with a wig and makeup! This was a short time before he passed away.
This is not to defame Mr. Connors, but to suggest perhaps he and the TV show writers had a meeting-of-the-minds (?)
There are further rumors regarding Mr. Connors behavior all over the Internet. As there are with pretty much anyone regarded as ‘famous’.
Just because it says so on the Internet doesn’t make it true! – Abraham Lincoln
I remember sharing this tale with a collections manager @ TMCCC* (my last workplace). He ran away from me, covering his ears as though he were five years old! Obviously, I had been messing with a macho hero of his!
Be judicious with whom you share this tale.
*That Major Credit Card Company