Several weeks ago I changed my work desk to a standing desk. I spend 10 hours a day working at a computer. After a year and a half of discussing it, one of my coworkers changed over. A couple of weeks later I pulled the trigger. Our two desks was quite the novelty for sometime, people kept coming by and looking at them, standing behind them, commenting on them, and asking us questions.
We went cold turkey, no easing in to it, no sitting part of the time and standing part of the time. From sitting 40+ hours per week to standing. The first week or so was pretty rough. By the end of the day I would be pretty sore. Now, I can’t imagine going back.
Now we have a third coworker who is in process of changing over and a manager from a different department who has adopted a stand up desk routine. Perhaps more will give it a try in the future, I’ll keep you posted on the process.
The first lesson learned: good shoes and an anti-fatigue mat are a must!
Standing desks may not be for everyone, but if you decide to try it out, let me know. We can compare notes.
“Over the last few years, both parties have worked together to reduce the deficit by more than $2.5 trillion – mostly through spending cuts, but also by raising tax rates on the wealthiest 1 percent of Americans. As a result, we are more than halfway towards the goal of $4 trillion in deficit reduction that economists say we need to stabilize our finances.
Now we need to finish the job. And the question is, how?
In 2011, Congress passed a law saying that if both parties couldn’t agree on a plan to reach our deficit goal, about a trillion dollars’ worth of budget cuts would automatically go into effect this year. These sudden, harsh, arbitrary cuts would jeopardize our military readiness. They’d devastate priorities like education, energy, and medical research. They would certainly slow our recovery, and cost us hundreds of thousands of jobs. That’s why Democrats, Republicans, business leaders, and economists have already said that these cuts, known here in Washington as “the sequester,” are a really bad idea.”
In his TEA Party response, Rand Paul pointed out:
“The President does a big “woe is me” over the $1.2 trillion sequester that he endorsed and signed into law. Some Republicans are joining him. Few people understand that the sequester doesn’t even cut any spending. It just slows the rate of growth. Even with the sequester, government will grow over $7 trillion over the next decade.
Only in Washington could an increase of $7 trillion in spending over a decade be called a cut.
So, what is the President’s answer? Over the past four years he has added over $6 trillion in new debt and may well do the same in a second term. What solutions does he offer? He takes entitlement reform off the table and seeks to squeeze more money out of the private sector.”
Over the next few weeks we are going to hear the rhetoric on the sequester ratchet up to an all new level. We should all remember that this sequester law was approved by both parties when it was written and the President was happy to sign his name to it.
Politicians love to tell us how cuts are going to affect teachers, firemen, police, and hospitals because that scares us. What should scare us our spiraling debt with no end in sight. Or the fact we are spending our kids and grandkids money. Money that even the ones who aren’t born yet hasn’t even earned is being frittered away in the name of “investment”. Investments should have a return, we are barreling toward a point of no return.
A couple of weeks ago Kentucky’s General Assembly started their 2013 session. They started this year with a short session, only meeting 4 days. Being the political junkie I am, I was thrilled to learn that KET had a website that streamed both the House and Senate Sessions. I couldn’t wait to tune in.
On the first day I logged in and watched the House. It went something like this: gavel in, make some announcements, give the representatives a few minutes to make comment and introduce their guests there watching them, file some bill numbers with the clerk, and adjourn. The entire process took about an hour. The next three days followed about the same format.
I was left thinking what the heck just happened? Our state has a huge fiscal crisis facing us. I remember thinking I would be pretty pissed if I were elected to office and had to drive all the way to Frankfort every day for this!
But this is what happens on the surface, the part we see. What was really happening was going on before and after the session. The first day, after they adjourned, the Republican and Democrat caucuses met individually in different rooms and elected leadership. There is also time for committees to meet, which is where the actual bills are written before being brought to the floor.
While I was disappointed that there wasn’t more to watch, I know that may be hard to believe, I know that my Representative and Senator was at work. We need to remember that there is a lot more to politics than what we see on the surface. On the positive side there are groups meeting to write and refine legislation. On the flip side, there are the backroom deals securing votes and meeting with lobbyists (watch “Lincoln” and think of Ben Nelson (D-NE) and the Cornhusker Kickback deal during the Obamacare passage).
That is why it is important for us to be ever vigilant and be an informed voter. In politics what you see is not always what you get.
“You never want a serious crisis to go to waste. And what I mean by that is an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before.” So said Rahm Emanuel, President Obama’s former Chief of Staff, and it seems every politician in America is piling on.
While the parasites of the network news outlets were still shoving microphones in the faces of grieving residents of Newtown, the politicians in Washington were already politicizing a tragedy.
Rep. John Yarmuth, D-KY, has jumped on the bandwagon with his share of statements. Yarmuth said he has been quiet for too long on gun control. Yes, he has. Where was his outrage when the Obama justice department failed to classify the Ft. Hood shooting as what it was, a terrorist attack by a Muslim extremist, instead of “workplace violence”. Where was his outrage when the Obama justice department purposefully allowed “assault weapons” to be sold to known Mexican drug cartels under the Fast and Furious program? Did he release statements when this resulted in the murder of an American border patrol agent, 300 Mexican men, women, and children, and now Mexican beauty pageant winner Maria Susana Flores Gamez, using Department of Justice supplied guns? Where is his outrage on the torture and brutal murder of our Libyan ambassador?
Now Rep. Yarmuth is all for stricter gun laws, facts be damned. He doesn’t care that FBI statistics show gun related violent crimes are declining, while gun ownership is up. Does he really think some nut case intent on committing a violent crime is going to have second thoughts because they will be breaking a gun law?
Rep. Yarmuth is doing what career politicians do best, seizing an emotional moment to run off at the mouth and pass onerous legislation affecting only law abiding citizens. Yarmuth said in his statement, “…And while no specific gun regulation may have prevented the deaths of the 20 Sandy Hook Elementary children, 6 and 7-year-old children, the answer simply cannot be a gun in every elementary school lunchbox.”
Really? Has anyone advocated arming 6 and 7-year-olds, giving them guns to carry in their lunch boxes? Rep. Yarmuth and many others who govern by knee jerk reaction admit that the very gun control law they want to pass would not have stopped the shootings in Newtown, or Aurora, or Ft. Hood.
Meanwhile Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-OH, is out negotiating with himself on trying to stop us from going over the fiscal cliff, President Obama is packing for his next vacation, and Sen. Harry Reid, the top dog in the Senate, has yet to bring up a budget vote for the last four years and blames Mitch McConnell, the minority leader, for obstructing everything.
Here’s a novel idea for politicians–do your job! Pass a budget, get our debt under control, and get off our backs. Morality can no more be legislated than a politician can pass up a television camera. There is an old saying– you’re either part of the problem or you’re part of the solution. It seems Washington is bent on trampling over the solution to become a bigger part of the problem.
In 2011 Berea “invested” a fairly significant amount of money in bringing in business consultant Michael Shuman to help us with economic development. Mr. Shuman did some analysis, held a couple of meetings, and facilitated the startup of several committees to focus on different areas identified as potential growth areas.
A web page was started, updates were also on the City of Berea web page, and Mr. Shuman cashed his check and went home. Today there is no evidence of Mr. Shuman’s work here other than a few outdated posts on the city’s web page. Do we have anything to show for our investment? Are any of the committees still meeting? Has even one idea that came out of this expensive program been implemented?
We have our own Director of Business Development on the payroll. Mr. Tom McCay. I have yet to see a report from him on any results of this or other projects in work.
Every council meeting the city administrator, Randy Stone, stands up and gives a report on paving projects, on drainage projects, and on lighting projects. Everything he reports on is revenue negative. It is costing us money. Why isn’t Mr. McCay, our economic development director, giving a report every council meeting? Shouldn’t he be reporting on his work with the small business community in Berea? Shouldn’t he report on his work with the large businesses that support Berea so much with their payroll and property taxes? Shouldn’t he report on the work he is doing in recruiting new businesses to locate to Berea? These are all things that should be revenue positive to Berea.
Perhaps our ROI in economic development is one area the city needs to take a hard look at.