Disabled Federal Employees and Competition

April 18, 2005 at 12:19 PM (Employment) ()

The above title links to an article in the Washington Post today about the collateral damage done to the employability of disabled people who work for the federal government.

“Keep up or ‘die’ “That’s the refrain that went through my head almost every day during my last years of employment in the private sector. My typing was slow to begin with, but my brain stayed quick, so what they call ‘job knowledge’and sometimes, macros on individual systems allowed me to “cheat” and enter data more quickly. I learned faster and typed more slowly than my co workers, a combination that eventually became one lethal factor in the five different reasons I find myself on disability.

Now, in an effort to increase effeciency on the job our president wants to outsource tasks now handled by federal employees to private contractors. It will save the government money on the one hand, and cost many disabled workers their jobs, since “keeping up” and being “efficient” are the edge they often don’t meet. Laziness has *nothing* to do with it. The “targets” of the private contractor will not be met by some disabled workers, not through lack of ability, or trying, or learning, just as a fact of their physical or mental limits. For every disabled worker displaced there will be the possibility of the following costs:

Job retrainning.
Unemployment compensation
Disability benefits
Medicare or Medicaid

We all know we spend too much on the above already so this will end up *costing the government money * over the long term.

Ever hear of a “cost-benefit analysis,” Mr. President? I’d dearly love to see one done on the costs of say 60% of the disabled workers not being able to be efficient enough to meet targets, thus their *cost* increases, compared to the savings projected in outsourcing these tasks to private contractors.


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"What a Swell Party…"

April 18, 2005 at 9:43 AM (Movies)

Just saw “De-Lovely.” Now, you may wonder why am I posting about films that are six or more months old?

It’s how I do movies now …annoying but still doable.

Anyway, it’s the story of Cole Porter…the story of Cole Porter where you cannot take your eyes off of Ashley Judd, playing his wife…wardrobe and actress come together in an amazing portrayal of a woman who knew just how the deck was stacked, but came to play anyway.

The concept of the entire movie being a musical about Cole Porter’s life was a good idea with mixed results, with current musical well-knowns belting out his tunes. (My three favorites “Birds Do It” sung by Alanis Morrisette, “Begin the Beguine,” sung by Cheryl Crow, and “Every Time We Say Goodbye,” sung by Natalie Cole. )

Kevin Kline did his usual great job, but there was something about the script, something I can’t put my finger on…(maybe the theater/film/music cousins can help me out here)….the movie should have been excellent, but ended up only fair. (Sadly, kinda like Porter’s marriage.)

I still reccomend it for the music, and the dead on evocation of Porter’s circle and the era…

It’s not the best party it could have been, but there’s still plenty of great music…Rent it, or buy it…

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