Republican Leaders Need to Become Americans

The post title pretty much says it all. Speaking as someone who was born a Republican, until the current leaders fall off the end of the actuarial tables, no member of my party should hold public office. Thankfully House Speaker John Boehner is from Ohio. He left Washington without getting a farm bill done and when he is up for election again he will learn that any elected official from the corn belt who does that doesn’t remain elected.

It won’t just be the Ag community which ensures he never holds a job again. Bush has a brewery in Columbus, OH which, according to their Web site, produces 235 trucks of beverages per day. That requires a massive quantity of grain. No brewer, baker, or ethanol maker can afford to have a year where American farmers choose not to plant what they need because they couldn’t purchase crop insurance for it. Neither Mitt Romney nor his baker has a clue when it comes to agriculture, but they will certainly wise up the day the local supermarket starts charging $19.95 for a loaf of store brand bread because nobody planted wheat.

Think it won’t happen? Guess again. Cash rent charged by land holders is currently astronomical. Most of the highest cash rent land is being strip mined. Oh, you won’t find a gigantic hole in the ground. To find the evidence of this mining you have to get a soil test. Most investment companies have people even more clueless than the current group of GOP leaders “managing” the land. All they care about is this quarter’s numbers. I have yet to encounter one smart enough to put the current soil test results into the contract AND have a clause which states the land must be maintained or above those levels with associated damages and repercussions. In short, much of this land currently renting out for north of $350/acre won’t sell for $350/acre in a few years because all buyers will be demanding current soil tests and valuing the land based on its actual fertility, not what the Realtor posts on their Web site.

Now we have the party which is supposed to be “for business” shutting down the government and toying with defaulting on national debt? Seriously? You let a handful of terrorists into your party and you let them take hostages? Do you really think you are ever going to hold office again?

You have spin doctors outright lying in the press when it comes to Obamacare. I mean, as a regular tax paying citizen it appears to me there would be an awful lot of “political advisors” and “spin doctors” in prison if the Justice Department ever enforced the truth in advertising laws when it comes to political ads and commercials. Can one serve in Washington if one is a convicted felon?

I realize the bulk of you were bought and paid for by the pharmaceutical industry. That is why you are so against something so good. That is also why Medicare is not allowed to negotiate drug prices. If Medicare were allowed to negotiate drug and service prices it would cost about half of what it does now. More importantly, we as tax payers wouldn’t have to read stories  about huge corporations (your campaign contributors?) settling fraud cases.

While you are at it, quit making incredibly false statements about why AARP backed Obamacare and grossly exaggerating the Medicare money which was spent, not cut, spent, just like you spent our Social Security Dollars by “borrowing” from the fund and replacing the money with a worthless IOU. The money which was spent didn’t actually impact any current AARP members. In fact, your blocking Medicare from being able to negotiate drug and service prices like any other insurance company dramatically slashed benefits for all Medicare recipients while leaving the door open for massive fraud. Why would AARP back it? Because the vast majority of Americans who aren’t bribing politicians via Super PACs and other means or currently gaming the system for health insurance like elected officials wanted it. Making the denial of coverage for preexisting medical conditions a criminal offense was the greatest thing to ever happen to the American health care industry.  That impacts every current and future AARP member not yet old enough for Medicare.  Shrinking the donut hole also saved existing AARP members a ton of cash.

If you want to really “fix” health care in America you need to mandate one other change. All health insurance policies must be accompanied by a life insurance policy issued by the same company not subbed out to avoid the cost. This policy must pay a minimum of $300K upon death and have a rider which states death due to denial of care pay out a minimum of $5 million. This will stop the denial of care for profit scam which ran a muck with HMOs according to the tear filled testimony before Congress of one doctor’s confession of murder for profit by denying care they knew would save a life.

It’s quite simple. No American would ever have created a tax break for companies to send American jobs and factories over seas. No American would ever block a repeal of that tax break. No American would ever put forth a candidate for president which had either offshored American jobs or replaced American workers with H1-b obtained by making completely false claims about a worker shortage. There never was an IT worker shortage, even the Wall Street Journal and CNBC have come to that conclusion. What there is a shortage of is upper management with enough ethics to pay the actual market rate. No American would even joke about trashing the countries credit rating, let alone actually do it more than once? So where does that leave you Mr./Ms./Mrs. Elected GOP member?

 

The Mythical IT Shortage

It seems you cannot turn on a newscast or read a business magazine these days without hearing about this mythical IT shortage. I’ve been hearing about it for years. The truth is, there is a glut of IT talent on the market. While the industry rags have been quoting the lowest unemployment for IT professionals in ages, they strategically waited until enough had been on unemployment so long they fell off. It is legal fraud, but fraud none-the-less.

Quite simply the industry marketing…err…I mean analyst firms are getting paid a lot of money to say anything which will justify boosting the cap for $10.00/day employees. There hasn’t been a shortage of IT talent since prior to 1990. If the country keeps up its trend of off-shoring there will be a devastating shortage of home grown IT skills in less than 8 years. That will be about the time we see Enron type trials happening for the companies which have been hiding off-shore failures in the books. We have been seeing a lot of claims about off-shoring success, but we haven’t seen any actual success. The difference between a claimed success and an actual success is quite simply, the claim. When you have a new system or enhancement which is an actual success, you don’t have to tell anyone. The business simply works better and it is obvious to all who do business with it.

The Truth

The truth about how well the off-shore thing has been working is now apparent in the trade press for those who know how to read it. Multi-million dollar contract cancellations. Lots of new off-shore contracts running significantly less than 2 years in length. In the past these deals were running 5+ years in length. That just doesn’t happen anymore. You can only hide so much in the books before the auditors uncover it.

Here is a simple test you can all perform. Go to a contracting Web site like Dice.com or some other site you frequent. Pick a skill set which is not widely available. Scan the contracts and keep a log of them. Return every month and scan again. What you will see is the same requirement moving from pimp to pimp to pimp not getting filled. The reason isn’t a shortage of skills, but a shortage of business ethics.

Evidence of the Mythical IT Shortage

A while back I was contacted about an OpenVMS FORTRAN gig by a recruiter who couldn’t speak English. I recognized the requirements and the general location enough to know what the billing rate was there two years ago. It used to pay up to $90.00/hr to the consultant. The pimp which called me was looking to pay under $40.00/hr. If there really was a shortage of IT people that contract would be offering $110-150/hr. I followed the listing for a few months, watching it move from pimp to pimp, then lost interest. I don’t think it ever got filled. I’m pretty sure management used it as a justification for going off-shore or for violating a student visa.

For anyone willing to look at the details it is easy to see there is no IT skills shortage. Contracting rates have not climbed into the deep three digit per hour range and starting salaries for employees have not sky rocketed. No, my friends, this is just a new spin on an old scam.

I’m old enough to remember when there was a shortage of IT professionals. In those days, you didn’t post your resume anywhere, but you got at least three phone calls per week from recruiters offering up jobs paying more than your current job. Normally you held out until you got either a really great position, or doubled your money. People generally stayed places less than two years and doubled their salary at least every 4 years. Now, the salary you get hired at is pretty much the salary you will die with unless you move into management.

There is no shortage of IT people, only a shortage of ethics.