Hello Fred

Philosophy | Politics | Religion

Month: July 2015



The US population is 322 million and will reach between 323 and 458 million by 2050 depending on levels of migration to the US. There is a need to control population growth in the United States and our immigration policy should include that goal.  School enrollment and participation in programs such as Social Security and Medicare are affected by how quickly and the extent to which the overall population grows.

The current percentages of population by race is as follows: White 63%; Black 13%; Asian 5%; Native 2%; Hispanic 17%. The United States is expected to experience significant increases in racial and ethnic diversity over the next four decades. Asian and Hispanic populations are the primary immigrant groups to the United States and are projected to more than double in size between 2000 and 2050.

The Hispanic population is the only racial or ethnic group projected to maintain fertility that is above replacement level. The Hispanic population is projected to more than double between 2000 and 2050, while the Asian population is projected to increase by 79 percent.

While there is a need to provide a permanent home and citizenship for non-citizens that know no other home than the one they are living, there are going to be arguments that will stem from the white majority that want to remain the white Protestant majority that will influence the path to citizenship for those that are productive law abiding residents that were not born here or approved to be here.

Rethinking the Role of Unions

Rethinking the Role of Unions–

The time has come where unions and business can no longer remain operational adversaries.

The goal is to work together to keep and maintain the best workforce and do it by culling out workers that are not psychologically suited for the jobs they are in, especially those individual police and corrections workers, that are non-productive non-reliable workers and non-team players.

Remaining workers should be rewarded with training, profit sharing, positive work environments, promotions, full benefit packages, and a fair base salary/wage.

If CEO’s get bonuses and profit sharing then all employees should get bonuses and profit sharing. Union dues would still be paid.

Unions need to serve the workers that are not well suited for their current jobs by helping  them learn new job skills and finding them new jobs where they can excel.

There was a time when unions needed to exercise political influence.  Workers whose formal education ended at high school and mostly performed manual work, typically did not acquire the abstract thinking required to appreciate complex, pluralistic solutions to political problems.  Labor unions tended to inculcate civic virtues in its members, pushing them to think and vote in a more enlightened way.

Times have changed. Today, unions no longer represent the large number of people that need enlightened thinking.  In the post-World War II era, one in three American workers belonged to a union; now it’s down to one in 10. In terms of representing the traditional working class, the number is even smaller, since a large and growing share of union members consists of public sector employees with college degrees (like teachers).

In a study of 16 European nations, the political scientists Christoph Arndt and Line Rennwald found that in general employees covered by collective bargaining agreements feel less threatened by the social changes that agitate far-right ideologues. (It is not an accident of history that Hitler abolished German trade unions as part of his consolidation of power, or that farmers and small business owners were more sympathetic to the Nazi cause than were industrial workers reared on unionism.)

In 2014, 14.6% of the 189 million people working in the United States were members of a union. 7.2 million employees in the public sector belonged to a union, compared with 7.4 million workers in the private sector. The union membership rate for public-sector workers (35.7 percent) was substantially higher than the rate for private-sector workers (6.6 percent).

Within the public sector, the union membership rate was highest for local government (41.9 percent), which includes employees in heavily unionized occupations, such as teachers, police officers, and firefighters. In the private sector, industries with high unionization rates included utilities (22.3 percent), transportation and warehousing (19.6 percent), telecommunications (14.8 percent), and construction (13.9 percent).


Gun Control-Background Checks

Gun Control–Background Checks–

Firearms are generally classified into three broad types: (1) handguns, (2) rifles, and (3) shotguns.  A semi-automatic firearm fires one bullet each time the trigger is pulled, ejects the shell of the fired bullet, and automatically loads another bullet for the next pull of the trigger.  A fully automatic firearm (sometimes called a “machine gun”) fires multiple bullets with the single pull of the trigger.

The U.S. firearm homicide rate is 20 times higher than the combined rates of 22 countries that are our peers in wealth and population. A gun in the home is 22 times more likely to be used to kill or injure in a domestic homicide, suicide, or unintentional shooting than to be used in self-defense.

Nine out of 10 Americans agree that we should have universal background checks, including three out of four NRA members. Since the Brady Law was initially passed, about 2 million attempts to purchase firearms have been blocked due to a background check. About half of these blocked attempts were by felons.

The current background check system only applies to about 60% of gun sales, leaving 40% (online sales, purchases at gun shows, etc.) without a background check. Progress on obtaining any kind of gun control legislation has been negligible and is partly due to gun control becoming a wedge issue between the two parties.

Might we have background checks on 100% of gun purchases and support detailed eligibility criteria for existing ownership and future purchases of automatic weapons and large clips for semi-automatic weapons? Might we restrict gun purchases for those that are on No-Flight Lists?

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