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Posted on November 18 at 8:21 p.m.
For what its worth, I'm an engineer working in the private high tech sector. I often work with engineers from NASA. I have the utmost respect for their technical skills. Anyway, for similar experience and skills, the NASA engineers that I know make about 35% less, at least the ones I've talked to about this sort of thing. The guys I'm thinking about live in a somewhat lower cost area (greater D.C.).
They get more holidays, and the medical benefits are comparable. I don't know about their retirement.
This is just one person's example, though.
On Capps Pauses on Proposals
Posted on November 16 at 10:21 p.m.
Hard to argue that our taxes are not going far enough. I'm not convinced though that gaining maximum efficiency will be enough to dig us out of the hole we're in. My sense is that it will take both spending cuts and tax increases to really do it.
Your basic question is a good one. I'd say I have much the same question. What am I personally willing to sacrifice to fix our budget woes? I would be lying if I said I knew with certainty.
To be honest, I'd be willing to chip in more (I'm not sure exactly what yet), if it goes toward fixing our problems, making it sustainable, and as corny as this will sound, a little basic humanity.
Some big ifs, I know.
Anyway, good luck with those kids in college. Its expensive, but it feels good.
On Three Demands for Obama
Posted on November 16 at 8:28 p.m.
Sounds like I'm in about the same place as you, right down to having two kids in top 20 private colleges. Strangely enough, I don't feel unfairly taxed.
Regardless, your comment regarding education is right on the mark. I could not agree more!
Also, I saw that same NY Times feature. Other posters might be interested in it (I found it fascinating), so here's a link:
Posted on November 2 at 6:25 p.m.
Well, I don't know about green laboratories. I think I'll reserve judgement until the failure report is published.
Its hard to tell from the article, but it implies the design puts a concrete joint in tension, which makes me a little nervous. Maybe someone can post a link(s) to information about the basic design?
On Ceiling Collapses at UCSB
Posted on October 27 at 7:15 p.m.
With respect to your earlier comments regarding Government's role in wealth and job creation, I wanted to bring a little counterpoint.
The government actually can play a vital role, with respect to research and development. Most companies these days, particularly those publicly traded, have difficulty making long term R&D investments. Their shareholders usually require a shorter term ROI, and this creates pressure to fund only that R&D which has a short term return. Of course, along with this is a lower risk threshold for that investment.
The government can (and does) perform longer-term R&D investment which has higher risk or may not provide a return at all in the short term. However, this R&D may have a huge return in the long term. Further, this R&D may not have any commercialization potential, but can still provide large benefits to society as a whole.
I'm sure we would not need to think too hard to find other examples where the government aids wealth and job creation. R&D is just an example I am very familiar with.
Yet more food for thought (this thread is a veritable feast!)
On Republicans in Paradise
Posted on October 26 at 8:04 p.m.
Since you keep linking the Spanish report, I'll keep linking the U.S. Department of Energy analysis of that study (I posted this link to in an earlier thread, but you appear to have missed it):
Just as I did then, I'll quote from its conclusions:
"The recent report from King Juan Carlos University deviates from the traditional research methodologies used to estimate jobs impacts. In addition, it lacks transparency and supporting statistics, and fails to compare RE [renewable energy] technologies with comparable energy industry metrics. It also fails to account for important issues such as the role of government in emerging markets, the success of RE exports in Spain, and the fact that induced economic impacts can be attributed to RE deployment. Finally, differences in policy are significant enough that the results of analysis conducted in the Spanish context are not likely to be indicative of workforce impacts in the United States or other countries."
For an added bonus, here's a couple of interesting links from today's news:
The first describes recent progress on the Blythe Solar Power project being built by Solar Millennium (an Oakland company) (one of several projects very close to beginning construction); $6B project, 1000 Mw, enough power for 300,000 homes. Its a pretty big project, with jobs and everything (I imagine the construction phase alone will employee quite a few).
The next link is about how foreign alternative energy technology companies are setting up shop here in California. Nothing like attracting business here to our state, with jobs to go with it.
A Win-Win (renewable energy and jobs). With evidence like this, I'd say our letter writers are right on target.
On Maintaining Standards
Posted on October 25 at 10:38 p.m.
As our past posts have shown, you and I having opposing views on most topics under consideration in this election. I don't have a strong desire to debate these at this late date... I've already made my choices. Given the bombardment of the airwaves, etc., by candidates and interested parties of all stripes, anyone paying attention has probably made their choices, too.
However, I find myself in agreement with you regarding Prop. 13. It is in bad need of reform (of course, I'd apply reform to corporate property taxes as well as individuals). Regardless, I'm convinced that none of the current batch of candidates will have the political courage to tackle this.
But I keep hoping!!
Posted on October 16 at 11:50 a.m.
Thank you, Sue.
And thank you Binky. As usual, you are spot on.
And to "jukin": please try to be an adult. You can do it! Research your facts, be careful about their attribution, and be respectful in their presentation. That way, folks won't dismiss you outright, as is the case now.
On Democrats, Rouse Yourselves!
Posted on October 7 at 8:45 p.m.
I can't believe I'm going to say this, but regarding Prop 13 JohnLocke is on to something. Do you suppose it is finally time to re-evaluate the 3rd rail of California politics?
6dolphins, that video is hysterical!
On Curing California
Posted on October 1 at 9:11 p.m.
I just noticed the new pole. Least favorite? Putting folks on both best and least is tricky!! So maybe there's hope for you and your brethren yet.
On Mad as Hell Doctors March in Santa Barbara