Sometime in her High School years, my daughter realized she was going to be too tall to be a ballerina (she's 5'9") but enjoyed sharing her love of dance with the younger kids. Subsequently, she focused like a laser on becoming a school teacher. About the only class she took that wasn't directly related to getting a teaching degree was a class in paleontology after seeing Jurrassic Park and reading a bit about Robert Baker. Her then boyfriend would have been more than happy to spend his days out in the blazing sun, digging and recording, but her; not so much.
When she started her teaching career, she had no tenure, so spent a while paying her dues; having a new classroom to get ready every year, a new grade, a new lesson plan, sometimes a new school, as budgets expanded and contracted over the years. Finally, she settled in a small town in Northern Sonoma County here in California. She's been there for eight years, tenured at last. Her then boyfriend became her husband and went to work in the same area as a biologist for the state.
He describes his job as a professional hiker and fish counter. There is also a fair amount of paper generation going on-every job seems to leave that off the brochures, but you can bet it's somewhere in the fine print. The paper you generate is proof that you exist, and lists what you have accomplished. In his case, they were funded by the Feds, and so had twice as many people to impress.
When that actor we elected to lead our imaginary paradise looked for ways to trim spending, in his wisdom, he took on Cops, Nurses, and Teachers, three of the most respected occupations in America, and decided that they were the ones who weren't pulling their weight. Besides, they didn't seem to be ready to get down and dirty if they were crossed, like the Prison Guards. Cops and Nurses turned out to be pretty tough cookies themselves, so he eventually went after education as the source of all of our troubles, and tried to weasel out of prop 98 provisions that wouldn't allow him to take money from education to plug a leak somewhere else. Arnold Swartznegger is the mother of all girlie-men.
All this has had a devastating effect on their family (two gorgeous daughters) as the clowns in Sacramento try to find still another way of passing the problem on to someone else and hold on to their own petty fiefdoms. The legislature, in a stunning show of non-partisanship, drew up districts that made them all pretty much the 'property' of one party or the other. This is one reason, of course, why both Democrats and Republicans are so intransigent on matters of 'principal'--they fear their own party apparatus more than they do their own voters.
Part of Swartznegger's plan seems to be to put pressure on these pigs by keeping their snouts out of the trough, and making life precarious for state employees as well--that'll show em, by God. My daughter has already been told she doesn't have a job any more--there's just no money, school starts next week. My son-in-law, even though he works on a project that recieves it's funding from the Federal Government, has been on mandatory work furloughs most of the year. The Gubernator somehow thinks it will make his position stronger if he puts off some pay owed to state employees until some time in the future when we have all the money we need, and we all speak perfect French and have six percent body fat. We can make it all up then. In the meantime, he wants to pay state employees minimum wage.
They shouldn't worry about this, because the money will be made up when they finally get a budget--they'll just have to dig a little bigger hole for next year as they pay everybody back for this year. I'm sure PG&E, the mortgage company, the grocery store, and the water and garbage people will be understanding and allow them to fall in arreers for however long it takes our brave legislators to fight for their principals. They are a couragous bunch, and are willing to sacrifice every last state employee in defence of their sacred ideology.
If you have any kids who are at a point in their life where they have some career decisions to make, I strongly recommend seeking work with some totally amoral, faceless corporation, like BP or a health insurance company. Those people are much more dependable, and seem to value their people more.
Causes David Beemer Supports
Wife works as an advocate for Seniors. Sponser a child through World Vision