Archive for August 3rd, 2010

Won’t Someone Think Of The Oil Companies?

Shorter Jonah Goldberg: The offshore drilling ban is the real tragedy of the Gulf.

No, really.  Because he has cheerfully embraced Michael Grunwald’s happy propaganda story about how the oil is all dissolving and everything’s going to be fine and the environmental impact isn’t really a big deal at all (um, right).  He also appears to embrace Grunwald’s assumption that any dead animal carcasses that are not obviously covered with oil must therefore have died of natural causes.  Either that or he’s incredibly dishonest, but surely that can’t be true, right?

Some birds were oiled and died, always a sad sight. But according to Time magazine, the number of birds killed is — so far — less than 1 percent of the avian casualties of the Exxon Valdez. And to date, only three oiled mammal carcasses have been recovered. Three.

Wow, three sure is a small number, isn’t it?  Maybe there isn’t anything to worry about after all!

But if you look at the actual report (PDF) from the Deepwater Horizon Response site (which probably has best-case numbers, and of course doesn’t count dead animals that weren’t recovered), you see that while there were only three oiled mammal carcasses, there were 64 overall. Still not a huge number, but bigger than Jonah’s carefully-parsed figure by a factor of 21.  And mammals are the smallest of the categories encompassed by the report.  There are 504 dead sea turtles, and 3455 dead birds (but that’s nowhere near the number of birds killed by the Exxon Valdez spill, so that’s okay).  But no count of the number of dead fish, or shrimp, or oysters, much less damage to coral reefs and other deep-sea habitats, or even the number of Gulf residents and cleanup workers sickened by dispersants or oil fumes or tainted seafood.

But hey, we only found three dead mammals with oil on them, so that proves that this is just those crazy tree-hugging liberals getting hysterical again and trying to take away everyone’s jobs!  I’m surprised Jonah didn’t cite the lack of seal, otter and walrus casualties as proof that BP’s environmental response plan is working perfectly.

August 3rd, 2010 at 08:18pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Energy,Environment,Media,Republicans,Wankers

Productivity Is Awesome!

Who among us does not love increased productivity?

The shoddy economy is leaving many workers feeling overworked, underpaid — and yet relieved to be employed at all.

“Fewer workers are doing more and more,” said Brett Good, a district president with staffing firm Robert Half, which has surveyed workers on this topic. “You’ve got a lot of people that are working harder, making less money — and you’re getting to a point of frustration.”

Employers have cut millions of jobs since the recession began in December 2007, driven by a drop in business and a desire to shore up costs and boost profits. Although the cost-cutting has helped propel a spate of strong earnings in recent weeks, pleasing Wall Street, it has left those who are still employed struggling to pick up the slack.

Fifty-six percent of Americans have taken on extra duties at work over the past two years because of staff cuts, according to insurer MetLife’s Study of the American Dream, which was conducted in April and released last week.

Employees also are cramming more work into each day. Labor productivity has moved steadily higher over the past two years, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.


Most people who are enduring harder says at the office probably are relieved just to be working, said David Bowles, a consultant and co-author of the book “Employee Morale: Driving Performance in Challenging Times.”

“The average worker is probably quite happy to have a job,” Bowles said. “The overriding feeling is (that) whatever’s happening to them, they are not on the other side of that fence.”

“Productivity” sure does sound an awful lot like “fear-driven overwork” to me.  Hey, why hire more workers when you can squeeze your existing ones into doing whatever you want for less pay because they’re deathly afraid of being unemployed?

August 3rd, 2010 at 07:23am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Economy,Labor

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