In the USA, A Woman Earns 81.9 Cents for Every Dollar a Man Earns

Women earned 81.9 cents for every dollar a man earned in the second quarter of the year, 2015.

Labor Department data out this week showed the pay gap between men and women but little changed, or even taking a step back. Full-time women workers earned almost 84 cents for every dollar a man earned in the second quarter of last year,2014.

Overall, median weekly earnings of all full-time workers were up 2.7% from a year earlier to $801. Men got bigger paychecks, with wages and salaries going up 3.4% from a year earlier to $886. And for women, the increase was a more modest 1.4% to $726.

One item that hasn’t changed much recently is the difference in pay between genders. Women have been slowly closing the pay gap with men, and by some calculations may need another twenty years to achieve equal pay. The problem has caught the attention of the White House.

(Wall Street Journal)

AND SO TO VERSE:

Men get more than women; that is a fact of life.

It isn’t very decent, and causes lots of strife.

If women want more money, they ought to act like men —

crow just like the rooster and not lay like the hen.

hen-and-rooster-md

Coal Miner

America has lots of coal, but miners now are idle;

who can blame them if they feel a little suicidal?

A man bred to the mines is not so easily retrained,

and no one seems to care just how he is to be sustained.

Perhaps some of those millions that the PACs are mining can

be diverted to help out a poor coal-mining man . . .

from an article in the New York Times 

coal miner

The Subject of Bugs is Hard to Swallow

You’re out jogging on a golden summer morning.  Suddenly up  ahead you spot a cloud of gnats winking in the sunlight. So you shut your mouth tight, run through them, and hope that you didn’t inhale any.

Or perhaps it’s at a picnic, after you’ve finished off half a ham sandwich, that you notice the uneaten half has a few ants on it. You have a momentary twinge, as you think of the ingested ants now doing the backstroke in your stomach, but it passes. Then you reach for a soda to wash it all down, and notice a wasp struggling feebly inside the bottle. You hesitate to swallow any of it.

But, after all, how much harm could a few gnats or a drowned wasp do you?

According to a blog on KidsHealth.org, not much.

As long as you do not put a live stinging insect inside your mouth, such as a wasp or a fire ant, ingesting a few bugs will not cause any kind of problem.

The problems arise when something with a nasty sting, like a bee, or a noxious secretion, like a stinkbug, is accidentally introduced into the digestive system. This is especially so for people with allergies to insect stings and bites. Such people are in danger of an allergic reaction that causes rashes in the face and  swelling in the throat.

Pathologist Bobbi Pritt of the Mayo Clinic tells the Wall Street Journal that our stomachs can digest anthropods like ants, gnats and fleas without a hassle. But the common house fly might be a different story. They carry the Shigella microbe, which can cause severe diarrhea in humans.

So maybe that traditional children’s song about the old lady who swallowed a fly (“I guess she’ll die”) has a crumb of truth in it after all!

AND SO TO VERSE:

When I am in the great outdoors, inhaling that fresh air,

a flying beetle I might gulp — so I take special care.

I swathe my face in netting fine and slather on the Deet;

ensuring floating wildlife my esophagus won’t greet!

I never leave a Pepsi can wide open when outside;

you never know what bug has crawled into it and there died.

I understand that parasites can lodge on my pet’s fleas,

and so I only keep stuffed toys, avoiding all disease.

You may call me pixilated, persnickety or cracked;

but when it comes to scarfing bugs I have no grace or tact.

Me? Afraid of swallowing a harmless little bug? Nonsense!
Me? Afraid of swallowing a harmless little bug? Nonsense!

 

 

Donald Trump: I Am My Own Man, Unlike Bush, Walker or Clinton

(Based on an article in the Wall Street Journal)

OSKALOOSA, Iowa—Donald Trump claims there will be no ceiling on the amount of money he is willing to spend on his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination if his platform continues to resonate with the voters.

Speaking at a boisterous press conference following a pep rally in this city just east of Des Moines, The Donald also ripped into Republican rivals Jeb Bush and Scott Walker as well as Democrat Hillary Clinton with charges that they were in the pockets of wealthy donors.

Mr. Trump is a real-estate developer and something of a reality television personality, who has pretty much self-financed his campaign so far.

AND SO TO VERSE:

God bless you, Donald Trump, for making politics so fun.

Other windbags are too boring when they start to run.

Just keep on doing what you do, and if I get my druthers

you’ll be elected to clown alley at the Ringling Brothers!

donald trump

Jeb Bush: “I Challenge the Culture of the Capital!”

(Tallahassee, Florida. July 20, 2015) —

Jeb Bush has outlined a sweeping and detailed strategy to shrink the size of the federal government and to muzzle the influence of the lobbyists who batten off it, requiring a 10 percent reduction in federal workers, an immediate hiring freeze, a constitutional amendment requiring a balanced budget and a six-year cooling off period before members of Congress can work their wiles as lobbyists.

Conjuring up his record as a budget watchdog during his time as Florida’s governor, Mr. Bush promised to follow that approach during his first term as president if the 2016 election propels him to Washington — a city which he says is a model of unyielding dysfunction.

“The overspending, the overreaching, the arrogance, and the sheer incompetence in that city – these problems have been with us so long that they are sometimes accepted as facts of life,” Mr. Bush proclaimed in Tallahassee. “But a president should never accept them, and I will not.”

Mr. Bush also made a vow to “challenge the whole culture in our nation’s capital.”

(NYTimes.com)

AND NOW TO VERSE:

In Florida the mighty Jeb has thrown the gauntlet down;

calling Washington a sleazy and immoral town.

When he is in the White House he has promised to reform

the bureaucrats and all their parasitic lazy swarm.

I think he just might do it, if elected he could be.

But chances of that happening are quite a nullity.

Two Bushes in the White House we have had — and that’s enough.

I’d rather see Dick Cheney with the presidential cuff!

Jeb Bush

“Southpaw” Movie Reveals New Business Trend: Chinese Investors as Hollywood Moguls.

(Hollywood, CA. July 25. 2015)

from a story in the Wall Street Journal

The boxing movie “Southpaw” released this weekend has an unlikely silent partner: Chinese conglomerate Dalian Wanda Corp.

Wanda paid the nearly thirty million dollar production costs for the Jake Gyllenhaal film. It is being released by Weinstein Co., which is springing for nearly thirty-five million dollars of advertising expenses. The 2 organizations will split any profits.

“They were on the set and involved in production, postproduction, marketing, everything,” said Weinstein boss David Glasser. “They wanted to learn how we do what we do.”

In return, Weinstein is hoping Wanda will see that the movie gains favorable distribution rights in China, where the government grants licenses to only 34 foreign films per year.

“Southpaw” represents one of several gambits Chinese businesses have lately been using to tap into Hollywood moviemaking expertise.

4 recent heads of major Hollywood studios this past year have  started jobs among startups backed by Chinese speculators. These four new companies have gathered commitments worth more than six-hundred-and-sixty million dollars from the Chinese.

They are launching movies amid a tsunami of Chinese investment in the entertainment industry, Silicon Valley technology and other U.S. industries. The companies in China aren’t only looking to turn a profit, those involved in the moves say, but rather to gain know-how in areas where they are not currently considered as global leaders.

AND SO TO VERSE:

I’ve got a little flutter that the Chinese should enjoy;

as certain as the fact that green’s the color of bok choy.

Ripe wooden nutmegs are demanded by consumers now;

if Shanghai wants a piece of it, they’ll get a real cash cow.

I can also offer them the Brooklyn Bridge half-price,

or how about a process that turns gravel into rice?

Why invest in movies when so often they are flops;

I can get you bargain prices on our milkweed crops.

If you think this is a fraud I’m pulling off — you’re right.

It’s payback for their hacking of our data day and night!

 

(L-R) AMY MCADAMS and JAKE GYLLENHAAL star in SOUTHPAW
(L-R) AMY MCADAMS and JAKE GYLLENHAAL star in SOUTHPAW

The Search for Home

The ancient tortoise knows just what I know about abodes;

you carry them along as you go down so many roads.

The shell that we inhabit may be polished, may be dreck;

it really doesn’t matter as we finish up our trek.

Home is but a gossamer restraint to aging searcher,

on the way to mansions full of love and light and nurture.

wanderer

 

 

The Pope Will Visit Congress

(WASHINGTON July 20. 2015) —

When Pope Francis visits Capitol Hill this September, he will be the first pontiff to address a joint meeting of Congress, where more than 30 % of the members are nominally Catholic. The visit will fulfill a long-held dream of House Speaker John Boehner, who calls himself a “blue-collar Cahtolic”. He has extended invitations to popes for nearly 20 years, and Francis, after taking nearly a year to ponder, is the first to accept.

The pope’s visit comes with some built-in tensions for many of the Republicans in Congress, including professing Catholics. While the pontiff has made no changes in church doctrine yet, Francis has strongly claimed ideological ground opposite that of Mr. Boehner and his cronies. He has criticized the excesses of capitalism, calling it the “dung of the devil,” demanded action to stop global warming and happily supported the new nuclear accord with Iran.

(NYTimes.com)

AND SO TO VERSE:

When the Pope addresses Congress, he will need some good translators;

otherwise he’ll never reach our blusterous debaters.

It isn’t the Italian they can’t understand, you see;

but rather terms like “Justice”, “Faith”, and even “Honesty”.

Congress has no concept of such language; it’s all Greek,

since lobbyists have taught them all the words they need to speak.

pope