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Show ALL Forums  > Politics  > The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?      Home login  
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 Montreal_Guy
Joined: 3/8/2004
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The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ? Page 1 of 4    (1, 2, 3, 4)
Well, I'd say that one area is something that most Americans never even think of.

They often complain about government and it's power, and protest vigorously to stop any possible change, but there is one place where every American is under far more control every single day of their adult lives.

Guess where ?

It's in their workplace.


Let me explain...



Americans have NO legal right to vacation time, a great exception to the rule in Western democracies.


In the last five decades the average U.S. family has gradually moved toward several incomes and no vacations. Per year, the average American works 5 weeks more than the average Briton, and 12 weeks more than a German. Meanwhile, our social safety net, job security, access to health care, pensions, quality of life, and vacation time have all declined.

A report by the Center for Economic and Policy Research says that among the 21 richest countries in the world, the U.S. ranks last in the legal right to paid vacation time. It is fatiguing just to look at their charts. "The United States is in a class of its own," the report says. "It is the no-vacation nation."

http://www.elliottwave.com/features/default.aspx?cat=mw*aid=3175*time=pm



Your boss can literally fire you "at will" , in many places.


At-will employment is a doctrine of American law that defines an employment relationship in which either party can break the relationship with no liability, provided there was no express contract for a definite term governing the employment relationship and that the employer does not belong to a collective bargaining group (i.e., has not recognized a union).

Under this legal doctrine:
“ any hiring is presumed to be "at will"; that is, the employer is free to discharge individuals "for good cause, or bad cause, or no cause at all," and the employee is equally free to quit, strike, or otherwise cease work. ”

Several exceptions to the doctrine exist, especially if unlawful discrimination is involved regarding the termination of an employee.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/At-will_employment



Good luck winning that case, btw.



DISPUTING DISMISSAL: What happens if you think you have been fired for a bad reason?

If you are a private-sector employee not under contract in the U.S., there are not many legal options to pursue unless you can prove a civil rights violation.

"Private-sector employees don't have rights" [i/]in the U.S., said Charles Craver, a professor specializing in employment law at George Washington Law School. An employee can be fired for any reason.

For any legal reason, that is. Workers cannot be dismissed for being whistleblowers, and federal law prohibits employers from dismissing or discriminating against workers because of their sex, national origin, religion, race, color, age or disabilities, for example.

You can also sue an employer for violating an employment contract, and there are certain state-by-state definitions of wrongful termination.

But even a dismissal that would be illegal -- because of one's sex, say -- can be hard to prove.

"The courts have cut back on wrongful termination cases," said Steve Paskoff, president of HR consultancy ELI and a former attorney with the government's Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. "You want to have 'smoking gun' facts."

http://www.businessweek.com/ap/financialnews/D9H854QO1.htm



Hope you have a lot of cash for the lawyers...

Your boss can make you sign a contract that binds you to doing things or not doing things, like drinking - even responsible social drinking.....if you really want that job.


Today, most Americans are more vulnerable to having their rights violated by their employers than the early Americans were to having their rights violated by the government. Yet because the Constitution does not limit their authority, private employers are free to violate the civil liberties of their employees. Nationwide, the American Civil Liberties union receives more complaints about abuses by employers than about abuses by the government:

* In California, a job applicant was denied a job because he refused to answer questions about his sex life on a "psychological test." At least million job applicants are required to take such tests every year.

* In Pennsylvania, an employee was fired because he pointed out serious safety defects in his employer's products At least 200,000 Americans are unjustly fired every year.

* In Indiana, an employee was fired because she smoked cigarettes in her own home. At least 6,000 American companies now attempt to regulate off-duty smoking and other private behavior.

The vast majority of American employees, of whom there are 100 million in all, are governed by a doctrine called "employment at will." This doctrine, a relic of 19th century anti-labor laws, gives employers the unfettered right to fire workers at any time, for any reason, whether grave or frivolous. Indeed, one can be fired for no reason at all. An estimated 200,000 employees at least, are unjustly fired in the United States each year.

It is the prevalence of the employment-at-will doctrine that empowers employers to impose unwarranted urine tests and intrusive "personality" and "integrity" tests on their employees. The power to fire at will permits employers to suppress their employees right to free speech.

Are there any laws that protect employees' rights?
There are federal and state laws that prohibit discrimination against individuals on the bases of race, religion, sex, national origin, age and disability. However, these laws require only that employees be treated equally. Employers are, therefore, free to do whatever they wish to their employees as long as they do so in a non-discriminatory manner.

A few other federal and state laws provide some protection against specific abuses, such as urine testing, polygraph testing and retaliation against whistle blowers. But these laws are extremely limited. The fundamental human rights of free expression, privacy and due process are still largely unprotected in the American workplace.

The Fourth Amendment, which protects the privacy of citizens from "unreasonable searches and seizures," gives some protection to public sector employees against their employers' prying eyes. In general, a government employer cannot search the person or belongings of an employee in the absence of any suspicion that the particular employee has done something illegal. With respect to urine testing for drugs, however, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that government employees can be required to take such tests, even if the employer does not suspect drug use, if the person's job is "safety sensitive," or involves carrying weapons or having access to classified information.

Private sector employees, on the other hand, have virtually no protection against even the most intrusive practices. In all but a handful of states, an employee can be required to submit to a urine test even where nothing about the employee's job performance or history suggests illegal drug use. If the employee refuses, he or she can be terminated without legal recourse. Employees can be subjected to "sniff" searches by dogs and searches of their lockers desks, purses, and even their cars if they park in the company parking lot. Both job applicants and employees can be required to answer extremely intrusive questions about their private lives and personal beliefs on "psychological," "personality" and "integrity" tests.

The advent of computer technology has made possible even more sophisticated forms of spying in the workplace. More and more employees are being subjected to electronic surveillance through video display terminals, observation by hidden cameras installed in work areas and locker rooms, and monitored telephone calls. With few exceptions, these increasingly widespread practices are legal.

Can employers discriminate on the basis of employees' lifestyles?
One of the emerging issues in the American workplace is the attempt by employers to control certain private habits and proclivities of their employees that have no relationship to job performance. Fat people are victims of lifestyle discrimination and a growing number of companies are refusing to hire smokers--even those who smoke only in their homes. A few employers exclude people with high cholesterol levels, or high blood pressure, and those who engage in such risky hobbies as scuba diving and hang gliding. Others impose lifestyle restrictions: One Oregon company bars workers who fail to participate in the company's exercise program from attending company picnics; a Pennsylvania company prohibits its managers from riding motorcycles!

http://www.lectlaw.com/files/emp08.htm




Did you know you could be fired for not removing a political sticker from your car — or even having a beer after work? Lewis Maltby says it's more than possible — it's happened. His new book, Can They Do That? explores rights in the workplace.

As he tells NPR's Ari Shapiro, "Freedom of speech is protected by the First Amendment — but only where the government is concerned.

"What most Americans generally don't know is that the Constitution doesn't apply to private corporations at all."

In terms of monitoring its employees, the list of things a corporation can't do is a short one — it's basically confined to eavesdropping on a personal oral conversation, Maltby said. "Anything else is open season."

And outside the workplace, personal blogs or social media pages on services like Twitter or Facebook offer no refuge.

Asked if workers can be fired for things they write on those sites, Maltby said, "Absolutely. Happens every day."

But not all snooping is meant to be malicious, Maltby said. For instance, a boss who suspects an employee might be about to quit, or is perhaps moonlighting for a competitor, might seek out the worker's personal blog.

The worker might not have been doing any of the things the boss had feared — instead, "your boss sees you blowing off steam about him, takes offense — and you get fired."

And workers have very little legal protection against being fired, said Maltby, who is also the president and founder of the National Workrights Institute.

"I've been getting calls from people for 20 years who've been abused in all sorts of ways," Maltby said. "When I tell them, 'Sorry, you don't have any legal rights,' they literally don't believe me," Maltby said.

Companies need the freedom to run their businesses the way they want — and fire people who are seen as doing a bad job. But, Maltby says, those decisions should be based on legitimate business rationale.

Asked how some practices can persist even though a majority of workers are against them, Maltby points to a key flaw in the job market: workers' need for stable income. The need to pay for things like a home mortgage or a child's education tends to complicate matters.

"It sounds nice in theory to say, 'Walk away, and look for another job,' " Maltby said. "But in practice, most people just can't take that risk. They just put up with it."

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=123024596



They can make it very difficult to unionize, a cardinal sin of the highest order.

Walmart ?

Guess the only place in the world ALL Walmart workers are unionized.

China.


In August 2006, Wal-Mart announced that it would allow workers at all of its Chinese stores to become members of trade unions, and that the company would work with the state-sanctioned All-China Federation of Trade unions (ACFTU) on representation for its 28,000 staff. However, the All-China Federation of Trade unions has been criticized because it is the only trade union in China and as a tool of the government, ACFTU has been seen as not acting in the best interest of its members (workers), bowing to the government pressure on industry growth and not defending workers' rights


Meanwhile, back at home.....


The 2004 report by U.S. Representative George Miller alleged that in ten percent of Wal-Mart's stores, nighttime employees were locked inside, holding them prisoner.

Wal-Mart has advised all stores to ensure the door keys are available on site at all times.


You can even profit of a dead employee, or at least you could at one time....


Until the mid-1990s, Wal-Mart took out corporate-owned life insurance policies on its employees including "low-level" employees such as janitors, cashiers, and stockers. This type of insurance is usually purchased to cover a company against financial loss when a high-ranking employee (i.e. management) dies, and is usually known as "Key Man Insurance." Critics derided Wal-Mart as buying what they called "Dead Peasants Insurance" or "Janitor Insurance." Critics, as well as the U.S. Internal Revenue Service, charge that the company was trying to profit from the deaths of its employees, and take advantage of the tax law which allowed it to deduct the premiums. The practice was stopped in the mid-1990s when the federal government closed the tax deduction and began to pursue Wal-Mart for back taxes.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Criticism_of_Wal-Mart


In America, they can pay you so low a salary that your family is on social assistance, one area where "more government" is a GREAT idea.


Because Wal-Mart employs part-time and relatively low paid workers, some workers may partially qualify for state welfare programs. This has led critics to claim that Wal-Mart increases the burden on taxpayer-funded services. A 2002 survey by the state of Georgia's subsidized healthcare system, PeachCare, found that Wal-Mart was the largest private employer of parents of children enrolled in its program; one quarter of the employees of Georgia Wal-Marts qualified to enroll their children in the federal subsidized healthcare system Medicaid. A 2004 study at the University of California, Berkeley charges that Wal-Mart's low wages and benefits are insufficient, and although decreasing the burden on the social safety net to some extent, California taxpayers still pay $86 million a year to Walmart employees.



Corporations have more power over Americans, so much so, that it would be a government's wet dream to match it.

Now, for those of us outside of America, these seem quite unbelievable, but they are all true.

Now the interesting thing here is this "fear" of government control, and seemingly zero awareness that your employer can literally have almost total control over you - and it's not something people protest about or even mention much.
 Outdoor2
Joined: 4/1/2006
Msg: 2
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The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/27/2010 10:39:54 PM
It is right to fear government control....once you realize that the corporations own the government.
 wisguyingb
Joined: 1/5/2008
Msg: 3
The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/28/2010 5:56:33 AM
Yet so many people from around the world come here to work. I have a few eastern European friends whom came here legally and love working and living here. They also fear the policies of Obama.

I'm also glad that America's workforce is not like many countries. I'm a overtime hog and like to get as much OT as I can. Heck I've volunteered to work many 40 and 50 day streches and have put in many 60 hour plus work weeks. A few years ago I even got a few 100 hour work weeks. I don't wanna be some fofo Frenchman who (I think) can only works 35 hours a week, has a boatload of vacation and really no material things to show for it. I should make mention that I currently get 3 weeks of paid vacation and a week of paid personals. And that is good enough for me.
 .dej
Joined: 11/6/2007
Msg: 4
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The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/28/2010 8:06:37 AM
I have plenty of rights in the workplace. Arguably I have the most rights there. Yes, we (in the US) live in a society where the individual has more freedom to make a contract with his employer than other countries.

The federal government legislation focuses more on what employers cannot do (employ children, work employees for unreasonably high hour time without compensation, compel employees to endanger themselves without safety precautions) than what they must do (mandating vacation time? why?).

Construing the lack of government controls telling employers they must give employees vacation time of so much a year or whatever is not some human right. And to say that we have the fewest rights in the workplace using these as examples begs the question: do you get mandatory vacation time guaranteed by the government in some other area? How can you make this comparison? It's nonsensical.

Things like smoking? Yes, if the government is going to compel me to pay for an employee's health care, I'm going to choose the healthy ones to work for me. Why would I knowingly shoulder costs for someone's poor lifestyle choices like smoking? This is 2010; we know that smoking is terrible for you. "Rights" are not the freedom to do whatever the hell you want at someone else's expense, and it's very troubling to see the attitude shift towards this.

Things like safety nets, pensions, etc... declining. Notice how that correlates to the government having more and more control over it? Want to retire? Save money and retire; don't look for momma fed to do it for you.

And I'm curious as to what metric you use that indicates a decreasing quality of life.




Your boss can literally fire you "at will" , in many places.

I've never really understand why people thought this was a bad thing other than "but I wanna make money!".

"I don't think you're worth the cost to me, so I don't want to keep investing money in your labor". That's a pretty logical approach, if you're running a business. If you make it so you're stuck with a liability if you hire someone forever until you have an excuse to get rid of them that some bimbo in Washington approves of, you're just going to be that much less likely to hire someone at all. And in such an environment, one bad reference will cause a business to deem you unworthy of taking such a huge risk, completely trashing your career prospects. France has proven this over and over.



They can make it very difficult to unionize, a cardinal sin of the highest order.

Collective price control: when a business does it, it's a trust and is illegal. When the exalted "worker" does it, it's labor rights. This party line only flies because of the faults of populism, despite it making NO economic sense. "Workers" outnumber businessmen when it comes to voting power.
 flyguy51
Joined: 8/11/2005
Msg: 5
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The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/28/2010 9:12:50 AM

Yet so many people from around the world come here to work.

Many people from around the world go to a lot of places around the world to work.

I have plenty of rights in the workplace. Arguably I have the most rights there.

That's a tough argument to make.

do you get mandatory vacation time guaranteed by the government in some other area?

Yes, you do.

If libertarians had their way, we wouldn't even have the work rules we have now. In their fantasy world, the economy is always bustling and growing, and people are free at any time to leave whichever job that treats them unfairly for another similar line of work at a utopic company.

I think that the defensive postures here kind of miss MG's overarching point: Americans complain way more about the villainous "big government" without acknowledging where their bread and butter is coming from, and what they sacrifice to get it-- knowingly or not.

MG, I think some people would express indignation if you mentioned how people get fired over matters of a PC nature...

I was just talking with an American who lives in Australia, and she was saying that their culture is more family time oriented, and ours is more work ethic oriented. Personally, I am not a big vacation taker-- I am definitely a product of my culture in that respect.
 HalftimeDad
Joined: 5/29/2005
Msg: 6
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The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/28/2010 10:18:35 AM
I'll relate something an old boss told me:

In the 80's he moved 30 miles south and set up shop in Washington State. His companies built ice rinks throughout the states and marinas around the world (they built the facilities for Olympics in Spain and Australia, for instance). But he is essentially Canadian, so he treated his employees the way Canadians expect to treat and be treated. He complained that when an employee was pregnant, he had to cover the whole maternity leave costs - there is no expectation of mat leave in US law. In Canada, the employee gets a year at home and she receives 60% of her salary. But it doesn't come out of the employer's pocket. In the US, he wanted to treat his employees reasonably and fairly and had to carry the weight himself.

For what it's worth, this extremely successful, entrepreneurial, smart businessman, who is also a great employer, moved back to Canada after Bush was re-elected.
 likemyrock
Joined: 10/21/2010
Msg: 7
The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/28/2010 11:31:49 AM

The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ? It's in their workplace.

And they compensate me for it.
That's the nature of capitalism.
You have something I want, I have something you want. If I want what you have, then I have to meet your demands. Free market capitalism means if I don't want to meet your demands then I can probably find someone that doesn't make them.
I don't have to work there.
I have the right to leave and find work somewhere else at any time. I can "at will" take off.
I can refuse that employer completely, so that employer has absolutely no control over me.


They can make it very difficult to unionize, a cardinal sin of the highest order.
Walmart ?
Guess the only place in the world ALL Walmart workers are unionized.

Have you researched the differences between unions in the U.S. and unions in places like China?
Such as their influence with employers and in the government?
Their rules and powers?
Or how the government influences the unions in order to control the businesses in some sort of, oh what do you call it, communistic ideal in the zones set up specifically for capitalism? For some strange reason communism is starting to take a hold in free market China.

Or do you simply assume unions in the U.S. and China are the same, do the same thing, have the same goals, have the same powers, not to mention the whole country is simply wide open to capitalistic expansion rather than specifically controlled?

Not to mention what kind of uproar would be in the U.S. if the federal government said "Okay Wal-mart, unionize or get out of this country."
Wal-Mart is a U.S. based company. The cost of not being in China is greater than the cost of allowing unions. It is not the same in the U.S.


The 2004 report by U.S. Representative George Miller alleged that in ten percent of Wal-Mart's stores, nighttime employees were locked inside, holding them prisoner.

Yeah. Because employees have absolutely no contact with the outside world once the unbreakable glass doors, deadly laser beam security system, guards with nightvision and shotguns, vicious attack dogs, and phone jamming equipment is turned on. Plus the employees had no conscious choice in the matter. Wal Mart sent out their black helicopters and vans, rounded up people and simply deposited them in the store saying "you work, or we no let you out!"


In America, they can pay you so low a salary that your family is on social assistance, one area where "more government" is a GREAT idea.

Wal-Mart used to offer really great health insurance. You know how? By teaching their employees how to apply for Medicare and Medicaid.
This behavior by Wal-Mart seems to be more of an argument to discontinue social assistance than increase it. If there were no alternative, you think people would demand more, or less to compensate for the need for security and safety? You think they would become closer knit and rely on each other and family more, value their education and an ability to actually use it because the alternative is so dire, or keep going in individualistic methods of keeping up with the joneses, car in every garage, everything is disposable, go after what you want rather than what you need, children are a magic species that turn into adults at 18 not just little adults that don't really know much but need to learn.


Corporations have more power over Americans, so much so, that it would be a government's wet dream to match it.

You know, it's funny, it's touted that the majority of jobs in the U.S. come from small businesses.
The "Corporation" has been in decline since the fifties.
Not because of government rules, regulations, taxes, and wages because of social lifestyle making it too expensive to do business here, but because they are so evil.
Yet they are so powerful they simply make victims out of all Americans.
And it's never Americans running these companies, is it. Corporations are soulless entities, not run by people at all. People that have to live as Americans, within families that interact as Americans.

The American citizen and the government are simply victims to big bad corporations.
Because corporations offer nothing good whatsoever. They have no social conscience whatsoever. Absolutely no investment in a community they are afraid to lose.
There are no rules governing them or driving them away.
Somehow they mystically came to power and acquired vast fortunes.
They must have done it via the black vans and helicopters that round people up and lock them as prisoners in Wal-Mart.


Now the interesting thing here is this "fear" of government control, and seemingly zero awareness that your employer can literally have almost total control over you - and it's not something people protest about or even mention much.

That's because companies offer compensation and contracts, you have a choice each time you step into a building.
The government is forced on you as you are born. You don't get to agree to anything, and you can't walk away, and you have to pay them. If you don't pay them, you get thrown into a ,what, wal mart made out of iron bars via black vans and helicopters and people with guns.

So where is there more freedom? Having the ability to choose between employers, being able to choose which one you will sacrifice your rights to get what you want from them, and the ability to leave at any time?
Or not having the ability to choose, simply born into a system that you have to adhere to all your life, with minimum say, no real alternative, and you have to pay for the privilege of slowly losing all your choices, and oh yeah it's for your own good and we already paid for it based on your future earnings, so we are going to need even more from you this year, and if you don't pay you are going to wal-mart, I mean prison.

Isn't the government also trying to get you to buy insurance? Or face penalties?
Wal-Mart does that a lot. "Hey, you have to buy this 200 pack roll of toilet paper. If you don't we are sending an IRS agent to your house, we are going to garnish your wages, and other things that aren't clear in the bill."

A million people band together and protest a corporation, boycott, and stop doing business with it...you think that would change it's practices? What about drive it away?
Would the people then have a greater choice in who comes in?
Oh wait, tons of people and communities protested against things like mosques and Wal-Marts from coming there...who was it again that forced what a community didn't want into said community? Sears? Oh wait, no, government.
How about a million people marching on and protesting to Washington...Hmmm, did that stop an invasion?
Yeah, it's those evil corporations that are the bad guys, should be feared, and their power limited.
 WalksOnWater2
Joined: 5/19/2009
Msg: 8
The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/28/2010 2:22:42 PM
Last time I was in Europe and checking out the ads to see what jobs have available, I read:


<div class="quote"> " Secretary needed, age 23-28, presentable , (means pretty for you Americans), with pleasant personality. Salary negotiable. Call xxx-xxxx. "
Dozens of these ads.

(For your information, they can also clarify, that they don't want any blacks, Albanians, redheads, nobody over 35, christians only, or without any/or specific disability etc.
LEGALLY

So nothing has changed for the last 20 years there.

Don't talk about our rights, until you live in places that they don't have what we have.

The average Joe has 1 month vacation, but the money he makes is 1/2 or less of what a comparable worker makes here. Because they can not fire you without severance compensation after 6 months of work there, they fire you before you have worked for six months.
There are LOTS of differences in worker's rights between America and other countries.

But WE do have it a lot better than THEM, all things considered.

I don't see many Americans immigrating to other countries, because they find the situation insufferable, do you?

 .dej
Joined: 11/6/2007
Msg: 9
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The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/28/2010 2:23:48 PM
That's a tough argument to make.

How? I have all the rights I have in most any other place (essentially the entire bill of rights, perhaps with the exception of going armed, depending on employer policy, and with the exception of freedom of speech if my job includes contact with classified material, but personally I do not so that's intact), plus a few extra protections such as workman's compensation if I get injured and assurances of safety.



do you get mandatory vacation time guaranteed by the government in some other area?


Yes, you do.

What other area does the government require that I take vacation?


If libertarians had their way, we wouldn't even have the work rules we have now.

Perhaps, perhaps not. Perhaps they wouldn't be as codified, but endangering an employee would be a crime as it is if you put anyone's life in danger. Perhaps there wouldn't be overtime exceptions? True. Which would mean people wouldn't be arbitrarily limited in the hours they worked if they needed money.
 Montreal_Guy
Joined: 3/8/2004
Msg: 10
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The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/28/2010 2:38:28 PM

Not because of government rules, regulations, taxes, and wages because of social lifestyle making it too expensive to do business here, but because they are so evil.


Yet those very same companies do business here in Canada , and many other "socialist" countries, and make a tidy profit doing it.

No one notices the irony.

Even better, they get Americans, like you, to pay towards helping them out - with "wealthfare".


And they compensate me for it.
That's the nature of capitalism.
You have something I want, I have something you want. If I want what you have, then I have to meet your demands. Free market capitalism means if I don't want to meet your demands then I can probably find someone that doesn't make them.
I don't have to work there.
I have the right to leave and find work somewhere else at any time. I can "at will" take off.
I can refuse that employer completely, so that employer has absolutely no control over me.


Not quite as easy as it sounds, for most people in the workplace. It's especially ironic given the economic climate today.

My boss can't fire me for having a political sticker on my car, and yet I live in a society where (compared to the USA) there's a distinctly different model of what "free speech" is defined as.

Fly was correct in seeing the aim of the post, which was to point out just how much control your boss holds over you, as compared to that phantom menace from government many American's fear.


So where is there more freedom? Having the ability to choose between employers, being able to choose which one you will sacrifice your rights to get what you want from them, and the ability to leave at any time?


I'm free to leave my job at any time, as are most people without specific contracts stating otherwise. I can choose any employer I want that will hire me. That's pretty universal, actually, in Western democracies.

America isn't special in that regard.

As a Canadian, I have a minimum two weeks paid vacation time a year, as well as two additional ones from my company (after thirteen years of service).

If I was a new parent, could get a total of 35 weeks of parental leave (which could be shared and split with the mother), paid for by unemployment insurance.

A pregnant woman can leave work eight weeks before the expected birth date, and get fifteen weeks total maternity leave.

http://www.servicecanada.gc.ca/eng/ei/types/special.shtml#Parental3

What's important to note here is that these things like these help make better families, and better societies.

If a society doesn't value children and families, (except in name only) are we surprised when that same society has problems ?
 flyguy51
Joined: 8/11/2005
Msg: 11
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The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/28/2010 3:21:53 PM

How? I have all the rights I have in most any other place (essentially the entire bill of rights, perhaps with the exception of going armed, depending on employer policy, and with the exception of freedom of speech if my job includes contact with classified material), plus a few extra protections such as workman's compensation if I get injured and assurances of safety.

I don't think you have thought your claim through. In most cases of employment, you cannot refrain from bathing for long periods, have dreadlocks, tons of tattoos and piercings, etc. You must "be presentable." Classified material? Ha-- not even. Try going around the workplace addressing females as "hoes" or "b!tches." Try dropping the F-bomb a lot... or the "n" word. Try wearing Hawaiian shirts and shorts in an office everyday. I hope you get the idea... you can't swing a dead cat around Fox News without hearing about Juan Williams' getting fired.

Social security and Medicaid covers poor, disabled people who aren't working, so worker's comp isn't an "extra right."

Anyway, this particular discussion is moot. One doesn't expect or deserve more rights in the workplace. That's why your claim is so very odd-- and off.

What other area does the government require that I take vacation?

In the US, if you work for the government (in a "nonessential capacity"), and it's a national holiday, your office will be closed. In Australia, for example, one cannot let their vacation time accrue past a certain point.

Which would mean people wouldn't be arbitrarily limited in the hours they worked if they needed money.

If you see that as an intrusive disadvantage, we will just have to disagree. At one time, I rather enjoyed getting paid 1.5 for working overtime-- which is more money, not less. Perhaps you also lament that parents cannot legally employ, or have their young kids employed for little or no pay. Perhaps to you that is an abridgement of your personal liberties.

MG's MAIN point, as I see it, is that your employer determines your quality of life and limits your liberties far more than the government does directly, yet government is seen by many as the enemy of liberty.
 flyguy51
Joined: 8/11/2005
Msg: 12
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History
The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/28/2010 3:29:26 PM

The government is forced on you as you are born. You don't get to agree to anything, and you can't walk away, and you have to pay them. If you don't pay them, you get thrown into a ,what, wal mart made out of iron bars via black vans and helicopters and people with guns.

I really have no experience using this phrase myself, but isn't this where the ever popular "Love it or leave it" option comes in? I may be using it incorrectly because the president isn't a Republican at this time.
 Montreal_Guy
Joined: 3/8/2004
Msg: 13
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The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/28/2010 6:17:17 PM

MG's MAIN point, as I see it, is that your employer determines your quality of life and limits your liberties far more than the government does directly, yet government is seen by many as the enemy of liberty.


That's exactly it, backed up with citations to prove it.

As I pointed out with one of those citations, your Constitutional rights end when you punch in - if your boss wants to do that.


Did you know you could be fired for not removing a political sticker from your car — or even having a beer after work? Lewis Maltby says it's more than possible — it's happened. His new book, Can They Do That? explores rights in the workplace.

As he tells NPR's Ari Shapiro, "Freedom of speech is protected by the First Amendment — but only where the government is concerned.

"What most Americans generally don't know is that the Constitution doesn't apply to private corporations at all."In terms of monitoring its employees, the list of things a corporation can't do is a short one — it's basically confined to eavesdropping on a personal oral conversation, Maltby said. "Anything else is open season."




Lewis L. Maltby, President

A nationally recognized expert and prolific writer on human rights in the workplace, Maltby is the founder
and president of the Institute. As a senior private sector executive, Maltby learned that human rights and
corporate efficiency are not only compatible, but mutually reinforcing. He left the corporate world in 1988
and founded the National Workplace Rights Office of the American Civil Liberties Union. In 2000, Maltby
and his ACLU staff realized the need for an independent organization to fight for human rights on the job
and created the National Workrights Institute.

http://www.workrights.org/about/lewis.html




Do not think you're protected by the First Amendment.

You can't help but sympathize with an employer who's trying to improve the bottom line, but allowing employers to take over everyone's private life to improve the bottom line is just not legitimate.

-Lewis Maltby




Lewis Maltby
Lewis Maltby, an expert in employment law, is president and founder of the National Workrights Institute. The former head of the ACLU's national workplace rights office, he is quoted frequently in the media.

Maltby, president and founder of the National Workrights Institute, provides chilling insight into personal rights in the workplace and existing laws, which, with rare exception, side with employers. Such liberties as freedom of speech, guaranteed by the Bill of Rights, protect us only from governmental intrusions and do nothing to safeguard us from private enterprise. Maltby relays shocking stories of employer abuses, including tracking employees through cell phone GPS locators, placing hidden cameras in restrooms, and asking potential employees for details on everything from religious beliefs to sex lives. A staggering 20% of employers now require employees to agree before being hired not to go to court if the corporation violates their legal rights. Maltby shows employees how to protect themselves as much as possible under the existing laws and urges them to fight for bringing the Bill of Rights to apply to the private sector.

A group of women at a storage company with no legal recourse after discovering a hidden camera installed by their manager in the women's restroom

A longtime employee dismissed for having a beer after work, because his boss believed drinking was a sin


<div class='quote'>http://ebookstore.sony.com/ebook/lewis-maltby/can-they-do-that/_/R-400000000000000187459


Talk about Big Brother ?

That's from someone with the legal background to say it, not some tin foil wearing psycho.

If one looks at the real quality of life one has, it's far more dependant on your boss than anyone you elect to any office.

Anyone that speaks out about it is seen as attacking something basic and "normal", as we've just seen here. If one did the same thing on a political thread, on an "anti-government" rant, they'd generally be applauded by many.

That's what's so fascinating to me. It's partly explainable by American historical cultural memes, and corporate media control over perspective.
 .dej
Joined: 11/6/2007
Msg: 14
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The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/28/2010 8:22:49 PM
I don't think you have thought your claim through. In most cases of employment, you cannot refrain from bathing for long periods, have dreadlocks, tons of tattoos and piercings, etc. You must "be presentable." Classified material? Ha-- not even. Try going around the workplace addressing females as "hoes" or "b!tches." Try dropping the F-bomb a lot... or the "n" word. Try wearing Hawaiian shirts and shorts in an office everyday. I hope you get the idea... you can't swing a dead cat around Fox News without hearing about Juan Williams' getting fired.

You can do all of these things. However, you may not be allowed to come back onto somebody's private property.

The problem here seems to be a fundamental misunderstanding (or new definition) of what a "right" is. The right to the freedom of speech does not mean the right to force your speech on someone else on their property and they are forced to just take it.

You can say whatever you want. You just might have to find a new place to say it.


In the US, if you work for the government (in a "nonessential capacity"), and it's a national holiday, your office will be closed. In Australia, for example, one cannot let their vacation time accrue past a certain point.

So when I said is there some other place that the government requires vacation other than the workplace, your answer is yes, in the workplace. Okay.

We might not be on the same page.


If you see that as an intrusive disadvantage, we will just have to disagree. At one time, I rather enjoyed getting paid 1.5 for working overtime-- which is more money, not less.

No, because many employers will cap you out at the overtime marker and not let you work more hours.


MG's MAIN point, as I see it, is that your employer determines your quality of life and limits your liberties far more than the government does directly, yet government is seen by many as the enemy of liberty.

Oh no. My employer enhances my quality of life by giving me money. In return I do stuff for him.
 flyguy51
Joined: 8/11/2005
Msg: 15
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The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/29/2010 8:24:25 AM

The right to the freedom of speech does not mean the right to force your speech on someone else on their property and they are forced to just take it.

Correct-- in other words, your free speech rights do not extend to the workplace-- which really makes me wonder why you claimed you have more rights IN the workplace than out. (???)

We might not be on the same page.

Indeed, we are not. Now that I know what you were NOT talking about, I am really left wondering what in the world you WERE talking about. (???)

No, because many employers will cap you out at the overtime marker and not let you work more hours.

I guess those employers make up for the loss by awarding little vacation time. That, and/or they employ more workers.

Nobody is stopping you from getting a second job, if that's what you need. Better that option be yours than your employer's. That is progress-- I realize you disagree.

My employer enhances my quality of life by giving me money. In return I do stuff for him.

You have it backwards, unless you get paid in advance all the time. You do stuff for your employer, and in return he pays you money. (He doesn't really "give" it to you) And you shouldn't confuse financial security with liberty-- BIG mistake. The government protects your liberties; your employer does not.

Philosophically speaking, you and your employer affect eachother and need eachother. Can you find the parallel with you and the government? (I keep trying to anchor the larger point)
 flyguy51
Joined: 8/11/2005
Msg: 16
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The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/29/2010 9:05:29 AM
Actually, I shouldn't say that your free speech rights do not extend to the workplace. That is not precisely true-- you won't be arrested merely for dropping the "n" word there; however, you may very well lose your job. Again, government protects your rights, not your employer.
 CallmeKen
Joined: 9/4/2009
Msg: 17
The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/29/2010 3:30:44 PM

Americans have NO legal right to vacation time

Last time I checked, Montreal was Canadian. If you don't like the way Americans do business, simply don't do business with Americans. Problem solved.

With banks robosigning and pushing through eviction and foreclosure notices, do you really want to leave your home for a vacation? You might come back to find someone else living there .
 hard starboard
Joined: 6/21/2008
Msg: 18
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History
The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/29/2010 6:04:44 PM

The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?...

It's in their workplace.


Well, at least my employer pays me when they take my rights away.
The government wants to charge me for doing the same thing.

 OMG!WTF!
Joined: 12/3/2007
Msg: 19
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The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/29/2010 6:30:53 PM

Yet those very same companies do business here in Canada , and many other "socialist" countries, and make a tidy profit doing it.


Ever wonder why stuff costs more in Canada than the States? 16% more on average? Ever wonder why union employed electricians get paid less than half of what privately employed electricians get? And less than a quarter of what self employed electricans get? One way or another, you pay for your paid vacation....and in Canada you pay for everyone else's too.

There are benefits and draw backs to both employment environments. Lots of major employers in Canada are turning more and more to hiring contractors when possible which actually provides less "rights" to workers than those lousy Americans. It makes it just as easy to get rid of unwanted personnel as in the States. There is far less tax to be paid, no employment insurance to pay, and no vacation requirements. Job security is basically non existant or at best, up to your own skills and assets. Who do you think generates a better product? Hint, not the union guy.


What's important to note here is that these things like these help make better families, and better societies.

If a society doesn't value children and families, (except in name only) are we surprised when that same society has problems ?


Here's the problem for the average employed Canadian. You're actually being completely oppresssed and you don't even know it. You're being coddled along, golden paycheck dangling mercilessly in front of your nose. You're given just enough to keep you interested and keep you...well....safe. You're happy. And that's great. It may be an illusion of safety. But there's something to be said even for that. And you don't even actually have to save money to have a kid. You can just have one, and still get paid for a year. Awesome. So what's your motivation to create actual wealth for yourself and your family? No matter how dilligent you are, or how much government funded swag you pick up along the way, your average paycheck is not going to do it. So what are you going to do to get ahead if you don't know you're behind?
 motown cowgirl
Joined: 6/30/2010
Msg: 20
The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/30/2010 5:47:59 AM
is that your employer determines your quality of life and limits your liberties far more than the government does directly, yet government is seen by many as the enemy of liberty.


what's all this then, another call for socialist revolution? workers' rights? we all know how that turned out.


while there is an element of truth in the quoted statement, it is way, waaay overblown.
here's just one example. "Americans have no legal right to a vacation". what of it?!? what makes anyone think they should even have a "right" to a vacation? meanwhile, where are all the americans crying and tearing their shirts because they never get a vacation? it just doesn't happen. your entire litany of cited complants are exceptions, not rules. "One company bars managers from riding motorcycles to work." wowww. that's cruel & inhuman fer sure. rise up my people, and cast off the shackles of the oppressor!!! [:eyeroll:] if bubba doesn't like it enough that it creates heartburn, he can go be a manager somewhere else. did you ever stop to think that maybe the company's travel accident policy doesn't cover managers on motorcycles and that's why they have the rule?

sucky economy aside, there are lots and lots of market forces in the american workplace that apparently you never considered or are completely unaware of. who would agree to work for a company that says you can never take a vacation? even if you could find a company stupid enough to have such an asinine rule, the only people who would work there are the people nobody else would hire. just a matter of time before the company falls under its own weight.



Your boss can literally fire you "at will" , in many places.


so what? do you actually think that people have some magical right to a job? then where is my right as an employer to fire your ass for stealing from me, failing to perform, and otherwise bringing my business, the one that i built from the ground up, to the brink of freaking failure? or are you actually suggesting that bosses stand around firing employees at the drop of a hat because they didn't get laid last night? "oh my dick hurts. you're fired!" again, it just doesn't happen. you should be sentenced to three weeks of managing people and actually running a business. you will quickly change your whiny tune, i guarantee.
:laugh:
 flyguy51
Joined: 8/11/2005
Msg: 21
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The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/30/2010 1:39:50 PM

what's all this then, another call for socialist revolution? workers' rights? we all know how that turned out.

No, no call for a socialist revolution on my part-- just a call for greater perspective and to "restore sanity." By way of comparison, how have libertarian revolutions worked out?

You bring up good points, but you completely neglect the second half of the equation here: that many see government as the enemy of liberty, all the while defending the employer's prerogative to do whatever they want as long as they pay their employees competitively. What is really ironic is that .dej cites government mandated programs-- worker's comp and safe working conditions-- as evidence of greater "rights" in the workplace. However, government mandated rules like the 40 hour work week are looked upon as evidence of government overreach.

The point is not really how oppressive the US workplace is, but how relatively unoppressive our government is. The main example of the lack of perspective in this are the Tea Partiers-- they see taxation, government spending, and healthcare reform as elements of an oppressive government. They are the real whiners here. Since you mention not being entitled to a job, they also blame the government for being unemployed or underemployed. Of course, so do others, but they don't view government as the archvillain. The Tea Party is not even consistent when it comes to matters of liberty-- for example: gay marriage, gays in the military, and abortion rights. Nor are they consistent when it comes to giving up Social Security, Medicare, and government pensions.

To bring perspective into it, we in the US are among the least taxed. While people protest government spending here, riots break out in Greece over austerity cuts-- they wouldn't be so well received here, either. What's a government to do? OMGWTF! brings up probably the best single point in this thread: the required benefits in the workplace that more socialistic countries have DO generally raise consumer costs. However, that does not seem to negate their quality of life, standard of living, and general contentment.
 Montreal_Guy
Joined: 3/8/2004
Msg: 22
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The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/30/2010 3:38:43 PM

you should be sentenced to three weeks of managing people and actually running a business. you will quickly change your whiny tune, i guarantee.


Been there, done that.

I was a director of production, and am currently the VP of my union local.

I'm also one of the most productive employees, based on stats, always in first or second spot.

Your eight hour day, forty hour week, and child labour laws, were the result of unions and other "socialists".


The eight-hour day movement or 40-hour week movement, also known as the short-time movement, had its origins in the Industrial Revolution in Britain, where industrial production in large factories transformed working life and imposed long hours and poor working conditions. With working conditions unregulated, the health, welfare and morale of working people suffered. The use of child labour was common. The working day could range from 10 to 16 hours for six days a week.

Robert Owen had raised the demand for a ten-hour day in 1810, and instituted it in his socialist enterprise at New Lanark. By 1817 he had formulated the goal of the eight-hour day and coined the slogan Eight hours labour, Eight hours recreation, Eight hours rest. Women and children in England were granted the ten-hour day in 1847. French workers won the 12-hour day after the February revolution of 1848. A shorter working day and improved working conditions were part of the general protests and agitation for Chartist reforms and the early organization of trade unions

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eight-hour_day



Almost 20 percent of employers today require all employees to agree in advance not to go to court if the company violates their legal rights, and to take their dispute to a private arbitration system selected (and sometimes run) by the employer..If you don't agree, you don't get the job. Some of these programs are fair. But others are kangaroo courts in which employers may handpick the arbitrators and deny employees the right to have a lawyer, or whose rules don't require the arbitrator to follow the law.

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=123024596


Even if what they are doing is illegal, you agree that it's not a legal issue - and use a system that may let them hold all the cards...


.... you completely neglect the second half of the equation here: that many see government as the enemy of liberty, all the while defending the employer's prerogative to do whatever they want as long as they pay their employees competitively


That's the focus point here, really.

The same American that wants to have a safe flight in a plane, but who thinks those new security cameras or physical pat downs are highly intrusive might be someone who has to urinate into a cup (in front of a witness, no less) to keep their job.


If you survive this gauntlet, the drug test is waiting for you. No sensible employer wants to hire a drug abuser, but drug tests can't tell if someone is an abuser, only that someone used drugs at some point in the past. If you've ever smoked marijuana at a party, you could be in for trouble. When your body metabolizes something you ingest, the chemicals it creates (called metabolites) stay in your body for days, or even weeks.Even if you've never touched drugs, you're not safe. Some employers use cheap tests that mistake Advil, Sudafed, NyQuil, and other over-the-counter medications for illegal drugs. Even if proper testing is used, labs often make mistakes. A study by the Centers for Disease Control found that 37 percent of drug test results were wrong; the samples labeled positive were actually clean. And don't count on having any privacy for the test; some employers have "urination monitors" watch everyone while they fill the cup to make sure nobody is cheating

- ibid


Now there may be no actual reason for such a test, as one might have for someone driving or operating a vehicle - or someone with an admitted problem that's being monitored.

You may not have even ingested the substance in question at all, it could be "second hand smoke" from a concert or party.

It might even be a false positive, because the company used the cheap test to save money.

Guess what ? No more job, and a work record that indicates illegal drug use.

Or for drinking a beer socially.


Best Lock Company in Indiana fires workers for social drinking because its president believes drinking alcohol is a sin.
- ibid


He does know they served wine at the Last Supper, I presume?

And the Eucharist in the Catholic Church ?

Let's hope your boss isn't some whacked out Calvinist.


In 1989, Daniel Winn, an employee at the Best Lock Corporation in Indiana, admitted to his superiors that several years earlier he had a few drinks in a bar with friends. Mr. Winn was promptly fired on the basis of Best Lock's policy that its employees cannot drink alcohol under any circumstances.

The early Americans adopted the Bill of Rights to limit the government's involvement in their lives and modern Americans demonstrate the same unwillingness to tolerate intrusion whether by government or by employer. According to a 1990 poll by the National Consumers League, 81% of Americans believe that an employer has no right to refuse to hire an overweight person. 76% believe employers have no right to refuse to hire a smoker. 73% believe employers have no right to require an employee or applicant to change their diet.

http://www.workrights.org/issue_lifestyle/ld_legislative_brief.html


Now contrast those types of numbers with this "OK, go ahead and tread on me" acceptance of this level of control over your life by your boss.
 WalksOnWater2
Joined: 5/19/2009
Msg: 23
The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/31/2010 5:26:55 AM

Almost 20 percent of employers today require all employees to agree in advance not to go to court if the company violates their legal rights, and to take their dispute to a private arbitration system selected (and sometimes run) by the employer..If you don't agree, you don't get the job. Some of these programs are fair. But others are kangaroo courts in which employers may handpick the arbitrators and deny employees the right to have a lawyer, or whose rules don't require the arbitrator to follow the law.

Arbitration was brought about because of the lawsuit-happy mentality of the American society and the entitlement-heavy attitude of employees encouraged by the unions and the politicos. Law suits can break a company, and the employee agrees to take his grievances to the arbitration FIRST, which does not preclude that he can not go to court if the issues are not resolved by arbitration.

Regarding the vacations and family time off, what a company offers to the employees is part of the incentive to work for them instead of another company.

The company I work for, offers 21 days plus 5 holidays paid vacation plus 5 more days for every 5 years of service. 24 weeks to expectant mothers, to take before or after birth, and a bunch of other stuff. Other companies offer more, others less. If you don't think it is enough, you can hold off for a better deal.
My friend gets 2 weeks, and that's it. Her choice.

Other companies have shared shifts, work from home options , buy time off, you name it.
They do it to attract employees, and retain talent, and because they can. It is part of the way a capitalist economy works.

As for the alcohol ban, the Brewing companies here served beer to the workers (including the delivery drivers) at lunch time every day until 1994. Then boozing at work became politically incorrect, and they dropped the tradition. It was not the employer, it was the government that messed this one up.


Best Lock Company in Indiana fires workers for social drinking because its president believes drinking alcohol is a sin.

This president has my complete disapproval!


 OMG!WTF!
Joined: 12/3/2007
Msg: 24
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The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/31/2010 10:27:06 AM

Now there may be no actual reason for such a test, as one might have for someone driving or operating a vehicle - or someone with an admitted problem that's being monitored.

You may not have even ingested the substance in question at all, it could be "second hand smoke" from a concert or party.

It might even be a false positive, because the company used the cheap test to save money.

Guess what ? No more job, and a work record that indicates illegal drug use.


Lots and lots of Canadian companies have mandatory drug testing. It usually takes three positive tests and some ei funded rehab to get rid of someone, but this is reality. If the company used expensive tests, would that be okay?


Now the interesting thing here is this "fear" of government control, and seemingly zero awareness that your employer can literally have almost total control over you - and it's not something people protest about or even mention much.


People don't really protest EI over funding in Canada either. All that money you pay in the hopes of taking free welding classes someday, or sick leave, or simply because you got laid off, has gone to general revenue. It's a tax. If the economy were to actually collapse, it would not be there to fund correlating benefits. And it's simply more money being taken out of an economy which in itself is theoretically harmful. So when you say the government has very little control over your work environment I think you're totally wrong. They have a similar problem in the States, but it's because of underfunding, not excessive tax. Opposite ends of an equally negative spectrum.


If I was a new parent, could get a total of 35 weeks of parental leave (which could be shared and split with the mother), paid for by unemployment insurance.

A pregnant woman can leave work eight weeks before the expected birth date, and get fifteen weeks total maternity leave.

http://www.servicecanada.gc.ca/eng/ei/types/special.shtml#Parental3


For several billion in excess ei funding we should all get paid sabbaticals.
 .dej
Joined: 11/6/2007
Msg: 25
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The one place in America where Americans have almost zero rights is ?
Posted: 10/31/2010 3:13:49 PM


The right to the freedom of speech does not mean the right to force your speech on someone else on their property and they are forced to just take it.


Correct-- in other words, your free speech rights do not extend to the workplace-- which really makes me wonder why you claimed you have more rights IN the workplace than out. (???)


They do extend to the workplace. I cannot be jailed for my speech -- even in the workplace.

Your concept of freedom of speech is not accurate. Your freedom of speech follows you around. This doesn't guarantee that there will be no personal repercussions for your speech. But you are free from the government legislating that you cannot say it.

Your concept of "freedom of speech" doesn't extend anywhere but inside your own home, with the phones cut off, windows closed, and no internet. You're free to slander someone all you want, but they're free to hold you liable for it. You can go out in public and call your employer a babykiller who makes terrible products and hates freedom. But he probably won't continue welcoming you onto his property.


Nobody is stopping you from getting a second job, if that's what you need. Better that option be yours than your employer's. That is progress-- I realize you disagree.

I have little problem with overtime, I was mostly just pointing out the other side of the argument. Though second jobs are a pain in the ass to hold (coming from someone with two regular jobs and a contracting job -- total 3), and I'd prefer to have the ability to combine those hours into one job (a hypothetical argument for me at this point, because I'm old enough now that I don't have to work 70 hours a week anymore to make a paycheck).


You have it backwards, unless you get paid in advance all the time. You do stuff for your employer, and in return he pays you money. (He doesn't really "give" it to you) And you shouldn't confuse financial security with liberty-- BIG mistake.

There really isn't a backwards or forwards. It's a mutual relationship. Plenty of work gets done on bid/contract basis (here's the money, here's the deliverable I want).


The government protects your liberties; your employer does not.

I'm not even sure you can say this with a straight face and mean it.


Philosophically speaking, you and your employer affect each other and need each other. Can you find the parallel with you and the government? (I keep trying to anchor the larger point)

There shouldn't be one. If the government were doing its job right, I shouldn't know it's even there. If I'm doing my job right, the existence of my employer should be a pretty obvious part of my everyday life.


Now the interesting thing here is this "fear" of government control, and seemingly zero awareness that your employer can literally have almost total control over you - and it's not something people protest about or even mention much.

When I have the option to "quit" my government, then I'll return to this sentence and consider it on the same plane.
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