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View Diary: Compassionate conservatism? An open letter to Newt Gingrich from the child of a janitor (191 comments)

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  •  Ok, I agree... (0+ / 0-)

    but again, as nauseating as it makes me to defend Newt, I didn't see that as his premise.

    He specifically mentioned cleaning and moping the cafetiere or picking up trash as an example.  

    I didn't take his proposal as calling for replacing building maintenance supervisors,  with 5th graders, but simply allow them to do some of those menial tasks, to get that feeling of accomplishment (and paycheck) an honest hard days work brings.  

    And for the life of me, I really can't see anything wrong with that.  Am I missing something, does this fat turd have me fooled somehow?

    I totally agree with everything everyone's said, the value of work, including blue collar work, and the valuable life lessons and experience it brings... but I swear, I've read Newts opinion piece over and over, and to me, it comes off as he's saying the same thing. And that school children, especially at-risk kids, could benefit from such an experience.  

    •  I'm paraphrasing, but (0+ / 0-)

      I do believe that when making the comments about kids working as janitors, Newt mentioned the union status of school janitors.  With that comment, Newt certainly implied that the union janitors should be replaced with child labor.  Why else would he mention unions?

      Please keep in mind that 5th graders are 10-11 years old.  Do you really think it's okay for a kid that age to be in the labor force in any capacity?

      When cleaning and mopping the cafeteria, custodians are sometimes exposed to bodily fluids.  They have been highly trained for handling these situations, and have the safety gear and chemicals to safely deal with it.  You don't want little kids handling that!!

      I think this fat turd does have you fooled.

      Stand Up! Keep Fighting! Paul Wellstone

      by RuralLiberal on Fri Dec 30, 2011 at 12:13:02 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  maybe... (0+ / 0-)

        maybe its just his knee jerk, labor hating insides that forces him to bring up the union status of janitors, not sure, but I can't find where he says, or implies, the union janitors should be replaced.

        He does say;

        Dozens of poor students could have part-time, paying jobs for the $100,000 a year New York schools pay some custodians. For that amount, more than 30 children could work just two hours each school day and each take home $3,000 a year by the time they are 12 or 13 years old.

        Some of this work could be clerical; other tasks could be janitorial, such as cleaning the cafeteria, or emptying the trash, or vacuuming the classrooms.

        I don't see that as a call to replace the janitors... am I missing something?  

        I admit, I'm kinda new to politics, I don't pick up on all the inside, unspoken/doublespeak/newspeak that goes on in the political world.  I'm just a simple guy, that takes it as I see it, and I really don't see anything in this editorial I find disagreeable.  Am I just too stupid to see it, or do you have to read more into his actual words, knowing who Newt is and what he stands for, to get to the disagreeable parts?

        •  read it aloud to yourself (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          Dozens of poor students could have part-time, paying jobs for the $100,000 a year New York schools pay some custodians.

          He doesn't say keep both, the stated goal is to replace them with "dozens" of poor students.

          get it?

          again more appeals to the myth of evil unions--his real goal.

          •  I see... (0+ / 0-)

            I still dont' get it... I thought he was just saying, for the price of a 1 $100,000 janitor "dozens" of kids could have part time jobs.  As kinda a comparison, which was why he said;

            Wouldn't it be great if New York City schools served their students as well as they serve some of their custodians?

            and more specifically;

            Students--especially those from very poor families--would be better served if they had the opportunity to earn money part-time at school by doing some of the tasks custodians are now performing so expensively.


            Some of this work could be clerical; other tasks could be janitorial

            I mean, yeah, he sounds like an asshole, which is because he is one, but the actual things he said, on face value, I don't see anything to disagree with.

            Maybe that is what he's implying, replace the janitor, OK, I 100% disagree with that.  But as far as the value of janitorial work, what the original post was about, I don't see him saying anything of the things your responding too, it actually sounds like he agrees with you.  That even a janitor is a respectable work and career, and kids could learn something from doing some of that work.  I'm sorry, on face value, I have to agree with that.


            •  meh (0+ / 0-)

              see what you would like, in context, given what he is writing, and the assumption that a child could do that job, is condescending and insulting and disengenous--especially given the context and the author.

              why the investment in defending such a "compassionate" conservative?

              you also can't discount the point about lazy black and brown people as a frame for the narrative. he wouldn't have his own kids mopping floors--or do so himself.

    •  no (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      he explicitly said to replace the janitors who are over paid with children who make far less.

      that is the con--destroy unions, use race baiting to do it, and divide and conquer.

      old con game.

    •  Excuse me (0+ / 0-)

      My mother had me doing janitor work at age 12. She ran a cleaning business, and didn't want to hire employees for one of the big jobs she got at a small factory.

      I swept and mopped the production floor, and vacuumed the offices, for 4 years. I also cleaned offices, washed the glass entryway, emptied trash.

      My mother cleaned the bathrooms, and what offices that I didn't get to.

      My back is destroyed, and my doctors say that it's from doing such heavy work as a child. Did you know that the vacuums used for this work are usually in the form of backpacks? You wear the vacuum on your back. This damages adults.

      I spend a lot of my time dealing with back spasms, from doing janitor work and stable work (my father had a horse & carriage business). My knees are shot. I have arthritis in my hands, bursitis in my shoulders. Osteoarthritis in my hips.

      A child's body is NOT made to do this type of work.

      YOU push around an industrial mop for a few hours, and then tell me that it's work that a CHILD should do!

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      by LoreleiHI on Sat Dec 31, 2011 at 07:32:19 PM PST

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