I believe he’s gonna work me into the ground

Gnoot has a post up about his proposal to prepare kids from poor families for the low paying, menial jobs they will often be forced to take after leaving school by giving them low paying, menial jobs while they are at school.

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

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.

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. These are similar to the chores many parents require their kids to do at home, and it would allow 12- and 13- year olds to make money they desperately need. Giving children the opportunity to earn money would help teach work habits, and letting them do so in their schools would build a stronger commitment to that community.

Here’s the thing, Gnoot, you crap-filled, sociopathic blowhard.

I may be a fictional, sweary old lady who knows two fifths of fuck-all about poverty and the challenges facing inner city kids, or about how we could improve their financial position while increasing their self esteem and encouraging them to learn.

However, I’d be willing to bet quite a lot of money that the answer is not making them stay back after school to clean up other students’ shit for six bucks an hour.



We are the 99%.

Well, you are anyway, for the most part. I, on the other hand, am stonkers with cash, positively rolling in it.

My father was the second son of the Baron Capel of Tewkesbury, although there were always rumors that there was something a little, shall we say, Edwardian about his genetics, particularly given that the old Baron had, ten years before my father’s birth, had both testicles shot off by Ayub Khan in the Second Anglo-Afghan War. Let’s just say that Daddy could do an impression of George V that would fool the king’s mother. He served in the Navy during the Great War, doing very secret and nefarious things. He was a great man, and I loved him very much.

Anyway, Great Grandfather had made money in Jamaican tobacco, which his son then invested in ironworks, making even more money. My father invested his share in ammunition factories a few years before the war kicked off. When daddy died, he left everything to me (well, that which wasn’t swallowed up in death duties), and I immediately began to carefully invest it in Dior, cocaine and Krug, along with the odd share of Ford or Apple over the years.

Ben Marshall (1767-1835) - A Hunt Servant

Daddy, my mother and I lived in a big house, packed with more servants than anyone knew what to do with, usually retired sailors. It was like Downton Abbey except with worse dentistry and more rum, sodomy and tattoos.

Now, Daddy was a powerful and ruthless business man. His first lesson to me was that, in business and in love, both your enemies and friends were fair game, and if you could steal someone’s business or their wife or their damn chair from under them it was your honor-bound duty to do so.

However, he also said that you should always be kind and generous to your servants, not least because, as he put it, you never knew when one of the bastards was going to dunk his syphilitic tackle in your breakfast martini. I suspect that Daddy’s reasons were slightly deeper than just the fear of someone’s dick in his drink. Daddy’s servants were always the happiest and fattest and best dressed in the neighborhood, and so our silver was always the shiniest, our sheets were so well starched you could do yourself an injury on them, and there were never any nasty surprises in the soup. He applied the same rule to the workers in his factories, and there were never strikes because everyone had more than enough to feed and clothe their family and at least one day off a month.

My father also told me that it was your duty to pay the full amount of tax on every dollar that you earned, because otherwise how was the government going to buy all those things it desperately needed, like bullets and iron and tobacco?

Daddy was not a good man. He may have been ruthless. He may, in fact, have been a nasty son-of-a-bitch who’d sell his mother’s ashes to a soap factory or push a business rival under a tram (only once though, and it really might have been an accident).

However, he always said that if the revolution came, he knew that he wouldn’t be one of the ones putting on a blindfold and lining up against a wall. He, unlike our captains of industry of today, knew who buttered his bread and washed his car and shaved his face every morning with four inches of sharpened steel and made his bullets and built the roads that his delivery trucks drove on.

He, unlike much of the 1% today, wasn’t a fucking idiot.

Image: A Hunt Servant – Ben Marshall (1767-1835)

I pull to the left, I heave to the right…

It’s Friday afternoon, which seems like a decent time for our (semi) regular job thread over at Balloon Juice … (Is it blog whoring when you whore someone else’s blog?)

If you are looking for work, looking for talented people, or just have ideas as to how the aforementioned might contact each other, have a look over there, or post here, or both – it bothers me not which you choose.

Our first two threads are here and here in case anyone wants to go back and check if someone responded to their message. If you posted before, feel free to post again. As my great uncle Rupert (the pretender to the Perrott Baronetcy of Plumstead) used to say to me when I was just a young girl, “No one ever got their end in without asking. Several times, if necessary, eh what?” No matter how many times I kicked that man in the groin, he always tried on his next visit. Still, he came to a sticky end, so that all worked out alright.

Oh, and if I was asked, I would say that the Balloon Juice thread is an open-ish thread. Don’t stomp on the job talk, my little loves, but feel free to chat amongst yourselves. ETA: Oh, and don’t feed the you-know-whats.

You might also like to go and visit the lovely Mr Clark at Slacktivist and see what’s happening on his jobs thread. Go for the jobs, stay for the glurge. Great post, even better word… “Glurge”. Like “moist”, only more so.

Speaking of work, this is an opportune moment to explain why I haven’t been posting as much. I have a job. Well, at least a volunteer one. I am, get this, traveling with Michele Bachmann’s campaign entourage.

Now Madam and I have a little bit of a history, but I’ve been playing good Republican woman for almost seventy years now, so it wasn’t hard to talk my way on to the bus. I just dropped a few mentions of “Dear Karl” and the odd “As Nancy said to me at the funeral…” into the conversation with her campaign manager, and flashed around the 4 carat Tiffany (which I won from Nancy Astor in a game of strip cribbage), and before I knew it I was gazing into those crazy snake eyes and being pressed against a perfumed and shapely bosom. That Marcus sure does smell good.

I even have a business card. “Sarah Howard” it says. “Community Liaison”. The other side has a picture of Michelle looking notably crazy (and that, my dears, is an achievement) and staring up at a dyspeptic-looking eagle. I’m not sure if the eagle is supposed to be America or Jesus or what, but whenever I look at the damn card, I hear Rush playing in my head and get a brief sense-memory called “3am-pot-smoke-filled-Mystery-Machine”.

I am liaising with the community. In particular, a rather cute, but horribly conflicted Log Cabin Republican youth with gold-dusted Idaho farmboy thighs, who appears to want only two things in life – to elect Michele Bachmann as President, and to crush out the last flickering flame of his heterosexuality on little old me. I live to serve.

Would you believe that on the first night, they wanted me to stay in a Motel 6? I just found out which hotel Michelle was staying in each night, and then booked into the biggest suite they had. You should have seen her envious glances at my complimentary fruit baskets. However, it used to make the oranges sour and the strawberries positively mealy, so I stopped inviting her to visit after about a week. There was no more mention of the Motel 6, let me tell you.

Anyway, I have my weekends free, so I will be posting here and at Balloon Juice then, and keeping you all up to date on the goings on.

Finally, a couple of you have asked how to get in touch. You can email me from the link on my About page. I do try to respond to emails and website comments, but I’m an old woman who spends her days trying to win the Republican nomination for a pair of false eyelashes, a blouse and a grudge, and her nights pressed against a boy who smells like fresh mown hay and squeaks when you bite his nipples. I barely have time to eat, let alone respond to things like lawyers’ letters, so please be patient with me.

Much love,