Oops – there were raises already

February 15, 2009

In addition to handing out raises to his own staff, Joe seems to have forgotten to mention that there were pay raises for some state employees already.  According to Kabler, “effective Feb. 1, the Division of Personnel upgraded its pay schedule for the first time in seven years, and everyone who fell below the newly raised minimum for their pay grades effectively got a raise with last week’s paycheck.”

While it’s nice that the salary schedules were upgraded, it demonstrates the sad state of affairs in government employment that some people with virtually no on-the-job experience got raises that put them near-equal to workers with many years of exeperience.

Expect an increase in pissed off worker comments over the course of the session.

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We set up podiums for the Governor

February 14, 2009

Yep, according to Matt Turner, Manchin’s new communications director, that justifies 15% pay increases for the Governor’s staff, even as Manchin tells state workers and teachers there’s no money for pay raises.

Turner himself gets a 55% increase as he moves into Lara Ramsburg’s job. That might be considered a promotion, except the Governor has capped payroll increases on state workers who get promotions to 10%. All this because “Today, we all have more responsibility, doing a lot of work with a smaller staff.” Yes, stuff like setting up podiums and making sure the Governor knows where he’s supposed to be.

Everyone in state government knows that as this governor has cut back, he’s expected state workers to assume additional responsibilities and take over the load of workers who don’t get replaced. You’d think Manchin would have a clue about leading by example.

Governor Sarah at Yahoo

September 18, 2008

Bad enough to learn that Sarah Palin and her administration were using personal email accounts to circumvent retention and FOIA rules. But now we find that her Yahoo account, after being hacked and mails being posted to the internet, has been deleted. Does that qualify as destruction of government records?

Check the link for scheenshots of her emails. One would think if she wanted to keep her email out of public scrutiny, she’s select better email addresses than gov.sarah@yahoo and gov.palin@yahoo.

UPDATE: Wikileaks has large screenshots

If Obama wants to win West Virginia

August 31, 2008

…and he can, if he tries…

He needs to show up a bunch.

He needs to get Bill and Hillary to show up a bunch.

Hillary needs to tell her supporters “You voted for me, and I thank you. But I didn’t win. Now you have to choose between Obama and McCain.

“Do I agree with everything Obama wants? No. You heard that in the primaries.

“Do I agree with ANYTHING McCain wants? HELL NO.

“Do I think Sarah Palin is a substitute for me in the next administration? YOU HAVE TO BE KIDDING!

“I want you to vote with me for the Democratic candidate that I’m supporting.”

And it would go over best is Obama is there to receive her ringing endorsement.

It can happen, if they don;t write us off.

McCain’s desperation move

August 31, 2008

It’s becoming more obvious by the minute that John McCain’s VP pick is a desperate attempt at appealing to various groups that he’s having trouble with, even if those groups don’t match up.

  • The women who voted for Hillary Clinton, even though Sarah Palin’s politics don’t come close.
  • The religious right, anti-gay, anti-abortion crowd, even though Palin’s veto of a bill resulted in gay state employees receiving married couple benefits.
  • The pro-drilling crowd, although she also enacted a tax increase on oil companies.
  • The blue-collar crowd, although she is in favor of an oil pipeline through Alaska, shipping jobs over the border.

Don’t take my word for it, read
What is McCain Thinking? One Alaskan’s Perspective.

Red State Syndrome

August 11, 2008

A sad article in today’s Gazette indicates that both McCain and Obama have decided West Virginia is a solid red state in the General Election, so neither of them needs to bother with us. The comments that follow below the article are pretty depressing, too.

WV Democrats voted solidly for Hillary. OK, it’s obvious that Obama has the nomination locked up. But West Virginians can’t seem to get over the fact that the superdelegates decided to throw their weight behind Obama, as if their half a dozen votes would change the events at the upcoming convention. Obama has it locked up, get over it. The only thing the superdelegates can do now is throw their support behind the presumptive candidate and try to get some voice in the VP slot, or maybe convince Obama that WV is not a McCain lock, and get him to get his ass into West Virginia so the voters can see and touch him.

If West Virginians are such racists, I wonder what the black population in McDowell County thinks about Obama staying clear of West Virginia? But I digress.

Even McCain is taking WV for granted, which I find insulting, and I’m a Dem! I’m insulted that either of these guys think they can count on WV to vote the way they think. I’m insulted that neither one thinks we’re worth their effort. I only hope that Obama’s lack of interest doesn’t make WV Democrats vote Republican yet again.

I propose that WV Democrats, if they get pissed off enough at Obama’s disinterest, just not vote at all in the Presidential race. Oh, definitely go to the polls and vote for the other races, but if WV is going to be a Red State, don’t give them your vote to count. Just don’t check either McCain or Obama. Imagine if, after the votes are counted, it’s noted that there were ten thousand fewer votes cast in the Presidential race than in the others. That might just make a statement.

Has anyone noticed the similarity?

August 11, 2008

Todays Comic

Has Scott Adams been visiting Culture and History?

Teachers need incentives to go to work every day

June 4, 2008

The Kanawha County School Board voted 4-1 to continue the incentive pay for teachers to show up for work every day. You don’t know how much I hate agreeing with Pete Thaw.

Obviously, if there’s been a sudden drop in illness among teachers, it shows that they were abusing their sick leave privileges in the past. You are only supposed to take off sick for legitimate illness or appointments. I wonder if students have noticed their teachers showing up for work more often?

I wonder how Joe Manchin would feel about this policy for state employees?

Dick Cheney is a dick

June 3, 2008

But we knew that before he made the stupid joke about West Virginia on video.

Nick Rahall gets quote of the day:

“We may owe the vice president a debt of gratitude for yet another great West Virginia slogan: ‘Dick Cheney is not from here.'”

A disrespected visionary?

June 1, 2008

Interesting items to take away from Phil Kabler’s report on the Fred Armstrong firing:

1. Randall Reid-Smith has a low threshold of pain when it comes to “disrespect.” Lack of self-esteem?

2. Kay Goodwin is not RRS’s boss. She didn’t have anything to do with hiring him, and was not involved (she says) in firing Armstrong. His backing comes from Manchin’s Chief of Staff. What the hell does she do over there all day? Apparently the Governor’s office didn’t even consult her before appointing RRS, which also shows that they were waiting for their opportunity to get rid of Troy Body and give the job to Reid-Smith.

3. RRS was given assurance he could “form his own leadership team when he was hired to carry forward his vision.” Apparently that included appointing a Museum Director with no prior experience in museums. One wonders if they are going to find an Archives Director of equal qualifications.

4. RRS claims to be a visionary, but the idea about the cafe came from consultants. Then again, no idea that RRS has come up with on his own since his tenure as Culture Czar has been a good one.