31 thoughts on “Our Daily Thread 10-4-17

  1. My question is where did I put the lid to my yogurt container? I was half asleep and making a breakfast bowl of yogurt/mango/Cheerios. I put the yogurt lid in an undisclosed location. It probably went in the trash can in which I could see only what landed on top. I refused to search through the trash when plastic wrap sat handy in the pantry.

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  2. A long day here. Already in Pensacola. I have staff meeting, teach from 9-12 and from 1-2 then drive home to get luggage and Mr. P, head to New Orleans for the night, then tomorrow fly into an area that is currently under a tropical storm/hurricane watch.
    Amos is with his step parents. I think he is going to work with his stepmother today. 😉

    QOD: Did I pack enough clothes? Answer: Too many.

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  3. Did I get up on the wrong side of the bed again today? I hope not. Time will tell. Yesterday was not one of my shining days. 😦 I didn’t sleep well last night, so that won’t help. But maybe we can let up on the Vegas coverage now, we’ve all been run ragged with that since first thing Monday morning.

    We passed around a card (I have a stack of “Goodbye!” cards now at my desk, there has been wave after wave of departures) and said goodbye to yet another colleague yesterday, a photographer. One more (a newsroom assistant) leaves Friday and that should clear us out pretty good. For now. Until the next cutbacks roll around. And there will be a next time. There are always more to come. It’s so much fun being owned by a hedge fund.

    Light project continues (and should wrap up) today. But the light they put on the garage facing the driveway — a “dusk to dawn” motion light that I thought was supposed to stay on (in a dim mode) all night long) was off last night when I got up and looked out. I’ll have to ask the guys about that.

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  4. You know how students are supposed to put their name in the front of the textbook and the condition of the book when they get them at the first of the year? Son signed his as Jesus Christ. He gets away with that kind of thing all of the time at the school. It is frustrating. And they send paperwork home to us through him. We rarely get any of it. He believes he is capable of raising himself. Educationally, he is doing a poor job.

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  5. Donna, It’s no consolation, but the same thing is happening at my husband’s company – a printing company that mostly produces books. His last “salary action” was about 10 years ago and was a 10% cut. They continue to let folks go and expect the same amount of work to be done. The really frustrating part is that the parent company continues to hire highly-paid “directors” with nebulous titles such as “Business Intelligence Director.” Those who sit in penthouses and make decisions have no clue.

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  6. ouch. I like that terminology, “salary action.”

    Here’s a piece on our owners — The Nation is a partisan (liberal) publication so some of the general anti-capitalism comments are typical, but this article hits the mark in many ways, sadly.

    https://www.thenation.com/article/how-many-palm-beach-mansions-does-a-wall-street-tycoon-need/

    ________________________________

    … The shrinking and disappearing of hometown newspapers has done incalculable damage to Americans’ knowledge of the world around them. Democratic self-governance presumes an informed public, but the -hollowing-out of America’s newspapers, in both their online and print versions, leaves citizens increasingly ignorant of vital public matters. It also undermines the press’s ability to hold elected officials and powerful interests to account. When vulture capitalism eliminates reporters and closes hometown papers, where can citizens turn for in-depth local news? Who will cover City Council meetings, school-board decisions, election campaigns, and other staples of civic life? And who will call out corruption and incompetence on the part of local officials or private companies? …

    … The most commonly cited culprit for the decline of America’s newspapers is the Internet and the assumption that no one needs to pay for news anymore. But simple capitalist greed is also to blame. Since 2004, speculators have bought and sucked dry an estimated 679 hometown newspapers that reached a combined audience of 12.8 million people.

    Unlike large corporate owners in the past, the stated goal of the investment firms is not to keep struggling newspapers alive; it is to siphon off the assets and profits, then dispose of what little remains. Under this strategy, America’s newsrooms shriveled from 46,700 full-time journalists in 2009 to 32,900 in 2015—a loss of roughly one journalist out of every three. The American Society of Newspaper Editors stopped trying to estimate the number of working journalists in 2016 because “layoffs, buyouts, and restructuring are a norm.”

    Over the past six years, Digital First Media has become America’s second-largest newspaper chain in terms of circulation. Even as Digital First has downsized or closed its papers, it has held its edge in circulation by continually buying up more publications, such as last year’s acquisition of The Orange County Register. Digital First’s annual profits have averaged a handsome 10 to 12 percent under Alden Global Capital’s management, according to industry analysts, with its smaller publications yielding more than 20 percent. (Because Alden Global Capital is privately held, its financial statements are not publicly available.) Since 2015, the company has intensified its cost-cutting to the point that it imposes budget cuts and layoffs at twice the average rate for US newspapers. …
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  7. “Unlike large corporate owners in the past, the stated goal of the investment firms is not to keep struggling newspapers alive; it is to siphon off the assets and profits, then dispose of what little remains.”
    Bingo. The same is true in the printing industry.

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  8. None of our papers have real estate anymore, all the buildings have been sold and we’re left to lease space (ours is way too big for us now due to all the cutbacks in the past 9 years) so we’ll be moving to something smaller in February. I sit in what is a largely empty newsroom, amid a sea of empty desks.

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  9. DJ, the building my husband works in was owned by his company before they were bought out by a bigger one. An executive at the bigger company personally bought the building and is now leasing it back to them at an exorbitant rate.

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  10. A lot of things have happened over the years in the pharmaceutical industry, too. So much work went to contracts and many employees have lost their jobs like my brother. Tricks are performed to make companies look good for a buyout. In the end it is the lower line employees who pay the price through job loss.

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