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Knee-jerk patriotism regarding Sept 11th? - Paint It Black
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Knee-jerk patriotism regarding Sept 11th?
Perhaps, but I signed the petition to make Sep 11th a national holiday anyways. I think that, by and large, it's for the right reasons.

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Comments
pogo101 From: pogo101 Date: April 19th, 2002 03:50 am (UTC) (Link)

Leave it to a lawyer to pick nits

It's a noble idea, but I couldn't sign because the petition leaves unclear whether the "national holiday" will be a paid one and, if so, whether it will replace another one. We have enough, or too many, paid holidays as it is, IMO. So if we add this one, we should strip another, currently *paid* holiday of its paid status (thus allowing people to take that day off, still, but not to get paid if they do). Otherwise, in a couple of centuries, we'll end up with dozens and dozens of being paid to stay home.
ronbar From: ronbar Date: April 19th, 2002 04:21 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Leave it to a lawyer to pick nits

What's wrong with dozens and dozens of paid holidays? Don't salaried people already get two of them every week?
jdm314 From: jdm314 Date: April 19th, 2002 05:15 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Leave it to a lawyer to pick nits

Cool! Just like imperial Rome!
brianblackberry From: brianblackberry Date: April 19th, 2002 05:18 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Leave it to a lawyer to pick nits

Why would you object to having a day off from your job and still get paid for it? Its is a win-win situation if you look at it form a purly personal standard (putting aside the meaning of the day for a moment), you get paid and you have a day off. Right now there is generally only six paid national holidays: New Year's, Memorial Day, 4th of July, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas. All others are either particular state holidays or holidays for goverment employees only (and usually only goverment employees get the state ones). I know at my job only the above six (plus Christmas Eve, but only because the employer chose to give that day off) are paid holidays. That doesn't seem like 'too many' to me. Besides right now Americans on average work more hours per week then any other industriaized nation now (including Japan), and compared to Euroe's standards of employee vacation and holiday time off we look like people who seem to do nothing but work all the time
From: aimeekitty Date: April 19th, 2002 05:35 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Leave it to a lawyer to pick nits

Several reasons that interrelate. At the outset, let me state that I favor a change in the law that would require larger employers to give employees some minimum number of "floating" paid holidays, but not be required to have mandatory, company-wide paid holidays.

1. Minimal government. Remember that the "paid" part of having a commemorative (sp?) holiday is the part that says to employers, "You SHALL pay your workers for doing NOTHING today, or you will be in violation of law, potentially going to jail or at least incurring large monetary penalties that put at risk your competitiveness." I think that such a power should be used sparingly. Refrain: It is perfectly okay to have a national UNPAID holiday -- one on which one may choose to take the day off if one wishes, unpaid.

2. Fairness. One must consider the viewpoint of those who are *paying* for the paid holiday. In the case of private employers, it's the private employer. "Stick to the man" may be very hip, but it's doesn't make much economic or moral sense, except in the crassest relativist sense (i.e., "better him than me"), IMO. In the case of public employers, we all pay. (Insert refrain here.)

3. Honoring the memory of a special day may require time off, but it doesn't require money.

4. There must be some limit on the number of paid holidays we recognize, lest we end up with dozens and dozens of them at some future point. The nation has already recognized this principle tacitly by combining the previously-separate holidays for Washington's and Lincoln's birthdays into one Presidents' Day. We just added MLKJ Day to the list. More great men, women and events shall come along in time, deserving a holiday. What then? Just keep on adding? (Insert refrain.)

5. Remember vacation. Most employers give employees at least two weeks' vacation per year. PAID vacation, that is. Nothing is stopping employees from using that time to take a day off in memory of an event that is special to them personally. *Also* remember that many employers are strapped to remain competitive, and, if they are forced by law to give another "day of payroll costs but with no revenue," then they may well respond by reducing, by one, the number of annual paid vacation days they allow. It's what I might do. As an employee, you wouldn't expect to get something for nothing, would you?

Just some ideas. Curious what others think.

I WOULD favor this new holiday (paid) if, say, we combined it with Memorial Day or some other similarly-themed holiday -- and thus did not add to the number of paid holidays
pogo101 From: pogo101 Date: April 19th, 2002 05:36 am (UTC) (Link)

whoops

Foregoing post was by me. My wife's ID was the one that was logged in ...
(Deleted comment)
pogo101 From: pogo101 Date: April 19th, 2002 08:46 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: whoops

I married well, didn't I? :)

She is the artist in the household. I am the BS artist. :P
varro From: varro Date: April 19th, 2002 01:24 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: whoops

Isn't that familiar?

(I'm also a lawyer with an artist SO.)
brianblackberry From: brianblackberry Date: April 19th, 2002 09:11 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Leave it to a lawyer to pick nits

aimeekitty wrote:

Minimal government. Remember that the "paid" part of having a commemorative (sp?) holiday is the part that says to employers, "You SHALL pay your workers for doing NOTHING today, or you will be in violation of law, potentially going to jail or at least incurring large monetary penalties that put at risk your competitiveness." I think that such a power should be used sparingly. Refrain: It is perfectly okay to have a national UNPAID holiday -- one on which one may choose to take the day off if one wishes, unpaid.

Actually the goverment does not require by law on a state, national, or local level that private employers give paid holidays off, the government 'rules' for paid days off only apply to the people employed by them. If an private sector employer chooses not to pay the employees for those days off, there is no legel recourse for the employee, no fines, penelties, etc. All paid holidays are fringe benifits. That's why the amount vary from employer to employer. Some do not give any. When I worked at Amoco, we had no paid holidays, we did get double time for working them instead, but this was a company policy (Shell only gave time and a half for example).

Fairness. One must consider the viewpoint of those who are *paying* for the paid holiday. In the case of private employers, it's the private employer. "Stick to the man" may be very hip, but it's doesn't make much economic or moral sense, except in the crassest relativist sense (i.e., "better him than me"), IMO. In the case of public employers, we all pay. (Insert refrain here.)

Well since its a fringe benifit based on company policy, it is the company who decided on their own to pay for particular days off. The main reason for this of course is compitition for employees, the same reasons for bonuses, stock options, and any other perks. In a world where there is compititon between employeers of the same market this is just one more benifit for the general population and one less if the world simply consisted of monopolies and trusts.

As for getting something for nothing, employers do that now to the employees. In the wonderful world of salary, you get paid the same no matter how many hours they may require you to work at certain times. And I can safely say that though they may often 'request' one to work well over 40 hours for weeks at a time, they won't 'make it up' by letting one work well under the 40 hour standard in any giving week
pogo101 From: pogo101 Date: April 19th, 2002 10:54 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Leave it to a lawyer to pick nits

Some very good points inasmuch as my facts were obviously off on the law with respect to private employers. I wonder if I was thinking of the law in some European countries? That is, aren't most larger employers in, say, Norway, required to give certain (or a certain number of) paid days off, on pain of ... legal sanctions? Anyway. You are right and I was wrong there.

Back in the USA, though, what about public-sector employers? Is there a limit to how many holidays taxpayers should be made to fund for public-sector employees? If so, what is that number of days? (After all, whether by law or by custom, those employees do get all of these national holidays off -- and paid.) Speaking as a federal employee myself, I'll take 'em, but at some point I will feel guilty about it -- and feel like people who know of my employment will look at me resentfully. "There goes that federal employee. How was that nice holiday I paid you for? grumble grumble ..."

(re something for nothing) I fail to see how the fact that some individual employers exploit workers justifies anything other than employees' quitting (or otherwise taking action in grievance against) those specific employers. In any case, that misbehavior certainly doesn't prompt me to agree that a proposed national holiday should be enacted or that, if it is enacted, it should be paid (... or, to limit the point per your correction: that it should be "paid" only for public-sector employees).

If we as a nation and a culture have too few national, paid holidays -- a matter that is too impossibly subjective to prove or disprove logically -- then I ask: what cardinal number of them is the right number, neither too many nor too few
brianblackberry From: brianblackberry Date: April 19th, 2002 07:06 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Leave it to a lawyer to pick nits

Mitch (pogo101) stated:

Some very good points inasmuch as my facts were obviously off on the law with respect to private employers. I wonder if I was thinking of the law in some European countries? That is, aren't most larger employers in, say, Norway, required to give certain (or a certain number of) paid days off, on pain of ... legal sanctions? Anyway. You are right and I was wrong there.

Very likely. Many European nations do have varying government laws dealing with these issues Depending on the nation one lives in, the laws may encompass mandated vacation time, paid holidays, additional protections from firings/layoffs, as well as several additional pay benefits. In France for example, everyone gets six weeks of vacation time I believe. In Sweden one gets 50% of their pay when on maternity leave and receives 90% of their pay while only working 50% of their hours during the first 10 years of the child's life (only applies to mothers). Now employers do not have to pay for all of these worker benefits (they don't pay in the case of the latter two examples), the government will instead, but the flip side of that (other then loss of productivity for the employers in either case) is a very high tax rate. Personally I think taxes here are high enough, I wouldn't ever want to pay into the tax system many Europeans have to.

As for how many paid holidays public sector employees receive. My guess is the best system is to have them on par with what the average private sector employee receives doing a similar job perhaps. I suppose it is truly up to the voters of the nation, state, etc. to decide this since, at least in theory, the government works for them and therefore the people though their representatives can set such policies.

If we as a nation and a culture have too few national, paid holidays -- a matter that is too impossibly subjective to prove or disprove logically -- then I ask: what cardinal number of them is the right number, neither too many nor too few

That is a very hard question to answer. It really depends on what us as a culture basically feel what holidays are important enough to generally push for as standard holidays off. Since they is no actual requirement by employers to give any holidays off its really a decision by mass consensus. Employers general do what they think will be a benefit to the employees and themselves (as bosses like to have time off too).
yakko From: yakko Date: April 19th, 2002 11:30 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Leave it to a lawyer to pick nits

Well, if the holiday's going to be unpaid, I'll just buck up and work every one of them.

It makes no sense whatsoever to me to take unpaid vacation when I have a boatload of work left to be done, and I can't afford it.

Also, it appears to me that all the holidays between New Year's and Memorial Day are optional -- they're never authorised as holidays by my company.

As for paid vacation, I got past the point of caring if I ever got to spend it how I wanted ages ago. I usually end up taking the last week of the year off, then carrying over what's left.
12 thoughts or Leave a thought