September 2011 Archives

September 1, 2011

Fox News, Maternity Leave, Government Benefits, & Hypocrisy...

If you watched John Stewart August 11th, you got a clear look at Fox News Hypocrisy.

A "reporter", fresh from maternity leave, confronted a talk show host who had called such leave a racket, and when he objected that men don't get such leave she proudly announced "oh, yes they do," to justify her defense of taking the benefit from her employer. She was very vocal about the need for such a social program forced on employers by the government, and how good it is for society.

Now, as a small business man, I have a problem with maternity leave for small businesses, where the loss of a key employee can have a devastating effect - often a person who cannot be replaced without months of training of someone to take his or her place must be replaced for a few months, but that is a nuance about application rather than opposition entirely as a matter of social policy. It would have a major impact on my law practice if I lost one of my paralegals for 3 months.

The problem is that this reporter had previously railed against such benefits as Socialism. Stewart was pointing out the problem when you take a benefit that affects you, but object to the same or similar benefits when they affect someone else. This happens over and over again on the network, but also among those who use the "conservative" badge to advance their own causes.

A prime example is Michelle Bachman and her family - she gladly accepts subsidies for one family business, and Medicare payments that support another. Another is the red state politicians demanding aide from FEMA for the recent floods, while those from states that weren't flooded insisting the government cut other programs before helping with the cleanup and rebuilding programs, let alone the need to help individuals feed, clothe, and house themselves on a short term basis.

There are good and bad in most such programs - that's why I take a more nuanced view, where you tailor the program so that it does a combination of good, without too much bad. This happens time and time again in government, and why compromise is essential.