Texas Liberal

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Liberal Sources To Learn About Events In Egypt

Protests in Egypt are ongoing.

It is always of value to get the liberal viewpoint on the great world issues.

(Above–The Nation.)

Below are some liberal sources to read about events in Egypt. The link is either to a specific article or to a package of writings about Egypt.  In any case, it would be of value to explore the sites linked to in this post.

The American Prospect is monthly magazine of liberal opinion and policy. I have a home subscription.

The Progressive has been fighting the good fight for over 100 years.

Mother Jones did a great job on coverage of the BP spill. Now they are working hard to report on Egypt.

The Nation is one of the oldest liberal voices in the U.S.

Salon is an online magazine writing extensively on Egypt.

The Atlantic has something of value to say.

Talking Points Memo is a blog/online magazine that merits frequent reading.

This is by no means a complete list. If you have a source you value, please leave a comment.

None of us have enough time to read everything that we would like to read. Still, we can take a few moments to support the media outlets that do the hard work to support our beliefs and goals.

As I mentioned above with The American Prospect, I subscribe to one of these publications. Please consider offering your financial support to these great sources of investigative reporting and astute analysis of current events.

It is up to all of us to do the hard work of freedom. We can’t rely on others to get the facts out to the public. We have to offer our help and support.

February 4, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Have Respect For Your Fellow Working People Who Must Labor On A Holiday—So Many Ways To Ask If Burger King Is Open On Christmas

Last year I wrote a post about a Burger King in Houston being open on Christmas Day. The post was prompted by the picture you see above. I took that picture last December on a very rare snowy day in Houston.

(Picture copyright Neil Aquino.)

My feeling was that Burger King did not need to be open on Christmas Day. The employees would want to be at home with family and Burger King on Christmas Day seemed depressing. I realize  many folks eat at Burger King and I pass no judgment on that fact. I’m simply not certain that Burger King on Christmas Day is needed by anybody if only for the reason that the staff would be forced to be work.

I can recall growing up in New England in the 1970’s when many business places were not open on Sunday.  I don’t know if that was for the best or not, but it was at least a day of rest to a greater extent than we see today. On the other hand, more hours open means more hours for staff to be employed.

On the Christmas Day just past, I did in fact visit a local convenience store/gas station. So you can say I’m a hyprocrite. I walked over to the store to buy an early edition of the Sunday Houston Chronicle. I get the final edition delivered to my door. I did not need to buy the early edition.

However, I also bought two $1 instant lottery tickets and gave them to the clerk. I thanked him for working the holiday. It is up to you to judge if these facts exonerate me.

Burger King stays open on Christmas Day and on other holidays for a very good reason. Many people want to spend money to eat at Burger King on Christmas Day.  At the end of this post are just some of the search terms that internet users wrote on or around Christmas Day 2010 to see if Burger King would be open Christmas Day. There is something like 65 different versions of the question listed below. That is not all of the listings. My blog got more than 900 page views on this topic alone for a post over a year old. (I guess that is some assurance that Texas Liberal has at least a little pull on Google.)

(Above–A Whopper. Here is nutritional information on Whoppers. A Whopper will meet almost all your daily saturated fat needs. Here is nutritional infromation for all Burger King menu offerings.)

Business places have plenty of profit motive to be open on holidays. So I suppose the question is what can we do as working people to acknowledge the fact that some folks must work holidays for non-essential reasons. And ,of course, the same consideration must be accorded to people who must work for the public safety or in any type of business that cannot shut down for a day.

Here are some possibilities for us to act in a respectful way that asserts that value and dignity of all labor—

1. In jobs where tipping is customary, we could tip at the time-and-a-half rate that all workers should expect on a holiday.  If you normally tip 15% for good service, than you could tip 22.5% instead on holidays. If you normally tip close to 20%, as you should consider doing if you have the resources, than a tip near 30% would be fair. This may seem high, but the fact is that your waiter is working a holiday and working people should be mindful of the needs of other working people.

2. We could thank the person for working the holiday. How hard is that?

3. We could tip well and acknowledge the fact someone is working a holiday even if we feel somehow mistreated at our own work. Part of the respect we can show for fellow working people is not to spread around the misery we may feel simply because we lack the personal discipline to care about others.

4. We could advocate year-round for better treatment for working people. All work has value. It is a measure of our own self-respect that we see value and commonality in the circumstances of people who also give the hours of their lives to earn a living. All too often in our nation we have put aside our own best interests and the best interests of fellow working people so we can focus on hating people not like ourselves.

New Year’s Day 2011 is coming up. There is always some holiday on the horizon. Let’s treat people well.

Here is a series of articles from the public policy magazine The American Prospect dealing with how the rights of labor could be improved right now.

We all have the ability to make life better for ourselves and for others. This ability to make life better never takes a holiday.

Here are but some of many ways people inquired as to the availability of a Whopper on Christmas Day—

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December 27, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

I Was Accosted By Angry Weirdo Because I Was Reading Ted Kennedy’s Book

This afternoon I took a walk in Houston’s Memorial Park while reading a book. I often read while I walk when on the Memorial Park walking/jogging trail.

The book I read today was Ted Kennedy’s recently published autobiography. It is called True Compass–A Memoir.

One-third through the book so far, it is a title I can recommend. While an autobiography must often be taken with a grain of salt, there is a measure of candor. The Kennedy story is so well-known that readers can fill in some of the gaps on their own. 

More to the substance of what is gained by reading this title, it is interesting to learn how the Kennedy’s lived as a private family. As I get further along, I’d like to understand better how Senator Kennedy was able to maintain friendships with Republican Senators. Did he do it because it made him more effective as a Senator? Or did he really find a way to look past what in my view are frequent acts of evil by these people?  

Also, it is simply interesting to know what Senator Kennedy thought of the people and events he had seen over his life.

Here is the New York Times review of this book.

As I was walking in the park with my book, another man who was walking asked me what I was reading. This happens sometimes. 

This person was maybe in his 50’s.

I don’t mind talking to people, but what he asked me was—“What are you reading? About sex?”

I looked at him for a moment. I was uncertain why he thought I was walking around reading a book about sex.

When he asked me the question he did not know what I was reading. I think it would have been fine with him if I had been walking around the public park with a sex book of some kind.  

I showed the cover of the book. I said I was reading about Ted Kennedy.

This gentleman sure did go on when I told him this fact. He said “That’s terrible!” He went on about people being murdered for reasons of politics and about election fixing and on and on and on until I walked fast enough and far enough to be out of earshot.

He still might be going on.

I hope I had a hand in ruining this guy’s day.

Again, Senator Kennedy’s book is enjoyable and useful. Today it was useful in annoying a wacko.   

Here is the link to liberal magazine The American Prospect. It is always the right time to learn more about liberalism and to recommit yourself to liberalism.

Here is a post I wrote with links to facts about Senator Kennedy’s life and links to information about some of the causes he supported. 

September 24, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments