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Comment What is the problem? (Score 2) 602

I don't see a problem with this -- as long as each employee gets a severance package worth $200,000. I'd view it as a retainer worth about 2 years of salary.

If the severance is not enough to act as a retainer for my services, then (as others mentioned) I would conveniently forget my old job if ever asked for help. I would suggest (off the record) that a substantial payment at that time could jog my memory, but without further compensation I just can't be bothered to try.

I did sign a 3 month retainer agreement when (voluntarily) leaving a job. It turned out to be a good deal for both parties. They needed me exactly once -- but wow, did they ever need me then, LOL. Of course, if you are leaving voluntarily, you are in a much stronger position to negotiate, since you have a waiting position and are not facing unemployment and needing a reference.

Comment Gotta remember this excuse (Score 0) 128

Next time I have to stay late at the office, I can just tell my spouse I was kidnapped by the drug cartel to work on their IT infrastructure. I wonder how close one must be to the border to make that look legit?

It would be a good excuse if you want to leave it all behind and start up somewhere new - "the drug cartel made me do it!"

Comment Homeschooling works as well as you make it work (Score 1) 700

I'm biased, having homeschooled our 3 children and have seen the results first hand. That said, nearly 100% of the benefit of home schooling can be summed up in 2 words -- "parental involvement". I never look down on those who choose to utilize the public school system, or any system. The reason our kids "turned out well" is because we worked very hard to make it so. It's certainly no guarantee, but if you spend time looking at options and choose the option that seems best for your kids (and by extension, best for you, you are heavily invested in them), you will be doing the right thing.

Like many things in life, you will get out of your kids schooling, what you put into it. Don't abandon your kids to the school system, that guarantees a bad outcome. Take control and be an active, involved parent, and whatever option you choose will be great for them.

Comment Re:In Finland (Score 1) 516

This is exactly right! Why do I never have mod points when I need them . . .

I have long felt this way too. As others have pointed out, the US is all about capitalism, so take away some of the shareholder dividends by making the power company rebate money paid for service when the service fails and the problem will solve itself in an efficient manner. Gradually increase the penalties on a fixed schedule so the companies can plan for long term upgrades where the infrastructure is at the highest risk (rather than where the the PUC officials live - which is, I suspect, a large part of the equation now). Mandating improvements on a monopoly only results in government fines that the company officials use in the cost benefit analysis about infrastructure improvements. Give the money back to the customer and that will reduce the "sting" of a power failure.

Imagine if you got 1 day of free electric service for every hour of downtime? I'd be very happy with that and easily convinced that the power company was doing their very best to restore service quickly because it was hitting them squarely in the pocketbook.

Comment 2 types of recruiters and 2 types of candidates (Score 3, Insightful) 253

There are 2 types of recruiters, those with "skin in the game" (like in house recruiters) and those only trying to make their quota so they can keep eating.

There are 2 types of candidates, those who need a job bad enough to work with any recruiter, and those that can get a job easily because they have "in demand" skills, they don't need (or want to deal with) the second type of recruiter.

Luckily, I'm the second type of candidate and I will never again deal with the second type of recruiter. I love captive recruiters, even if I don't particularly care to work for their company, and I will happily give them referrals if I can. But the independent recruiters are all scum, and I choose that characterization carefully, I've never met one that was not, though interestingly they all swear they are different than the others. I'm working on a form letter to send to the scum recruiters, but I'm too nice to actually send it, so I'll just continue to ignore them. Like telemarketers and spammers, I realize they need to make a living, they just aren't going to get any help from me.

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