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Comment: Re:No, school should not be year-round. (Score 1) 421

by mark_reh (#47642435) Attached to: Slashdot Asks: Should Schooling Be Year-Round?

My "freedom loving" countrymen who want it that way are the guys who run the big companies. They, of course, get all the time off they want, and their jobs resemble time off anyway (golf and ski outings, dining out with others of their sort and politicians, etc.).

I used to work for HP in the early 90s. Every year the HR dept would host big meetings in which they announced the annual pay raises. They would come out and do a power point presentation describing how they had got together with the HR people from every big engineering employer in the SW US to define job title, duties, pay and benefits. Then they would announce that all the engineers were getting a 2.5% pay increase for the coming year and everyone would cheer, ignoring the fact that they were just told that HP had been colluding to limit pay and benefits with other major engineering companies.

I had been there for a number of years and had my annual vacation up to 3 weeks (not that I could ever actually take it). I interviewed for work elsewhere and found the pay offered at the new positions was exactly the same, but that my vacation time would reset to 2 weeks (not that I could ever use it). After many months of looking I finally took a job at a Japanese company that wasn't part of the network of collusion and got a hefty pay increase and even additional vacation (not that I could ever use it).

When you're an engineer and you want to take your vacation time in the US they came at you with "we're at a critical point in this project- you can't take off now", but you're ALWAYS at a critical point in some project, so you can almost never take off more than a day at a time. When you're young, dumb, and have no family you take this abuse, but as you get older and start pushing back they squeeze you out.

Comment: Re:No, school should not be year-round. (Score 1) 421

by mark_reh (#47641145) Attached to: Slashdot Asks: Should Schooling Be Year-Round?

The US is not a reasonable employment environment. In the US you are "given" typically 2 weeks, but in most professional occupations, you are lucky to actually get 1 week off in a year. When I was an engineer if I tried to take more than a day or two at a time I was given the hairy eyeball by management and branded "not a team player".

The hours worked per year in the US are probably the highest of any "developed" country. Do you think it's because we want it that way? I don't know anyone who doesn't want to take 6 weeks off per year. One of the main attractions to the teaching profession is the long summer break. It is so attractive that many forego the higher pay in other professions because they want to enjoy their lives a little.

Comment: Re:No, school should not be year-round. (Score 1) 421

by mark_reh (#47640477) Attached to: Slashdot Asks: Should Schooling Be Year-Round?

When you consider the hell their lives will become once they finish school, never getting more than a week or so off in a year, yeah, let them have a little time off ferchrissakes.

On the other hand, maybe if kids went to school year round they would be able to take off time as adults instead of working 51 weeks per year to try to keep up with smarter people in other countries (who went to school year round as kids).

Comment: Re:Non transferable to another game, (Score 1) 146

by mark_reh (#47634593) Attached to: The ESports Athletes Who Tried To Switch Games

Yeah, and someone wins the lottery, too. That doesn't make it a good investment.

The number of people who make any money at video games vs the number who waste the biggest portion of their lives when they could be learning things is about as miniscule as your chances of winning the lottery. I stand by my assertion that it is a waste of time.

Comment: Why should anyone trust this or any other (Score 1) 175

by mark_reh (#47631707) Attached to: Yahoo To Add PGP Encryption For Email

encryption? I seem to recall news about 6 months ago that RSA Security took $10M from the NSA for allegedly tweaking a random number generator or some such thing. I know PGP is open source, but who knows enough about both encryption math and programming to actually verify that the code is safe, and why should anyone trust them?

The IBM purchase of ROLM gives new meaning to the term "twisted pair". -- Howard Anderson, "Yankee Group"