Phyllis Schlafly confuses urban legend with truth, Arlington with Europe

Phyllis Schlafly says that President Obama is planning to remove the crosses at Arlington Cemetery:

You were talking a minute ago about Arlington Cemetery; if you haven’t been there, I’m sure you’ve seen pictures of all the crosses there and I just wonder if the day is going to come when they want to take down all those crosses.

This is Arlington National Cemetery. Those are not crosses.

The reference is to this urban legend — usually told about the ACLU — debunked by Snopes here.

Snopes also notes that this image of a cemetery filled with crosses has nothing to do with Arlington. That’s a picture of Arlington there on the right. And below it is the picture often circulated with the lying-spam email recounting the urban legend Schlafly is repeating. It’s also apparently the picture in Schlafly’s head — confusing a European cemetery with the national cemetery in Arlington.

The implication in [the urban legend] — that the ACLU’s opposition to religious displays on state property extends to its advocating the removal of headstones and burial markers from federal cemeteries in the U.S. (although the message is accompanied by a photograph of a cemetery in Europe where American World War II servicemen are interred) — is another example of one group’s exaggerating its opponent’s position in order to mobilize support through political outrage.

This is not Arlington National Cemetery. This is not even in America.

Or, in other words, Phyllis Schlafly is a liar who doesn’t know what Arlington National Cemetery looks like but enjoys denouncing the patriotism of America-hating liberals who refuse to accept the picture of it she has in her head.

This seems to be a habit for right-wing faux patriots busily condemning others’ patriotism — they have no idea what the gravestones at Arlington really look like. Here’s an item from August of 2000: “Cheney speech got Arlington Cemetery wrong.”

Contrary to the emotional picture painted by Dick Cheney in his speech at the Republican convention Tuesday night, there are no crosses in Arlington National Cemetery.

In accepting the Republican nomination for vice president, Cheney closed  his speech with a moving description of the helicopter ride he used to take from Andrews Air Force Base to the Pentagon when he was Secretary of Defense.

He described the power of the various monuments of Washington in the order the chopper passes them, ending with the famous military cemetery that abuts the Pentagon.

“Just before you settle down on the landing pad, you look upon Arlington National Cemetery…its gentle slopes and crosses row on row,” Cheney said.

… Cheney would appear to be confusing Arlington with Flanders Fields, a poem written by John McCrea about the World War I battlefields of Northern France: “In Flanders fields the poppies blow/ Between the crosses row on row.”

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  • Caravelle

    Oh dear.
    If I recall the military sections of the cemetary I’ve gone to most in France, all those crosses are for the Christian dead – there are also headstones with a crescent moon or a Star of David for Muslims and Jews. I don’t know how diverse they actually are, but they do account for some religious diversity at least.

    Isn’t it interesting though that the most obvious marker left behind a dead person in the military denotes their religion ? I guess it makes some sense in that one big thing religions do is offer differing hypotheses about what happens after you die, but it isn’t the only thing they do, and how important they are to one’s personal life differs on the person. (not to mention, what happens after you die is usually involves one’s identity being independent of one’s body, and thus one’s gravestone). 
    Among civilians the most obvious features of a gravestone will usually be its overall size and fanciness (class), its level of upkeep (still alive and available loved ones), and one’s name and dates. And then usually things denoting their relationships (“beloved wife, mother and sister”).

  • Doc1hawkeye

    FWIW, I googled ‘arlington national cemetary headstones,’ and found a web page with about thirty different emblems, including emblems for religions I’d never heard of, approved for use on headstones at Arlington.

  • Lori

    Yup. The headstones at Arlington are all the same, it’s the carving that varies. Something those super patriots Phyllis and Dick would know if they’d ever paid the slightest attention to the supposed hallowed ground.

  • heckblazer

    There were quite a few Muslims in the colonial French troops in both World Wars, so I would expect Muslim headstones in French cemetaries.

  • christopher_young

    Likewise Indian Muslims fighting for the British empire. Alas.

  • Nomuse

    When I was in, I was in a headquarters unit of an engineer company.  We were acquainted with graves registration and the activities of front-line chaplains and we grasped that, for us non-specific non-practicers, the major practical purpose of the religion listed on our dog tags was to help the guy know which set of magic words from his wallet card to read over our bodies.

    So we went off-post and had new dog tags made reading “Pagan” (trying to properly name the Germanic/Norse paganism we were after would have been too difficult).  We figured if the Army was going to get us killed, the least it owed us was to send us down a river in a flaming jeep.  Although we’d settle for a small bonfire and a case of beer for our buddies.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    What I find astonishingly shamelesss is the sheer degree to which the Religious Right (and their political fellow travellers) appropriate the very deep-seated nature of religious imagery and feelings as a cheap button-pushing technique to rile up the voters.

  • michael mcshea

    Phyllis should perhaps cut back on telephone interviews for talk radio and her nurses should perhaps increase the rate on her morphine drip at the hospice. She is a dying breed of dinosaur. LOL

  • Tonio

    Another liar is  Louie Gohmert , who claims that people who use the name of the Christian god in high-school graduation ceremonies have been threatened with jail time.

    Aside – I wasn’t surprised to see Mike Huckabee supporting Chick-fil-A. That company’s CEO takes a position on the legality of same-sex marriage that is identical to Huckabee’s, which is a theocratic one. 

  • ConservativeWhitebread

    Pffft.  Facts.

  • flat

    maybe we should throw schlafly’s death body in the garbage bin where it belongs.

  • LoneWolf343

     Put a little cross on the dumpster just for the lulz.

  • Jim Roberts

    Umm, I don’t think that wishing death upon someone is necessarily what’s called for here. For one, replace Ms. Schafly’s name with Mr. Clark’s and I feel like I’m reading the comment thread on her site. That’s probably not a good thing.

  • Guest

    What I’m confused by is how everyone is acting so surprised about Chick-fil-A. It’s not like they or Hobby Lobby make a secret of their beliefs. Were their anti-gay beliefs really such a surprise?

    (My alma mater has a Chick-fil-A in their on-campus student center, which you might just think was about adding a tasty fast food place on campus, but I assure you is very much about being ardent Chick-fil-A supporters. Relatedly, James Dobson, Cam-Cam, and Mr. Cathy have all been inducted into their “Society of World Changers”. I swear every alumni magazine is a new horrorshow.)

    Now there’s an article going around on Facebook about “do we want to be a country where people choose not to frequent stores because of their beliefs” and, well, first of all, yes, that sounds good, that sounds, dare I say it, free-market-y; and secondly, it’s like they’re unaware of those phone books you can get (“Christian Yellow Pages”) that explicitly only list Christian-owned companies, and I mean like plumbers and accountants, not national fast food and craft chains. I want to tell them, um, guys, you’ve been frequenting companies based on their beliefs for years now, why you mad that other people do too?

  • Tonio

    Were their anti-gay beliefs really such a surprise?

    I think the surprise was that their CEO discussed those beliefs publicly, or semi-publicly if one considers that the Baptist Press has a sectarian readership. Although the restaurants are closed on Sundays, they don’t engage in obvious proselytizing unlike In-n-Out, which puts Biblical verses on its containers. (Ironic considering the suggestive nature of the name, like the puritanical Amish living in towns named Intercourse and Virginville.)

    Cathy’s position on SSM is wrong on numerous levels:
    * He sees marriage and family as exclusively Christian concepts
    * He rejects the concept of secular lawmaking, believing that his religion’s scripture should be the basis for civil law
    * He doesn’t even try to offer a secular nonsectarian argument against SSM
    * He presumes to decide for other people who they should marry, instead of deciding only for himself and recognizing that other people’s choices of spouses are none of his business
    * (This one is too obvious) “First wives”? Do his executives already have mistresses waiting in the wings? Do they plan on trading in every few years like Larry King or Tom Cruise?

  • Jim Roberts

    My favouriteskit from The Meaning of Life is right after the “wafer-thin mint” bit, where the maitre d’ is chatting with the cleaning lady. She tells this great wonderful story about her life and philosophy and the breadth of her experience and the brotherhood of man. The speech ends with her saying, “Well, at least I don’t work for Jews.”

    This situation, and several others showing up int he broader culture, are a bit like that. Anti-homosexual sentiment, like anti-semitism, is something that’s always been a part of our culture, but no one talked about it. You didn’t say you hated homosexuals, you just nodded along as the proper sorts of people said that they did.

    I’m not sure when it changed, but the ability to keep these prejudices internalized seems to be fading. I’m glad for it – I like to know at least a little bit about the bigotry or those who might have some hold over me – and I sincerely think that it represents a tipping point in favour of SSM and LGBT equality. When the dog whistle doesn’t work, you resort to calling out names.

  • http://www.blogger.com/home?pli=1 Coleslaw

    I think that’s “first wives” as opposed to junior wives. That would be Biblical.

  • Rowen

     they don’t engage in obvious proselytizing unlike In-n-Out, which puts Biblical verses on its containers

    Maybe this is a newer thing, but I remember their kids meal toys being VERY Christian, like Adventures from the Book of Virtues and Adventures in Odyssey tapes. I still have a bunch of those somewhere.

  • JayemGriffin

    I’ve vaguely heard of Adventures from the Book of Virtues, 

  • Lunch Meat

     

    Although the restaurants are closed on Sundays, they don’t engage in
    obvious proselytizing unlike In-n-Out, which puts Biblical verses on its
    containers.

    This probably shows my privilege, but I was under the impression that In-N-Out’s Bible verses are not as objectionable because they don’t shove it in people’s faces–the verses are on the bottom of the cups and bags, for instance, and you almost have to look for it to see it. Obviously, I completely understand and accept if people of other religions are bothered by it, since it’s another example of Christian cultural dominance. I just didn’t think it was as big a deal as other things.

    Does anyone know if In-n-Out donates to anti-gay/pro-right-wing groups? Their food is like a little piece of home for me, so it would be slightly disappointing to have to stop eating it, but I will if necessary.

  • Tonio

    Rowen mentioned that the kids’ meals at Chick-fil-A had 
    Adventures from the Book of Virtues. I glanced at one of these and it didn’t strike me as overly Christian, but I might not have been looking hard enough.

    I agree that in practice, the verses wouldn’t be as big a deal as those books. It’s the principle that’s objectionable.  It’s the idea that they likely believe that everyone should be Christian and shouldn’t belong to any other religion. At best, the verses treat religion as a tribal identity. But then, I object to religious proselytizing in general on the grounds that one’s religious beliefs are an intensely private thing and shouldn’t be anyone else’s interest or concern.

  • Turcano

    Their Wikipedia entry is silent on the matter, so I’m guessing they don’t.  Or at least, not publicly.

  • gocart mozart

    Try conservapedia which was started by Schafley’s idiot son.  It’s an information source for those who think “facts” and “evidence” have a liberal bias.  

  • Lunch Meat

    I googled it and found some blog posts from 2005 and 2008 claiming that they donated to Republicans and to Prop 8 (which makes me sick to my stomach). However, I can’t find anything that has sources or is more recent than that. Is there a reliable site that tracks and updates this information?

  • Lunch Meat

    I googled it and found some blog posts from 2005 and 2008 claiming that they donated to Republicans and to Prop 8 (which makes me sick to my stomach). However, I can’t find anything that has sources or is more recent than that. Is there a reliable site that tracks and updates this information?

  • PJ Evans

     They have a foundation that helps abused and neglected children. Which is pretty good, IMO.

  • Lori

     

    Obviously, I completely understand and accept if people of other
    religions are bothered by it, since it’s another example of Christian
    cultural dominance. I just didn’t think it was as big a deal as other
    things.  

    FWIW, it never bothered me. Some people are Christians. As long as they’re not shoving it in my face I can deal and, as you say, you have to look for the verses or you’ll miss them completely. I don’t even remember the last time I looked at them.

    This may just be my love of the double-double talking, but I don’t think so.

  • PJ Evans

     Actually, In-N-Out is discreet about their religion. They don’t put verses on their containers, they put references to verses. I believe the drink cups have ‘John 3:16’ on the bottom, inside the rim – you actually  have to look for the references. (They also use ‘Nahum 1:7’ on a different container – I think it’s the little bag the wrapped burger comes in.)

  • Jim Roberts

    I’ve often wondered about what qualifies a person to be in those “special” yellow pages. Do they include Branch Davidians?

  • Tonio

    Also, is your alma mater a Christian college? 

  • http://dpolicar.livejournal.com/ Dave

    What I’m confused by is how everyone is acting so surprised about Chick-fil-A. It’s not like they or Hobby Lobby make a secret of their
    beliefs. Were their anti-gay beliefs really such a surprise?

    No, not at all.

    But we’re in the middle of a social transition around how socially acceptable it is to be queer, and therefore how socially acceptable it is to be anti-queer.

    And one thing that happens during such transitions is that things that used to be seen as acceptable suddenly become unacceptable, leading lots of people to either suddenly “notice” them, or suddenly have a “change of heart” about them.

    It’s very rare for people to say “I used to accept X because everyone else did, now that everyone else rejects X I reject it too.” Hell, I don’t say that even when it’s true, because it’s such a low-status thing to admit to in public. I assume it’s true of other people sometimes as well, and that they don’t say it either.

    This is doubly true for politicians.

  • Ross Thompson

    It’s very rare for people to say “I used to accept X because everyone else did, now that everyone else rejects X I reject it too.” Hell, I don’t say that even when it’s true, because it’s such a low-status thing to admit to in public. I assume it’s true of other people sometimes as well, and that they don’t say it either.

    This is doubly true for politicians.

    No, this is common for politicians; they just don’t use those exact words, but instead make it clear that their opinions are based entirely on the opinions of their constituents. To quote Rahm Emmanuel on why he’s barring Chick-Fil-A from Chicago:

    What the CEO has said as it relates to gay marriage and gay couples is not what I believe, but more importantly, it’s not what the people of Chicago believe.

    (Cite)

  • Dan Audy

    Rahm Emmanuel and Boston Mayor Thomas Menino are in the wrong.  Maybe not a moral wrong (though I think they are) but very clearly in the wrong legally by violating the First Amendment.  So long they aren’t actually violating employment laws or advocating imminent lawless activity Chick-Fil-A has the right to support, both with their words and money, any cause they want no matter how backward and stupid it is.  If cities are allowed to deny business licenses to Chick-Fil-A on the basis that their religious beliefs are outside the accepted norms and despised by the general population the exact same justification could be used to deny Halal or Kosher grocers/butchers/restaurants the ability to operate in other places dominated by anti-Muslim Rightwing Evangelicals.

    They could officially denounce Chick-Fil-A’s behaviour as being inconsistent with American values from their position of prominence without violating the First Amendment but when they start using governmental force they have crossed the line.  If Rahm Emmanuel wanted to personally buy a billboard next to a Chick-Fil-A (and he certainly could afford to) and put up an anti-Chick-Fil-A advertisement I would applaud him for his actions but government belongs to everyone, even idiotic Rightwing Evangelicals and doesn’t get to support or suppress any religion.

    I hate the fact that their stupidity is forcing me to defend Chick-Fil-A rather than denouncing them for all their awfulness.

  • Wanton_Glance

    They could officially denounce Chick-Fil-A’s behaviour as being
    inconsistent with American values from their position of prominence
    without violating the First Amendment but when they start using
    governmental force they have crossed the line.  If Rahm Emmanuel wanted
    to personally buy a billboard next to a Chick-Fil-A (and he certainly
    could afford to) and put up an anti-Chick-Fil-A advertisement I would
    applaud him for his actions but government belongs to everyone, even
    idiotic Rightwing Evangelicals and doesn’t get to support or suppress
    any religion.

    I hate the fact that their stupidity is forcing me to defend Chick-Fil-A rather than denouncing them for all their awfulness.

    Agreed. I think Menino recently retracted the threats to actually block Chick-Fil-A development, but (thankfully) he did not retract his condemnation of the restaurant’s bigotry.

    http://www.bostonherald.com/news/regional/view.bg?articleid=1061148712&srvc=news&position=recent

    I would not mind some more publicity on which causes major businesses are supporting. I moved from Boston to a Southern state a few years ago and had no knowledge of Chick-Fil-A’s donations for nearly a year.

     

  • Anonymo

    Wait, what, Hobby Lobby?  I love Hobby Lobby!  I’ve given then hundreds of dollars for model airplanes.  What’s their deal?

  • Guest

    There are two chains called Hobby Lobby, and the craft store is kind enough to put a link to the other one on their homepage – ones is Hobby Lobby International, which specializes in rockets and RC models, has a website at hobby-lobby.com, and is open on Sundays from noon to 5. As far as I know, that one is okay. The other is Hobby Lobby the craft and hobby store, which has a website at hobbylobby.com, does have a section of model kits (which is why I want to be sure we’re talking about the correct Hobby Lobby), and is always closed on Sundays. That’s the one that gives money to dominionist and “pro-family” organizations. If the one you shop at is the former, then no worries as far as I am aware. The one I confess that I shop at is the craft store, and I confess I do sometimes still go there.

  • Anonymo

    Oh!  Oh good.  Sigh of relief.  The one that’s taken my money is the good one.  Now I can relax again.

    Re: Phyllis, I suppose it’s good she’s lasted this long, because when she dies, she’s going to hell.

  • reynard61

    What?! Another modeler ?! Hot *DAMN!!!*

    Yeah, as “Guest” and “Emcee, cubed” have pointed out, Hobby Lobby (the chain) is owned and run by a Dominionist and donates to a number of Conservative and Evanglical causes.

    I shopped there for a while (and noticed the religious bent. It’s not like they try to hide it), but I noticed that a lot of their models were low-quality kits — using either pirated or old, out-of-copyright molds — from China (i.e. Zhengdefu, MiniHobbyModels); or, if brand-name (i.e. Tamiya, Revell, Academy, etc.), were about 10%-30% more expensive than what was at the HobbyTown USA just down the road.

    What utterly tore it for me was seeing a T-shirt for sale that basically said that the Bible was better reading than Shakespeare. I haven’t been back since.

  • ako

      I want to tell them, um, guys, you’ve been frequenting companies based
    on their beliefs for years now, why you mad that other people do too?

    This.  Either boycotts are morally acceptable or they aren’t.  Arguing that no one should ever select or avoid a business based on moral issues would be difficult to do, but at least it would be a consistent moral position.  If boycotts are acceptable, it’s possible to disagree with the cause, but one can’t argue that people are using illegitimate means to express their views. 

    So they either need to stop questioning the right of people to not spend money at a place that’s trying to legally enshrine bigotry, or they need to break out the Oreos and get on Google to start planning the family trip to Disneyland.

  • Lori

    Their framing is that businesses are either “neutral” on an issue or it takes a stand in the culture wars, “neutral” being Christianist code for “agrees with us”. Staying “neutral” or encouraging a company to remain “neutral” is legitimate. A business taking a stand in the culture wars or being encouraged to do so is illegitimate. Heads they win. Tails we lose.  

    I wish that I was making that up, but I’m not. If you want to see examples follow the link on Fred’s blog roll to Joe.My.God. and check out some of Joe’s posts on NOW and people like Eugene Delgado.  (Note: the actual content of the site is almost all SFW and the stuff that’s not is clearly labeled.  A number of the ads aren’t so SFW. If you’re not using a good ad blocker prepare for the ad for the jockstrap store, or whatever the heck it’s called. If you can deal with that you should be OK there.)

  • http://formerconservative.wordpress.com/ Formerconservative

    I don’t really do boycotts, but I am boycotting Chick fil A.  I have been for about a year or so.  The reason is not so much what they said, but the causes they donate to.  I don’t want to give them more money for them to pass on to Focus on the Family or Exodus International.  If I buy a sandwich from them, I feel like a portion of that money may go to one of those causes and I can’t handle that.

  • http://twitter.com/FearlessSon FearlessSon

    Now there’s an article going around on Facebook about “do we want to be a country where people choose not to frequent stores because of their beliefs” and, well, first of all, yes, that sounds good, that sounds, dare I say it, free-market-y; and secondly, it’s like they’re unaware of those phone books you can get (“Christian Yellow Pages”) that explicitly only list Christian-owned companies, and I mean like plumbers and accountants, not national fast food and craft chains. I want to tell them, um, guys, you’ve been frequenting companies based on their beliefs for years now, why you mad that other people do too? 

    It reminds me of a kind of mentality that has been going around the country lately by already-successful business owners that they have a right to make a profit.  And somehow, people choosing not to patronize their business because of something that they said or some practice they are doing seems to them like a violation of that “right”.  Heck, I would see anonymous Super PAC donations as an extension of this.  They can buy politicians to lobby for greater profit for themselves at the expense of the market and consumers, and they want to avoid having this disclosed because that might trample their “right” of profit.  

  • http://www.facebook.com/chrisalgoo Chris Algoo

    When some people get their hands on the capital-T Truth, they lose their ability to tell the regular old truth.

  • Nathaniel

    Given what Fred has posted here over the years, I imagine a useful but short list would be naming what right wing Christians aren’t Liars for Jesus. 

  • Guest

    Yes – it’s Indiana Wesleyan University. Which I don’t remember being nearly as messed up when I was there.

    Sorry for the derail, I just saw the mention of Chick-fil-A and needed to express some things about it.

  • Rowen

     We had a Chic-Fil-A on campus at the University of Houston . . .

    And there’s one that’s hidden in the bowels of NYU.

  • Rowen

     We had a Chic-Fil-A on campus at the University of Houston . . .

    And there’s one that’s hidden in the bowels of NYU.

  • http://formerconservative.wordpress.com/ Formerconservative

    Since we are talking about Chick-fil-A.   A number of people have declared August 1st to be Chick-fil-A appreciation day.   

    I, on the other hand, am celebrating Zaxby’s Appreciation Day:  http://www.facebook.com/events/225034374285178/

  • http://jamoche.dreamwidth.org/ Jamoche

    On Aug 1 I’ll go to McDonalds and appreciate their Southern Style Chicken Sandwich.

  • Isabel C.

    …wait, Schafly’s still alive?

    It seems like idiotic right-wingers live a scarily long time: her, Thurmond, Helms. I realize that it’s probably just that they’re more annoying and thus more visible, but damn.  

  • JustoneK

    They tend to be privileged enough to have access to the things that prolong life and quality of life, so, yeah.

  • http://twitter.com/FearlessSon FearlessSon

    …wait, Schafly’s still alive?

    It seems like idiotic right-wingers live a scarily long time: her, Thurmond, Helms. I realize that it’s probably just that they’re more annoying and thus more visible, but damn.

    It would not surprise if it turns out that Schafly has sustained her life and misogynist vigor unnaturally by feeding on blood from the jugular veins of single mothers.

  • Isabel C.

    …I am adding this to my theoretical eightiespunk book, thank you. ;)

  • Nequam

    Aside – I wasn’t surprised to see Mike Huckabee supporting Chick-fil-A.

    Santorum’s put in his oar too.

    I don’t know about you, but I don’t particularly want a frothy layer of santorum on any of my sandwiches.

  • http://loosviews.livejournal.com BringTheNoise

    I don’t know about you, but I don’t particularly want a frothy layer of santorum on any of my sandwiches.

    Eugh! Some of us were planning to eat this decade!

  • Laertesweb

    That cemetery with the crosses, in Europe? Does anyone know where it is or what it’s called?

  • http://www.blogger.com/home?pli=1 Coleslaw

    I think it’s Flanders Field, because the Cheney story refers to it and cites the beginning of the poem. Anyway, similar pics of Flanders Field can be found through Google.

  • cjmr

    Most likely the one in the poem Fred mentioned–at Flanders Fields.  But there are many.

  • http://bouteillebleu.livejournal.com/ Bouteillebleu

     It’s the Luxembourg American Cemetery – http://www.abmc.gov/cemeteries/cemeteries/lx.php.

  • Lori

    It looks like it may be the American cemetery at Normandy.

    ETA: I stand corrected. I had the right general idea, but the wrong specific location. It’s nice to have access to the hive mind for things like this.

  • Makabit

    I believe that’s the Normandy American Cemetery. In Normandy, of course. Most, although not all, of the dead, were killed in the Normandy landing.

  • Lori

    Or, in other words, Phyllis Schlafly is a liar who doesn’t know what
    Arlington National Cemetery looks like but enjoys denouncing the
    patriotism of America-hating liberals who refuse to accept the picture
    of it she has in her head. 

    I’ve told the story before so I won’t bore people with it again, but Phyllis Schlafly was literally the first public figure who ever totally pissed me off. I was in high school at the time and my utter disgust at what a lying, hypocritical nightmare she was helped cement my aversion to the brand of Conservatism of which she is such a fine example. I try not to hate people but with Phyllis is been a losing battle.

    And here she is, 3 decades on still as horrible as ever. I guess at least I can feel justified in my teenage loathing. Whatever else I got wrong, I had Phyll’s number because she’s still a lying hypocrite. She’s bashing Liberals for supposedly being unpatriotic. Well, here’s a newsflash for her—-she either hasn’t been to Arlington, wasn’t paying any attention when she was there, or doesn’t care enough about the place not to lie about it, but I have and I do. For complex reasons I won’t go into (but which are not about having overly romantic notions about war and/or the military) I feel at Arlington the way other people say they feel in church. That place matters to me. Phyllis Schlafly and her nasty bunch of bigoted cohorts don’t have exclusive  ownership of Arlington. I’m a Liberal ant it belongs to me too. More actually since, as I said, I’ve been there, I remember it and I care about it.

    In short Phyllis Schlafly needs the same thing she’s needed for decades—to shut her pie hole.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Sally Ride posthumously comes out – Interesting considering the note about social transition.

  • Frenchroast

    I know the American cemetery in Normandy has crosses/stars of David as depicted in the picture. I think it’s pretty standard at most American cemeteries in Europe.

  • Emcee, cubed

    To quote Rahm Emmanuel on why he’s barring Chick-Fil-A from Chicago

    I have stayed away from Chick-Fil-A for a couple of years now, even before I moved to a state that doesn’t have any. I do, in fact, like their food, but giving to organizations that are set up for no other reason than to harm me and mine is something I cannot personally support. (To make it clear, there is no reason to give money to organizations like Exodus International and National Organization for Marriage other than being anti-gay. These are not groups that do some good work, but don’t happen to include QUILTBAG people. The only work they do is to keep or take rights away from QUILTBAG people or actively harm and abuse QUILTBAG people. Note: Exodus has recently changed its focus, and may be becoming less of an abusive organization. This was not the case when Chick-Fil-A was giving them money.)

    But I have a serious problem with government officials using the power of the state to keep out businesses who donate to causes they don’t like. If they were not serving QUILTBAG customers, or not hiring and/or firing QUILTBAG employees, that would be different. (And I know there are a lot of questions about racism in their hiring, but I don’t know of any actual discrimination cases brought against them – and without that, or a lot more samples than my personal experience, it all seems too anecdotal to justify government sanctions.) But just donating money to anti-gay causes? Where does that stop? Could a mayor who isn’t sympathetic keep out companies who donate to GLAAD or the ACLU because they don’t like who they donate to? Now, the mayors have a right to express their opinions – the letter sent by Boston’s mayor itself doesn’t do anything wrong, and I applaud him for sending it. But other public comments he has made about denying or holding up permits, and other actions related to keeping Chick-Fil-A from opening a store seems awfully unconstitutional and discriminatory to me. And it will just add to the “oh, we are so persecuted” narrative they like to espouse so often. And in this case, it would be justified.

  • Emcee, cubed

    To quote Rahm Emmanuel on why he’s barring Chick-Fil-A from Chicago

    I have stayed away from Chick-Fil-A for a couple of years now, even before I moved to a state that doesn’t have any. I do, in fact, like their food, but giving to organizations that are set up for no other reason than to harm me and mine is something I cannot personally support. (To make it clear, there is no reason to give money to organizations like Exodus International and National Organization for Marriage other than being anti-gay. These are not groups that do some good work, but don’t happen to include QUILTBAG people. The only work they do is to keep or take rights away from QUILTBAG people or actively harm and abuse QUILTBAG people. Note: Exodus has recently changed its focus, and may be becoming less of an abusive organization. This was not the case when Chick-Fil-A was giving them money.)

    But I have a serious problem with government officials using the power of the state to keep out businesses who donate to causes they don’t like. If they were not serving QUILTBAG customers, or not hiring and/or firing QUILTBAG employees, that would be different. (And I know there are a lot of questions about racism in their hiring, but I don’t know of any actual discrimination cases brought against them – and without that, or a lot more samples than my personal experience, it all seems too anecdotal to justify government sanctions.) But just donating money to anti-gay causes? Where does that stop? Could a mayor who isn’t sympathetic keep out companies who donate to GLAAD or the ACLU because they don’t like who they donate to? Now, the mayors have a right to express their opinions – the letter sent by Boston’s mayor itself doesn’t do anything wrong, and I applaud him for sending it. But other public comments he has made about denying or holding up permits, and other actions related to keeping Chick-Fil-A from opening a store seems awfully unconstitutional and discriminatory to me. And it will just add to the “oh, we are so persecuted” narrative they like to espouse so often. And in this case, it would be justified.

  • ReverendRef

    Re: the Chik-fil-A/Mr. Cathy dust-up — 

    I don’t think it’s a surprise that Chick-fil-A or Mr. Cathy came out publicly as pro-hetero marriage/anti-gay marriage.  That’s probably to be expected given their track record.  I think the surprise (for me, anyway) was that the Jim Henson Company made a public statement to sever their ties with C-f-A and donate all money to date that had been received from C-f-A profits to GLAAD.

    A lot of these “culture wars” are fought in the corporate world; i.e. we’re behind whatever increases our bottom line.  So maybe JHC and Target coming out and supporting equal rights will help drive the overall acceptance of “those people” to simply being people.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Charity-Brighton/100002974813787 Charity Brighton

     It might work the other way too. Increased societal approval of equal rights makes it easier for corporations to take a stand in favor of equality.

  • ReverendRef

     Also true.  But this is sort of a chicken-egg thing.

    Do companies support agendas because of increased societal approval, or does society increase it’s approval of an agenda because mainstream corporations approve of it?

    Not sure what the answer is there; and being an Episcopalian, I want my answer to be, “Yes.”  I suppose that it really doesn’t matter which comes first as long as the end result is a more equal and just society overall.

  • Jim Roberts

    And ultimately the answer is probably, “Yes.” It’s a bit like raising a yeast dough – is the action of the yeast fermentation that causes the dough to rise or is it the elasticity of the proteins? Well, you need both.

  • Emcee, cubed

     One thing I see a lot of Chick-Fil-A supporters saying is something like, “They don’t hate gay people, they just support traditional marriage. What’s wrong with that?” Setting aside the rather obvious point, Exodus International does nothing to “support traditional marriage”. That is not part of their mission. So that idea really falls apart. It isn’t all about marriage. It’s about wanting gay people to not exist.

    (I suppose there is a argument that since Exodus pushes QUILTBAG people to marry people of the opposite gender to “prove” that their conversion to being heterosexual is complete somehow “supports traditional marriage”. It isn’t a good argument, but I suppose it is there.)

  • Tonio

    I’ve never heard a truly rational argument for how legalizing SSM would undermine traditional marriage. Most of the ones I’ve heard fall into two categories. One  has “traditional” meaning spousal roles in marriage that are sexist and hierarchical. The other rests on the assumption that marriage is for procreation, and legalization of SSM would allegedly encourage young people to have children without being married. These tend to be the folks whose worries about single motherhood conveniently focus on women who choose to raise children without fathers, whether these are single straight women or lesbian couples.

  • http://dpolicar.livejournal.com/ Dave

    I’ve never heard a truly rational argument for how legalizing SSM would undermine traditional marriage.

    Well, truly rational arguments for social norms are rare.

    But the closest I’ve come to mapping the anti-SSM position to something cogent that I can understand is that queers are a low-status group, and if relationships among low-status groups are treated as equivalent to analogous relationships among high-status groups, then the high-status group lowers status.  (This is of course similar to the argument against legalizing marriages across racial boundaries.)

    This is not a position I can actually sympathize with; my reaction to it is roughly “Yeah, well, fuck you too.” It doesn’t help that nobody will actually say this out loud, because talking explicitly about social status is, well, gauche.

    But leaving my lack of sympathy aside,  I can sort of understand it. And it’s rational enough as far as it goes… they have a superior position and want to hold on to it because it provides them with benefits. It’s selfish, certainly, but selfishness is not necessarily irrational.

    I expect that once it becomes clear that the law will change,  such people reassure themselves that whatever their legal status, SSMs lack the social status of OSMs (aka “aren’t really marriages”).

  • Tonio

    And it’s rational enough as far as it goes… they have a superior position and want to hold on to it because it provides them with benefits. It’s selfish, certainly, but selfishness is not necessarily irrational.

    I was using rational to mean that Social Norm A can be defended as providing  a broader benefit to everyone in society than having Social Norm B. Every social norm should have that type of argument behind it, otherwise it’s simply a rule for rule’s sake.  Outside of science, I’ve never heard a good definition of “normal” that didn’t translate to “Being different is bad.”  

    What you describe is exactly the problem with the social norm that opposes homosexuality. It protects the status of straights at the expense of everyone else, and because it’s part of a larger social norm of a gender hierarchy, it protects the status of men at the expense of women. You’re right that selfishness is not necessarily irrational. I would say that many of the supporting arguments used by the homophobes are irrational. 

  • http://dpolicar.livejournal.com/ Dave

     

    I was using rational to mean that Social Norm A can be defended as
    providing  a broader benefit to everyone in society than having Social
    Norm B.

    Ah, I see.

    Using the word in that sense, the only rational argument I know of for opposing the legalization of same-sex marriages is that legal recognition of any marriage is not as broadly beneficial as providing to everyone the benefits we currently only provide to married partners.

    I agree that discussions of what’s “normal” often turn out to imply moral judgments, and that heteronormative social norms provide benefits to people who conform to them (“straights”) at the expense of everyone else, and that the same kinds of status mechanisms operate wrt gender and various other things, and that many supporting arguments used to oppose marriage equality are irrational in both your sense and mine.

  • Matri

    It isn’t a good argument, but I suppose it is there.

    If these people had any good arguments, this blog would never have existed.

  • Jim Roberts

    Whenever someone tells me that an organization “supports traditional marriage,” I , a hetero white guy married with kids, have been known to ask, “Great! Can you watch the kids while my wife does the shopping?”

    I’ve yet to have any such organization take me up on my request.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    There used to be a place around here called The Pantry that had more locations than they do now, and I recall being surprised at the Christian-themed material (little pamphlets at the front, also, placemats with Bible quotes etc).

  • Kiba

    I saw this last night (OK actually early this morning) just before I tottered off to sleep: 
    http://media.zenfs.com/en/blogs/thelookout/chick-fil-a-letter-boston.jpg

    It’s a letter from the Mayor of Boston to Mr. Cathy telling him that his food chain isn’t welcome there.

  • LL

    I am honestly kinda surprised to hear that that crazy old crone is still alive. I guess the faux outrage is what sustains her.

  • http://www.nicolejleboeuf.com/index.php Nicole J. LeBoeuf-Little

    I am honestly kinda surprised to hear that that crazy old crone is still alive. I guess the faux outrage is what sustains her.

    Stop this crap.

    Schafly’s a jerk, and her rhetoric causes harm, but this has nothing to do with her being old, or a woman, or the unfounded claims of her being mentally ill.

    Using sexist, ageist, and ableist language to criticize her hurts women, the elderly, and the mentally ill, who already have enough stigma and hatred leveled at them in society without you — their supposed ally — piling it on by conflating her with them.

    Also, it makes you a jerk. Stop being a jerk.

  • gocart mozart

    Although the restaurants are closed on Sundays, they don’t engage in obvious proselytizing unlike In-n-Out, which puts Biblical verses on its containers. (Ironic considering the suggestive nature of the name, like the puritanical Amish living in towns named Intercourse and Virginville.)

    I am reminded of this quote:

    Alex: And the first thing that flashed into my gulliver was that I’d like to have her right down there on the floor with the old in-out, real savage.http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0066921/quotes

  • Emcee, cubed

    I only even heard of Hobby Lobby when I moved to NV a year and a half ago, and now have one down the street from me. I was looking for something rather non-specific at the time, so wandered in. I was immediately struck by all the religious stuff they carry. It actually made me a touch uncomfortable. (I didn’t find anything for what I was doing, so didn’t buy anything. It was much later that I think someone on here mentioned them, and I had an “AHA! That explains everything!” moment. Luckily, there’s a Michael’s a block closer, so I have that option if I need something…

  • Jenora Feuer

    I find some vague amusement that the Americans’ ideal of a military cemetery is based on non-American works: not only is Flanders Fields in Belgium, but the poem in question was written by a Canadian.

  • Tonio

    Very true. And I’ve long found it hilarious that classic American cookout foods include hot dogs (German), hamburgers (ditto) and french fries (Belgian or British, depending on who you talk to).

  • Tonio

    Very true. And I’ve long found it hilarious that classic American cookout foods include hot dogs (German), hamburgers (ditto) and french fries (Belgian or British, depending on who you talk to).

  • http://deird1.dreamwidth.org Deird

    Apparently Chick-Fil-A is claiming that the muppet toys are safety hazards.

    Meanwhile, the thing that irritates me in this whole debacle is that, with all the videos suddenly floating round the web, I’ve finally found out how you pronounce Chick-Fil-A, and it’s not how I thought it sounded!

  • Wingedwyrm

    …  There are not enough faces and corresponding palms in the world.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Actually, how DO you say it? /Canadian who’s always wondered.

  • CathyW8

    “chick fill LAY” – as though it were spelled “filet”, American pronunciation. 

    They didn’t have them in my area, but I’d seen billboards as I drove through other parts of the country, and so until I was in my 30s I thought it was “chick FILL uh”, and wondered what that was supposed to mean…

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Jesus. That is totally not how I imagined it was pronounced! The more you know…

    :-P

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

     For like decades, my mother persisted in saying it “Chick-a-flick”.  Then she’d try to actually say it properly, find herself unable, and get angry.

  • http://deird1.dreamwidth.org Deird

     “chick fill LAY” – as though it were spelled “filet”, American pronunciation.

    Oh, is THAT the connection?

    Despite being aware of how Americans pronounce “filet”, the Aussie pronunciation (“fillet”, with a hard t) is so ingrained in my brain that I couldn’t hear how similar Chick-Fil-A’s name was.

  • Jenora Feuer

    So, in other words, it’s another example of ‘See how clever I am?’ naming.

  • reynard61

    I’m going to start calling it “Jack Chick-fil-A”.

  • Tonio

    Heh! The first time I saw the logo, I didn’t recognize the final letter as an A, and it looked like “Chick Flix.”

  • Ross Thompson

     

    “chick fill LAY” – as though it were spelled “filet”, American pronunciation.

    As a Briton living in America, that bugs me. In Britain “filet” is anglicised (final T pronounced), but in America, it’s pronounced the French way (final T silent).

    And by comparison, “tourniquet” is the other way around; pronounced as if it’s an English word in Britain, but French in America.

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    I see my first question has been asked and answered already:

    “chick fill LAY” – as though it were spelled “filet”, American pronunciation.

    Thanks. But now I’m feeling foolish, cos I’ve heard people pronounce “filet” as “fillay” a couple of times, and I thought they were doing that thing where we say we’re shopping at Tarjay. Didn’t realise that was the actual pronunciation. Huh.

  • Lori

    Like Chick Fillet. That is, fillet the American way, with the T silent.

    When I moved to South Carolina a friend rode with me to keep me company in the car and for a last chance to hang out before a long separation. That was the first that either of us has ever seen a Chick-Fil-A because at the time they were still only in the south.  It took us a while to catch on and until we did we came up with some weirdly creative possibilities. Chick fill uh? Chick fill a what?

  • Makabit

    I’ve been saying “Chick-Fill-Uh”.

    The news informs me it is really pronounced ‘Chick-Filet’

  • http://deird1.dreamwidth.org Deird

    Apparently Chick-Fil-A is claiming that the muppet toys are safety hazards.

    Meanwhile, the thing that irritates me in this whole debacle is that, with all the videos suddenly floating round the web, I’ve finally found out how you pronounce Chick-Fil-A, and it’s not how I thought it sounded!

  • http://www.nicolejleboeuf.com/index.php Nicole J. LeBoeuf-Little

    The dominionist Hobby Lobby can be recognized by the overt placard on the entry way that says “WE ARE CLOSED ON SUNDAYS TO GIVE OUR EMPLOYEES TIME WITH THEIR FAMILIES ON THE SABBATH” (paraphrased). I always feel icky walking past this plaque; it seems to imply that they’d be hostile to employees who considered the Sabbath to be Saturday.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    My wife points out that there are small crosses engraved on many of the headstones.

    We all know that’s not what Phyllis Schlafly was talking about, but I thought I should point it out.

  • CathyW8

    Yes, this is definitely one of those places where the “free exercise” part of the First Amendment trumps all – because each of those crosses is there at the request of an individual soldier’s family, and makes no statement on the government’s part beyond “we acknowledge that this deceased soldier practiced a religion”. Same deal with the last tempest-in-a-teacup about military cemeteries, regarding outside groups that wanted to pray at the gravesides of all soldiers: a military funeral should have exactly the religious observance requested by the soldier’s family members, no more, no less, no different. My one gripe is that some soldiers who practice non-mainstream religions have had trouble getting their symbols approved for tombstone inscriptions.

  • Lori

     

    My one gripe is that some soldiers who practice non-mainstream religions
    have had trouble getting their symbols approved for tombstone
    inscriptions.  

    They have gotten a lot better about this though. It’s one of the bits of progress I think they deserve credit for. It used to be impossible or nearly so to get anything but the big 3 (by US standards) acknowledged. Now there are 2 or 3 dozen marker carvings that are totally standard. All you have to do to get one is check a box on a form.

  • PJ Evans

    I had heard about CFA’s donations to conservative political groups , but not about their anti-gay attitudes. I was already planning to not eat there.

  • OriginalExtraCrispy

    I would say I’d boycott Chik-Fil-A, but I haven’t even eaten there for probably close to 20 years, and even then, probably only a couple of times. 

    And yes, there’s probably a certain amount of amusement warranted that someone with my username doesn’t eat at a popular chicken chain.

  • Nomuse

    I also can’t help but wonder if any of those writers have been to Arlington.  The real one.  The things that stand out for me most are the extensive trees that shade so much of it, the overcast that seems to be the default weather in that area (making those sunny lovely days treasured rare moments), and the surprising rise in the ground.  It ain’t West Virginia, but “gently rolling” is not the word for the bulk of the park.  At least, those are my memories from several visits over the years and a grandfather interred there.

  • http://guy-who-reads.blogspot.com/ Mike Timonin

    As a Canadian transplant to the east coast, I must say that I’m utterly baffled by the appeal of In -n- Out. We ate at one outside of San Francisco a couple years ago. The restaurant was mobbed with people, so obviously a popular place indeed, but the burgers were not exceptional and the fries were downright bad.  Fellow east-coasters suggested that the appeal was a combination of nostalgia and insider knowledge of how to tweak the menu – does anyone else have thoughts on the matter?

  • Lori

    Their standard fries are bad. I have no idea why they’re the company’s standard because I’ve only met one person who actively likes them. IMO they taste better if they’re cooked longer so they’re not so limp. I usually got them “light well” or “well”.

    IMO In-N-Out’s meat tends to taste better than a lot of other fast food burger places. At least in the LA area they grind their own and the plant is really close by, so the meat is always fresh instead of starting it’s journey to your tray or bag as a frozen little hockey puck thing.

    The menu tweaking probably refers to the various ways that you can modify the stuff you get on the burger. People refer to them as secret menu items, but I never saw the point. Asking for grilled onions or an extra beef patty is not my idea of a secret. I think some people just like to say “animal style”.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/In-N-Out_Burger_products#Secret_menu_variations

  • http://guy-who-reads.blogspot.com/ Mike Timonin


    IMO they [the fries] taste better if they’re cooked longer so they’re not so limp. I usually got them “light well” or “well”.
     

    Surely this qualifies as “menu tweaking”?

  • Lori

    Yes, but when most people talk about menu tweaking they’re talking about the changes they request for the burgers, not the fries.

    Actually, now that I think about it I’m not sure how much of a tweak it counts as when the company itself tells you that you can change how long they cook the fries and tells you what to call how much longer (or less) you want them cooked. Do you consider it menu tweaking if a steak place defaults to medium, but will cook your steak any other doneness you want if you just ask them to?

  • Tonio

    While I’ve never been to an In-n-Out, I had the impression they were more like Fuddrucker’s or Red Robin or Five Guys than like McDonald’s or Burger King. I’ve heard West Coast transplants sneer at Five Guys and inordinately praise In-n-Out.

  • Mark Z.

    The exact opposite.

    As hamburgers go, I think we can talk about a “restaurant – fast food” axis.

    The fast food burger:- a grilled or broiled beef patty, optionally with cheese.- standard toppings: lettuce, tomato, pickles, onions, ketchup, mayo, mustard.- an unadorned white-bread or potato-bread bun.- accompanied with fries.- served in a paper wrapper or box.- prices in the $1-$4 range.

    The chain restaurant burger:
    – more menu options: usually a basic burger, a chicken sandwich, a tuna melt, probably a bacon burger with barbecue sauce, maybe a veggie burger, occasionally a pulled pork sandwich.
    – a sophisticated bun: sesame seeds or other topping, unconventional types of bread like whole wheat or sourdough.
     – fries are always available, but are usually steak fries, and other side dishes can be substituted (green salad, fruit salad, and onion rings are common).
    – served on a plate, with one of those toothpicks with the little flags to hold the burger together.
    – prices in the $5-$10 range.

    So Red Robin, Fuddruckers, and their ilk are definitely toward the restaurant end. Somewhere in the middle are Jack In The Box and Carl’s Jr. McDonald’s and Burger King are further toward the fast food end but have been steadily moving away over the last twenty years.

    In-N-Out is all the way at the fast food end, along with White Castle (though their product is quite different). The basic burger, fries, and soft drinks are literally the entire menu. It’s very minimalist, and if you like that sort of thing, then it’s the sort of thing you’ll like.

    (Of course you understand that some of the sneering at Five Guys is really directed at the existence of places other than the West Coast, and people with the bad taste to live in those places, God help them. Having looked up Five Guys, another likely source of sneering is that the visual design of the restaurants looks very much like In-N-Out, which naturally leads to a sense of competition between them. Plus, what Ursula L said about local chains–we’re inordinately proud of In-N-Out, and, in the San Francisco area, even prouder of Nation’s Giant Burger, because it’s ours.)

  • http://formerconservative.wordpress.com/ Formerconservative

    We don’t have In-N-Out here, but Five Guys is delicious.

  • Tonio

    Five Guys doesn’t seem to belong in either category, and from your description, neither would In-n-Out or White Castle. True fast-food establishments are geared not just to getting the food to you as quickly as possible, but also to getting you out of there quickly as well. Michael Palin made the latter observation on on his first trip to McDonald’s, with the seats being uncomfortable enough to discourage leisurely dining.

    My real line of demarcation is whether the establishment has a drive-through. McDonald’s and Burger King can diversify their menus all they want, but as long as the items are designed to be delivered as quickly as possible, the quality is going to suffer. At a couple of fast-food places that shall remain nameless, I noticed
    that the meat tasted pre-cooked and microwaved, which is hamburger
    heresy.

  • PJ Evans

    The basic burger, fries, and soft drinks are literally the entire menu.
    And the drinnks.
    Basically, the only part of the menus that’s changed since In-n-Out first opened is the addition of diet soft drinks, and the item prices. (Now they include nutritional information also.)
    Try their pink lemonade….

  • Lori

    I’d say they’re similar to Five Guys, which I also liked.

  • Ursula L

    As a Canadian transplant to the east coast, I must say that I’m utterly baffled by the appeal of In -n- Out. We ate at one outside of San Francisco a couple years ago. The restaurant was mobbed with people, so obviously a popular place indeed, but the burgers were not exceptional and the fries were downright bad.  Fellow east-coasters suggested that the appeal was a combination of nostalgia and insider knowledge of how to tweak the menu – does anyone else have thoughts on the matter? 

    In general, I think people tend to like local chain businesses.  

    A local business with a single location can become a favorite, but since it is just one location, it takes up a smaller piece of your sense of location.  Big regional and national chains are everywhere, so they don’t really evoke a sense of place or “home” either.

    But a local chain becomes part of the landscape.  Always nearby when you’re home, and a noticeable absence when you’re away. 

    Bill Grey’s.  Abbot’s Custard.  Wegmans. Ted’s Hot Dogs.  Anderson’s Roast Beef.  I’ve lived my life in Rochester and Buffalo NY, and places like these are part of the landscape.  Some are excellent by any standard, while others, I suppose, are a taste that is comfort food when it’s your local version, but unremarkable to someone who didn’t grow up with it.  

  • Emcee, cubed

    Yeah, the fries at In-N-Out are terrible. It is honestly why I don’t go any more. The burgers are good, but not good enough for me to endure the fries. (And fries are important to me, have been since I was a kid. I can make a whole meal of just having fries. Don’t judge me.)

  • Emcee, cubed

    While I’ve never been to an In-n-Out, I had the impression they were
    more like Fuddrucker’s or Red Robin or Five Guys than like McDonald’s or
    Burger King. I’ve heard West Coast transplants sneer at Five Guys and
    inordinately praise In-n-Out.

    I think In-N-Out is above McD’s or BK, but certainly closer to that style than Fuddrucker’s, Red Robin or even 5 Guys. (though maybe closer to 5 Guys. But 5 Guys has the best fries EVER. So…see above comment.)

  • http://guy-who-reads.blogspot.com/ Mike Timonin

    Emcee, cubed: I was going to disagree about your classification, but now that I think about it, yeah, 5 Guys as a restaurant is closer in style to In-N-Out than to Red Robin or Foddrucker’s – order at the window, and then sit or don’t sit, as opposed to sit and wait for a waitron to serve you. But, closer only by degree – I think the product from 5 Guys is superior. Thicker patties, better toppings.

    Ursula L – we are contemplating a relocation from Binghamton to Buffalo – any suggestions as to networks of non-profit employers?

  • Dr. Rocketscience

    Sure, at nearly twice the price. That’s my biggest issue with 5 Guys. Yeah, it’s a good burger, comparable to In-N-Out. But, whereas a Double Double, fries, and medium drink will cost a little under $6 ( 
    http://www.ocregister.com/articles/prices-297781-costs-year.html ), a 5 Guys full size burger, fries and regular drink (a near identical meal, calorie-wise) costs about $10.50 (
    http://gofiveguys.com/Order/Order.aspx?VendorId=1324 ). nd that’s a So California $6 compared to a No Colorado $11.

    SmashBurger has the same issue for me: great burger, but way over burger joint prices, when In-N-Out is your standard.

  • http://guy-who-reads.blogspot.com/ Mike Timonin

    Ahhh, but I never buy the full sized burger, because the small is as much as I can handle at a single sitting – and I always split the fries, because I’m no longer a 15 year old boy. So that comes to $8.50, but splitting the fries, call it $7. Which is about even, really.

  • Dr. Rocketscience

    But if you split the one meal, you should split the other, to make the comparison valid, no? So, single cheeseburger and 1/2 order of fries from In-N-Out comes to $4.30. About the same as the larger meals, proportionally speaking ($1.75/$1 versus $1.63/$1), though the Five guys meal does provide more calories.

    Yes, I did do the math. Shut up. :-P

  • http://guy-who-reads.blogspot.com/ Mike Timonin

    Except that splitting  In-N-Out fries would not satisfy in the same way. 

    I think this is one of those things that is impossible to satisfy objectively.  I consider the superiority of 5 Guys product to be worth the extra cost, and you do not consider the 5 Guys product to be superior. I think we would need an outside adjudicator – someone who has experienced neither burger.

  • Lori

    Are there Fuddrucker’s with table service? At ours you ordered & picked up at the counter.

  • Ursula L

    Ursula L – we are contemplating a relocation from Binghamton to Buffalo – any suggestions as to networks of non-profit employers? 

    Alas, I can offer no suggestions as to networks of non-profit employers. 

    If you’re in the area and looking for food, however, I can, with confidence, suggest Bill Rapaport’s restaurant guide.  http://www.cse.buffalo.edu/restaurant.guide/  He reviews restaurants, and anyone can e-mail him with their report of any local restaurant.  The project started as a printed list of suggested restaurants at an academic conference, and has grown geekily out of hand.  (Any reviews with a star or a minus-sign reflect Rapaport’s opinion, while everyone else’s contributions are posted but not assigned a star level. So an absence of stars/minus-signs merely means that the fellow running the site hasn’t been there yet.) 

  • PJ Evans

     I went to Fuddrucker’s once. It was like eating in a stamping plant: very loud, very noisy. And the burgers weren’t that special.
    The fries at In-n-Out are inconsistent, but that’s because they aren’t precut and frozen, like the ones at most chains. (They come as bags of potatoes. I’ve seen their delivery trucks.)

  • Lunch Meat

    Personally, I am in love with In-n-Out fries. Their meat is good and the bread tastes like actual bread, but the fries are my favorite.

  • Lori

    You’re the other person who likes their fries. I knew there had to be more than one :)

  • Lunch Meat

    In-n-Out chops their potatoes in front of you. That’s amazed me ever since I was a kid (I was inordinately fascinated by moving things when I was a kid, and they have a pretty cool potato-chopper-thingy).

  • Lori

    The problem is that after they chop the potatoes they don’t soak out the excess starch and then they don’t cook them long enough so they’re limp. Fries should be crispy on the outside and sort of fluffy on the inside. They should not flop over when you pick them up.

  • http://guy-who-reads.blogspot.com/ Mike Timonin

    My objection to the In-N-Out fries was not that they were floppy. Rather, they had no flavor – they were like styrofoam. They were like deep fried communion wafers. 

  • Lori

    I think the floppyness and the tastelessness go together though. When they’re cooked a little more to me it improves the taste as well as the texture. I’m not sure why that’s true. 

  • http://guy-who-reads.blogspot.com/ Mike Timonin


    I think the floppyness and the tastelessness go together though. When they’re cooked a little more to me it improves the taste as well as the texture. I’m not sure why that’s true.

    Could be. Next time I’m over there on the Left Coast, I’ll have to get myself a native guide to take me to an In-N-Out properly.

  • http://twitter.com/FearlessSon FearlessSon

    A few weeks ago, I was on a two-week long road trip from Seattle to Minneapolis, then from Minneapolis to San Diego.  I and a roommate were accompanying my SO to help her run her vendor booth at a couple of conventions.  On our way back from San Diego to Seattle, we stopped at an A&W chain for lunch in some small town in the California mountains.  

    Stepping inside, we were met with an otherworldly chill as we realized that the place was papered with revival-tent style trappings.  Most of it was of a Messianic Jewish bent, talking about Jews coming to Christ and all that.  My SO, who is a reformed Jew, did not care for it.  We all felt a little uncomfortable eating there, but there was no obvious elsewhere to go in that town for a sit-down meal.  

    We ate quietly and left quickly.  

  • BaseDeltaZero

    What I’m confused by is how everyone is acting so surprised about Chick-fil-A. 

    That some people at Chick-fil-A have anti-gay opinions isn’t surprising.  Or, really, any of my business.  I want them to provide chicken, not agree with everything I believe.  That they decided they’d go out and make a crusade of it is a problem…

    No, this is common for politicians; they just don’t use those exact words, but instead make it clear that their opinions are based entirely on the opinions of their constituents. To quote Rahm Emmanuel on why he’s barring Chick-Fil-A from Chicago:

    Also, this is kinda-sorta what politicians are supposed to do.

    Very true. And I’ve long found it hilarious that classic American cookout foods include hot dogs (German), hamburgers (ditto) and french fries (Belgian or British, depending on who you talk to).

    Nation of immigrants and all.  We wiped out anything that might be considered originally ‘American’.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    That some people at Chick-fil-A have anti-gay opinions isn’t surprising.  Or, really, any of my business.  I want them to provide chicken, not agree with everything I believe.  That they decided they’d go out and make a crusade of itis a problem…

    Pretty much. When I knew that they were a company whose leadership was homophobic, I didn’t like that, but that was not itself a reason to avoid them. 

    Now, I know that if I give them my money, they will use that money to fund attempts to deprive people of their rights. I don’t want them to have money to do that, so I am not going to give them any of mine. 

  • Tonio

    I say they have no business even believing that everyone should be straight, or that legal marriage should be limited to straight couples. That’s no different in principle from me deciding who Fred or you or any other individual should marry. The only opinion they’re justified in having on marriage is who they themselves as individuals should and shouldn’t marry.

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    I say they have no business even believing that everyone should be straight, or that legal marriage should be limited to straight couples. That’s no different in principle from me deciding who Fred or you or any other individual should marry. The only opinion they’re justified in having on marriage is who they themselves as individuals should and shouldn’t marry.

    I don’t agree with you on this. I think same-sex couples definitely should be able to marry, but not because I think marriage is something that society has no right to set boundaries around.

    For example, I don’t support the idea that a child should be able to get married (whether to an adult or another child), even though one could argue that what happens to a child I don’t know is none of my business.

    This is where the US usage of “liberal” confuses things. From what you’ve written on a bunch of topics, it seems to me that you might be a real liberal in the international understanding–holding the view that you have no right to have an opinion on anything that doesn’t directly affect you. (Correct me if I’ve read you wrong). I’m definitely not a liberal; I’m progressive left. We agree in practice on a lot of things, but often come from a different premise.

    If you’re not in the mood for this conversation, feel free not to carry it on, but if you are–do you object to child marriage? If so, on what grounds?

  • Tonio

    While society can set boundaries for marriage, the boundaries should be grounded in the moral principles involving harm. I object to child marriage because it’a a form of harm to people who aren’t yet capable of informed consent. (I also recognize that in many cultures, families choose this only because the other alternatives for women are prostitution or rape – the real problem is that all the options involve being dominated by men. That doesn’t make the child marriage any less wrong.)

    My position is that one has no right to an opinion on private behavior that doesn’t harm others, which is different from not affecting the person holding the opinion. Such opinions are uninformed ones, and I agree with Harlan Ellison that the right extends to only informed opinions. I’m talking not about legal rights but about moral rights. Even with behavior that harms others, there are times when judgment is unwarranted because others don’t know the whole story. 

  • http://dpolicar.livejournal.com/ Dave

     

    My position is that one has no right to an opinion on private behavior that doesn’t harm others

    I’m assuming that by “an opinion” you mean something like a moral judgment? I mean, I harm nobody when I paint my livingroom, but I would certainly say that you have the right to opinions like “that’s pretty” or “I’m not fond of that shade of blue” or “your color palette is reminiscent of early 14th century Tuscany” or whatever.

    Even assuming that, though… if I spend several hours a day volunteering my services to aid the needy, that harms nobody, but I would certainly say you have the right to moral judgments about that behavior. Do we disagree here, or is this just a question of semantics?

    If there’s a real disagreement here, I’m interested in your reasons for that position.

  • Tonio

    I’m talking partly about moral judgments, and partly about the tendency by some to treat personal opinion as a judgment. I know some women whose mothers expressed varying levels of disapproval about the daughters’ choice to pursue careers instead of marriage upon becoming adults, in some cases regularly bringing it up for years,

  • http://www.facebook.com/jon.maki Jon Maki

    Okay, this thread has officially convinced me that I have to swing by Five Guys at some point this weekend.

    Last week, I had to fly to Austin for work.  It was an evening flight, so I worked from home that day to allow myself time to get packed and prepared for the trip, and between working and packing I never managed to find time for a proper meal.  I decided I’d head to the airport (Dulles) early enough to get something to eat there before my flight, and I thought, “Hey, isn’t there a Five Guys in the terminal?”

    Unfortunately, circumstances were such that I got there too late to swing by the Five Guys. 

    When I got back last Friday, I cast a lingering gaze at the Five Guys as I made my way to baggage claim, but I was too eager to get home (from Austin, I had to fly on to Syracuse – talk about going from one extreme to another – before finally returning to Virginia, so I was pretty wiped out after cramming that much travel into four days), then I never got around to getting to a regular Five Guys over the weekend.

    Yesterday was my regular “movie night” with a friend, and typically we either order pizza or Chinese food, or else he picks something up on his way to my house.  I meant to text him to suggest that he pick up Five Guys, but didn’t get a chance.

    So, dammit, I’m getting Five Guys this weekend.

    (The only burger I’ve ever had that’s better was at a bar in the middle of nowhere* back home in Michigan.  To be fair, I’ve never had In-n-Out, but while I know a lot of people who prefer it to Five Guys, I know a fair number who prefer Five Guys.)

    *That’s kind of redundant: every place back home is in the middle of nowhere.

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    I’ve never heard of Chick-Fil-A (how the hell do you pronounce that?) but I see they are a company based on Christian values. So, anyone know how much they pay their front line staff? Cleaners? Suppliers? Obviously they’ll be paying penalty rates to staff who work on evenings, Sundays and public holidays.

    Any CFA staff lurking?

  • Hawker40

    The local (San Diego) Chick-Fil-A pays minumum wage, no benefits, makes it impossible to get over 30 hours a week to avoid having to pay benefits, and is closed on Sundays to prevent people from claiming overtime.

    I mean, they’re closed on Sundays so people can get time with thier families, of course.

    They’ve been jerks about forcing thier faith on people for a while around here.  I haven’t been there in a couple of years, and feel better than ever for avoiding them.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    Also, they’re markedly more expensive than comparable chains.

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    So when they say they’re faith-based, they’re being very selective in which bits of the faith they are considering a basis.

    ————–

    After reading this thread I am stunned at the number of hamburger chains there appear to be.

  • Lunch Meat

    The local (San Diego) Chick-Fil-A pays minumum wage, no benefits, makes it impossible to get over 30 hours a week to avoid having to pay benefits, and is closed on Sundays to prevent people from claiming overtime.

    Last I heard, In-n-Out paid their starting employees $10/hour in California. And “last I heard” was several years ago. I think that’s pretty cool.
    And the places I’ve gone to don’t sell limp fries, but maybe that’s just different meanings of “limp”.

    (Okay, I’m seriously going to stop evangelizing for In-n-Out now.)

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    Last I heard, In-n-Out paid their starting employees $10/hour in California. And “last I heard” was several years ago. I think that’s pretty cool.

    What’s the minimum wage in California?

    For a comparison, Australia’s minimum wage is currently $15.96/hour, which at current exchange rates is about $US16.70.

  • Cathy W

    California’s minimum wage is $8/hour. (This is higher than the federal minimum, which is $7.25.)

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Speaking of benefits.

    Is it actually a law in American States that 35, 40 hrs per week = must have benefits, or is it simply a broad social custom that takes the force of quasi-law?

  • Lori

    Is it actually a law in American States that 35, 40 hrs per week =
    must have benefits, or is it simply a broad social custom that takes
    the force of quasi-law? 

    If you’re a full time employee you are entitled to whatever benefits your employer provides to full time employees. The definition of full time varies from state to state. In some places it’s 32+ hours/week. In others it’s 37 and in some it’s 40. If you’re a contract worker then you aren’t covered by this rule no matter how many hours you work because you aren’t a full time employee, you’re a contract worker.

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    If you’re a full time employee you are entitled to whatever benefits your employer provides to full time employees.

    Wait wait wait wait: so an employer can say “I have decided not to provide my full time employees with sick leave, superannuation (401k?), or penalty rates for nights/weekends/public holidays/long shifts” and that would be perfectly legal?

  • Lori

    Overtime and holidays are governed by state law, so no, an employer can’t simply decide not to pay OT. Rules about when OT kicks in vary from state to state though. I was used to California OT rules which say you get time & a half after 8 hours in a day or 40 hours in a week. Here in the glorious new “right to work” state of Indiana time & a half is only after 40 hours in a week. That was a lovely surprise when I started my current job* and was working 12 hours shifts, 2 days one week and 5 days the next. I earned no OT during the 2 day weeks. During the 5 day weeks OT only kicked in a third of the way through day 4.

    Employers are not required to provide health insurance, paid sick time or 401(k) benefits. That’s why the ACA debate has included a lot of scare talk about employers simply opting to drop their health coverage. The rule about FT vs not-FT employees is strictly to keep an employer from creating seperate classes of FT workers, some of whom get benefits and other who don’t. Like I said earlier though, employers can get around this if they chose to by hiring temp workers or contract workers who get no benefits.

    In practice I’ve never had a regular FT job that didn’t have paid sick leave, although the details of the company polices about it have varied quite a lot. All my FT office gigs included health care, but again the details & costs have varied quite a lot. (One of the reasons that I support some kind of national health care is that the cost of health coverage should vary wildly based on nothing other than who your employer is.)

    As a temp I’m eligible for paid sick time and vacation from my temp agency at some point, but I can’t remember when it kicks in. A good long while from now. I could also have gotten get health insurance through them but you have to sign up within the first 30 days working for them and at that point I had no idea if my assignment would last long enough to pay the (fairly pricey) premium on my lousy hourly wage, so I had to pass. Now that I’ve built up a little bit on cash on hand and could probably scrape together the premiums I’m looking into the state sponsored insurance program for low income workers, but it looks like I may not be eligible because I could have gotten insurance through my employer and “chose” not to.

    *A temporary job which I have now had for 3 months with no signs of it either ending or becoming a job with benefits. The HR person for the company recently quit. I found out after she left that she was a temp even though she’d had been there for over 2 years. Now when people try to tell me that corporations aren’t evil I just respond by saying, “The office’s sole HR/i> person.  Temp with no benefits at all. Two freakin’ years.” So far I haven’t found anyone who could come up with a defense of that.

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    Thanks for the info, Lori. The idea that it’s possible to be a permanent employee with no sick leave freaks me right out. We’re seeing an increasingly casualised workforce here, where casuals don’t quality for sick leave. Coming from a public health background, I think it’s a terrible direction for society to take.

    The insurance thing I understand in the intellectual sense, but it’s so far removed from the reality here that it’s hard to grok thinking about insurance as an employee benefit. As I’ve said before, I find linking health care to employment simply monstrous.

  • Lori

     

    The idea that it’s possible to be a permanent employee with no sick
    leave freaks me right out. We’re seeing an increasingly casualised
    workforce here, where casuals don’t quality for sick leave. Coming from a
    public health background, I think it’s a terrible direction for society
    to take.  

    ITA and so do a lot of other people. I saw an interesting article recently (which of course I can’t find now) asking why people are seriously discussing soda bans in order to supposedly make people healthier but no one will even publicly mention the issue of mandatory paid sick time as a means of increasing health by limiting the spread of illness.

    The answer is obviously that banning soda mostly impinges on the rights of the poor, while mandating paid sick time impinges on the rights of the ruling class.

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    The answer is obviously that banning soda mostly impinges on the rights of the poor, while mandating paid sick time impinges on the rights of the ruling class.

    You’ve hit the nail on the head.

    In my workplace’s last collective agreement both sides around the negotiating table (viz., management and the union) opposed two things that are quite common in similar organisations: tying productivity incentives to reducing the number of days sick leave taken; and requiring a medical certificate for single days absence. They also agreed that the organisation would provide annual flu shots to all staff who wanted them–organised and paid for by the organisation, and administered at work on work time–as a core entitlement from now on.

    It was great that we saw eye to eye on this. We’re in the public health industry, so fortunately our management felt that they should be setting an example in this area, at least.

  • http://dpolicar.livejournal.com/ Dave

     IANAL, but that’s my understanding as well. My recollection when I worked for a startup is that courts look a little askance at employers who don’t provide salaries (which does happen), but beyond that pretty much anything goes.

  • Caravelle

    employers who don’t provide what now ? o_O

    I can’t even.

    EDIT: Oh, startups. You mean paying people in stock-options instead of salaries ?

  • http://dpolicar.livejournal.com/ Dave

     Options instead of money is one way this goes, yes. Unpaid internships in exchange for experience which turns out to be a prerequisite for getting hired is another.

  • Cathy W

    There have also been (and still are) cases where employers simply didn’t pay wages as promised – not in a “sorry, can’t make payroll this week” sense but in a “what you gonna do about it” sense….and yes, in cases of this that make it to court, the court looked at it askance, but it tends to happen to people who can’t readily access the legal system.

  • Cathy W

    Expanding on what Lori said – there is no legally mandated set of benefits that must be given to qualifying employees.  Not all full time employees get health insurance (even after the Affordable Care Act kicks in, some employers will still be exempt), and quite a few who theoretically can get it can’t afford to buy into their employer’s plan (I’m looking at you, Wal-Mart). Hardly anyone in the private sector gets a traditional pension anymore, and there’s no requirement for an employer to offer a 401k (a favorably-taxed  investment account, subject to the whims of the market, to which the employer may contribute), and I don’t think there’s any required level of employer contribution if one is available. A  food service or retail worker below management level who gets paid sick days or paid vacation has a truly generous employer. Some employers used to offer paid maternity leave as a benefit (but never much, and the idea of “paternity leave” was laughable) but I think most have stopped doing that in favor of allowing employees to take time off under the Family & Medical Leave Act (no requirement that it be paid time, limit of 12 weeks).

    Long story short, without a union contract or some other form of negotiating leverage, you get what they feel like giving you.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Long story short, without a union contract or some other form of negotiating leverage, you get what they feel like giving you.

    In that case, why do I constantly hear of employers playing games with the hours worked of ostensibly full-time employees so that they “never quite qualify” for benefits? If it’s at the whim of the employer anyway, why not just say “You can work 40 hours a week and get no benefits anyway and LIKE IT”?

    That would at least be more honest than screwing around with peoples’ lives, dangling the ever-present bait of the magical holy grail of a straight 40-hour workweek upon which the full flower of those promised benefits will materialize?

  • Lori

    In that case, why do I constantly hear of employers playing games with
    the hours worked of ostensibly full-time employees so that they “never
    quite qualify” for benefits?

    The “ostensibly” part is that the worker assumed when she was hired that she would be a FT worker because she’s required to be available for 40 hours/week of work, but as long as she isn’t scheduled for more than the state mandated number of hours for a FT worker she is not legally a FT employee and the company is not legally required to provide any benefits. That’s the source of the stories about the folks at W*****T and other such places who consistently get scheduled for 31 hours a week.

    If it’s at the whim of the employer anyway, why not just say “You can
    work 40 hours a week and get no benefits anyway and LIKE IT”?  

    Some do. The issue is that if they say that, they have to say it to all the FT people. So, they can’t give the managers benefits and have FT peons who don’t get them. Which they would totally do if they were allowed to.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Wait, so it IS a law law, like a legal statute, that mandates full-time employees must get a standard benefits package?

  • PJ Evans

    employers playing games with the hours worked of ostensibly full-time employees

    The other thing is laying off (or firing) people just before they’ve been working long enough to get benefits or a pay raise.
    I’ve also heard of parcel delivery companies requiring drivers to buy their own trucks, which means that if they can’t drive, they’re out a lot of money.

  • Tonio

    You’re assuming that “Christian values” as far as the company is concerned are about making the world a more just place, or treating people with compassion. Don’t be silly.  These are all about preserving the hegemony of straight men.

  • Hawker40

    @1cfd07d71c70392c27d26165e23b0cf2:disqus “These are all about preserving the hegemony of straight men.”

    If I may ad, they are all about preserving the hegemony of *Wealthy* (publically) straight men.  And to maintain that hegemony, they will sacrifice gays, lesbians, women, the poor, etc. to the mob.

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    If I may ad, they are all about preserving the hegemony of *Wealthy* (publically) straight men.

    Thanks for adding that, Hawker. Class is most often left out of power/privilege discussions on the ‘net, but let me assure you that wealthy white men show no solidarity with their poor counterparts.

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    Yeah, I know. It might be futile, but I like to call out the implicit understanding that “Christian values” = “particular standard of behaviour about sex and religiosity and nothing more” whenever I see it. It’s my way of saying “No, you move”.

  • Hawker40

    I am a contract employee.  My contract says that I get certain benefits if I am accredited 30 hours a week.  So, if I work, take paid vacation, or federal holiday for at least 30 hours, I get my benefits.  For example, a few weeks back I worked for 16 hours, took 8 hours paid holiday (4 July), and took 16 hours paid vacation, giving me credit for 40 hours worked, so I get my benefits for that week.
    One of my benefits is paid vacation.  I earn 1.5 hours a week paid time off… which I get for taking paid time off.  So I took 16 hours paid vacation and earned 1.5 hours paid vacation.

  • Lori

    But that’s part of your contract with the company, not legally required, right? A company and a contract employee are free to negotiate that, but it’s my understanding that for legal purposes a contract employee =/= a FT employee and the company isn’t required by law to provide you with any benefits.

  • Hawker40

    I’m sorry, Lori, I totally mispoke and/or misrepresented myself.
    My company is a government contractor, so I work “for the contractor” or in GovSpeak “I am a contract employeee/contractor”.  But I am actually a hourly full time employee for the contractor, not a contract employee.
    “The Petty Officer Regrets The Error.”

  • Lori

    No problem. I do sometimes forget that some people become contractors through being employees of companies that provide them with full benefits. Because of my time at Oracle I tend to think of those people as “consultants” instead of “contractors”.

  • Emcee, cubed

    RE: Five Guys fries vs In-N-Out fries. There is also the question of portion size. A regular Five Guys fries could feed a family of four. (Okay, I’m exaggerating. But I have yet to have met an adult who can actually eat an entire regular fries there on their own.) So it if there are two of you, you only order 1 order, or you end up tossing a lot of fries away. You can’t split In-N-Out fries and get the same portion you can at Five Guys. (Oh, and Five Guys also makes their fries from fresh potatoes. In fact, they usually have a sign in the dining room saying what specific town today’s potatoes came from.)

  • BaseDeltaZero

    Thanks. But now I’m feeling foolish, cos I’ve heard people pronounce “filet” as “fillay” a couple of times, and I thought they were doing that thing where we say we’re shopping at Tarjay. Didn’t realise that was the actual pronunciation. Huh.

    ‘Tarjay’ is a joke on pronouncing the name as though it were a fancy French store (or at least with a French name).  ‘Filet’ actually is French.

    I say they have no business even believing that everyone should be straight, or that legal marriage should be limited to straight couples. That’s no different in principle from me deciding who Fred or you or any other individual should marry. The only opinion they’re justified in having on marriage is who they themselves as individuals should and shouldn’t marry.

    I think their opinions are the wrong opinions.  But I’m not sure it’s a great idea to go around telling people what they’re not allowed to think, even if I think that what they think is stupid.  

    Not that I am not a lawyer.  Or an economist.  Or a corporate executive.

    I have decided not to provide my full time employees with sick leave, superannuation (401k?), or penalty rates for nights/weekends/public holidays/long shifts” and that would be perfectly legal?

    I think there might be some kind of mandatory sick leave.  Not 401ks or penalty rates (typically, only fairly white-collar jobs offer 401ks, and penalty rates are basically unheard of – often, you end up with employees having to take unpaid overtime around Christmas/Black Friday on threat of firing).

    Noted what Lori said.  I believe there are laws saying that you can take sick leave (maybe 10 days or so) without being punished.  The company doesn’t have to pay you for it, though.

    employers who don’t provide what now ?

    I’m guessing those employers who pay in wages (a certain amount of money per hour worked), rather than salaries (a fixed amount of money per year).  Or perhaps who pay in commissions (a percentage of sales), which is common for things like real-estate agents, lawyers, and auto salespeople

    Wait, so it IS a law law, like a legal statute, that mandates full-time employees must get a standard benefits package?

    A standard benefts package to the company.  So the company can choose to provide great coverage, or none at all, but they can’t give the executives great coverage and the (full-time) cubicle staff no coverage.  One or the other.  (Of course, there’s nothing stopping the executives from buying whatever coverage they want with their larger salaries.  Or a company doing something like Wal-Mart, where the employee’s share of the cost of coverage is high enough as to make it beyond the reach of most of their employees.

  • Tonio

    I wouldn’t label their beliefs as stupid. The problem is their paternalistic attitude. I don’t have a belief as to who Chick-fil-A’s CEO should or shouldn’t marry. Or for anyone else. He should extend to everyone else the same respect for personal boundaries and individual self-determination. 

  • Tonio

    Remember the adage that your right to swing your fist ends where my nose begins? My right to judge whether you should swing your fist begins where someone else’s nose begins.

  • PJ Evans

     It’s not his beliefs, for me, so much has him giving money to every anti-LGBT organization around, including some that are listed as hate groups by the SPLC (which knows hate groups). Not just against same-sex marriage, but against any rights for LGBTs at all.

  • Tonio

    Cathy wouldn’t be spending his money on those groups if he didn’t believe, in part, that he has the right to decide who other people should marry. The attitude “It’s my opinion that marriage is between a man and a woman” is infuriating. My response to that is “No, it’s your opinion that your marriage is between a man and a woman.” That’s the distinction between the Cathys funding opposition to SSM and the Bezos family spending to uphold it. There’s no equivalence between the two – they might be equivalent if the Bezos’ money went to a hypothetical campaign to oppose opposite-sex marriage. 

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    A standard benefts package to the company.  So the company can
    choose to provide great coverage, or none at all, but they can’t give
    the executives great coverage and the (full-time) cubicle staff no
    coverage.

    That sounds like one of those unintended-consequences problems with laws that are designed to help, because those who wrote the law likely assumed a high percentage of married couples in which a woman working part-time for pin money didn’t need to get health insurance because her husband would be working full-time and already have the necessary insurance.

  • PJ Evans

     I’m in a weird position: I’m on the company payroll, but not an actual employee. I get paid vacation and holidays, but not paid sick time or jury duty. It could be worse: the last place wanted me to tell them, at the beginning of the year, when I’d take vacation.

  • Lori

     

    A standard benefts package to the company.  So the company can
    choose to provide great coverage, or none at all, but they can’t give
    the executives great coverage and the (full-time) cubicle staff no
    coverage.  One or the other.  

    This.

    There is some leeway for providing better options to the executives, at least for some things, but broadly speaking if the company offers a benefit it has to be for all FT employees. If some folks get health insurance, everyone does. Everyone gets the same paid holidays.If anyone gets paid vacation everyone does and IIRC correctly accrues it according to the same schedule (IME always tied to length of time at the company).


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