Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Great moments in chutzpah

This reads like a parody, but it seems to be an actual news story:

In a move that might make some people scratch their heads, a loosely formed coalition of left-leaning bloggers are trying to band together to form a labor union they hope will help them receive health insurance, conduct collective bargaining or even set professional standards. [...]

[Susie Madrak, the author of Suburban Guerilla blog, said] "Blogging is very intense -- physically, mentally," she said. "You're constantly scanning for news. You're constantly trying to come up with information that you think will mobilize your readers. In the meantime, you're sitting at a computer and your ass is getting wider and your arm and neck and shoulder are wearing out because you're constantly using a mouse."

So Madrak would like for others to pay for some or all of her medical expenses so that she might more comfortably engage in her hobby. Could anything more perfectly illustrate the entitlement mindset?

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At 8/14/2007 4:29 PM, Blogger Soccer Dad said...

I understand your argument, but I suspect that this was the spur for her to think about this.

At 8/15/2007 10:40 AM, Blogger Gary Collard said...

Given that it appeared on her blog, you are almost certainly correct, and the proximity makes her stance somewhat understandable; she may be arguing from emotion more than principle.

But...I don't mean to be unsympathetic to the extra repetitive stress brought about by blogging, but it is a choice made by the individual blogger. And who is "management" with whom they hope to negotiate? If they aim to join with other unions, that management is unrelated businesses, and the costs of any health care provided will be passed on to the consumers of those businesses, i.e. you and me. I just don't see this as acceptable.

If an individual is worried about the health implications of blogging, they can find high-deductible coverage combined with an HSA that will soften the blow should their nagging pains advance to the point of surgery.

As an independent software developer, that is what I have to do, and I ask nobody to pay for it beyond whatever I can negotiate with individual employers. It would never even occur to me to ask others to subsidize my engagement in hobbies.

I enjoy the occasional game of pickup basketball; maybe we should unionize and pass our weekend warrior injury costs on to everybody who buys an American-made auto or other domestic goods, for example? I just don't see it.


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