Getting better everywhere but here?

From the Philly Inquirer:

U.S. jobless claims dip, but Pa., N.J. still struggle

For the first time since the start of the recession in late 2007, the number of people filing initial claims for unemployment insurance in the month fell to 330,500 a week on average, the U.S. Labor Department reported Thursday.

The news buoyed Wall Street, but the national story isn’t what’s happening in the Philadelphia region.

“Philadelphia’s economy has struggled this summer,” said Ryan Sweet, an economist with Moody’s Analytics in West Chester.

The last time the national number was so low was in November 2007 – the month before the official start of what economists have described as the worst recession since the Great Depression.

“The economy seems to be picking up some steam as the labor market continues to improve,” said economist Joel Naroff of Naroff Economic Advisors in Bucks County.

Pennsylvania and New Jersey were identified in the report as two of 10 states with the highest unemployment among those covered by unemployment insurance.

“Philadelphia has taken a beating and has taken a while to recover,” said Sweet, who specializes in Pennsylvania’s economy.

“I think, going forward, that it will begin to heal more quickly,” he said.

In New Jersey, July’s unemployment rate dropped to 8.6 percent from 9.7 percent a year ago and 8.7 percent in June.

Pennsylvania’s unemployment rate has remained at 7.5 percent for the last three months, but is down from 8.1 percent a year ago.

In New Jersey, hiring increased in every sector over the year, but declined in most sectors over the summer.

In South Jersey, “it’s a problem in manufacturing,” said Sohini Chowdhury, the Moody’s Analytics economist who specializes in New Jersey.

North Jersey’s mainstay – the financial industry – saw increased hiring in the summer.

This entry was posted in Economics, Employment, Housing Recovery, New Jersey Real Estate. Bookmark the permalink.

124 Responses to Getting better everywhere but here?

  1. Essex says:

    It’s always better somewhere else. Til you get there. Yo!

  2. anon (the good one) says:

    @MotherJones: This is adorable: Karl Rove is pretending that that GOP does, in fact, have a plan to replace Obamacare http://t.co/vnzlUwHwgW

  3. Brian says:

    While unemployment numbers remain high, manufacturers can’t fill jobs

    http://www.dailyrecord.com/article/20130819/NJNEWS/308190003/jobs-in-nj-manufacturing

    Last month, as 11.5 million Americans remained unemployed, manufacturing companies looked in vain for people to fill 600,000 jobs. The problem: They can’t find employees who can work their machines.

    “The No. 1 point of concern among manufacturers that we visit and assess is the inability to find skilled labor,” said Eric Aerts, Morris area account manager for the New Jersey Manufacturing Extension Program. “There’s a tendency to look down on manufacturing jobs, which is a throwback to a time when a person might stand on a production line and just turn a bolt the same way all day long.”
    But today, he added, modern factories are, by and large, clean, beautiful places where people do interesting work.
    “The type of manufacturing that has been sent offshore is that labor-intensive mundane work. The work that’s been retained here is typically much more challenging to produce.”
    Closing the skills gap could do more than help the industry. Some have touted manufacturing as a silver bullet to rebuild the American middle class and the overall economy — the former because the sector pays solid wages, and the latter because of the sector’s much-touted “multiplier effect.”
    Salaries and multipliers
    Those who enter manufacturing stand to make good money. In New Jersey, the average wage for chemical manufacturing in 2011 was $120,400, according to the state Department of Labor and Workforce Development. For computer and electronic product manufacturing, the average was $85,100, and for machinery manufacturing, $67,200.
    Entree to the field is possible with a two-year degree and a certificate or two, according to Robert Lipka, director of customized training solutions at the Center for Business and Technology at County College of Morris.
    “With the right skills and some training, you can be making $50,000 fairly quickly in these kinds of jobs and accelerate up to six figures,” he said. “It doesn’t happen overnight, but it’s a path to a solid income in very reputable companies in a high-tech operation.”
    (Page 2 of 6)
    Specifically, the skills gap in New Jersey and Morris County is in mid-level jobs, according to Melanie Willoughby, senior vice president of government affairs for the New Jersey Business and Industry Association.
    “You have your engineers at the higher end,” she said. “Then you have your entry-level people who are learning how to become machinists. But there’s also the middle level — the high-tech people who run the machines, read the blueprints, do quality control, and handle the logistics of getting the product out the door. You need a lot of them.”
    The multiplier effect of manufacturing is articulated well in “The U.S. Manufacturing Renaissance,” a 2012 report by investment managers Manning & Napier: For every factory job that is added, three to four additional jobs are created in the economy.
    “Suppliers, shipping, transportation, material handling, marketing — all of these support services produce other companies,” said John Kennedy, chief operating officer of the New Jersey Manufacturing Extension Program. “If FedEx was shipping nothing, FedEx wouldn’t exist.”
    The Advanced Manufacturing Portal, a website showcasing all federal interagency manufacturing initiatives, reports that every dollar spent in manufacturing generates $1.35 in additional activity.
    But all this good news amounts to a silver lining, not a silver bullet, according to Manning & Napier, which cautions that the tailwinds the sector is now experiencing may meet potential headwinds in the future that could derail the rebuilding story. These headwinds could include tariffs on imports that spur trade wars that decrease American ability to export; tight money lending standards; high corporate taxes; and a stronger dollar, which could spur American spending abroad, increase imports, and decrease worldwide demand for American products.
    Today, though, manufacturing is growing in New Jersey, according to Willoughby.
    “It’s growing in certain niches, including precision manufacturing (formerly known as tool and die making) and contract manufacturing,” she said. “It’s been growing in the military market because we have a lot of manufacturers here who build for the military.”

    (Page 3 of 6)
    Prototypes at PicatinnyA case in point is the 100,000-square-foot Army Prototype Integration Facility at Picatinny Arsenal in Rockaway Township, which employs 135 people who design and make prototype munitions for the Army.
    “Prototyping isn’t building things by hand one at a time like a Lamborghini or a Ferrari,” said Stephen Luckowski, chief of material manufacturing and the prototype technology division. “When we build things, we’re thinking about mass production. We make sure a design can be produced anywhere within the industrial base of the United States.”
    For instance, the facility created gunner protection kits, needed shortly after Operation Iraqi Freedom began in 2003, to protect soldiers riding atop Humvees, Stryker infantry combat vehicles and Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected, or MRAP, vehicles from insurgents.
    At Picatinny, products are designed using computer-aided design software. The CAD models are imported directly into the software of computer numerical control, or CNC, machines on the floor of the factory.
    “That way there’s no information lost between us and them,” said Bryan Anderson, a mechanical engineer in the CAD department who also served in Afghanistan. “There’s very little human error enveloped into the system.”
    Workers on the factory floor operate laser, milling, bending and welding machines that are activated by the computer programming. It’s in this environment that 41-year-old Brian Hamilton of Wharton found a career for himself. After graduating high school in 1990, he worked as a landscaper for 15 years before starting work on a degree in mechanical engineering technology at County College of Morris.
    Hamilton was hired in 2007 through a CCM work co-op program to do contract work for Jet Industrial Electronics. He wound up at Picatinny, where he now operates several CNC machines in the prototype facility. Recently he finished his degree.
    “I love my job. It’s different things every day, except when I’m running production,” Hamilton said. “But the prototype work is all very interesting. I get to use 3-D modeling software and AutoCAD software.

    (Page 4 of 6)
    “My salary is decent. I make about $50,000 a year. As a technician operating the machines, the most I can get up to is about $90,000,” he added. “But if I continue to broaden my horizons with the engineering, I can do better. An engineer can make six figures.”
    Engaged to be married, he is now house hunting with his fiancée, who has two children.
    There are many initiatives underway to keep and grow manufacturing jobs like Hamilton’s here in New Jersey and to train more workers to do them.
    Since 2010, when Gov. Chris Christie took office, the New Jersey Economic Development Authority has invested more than $175 million in financing and incentives to help 16 manufacturers in Morris County alone. The assistance saved 3,514 jobs that were at risk of leaving the state, according to agency spokesperson Erin Gold.
    “It’s also expected to leverage more than $465 million in private investment and create nearly 2,260 new jobs and more than 2,065 construction jobs,” she said.
    TrainingWhen it comes to training for such jobs, many avenues of opportunity are emerging.
    Under the direction of Lipka, the Center for Business and Technology at CCM helps companies recruit and/or train new employees for the workplace in many sectors, including manufacturing. The center worked extensively with Genral Electric’s Aviation’s Electromechanical Actuation Division in Whippany, which recently was sold to TransDigm Group.
    “We set up a six-month training program to get their new employees integrated and acclimated to the working environment from basic skill levels right up to advanced training,” Lipka said. “We covered everything from math skills and blueprint reading and some measurement courses to computerized manufacturing processes training. It was a combination of training we did, plus on-the-job training once they got into the GE working environment.”
    To engage high school-age students, the New Jersey Business and Industry Association is promoting career and technical high schools, also known as vocational-technical schools, as a path for students coming out of middle school, according to Willoughby.

    (Page 5 of 6)
    “We’re also working to bring mechatronics — courses that combine mechanical and electronics skills — to New Jersey career and technical schools,” she said. “This course of study teaches students the basic skills they need to work for a manufacturer so a company can hire students right out of high school. Mechatronics is very prominent in Pennsylvania.”
    ManufactureNJ, one of eight state-funded talent networks, works to educate people about the positives in a manufacturing career. It is hosted by the New Jersey Institute of Technology.
    “We want to attract younger people who are, in droves, not choosing this as a career,” said Gale Spak, associate vice president of NJIT’s Division of Continuing Professional Education. “We also are looking to help transition men and women out of work from other sectors in New Jersey to come into this sector.”
    Additionally, ManufactureNJ is promoting a stackable credentials and credits system, according to Spak. Currently, individuals can learn manufacturing skills on their own or at community colleges and then earn credentials by taking tests given by the National Association of Manufacturers. The credentials are stackable: the more certification credentials earned, the higher the earning potential.
    “The Advanced Manufacturing Talent Network has been working the last two years on a system under which a student who has a credential can have it counted as credits in a college,” Spak said. “Learners can’t earn a whole degree by obtaining industry-vetted credentials. They’ll have to pay the college to take other courses. With stackable credits, though, they can get a degree faster and cheaper.”
    A total of 120 long-term-unemployed people, out of work for more than 27 weeks, will be trained to work in fabricated metals under a $2.5 million federal Dislocated Worker National Emergency Grant awarded to New Jersey last month. The money expands a two-year-old pilot program, taught at select community colleges, that to date has resulted in 88 percent of participants landing jobs.

    (Page 6 of 6)
    Some companies, including E.P. Heller Co. in Madison, which makes solid carbide cutting tools, and Odyssey Specialty Vehicles in Wharton, which custom builds emergency vehicles, conduct their own training programs and make the training a feature of employment.
    At E.P. Heller, Doug Heller, the vice president of sales, said the people he employs usually don’t know how to read a scale and have never worked on machines.
    “Voc-tech schools don’t do this type of training anymore, so we do a lot of training,” he said. “The Fortune 500 companies can pay the best and they have better benefits, but they don’t offer training. Our people learn here. Then they go out and say, ‘I worked for E.P. Heller Co. for five years. I can set up machines. I can read measurements. I can make blueprints.’ ”
    Odyssey hires entry-level people who don’t have bad habits and teaches them the “Odyssey Way,” according to Larry Kahan, founder and chief business development officer.
    “It’s not unusual for a guy to start sweeping floors or work on one specific thing in a cabinet and then grow into being an electrical tech,” he said. “Or we’ll send him to school for upholstery. Or he’ll be a master cabinet maker. But the cabinet guy doesn’t just make cabinets. He can also weld and do mechanical work. He learns it all here or he comes in with some skills and we expand on them.”
    Changes at companiesHoward Wial, professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago and a nonresident senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, adds that manufacturers can make changes to improve their own job vacancies.
    “We had such a decline in manufacturing employment in this country between 2000 and 2010 that many manufacturers got out of the habit of recruiting and hiring,” said Wial, author of a paper titled “Locating American Manufacturing.” “They were in the other mode of cutting back. They may just not know how to recruit the workers that they need anymore.”
    Many employees who do land manufacturing jobs say they’re happy. For instance, Dennis Failla of Madison, a 41-year-old manager of inventory and quality at E.P. Heller, said he found a whole new work life when he arrived three years ago. Previously, he studied math and science at Montclair State University and then worked as a drafter who used AutoCAD to design items similar to the ones he now makes.
    “Before I got here, I never realized the processes they go through in order to manufacture a simple bur,” he said, referring to a rotary file used on castings, medical parts and aircraft to remove material. “I’m a good learner and there is a lot to know. To identify the burs, for example. We make thousands. I know them all by now.”
    Constantly learning and embracing new technology is a key to success in manufacturing. Luckowski, of the Army Prototype Integration Facility, said the arsenal already has progressed to making product parts whole, directly from a computer CAD image. This “Star Trek” style replication is known as additive manufacturing, or direct digital manufacturing.

  4. anon (the good one) says:

    3. what’s your point?

    60 minutes had a report on this. Employer wanted somebody with experience. In design. In marketing. In software dev. etc, etc, etc. no, not a person for each skill. the applicanr had to had all thise skills! was willing to hire on the spot for a tad over minimum wage.

  5. Brian says:

    Start reading where it says (Page 6 of 6).

    4.anon (the good one) says:
    August 23, 2013 at 7:56 am
    3. what’s your point?

    60 minutes had a report on this. Employer wanted somebody with experience. In design. In marketing. In software dev. etc, etc, etc. no, not a person for each skill. the applicanr had to had all thise skills! was willing to hire on the spot for a tad over minimum wage.

  6. Essex says:

    Really have no sympathy for any firm that cannot find people to build and box their widgets. If they lack human capital and it affects their business, they are a bigger failure than whatever ‘system’ or school they blame for their lack of recruitment success. Seriously, it’s pathethic.

  7. Fast Eddie says:

    Pennsylvania and New Jersey were identified in the report as two of 10 states with the highest unemployment among those covered by unemployment insurance.

    Housing market is in high gear here; don’t know what they’re talking about. In fact, I just raised the price on my house another 30K as I have realtors now knocking on my door begging for the house. I understand it’s very competitive here and if one can’t afford to live here, then one needs to look out of state.

  8. Fast Eddie says:

    At E.P. Heller, Doug Heller, the vice president of sales, said the people he employs usually don’t know how to read a scale and have never worked on machines.

    The transformation of America… Yes! We! Can!

  9. Comrade Nom Deplume, knee jerk savant says:

    [6]sx

    Sadly, the skills they need used to be taught. IMHO, the educational system started to slide in the late 80’s and 90’s, and made a halfhearted attempt to catch up. That slide was precipitated by a perfect storm of sorts when the system started losing revenue and talent; the ossified union rules started to become an obstacle; the “everyone gets a trophy” mentality took hold; PC teaching was ascendant; and working parents put more demands on the system that were often contradictory. There are other factors but this is a RE blog, not a teaching journal, The profession lost many who could, and did, seek greener pastures, leaving behind a less capable, jaded, and (hate to say it but evidence suggests it) left-leaning teaching corp. and once ed standards were lowered so that most could graduate, what came in to fill the void? Well, lets just say that it’s no accident that you will be hard pressed to find a women’s studies major at MIT.

    There’s some truth to jokes like this:

    A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of production is 4/5 of the price. What is his profit?

    Teaching Math in 1960:

    A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of production is 4/5 of the price, or $80. What is his profit?

    Teaching Math in 1970:

    A logger exchanges a set “L” of lumber for a set “M” of money. The cardinality of set “M” is 100. Each element is worth one dollar. Make 100 dots representing the elements of the set “M.” The set “C,” the cost of production contains 20 fewer points than set “M.” Represent the set “C” as subset of set “M” and answer the following question: What is the cardinality of the set “P” of profits?

    Teaching Math in 1980:

    A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of production is $80 and his profit is $20. Your assignment: Underline the number 20.

    Teaching Math in 1990:

    By cutting down beautiful forest trees, the logger makes $20. What do you think of this way of making a living? Topic for class participation after answering the question: How did the forest birds and squirrels “feel” as the logger cut down the trees? There are no wrong answers.

    Teaching Math in 2002:

    A logger sells a truckload of lumber for $100. His cost of production is $120. How does Arthur Andersen determine that his profit margin is $60?

    Teaching Math in 2010:

    El hachero vende un camion cargado de lena por $100. Su gasto de produccion es……..

  10. Comrade Nom Deplume, knee jerk savant says:
  11. grim says:

    I must be old, we had metal shop and technical drafting available in high school. I took 3 years worth of electronics/robotics.

    What do they teach today?

  12. Fast Eddie says:

    What do they teach today?

    Shorthand texting with advanced emoticons.

  13. Carlito says:

    Education started to go down the drain just after I graduated

  14. Comrade Nom Deplume, knee jerk savant says:

    [11] grim

    Don’t know about k-12, but once you get to college, there are lots of ways to waste Mummy and Daddy’s money:

    http://www.bestcollegesonline.com/blog/2011/01/17/20-completely-ridiculous-liberal-arts-courses-that-really-exist/

  15. chicagofinance says:

    Trends in above collarline tats…….how the get turned down for a job moving shopping carts in the parking lot……..how to emulate the habits of rich people when you have no money or ambition…..

    Fast Eddie says:
    August 23, 2013 at 9:03 am
    What do they teach today?
    Shorthand texting with advanced emoticons.

  16. Brian says:

    “What do they teach today?”

    Auto CAD classes.

    We had some friends over a few weeks ago and one of them mentioned that their local high school was canceling woodshop and metal shop programs. Not sure if there’s any truth to that and I hope it isn’t a growing trend.

  17. grim says:

    Why can’t I even find a class list? I’ve looked at a dozen NJ HS websites and nothing.

  18. chicagofinance says:

    Heading to Montauk…….I will see you all in hell…..

  19. anon (the good one) says:

    information economy.

    manufacturing is just so déclassé. today’s aim in America is to extract value as opposed to add/create value. why to do manual labor when you can get a MBA, sit in an office and collect fees from manufacturers? my advice to the new generations: study anthropology or such and get the highest gpa possible. then enroll in Wharton. Name yoursel WhartonFinance. You will become rich by extracting value from manufacturers (and such real value producers) by collecting lots of fees by parroting the WSJ. this is the new America.

    grim says:
    August 23, 2013 at 8:54 am
    I must be old, we had metal shop and technical drafting available in high school. I took 3 years worth of electronics/robotics.

  20. Brian says:

    Wierd right? What’s the big secret? Do they all just follow some state or federally mandated curriculum?

    17.grim says:
    August 23, 2013 at 9:25 am
    Why can’t I even find a class list? I’ve looked at a dozen NJ HS websites and nothing.

  21. grim says:

    Found some, hats off to Hillsborough for making it easy for me.

  22. anon (the good one) says:

    Robert J. Gordon has been writing about it.

    Benjamin Wallace-Wells picked up and discussed some of Gordon’s arguments last month in New York magazine: “What if everything we’ve come to think of as American is predicated on a freak coincidence of economic history? And what if that coincidence has run its course?”

  23. Brian says:

    I know they have a robotics program at my local high school…the local paper is always talking about them competing…… You wouldn’t know it looking at the high school’s website though.

    21.grim says:
    August 23, 2013 at 9:31 am
    Found some, hats off to Hillsborough for making it easy for me.

  24. Fast Eddie says:

    why to do manual labor when you can get a MBA

    How can they get an MBA when they can’t convert seven and three eighths to decimal?

  25. Don’t need to know stinkin’ fractions when you can package failed loan instruments and sell them to the greater fool down the line. All you need to have is the social skill necessary to grease the guy who has to stamp your product AAA.

  26. Most MBAs I’ve met could bust out a lemonade stand.

  27. Comrade Nom Deplume, knee jerk savant says:

    [22] anon,

    That very idea (worded differently) has long been on my mind. Care to share the link?

  28. grim says:

    Unfortunately, there aren’t many manufacturers that’d even be around if it weren’t for the suits in the office upstairs. I’m not trying to put down anyone on the shop floor, but you’d be naive if you didn’t recognize all the components necessary to get a manufacturing business to operate.

    Who came up with the business plan? Arranged financing and investors? Found a location? Built a plant? Contracted with tooling and machine providers? Hired the shop floor? Sourced raw materials and contracted with suppliers? Managed the legal and regulatory requirements? Created the marketing? Found customers? Sold the product? Managed AR so we actually got paid? Managed AP and the payroll .. so we actually got paid?

    Yeah yeah, the guys upstairs are nothing but crooks.

  29. Comrade Nom Deplume, knee jerk savant says:

    [27] anon,

    Never mind. Found it and I think I had already read it. Pretty good fodder for the dystopian types here like me.

    Also, it complements but doesn’t duplicate my musing on capitalism and “American Exceptionalism” and whether the latter is a historical anomaly.

  30. anon (the good one) says:

    Nom,
    here’s the link of Wallace-Wells’ rumination on Gordon. excellent article.
    I’m sure you will find a way to reduce the analysis in the typical regressive, right-wing manner.

    nymag.com/news/features/economic-growth-2013-7/

  31. Comrade Nom Deplume, knee jerk savant says:

    [30] anon,

    Read it and I agree that it is excellent. What I don’t understand, or know, is if you approve. That is a rather dark vision, one that I don’t hear from the left even though their class war rhetoric (allow me the literary device for ease and clarity) seems to be in anticipation of this outlook by its implicit focus on zero sum thinking and a rejection of social mobility as a tenet of economic, fiscal, and regulatory policy.

    I guess it comes down to the fact that left and right more or less agree on the existence of the problem and the bleakness of the outlook. What we don’t agree on is who is to blame and how to get out of, or even how to best manage, this mess.

    Nothing here suggests I shouldn’t go and buy more ammo.

  32. Anon E. Moose says:

    Here’s Precisely How Stupid Obama

    Obama says the Republicans actually agree with him, but are afraid of the tea party and Rush Limbaugh to say it.

    Admission that the GOP is as out of touch with the country as he is. As if its bad that elected officials are responsive to the people.

    I never in my life recall a president so vain as to obsess about what political commentators say about him. Not to mention he has no compulsion to use his office to call out a specific citizen for exercising the first amendment. If this president is what our ‘free press’ delivered us, what are its redeeming values again?

    http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/356554/obama-republicans-agree-me-theyre-just-worried-about-what-rush-will-say-andrew-johnson

  33. Anon E. Moose says:

    Redux [32];

    Headline: Here’s Precisely How Stupid Obama Thinks His Kool-Aid Brigade Is

  34. grim says:

    From Bloomberg:

    Sales of New U.S. Homes Fell More Than Forecast in July

    Purchases of new U.S. homes plunged in July by the most in more than three years and previous months were revised down, a sign that growth in the industry may be taking a pause as mortgage rates rise.

    Sales of newly built homes declined 13.4 percent to a 394,000 annualized pace, the weakest since October, following a 455,000 rate in the prior period that was lower than previously estimated, Commerce Department figures showed today in Washington. The median estimate of 74 economists surveyed by Bloomberg called for a decrease to 487,000. Last month’s decline was the biggest since May 2010.

  35. Comrade Nom Deplume, no longer at the beach says:

    Memo to Eric Holder: Are you gonna ignore the low-hanging fruit?

    http://www.cnn.com/2013/08/21/justice/australia-student-killed-oklahoma/index.html

  36. Comrade Nom Deplume, no longer at the beach says:

    [33] moose

    “Headline: Here’s Precisely How Stupid Obama Thinks His Kool-Aid Brigade Is”

    Since you put it that way, I have to say that I AGREE WITH THE PRESIDENT.
    When it comes to the gullibility of his followers, that is.

  37. Comrade Nom Deplume, no longer at the beach says:

    [36] redux

    The evidence that the Okla. killing is a federal hate crime seems credible, enough to pass a motion to dismiss or directed verdict. It certainly seems as credible, perhaps more so, than the “evidence” adduced against Zimmerman after the DoJ literally beat the bushes to try to drum up some evidence that they can act upon.

    It will be telling if DoJ does nothing. I expect that there will be some terse two-sentence statement from the USA office in OKC about “insufficient evidence.” No need for Holder to weigh in.

  38. Anon E. Moose says:

    Nom [36];

    Memo to Eric Holder: Are you gonna ignore the low-hanging fruit [again]?

    FTFY. ;-)

  39. Essex says:

    Lean In! And go to work in your brother’s tech firm!

  40. Richard says:

    Anyone know of good places to find antiques in NNJ? Preferably a barn of rustic furniture rather than a local shop of expensive collectibles.

  41. daddyo says:

    Anyone know of good places to find antiques in NNJ? Preferably a barn of rustic furniture rather than a local shop of expensive collectibles.

    —-

    You are unlikely to find such a thing in NJ. Your best bet would be hillbilly country – warren county, western morris, western hunterdon, etc.

  42. Ben says:

    Anyone know of good places to find antiques in NNJ? Preferably a barn of rustic furniture rather than a local shop of expensive collectibles.

    General Store in Wall. Its an old train station that sells antiques and Pork Roll Egg and Cheese sandwiches. The sandwich is legendary, the antiques are nice and old. No one really ever buys the antiques, they just go for the sandwich.

    The other place is at Columbus Flea Market. There is a giant warehouse that they recently built and its all antique furniture and trinkets.

  43. Brian says:

    There’s a bunch along route 206 in Andover and Andover Boro.

    41.Richard says:
    August 23, 2013 at 12:46 pm
    Anyone know of good places to find antiques in NNJ? Preferably a barn of rustic furniture rather than a local shop of expensive collectibles.

  44. daddyo says:

    There’s a bunch along route 206 in Andover and Andover Boro.

    – – –

    That’s the area I was thinking of –

  45. Richard says:

    Didn’t realise there were hillbillies in Andover. Look forward to meeting them on the weekend, thanks. Columbus Flea Market looks good too, though probably tough to do both in one go.

  46. Brian says:

    Some people don’t realize Andover is part of NJ. Bergen County is the center of the universe after all….

  47. Michael says:

    A look at the political spectrum of the u.s.. It’s amazing how many people throw around words like the left and right without a true knowledge of what that really is.

    http://progressiveliving.org/graphics/TRUE_POLITICAL_SPECTRUM.htm

  48. daddyo says:

    Wasn’t Deliverance set in Andover, NJ?

    All hillbillies up there, it’s a verified fact.

  49. anon (the good one) says:

    Michael,
    not sure that I entirely agree. Would place conservatives on the upper quadrant. For the most part they strongly favor oligarchs and their right to manipulate our political system. i.e. the war in Iraq

  50. Brian says:

    Nah, you’re thinking of Friday the 13th

    daddyo says:
    August 23, 2013 at 4:15 pm
    Wasn’t Deliverance set in Andover, NJ?

    All hillbillies up there, it’s a verified fact.

  51. Anon E. Moose says:

    Michael [49];

    Every time I think you’re just too damn cartoonish a leftist to be real, you go ahead and post something like that that so earnestly. I mean, what kind of comedian would troll “progressive living -dot-org” just to amuse a random bunch of blog commenters without jetting paid anything for their troubles? No one. That’s what makes you so special.

  52. xolepa says:

    Oh, and all those hillbillies in Western Hunterdon. Must be those residents of Delaware township living in their all stone colonials on 10 acre lots.

    And you all can see more in Lambertville. Why, every other shop is owned by a hillbilly.

  53. Anon E. Moose says:

    X [55];

    And New Hope, right across the river; though that’s more of a collectible shop town, there’s a barn or two on the main drag.

  54. Ottoman says:

    I’d say Lafayette on Route 15 is better for antiques and antique furniture than Andover, but you could do both easily on the same day. Andover’s more junk and fake Victorian sh!t than furniture IMO. Also Hamburg Antique Center is decent (tho haven’t been up there in a couple years).

    Jacks Barn in Oxford next to the dump is probably the kind of place you’re looking for. Last year we got three antique dressers there that needed work for $10 each because they were trying to clear out the antiques that came when they bought the place. It gets fancier every year so prices may be quite a bit higher now and I haven’t been this year.

    Upper Bucks County just over the Delaware in the Kintnersville area has Gristies, Antiques Haven, and Ferndale–which is another barn full of great furniture.

    If you’re actually looking for antique furniture, and not just browsing for the weekend, skip NJ. I know a couple of amazing places out in Lancaster and Berks PA. One’s an Amish guy with 3 2 story buildings packed with nothing but furniture.

    Friday the 13th was filmed in Blairstown.

  55. anon (the good one) says:

    NY Post reads: New York City Cost per inmate. $167,000 average annual cost.

    Is that accurate?

    Is it because real estate is so expensive? No wonder conservatives want to privatize it. Lots of dough to be made.

  56. Richard says:

    Thanks Ottoman that’s handy

  57. DXpJul6 says:

    386884 698274Great post however , I was wanting to know if you could write a litte more on this subject? Id be very thankful if you could elaborate a little bit further. Bless you! 156765

  58. Another day in hell.

  59. Big day yesterday at skool where my wife works: 10 guys from 3M came and installed stick-on, full-pane reinforcements on all the glass doors and windows to make them shatterproof when hit by gunfire.

    My wife feels no safer than before.

    However, 3M was paid close to 70K for their product and four hours of work.

  60. Michael says:

    63- I wonder who 3m lobbied for that. Pretty sad! On a brighter note, at least 10 guys were put to work and 3m was still able to snake out at least 65,000 in profit for its shareholders. Honestly, we should lobby for a law that prohibits any company from profiting on work completed for govt projects. Any type of project or service be completed at cost. That would prob help eliminate our national and state debts. I have to stop, I’m making too much sense. Allowing companies to profit from tax dollars just attracts corruption. God knows how much of the pentagon budget is snaked away. Also, who knows how much Sanzari has snaked away from the state of nj through his construction business. He only has a wing in Hackensack hospital named after himself.

  61. Michael says:

    Ignoring Mark Twain’s advice about not picking fights with people who buy ink by the barrel, the increasingly tone deaf Hackensack University Medical Center (HUMC) will no longer advertise in The Record, and has banned the newspaper from being sold or distributed on hospital property. The move appears to be retaliatory: The Record ran a story on Sunday that “detailed how various board members help to underwrite Bergen County’s Democratic leadership and how several trustees do business with the hospital – a practice prohibited at some North Jersey hospitals.” The Record also ran a hard-hitting story this week on contractor Joseph Sanzari, a major donor and HUMC player.

    Read more at http://pnj.omgit.net/tags/joseph-sanzari#ixzz2ct6Kh5tE
    or sign up for a free trial of State Street Wire at http://www.politickernj.com/freetrial

  62. Michael says:

    http://blog.nj.com/njv_thurman_hart/2010/07/if_its_a_conflict_sarlo_should.html

    “For example, Sarlo, until recently, served as municipal engineer for Carlstadt, which makes for a short drive to work. Sarlo saw absolutely no conflict of interest in working as a paid agent of two municipalities in his constituency – or in hauling in another paycheck from the Sanzari construction company where he was Chief Engineer. That would be the same Sanzari company that was awarded a non-competitive bid to build rail terminal in the Meadowlands. Nor did Sarlo see any conflicts in passing legislation to finance EnCap, which his election campaign and employer benefited from. No conflicts were seen when Sarlo castigated the State Health Commissioner for a license extension for Pascack Valley Hospital, where his employer had a direct financial interest.”

  63. Michael says:

    This is sickening!! The saddest part is how avg govt employees are used as the scapegoat. The govt employees (the ones that are paid 6 figures) that are in posh overpaid jobs are there due to political hookups.

  64. Michael says:

    How is Sanzari still allowed to conduct business in our state? I’m finding article after article with links of corruption from this bastard.

  65. Michael says:

    tbworried says:
    October 5, 2010 at 9:19 am
    “Always amusing how suddenly the Democrats are so interested in “getting to the bottom” of things. Wonder where they were during all the scandals of the last two administrations?

    I still wonder what the report that Corzine spent 3 or 4 million on in regards to his monetization fiasco said? It is minor amount of money but still a waste of public funds on a whim.
    Also not investigated is how the state got scammed on the Giants Stadium deal and how we are still paying off a loan on the old stadium which is demolished.

    It is all a sick game and we all suffer while these idiots play it.
    Will enough people ever get wise to it and start to elect some new blood over these fools?”

  66. Michael says:

    Ok, I’m done. I’m going to puke now. I’m sick to my stomach.

  67. anon (the good one) says:

    there is nothing to do. all, everything is putrid, corruption.
    even on this website. most here are more interested in fighting the poor, minorities, the powerless, the oppressed than fighting the system.

  68. Juice Box says:

    re # 77 – anon – care to regale us with some of your personal tales in fighting corruption in NJ? How may lawsuits have you personally filed? Have you been down to the FBI office in Newark to file a complaint?

  69. Ben says:

    Big day yesterday at skool where my wife works: 10 guys from 3M came and installed stick-on, full-pane reinforcements on all the glass doors and windows to make them shatterproof when hit by gunfire.

    My wife feels no safer than before.

    However, 3M was paid close to 70K for their product and four hours of work.

    When my district was going through budget cuts, they were planning on laying off 50 teachers. Meanwhile, they also had an action plan to install new doors in every single classroom so that you would have a locking mechanism from the inside via a key. This was going to cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. Several parents, some of whom were independent contractors kept trying to bring up the fact that its pretty easy to install a new lock on a door rather than pay for an entirely new door. The board members pretended they weren’t even talking.

  70. Brian says:

    I’d rather the state spend money on that then Sweeneys bloated smart card gun registry bill.

    Scrapple n’Ricin says:
    August 24, 2013 at 7:18 am
    Big day yesterday at skool where my wife works: 10 guys from 3M came and installed stick-on, full-pane reinforcements on all the glass doors and windows to make them shatterproof when hit by gunfire.

    My wife feels no safer than before.

    However, 3M was paid close to 70K for their product and four hours of work.

  71. Michael says:

    I mean if this kind of corruption is happening on the local level, god knows how bad it is at the national level. I hate to say it but our govt is looking more and more like a fascist state based on crony capitalism. Democratic republic my ass.

  72. Michael says:

    79- Brian, that’s disgusting. Rule by the people for the people huh?

  73. Michael says:

    80- I love how the American people are worried (more like distracted) by insignificant issues like gun control. Constitution says right to bear arms, so why are we wasting precious tax money on the issue. I guess to keep people distracted from these bogus contracts being signed.

  74. Michael says:

    Wow 9 f-cking jobs!!! Really!!! Total compensation-362,186.

    Last name Rest Location Salary at
    location* Number
    of jobs* Total salary,
    all jobs 2012* Pension fund
    KERWIN EDWARD L POHATCONG TOWNSHIP $11,038 9 $362,186 Public Employees Retirement System
    KERWIN EDWARD L WARREN TOWNSHIP $82,076 9 $362,186 Public Employees Retirement System
    KERWIN EDWARD L FAR HILLS BOROUGH $14,790 9 $362,186 Public Employees Retirement System
    KERWIN EDWARD L CHESTER BOROUGH $26,935 9 $362,186 Public Employees Retirement System
    KERWIN EDWARD L BEDMINSTER TOWNSHIP $72,093 9 $362,186 Public Employees Retirement System
    KERWIN EDWARD L WATCHUNG BOROUGH $53,228 9 $362,186 Public Employees Retirement System
    KERWIN EDWARD L FLEMINGTON BOROUGH $26,296 9 $362,186 Public Employees Retirement System
    KERWIN EDWARD L PEAPACK & GLADSTONE BOROUGH $25,501 9 $362,186 Public Employees Retirement System
    KERWIN EDWARD L BERNARDSVILLE BORO $50,229 9 $362,186 Public Employees Retirement System
    MURRAY DAMIAN G ISLAND HEIGHTS BOROUGH $11,220 7 $272,300 Public Employees Retirement System

  75. Anon E. Moose says:

    Anon [77];

    on this website. most here are more interested in fighting the poor, minorities, the powerless, the oppressed than fighting the system.

    Why is it the leftist solution for the failures of “the system” is more system? We’ve spent $15 Trillion in the “War on Poverty”, but we have more poor than ever.

    Your solution: More Cowbell!

  76. Michael says:

    How can one guy perform 9 different jobs? Is he superman? I’m disgusted. I’m going outside to enjoy this beautiful day. Hopefully it will help lower my blood pressure.

  77. Anon E. Moose says:

    Michael [86];

    How can one guy perform 9 different jobs? Is he superman?

    No, you’re jealous that some person can earn $360,000; which is why you want the money of all ‘rich’ people redistributed to people like you. According to you, however, the 99% of the world that is poorer than you can go scratch.

    I have no idea what Mr. Kerwin does for these 9 towns. Many towns hire attorneys on a party time basis to staff municipal courts. An experienced law firm partner can easily earn $360k in the private sector. If he divides his time among 9 towns pro rata, then there is nothing sinister involved. The folly is that under the rubric of “municipal employee” a well paid professional is presumed to require a platinum pension guaranteed by the taxpayers at some multiple of his salary, and is thus given one.

    The real ‘problem’ with Mr. Kerwin, if there is one, is that elected officials are quite the free spenders with my tax money. In a real market, it might not require that much money to purchase services of his quality. Its often the case that a 50% discount off the cost of hiring a full time professional seems like a good deal to a town, even if they’re only getting 25% of that individual’s capacity. String 4 or 5 of those together, and the individual does well for himself. The problem, again, is that their negotiating counterpart is spending other people’s money.

  78. joyce says:

    84

    If Damian Murray got hit by a bus today, the world would be a better place.

  79. anon (the good one) says:

    the war on Iraq. at the national level, who benefited from it? how much did it cost to all of us? where were the so-called fiscal conservatives knowing full well that thrillions would be spent?

    Michael says:
    August 24, 2013 at 9:50 am
    I mean if this kind of corruption is happening on the local level, god knows how bad it is at the national level. I hate to say it but our govt is looking more and more like a fascist state based on crony capitalism. Democratic republic my ass.

  80. Michael says:

    87- It sounds like you are defending this robber because he is a lawyer. I agree with you on the pension matter, how can a lawyer receive a pension? This reeks of corruption and makes me sick.

  81. Michael says:

    88- Joyce, well said.

    The ranks of highly paid double dippers — government employees with two or more public jobs that paid more than $100,000 together — swelled by 20 percent last year, despite calls to end the practice, Gannett New Jersey has found.

    A review of pension enrollment data found that:

    A total of 853 highly paid double dippers were in the state’s largest public employee retirement fund last year, an increase of 20 percent from 2006 to 2007.

    Those same multiple-job holders had a collective salary of $107.8 million, also up 20 percent from 2006. They held an average of 2.8 jobs each and had an average pay of $126,000 in 2007. All totaled, there were 6,271 multiple-job holders — including one woman with 12 jobs — pulling down $354 million in salaries.

    Although the total number of government jobs — municipal, county, state, school, police and fire department — held steady at 464,000 from 2006 to 2007, the total base salaries rose 3.7 percent to $22.8 billion — equal to nearly half of all state and local tax money collected last year.

    To view salaries for all employees, and a searchable list of multiple-job holders, visit http://www.DataUniverse.com and click on “What’s New.” DataUniverse is the Asbury Park Press’ public records site on the Web.

    Gannett New Jersey has found numerous examples over the years of independent contractors, mostly lawyers, receiving far better government pension benefits than full-time government employees. By cobbling together multiple part-time posts, some multiple-job holders can amass an annual public salary that eclipses the amount New Jersey governors are entitled to under state law.

    And with higher salaries come higher pension payments upon retirement.

    Take Damian G. Murray, the highest paid multiple-job holder in the state last year, according to pension records. He also keeps a private law office.

    A municipal court judge for eight Ocean County municipalities, his total taxpayer-funded pay was $301,826. The chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court is paid $212,100.

    When Murray, 59, retires from government service, his final pension will be based on the average of his highest three salaries. That could qualify him for a pension of about $150,000 a year, according to the pension payment formula.

    Murray did not return calls for comment, but he has said in the past that he works around the clock, and is always on call to set bail for suspects and review warrants.

    Examining pay, benefits

    Double dipping is a practice that is increasingly drawing the attention of state lawmakers.

    “That’s ridiculous — it really is,” said state Sen. Stephen M. Sweeney, D-Gloucester, of Murray’s eight part-time jobs. “Honestly, it’s a way of getting away with pensions for part-time employees. We need to look at: Is it really right for part-time workers to be in the pension system?”

    Sweeney, the Senate majority leader, said he believes that lawmakers this year will closely examine government employee pay and benefits.

    “I think you are going to see a lot of legislators starting to step forward and talking about this kind of stuff,” Sweeney said. “It’s a much more crowded platform of people who want to talk about this, Republicans and Democrats.”

    Gov. Corzine has cut state workers by 2,000 since taking office in 2006, and he wants to reduce the 68,000 state workers by another 3,000 in his proposed 2008-09 budget.

    In February, Corzine asked members of the public to submit ideas on how to cut the cost of state government. But, based on the responses of more than 1,500 residents who e-mailed the governor, the public feels he hasn’t gone far enough.

    Many wrote that they felt government pay and benefits remain excessive.

    “Most importantly . . . CUT, CUT, CUT, CUT GOVERNMENT SPENDING AND THE DOUBLE & TRIPLE DIPPING OF PENSIONS!!” wrote Matthew J. Guiro, a 35-year-old mortgage banker from Brick.

    In Stafford, one of the eight municipalities where Murray presides, his contract requires him to hold court a minimum of 43 days a year. At a 2007 salary of $41,728, that’s just under $1,000 a day.

    “I can see people saying, can you hold eight part-time jobs?” said Carl W. Block, himself a multiple-job holder as Stafford mayor and Ocean County clerk. “That’s a fair point, and Damian is going to have to answer that question.”

    Gerard J. Meara, executive director of the AFSCME Council 73, which represents 11,000 government workers in New Jersey, said he opposed judges and others who accrue such high pensions based on many part-time jobs.

    “That type of person really isn’t an employee; they jump from one municipality to the other,” he said. “With the pension being underfunded, as it is, any negative impact such as that is a concern to our members.”

    The government employee with the most jobs in the pension systems is Mary E. Bakey, who held a dozen positions with school boards in Camden and Burlington counties last year. Her total reported base pay last year was $64,235.

    Bakey specializes in the niche position of “Treasurer of School Funds,” which, under state law dating to at least 1903, all school boards must have.

    The job is to double-check what, in nearly all cases, the school business office has already done: reconcile the district’s bank accounts. The law predates school business administrators, electronic funds transfers and book-balancing computer software.

    “It’s another set of eyes looking over your books,” said Joanne Clement, the school business administrator for the Clementon Board of Education in Camden County. Clementon hired Bakey two years ago, and paid her $1,750 in 2007.

    Bakey could not be reached for comment.

    To reduce school costs, Assemblyman Declan J. O’Scanlon Jr., R-Monmouth, has proposed a bill that would make the treasurer’s job optional. Both the New Jersey School Boards Association and the New Jersey Association of School Business Officials support the bill.

  82. joyce says:

    89
    We’re still in Iraq.

    baa

  83. Michael says:

    Sorry, just meant to post the following from that article.

    Take Damian G. Murray, the highest paid multiple-job holder in the state last year, according to pension records. He also keeps a private law office.

    A municipal court judge for eight Ocean County municipalities, his total taxpayer-funded pay was $301,826. The chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court is paid $212,100.

    When Murray, 59, retires from government service, his final pension will be based on the average of his highest three salaries. That could qualify him for a pension of about $150,000 a year, according to the pension payment formula.

    Murray did not return calls for comment, but he has said in the past that he works around the clock, and is always on call to set bail for suspects and review warrants.

  84. Michael says:

    89- Good point, it sure wasn’t spent on the soldiers salaries. What a joke!!! Trillions on what?

  85. Michael says:

    In Stafford, one of the eight municipalities where Murray presides, his contract requires him to hold court a minimum of 43 days a year. At a 2007 salary of $41,728, that’s just under $1,000 a day.

    “I can see people saying, can you hold eight part-time jobs?” said Carl W. Block, himself a multiple-job holder as Stafford mayor and Ocean County clerk. “That’s a fair point, and Damian is going to have to answer that question.”

  86. Michael says:

    We should send the oil corporations the bill for the Iraq war. Protecting their interests using tax dollars. Might be the worst form of welfare in America.

  87. Essex says:

    96. That ship has sailed but I get your point.

  88. Not Michael says:

    To be fair, all of these professional part timers, and elected officials now go on to a Def. Comp Plan 457 with a 3% match, instead of State Pension; also elected double office holders are prohibited, as well as only one job qualifies for pensions, other jobs and salaries over the annual Social Security Tax limit are 457 -3% match. Corzine changed the law. You do have plenty of people on it still because they were grandfathered.

    What you still have, but is much more difficult is playing the system, if you are connected and knowledgable about the system. Whether is the ability to gain the professional contract for several towns (each will give you health plans and 3% match into a 457 DCP. 457 are independent of 401k/SEP for retirment tax deferrals, so you get another way to put away 17,500 tax deferred). Or the ability to put yourself or family member in the police force at 18, and retire at 42 with 25 yrs service at 105,000+ a year pension, because you retired as a lieutenant in a very political town and you were connected from the beginning and easily rose through the ranks.

    The issue is this. In NJ people love the ability to call the mayor or know the local cop or to make sure other than town residents get harrased. This comes at a price, which is high taxes for very local control and it always leads to some corruption, because the reason for being of this arrangement is to make sure locals, better yet – connected locals get special treatment. If you regionalize, and make services efficient and lower the operational cost and its taxes required, you would kill this preferential system. But then you are going to be dealing with entities that are bureacratic and rigid because they have to be like that. Remember, a bureacratic entity is defined by the old motto ” we do favors for no one”, and people don’t want to hear this in NJ, they always think they are the exception and not the rule.

  89. Nothing will stop until a few of these double-dipping crooks come down with a sudden case of lead poisoning.

  90. Michael says:

    98- Well said, I couldn’t agree with you more. I never realized how out of control this is.

    99- Scrapple, I like where you are going with this. Sick to say, but I would have no problem doing this to these crooks.

  91. AG says:

    I just got pimped by Al Sharpton.

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  94. anon (the good one) says:

    anybody know where NOT Ragnar is?

  95. Essex says:

    MLK III vs. Hank III in cage match.

  96. Comrade Nom Deplume, knee jerk savant says:

    Wow. Just what we need. More lawyers, and stupider ones at that.

    http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2013/08/23/obama-says-law-school-should-be-two-years-not-three/?hp&_r=0

  97. anon (the good one) says:

    this is what happens when toddlers don’t carry.

    @Gothamist: Toddler Shot In The Head In Brooklyn http://t.co/2M9Ux4DXMp

  98. Comrade Nom Deplume, knee jerk savant says:

    Further to the educational debate

    http://www.cnbc.com/id/100982147

  99. Michael says:

    108- I think this comes down to companies wanting highly skilled employees, the best of the best, but not wanting to pay for it. It’s like the teaching field, we want the best and brightest, but we expect the best to settle for a 50,000 starting salary for ( which goes nowhere for 13 years) and top out around 100,000? Not going to happen. With that salary range, you can hopefully get some that are above avg but you are not ever going to get the best. You pay for what you get. America businesses want the Porsche at the price of a Kia. Not happening!

  100. Michael says:

    Most of the best and brightest won’t even work for someone anymore. They rather open a business and take advantage of these cheap wage market we have going in America right now. Plenty of workers you can take advantage of right now based on market fundamentals of high unemployment. The govt should get rid of unemployment so that we can see the real shit show begin, imagine how low the wages would get with so many people fighting over the limited number of jobs. I guess you think of unemployment as a small buffer to a downward (deflation) spiral of wages and prices of goods.

  101. HouseWhineWine says:

    109. In the job market you will get plenty of top qualified applicants for teaching jobs. But they won’t stay in the field once better opportunities arise. Or once the economy turns around. So you might get a few good years out of them. Look at the rate at which newer teachers leave the field, even now with this crummy job market.

  102. Michael says:

    111- The best evidence to support your claim is teach for America program. They do 1 to 2 years and are out for greener pastures. Also, look at the turnover rate for teachers. It’s the highest out there. Who wants to be held accountable and at the same time get crummy pay to teach kids. If you baby-sit 10 kids at 20 dollars a day, you will make more money than a teacher and you don’t even have to teach them.

  103. yome says:

    I know of two new education graduate. One still unemployed and the other went South Korea to teach English. $30, 000 a year in State and cant get a job never mind the $40, 000 a year out of state student that cant get a job.Every young girls my kid went with wants to be a teacher.

  104. anon (the good one) says:

    @NewsBreaker: WEEKEND VIOLENCE: Girl, 11, and Boy, 16, Among 6 Shot Overnight in Chicago http://t.co/CfoqOARORx – @nbcchicago

  105. Michael says:

    113- nom, thanks for sharing the article. Great piece!!! Love an article with a positive outlook on the economy. I didn’t finish reading it, but when I do, I will surely comment on it.

  106. Ben says:

    I know of two new education graduate. One still unemployed and the other went South Korea to teach English. $30, 000 a year in State and cant get a job never mind the $40, 000 a year out of state student that cant get a job.Every young girls my kid went with wants to be a teacher.

    That has very little to do with the college education and more to do with a saturated market. English and History majors looking to teach are facing a huge battle as every job opening yields hundreds of applicants (that’s not an exaggeration). When a teacher position is in other fields like Physics or Chemistry, there are 3 or 4 applicants at most.

  107. Anon E. Moose says:

    Anon [107];

    I’ll be anxiously awaiting your report that the gun used in the crime was legally purchased and permitted, and fired by its rightful owner. Waiting… Still waiting… Anything yet? No, huh? Well, i can wait…

  108. Anon E. Moose says:

    Anon [116];

    Chicago obviously needs stricter gun control laws to prevent such atrocities from happening.

  109. Arm the children. It is their last hope.

  110. What the f#^k else is there to do in North Korea? Seems to me that meth is a perfectly legit pastime for a country like that.

    “Perhaps in an effort to numb themselves of the daily grind of a delusional dictator amid widespread starvation, North Koreans have turned en masse to the ‘bingdu’ or ice. As the WSJ notes, a study in the Spring of 2013 found that “Almost every adult in that area (of North Korea) has experienced using ice and not just once,” and the author noted that “at least 40% to 50% are seriously addicted to the drug.” Unsurprisingly for the closed nation, there is no official data, but as poppy fields disappeared in the nation, meth dealers were quick to step in and ‘Heisenberg’ the people’s needs. Now “doing ice is a social thing; it is a lot of fun,” as the ‘epidemic’ has spread from mid-ranking officials and police officers in 2004-2008 to the general population of students and youth now.”

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2013-08-25/breakim-bad-40-50-north-koreans-seriously-addicted-meth

  111. Guns and meth for the children. We owe them no less.

  112. Comrade Nom Deplume, knee jerk savant says:

    [122] scrapple,

    The children are armed.

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