By Leigh Beadon
This week, our first place winner on the insightful side is an anonymous commenter responding to some questions about the Ohio workers the government wants companies to snitch on:
This is regular workers in non-social-distanced workplaces. They will have spent the past few weeks unemployed, collecting unemployment because they’ve been laid off at the choice of their employer (at the direction of the State).
Now, without requiring workplaces to be adapted for social distancing, Ohio is asking for workers to go back to potentially dangerous, un-social-distanced workplaces. The workers refusing to go back into work are doing so, in their opinion, because their employer is refusing to provide a safe workplace, and thus are unemployed at the behest of their employer until such time as the employer wishes to provide a safe workplace for them to return to. This is (perhaps) a valid reason to continue collecting unemployment.
The lockdown certainly implied that workplaces that could not provide social distancing were unsafe, and thus that was a valid reason for their initial unemployment.
Ohio are saying that it’s not a valid reason and that by refusing to return to an unsafe workplace the employee has quit voluntarily.
From there, I suppose it’s really up to the reader whether they think it’s an employer’s duty to provide a reasonably SARS-CoV-2 workplace.
‘Oh no, is the floor okay?’
Thing is, if they are trying to get that data I can’t really find it in myself to get upset. We’re talking about a data related to a global pandemic, data that should be shared freely in order to better address the mounting death toll, not locked up to protect company profits or used to score political points.
When lives are literally on the line and the body count is already massive anyone who looks at that and thinks ‘How can I use this for my benefit?’ absolutely deserves to get slapped down, and if that includes governments then so be it.
Ain’t no maybe about it, baby. If an employer says an employee must return to the job, but refuses to offer anything in the way of safety protocols/PPE that will reasonably protect the employee from COVID-19, that employee has a good goddamn reason to collect unemployment. Anyone who thinks otherwise should look at the current number of COVID-19 cases — and deaths — as the best justification for the paranoia around working during a global pandemic.
Next, it’s Thad digging into the differences between the Streisand Effect and what Devin Nunes is doing:
No, this is different.
The Streisand Effect is when someone tries to cover up something they don’t want people to know and calls more attention to it in the process.
That’s not what Nunes is trying to do. This is once of a series of performative lawsuits designed with a couple of purposes in mind:
Feed a victim narrative during an election year — “look at how these evil liberals have targeted me; please donate to my reelection campaign.”
Intimidate his critics. Even though these lawsuits are meritless, they’re going to be expensive and bothersome to the defendants, and will make other small press outlets think twice before they criticize him.
He’s not actually trying to suppress these stories. He’s only pretending to.
He promptly unlocked his phone and removed the passcode upon upon being asked for it by law enforcement I trust?
Jeffrey may have revealed more about Quibi than he meant to reveal with that.
For editor’s choice on the funny side, we’ve got a pair of nods to Thad again, who was in a quoting mood with sharp instincts it seems. First, there’s a response to the question of who in their right mind would hire Richard Liebowitz:
The only export of NowWhat is the NowWhattian boghog skin, which no one in their right minds would want to buy because it’s thin and very leaky, and the export trade only manages to survive because of the significant number of people in the Galaxy who are not in their right minds.
– Douglas Adams
And next, another response to Katzenberg and Quibi, this time in the form of a popular meme cited as simple text, but which I have replaced here with the real deal:
That’s all for this week, folks!