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2014-02-28 - 6:21 p.m.

Friday night and I am home relaxing after the busy week of traveling to and from Norfolk to finally take the exam. I think I did well and passed it this time, but time will tell.

Super tired. Just as I was falling asleep to take an afternoon nap the phone rang. Ce la vie.

I am too tired to write now. Going to likely just grab a can of Campbell's soup or maybe Dinty Moore Beef stew and eat it for supper, then enjoy finish reading the novel I picked up
Archipelago which is just fantastic.

I really enjoyed visiting Norfolk the day after the exam. As I took the train I couldn't get out of the city until 3pm the day after taking the test so went to see the show MLK on the Mountaintop on Thu night at the Wells Theater put on by the Virginia Stage Company which was really very good. (That is except for the part where they had technical difficulty and I couldn't understand how the techie's didn't realize it is just a SIN TO STOP THE ACTORS. I mean this is professional theater- just let the mishap go by and let the actors continue with their amazing performance and do without the icing as we the audience were totally in the world they were creating just wonderfully UNTIL you stopped the show and then apologized while fixing the technical difficulty. It's hard sometimes however for folks to let go of their attachment to THEIR work and see the whole and recognize it would have been better to let the show go on without the wonderful lighting and visual affects as THE ACTING WAS STRONG ENOUGH. Ce La vie...but it was disappointing. People often get too attached to their little puzzle piece to see the big picture.)

Other than the interruption, the show really was a perfect end to the day of taking the BAR EXAM as a good reminder of why I wanted to go to law school in the first place.

Between that and the PBS show the night before on the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire which ignited labor reforms across America, if I don't get a job soon in the corporate world I might be inclined to seriously delve into the issue of why the labor movement has lost teeth and is impotent today. I would love to try to see if there IS any way to revive it to become meaningful and impactful in our society today which could STILL use major reforms.

I studied that extensively in law school. Legislation has rendered strikes ineffective and they were in fact the only tool that the Labor Movement actually had to successfully compel change, short of actual tragedy waking people up.

Conditions for the American worker did improve prior to that happening, but I see labor issues becoming critical in our economy fueled by temporary workers without benefits which is a startling trend among companies for professional workers. Ironically I noticed it among HR workers as they seem to be the group hired on contract sent out the door on a rotating cycle every 10 months or so. YES those trained to believe in corporate policies that interest employers. Those are the very workers being given only contract work without benefits. This became a concern after I was fired and hit up by headhunters every week for months for what was CLEARLY MY OLD JOB. I mean the description was EXACT. BULL SHIT that I was fired "for cause" when the evidence shows there was a desire to hire a temp contract worker for one year only for a "project". (Not to mention the BS of that "for cause" clearly exposed by the fact the state of VA had to investigate and I HAVE been receiving unemployment payments which will ONLY be given when one if let go for reasons OTHER than legal "cause". ) So after hiring a contract manager on for a project, and having it done in 12 months and wrapping it up, the person will be let go. Then after a few months ANOTHER contract manager will be hired for the next "project" without benefits or longevity of employment. This is a trend in all professional work today.

Its a startling trend as I watch an attorney on contract jobs told there is a critical need to prepare discovery for their client when working temp document review gigs, so this week there is a "mandatory 60 hour floor and a 70 hour ceiling".

Unless the attorney I am dating is lying and having some wonderful affair and doesn't want to be upfront about his time being spent elsewhere( which I don't suspect...just joking...) Well this trend is one that I think is really disturbing when I see an attorney of his skill not able to find a job other than contract work at $35 or $45 per hour without any benefits.

Now there may not be any sympathy for one making that dollar per hour in some places, but here in Northern VA where the cost of living is so very high that barely meets subsistence level.

And this is for professional skilled labor that large corporations are going to benefit from tremendously!

Cheap labor is becoming a trend in upper management and professional jobs from HR, to accountants, to lawyers, to engineers.

So I was happy to be reminded of why I focused on Labor and Immigration Law in law school by the American Experience show on PBS. Here is the info on the Fire that was so tragic it did have the largest impact on worker's rights of any event in U.S. History:

And I am pondering the question of what is the place of organized labor in the U.S.? It had at one time become a mob controlled corrupt organization itself which made the impotence it was already struggling from due to laws that destroyed the viability of an effective strike. ( Had my memory been better I would KNOW the case... my guess is of course Longshoremen...most of the impactful decisions did take place out in San Fran in response to the dock workers unions.)

One of my co-workers wrote a terrific article on why the labor union movement was dead and why there was no longer any sympathy when there were strikers at my company just a few years ago and I was glad to get the overtime working as a scab. Why is that, that even I would not hesitate to pick up the work while someone else went on the picket line?

Simply because I like so many shifted my priority when I had kids to ensure there is a roof over their heads and food on their table in MY HOME where I can raise them to the extent allowed. After having rights in relation to my parenting taken away and the constant attack on me- I really did hit the bottom of the hierarchy of needs at some point.

At some point I lost faith. That really is true.

So it was good to see both of those, along with a Frontline special on the Catholic Church corruption under Pope Benedict. To Frontline's credit, they really captured the former pope's gentleness and compassion and the fact he just was a holy man who was prayerful and sincere yet not a strong enough LEADER to take the helm (along with the terrible tragedy of the subsequent abuse that went unchecked for years). He just continued to trust his team and the vile abuses were not addressed proactively enough (OR REACTIVELY ENOUGH) due to his own inability to be a strong leader. That was a fascinating show as it too shows how loss of faith in organizations does occur- and also shows how important it is to not give up and to harness what little belief is left so as to rise from the impotence and become vibrant and meaningful again as the Catholic Church under Frances is now doing.

Talk about being brought back to my roots. All that in the two nights of the taking of the BAR EXAM.

It felt like I was being led to my own personal mountaintop.

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