When did public schools become "bad"? And did the quality actually change, or are statements about the inferiority of public education the racist shibboleths I've come to assume that they are? [more inside]
Is there a company that I can pay to film a video of someone walking behind Paul Ryan ringing a bell and yelling "Shame!"? [more inside]
I just found out my beloved program, Community HealthCorps, is de-funded. What can I and the rest of my cohort do to organize to get this program reinstated? [more inside]
I'm looking for examples of small-to-medium sized U.S. cities and towns that are known for having exceedingly radical city governments (whether left- or right-wing). What have these governments done that makes them considered radical? What obstacles have they faced in attempting to implement their policies?
Hey Brilliants, I hope you are all enjoying the beginning of spring! I am researching a new project on secession and am looking for examples in literature, film, tv, etc. of stories that are about a US state or city trying to secede from the union. I'm somewhat aware of Texas' ability to secede but am wondering if anyone has written anything about what would happen if another state or city tried to secede. Thanks so much :) [more inside]
I've noticed that websites for many NPR stations are using the same template. But I can't find a company that is common to the templates. There are names at the bottom of some sites but there isn't one name for all sites. Is this part of an NPR requirement that all member websites have a "corporate" identity? Some cabinet level agencies within the Federal Government went through a rebranding program in the early 2000s which included making individually designed websites adopt a organization wide look and I wonder if this is what is happening with public radio stations. [more inside]
What are fun ways to learn how various parts of the current US federal government work and get things done? As a federal employee, I'm curious to get a better picture of my gigantic complex employer and millions of coworkers. For example, this might be learning about interactions between congresspeople, how White House projects happen, or how a particular agency works. This could be a documentary, a book, a movie or TV show, an academic journal article, a formal training of some kind, or something else. [more inside]
Is there a historical/systematic reason that homeowners in cities are responsible for the upkeep of the sidewalks, but not the public roads outside their homes? [more inside]
What industries or business segments only exist, or only largely exist, because a group or groups interested in maintaining a particular industry have encouraged or supported laws requiring or strongly supporting their industries' existence? [more inside]
I'm trying to decide whether to leave a cushy but very frustrating government job for one at a private firm. [more inside]
The US military follows a time honored tradition of retiring and destroying damaged US flags. That protocol is outlined in US Code, Title 4, Chapter 1 which (link) outlines the disposing of such flags in a manner that shows respect for the flag and the service it has provided. Yet, I frequently see people flying very damaged flags in very prominent locations. [more inside]
Does the U.S. government publish data about economic growth by sector AND by metro area? I am trying to compile some data for the economic outlook of a city/metro area. Essentially I want something like the BLS's job outlook numbers for different career fields, but localized to specific metro areas. Does this exist somewhere? [more inside]
I am teaching a college-level introductory government class and need to include content about the Founding Fathers and their views on government. My expertise is in environmental law/policy, which is where most of the class will focus, but I do need to cover the traditional constitution-writing, independence-declaring stuff as well. I already have readings (from Zinn, and also a mainstream textbook) but I would like a compelling video about the founding fathers - and, hopefully, their disparate and conflicting viewpoints - to round out our first week. I was thinking of PBS or something like that, but I'm having a hard time finding anything that is 1) long enough, 2) not too long (>60 minutes), and 3) college level. Any ideas?
I'm going to be receiving my master's degree(hopefully) this coming January. I recently saw a job that I think I would be a great fit for on usajobs.com, but I'm not sure if it is worth it to apply if I won't really be able to start until Jan. Anyone have experience of a similar situation or know how long the hiring process usually takes?
This isn't a question about how to be a tourist in Cuba, but rather about how risky it might be to go there for a professional meeting (a sanctioned reason) and then bend the rules a bit. [more inside]
If you were to measure whether things are getting better or worse in a country, what metrics would you use?
Today my partner was offered a full-time position in a federal government agency where he has been participating in an internship type of program for college students. He isn't sure if he should accept it or not. [more inside]
Aren't they both congressionally mandated? How did this come about? They are not private, Congress sets the rules (like Saturday mail delivery) Isn't this like standing on someone's feet and asking why don't you run faster? Where is the line between a private business operating for profit; and a government /public service that may benefit society? Is that benefit a 'profit'?
I am desperate for answers at this point. I've paid nearly a thousand dollars to have my resume customized for the [AWFUL] USAJobs website. I have worked in the federal government for ten years now, for two different agencies. But I have been absolutely STALLED the past 2.5 years in a job from hell. (I am currently in an organization in which EVERYONE is jumping ship, literally every week someone else has gotten a job. It feels like we are on the Titanic. We were basically told the organization has no future and if we want any type of promotion, we will need to find new jobs. Hence, people are swimming away for dear life. The rest of us are DYING here!) This question is for anyone who is familiar with the USAJobs website and has obtained some measure of success with utilizing it in your career. [more inside]
About nine months ago, I applied for a spot with the federal government, which was in line with what I previously did as a paralegal. I got a call back amazingly quickly -- but the hiring manager pointed out that someone with my unusual last name also worked in the office, and it turned out to be my step-mother-in-law. (I knew she did that type of work but I had no idea it was with that agency.) The hiring manager still wanted to interview me. I agreed to set-up an interview during that phone call, talked it over with my husband, and, the next day, emailed the hiring manager and said I was withdrawing my candidacy, to avoid the perception of impropriety. And then snowflakes fell. Details inside. [more inside]
I've moved to Vermont. How do I become an official resident?
I was homeless for part of the year last year. I'm filing late (with deferral, sorry I didn't bring this up on Askmefi when it would be more pertinent) because I just now got all the proper info together. Is there anything I should know about filing US taxes for a year in which I was occasionally homeless and/or unemployed?
I started volunteering for a group that advocates for a revenue neutral carbon tax. Their main strategies for trying to achieve this goal are: 1) develop relationships with members of congress ("we're betting the ranch on relationships" is one of their unofficial slogans) 2) write letters to the editor and 3) get lots of people to write letters to their congressmen. Is this an effective approach? If not what else could we be doing? Thanks everybody and happy Earth Day! [more inside]
Severnaya Zemlya, Krasnoyarsk Krai, Russia is censored on Google Maps. Anybody know why? Here it is: link
Hi MetaFilter, Putting it out for the group to help me weigh the pro's and con's of a career move. I am 44 years old, marketing professional with 10 years experience in health care marketing communication. I recently got my MBA last year and got recruited to go to another large Chicago health care system. The new job pays more and is OK but we are going through a reorg and merger and my position will change going forward. My current boss is leaving the organization and said that he is putting me forward for a better position with more responsibility going into the reorg but it is hard to trust that this will happen since that is all going to be in flux. About a month ago I applied for a federal marketing communication project manager position with the General Services Administration at the Federal Acquisition Service and this past Friday I was offered the job as a GS-13 Step One and they want my answer on Monday. [more inside]
I'm a federal employee working in California. I just had an anxiety attack at work. I think I need space to regroup mentally and emotionally. What options are open to me? [more inside]
While exploring the woods this past weekend, I spotted a unique item near the river. [more inside]
Is there any research that compares the number of indictments by Grand Juries of public servants and/or government officials versus indictments by Grand Juries of non public servants and/or non government officials?
Looking for MeFites with knowledge of the (FAR) federal acquisition regulations. After 18 years of invoicing the goverment for travel as a contractor and now subcontractor, a new auditor is saying I cannot charge for flights that do not orginate and end at a home airport. No one has ever said this before. Can someone tell me where this is referenced in the 1000+ pages of the FAR.
I've been searching but my searching has been for naught. Is there a term for a law or laws that are passed that are originally unpopular but then becomes indispensable or even popular? Like affirmative action or income tax or the 19th amendment? [more inside]
The Bavarian lodges. The Rothschilds. The Trilateral Commission. It's all so dated. Who are the new people behind the curtain running things? The gay mafia? Google? Some shadowy NSA subgroup? I'm trying to make a list.
I just landed a really exciting position as a policy analyst/lobbyist for a non-profit which does work I believe in. I want to hit the ground running. What do I need to know? (Difficulty level: I have never worked in policy/lobbying before.) [more inside]
I need a visa for a work trip from the United States to Brazil and am slightly punch-drunk from bureaucracy. Please help me by confirming whether I'm reading these requirements right, or not. [more inside]
I work in state government and my position may soon shift to policy analysis, which would include writing and revising policies, procedures, and regulations. I have plenty of experience researching regulations, but not as much in the areas of writing and revising. Can anyone recommend any resources (books or websites) which may be helpful for this type of writing? Thank you! [more inside]
My office has an opening for a supervisor. They've decided that since things move slowly in our organization (government), before selecting someone permanent for the job, it will be opened up to the office and anyone interested can serve in the position for four weeks to "get full sense of the responsibilities." I'm interested in the job for a few reasons but concerned about the pitfalls of being a supervisor for merely four weeks. [more inside]
I've heard (or read) that SEPTA is actively planning to extend service to several towns/regions, but there's nothing about it on the SEPTA website nor on county government sites. [more inside]
I recently applied for and am now actively being considered for a legal assistant/senior case technician position with the federal government (Social Security Administration). The job description sounds a lot like what I used to do as a paralegal (reviewing records, analyzing cases, making recommendations for further action, contacting medical providers), but I'm worried that what I've actually applied for is a secretarial position (e.g., making travel arrangements, maintaining calendars, hanging out a copy machine a lot, collating and binding copies). [more inside]
I have long heard/read that the US has not one but two leaders -- of equal rank --- in any foreign capital, namely the ambassador and the CIA station chief. The NY Times seems to confirm this. Can you point me to other confirmation?
My grandfather was born in Pennsylvania to Italian parents during the 1920s in Lackawanna County / Scranton. I was able to obtain a new birth certificate from the PA Dept of Vital Records, but the last name was misspelled. When I called about this, they could only tell me that the mis-spelling "was what it said on the birth certificate". How do I go about seeing the original to get the mistake corrected? [more inside]
I've built a website that combines all state constitutions in one place. I want to build another website that puts all state laws in one place. But state laws change much more often than state constitutions. And although states make their laws available online (usually in the form of revised statutes), their word count greatly exceeds the total word count of state constitution. It took six months to build the state constitutions website. [more inside]
In Rebecca Solnit's latest LRB piece on San Francisco's tensions around the tech boom there, she makes an unsourced reference about "Google set[ting] itself up with the help of a $4.5 million dollar government subsidy". The LRB is very respectable but this claim seems a bit wobbly. Perhaps my Google Google-fu is failing me but I can't find a reference or more detail for this claim online. All I get is very vague and untrustworthy CIA funding conspiracy theories on tinfoil hat crank sites. I can't find anything re: that $4.5m figure. Solnit likely may not mean the CIA at all but some other kind of government subsidy. Can the MeFi hive mind help factcheck this claim? Are there reliable sources with more detail on this?
What is in a job title? What partnership building jobs exist in the public and nonprofit sectors? [more inside]
I'm charged with delivering a letter from a group of sexual assault prevention experts to the newly formed White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault. The task force only exists for 90 days, so time is of the essence, yet I can't find a way to contact them. [more inside]
Can anyone recommend some good sources to learn about the current political situation in Thailand? [more inside]
Do you live or know of neat places in Illinois, Missouri and Indiana that my explorer/photographer friend could visit? Let me know! [more inside]
Are older phones or phones designed for poorer countries any less susceptible to spying than the latest Apple, Google or Android models? I've read about CEO's looking for the very old brick phones because since they don't have the sophisticated technology of the modern phones, they're harder to monitor or track. I understand the phones w/o apps are clearly more secure regarding third parties because they aren't sending personal data to companies. But what the government and everything else; voice, location via cell towers, SMS; the very basics.
Soooo...my name is Siobhan. However, the typist for my birth certificate spelled it Siobahn, which means my legal name is misspelled. It's not an alternate spelling, like Suzanne/Susanne. It's just wrong. I called Vital Statistics in PA and the woman there said I have to pay for a name change via a lawyer. I explained it was a typo, not a name change. Am I looking at several hundred bucks to fix this or is there something else I can do? I use the correct spelling for everything except legal stuff and bills. It's just getting to be annoying and I want to get this fixed the cheapest way possible. [more inside]
Other than right of conquest or inheritance, how does one become a king? I'm particularly interested in people who became kings by election or acclaim. Historical examples, please! [more inside]
I remember hearing about a restaurant with dishes named after city organizations. For example, the "department of sanitation sandwich" or the "FDNY sandwich." It is probably in NYC. It may have shut down. Can you help me find this restaurant?
On a recent trip to South Africa, I was fascinated to learn about Helen Suzman, "the sole parliamentarian unequivocally opposed to apartheid for thirteen years from 1961 to 1974." It reminded me of Barbara Lee's solo "no" vote on the post-9/11 war powers authorization in the U.S., and I'm now curious: What other examples are there of legislators or similar figures who have taken a deeply unpopular stand and (I know this may be contentious) been borne out by history?