Saturday, June 20, 2009

Tony Pivetta is your H.R. contact for questions relating to salary administration, workers compensation and retirement benefits. My salary administration responsibilities aim at ensuring the competitiveness of the Hospital’s pay structures and policies. I monitor our workers compensation claims to controls costs while protecting the rights of employees injured on the job. Retirement benefits include those disbursed by the 401(k) and pension plans. You may or may not have a pension benefit, as that plan was frozen in 2003.

Your retirement benefits have tanked in the wake of special interests’ raiding the public bourse and coaxing the Federal Reserve Bank’s monetary “quantitative easing” (read: counterfeiting) to relieve them of risky loans and freely assumed debt burdens. I draw dark parallels between the rise of this kind of legalized racketeering and the demise of the Grand Old Game. Call me the Rusty Girder to the forsaken baseball stadium.

For baseball, as historians and philosophers have long noted, holds the key to the American character. The individualist intersects with the communitarian; each player does good for his team by doing well for himself. This ethos of free association and exchange likewise animated the founding of the American republic. Not so the land of the flea and home of the knave! Today, wealthy baseball team owners stick taxpayers with the cost of building new stadiums—and in a mind-boggling display of chutzpah, expect us to sing hosannas if they pick up the short end of their own tab!

Not so long ago, baseball could still lay claim to its exalted status. Natural grass, quirky stadiums (not the cookie-cutter corporate-welfare monstrosities of today) and the pitcher’s place in the batting order ensured the game’s integrity and continuity with the past.

Not so long ago, undeclared war and diminishing civil liberties still sparked controversy and dissent. As goes baseball, alas, so goes the Constitution.



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