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Blowing smoke

Let me make it clear, before I begin: I don't smoke. I never have, never will. I think that people who smoke are self-destructive idiots who dont' give a rat's ass about the annoyance they cause others and the burden they inflict on their loved ones with their addiction. I wholeheartedly agree with the old aphorisms that "kissing a smoker is like licking an ashtray" and a cigarette is best described as "a fire on one end and a fool on the other."

That being said, I am appalled by this story in the news today.

In brief: a lawn-care company instituted a strict no-smoking policy. Workers were not allowed to light up while on the clock. But that wasn't far enough, and soon workers weren't allowed to smoke at all -- not even on their own time, far away from the job site. During a drug screening, one guy tested positive for nicotine and was fired. He's now suing.

I have no problems with employers enforcing strict codes of conduct on its employees while they're on the clock -- in fact, I expect it. They also have a right to regulate off-work behavior, but only as it affects their work performance. For example, if a guy drinks heavily, that's his business -- until he shows up drunk or too hung over to work.

But until it affects the work, it's none of the company's goddamned business what they do in their off-time.

The principle is simple: while you're on the clock, you are the company's person. Once you're off the clock, you're on your own. So unless the Scott Company wants to back-pay Mr. Rodrigues for the 128 hours of each week he isn't working for them, they have no right to fire him for smoking on his own time.


Comments (55)

I agree that it is ridiculo... (Below threshold)
Larry Jordan:

I agree that it is ridiculous to fire someone for smoking but barring a contract, I believe we work at the pleasure of our employers and they have a right to terminate employment at any time for any reason, or for no reason at all, just as the employee has the right to quit at any time.

The article cited seems to ... (Below threshold)
mcg:

The article cited seems to imply that the employer was paying for health care for its employees. In that case, a credible case could be made that off-the-job smoking impacts their bottom line through increased health insurance premiums. If that is the case, I frankly think they're justified.

Of course, one could argue that eating excessive amounts of fatty foods increases health care costs too. But for better or worse, health insurance specifically identifies smoking as a risk factor and boosts premiums to compensate.

The solution of course is simple: allow employers to pass the smoking premiums onto those employees that need it.

As the comment above indica... (Below threshold)
observer 5:

As the comment above indicates, this will be an interesting fault line. It will place "conservatives" who believe that corporations should be able to do whatever they want in common cause with nanny-state liberals who believe that we should all be made to do what is healthy.

Those conservatives and liberals who believe that corporate and state power to limit individual freedom will be on the other side.

Next in line---BOOZE. That ... (Below threshold)
jhow66:

Next in line---BOOZE. That way the boss gets to fire himself!!!

At will employment is at wi... (Below threshold)
Pete:

At will employment is at will employment.

...and if they were paying for health care, it seems to me like they have a legit reason to fire him.

If you don't like your "no smoking" job, quit.

Most health care plans have... (Below threshold)
the wolf:

Most health care plans have separate costs for tobacco users vs. non-tobacco users.

That said, there is nothing in the article that indicates that this was a health care issue. The company spokesman says, rather enigmatically, that "They're irrefutably doing things that harm themselves and they're asking us to pay for that." Not sure exactly what he means by that. This sounds like a company that is overstepping its bounds.

I have no problems... (Below threshold)
pennywit:
I have no problems with employers enforcing strict codes of conduct on its employees while they're on the clock -- in fact, I expect it. They also have a right to regulate off-work behavior, but only as it affects their work performance. For example, if a guy drinks heavily, that's his business -- until he shows up drunk or too hung over to work.

I disagree with you slightly. I would also throw in "conduct that affects the company's reputation." Including, for example, if you end up with a drunk driving conviction (on your own time) and you're, say, the manager of your employer's main factory in the community, and therefore the company's "face" there.

--|PW|--

When it comes right down to... (Below threshold)
Pete:

When it comes right down to it, the company has the "right" to impose any sort of off-the-clock code of conduct they want as long as it doesn't infringe on any constitutional or statutory protections, and smokers are not a protected class of people.

I'm not sure what sort of "bounds" are allegedly being crossed here, but it's pretty simple: if you want to smoke, go work for someone who allows it.

Let's not forget the irony ... (Below threshold)
anne:

Let's not forget the irony here---the guy was fired for possibly smoking after hours...

by a lawn mowing company.

Unless those lawn mowers were electric, they were spewing out roughly the same amount of air pollution in a day as a car does in a month, not to mention the sound pollution.

Wow, so much support for fi... (Below threshold)
LJD:

Wow, so much support for firing smokers.

Next in line:

Those who drink ANY amount,
Those taking prescription drugs,
ANY other pre-existing condition,
overweight people,
diabetics,
people of a certain race particularly prone to certain diseases,
GAYS!,
etc. etc. etc.

Smokers need to establish a... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

Smokers need to establish a religion in which smoking is an integral part. This would be similar to religions that require wearing certain items, eating or refraining from certain foods, and praying certain times of the day. The rules of what defines a religion are not hard to meet and once the religion is established it will be much harder for employers and even governments to infringe the smoking behavior of the religion's members.

Maybe one of the resident atheists could set up this religion and make a lot of money in the process.

Don't be silly...</p... (Below threshold)
Pete:


Don't be silly...

> Those who drink ANY amount,

Fine. No problem. Don't like it? Work elsewhere. Someone is going to hire all of the good drinkers. Besides, I guarantee that someone is already doing this.

> Those taking prescription drugs,

Aside from likely being ruled illegally discriminatory (disability protection), this is highly impractical.

> ANY other pre-existing condition,

Okay, but it's impractical and would probably be a PR nightmare.

> overweight people, diabetics,

Never happen -- even worse PR nightmare.

> people of a certain race particularly prone to certain diseases, GAYS!,

Both illegal already.

Observer 5 and LJD and are ... (Below threshold)
cmd:

Observer 5 and LJD and are on the right track. The issue here is simple:

Does an employer have the right to dictate your behavior in the privacy of your home? Yes or no.

If yes - where does the line stop? Is it merely a "health care cost" issue? If so, then please explain why the company cannot also forbid you from other behaviors or activities that carry a health risk such as eating fast food (higher incidence of obesity and heart attacks), using various prescription drugs with a track record of injurious side effects (such as birth control pills and the incidence of breast cancer), monitor / forbid alcohol intake (possibility of drunk driving), being an active homosexual (possible HIV from unprotected sex) or being a horndog (STDs).

If no - congratulations. You still have an understanding of liberty and privacy.

Oh, and BTW - anyone wishing to respond to this should refrain from throwing "secondhand smoke" junk science statistics into this thread. That nonsense is about as scientifically valid as the global warming cult.

Nice pithy responses, there... (Below threshold)
cmd:

Nice pithy responses, there, Pete, but it all boils down to "I don't like messy smokers, and they won't fight back when I bully them, unlike the lavender mafia and the fatties and the Viagra junkies. So smokers can f**k off."

In a way, it's refreshing to see people just coming right out and embracing discrimination when it suits them.

What struck me is how the e... (Below threshold)
Mark:

What struck me is how the executive freely admitted to smoking cigars but he is not punished. That seems to be a double standard to me.

So if my vegetarian boss de... (Below threshold)
hermie:

So if my vegetarian boss decides to fire me because a ate a Big Mac, that would be OK because putting that evil beef inside me doesn't fit his philosophy of what is 'good' for me?

Or maybe another boss doesn't like my intake of white flour-based food, or that I ate a Hershey bar on the weekend.

I am not a smoker but back ... (Below threshold)
UncleZeb:

I am not a smoker but back when I worked construction I learned to carry a pack because of breaks. If a non-smoker took a break we were reprimanded and I was once fired for "leaning" on my shovel while all the smokers were standing next to me smoking. They were not even spoken too. Thats when I bought my "break" pack. I have seen too many times where smokers were given some slack and actually cut into production.

Plus it stinks.

So I guess you also oppose ... (Below threshold)
Brandon:

So I guess you also oppose city ordinances banning smoking at private establishments?

Yeah, I hate those bans, too. And they make about as much sense as this policy by this lawn care company.

cmd: what about the "libert... (Below threshold)
Pete:

cmd: what about the "liberty" of an employer to hire and fire whoever they want?

And what about the "freedom" of an employee who doesn't like the rules at work to GO SOMEWHERE ELSE?

hermie: Yes. That's exactly right.


The invisible had fixes this so-called "problem" -- it works like this:

If employers fire, or refuse to hire, a member of a certain class (smokers, for instance) who are qualified, they will suffer a disadvantage in the market to employers who hire the best employees regardless of their personal habits.

If everyone in a given market refuses to hire people of that class, someone will come in, hire up all of the smokers and have one heck of a business... even if the break room reeks.


...and anyone who wants to start with the slippery slope... let's look at the other side of the coin: at what point CAN someone's out of work behavior effect their firing (and what does that do to so-called 'at will' employment)? When the employer can mathematically prove an impact on a bottom line? When the act done outside of work is illegal? When it could embarrass the company? When it DOES embarass the company? Never?

"Freedom" means being able to do as you please... it does not mean being able to do as you please with no consequences. People are more than willing to smoke... but that action might have consequences.

Not that I'm firing any of ... (Below threshold)

Not that I'm firing any of the smokers that work for me, but a bunch of you are sounding just like a bunch of whiny democrats... you too, Jay.

Since when did conservatives get to the point of wanting to have government protect us from all the things we don't like, including our big heartless employers? What ever happened to the idea that the option for someone who didn't like the terms of their employment was to quit and go find work elsewhere?

And since when did conservatives (or, at a minimum, conservative leaning types) think it's okay to do more than the absolute minimum at restricting an employer's ability to run his/her business the way they want? What do you all want next, for the courts to ban NBA teams from prohibiting their players from riding motorcycles after games and to ban companies from firing their CEO when they find out he hangs out at strip clubs in his spare time?

An employer ought to be able to hire the people he/she feels brings the most value to the organization. And if they feel that a smoker, even one who only smokes off hours, is a lousy deal, then they ought to be able to not hire such a person. We may not like what the employer does, but we're supposed to respect their right to do so.

this will likely be ruled d... (Below threshold)
w:

this will likely be ruled discriminatory...lol

my prediction...a good lawyer will prove that smokers are addicts and suffering from some form of brain chemistry disability...that this guy can't be fired because of the Americans with Disabilities Act and then this guy will get a huge payoff because he was discriminated against because of his disability

'let's look at the other si... (Below threshold)
LJD:

'let's look at the other side of the coin: at what point CAN someone's out of work behavior effect their firing'

Never, unless they get arrested and have their name in the paper, or their behavior affects their work performance.

Pete- you scare the hell out of me. Since when is it any of your employers business WHAT you do off hours? What do you want, company cameras installed in your house?

'An employer ought to be ab... (Below threshold)
LJD:

'An employer ought to be able to hire the people he/she feels brings the most value to the organization. And if they feel that a _____, even one who only _____ off hours, is a lousy deal, then they ought to be able to not hire such a person. We may not like what the employer does, but we're supposed to respect their right to do so.'

So what with women, gays, minorities, etc.? Just another whiny democrat policy?

I was refused employment in restaurants and bars during college because I was not a woman. What 'they were looking for' was a girl with tits (No, it wasn't Hooters or a gentlemen's club) to serve their food. I found work elsewhere, but is that right?


What if he's trying to quit... (Below threshold)
snowballs:

What if he's trying to quit by being on the patch - or nicotine gum? He'd still test positive for nicotine.

It's pretty simple, LJD, ev... (Below threshold)
Pete:

It's pretty simple, LJD, even though you seem to be missing the point:

If you don't like it, don't work there. Period. It's the old "you live in my house, you play by my rules" thing... you want th epay check? You do what you're told. Don't want to do that? Find another job. Simple.

Minorities are protected because of a history of systemic discrimination and for no other reason. No such thing exists for smokers.

Would you guys support a co... (Below threshold)
Howcome:

Would you guys support a company that banned after work hours driving? If the company had a policy about the modes of transportation you used while on vacation? How about where you vacation? You all can come up with a dangerous activity that a company could complain about. Try it.

LJD: society chose to provi... (Below threshold)

LJD: society chose to provide protection to minorities because of what they 'are'. smokers aren't born smokers the way someone is born black or female or black and female. notwithstanding their claims about being addicted, they choose to smoke so discriminate against them all you want.

Minorities are protected... (Below threshold)
mantis:

Minorities are protected because of a history of systemic discrimination and for no other reason. No such thing exists for smokers.

We're getting there, though, aren't we?

I am with the lawn-care com... (Below threshold)
James:

I am with the lawn-care company on this. They are paying for that man's health insurance. If he wants to smoke, fine. But the company has every right to dictate what conditions they will underwrite.

I keep saying that this kin... (Below threshold)

I keep saying that this kind of thing is going to keep getting worse. We are well on our way down the slippery slope to "true equality".

Howcome: actually, it depen... (Below threshold)
mcg:

Howcome: actually, it depends on what you mean by "support".

Would I support their right to have such stupid hiring codes? Yes.

Would I work for such a company? No. I like to drive.

Would I do business with such a company? Honestly, I'm not sure.

Yeah...the next thing you k... (Below threshold)
moseby:

Yeah...the next thing you know they'll be firing people who FART on the job. And I don't wanna hear any of that second hand intestinal gas crapola...

Pete, had the best point, a... (Below threshold)
robert the Realtor:

Pete, had the best point, above. How many other people could you fire, because you think they MAY drive up your health costs?, certainly I can see a few:

Diabetics: Too many prescriptions...
Obesity: too much chance of heart complications..

Fire them?

How about this one?

people who are sexually immoral? ... this might be lead to increased risk for HIV.
Perhaps, to eliminate the possibility of future costs, ... fire them now?

and lastly, does a chance at sickle cell enemia, and increased risk of heart attack, mean firing black males over the age of 50? ... I think not.

I believe the company will be sued, and this will be a non issue.

Sorry not pete but LDJ, abo... (Below threshold)
Robert the Realtor:

Sorry not pete but LDJ, above. Thanks for the update J.

Robert, let's be clear: whi... (Below threshold)
mcg:

Robert, let's be clear: while it wouldn't surprise me if they are sued, do you believe the lawsuit should succeed? If so, on what basis in law do you think it should prevail?

Let's be clear, Robert: ... (Below threshold)
mcg:

Let's be clear, Robert: reductio ad absurdum is not a legal argument. So in what way is it against the law for an employer in an at-will employment state to terminate an employee for smoking off-duty.

How about this: I work for ... (Below threshold)
jhow66:

How about this: I work for a lawn service company and don't smoke. I get lung problems. I sue the company for not protecting me from the exhaust fumes. Do we ban power mowers? Or do we make the company furnish oxygen mask? No smoking rules can come back to bite you in the pertooty.

I was not a smoker when I w... (Below threshold)
astigafa:

I was not a smoker when I was working as a painter back there in the dim recesses of history, but the people I worked with were. We'd be up on our respective ladders painting, and every half hour or so -- sometimes much less -- the guy I was working next to would stop and light a cigarette, smoke the whole thing, then get back to painting.

Once I got done with my section and the boss came by, looked at what I had done & what the other guy had not done, and said, "Hey, you can't be painting that fast and not miss something. Get up there and fill in."

Dumb bastard.

That said, I feel like we're living in the age of the prig, those people who don't smoke, don't chew, and don't go with those who do. Are people healthier? I don't know. Some people are, because they have the foresight and fortitude to keep drinking red wine and microbrewed beer -- and don't forget the dark chocolate and red licorice. Gotta take care of yourself. "Have a snort now and then for your stomach's sake," said St. Paul.

I think libertarian orthodoxy is to say that people should be allowed to take personal risks that don't affect the well-being of others. This would exclude that OUI noted above. But the guy smoking cigarettes on his own time is hurting nobody, in my estimation.


I retired from the Air Forc... (Below threshold)
SShiell:

I retired from the Air Force some 10 years ago. At the time I was a smoker. A company wanted to hire me for my expertise regarding a software application that was being upgraded. They were competing for the contract to upgrade the software. It was a multi-year, multi-million dollar contract. I was one of the few persons in the world familiar with the software and the policies governing its use and application and the only person at that time outside of the active duty military available.

They had a policy of not hiring smokers. When asked if I smoked I told the truth - Yes. The president of the company frowned and told me they had a policy against hiring smokers. He then looked at me and asked me the question again. I answered the question the same way I had before - Yes.

He made me an extremely attractive offer on the spot. I asked him about his non-smoker policy. He responded that we could keep that our little secret. I had retired some 3 months previously and was not having much luck finding a job at the time so I took the offer - and continued sending out resumes the very next day!

Bottom line? If the company's bottom line can handle it - they will make and adhere to any rule they please! Do I have any respect for that company's chief executive? Not then and not now!

I am amazed at how many sup... (Below threshold)
observer 5:

I am amazed at how many support corporate "liberty" to control their employees' non-work activities, for health reasons, or even, as one commenter said, for "image" reasons.

The country was founded on a respect for individual liberty. We've gone far from that 18th century vision.

Last night on the Michael Graham talk show, he was arguing for the end of discrimination laws, saying that the market would take care of it, and that since gays and other groups caused increased health costs, it could be justified.

Employers' control of off-duty activities could easily extend from limiting smoking, to limiting drinking, to weight-control regulations, to limiting when and how many children you have, to requiring exercise sessions, to mandatory education goals.

The state is not the only potential tyrant - does anyone remember the movie Rollerball? The original one with James Cann, not the putrid remake.

Oh, quit being such a whine... (Below threshold)
mcg:

Oh, quit being such a whiner it, observer5. Yes, this country was founded on individual liberty. But a business owner is also an individual, is he not?

And trust me, you would not want to return to the true "18th century vision" of things. The fact is there was far less regulation of employment in the 18th century than there is now, and there was far less individual liberty (in the "libertine") sense than there is now. In some localities you missed church on Sunday, for example, not only could you have been fired, you could have been breaking the law. And that was in no way contrary to the founders' intent.

Look, if we want to legislate an extension of right-to-work laws so as to forbid the regulation of off-duty activity, then fine, let's do it. But let's lay off this false story that it's somehow contrary to the vision of the founders.

"the face of the company"?<... (Below threshold)
cj:

"the face of the company"?

So, they own me lock, stock and barrel? 24/7?

Isn't that slavery?

What if they object to my politics?

Why do I owe them more than a fair day's work for a fair day's wage?

Do those of you who opine about 'employment at will' type policies ever stop to consider if your economic education included a dose of indoctrination that you've swallowed hook, line and sinker? (It's always to the benefit of the employer, not the employee, and seems to discount the contribution of the latter.)

How can a company proscribe... (Below threshold)
bobdog:

How can a company proscribe a legal activity? Make tobacco illegal and be done with it and stop this hypocrisy.

Go back through all of those arguments about smokers and substitute drinking, and make that illegal, too. Then I'd support it.

Feel free to go from table to table in a restaurant and insult all the patrons who are drinking. It's not only OK, it's socially encouraged. It's For The Chil Dren. Let's pass a boatload of ordinances about liquor stores and bars within 1000 feet of schools and some hefty sin taxes on alcohol. Ban drinking at sporting events. Class-action lawsuits, Celebrity Public Service messages, highly publicized studies and stuff. Get the support of the AMA and the insurance industry. Tell everybody you know how disgusting drinking is and how many people die in alcohol involved traffic accidents and how icky the smell of liquor is. Insult strangers who drink.

And, hey, how about all those revealing clothes girls wear? How can we blame boys for treating them "like meat on a table"? They're just asking for it. Women should be properly covered in public and be ostracized for displaying their wares like common prostitutes. Perhaps we should stone the egregious offenders in the public square if the church elders approve?

And thieves! Limbs should be removed!

And adultery. Women who offend should be beheaded, or killed by their families if their honor is shamed.

Sorry, got off on another topic. Don't know what got into me. It's all so confusing, I just can't keep track of the rules I have to submit to. Does somebody have a current list? Mine must be 8 hours old by now.

I have to say it has been e... (Below threshold)
mcg:

I have to say it has been eye-opening to see how many people on this thread---with bobdog being the latest example---are completely incapable of making a logically sound argument, and resort instead to completely fallacious slipperly slopes or false comparisons.

It's very simple, mcg: you'... (Below threshold)
observer 5:

It's very simple, mcg: you're either willing to submit to every aspect of your life being controlled by your employer, or you're not.

I guess some people are more submissive than others -- "Well, he's paying my salary, I guess I should be grateful he's not demanding to sleep with my fiancee on our wedding night, droit du seigneur after all."

This brings a new aspect to the term "wage slaves."

mcg,You commented ... (Below threshold)
TJIT:

mcg,

You commented on how many people on this thread

are completely incapable of making a logically sound argument, and resort instead to completely fallacious slipperly slopes

In about 20 years we have gone from setting aside no smoking zones to expecting people to urinate on command to prove they don't smoke.

If that is not enough proof that slippery slopes exist I don't know what is.

Pete, You said <... (Below threshold)
TJIT:

Pete,

You said

At will employment is at will employment.
Which ignores the fact that the government has spent hundreds of millions of dollars, mandating, subsidizing, and pushing for drug testing.

If it was just the private employer involved in this situation it would be one thing. However, the government has been strongly involved in setting up the system that allows this policy to be implemented. Because of this the off hours smoking ban is absolutely not a simple case of employer freedom.

It's very simple, mcg: y... (Below threshold)
mcg:

It's very simple, mcg: you're either willing to submit to every aspect of your life being controlled by your employer, or you're not. I guess some people are more submissive than others -- "Well, he's paying my salary, I guess I should be grateful he's not demanding to sleep with my fiancee on our wedding night, droit du seigneur after all."

Actually, observer 5, it's not even remotely that simple. Congratulations for proving my point by providing us all with a prime example of lousy argumentation.

First of all, this employer has selected one off-duty activity to regulate, not every one. And secondly, nobody is forcing anyone to submit to these regulations. You're free to accept their conditions or not---by choosing to work for them or not. I sure as hell wouldn't.

You might suggest, then, that you're just making some sort of slippery slope argument. But it's an absurd one for two reasons. First, there are a variety of legal limits that prevent employers from regulating all off-duty behaivor; including, for example, religious practice. Nor is an employer allowed to discriminate on the basis of marital status, the number of children one has, etc.

And second, for many discriminatory practices that remain legal, there remains a significant market disincentive for such practices to become widespread. The more onerous the regulations an employer wishes to impose, the harder it is going to be to obtain and retain workers. After all, as long as this anti-smoking condition is the exception and not the rule, this employer is going to have access to a smaller pool of potential employees compared to his competition. That has a negative impact that he may or may not be willing to accept.

On the other hand, the employer could counter this disadvantage by paying his employees more than the competition. So say he calculates that he saves $200/employee/month by imposing this restriction on reduced health insurance premiums. Let's further suppose that this employer offers to pass 75% of those savings onto their employees in the form of higher wages. Are you saying that an employee ought not be allowed to choose to weigh this tradeoff for themselves? Aren't you the one claiming to be a better champion of individual liberty?

Final point. I frankly think the natural social and market disincentives to this kind of practice are sufficiently strong so as to prevent it from becoming commonplace. I am wrong, we still have the power to make the change through legislation. But I happen to believe that it is important to restrain the tendency to regulate every distasteful thing that comes up. It should be the last remedy, not the first. (Freedom does include the freedom to be an ass.)

In about 20 years we hav... (Below threshold)
mcg:

In about 20 years we have gone from setting aside no smoking zones to expecting people to urinate on command to prove they don't smoke. If that is not enough proof that slippery slopes exist I don't know what is.

TJIT, that's not the slope I'm referring to. What I am referring to is the claim that this is just the first instance of what will become a widespread and onerous practice of employers regulating all-duty behavior. There will be crackpots of course but they will be exceptions that prove the rule.

As for the "slope" you've cited---that of the increasing rejection of smoking in both public and private arenas: well, whether or not that is a slippery slope depends on who you talk to. Some people would see it as positive societal evolution.

"all-duty" ---> "off-duty" ... (Below threshold)
mcg:

"all-duty" ---> "off-duty" above. Sorry about that

Thanks, Jay...One ... (Below threshold)
ken:

Thanks, Jay...

One of my bosses once said to me, "You're the most intelligent person I know who still smokes."

Still, a lot nicer way to phrase it than "I think that people who smoke are self-destructive idiots who dont' give a rat's ass about the annoyance they cause others and the burden they inflict on their loved ones with their addiction. I wholeheartedly agree with the old aphorisms that "kissing a smoker is like licking an ashtray" and a cigarette is best described as "a fire on one end and a fool on the other."

May you never have any personal shortcomings.


Ken


mcg,you said <bloc... (Below threshold)
TJIT:

mcg,

you said

As for the "slope" you've cited---that of the increasing rejection of smoking in both public and private arenas: well, whether or not that is a slippery slope depends on who you talk to. Some people would see it as positive societal evolution.

Nice hand waving, but the slippery slope you claim does not exist clearly does and no amount of obfuscation on your part will change that.

Observer5. ..Is th... (Below threshold)
Ryan:

Observer5. ..

Is the owner of a company an individual? As an individual does the owner of the company have a right to decide who he does and does nto distribute his assets to? Do YOU have a right to TELL him who he is allowed to distribute his assets to? Whats next, observer - telling customers that they don't have a right to choose where they shop?

YOu see, empkloyees aren't the only individual involved here> YOu want to talk true libertarian, the company owner has rights as much as the1 employees do.

The employer has the right to set his hiring practices. The employee has the right to say no, walk away, and find a different job.


To elaborate: Would you se... (Below threshold)
RYan:

To elaborate: Would you set up a law requiring consumers to buy products only from a diverse workforce? Or that they can't say, for example, I want to hire a minority firm to do my work? An employer is a customer, and the product they are 'buying' is their workforce, so unless you are prepared to say that business owners are NOT individuals, you have a severe consistancy problem with your position.

Say, for example, you hire ... (Below threshold)
RYan:

Say, for example, you hire someone to do your lawn. And later you find out about some odious personal habit they have and decide to fire them. Their habit is somethign they do on their own time, outside of working for you. In all fairness, it has no effect on their performance on your lawn> Should you be allowed to fire them from doing your lawn, or should someone step in and force you to keep hiring them until you find out that they are drinking while driving the riding mower?

. . .its how you spend your money, its hoqw the employer spends his money> As long as it meets the terms of the contract you both signed. . .




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