Re: The OTHER Test

Subject: Re: The OTHER Test
From: Mike Stockman <stockman -at- jagunet -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 18 Oct 2000 20:52:38 -0400

On 10/18/00 7:40 PM, Marilyn_Baldwin -at- capgroup -dot- com
(Marilyn_Baldwin -at- capgroup -dot- com) wrote:

>Jeez, I can't BELIEVE I am reminding you all of this. I was in
>college during the 60s and 70s and am usually a card-carrying liberal.
>But I have always understood the "alternative golden rule" - those who
>have the gold make the rules. My right to do as I damn well please
>ENDS when I am about to put my hands on YOUR, uh, assets.

Ridiculous, especially in a job market where I can walk away from any
company so rude and intrusive as to assume I'm a criminal until I can
prove otherwise. Those companies end up with employees who can be pushed
around easily, which is either their goal, or their self-imposed
punishment, take your pick.

Once upon a time, companies had to manage their employees, evaluating
their performance over time and deciding whether to keep them, promote
them, or fire them based on actual data about the employee's value.
Alcoholic employee? If it affects job performance (not guaranteed),
they'll notice it, and fire the rascal. Someone snorting coke during
lunchtime? Heck, they'll probably write faster. LSD could be a problem,
especially in hardware documentation and anything involving colors.
Through dubious tests and checks, companies fool themselves into thinking
they're handling the problems ahead of time, saving themselves the effort
to actually pay attention to what their employees are doing. Your right
to evaluate me as a potential employee stops about six inches from my

[Jump back on-topic:] Remember, we're talking about technical writing
here, not commercial airline piloting. None of us is operating heavy
equipment under the influence, or transferring huge quantities of money
across the ocean. No employer is justified in treating anyone on *this*
list as a criminal-until-the-urine-test-shows-otherwise. Unless, of
course, you can show me where a tech. writer caused the death of hundreds
of passengers because of substance abuse.


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