TCS & Zaremberg: An inappropriate relationship

Posted on April 21, 2014

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More than 500 years before Christ was born a Chinese general and philosopher penned the chronicles that we know today as the Art of War. That Generals name was Sun Tsu. Packed full of ancient wisdom that has since been passed around the globe, it was produced during a tumultuous time of warring states.

History suggests that after the chronicles were penned and General Tsu’s king of state, the King of Wu read them and he challenged the good general to use that same wisdom to train an army of the least likely: 180 concubine women from kings harem would be assigned to the general and he was ordered to use the wisdom written therein to create a fighting force.

The general picked the kings two favorites as officers in command and put them in charge of 90 women divisions and charged these two women with their troops being able to follow the generals commands. In an effort to test their progress, he ordered his new troops to assemble on the parade grounds for some drill training. When the general ordered his new divisions to face right, they giggled like school girls and did not obey. He issued the command again and again, they giggled and again did not obey.

Believing that a general was in charge of his officers and his appointed officers were in charge of their troops, he explained to his troops his philosophy. He then had the king’s favorite concubines hauled out of the ranks and executed over the kings objections and assigned two new officers from the ranks.

The next time he issued the command to face right there wasn’t a single giggle in the ranks and the command was successfully executed by all because they had all learned a few important lessons.

1. Anyone can be chosen for leadership

2. The penalty for a failed execution of an order is a successful execution of the leadership.

In today’s modern age when you apply Sun Tsu’s wisdom to employment, the net result is termination of a less brutal kind. Except of course if you are a leader appointed by queen feckless. If you are a leader appointed by queen feckless your failure to deliver means you will have a conference center named after you and you will be  showered with commendation for being six years behind delivery schedule and a projected billions over budget. Other failed leaders will actually be promoted to specially created internal committees whereby the command remains the same: Develop a case management solution – just don’t refer to it as CCMS anymore.

Personally, I prefer General Sun Tsu’s approach to failed leadership as opposed to that of queen feckless – or her good friend Darrell Steinberg who is currently taxing millions of people while denying them representation in Sacramento. It is this same stuff that creates revolutions – or at least ensures you will never occupy a position of public command again.

Which brings us to queen feckless’s friendship with Alan Zaremberg. Now while on the face of it it seems innocuous enough, consider for a moment how this relationship recently played out. At 18 minutes and 18 seconds in the video below Alzada Knickerbocker, the owner of Avid Reader bookstore owner in Davis California. She also happens to be on the California Leadership Council for the National Association Federation of independent Business which, like the California Chamber of Commerce is pro-business and anti-worker. During her speech, she advocates the use of the motion for summary judgement as a critical tool for small businesses to dismiss abusive lawsuits and claims that only a well-funded court system can take the uncertainty out of owning a small business “When lawsuits are resolved in a year instead of three years” Being small business owners ourselves, we’d like to see motions for summary judgement ruled on within the first 90 days as that takes real uncertainty out of the system but it isn’t so much this message as hauling out small pro-business / anti-lawsuit /anti-worker types as the face of the judicial branch.

Okay, we thought to ourselves, that was an inappropriate case example of how the closed down courtrooms throughout the state have been previously used and how budget might impact a future motion for summary judgement but more important than that was the underlying message: Queen Feckless is pro-business, anti-litigation and anti-worker – a message she’s clearly and unambiguously telegraphed many a time through her various actions. Predictably, it played out as disastrous in the halls of Sacramento.

Was this merely a one-off? Sadly, that answer is no.

Next appearing would be Travis Hausauer whose business the Squeeze Inn would also get a free plug from the chief justice. He would commence his speech with the fact that that he was among the leaders of California Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse that, like most other small businesses also relied on a well-funded court system to dismiss frivolous litigation in a timely manner.

While we might agree that the legislature creates the laws that get abused through the usually unintended consequences of their actions, speeches promoting a functional court system and three year plans might be shunned by many in Sacramento that are opposed to those parties other interests, like preventing an increase in the minimum wage. Like requiring employer paid/contributed healthcare. Like requiring paid sick leave. Like providing many of the other benefits enjoyed by first world countries and strongly opposed by the national federation of independent businesses and the chief justices friend, Alan Zaremberg, president of the California Chamber of Commerce.

For sure, we’re pro-business. But we also are smart enough to realize that being pro-business only happens when you take care of your people and are pro-worker by paying them living wages so they’re not forced to live off medi-cal and food stamps. It only happens when you take due care in contributing to health plans that ensures their own economic security. We’re among many other businesses from Apple to ZenApp that rejects the notion of corporate welfare by treating employees as third world slaves of the state that we toss a bone towards every once in awhile. Many of the interests of CalChamber and NFIB are not shared by us.

And we believe it to be wholly inappropriate for a chief justice to even have the appearance of promoting these or any other controversial cause by giving them a voice in any three year plan.

And that is why we believe the chief justices three year plan was dead upon arrival at the state legislature. We trust that there is an award in these matters somewhere for someone when they should probably be hauled out of the ranks and executed like a real leader might do. Yet in an atmosphere where perfect crimes can be committed, this serves as yet another in a really long list of items that lack accountability, for it will be the courts who will be held accountable for this colossal mis-step and not the judicial council or its commanding general, queen feckless.

It begs the question:
 

 

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