Join Jim and Greg as they applaud Democratic Senators Kyrsten Sinema and Joe Manchin for refusing to eliminate or alter the filibuster despite massive pressure from their own party. They also welcome the Supreme Court’s decision striking down President Biden’s vaccine mandate on all businesses with more than 100 employees while also noting a separate decision that upheld the mandate on personnel at health care facilities. And they take a look at even more signs that Russia may be planning to invade Ukraine in the coming weeks.

Study: Plexiglass Barriers Successful at Trapping Virus Near Heads of Workers


A peer-reviewed study has concluded that the plexiglass barriers surrounding customer-facing retail workers successfully traps the COVID virus on, around and near their heads. The’s study’s summary report states “No doubt about it – the virus really gets up in your grill when there’s no proper airflow.”

According to the report, by encouraging the air surrounding employees to “you know, hang around,” the plastic barriers contribute an ideal transmission environment for the deadly COVID virus.

The study’s conclusion even went so far as to say that by removing the barriers to encourage better airflow, restaurants might then be able to safely seat more customers inside their doors during the winter months instead of “forcing them to live like animals by having dinner on a Chicago sidewalk. In February.”

Questionable Presidential Authority


Limits on presidential authority are something that we’ve discussed before on Ricochet. The topic comes up again with Joe Biden’s mandate through OSHA that companies fire employees who haven’t been vaccinated for COVID-19, unless they submit to a weekly test. This post is not about arguing for or against vaccines. I don’t care if you are for or against these vaccines, as there are oodles of posts that cover that topic already. What I am concerned about is the trend of making the presidency a more and more powerful office with each generation.

Does anyone claim with a straight face that when the Occupational Safety and Health Administration was established by Congress in 1971 that members of Congress believed they were giving the agency the power to dictate that companies fire employees? How many people in 1971 thought that it would be kosher for a future president to use OSHA to command companies to fire tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands, or conceivably even millions of people? There is the black-and-white letter of the law and there is reality. The reality is that government tends to do whatever it can get away with. If the citizenry makes enough noise or files enough lawsuits, maybe government will back down and obey the law. If the citizens shrug, mutter, and get on with things, government will continue to act as if it has a particular authority, regardless of what the law actually says.

Welcome to the Wacky World of OSHA: Walking-Working Surfaces


The most commonly cited OSHA standard is 29 CFR 1910 Subpart D, Walking-Working Surfaces.  It’s not surprising: the biggest causes of death in construction are falls and being struck by an object, both of which the standard tries to prevent.

Like much of the OSHA regulations, it tends to spell out the common sense approach.  Railing, scaffolds, ladders, etc need to be well put together and guard against objects rolling off and smacking someone.  People high up need harnesses and safety lines so they are not one slip away from a splat, and the harnesses need to be inspected just like a parachute.  Lots of explicit listing of just how big a railing needs to be and what the spacing needs to be, etc.  Like nearly every standard, it begins with a set of definitions for all of the words / concepts specific to the standard.  For example:

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“You are traveling through another dimension, a dimension not only of sight and sound but of mind. A journey into a wondrous land of imagination. Next stop, the Twilight Zone!” James Pethokoukis wrote another in a series of articles pointing to the disturbing downward trend in new business start-ups.  Preview Open

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Some of you may have seen my brother in the news last year when the facility he founded, Project Survival’s Cat Haven, suffered a tragic loss when one of their workers was killed by one of the facility’s cats, a Barbary lion. The death was a result of a mistake made by the young woman […]

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