Sheldon: You realize, Penny, that the technology that went into this arm will one day make unskilled food servers such as yourself obsolete.

Penny: Really? They’re going to make a robot that spits on your hamburger?

The Big Bang Theory The Robotic Manipulation 2010

Yesterday I had a late breakfast at the Moran Square Diner in Fitchburg and spoke to the owner Chris Giannetti

Moran square Diner has been there a long time and Chris has been running it for nearly 20 years. I had planned on a simple piece on the diner and the consistently good food 6 days a week from a flat-out Sunday to a slow Tuesday.

Then I saw this story:

Emboldened by an outpouring of support on social media, low-wage fast-food and retail workers from eight cities who have staged walkouts this year are calling for a national day of strikes Aug. 29.

Fast food workers planning to strike, their demands?

The workers are calling for a wage of $15 an hour and the right to form a union. Organizers of the walkout say cashiers, cooks and crew members at fast-food restaurants are paid a median wage of $8.94 an hour.

Two things instantly come to mind here comparing Chris situation and the fast food workers here.

For a strike to be successful there has to be a lack of alternatives to replace the workers in question. This is not the case here.

With unemployment as high as it there are dozens of people waiting in line to replace each and every one of the workers in question and doesn’t even count the number of high school or college students looking for part-time work or the robots waiting in the wings.

and that’s just the alternatives for the workers. If every one of those businesses closed tomorrow there would be plenty of break trucks, dog wagons, local diners and even 7/11’s just waiting to serve those customers.

and that brings us to point two

Chris works 60+ hours a week, constantly at the grill and when he’s not cooking he’s cleaning or doing prep work he’s been doing it for almost two decades.

He like other business owners bears all the responsibility and all the risk, before he sees a dollar from the business he has to pay the suppliers, the workers, and the fees/taxes assessed by the local state and federal government.

Only then, when all of these people are paid does he get his cut.

He’s not allowed a bad day either.  If he has a bad day at the grill or with a customer there are plenty of small Diners, Duncan Donuts, Chinese restaurants,  pizza places and yes, fast food places within a mile just waiting to welcome any dissatisfied customer.

Yet with all of this over his head I very much doubt Chris takes home anything near $15 an hour demanded by the strikers and that’s after 20 years on the job.

There is nothing wrong with the workers looking for a better situation and doing their best to achieve it, but I don’t see how any of these folks rate a higher pay than Chris.

and I’d be really shocked if they can make a tastier Sausage & eggs breakfast than he does.

The Moran Square Diner has been a Fitchburg fixture for decades host

hosting locals. Years ago Senator Edward Kennedy put away a Cheeseburger and a dog at this corner booth during his visit.

With election day 24 hours away Senator Scott Brown Bus came to Fitchburg

and after speaking to the crowd

sat in that very same booth

The Kennedy booth becomes the People’s booth

greeting voters and talking to people at lunch turning the “Kennedy” seat into the “People” seat as he seeks re-election and a full six year term to represent the people of Massachusetts.

It’s not surprising he would find himself in Fitchburg, and not just for the incredible breakfasts and lunch that owner Chris Giannetti has been serving to hungry customers for years.

or the hot chocolate that his daughter enjoyed after a brief interview:

good reasons thought they are.

It was because Fitchburg was one of the key cities that took Brown over the top, shocking pundits nationally and locally with his special election win in January 2010 which was the harbinger of the electoral pounding the left received 10 months. Inspiring GOP challengers such as Jon Golnik running in districts like Ma-3 where once the left once ran unopposed.

His 2010 victory remains a driver as the nation heads for the polls in 2012.

Gail Huff, wife of Senator Scott Brown greets a voter

It’s not an easy road. Incumbency is one of the few advantages Senator Brown brings to the race in 2012, this time around. Massachusetts remains a deep blue state (+25 registration advantage for democrats), instead of a special election with only his race to be decided he faces democrats above and below his spot on the ticket all trying to drive the faithful to the polls and finally he faces in Elizabeth Warren a person with a national following and reputation and millions of dollars to back her from some of the biggest donors the Democrat party has.

GOP candidate for Ma-3 Jon Golnik greets voters in Fitchburg before the Arrival of Senator Brown

These are tough hills to climb for Senator Brown and a source of comfort for Elizabeth Warren

But alas for Professor Warren, Senator Brown counters with two other advantages she cannot match for all the Hollywood dollars she may have to spend. He comes bearing a record as one of the most moderate Senators in the congress at a time where gridlock is a dirty word and “bi-partisan” is the favorite phrase of the media. He spoke of this in his initial remarks:

It’s very hard to condemn your opponent as an “extremist” when he votes against his own party 40% of the time.

Secondly there is Senator Brown demeanor.

Senator Brown has a well-earned reputation for listening to the voters no matter if they agree with him or no and being there when the voters need him. For years people on the right who wondered how Ted Kennedy kept his seat never taking into account his legendary reputation for constituent services. It is no accident that after being elected Senator Brown retained a fair amount of that Kennedy staff and shares that same reputation for listening to and taking care of the voters who sent him to Washington.

Senator Brown with a family at Moran Square Diner

This is why every poll of voters in the state during this race shows him drawing Democrats in numbers that no Republican in the country could ever dream of and why Fitchburg a city where, as Counselor at large Marcus DiNatale notes, Democrats have a 35 point registration advantage can be one of the cornerstones of Senator Brown’s re-election plans.

National Democrats considered this race their linchpin to retain the US senate in 2012, But as the latest polls and Senator Brown’s dogged campaign shows millions of dollars from the biggest elite donors from around the country will be hard pressed to counter a hand shaken in person and an ear willing to listen to a voter, any voter no matter what the party affiliation.

Democrats were shocked at Scott Brown taking “the Kennedy Seat” but as Senator Brown finished his meal in the booth once graced by his illustrious predecessor the left’s shock in 2010 is slowing becoming their resignation of 2012.