Commentary

Prez wants to get flexible

President Bush called on Congress on Thursday to pass legislation making it easier for employers to offer workers time off instead of overtime pay ââ?¬â?? an idea Republicans hope will appeal both to Bush’s core business supporters and to swing voters juggling home and work responsibilities. … “This world is changing,” Bush has told almost every audience he has addressed recently. “We need to make sure government changes with the times.” Read on, here. There’s another important way government could change with the times and get flexibleââ?¬â??stop getting in the way of telecommuting. Technology has done its part. Computers are faster and cheaper than ever before broadband Internet access is becoming more widespread. Workers have shown they like telework. Now it’s up to government to stop using tax policy, workplace safety regs and zoning ordinances (among other things) to bear down on telecommuting. Even with these barriers telecommuting has grown more common. Remove them and who knows what good stuff might happen. Telecommuting factoid: A George Mason University study of the DC area claims that traffic delays would drop 10 percent for every three percent of commuters who work at home. And there’s the outsourcing angle, too.

Ted Balaker is an award-winning filmmaker, journalist, and founding partner of Korchula Productions, a film and new media production company devoted to making important ideas entertaining.