The Dumbest Letter Ever Written To The Ledger

I know, I know, it’s a little bit like saying the greenest blade of grass, but honestly, this letter-to-the-editor from Lee Feuer of Auburndale is almost an artwork of ignorance and self-centeredness. It’s the second of two letters contained in this link.

It opens:

The big government takeover has to stop. Ever since liberals claimed power, it’s been one bureaucratic scheme after another.

Their newest target, health care, is the most dangerous intervention yet…

OK. Standard Rush/Hannity boilerplate. Nothing to see here. But then read the punchline:

I am a senior citizen and, up to now, have had great care under Medicare. I have worked all my life and feel that we do not have to give coverage to those who have not become citizens nor have not decided to work. I also feel that if this bill passes that Congress should be under this program, with no perks.

[Emphasis mine]

That’s right, the man railing against a government, bureaucratic takeover of health care is afraid that this takeover will damage the “great care” provided to him by the government “bureaucratic scheme” known as Medicare. He’s afraid of the government intervening in government. I never thought I’d write this anywhere, but – OMG.

I just want to stop for a second and ask a question. We do all understand that Medicare is single-payer, mostly socialized medicine, right? It is not conjured out of sweet nectar by the private sector health care fairy. Taxes pay for it. Government bureaucrats administer it – more efficiently than private sector bureaucrats administer their plans. We grasp this, collectively, don’t we?

And as far as working all your life, Mr. Feuer, let me just say that my wife and I have worked our entire lives to pay for your Medicare and Social Security, which you seem to enjoy. We are happy to do it. We’ll continue to do it, with smiles. But we’d like to come up with a plan that ensures that we also pay for ourselves and our children to enjoy that excellent care at a cost that doesn’t bankrupt the country, as private sector insurance is currently doing.

Finally, I’ve heard a lot over the years about how much better our education system used to be in this country, how those of you in the golden years were taught with such great rigor. But I got to tell you, there are times when I wonder how you people even perpetuated the species.

27 thoughts on “The Dumbest Letter Ever Written To The Ledger

  1. Mr. Feuer’s letter is quite possibly one of the most egregious “I got mine – to hell with everyone else” old coot moments I’ve seen in print in a long time. He probably screams at kids to keep off his lawn and rails against paying taxes to support public schools because he “doesn’t have any kids!”

  2. Mr. Feuer’s letter is quite possibly one of the most egregious “I got mine – to hell with everyone else” old coot moments I’ve seen in print in a long time. He probably screams at kids to keep off his lawn and rails against paying taxes to support public schools because he “doesn’t have any kids!”

  3. Yes, it’s truly bizarre to hear somebody sing the praises for socialized elder healthcare and then say that if the rest of us get the very same thing then it’s the end of our country and the apocalypse AT THE SAME TIME! Reminds me of the woman I saw interviewed in an on-air spot at the Tax Day Tea Party in Knoxville. She was there protesting people who were getting a free ride, and she was able to be there in the middle of the day because she was drawing permanent disability.

    Um, yeah, right. Amen Billy, and that’s all I really have to say about this.

  4. Yes, it’s truly bizarre to hear somebody sing the praises for socialized elder healthcare and then say that if the rest of us get the very same thing then it’s the end of our country and the apocalypse AT THE SAME TIME! Reminds me of the woman I saw interviewed in an on-air spot at the Tax Day Tea Party in Knoxville. She was there protesting people who were getting a free ride, and she was able to be there in the middle of the day because she was drawing permanent disability.

    Um, yeah, right. Amen Billy, and that’s all I really have to say about this.

  5. I understand what this man is saying, in a way, there is a lot of fear of the unknown right now regarding what is going to happen to Medicare and Medicaid for the medical needy. As a disabled citizen who worked all my adult life until I became disabled and unable to work can tell you I am scared. Without Medicare I will probably die because I cannot afford to pay $2200.00 every 90 days for my insulin and insulin supplies without some help from this agency. I do pay for some of the bill but depend on Medicare for help. Maybe this man is fearful as well in losing something that could mean the diffence between life and death.

  6. I understand what this man is saying, in a way, there is a lot of fear of the unknown right now regarding what is going to happen to Medicare and Medicaid for the medical needy. As a disabled citizen who worked all my adult life until I became disabled and unable to work can tell you I am scared. Without Medicare I will probably die because I cannot afford to pay $2200.00 every 90 days for my insulin and insulin supplies without some help from this agency. I do pay for some of the bill but depend on Medicare for help. Maybe this man is fearful as well in losing something that could mean the diffence between life and death.

  7. Fear doesn’t excuse logical fallacy in policy rants.

  8. Since we’re offering opinions here (as opposed to facts) I’ll offer mine. Mr Feuer is incorrect in his assertion that the big government take over started with the latest round of liberals. It started long before that, and not only by liberals. However no one in history has ever advanced the economical ball down the field of debt like the current administration has. I wonder if we were able to indebt our personal estates to our great grandchildren, if we would? I fear the answer.

    Capt Obvious suggests correctly that fear should not be an excuse for logical fallacy in policy rants. It should not be an excuse for passing the largest spending bill in history without reading it either, but our legislators did just that, and it has become common place. Which is more egregious?

    Missybw: reports a person who was interviewed at the Tax Day Tea Party complaining about people taking a free ride while she was there due to permanent disability. Well a permanent disability suggests her ride was not at all free. But, do ya think she was representative of all that were protesting? I suspect not. Anymore than Ganine Garafalo (who says they were all racist bigots) is representative of those that didn’t attend.

    Mr Feuer is operating on a simple assertion. In general, those that paid into the system should be able to draw on the system. Those that did not, should not. There will always be exceptions. But those exceptions should not include generations of families who have learned to work the system. Or for the greatest part of 13 million illegals who do not pay taxes but continue to take from the system in the form of social programs. See California’s latest state of emergency. Unfortunately the rules have been changed on Mr. Feuer and much of it done without his knowledge. For those who understand the history of Social Security, the idea was to pay into the system so as to draw out what you paid in, not what your descendants paid in. And back in the day when enacted, social security was not a part of the general fund and it was actually secure. Congress saw that it was doing well and took care of that too.

    And Mr. Townsend I wonder if it would not be too much trouble to disagree with people without making it personal. Is the “you people” to which you refer “Baby Boomers” in general? Or just the elderly who disagree with your political position? To suggest that Mr. Feuer’s was “The Dumbest Letter Ever Written to the Ledger” is offensive on its face. if one takes the time to write out of concern, should not the concern be addressed without throwing them under the bus? No , that’s not the way we do things anymore, we need to berate, and castigate them until they are silenced. Not everyone has the ability to make a point without writing a book, but you know that. So when a concern is raised, could just a little latitude be offered. Or should we just paint everyone with whom we disagree to be the village idiot. It may well be that’s why the village readership is drying up.

    France, Canada, England? They all have their own medical coverage problems too. And it’s not that we shouldn’t always look to improve our own as well. But when we put that in the hands of the government, their track record on running business is just not good at all . . . Yes Mr. Feuer, be afraid, but keep raising questions to continue discourse. Who knows, maybe we will come to improvements through logical, civil discourse.

  9. Since we’re offering opinions here (as opposed to facts) I’ll offer mine. Mr Feuer is incorrect in his assertion that the big government take over started with the latest round of liberals. It started long before that, and not only by liberals. However no one in history has ever advanced the economical ball down the field of debt like the current administration has. I wonder if we were able to indebt our personal estates to our great grandchildren, if we would? I fear the answer.

    Capt Obvious suggests correctly that fear should not be an excuse for logical fallacy in policy rants. It should not be an excuse for passing the largest spending bill in history without reading it either, but our legislators did just that, and it has become common place. Which is more egregious?

    Missybw: reports a person who was interviewed at the Tax Day Tea Party complaining about people taking a free ride while she was there due to permanent disability. Well a permanent disability suggests her ride was not at all free. But, do ya think she was representative of all that were protesting? I suspect not. Anymore than Ganine Garafalo (who says they were all racist bigots) is representative of those that didn’t attend.

    Mr Feuer is operating on a simple assertion. In general, those that paid into the system should be able to draw on the system. Those that did not, should not. There will always be exceptions. But those exceptions should not include generations of families who have learned to work the system. Or for the greatest part of 13 million illegals who do not pay taxes but continue to take from the system in the form of social programs. See California’s latest state of emergency. Unfortunately the rules have been changed on Mr. Feuer and much of it done without his knowledge. For those who understand the history of Social Security, the idea was to pay into the system so as to draw out what you paid in, not what your descendants paid in. And back in the day when enacted, social security was not a part of the general fund and it was actually secure. Congress saw that it was doing well and took care of that too.

    And Mr. Townsend I wonder if it would not be too much trouble to disagree with people without making it personal. Is the “you people” to which you refer “Baby Boomers” in general? Or just the elderly who disagree with your political position? To suggest that Mr. Feuer’s was “The Dumbest Letter Ever Written to the Ledger” is offensive on its face. if one takes the time to write out of concern, should not the concern be addressed without throwing them under the bus? No , that’s not the way we do things anymore, we need to berate, and castigate them until they are silenced. Not everyone has the ability to make a point without writing a book, but you know that. So when a concern is raised, could just a little latitude be offered. Or should we just paint everyone with whom we disagree to be the village idiot. It may well be that’s why the village readership is drying up.

    France, Canada, England? They all have their own medical coverage problems too. And it’s not that we shouldn’t always look to improve our own as well. But when we put that in the hands of the government, their track record on running business is just not good at all . . . Yes Mr. Feuer, be afraid, but keep raising questions to continue discourse. Who knows, maybe we will come to improvements through logical, civil discourse.

  10. “However no one in history has ever advanced the economical ball down the field of debt like the current administration has.”

    This is demonstrably false. See the link below story and accompanying graphic. sorry I can’t link directly in a comment.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/10/business/economy/10leonhardt.html?_r=1&scp=1&sq=leonhardt%20debt%20deficit&st=cse

    I’ll summarize. The vast, vast majority of current US debt comes from the Medicare prescription drug plan and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, along with tax cuts, all of which emerged from the previous administration. The Iraq War, with not a hint of a tax to pay for it, was particularly devastating to our national balance sheet. It has already cost us 3 to 4 times what the stimulus package will eventually cost with no chances of an actual return on investment. The previous administration dealt with this Iraq debt by pretending it did not exist. Iraq and Afghanistan were kept off-budget. The new administration decided to count it as money, thus growing the deficit through an accounting move.

    You must inform yourself better. Ignorance is personal, which is why I attacked Mr. Feuer’s ignorance. It’s personal because is affects me and my children. Liberal takeover, blah, blah blah, bleat, bleat, bleat, is not an argument. As many conservative commenters here can attest, I treat all informed, thoughtful arguments with respect. But the Rush Limbaugh ditto-types, who have been doing precisely what you complain about, for decades now, have inflicted enormous damage on this country because people like me have too long given them “a little latitude.” I won’t do it any more. When Glenn Beck is gone, then you won’t have to worry about me.

  11. “However no one in history has ever advanced the economical ball down the field of debt like the current administration has.”

    This is demonstrably false. See the link below story and accompanying graphic. sorry I can’t link directly in a comment.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/10/business/economy/10leonhardt.html?_r=1&scp=1&sq=leonhardt%20debt%20deficit&st=cse

    I’ll summarize. The vast, vast majority of current US debt comes from the Medicare prescription drug plan and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, along with tax cuts, all of which emerged from the previous administration. The Iraq War, with not a hint of a tax to pay for it, was particularly devastating to our national balance sheet. It has already cost us 3 to 4 times what the stimulus package will eventually cost with no chances of an actual return on investment. The previous administration dealt with this Iraq debt by pretending it did not exist. Iraq and Afghanistan were kept off-budget. The new administration decided to count it as money, thus growing the deficit through an accounting move.

    You must inform yourself better. Ignorance is personal, which is why I attacked Mr. Feuer’s ignorance. It’s personal because is affects me and my children. Liberal takeover, blah, blah blah, bleat, bleat, bleat, is not an argument. As many conservative commenters here can attest, I treat all informed, thoughtful arguments with respect. But the Rush Limbaugh ditto-types, who have been doing precisely what you complain about, for decades now, have inflicted enormous damage on this country because people like me have too long given them “a little latitude.” I won’t do it any more. When Glenn Beck is gone, then you won’t have to worry about me.

  12. Thanks for the article, I read it but it will take me more than once through to decipher all the data. So, if I post links to a host of opposing data, will it make a difference in your position or mine? I doubt it.

    My complaint about your comments cannot be held to the Rush’s and the Beck’s exclusively. There is plenty trash talking going on in every faction. To suggest otherwise omits the many left wing bloggers and commenter’s who disgustingly tried to tie the Tea Parties reference to particular sexual practices for the purpose of denigration. What I find curious is that your words suggest your aspire to be like those you say you detest. So to protect your children you will behave more like ones you say are behaving badly? I find the argument in general disingenuous. That is exactly the same thing the other camp is saying. If we speak up about an issue were labeled as right wing hatemonger, racist, or homophobe (take your pick) so they’ll be silenced. The right has said that about the left for years as well. So shall we continue to play the game and throw rocks, or shall we deal with issues?

    BTW, I am not a big fan of the previous administration either; I go on records disapproving of much of what was done during that time period too, but then again, so has Rush and Beck! So whom shall we rail against now? I am not nearly so concerned about the who that has done what, so much as I am about the what that has been, and will be done.

    To say I must be better informed goes with saying. Who among us couldn’t stand to be better informed? But I am working on it. In fact when I do a quick check of the numbers on the Iraqi war and the stimulus cost, the numbers are all over the place for both. So one needs to be select about who is doing the informing. You also state that the Iraqi war has no ROI, (does any war) but as we are about to find out, the war in Iraq will be much easier to manage than in Afghanistan (read: less expensive in dollars and lives) again, just my opinion. But it just might be that a war in Iraq was an easier place to do battle then a mountain region and consequently easier to draw in and deal with bad guys as opposed to say, Maryland. Bush didn’t pick this fight, and I saw very few saying “Hold on now, don’t go after the bad guys”. But there are many willing to say “You shouldn‘t have done it that way”.

    Why in the world Mr. Townsend, would Glenn Back have to go so then I won’t have to worry about you. I was never worried about you at all. I simply pointed out that rather than deal with an issue you would prefer to be politically rhetorical and would it not be in the best interest of us all to step back from the name calling. Your answer is a resounding NO! I get it.

  13. Thanks for the article, I read it but it will take me more than once through to decipher all the data. So, if I post links to a host of opposing data, will it make a difference in your position or mine? I doubt it.

    My complaint about your comments cannot be held to the Rush’s and the Beck’s exclusively. There is plenty trash talking going on in every faction. To suggest otherwise omits the many left wing bloggers and commenter’s who disgustingly tried to tie the Tea Parties reference to particular sexual practices for the purpose of denigration. What I find curious is that your words suggest your aspire to be like those you say you detest. So to protect your children you will behave more like ones you say are behaving badly? I find the argument in general disingenuous. That is exactly the same thing the other camp is saying. If we speak up about an issue were labeled as right wing hatemonger, racist, or homophobe (take your pick) so they’ll be silenced. The right has said that about the left for years as well. So shall we continue to play the game and throw rocks, or shall we deal with issues?

    BTW, I am not a big fan of the previous administration either; I go on records disapproving of much of what was done during that time period too, but then again, so has Rush and Beck! So whom shall we rail against now? I am not nearly so concerned about the who that has done what, so much as I am about the what that has been, and will be done.

    To say I must be better informed goes with saying. Who among us couldn’t stand to be better informed? But I am working on it. In fact when I do a quick check of the numbers on the Iraqi war and the stimulus cost, the numbers are all over the place for both. So one needs to be select about who is doing the informing. You also state that the Iraqi war has no ROI, (does any war) but as we are about to find out, the war in Iraq will be much easier to manage than in Afghanistan (read: less expensive in dollars and lives) again, just my opinion. But it just might be that a war in Iraq was an easier place to do battle then a mountain region and consequently easier to draw in and deal with bad guys as opposed to say, Maryland. Bush didn’t pick this fight, and I saw very few saying “Hold on now, don’t go after the bad guys”. But there are many willing to say “You shouldn‘t have done it that way”.

    Why in the world Mr. Townsend, would Glenn Back have to go so then I won’t have to worry about you. I was never worried about you at all. I simply pointed out that rather than deal with an issue you would prefer to be politically rhetorical and would it not be in the best interest of us all to step back from the name calling. Your answer is a resounding NO! I get it.

  14. Pingback: » Ultimately, All Politics is Personal at Metro I4 News - Central Florida News and Info

  15. Shibumi said: “So, if I post links to a host of opposing data, will it make a difference in your position or mine? I doubt it.”

    HA HA HA HA – You’re going to disregard anything factual/relevant you aren’t predisposed to agree with? But everyone else’s opinions are the problem here? Lovely…

  16. Shibumi said: “So, if I post links to a host of opposing data, will it make a difference in your position or mine? I doubt it.”

    HA HA HA HA – You’re going to disregard anything factual/relevant you aren’t predisposed to agree with? But everyone else’s opinions are the problem here? Lovely…

  17. Sad, Shibumi … get a clue … Republicans passed plenty of bills without reading them … and didn’t give the Democrats time to read them … how could that have happened? That’s not good practice, but did you complain then? Sure, Rush, Beck & Hannity throw an occasional barb at Bush, but they save their major, brainless venom for liberals and progressives who are “destroying America”. Too late, “conservatives” have already destroyed it … it’s “Dead America Walking”. See http://www.exponentialimprovement.com/cms/jobsjun09.shtml.

    To “deal with an issue” like health insurance, one has to actually think (google “Health Care Dynamics”), not throw the word socialism around to distract from the flaws that have caused capitalism to fail. See “The 9/22/08 Economic Crisis” at http://www.exponentialimprovement.com/cms/econcrisis922.shtml#article.

    The article “America’s Sea of Red Ink Was Years in the Making” By DAVID LEONHARDT, 7/9/09, is based on CBO data which “conservatives” are fond of these days when it casts doubt on Democratic plans. But when it doesn’t support “conservative” claims … well, not so much. http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/10/business/economy/10leonhardt.html. Here’s a summary of the findings:

    37% of the deficit was caused by what the CBO calls the “economic cycle.” [Note: that’s actually not from a “cycle”, but from “long-term structural changes” that have destroyed the economy thanks to “free trade” & deregulation.] 33% is from new legislation signed by Bush. 20% is from Obama’s extension of several Bush policies [those who supported Bush shouldn’t complain about the above … they supported them].

    “About 7% comes from the stimulus bill that Mr. Obama signed in February. And only 3% comes from Mr. Obama’s agenda on health care, education, energy and other areas. If the analysis is extended further into the future, well beyond 2012, the Obama agenda accounts for only a slightly higher share of the projected deficits. …”

    Oh, my. Beck, Rush, & Hannity are liars … plain and simple-minded.

  18. Sad, Shibumi … get a clue … Republicans passed plenty of bills without reading them … and didn’t give the Democrats time to read them … how could that have happened? That’s not good practice, but did you complain then? Sure, Rush, Beck & Hannity throw an occasional barb at Bush, but they save their major, brainless venom for liberals and progressives who are “destroying America”. Too late, “conservatives” have already destroyed it … it’s “Dead America Walking”. See http://www.exponentialimprovement.com/cms/jobsjun09.shtml.

    To “deal with an issue” like health insurance, one has to actually think (google “Health Care Dynamics”), not throw the word socialism around to distract from the flaws that have caused capitalism to fail. See “The 9/22/08 Economic Crisis” at http://www.exponentialimprovement.com/cms/econcrisis922.shtml#article.

    The article “America’s Sea of Red Ink Was Years in the Making” By DAVID LEONHARDT, 7/9/09, is based on CBO data which “conservatives” are fond of these days when it casts doubt on Democratic plans. But when it doesn’t support “conservative” claims … well, not so much. http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/10/business/economy/10leonhardt.html. Here’s a summary of the findings:

    37% of the deficit was caused by what the CBO calls the “economic cycle.” [Note: that’s actually not from a “cycle”, but from “long-term structural changes” that have destroyed the economy thanks to “free trade” & deregulation.] 33% is from new legislation signed by Bush. 20% is from Obama’s extension of several Bush policies [those who supported Bush shouldn’t complain about the above … they supported them].

    “About 7% comes from the stimulus bill that Mr. Obama signed in February. And only 3% comes from Mr. Obama’s agenda on health care, education, energy and other areas. If the analysis is extended further into the future, well beyond 2012, the Obama agenda accounts for only a slightly higher share of the projected deficits. …”

    Oh, my. Beck, Rush, & Hannity are liars … plain and simple-minded.

  19. I guess you need to take the CBO’s estimates and projections as the truth,none of the present health care plans can be sustained without incresed taxes(including the middle class. That would make Obama as much a deceiver (read liar) as “Bush the senior” was about taxes.
    Obama is being hammered by the economy ( which is not his fault) just as W was by 9/11 ( which was not his fault).The major difference is that Obama will forge ahead with huge deficiet spending, even while the government income is falling by a whopping 18%, that is what will hopefully make him a one term president.
    The CBO and economists are predicting depression type deficiets and massive trillion dollar debts,that will effect our children and my grandchildren’s ability to enjoy a normal life style, just to pay off.
    The CBO also said that the recession would run it’s course in about 12 to 16 months,WITHOUT the wastefull 780 billion stimulas bill, which was loaded with PORK. Every membr of congress who inserted a favorite pork project into a bill designed to “save the economy” should be removed from those positions.
    The problem with that is ,there is not enough of you who have the courage to vote them out of office.If they “bring the bacon home” you vote them back in,and always will. The Democrates have it all their way now, lets see just what they can do for our country,but with the same losers in office ,on both sides, I predict it will continue to slip.

  20. I guess you need to take the CBO’s estimates and projections as the truth,none of the present health care plans can be sustained without incresed taxes(including the middle class. That would make Obama as much a deceiver (read liar) as “Bush the senior” was about taxes.
    Obama is being hammered by the economy ( which is not his fault) just as W was by 9/11 ( which was not his fault).The major difference is that Obama will forge ahead with huge deficiet spending, even while the government income is falling by a whopping 18%, that is what will hopefully make him a one term president.
    The CBO and economists are predicting depression type deficiets and massive trillion dollar debts,that will effect our children and my grandchildren’s ability to enjoy a normal life style, just to pay off.
    The CBO also said that the recession would run it’s course in about 12 to 16 months,WITHOUT the wastefull 780 billion stimulas bill, which was loaded with PORK. Every membr of congress who inserted a favorite pork project into a bill designed to “save the economy” should be removed from those positions.
    The problem with that is ,there is not enough of you who have the courage to vote them out of office.If they “bring the bacon home” you vote them back in,and always will. The Democrates have it all their way now, lets see just what they can do for our country,but with the same losers in office ,on both sides, I predict it will continue to slip.

  21. Mongo: Bush was “hammered” very little about 9/11 even though he ignored warnings that there would be an attack. Bush was hammered for, and should be in prison for, attacking and occupying Iraq that had nothing to do with 9/11, the war profiteering, and the millions dead & displaced.

    The idea that the “recession would run it’s course in about 12 to 16 months, WITHOUT the wastefull 780 billion stimulas bill, which was loaded with PORK” is entirely wrong.

    Why? Because the $787B in stimulus pales beside the $7 trillion in cumulative “trade” anti-stimulus from 1980 to 2006, with $5.1 trillion of that from 2000 through 2008. It’s anti-stimulus because Net Exports subtracts from GDP when it’s negative.

    What’s called “free trade” has been like an anti-matter black hole that has undermined wages and sucked prosperity from the U.S. economy. Because Obama is not addressing the “trade deficit”, the stimulus will fail.

    This is NOT a recession; it is the beginning of a depression due to structural changes in the economy … we don’t make anything anymore. This is the root cause of the already-in-place destruction of the U.S. economy.

    The problem is NOT high taxes; it’s low wages. That’s thanks to an economic war since Reagan on those in the bottom 80% of income. See “Data on Income & Tax Distributions” at http://www.exponentialimprovement.com/cms/wealthhappens.shtml#inc&taxdist.

    And why has there been this war against the middle class and the poor. It’s because the nation has slipped so far to the “economic right” that the “economic center” now looks like the “left”. See “Hannity Insanity” at http://www.exponentialimprovement.com/cms/hannityinsanity.shtml.

    As far as pork, can’t find numbers on the stimulus, but the main complaints were about the 8,570 earmarks in the earlier omnibus bill … according to the Taxpayers for Common Sense. But “Member projects – aka earmarks or “pork” – account for less than 2 percent of spending in the $410 billion omnibus bill on the floor of the Senate this week, but they’re drawing most of the opposition fire.” http://features.csmonitor.com/politics/2009/03/03/pesky-earmarks-still-in-eye-of-budget-storm/. That’s been blown way out of proportion.

  22. Mongo: Bush was “hammered” very little about 9/11 even though he ignored warnings that there would be an attack. Bush was hammered for, and should be in prison for, attacking and occupying Iraq that had nothing to do with 9/11, the war profiteering, and the millions dead & displaced.

    The idea that the “recession would run it’s course in about 12 to 16 months, WITHOUT the wastefull 780 billion stimulas bill, which was loaded with PORK” is entirely wrong.

    Why? Because the $787B in stimulus pales beside the $7 trillion in cumulative “trade” anti-stimulus from 1980 to 2006, with $5.1 trillion of that from 2000 through 2008. It’s anti-stimulus because Net Exports subtracts from GDP when it’s negative.

    What’s called “free trade” has been like an anti-matter black hole that has undermined wages and sucked prosperity from the U.S. economy. Because Obama is not addressing the “trade deficit”, the stimulus will fail.

    This is NOT a recession; it is the beginning of a depression due to structural changes in the economy … we don’t make anything anymore. This is the root cause of the already-in-place destruction of the U.S. economy.

    The problem is NOT high taxes; it’s low wages. That’s thanks to an economic war since Reagan on those in the bottom 80% of income. See “Data on Income & Tax Distributions” at http://www.exponentialimprovement.com/cms/wealthhappens.shtml#inc&taxdist.

    And why has there been this war against the middle class and the poor. It’s because the nation has slipped so far to the “economic right” that the “economic center” now looks like the “left”. See “Hannity Insanity” at http://www.exponentialimprovement.com/cms/hannityinsanity.shtml.

    As far as pork, can’t find numbers on the stimulus, but the main complaints were about the 8,570 earmarks in the earlier omnibus bill … according to the Taxpayers for Common Sense. But “Member projects – aka earmarks or “pork” – account for less than 2 percent of spending in the $410 billion omnibus bill on the floor of the Senate this week, but they’re drawing most of the opposition fire.” http://features.csmonitor.com/politics/2009/03/03/pesky-earmarks-still-in-eye-of-budget-storm/. That’s been blown way out of proportion.

  23. “For those who understand the history of Social Security, the idea was to pay into the system so as to draw out what you paid in, not what your descendants paid in. And back in the day when enacted, social security was not a part of the general fund and it was actually secure.”
    To Mr Shibumi, regarding the long comment that prefaced it was opinion based: I’m pretty sure (and glad I don’t have to provide documentation) that the idea of the system was always that the benefits would be paid by the current workforce. I forget the woman’s name, but I do remember the story of the first SSB recipient who only worked a short time but then lived to collect much more in benefits than she had ever paid in. Also, if what you are saying is true, then where is the payout to the estate of people who die before reaching retirement?
    Some of the things that I think were wrong, that happened to SSB along the way were to include SSI, disability and benefits to minors. They are all necessary, but could have had their own program – and then the SSB program could have been run more like a valuable, mandatory pension plan. However, that isn’t what was done – so a fix is needed – and I don’t really think the fix is to reduce benefits. It could be to remove ceiling over which we don’t pay in. It could be to add a year on to the retirement age, reducing SSB for people who take early or sweetening SSB for people who work longer. I’m sure this would be very unpopular – but it could also be to prorate benefits to the cost of living in particular areas. (This could also be done with other government credits such as Earned Income Credit) And, this would reduce the difference between the “giver” and “taker” states. It would also change the pattern of elder diaspora. It’s not good for some states to have an unbalanced mix of population.
    I’m not saying that I think anything should be changed based on the points I made above. I’m more than willing to pay my share to keep America progressive. But, it’s more and more obvious that I’m going to pay my share whether or not America remains progressive. It’s my “opinion” – that even if the Iraqi experiment is proved to be successful in the long run, it was never justified to use American lives and money in a corrupt and inefficient way to invade and impose a system of government to our liking in Iraq – when it could have been spent to provide adequate healthcare to the vulnerable, uninsured or underinsured. The American tax dollars could have also been better spent stimulating our economy and jobs. The better our jobs & economy are, the more money flows into Medicare and SSB.

  24. “For those who understand the history of Social Security, the idea was to pay into the system so as to draw out what you paid in, not what your descendants paid in. And back in the day when enacted, social security was not a part of the general fund and it was actually secure.”
    To Mr Shibumi, regarding the long comment that prefaced it was opinion based: I’m pretty sure (and glad I don’t have to provide documentation) that the idea of the system was always that the benefits would be paid by the current workforce. I forget the woman’s name, but I do remember the story of the first SSB recipient who only worked a short time but then lived to collect much more in benefits than she had ever paid in. Also, if what you are saying is true, then where is the payout to the estate of people who die before reaching retirement?
    Some of the things that I think were wrong, that happened to SSB along the way were to include SSI, disability and benefits to minors. They are all necessary, but could have had their own program – and then the SSB program could have been run more like a valuable, mandatory pension plan. However, that isn’t what was done – so a fix is needed – and I don’t really think the fix is to reduce benefits. It could be to remove ceiling over which we don’t pay in. It could be to add a year on to the retirement age, reducing SSB for people who take early or sweetening SSB for people who work longer. I’m sure this would be very unpopular – but it could also be to prorate benefits to the cost of living in particular areas. (This could also be done with other government credits such as Earned Income Credit) And, this would reduce the difference between the “giver” and “taker” states. It would also change the pattern of elder diaspora. It’s not good for some states to have an unbalanced mix of population.
    I’m not saying that I think anything should be changed based on the points I made above. I’m more than willing to pay my share to keep America progressive. But, it’s more and more obvious that I’m going to pay my share whether or not America remains progressive. It’s my “opinion” – that even if the Iraqi experiment is proved to be successful in the long run, it was never justified to use American lives and money in a corrupt and inefficient way to invade and impose a system of government to our liking in Iraq – when it could have been spent to provide adequate healthcare to the vulnerable, uninsured or underinsured. The American tax dollars could have also been better spent stimulating our economy and jobs. The better our jobs & economy are, the more money flows into Medicare and SSB.

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