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Posts Tagged ‘Politics’

It is now widely recognized that great changes must be made in the American way of life.  Not only can we not face the rest of the world while consuming and polluting as we do, we cannot for long face ourselves while acknowledging the violence and chaos in which we live.  The choice is clear: either we do nothing and allow a miserable and probably catastrophic future to overtake us, or we use our knowledge about human behavior to create a social environment in which we shall live productive and creative lives and do so without jeopardizing the chances that those who follow us will be able to do the same.
   —  B. F. Skinner
From the “new” (1976) preface to his book / novel: “Walden Two
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On This Day In:
2017 He Is Alone
2016 Compensation
2015 Charlie Redux
2014 The Crux
2013 Erosion And Rechannelling
Alliance, n.
2012 How Many Thought… (One I Know Of)
Choices And Decisions
2011 Speed Spoils
Simply Intended
2010 A Second 4 Hour Jog
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I cannot believe in a God who wants to be praised all the time.
  ―  Friedrich Nietzsche
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On This Day In:
2017 Pleasures
2016 Why Not?
2015 Je Suis Charlie
2014 To The Nines
2013 Higher And Truer
2012 Life’s Last Question
2011 A Single Heartbeat
A Little Male Humor – WHY MEN SHOULDN’T RETIRE

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The divisions are now as physical as they are emotional and intellectual: in the 2016 election, of America’s 3,113 counties, just 303 went to either candidate by 10 points or fewer; 1,196 saw landslides of 50 points or more.  We have self-sorted into private pockets of affirmation, and where we live shapes what we believe.  “These days, Democrats and Republicans no longer stop at disagreeing with each other’s ideas,” argues Paul Taylor of the Pew Research Center.  “Many in each party now deny the other’s facts, disapprove of each other’s lifestyles, avoid each other’s neighborhoods, impugn each other’s motives, doubt each other’s patriotism, can’t stomach each other’s news sources and bring different value systems to such core social institutions as religion, marriage and parenthood.  It’s as if they belong not to rival parties but alien tribes.”
During his campaign, Trump engaged and inspired millions of voters who had given up on government and were desperate for a new vision, a new voice.  Their needs are real and urgent, and have been largely ignored as the President reduced the office to a vanity plate.  He has shown how little loyalty he feels to friends and allies who honor some principle higher than his self-interest.  In the aftermath of Charlottesville, we saw the reverse: we saw his reluctance to turn away from people who admire him, claim him, even if they do so in the name of beliefs that Americans have died fighting to defeat.  There will be more marches, more clashes and, if the white supremacist leaders are right, more lives lost before this latest battle for the nation’s soul resolves.  But it is a historic shame and sorrow that so few Americans can come to that struggle with the faith that their President is on their side.
   –  Nancy Gibbs
From her editorial: “Will the Nation Succeed After Charlottesville Where Donald Trump Failed?
Time Magazine, dtd: Aug. 17, 2017
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On This Day In:
2017 Right
2016 At Least One Step
2015 Month To Month Rental
2014 Professional Beliefs
2013 Books Are…
2012 True Distinguishing Marks
2010 Sub-300

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It is harder to conceal ignorance than to acquire knowledge.
   —  Arnold H. Glasow
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On This Day In:
2016 We Did This
2015 I’m Talking To You
Forced (Again)
2014 We Are Not A Fearful Nation!
2013 Risking Truth
2012 Working On Reality
2011 Massive Contradictory Changes

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The media are desperately afraid of being accused of bias.  And that’s partly because there’s a whole machine out there, an organized attempt to accuse them of bias whenever they say anything that the Right doesn’t like.  So rather than really try to report things objectively, they settle for being even-handed, which is not the same thing.  One of my lines in a column — in which a number of people thought I was insulting them personally — was that if Bush said the Earth was flat, the mainstream media would have stories with the headline: ‘Shape of Earth — Views Differ.’  Then they’d quote some Democrats saying that it was round.
   ―  Paul Krugman
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On This Day In:
2016 Control In The Age Of Entanglement
2015 Okay, Maybe Not Ceaseless
2014 Can Do
2013 Are You Helping?
2012 Inside All Truth Is A Vacuum
2011 So, Whom Are We Trying To Fool Then?

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Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored.
  ―  Aldous Huxley
From:  Complete Essays 2, 1926-29
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On This Day In:
2016 Starting To Stumble
2015 Begin Combat
I Am A Runner
2014 Just Dig ‘N It, Why?
2013 Additions
The Object Of Instruction
2012 Telling Her
2011 On Torture

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The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.
   ―  Ayn Rand
Today, the Republican controlled Congress and Presidency passed and signed [* see correction below] the largest tax cut for the American wealthy class in history.  While it is true that almost everyone who pays Federal Income Taxes will receive a reduction in taxes, the top 20% of all income earners will receive over 80% of the tax savings.  This includes “poor” little #LyingDonald who promised any tax cut would be primarily directed at the working / middle class in American (those making $75,000.00 or less), while “millionaires” would have to pay more in taxes.  This is, if fact, the EXACT opposite of what Congress has just passed.  It seems the “investment” of corporate America in buying the Republican party over the last 40 years has at last paid off.
My prediction:  We will see a booming stock market as the cash reserves being held by American companies overseas comes home to buy back stock and pay dividends with almost NO gain in income being paid to employees.  In other words, if you own large chunks of stock, you’ll see higher dividends (more money and less taxes).  If you own small lots of stock, expect to be screwed by the corporations buying the small lots up prior to paying out the dividends (in other words, you’ll be getting screwed).  If you are a worker, get ready to see more job uncertainty as jobs (and factories) will  continue to move overseas and be automated when left here in the states.  You will only see a salary increase if you can upgrade your education / skill level (personally pay for it) AND find another employer willing to hire you.  There will be a continuing abundance of workers and a continuing shortage of well paying jobs.  Oh, yeah, and almost none of the jobs / companies will have pensions, so you’ll be on your own for that.  But don’t worry, you can pay for your retirement savings with all that extra money you’ll be making.  And don’t count on Social Security or Medicare for your retirement because the tax deficit the Republicans are creating with the tax give-away will be used as the excuse to cut “entitlements” (Social Security and Medicare) next year.  After all, deficit created debt was the reason the Republicans routinely gave / used to try to ruin the Obama Administration’s economic recovery for the last eight years.  You remember the last eight years we’ve had such anemic economic growth.  That anemic growth was because debt (big government and over-regulation) prevented economic growth which should have happened.  So, now the Republicans have intentionally increased the deficit, which will inevitably increase the debt, which they will then use as their excuse to cut spending on social benefits.
Lord, save us from these treasonous Republicans and give us back honest conservatives who sought a limited government which paid for the things (wars, infrastructure and a social safety net) which the majority of Americans discussed openly, debated honestly, and ultimately arrived at consensus on.
[* CORRECTION:  I was incorrect in stating the President has already signed this tax bill.  In fact, as of today (Thursday 21 Dec. 2017), he has not, and it appears he may not sign the bill until next year (3 Jan 2018).  The reason for this is it appears the signing will trigger an automatic reduction in Medicare the year immediately after signing.  If it is signed in January 2018, the automatic trigger does not occur until 2019.  Obviously, the Republicans do not want to do this in an election year, so the signing will be delayed.  The bill has not yet been “enrolled” – that is, formally printed and presented to the President.  This is the point which actually starts the “pocket veto” clock.  If the law had been enrolled on passing, the President would have ten days to veto or sign the bill.  The ten days does not include Sundays, so it is actually a twelve day rule.  Of course, this assumes Congress breaks for Christmas.  If Congress is in session for the full twelve days after a bill is enrolled, there is no pocket veto and the bill becomes law after ten days if the President does not sign it.  This “trigger” is still being debated in Congress.  If it is decided it doesn’t happen until 2019, irrespective of signing, then Trump will sign the bill before Christmas or as soon as possible.  If it is decided it (the trigger) happens in 2018, the Republicans will push the signing date back until January to make sure the the reduction does not happen during an election year.
Also, it appears the tax benefits to the top 20% will be only 60% (-ish) through 2027.  After that, the personal reductions will go away and then 80% (-ish) benefit will be for corporations and the very wealthy.  The benefits to the corporations and the very wealthy are permanent, while the benefits to the middle and working class are limited (sunsetted).  —  KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2016 Something Authentic Happened
2015 Back On The Bricks
On, Rocinante!!
2014 Changing Frequently
2013 Trifles
2012 Simple, Ordinary And Wonderous
2011 Humane Writers

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