Franklin County Democrats

The official site of the Democratic Party of Franklin County, Missouri

Browsing Posts published in October, 2013

The Washington Missourian has published my Letter to the Editor, Today’s Republicans Are Different.

 The difference between today’s Republicans and those of yesteryear is impossible to ignore.

 In the 1980s Republican President Ronald Reagan joined with a Democratic Congress to nearly double the Social Security and Medicare payroll taxes. Economist Ravi Batra described the reason for doing this, “That tax created — for the first time in history — a giant savings account that Social Security could use to pay for the Boomers’ retirement.”

This brand of reasoned legislating is no longer possible. In fact, today’s GOP seems intent on reversing the sound policy making of their political forefathers.

Not only did every Republican member of Missouri’s congressional delegation, including Blaine Luetkemeyer, vote to allow the United States to default on our debts, they seem determined to cut Social Security and Medicare benefits.

In fact, Rep. Vicky Hartzler joined her Republican colleagues in sending a letter to Speaker John Boehner demanding “reforms” to Social Security. The letter recommended changes to Social Security, including: raising the retirement age; “adjusting the inflationary formula used for calculating future growth”; means-testing benefits for high-income recipients; and lowering the cap on wages subject to the Social Security tax “to its Reagan-era levels.”

Interesting that the GOP can remember the wage cap of the Reagan era among other ways to cut benefits to seniors but ignores the Reagan-era payroll tax increases baby boomers have paid for decades to ensure their benefits.

Missourians should be watchful for other “bait and switch” tactics from today’s Republicans. It is likely senior citizens won’t be the only ones promised one thing by yesterday’s GOP and given another by today’s Republicans.

 

 

This week’s audio netcast: Economist George Tyler tells us what went wrong with the American economy. One short answer, he says, is “stock options.” And Bill Press interviews Danny Kanner of the Democratic Governors Association about how the Virginia race could be a bellwether for Democratic gains next year.

Think NSA spying is scary?  Look what happened on this day in history.

October 30
Ed Meese, attorney general in the Ronald Reagan
administration, urges employers to begin spying on workers “in locker rooms, parking lots, shipping and mail room areas and even the nearby taverns” to try to catch them using drugs – 1986

Republicans in your locker room for 27 years?  Wait until they get in your bedroom.

 

Chris Hayes describes the message of his new book, Twilight of the Elites in this short video.

Do you still believe in American society being built on merit?

Jonathan Cohn has authored Obamacare Rate Shock and Premium Joy, Now it’s real.

So here’s a quick refresher on what’s really happening:

1. For the vast majority of Americans, very little is changing. Most Americans get insurance either through Medicare, Medicaid, or an employer. The Affordable Care Act isn’t doing much to alter premiums or out-of-pockets of these plans, at least for the time being. The big changes are mostly taking place in the “non-group” market—that is, for individuals who buy coverage on their own rather than through an employer.

2. One of Obamacare’s primary goals is to make sure everybody has a decent health insurance policy. Under the law, every plan should include a comprehensive set of benefits and put some limits on what people pay out-of-pocket. The policies now available in the non-group market frequently don’t meet those standards. They might leave out benefits like maternity or mental health—or they might have truly exorbitant deductibles. Starting next year, insurers can’t sell new policies unless they meet Obamacare’s standards. That will tend to make insurance more expensive.

3. Another major goal of Obamacare is to make sure all people can get coverage at uniform prices, regardless of pre-existing conditions. This is known as “guaranteed issue” and “community rating.” Today insurers frequently charge higher premiums or deny coverage altogether to people with pre-existing conditions. This allows them to keep prices low for the young and the healthy. Obamacare will force insurers to abandon these practices. But if the old and the sick get to pay less, the young and the healthy will have to pay more.

 

Kids’ Chance of Missouri is now accepting scholarship applications for children of employees who have been seriously injured or killed in work related accidents.  Click the link to learn the specifics.  Here are a few answers to frequent questions.

Which children are eligible for the       Scholarships? To be eligible for the Scholarship the child’s       parent must have sustained a serious injury or a fatality in a Missouri       work related accident covered by workers’ compensation. The parent’s       injury or death must be compensable under Missouri Workers’ Compensation       Law, Chapter 287 RSMo.

What are the criteria for the Scholarships? The       applicant must meet standards set by the Board of Directors of KID’S       CHANCE Inc. of Missouri. The standards are based primarily on the       financial needs of the students.

What is the length of the Scholarship? The       Scholarship is good for one school year or term and may be contingent upon       grades. The applicant may reapply at the end of one school year or term       for the Scholarship for the following school year or term. Renewals are       contingent upon availability of funds.

What does the Scholarship cover? Scholarships are       applicable at any accredited vocational school or college within the       United States. Scholarships are paid directly to the educational       institution. Scholarships vary with the needs and educational expenses of       the student. Scholarships may cover tuition, books, supplies, housing,       meals and other expenses not covered by other grants and/or       Scholarships.

In his New Rules segment Bill Maher takes on Minimum Wage deniers and leaves their arguments smoldering in the rubble.  Beware that there is one example of profane language in this clip.

 

The Million American Jobs Project has released this short video that describes one way to create American jobs.  Let’s do it!

The AFL-CIO has this story of a New Jersey businessman providing paid sick days, up to 40 hours a year.  The result, profits, low turnover, and happy employees.

Jersey City business owner Steven Kalcanides, who runs Helen’s Pizza, invited Mayor Steven Fulop to officially sign the city’s new paid sick days ordinance at his restaurant. Kalcanides already has been offering his employees paid sick days and not only has he been able to continue making a profit, his turnover has been very low, with many of his workers staying with him for more than five years.

“As far as I know, it’s been working for me,” he says. “I don’t see it as being the straw that breaks the camel’s back on a business.” Kalcanides says that the new law is how things should be done. “My business is like my family. Everybody that works for me is like family.”

The new ordinance would allow employees at businesses with 10 or more employees to earn one hour of paid sick time for every 30 hours they work, up to a maximum of 40 hours per year. The second largest city in New Jersey will join San Francisco; Seattle; Portland, Ore.; Washington, D.C.; and New York City in requiring paid sick days. The state of Connecticut also has a similar requirement.

Have you seen this e-mail about the unprecedented number of staff at Michelle Obama’s beck and call.

Are these ladies and gentlemen really assistants or do they have a stable ofU NO Watts?
She is what is called “High Maintenance”…
Mary Lincoln was taken to task for purchasing China for the White House during the Civil War.
And Mamie Eisenhower had to shell out the salary for her personal secretary from her husband’s salary.
Total Personal Staff members for other first ladies paid by taxpayers:
Mamie Eisenhower:  One– paid for personally out of President’s salary.
Jackie Kennedy:  One
Rosaline Carter:   One
Barbara Bush:       One
Hilary Clinton:      Three
Laura Bush:         One
Michele Obama:  Twenty-two 
The truth is found at Snopes…
In fact, according to Anita McBride, Laura Bush’s former Chief of Staff,  Mrs. Bush had between 24 and 26 staffers working for her by the end  of her husband’s second term in office.  It’s therefore fair to say that the  size of Michelle Obama’s staff is not “unprecedented,” but rather on a par with  her immediate predecessor’s.

Moreover, according to the Associated  Press, several other First Ladies had larger numbers of personnel working for  them than Michelle Obama does:

Feel free to share with your conservative uncle.
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