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  1. Old Comment
    homerj07's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 8-28-2014 Looking down the Barrel

    Why not kill the argument of a "Welfare State" and take the people on welfare and put them to work on infrastructure. There are a lot of people who can do manual labor BUT there are also a lot of people who can do surveying, computer, managerial and even secretary work.

    This is a two fold success. We get the infrastructure improvements we need and we take people off welfare and put them too work.


    Any thoughts? Am I being overly optimistic or stupid?
    Posted 08-31-2014 at 11:18 AM by homerj07 homerj07 is offline
  2. Old Comment
    SmashMouth's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 2-24-2014 The $500 Millon Man

    Make sure you have stops in place.
    Posted 03-11-2014 at 10:47 PM by SmashMouth SmashMouth is offline
  3. Old Comment
    TheOak's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 2-1-2014 Is New York Shining a Light on the Obvious?

    This is what happens when you host the Super Bowl and its festivities in separate states and cities.

    Historically they have not been hosted on anyone's home field so there is a small disconnect between the game and that cities fans who love another team. Hosting the game and festivities in separate cities and states creates a further disconnect.

    Goodell tried to do the city of New York a favor... after all that is there the NFl's corporate office is. I will assume there were under the table discussions between himself and the cities chief politicians. I can not for any other reason logically understand why they had it the way they did.
    Posted 02-03-2014 at 07:30 AM by TheOak TheOak is offline
  4. Old Comment
    TheOak's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 1- 24 - 2014 Just Plain Mean

    I will go beyond all that has and hasn't been said by Christie or about Christie.
    Christie is the Governor of New Jersey, he was born in Newark, NJ. and presently lives in NJ... Thats a home town guy that should know every nook and cranny, the traffic issue was around 8 miles from where he grew up, 30 miles from where he presently lives.... so he is intimately familiar with the area and its traffic.

    As huge of an ordeal it was lasting three days... Christie never asked WTF is going on? Not once did he try to figure out if there was a way to expedite what ever it was that was going on so that it had minimal impact on emergency vehicles and school buses? Did he just figure it was a convenient mishap?

    Plausible deniability was created and is being maintained so just like CEOs, and all the higher tier politicians surrounding Corporations and Governmental agencies where wrong doing is going on... He either knew and should be personally held accountable or he didn't know and should be removed from office for being inept.

    For the second paragraph in your reply I will leave you with a quote ~ "What does it matter"?
    Posted 01-27-2014 at 01:21 PM by TheOak TheOak is offline
  5. Old Comment
    xan's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 1- 24 - 2014 Just Plain Mean

    Oak, you're on the money here. In his 2 hour press conference, Christie noted that he "wasn't a micromanager," but the cameras didn't show the snickering of any of the aids or legislators or lobbyists in attendance. His reputation is that of a supreme interventionist. That his chubby hands weren't involved in this is virtually inconceivable, but as a former prosecuter, understandable that he didn't document his involvement so he could have "plausible deny-ability."

    It should be noted that several top people did lose their jobs at the IRS, but not for "Benghazi" (in brackets here because there were 30 other attacks on embassies and other US installations that same day, so picking out one and not the others gives the administration problems - where's the diligence on those?)

    As for Enron, far more people than Skilling were responsible for that mess, but they got away. It was rife with corruption at many levels. Its a shame that it took almost 2 years and $40 million to just get that one guy. Makes you wonder why they go after any white collar guy at all, especially in Texas, where flouting the federal law appears to be a cause for celebration.
    Posted 01-27-2014 at 12:55 PM by xan xan is online now
  6. Old Comment
    TheOak's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 1- 24 - 2014 Just Plain Mean

    This entire Nation has failed itself in respect to accountability. Even in the case of Christie, someone took the fall but it was not the top of the food chain. The double standard between the private sector and politicians is bathed in hypocrisy.

    When foul play was found at Enron, Skilling was held accountable. When foul play was found in Christies administration a lamb was sacrificed. The higher up you go in the political food chain the less accountability is held as evident by no one being held accountable for the IRS/Tea Party scandal, Benghazi, etc...
    Posted 01-27-2014 at 08:03 AM by TheOak TheOak is offline
  7. Old Comment
    xan's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 1- 24 - 2014 Just Plain Mean

    I think there are a couple of key differences between the Christie Bridge and the IRS 501c4 scandals.
    • The Christie top staff conceived and initiated the bridge program without authority or notice.
    • The Congress gave the authority to the IRS to make determinations, and the actions taken were conceived and initiated by an admitted "conservative Republican" the Cincinnati field office.
    • The CB initiative was political retribution for not supporting the "bipartisan governor"
    • The IRS initiative was a "shortcut" to determine if applicants were trying to gain undeserved tax exempt status as Congress cut the budget for the staff performing this work. Evidence suggests that conservative, liberal and progressive identified political applicants were given extra scrutiny, though anti-tax, Israel, and Occupy applications got more frequent scrutiny.
    • The result of the CB initiative created a dangerous public hazard and cost millions in wasted time and money and energy.
    • The applicants for the 501c4 status were allowed by law to proceed doing business as if they had achieved their exempt status during the review process. Only one applicant was denied. No firm suffered damages, only few endured increased scrutiny.

    I guess I'd have to ask this question:
    If forced to chose which violation you'd want, do you want to have the government indiscriminately block your access to hospitals, bridges and commerce because you didn't vote for them or do you want more scrutiny on people who don't want to pay taxes?

    As a personal editorial, I would like greater scrutiny on tax exempt companies. The potential for abuse, especially with the 501c4 "donor undisclosed" feature, is the primary reason the IRS got in trouble in the first place. Congress has to fix the tax laws and also appoint somebody other than the IRS to make the determination as to who should or shouldn't be granted tax-exempt status.

    As a further note, my organization applied in August of 2012 for 501c3 Tax exempt status to conduct basic immune system research. We have yet to receive our assignment. We are not disadvantaged by this at all.
    Posted 01-24-2014 at 03:18 PM by xan xan is online now
  8. Old Comment
    Utah_Saint's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 1- 24 - 2014 Just Plain Mean

    Do you feel this is a different kind of preferential politics than the IRS targeting of specific political groups?
    Posted 01-24-2014 at 07:38 AM by Utah_Saint Utah_Saint is online now
  9. Old Comment
    SmashMouth's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 11-8-2013. Friendly Fire

    2014 people.... Do something!
    Posted 11-08-2013 at 08:29 PM by SmashMouth SmashMouth is offline
  10. Old Comment
    Posted 11-08-2013 at 02:17 PM by TheOak TheOak is offline
  11. Old Comment
    saintfan's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 10-2-2013 Shut Down and Loving it.

    I haven't read all the responses, but an early response insinuated the "Peace" movement (which was any damn thing but peaceful by the time it became popular - bastardized by then) influenced the end of the Vietnam War.


    The author of this post must surely have skipped History Class. This can be verified by simply looking at the date of the first troop reduction. Then again, one must know a bit about the "Peace" movement to make any meaning of the initial reduction date, which is where this comment makes me laugh and spit skoal on my screen.

    Elvis is not dead. Check the spelling on the stone.

    Also in fact the United States ramped up its involvement in Vietnam through the duration of the "Peace" movement. Good Lord in Heaven how far we have fallen...
    Posted 11-01-2013 at 09:49 AM by saintfan saintfan is offline
    Updated 11-01-2013 at 02:06 PM by saintfan
  12. Old Comment
    SmashMouth's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 10-2-2013 Shut Down and Loving it.

    As all industries should be, including embedded and payroll deducted taxes, if the consumer had to actually shell out from their wallets and write a check instead of dealing with our purposefully confusingly designed system, there would be pressure borne in all industries in keeping costs down, not that it would matter for the moocher crowd as they are on the dole anyway.
    Posted 10-30-2013 at 12:32 PM by SmashMouth SmashMouth is offline
  13. Old Comment
    TheOak's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 10-2-2013 Shut Down and Loving it.

    Do you understand the difference between cost and price?

    Here is a rudimentary explanation for you.
    Economic Perspective: Price versus cost

    Hopefully you can understand what i am about to say next, as it is very basic logic.

    These are hypo dollar amounts but you should get the picture.

    A bottle of Tylenol costs $6 to make and get to the local CVS, the local CVS charges you a price of $12. The on top of $6 that the CVS is not all profit most of it is consumed by indirect costs by CVS.

    That same bottle of Tylenol has the same cost to a hospital but the hospital bills you or your insurance $15-$50 per pill because; some will say "the hospital has more indirect costs", some will say " because you get charged for the whole bottle whether you use it or not". The reasons go on as long as the internet.

    You are more than welcome to explore it your self.
    10 Wildly Overinflated Hospital Costs | Reader's Digest

    Now get past all of that and for arguments sake your insurance was billed $25 for that Tylenol pill, that is still not the price to you as the Insurance Company has indirect costs built into your premiums to cover the costs of running their company. As a matter of how insurance works you never pay the full price for anything, the costs to that Insurance Company get redistributed amongst all policy holders.

    Now we are going to add Government indirects instead of Insurance Company on top of that. ACA has an administration, it has teams of people going door to door that are getting paid, its mas many levels of operational administration that normally make more in total comp that their counter parts in the private sector depending... That is all tax money... Oh and I will add $$100-500M for a website that doesn't work just for the hell of it.
    Obamacare's broken website cost more than LinkedIn, Spotify combined | Digital Trends

    Going back to my previous comment days ago. The ACA has done nothing to address the costs associated with that Tylenol and all of the gouging that goes on up the chain. All it has done, or shall I say, promises to do is lower the rates for Health Insurance... But it doesn't exactly do that does it? It functions like insurance so it doesn't lower the rates, it redistributes them into a larger pool. This is why the ACA fails with out the healthy younger participation.

    If you want to truly lower healthcare costs, stop the price for the end payer for a tablet of Tylenol from being in the $100 range.

    Why am I vehemently against this you still ask? My tax dollars are being burnt by incompetent politicians who turn a blind eye to the gouging that is the basis and structure of the health Care Industry.. They do not want to resolve the problem, they just want to put a patch on it by taking more money from me.

    Now the Government is bringing in Verizon to fix their website? WTF??? More cost on top of wasted cost. Do you realize how many people the Government could insure for what they spent on that frikken website alone?
    Posted 10-23-2013 at 12:11 PM by TheOak TheOak is offline
  14. Old Comment
    SmashMouth's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 10-2-2013 Shut Down and Loving it.

    Isn't it interesting, however, that no one actually implemented solutions that likely would have made a difference? Solutions like, buying insurance across state lines, as you can with auto insurance; tort reform which has worked in Texas; Changing patent laws for pharmaceuticals to make scripts more reasonably priced; eliminating the anchor baby loophole and the problem with illegals abusing our system (And yes, there are Mexicans who have never stepped foot in the USA currently on Medicaid and Medicare). And I am missing quite a few still. Our National Nipple is no longer just a national one, but an international one. Isn't it any wonder we won't ever have a surplus anymore? The larger question looms however. If they actually know this will bankrupt our country faster and sooner then later, why are they indeed going forth with it? What is the ulterior agenda and who is behind it? Why not follow common sense approaches with simple things as ID for voting and getting healthcare so that they can verify citizenship? What is the left afraid of with ID laws to protect the sovereignty of the blessed country?
    Posted 10-19-2013 at 09:57 AM by SmashMouth SmashMouth is offline
  15. Old Comment
    WHODATINCA's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 10-2-2013 Shut Down and Loving it.

    @ Oak -- Dude you are funny. Apparently, you aren't finished. Obviously, your sources of information are poor -- which impacts the conclusions you draw.

    "...these are not laws to save lives but more to make the expense of Health Care less while never addressing the true costs associated with that care."

    You and Xan are mistaken about the ACA only attempting to address costs. See the report and testimony before Congress -- where the report finds: "Uninsured individuals experience much more risk to their health than insured individuals. In its 2009 report 'America's Uninsured Crisis: Consequences for Health and Health Care', the Institute of Medicine points to a chasm between the health care needs of people without health insurance and access to effective health care services. This gap results in needless illness, suffering, and even death."

    America's Uninsured Crisis: Consequences for Health and Health Care - Institute of Medicine

    I doubt you will read the report. But, anyway, there it is.
    Posted 10-16-2013 at 02:10 PM by WHODATINCA WHODATINCA is offline
  16. Old Comment
    TheOak's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 10-2-2013 Shut Down and Loving it.

    And impotent rage shows it's face. I said nothing insulting or derogatory, I just informed you I was finished.
    Posted 10-16-2013 at 01:41 PM by TheOak TheOak is offline
  17. Old Comment
    WHODATINCA's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 10-2-2013 Shut Down and Loving it.

    @Oak - Your arguments were incomprehensible and almost entirely without substance. It was difficult to take you seriously. So, it's all good.
    Posted 10-15-2013 at 11:17 PM by WHODATINCA WHODATINCA is offline
  18. Old Comment
    TheOak's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 10-2-2013 Shut Down and Loving it.

    WHODATINCA - I am done answering your questions, i dont have time for games or biased symantics... Simply based on the fact that you asked me if I read the law and Congress voted on this law with out having ample time to read.

    Nancy Pelosi ~ "You have to pass the law to find out what is in it."

    Xan - The 10th Amendment does protect states rights and prevent one State from having to abide by another States laws... The Federal Government sidesteps the 10th by making the law Federal after modeling it after a State in most cases, therefor it actually makes 49 states conform to 1 State's law.. No? Massachusetts in this case.

    As far as for the privileged exclusivity of being American... I was always under the assumption that, that such privilege extended to my Representatives having ample time to vet Bills they vote on before voting. Again.. both parties do covert ops in the middle of the night and people keep voting for them.

    To the best of my knowledge; no Ive not tried to operate a Nuclear Facility. I would prefer however that a dozen more be opened so we can start being able to cleanly charge electric vehicles that are presently being charged with coal powered electricity.

    The exchanges are competition but its a competition where you are forced to make a choice other than "No thank you"... Similar to forcing all Americans to buy a vehicle from an Auto manufacturer that participated in the bailout even if they do not need a vehicle. (Light Bulb) Why don't we force all Americans to do just that and alleviate the public and Government from the costs of Public transportation? You can drive what ever you want as long as it was from a bailout manufacturer and you are driving.... Not necessarily Apples to Oranges if you happen to be a member of a family that has a surgeon and a GP.. They still have to have insurance and are not allowed to opt out of all but emergency room needs.

    This whole discussion is based on the legislation of subjective morality, and that is where it comes to an end for me. As you pointed out, these are not laws to save lives but more to make the expense of Health Care less while never addressing the true costs associated with that care. Furthermore, flooding an already burdened Health Care system is not a pathway to better care, and there is zero in the AFA to address quality.
    Posted 10-14-2013 at 02:29 PM by TheOak TheOak is offline
  19. Old Comment
    WHODATINCA's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 10-2-2013 Shut Down and Loving it.

    "I am objecting to a tax for merely living with no option out other than death."

    I believe that many to most taxes are no-opt out until death.

    "Government interference that creates a list of rules so granular that no one person can possibly know them all."

    Outside of stop signs, most laws qualify here. Have you read the law, at all? Talk about labyrinthine.

    "I am objecting to Government breeding a nation of idiots"
    So how come the conservatives want to cut funding for education and other programs like Head Start?

    "...that no longer read the fine print on anything..."
    Again, the question about education funding...

    "I am objecting to the Government attempting to remove the risk aspect of risk/reward and thus lowering the possible reward."

    Again, stop signs, Homeland Security and the CDC arguably attempt to remove some risk while lowering the possible reward. Guess it depends on which reward you are looking for.

    I wonder how the shutdown is affecting Homeland Security and their contractors. I imagine another terrorist attack while the government is de-funded would enlarge that -22 point deficit (in the polls) the conservatives are experiencing.
    Posted 10-14-2013 at 01:48 PM by WHODATINCA WHODATINCA is offline
  20. Old Comment
    xan's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 10-2-2013 Shut Down and Loving it.

    You were right, I had it backwards. It exempts the 5% of firms over 50 employees from going on the exchanges. But, guess what, still a negligible change, affecting 300,000 people (less than 0.1% of beneficiaries). Firms who currently offer must still do so. It does not prevent those not covered by the exemption to seek coverage on the exchanges. Even Rand said this was a tempest in a dollhouse teapot.

    I was confused with another provision on mandated benefits with ERISA and it's corresponding impact by the ACA. I am certainly not going to argue that this law is complex.

    You can avoid the tax by being poor. In fact, you'll get a subsidy to get insurance. The intent is that these people will now stop using the emergency room (the highest cost point of contact) and use the primary care system (the lowest cost point of contact). We can only hope that will transpire.

    Isn't it a privilege to be an American? I kinda thought it is an exclusive club, where it means something to be a member. That we behave, treat each other respect and exact that last measure of devotion to the ideals. That we enjoy the benefits of equal protection, fairness and obligation to the society in which we live.

    I'm certain that you can't argue that for the 100 million Americans and their families who work hard and play by the rules that the American society exists only to extract from them, not provide any benefit to them. No nation has a population entirely of supreme intellects. Information is not perfect. That life is complicated should not be a shock to anyone, and to expect every citizen to know everything about every idea is unrealistic. The reason why representative governments are formed is to organize and prioritize on a large scale for the benefit of the citizens, not for profiting off them. Protecting the weakest or those who cannot defend themselves is implicit. This is why prohibitions on fraud, theft and murder are the cornerstone of any society. The problem is that as society gets more complicated, the crimes do as well. For many who study it, our healthcare system is a crime, a very sophisticated multilevel marketing crime syndicate. Any governor dedicated to equity would try to fix this.

    Obviously you've never tried to argue a variance from your municipality if you think the healthcare laws are granular...Or get a drug approved, or operate a nuclear facility.

    The exchanges are exactly the definition of competition, and I'm an economist, so I think I can tell competition from uncompetitive situations.

    As to the interstate portion, I agree. However, the States have the right to regulate insurance carriers in their states, and the other states do not have to abide by those regulations. The 10th amendment keeps the Federal government from requiring one state to abide by another state's laws. It is the insurer's obligation to abide by the local laws. The exchanges operate like NASDAQ, where any business in any state can list their products. The Feds can only tax and enforce Fed laws, they can't ask the state to do the Fed's work. If you wanted interstate, you'd have to ask for single payer - like Medicare or Medicaid. And I will stipulate that this is a bit oversimplified.
    Posted 10-14-2013 at 01:32 PM by xan xan is online now

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