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GOP Plans To Destroy Our Safety Net Will Also Kill Democracy

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GOP Plans To Destroy Our Safety Net Will Also Kill Democracy


Reprinted with permission from AlterNet.

Newt Gingrich openly bragged recently at the Heritage Foundation that the Trump administration and Republicans in Congress were going to “break out of the Franklin Delano Roosevelt model.”  That “model,” of course, created what we today refer to as “the middle class.”

Ever since the election of Ronald Reagan, Republicans have been working overtime to kneecap institutions that support the American middle class. And, as any working-class family can tell you, the GOP has had some substantial successes, particularly in shifting both income and political power away from voters and towards billionaires and transnational corporations.

In July of last year, discussing SCOTUS’s 5/4 conservative vote on Citizens United, President Jimmy Carter told me: “It violates the essence of what made America a great country in its political system.  Now it’s just an oligarchy with unlimited political bribery…”  He added: “[W]e’ve just seen a complete subversion of our political system as a payoff to major contributors…”

As Princeton researchers Gilens and Page demonstrated in an exhaustive analysis of the difference between what most Americans want their politicians to do legislatively, versus what American politicians actually do, it’s pretty clear that President Carter was right.

They found that while the legislative priorities of the top 10% of Americans are consistently made into law, things the bottom 90% want are ignored.  In other words, today in America, democracy only “works” for the top 10% of Americans.

For thousands of years, economists and economic observers from Aristotle to Adam Smith to Thomas Picketty have told us that a “middle class” is not a normal by-product of raw, unregulated capitalism – what right-wing ideologues call “the free market.”

Instead, unregulated markets – particularly markets not regulated by significant taxation on predatory incomes – invariably lead to the opposite of a healthy middle class: they produce extremes of inequality, which are as dangerous to democracy as cancer is to a living being.

With so-called “unregulated free markets,” the rich become super-rich, while grinding poverty spreads among working people like a heroin epidemic.  This further polarizes the nation, both economically and politically, which, perversely, further cements the power of the oligarchs.

While there’s a clear moral dimension to this – pointed out by Adam Smith in his classic Theory of Moral Sentiments – there’s also a vital political dimension.

Smith noted, in 1759, that, “All constitutions of government are valued only in proportion as they tend to promote the happiness of those who live under them. This is their sole use and end.”

Jefferson was acutely aware of this: the Declaration of Independence was the first founding document of any nation in the history of the world that explicitly declared “happiness” as a “right” that should be protected and promoted by government.

That was not at all, however, a consideration for the architects of supply-side Reaganomics, although they appropriated JFK’s “rising tide lifts all boats” metaphor to sell their hustle to (boatless) working people.

Far more troubling (and well-known to both Smith and virtually all of our nation’s Founders), however, was Aristotle’s observation that when a nation pursues economic/political activities that destroy its middle class, it will inevitably devolve either into mob rule or oligarchy.  As he noted in The Politics:

“Now in all states there are three elements: one class is very rich, another very poor, and a third in a mean. … But a [government] ought to be composed, as far as possible, of equals and similars; and these are generally the middle classes. …

“Thus it is manifest that the best political community is formed by citizens of the middle class, and that those states are likely to be well-administered in which the middle class is large, and stronger if possible than both the other classes, or at any rate than either singly; for the addition of the middle class turns the scale, and prevents either of the extremes from being dominant.”

This is how America was for the Boomer generation: a 30 year old in the 1970s had a 90 percent chance of having or attaining a higher standard of living than his or her parents.  But, since the 1980s introduction of Reaganomics, there’s been more than a 70 percent drop in “social mobility” – the ability to move from one economic station of life into a better one.

So, if our democratic republic is to return to democracy and what’s left of our middle class is to survive (or even grow), how do we do that?

History shows that the two primary regulators within a capitalist system that provide for the emergence of a middle class are progressive taxation and a healthy social safety net.

As Jefferson noted in a 1785 letter to Madison, “Another means of silently lessening the inequality of property is to exempt all from taxation below a certain point, and to tax the higher portions of property in geometrical progression as they rise.”

Similarly, Thomas Paine, proposing in Agrarian Justice (1797) what we today call Social Security, said that a democracy can only survive when its people “[S]ee before them the certainty of escaping the miseries that under other governments accompany old age…” Such a strong social safety net, Paine argued, “will have an advocate and an ally in the heart of all nations.”

Tragically, Republicans are today planning to destroy both our nation’s progressive taxation system and our social safety net, in obsequious service to their billionaire paymasters.

Flipping Jefferson and FDR on their heads, Republicans are proposing multi-million-dollar tax breaks for the rich, with a few-hundred-dollars bone tossed in for working people.

Meanwhile, Republicans are already hard at work.

As Ian Milhiser notes, “Republicans in the House hope to cut Social Security benefits by 20–50 percent. Speaker Paul Ryan’s plan to voucherize Medicare would drive up out-of-pocket costs for seniors by about 40 percent. Then he’d cut Medicaid by between a third and a half.”

If Newt, Ryan, et al succeed in destroying FDR’s legacy programs, not only will the bottom 90 percent of Americans suffer, but what little democracy we have left in this republic will evaporate, and history suggests it will probably be replaced by a violent, kleptocratic oligarchy.

Hang on tight; the ride could get rough…

Thom Hartmann is an author and nationally syndicated daily talk show host. His newest book is “The Crash of 2016: The Plot to Destroy America — and What We Can Do to Stop It.

IMAGE: Donald Trump meets with Speaker of the House Paul Ryan on Capitol Hill. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts



  1. mike December 22, 2016

    Trump Derangement Syndromes continues.

    1. I Am Helpy December 22, 2016

      Yes you don’t care about democracy or the nation – you’ve already made that clear, KKKomrade.

      1. mike December 22, 2016

        And your an idiot!
        Merry Christmas! ????

        1. I Am Helpy December 22, 2016


        2. I Am Helpy December 22, 2016

          I can’t stop laughing at this. The guy who doesn’t know what “median” means calls me an idiot, and makes a spelling error in the process. Classic. You are so very, very dumb – no wonder Putin managed to trick you into voting for him.

        3. prenestino December 23, 2016

          Didn’t pass grammar class, did you Mike?

          1. iamproteus December 25, 2016

            Don’t be too hard on Mike. He had to choose between grammar class or meeting his buddies out behind the gym to smoke dope and grammar class doesn’t carry the attraction that dope does.

    2. Aaron_of_Portsmouth December 22, 2016

      Mikey, still being a stooge for Trump? Or do you report to Putin? Same on tired and flaccid TDS comment—no signs of intellect or originality, whatsoever. Must be a trance the GOP puts all its followers into, or is there a pledge you sign to check your brain in when your register?

      1. mike December 22, 2016

        Your derangement grows more critical.
        Let’s see in the last 6 years under obama he has lost the House, the Senate, Presidency, 12 state Governorships, 800+ legislative seats. What a record! Hillary and democratic leadership were going to extend his policies and got their butts trounced. How stupid! So now obama’s legacy programs are toast, no judges to fill the Supreme Court. Anti-business regs gone, EO’s and EA’s rescinded.
        Merry Christmas! Have a Happy New Year. ????

        1. Thoughtopsy December 22, 2016

          How are those important Election promises going, pinhead?
          I hear its 2 broken so far, and he’s not even President.

          You must be soooo proud.

          1. mike December 22, 2016

            Has the inauguration happened? Is he president? Do Really know he has done whatever you claim he reneged on. It’s all talk at this point.
            Keep that anger going.
            Can’t wait to see your heads exploded.
            Merry Christmas!

          2. I Am Helpy December 22, 2016

            Hi moron!

            Trump’s businesses are already hiring new workers. Foreign workers, of course – it’s not like he meant anything he said when he conned you slack-jawed rubes.

          3. mike December 22, 2016

            Merry Christmas!

          4. I Am Helpy December 22, 2016

            OK, sorry you got conned into giving up everything just so you could be more racist. It’s because you’re a drooling idiot.

          5. mike December 22, 2016

            Merry Christmas and a very Happ;y New Year.

          6. I Am Helpy December 22, 2016

            See previous post.

          7. dbtheonly December 22, 2016

            Your constant repetition of Merry Christmas calls into question the sincerity of the wish.

          8. I Am Helpy December 22, 2016

            I suspect he thinks it enrages liberals, because he thinks that the billionaires who tell him that there’s a War On Christmas™ are actually telling the truth.

          9. dbtheonly December 23, 2016

            That would explain a lot except how to reconcile the desire to insult with the expression of a wish of peace and joy.

          10. secondclassguy December 22, 2016

            if i asked why you’re saying merry christmas will you lie and say you really mean it? thereby committing two sins

          11. prenestino December 23, 2016

            I think he meant it as irony, as a satiric foreboding. As in: you think this is bad, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet

          12. secondclassguy December 23, 2016

            he’s doing it to mock others, yet i’m sure he would say that he’s a Christian. He’s just the opposite

          13. dbtheonly December 22, 2016

            Trump’s promises aren’t worth the paper they’re printed on. Who knows what he’ll decide to do tomorrow, much less next month, as President, or God help us, years from now.

            The man is the human equivalent on Brownian movement.

          14. prenestino December 23, 2016

            As stupid as they may be, Trumpers couldn’t possibly be stupid enough to think T’s promises had any merit or believability. Surely they saw him for the Con Man he so obviously is. We are thus still trying to figure out why they voted for him. Maybe it’s because they, like Putin, think he would be the best man for the Russian’s interests(??) A U.S.A. with Daffy Duck at the helm! Those who voted for him should know better than to proclaim themselves American Patriots. Ever.

          15. dbtheonly December 23, 2016

            If you remove your assumption that people saw Trump as the con man he is; much falls into place.

            Con men live off of us not seeing behind the curtain.

        2. Aaron_of_Portsmouth December 22, 2016

          Whatever you say, mikey. And Merry Trumpmas to you.

          1. mike December 22, 2016

            All sadly true for your side.
            A-aron, I truly wish you a wonderful Christmas. May the New Year be filled with health and happiness.

          2. Aaron_of_Portsmouth December 22, 2016

            Mike, what part of “Governance isn’t a sporting event” do you not understand?
            And don’t flatter yourself with false greetings.

          3. mike December 22, 2016

            “False greetings”? Actually I was sincere. I just felt you liked to call me Mikey so I wanted to return the favor calling you A-aron.
            Merry Christmas!

          4. Aaron_of_Portsmouth December 22, 2016

            Sincere? Yes, when you only show how partisan your are. But as for sincerity, when you say Merry Christmas, it sounds hollow and perfunctory. Anyone as obsessed with being a partisan fanatic as you has to be treated with caution.

          5. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

            Funny sh^t but many here find it hard to laugh at themselves

          6. mike December 23, 2016

            Methinks you are getting a lump of coal for Christmas.
            Merry Christmas!

          7. Ronald Hester December 23, 2016

            This guy has to be a right winger, it’s his way or the highway, no critical thinking here !

          8. mike December 23, 2016

            Your comment is cracking me up. You realize you Dems have lost house, senate, presidency, governors and state seats under the critical thinking of obama, hillary in last 6 years.
            Now when the Coronation of Hillary?

          9. Ronald Hester December 23, 2016

            You may not be laughing in a few months, Trumps not very good at keeping promises, we will see how this all plays out.

          10. mike December 23, 2016

            We will see but I have a sneaky feeling you are as wrong on this as you believing Hillary would win.
            You too have the Trump Derangement syndrome.

  2. Otto T. Goat December 22, 2016


    1. I Am Helpy December 22, 2016

      OK thanks for letting us know what an actual Nazi traitor thinks. Nobody can see the media in your posts, you senile idiot.

        1. I Am Helpy December 22, 2016

          Sorry your galloping senility has got the better of you once again. Good news, though – you’ll expire of old age soon and your suffering will be over.

      1. Thoughtopsy December 22, 2016

        I can’t even see his posts.
        And it gives me warm fuzzies whenever he posts, precisely because of that. 🙂

        …oh… and because I reply to a reply like this one, occasionally, to ensure he’s reminded that his time is utterly wasted. 😀

        Merry Xmas, Helpy. 🙂

        1. I Am Helpy December 22, 2016

          And to you, too!

        2. Dan S December 23, 2016

          I’ve also blocked the likes of Otto as well as Godzilla who seem to be the most annoying disrupters who just want a reaction

    2. Eleanore Whitaker December 23, 2016

      Hey Goat man..bet you don’t dare go around spouting your BS in public do you? You know you’d get a punch in the mouth from any of our vets or others who are fed up with mouths like yours. You have the right to free speech. You have NO right to abuse that right.

      But do go ahead and spout your BS in public. The sight of you with a fist in your face would be a delight.

  3. Aaron_of_Portsmouth December 22, 2016

    Looks as though the GOP feels super-excited about the prospect of destroying the infrastructure and fabric of society now that Lord Fauntleroy is about to take office.
    This draconian approach to governance will really be painful for the Red Zone states.

    And those medical and food stamp programs, Medicare, Social Security, and other “socialist(?)” benefits? They were conceived and enacted to ease the burden of the lower classes not born with silver spoons, as a response by the British and other western European countries to ease the suffering brought on by the devastating environmental impact of the 1815 eruption of Tambora.

    And now, the good old GOP wants to do away with these safety nets in a Scrooge-like manner worthy of the original Ebenezer before his transformation. All hail to “FISCAL RESPONSIBILITY AND GIVING THE STIFF ARM TO THOSE IN NEED”.

    A festive holiday mood the GOP is in because they’re OK and have no financial worries.

    1. mike December 22, 2016

      Merry Christmas, I hope the nut house has enough meds for your derangement, did I say Trump Derangement Syndrome.

      1. I Am Helpy December 22, 2016

        Who would have thought you were an ableist bigot as well as all the other kinds of bigot.

      2. Aaron_of_Portsmouth December 22, 2016

        Can’t get the slogan out of your head. And “meds” reference is out of style and a crutch nowadays—a sign of a dead-end mind.

        1. Eleanore Whitaker December 23, 2016

          Meds, like the rest of their fantasyland jargon, only proves they are incapable of putting a sane sentence together.

          1. Aaron_of_Portsmouth December 23, 2016

            Yes, that and the tin foil reference are quite boring and meaningless. At first they were amusing but now the expressions have long lost their novelty.

      3. Eleanore Whitaker December 23, 2016

        I thought I told you basement boys to get a job. You really are not too smart. If your GOP gets rid of SS, Medicare and Medicaid, you and your big mouth snot nosed middle aged will have parents who never had what you do…a 401K. Better get a really high paying job moron. Because YOUR parents will lose everything. Stop making like you are Mr. Intelligent. We know you have the brain capacity of a sand flea.

    2. FireBaron December 23, 2016

      I wouldn’t say Lord Fauntleroy. He is more like the Duchess’ baby from Lewis Carrol’s “Through the Looking Glass”.

    3. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

      Where does he say anywhere that SS will be messed with? Relax Aaron, it will be there if and when you need it. Geez….

    4. iamproteus December 25, 2016

      One of the many things about republicans that galls me is their insistence that they are good Christians at the same time that they want to take away the safety nets and “Let ’em die!” if the poor can’t pay for their own healthcare. Have they not read in the scriptures that “the poor will always be with you”? And are we not admonished to help and take care of them? Can they not see that holding one position negates the other?

  4. Godzilla December 22, 2016


    Silly Liberal’s. This article is why ya’ll lost, your f-ing delusional.

    1. I Am Helpy December 22, 2016

      OK, sorry you can’t read and have to make up things that you claim to be correct about. It must be hard, being that insecure, although it doesn’t excuse your electing a Russian puppet.

      1. Eleanore Whitaker December 23, 2016

        All wingers live in fantasy land. None of them make any sense. That’s because only pyschiatrists are trained to make sense of their mental derangement.

    2. Aaron_of_Portsmouth December 22, 2016

      Learn to spell, and turn off the gushing adoration for another man. It is abnormal to fawn over Trump as much as you do—is it puppy love??

      1. FireBaron December 23, 2016

        I’m beginning to think this he is really Steve Bannon, just like I still believe Ag was Rush Limbaugh.

      2. prenestino December 23, 2016

        You should not expect a Trumper to know how to spell

      3. roguerunners December 23, 2016


    3. Eleanore Whitaker December 23, 2016

      Silly Con boy…this pig is not a president. You own everything he does from now own. He steps out of line, you go before the crowds in serious jeopardy. Big talk from big mouths with no substantiation of facts or truth. Just one lie and threat after another.

      Americans do not make idle threats. Remember that when you mouth is superglued shut.

      1. kep December 23, 2016

        And exactly what would YOU know about being an American, Catlady? You’re just another russian troll trying to subvery America

    4. FireBaron December 23, 2016

      Hey, ‘Zilla, here’s something for your unused brain cells to think about. You know all those guys that Teflon Donnie warned you that were out to destroy our country? Well guess who he has been selecting as his cabinet picks? Yep. Those same demons from Goldman-Sachs, etc.
      All of you “low-information voters” and “poorly educated” (Teflon Donnie’s quotes, not mine) have done is not only invite the foxes into the hen house, you have chained up the dogs that are supposed to protect it.

      1. itsfun December 23, 2016

        His picks are all successful people that have been there and done that. Not a group of academic only failures.

        1. Eleanore Whitaker December 23, 2016

          His picks are NOT successful. Money is not a measure of success. ONly greedy people like you eat, sleep, dream and breathe money. YOu are a money hungry fool.

          Being a billionaire doesn’t make Trump smart. He got that money by screwing over his own employees. YOu want the ones here in NJ to prove that to you?

          Only an uneducated moron like you would think Einstein is an academic failure. Trump is not a genius jerk. Geniuses don’t end up with hundreds of bankruptcies and then get NJ to pay off 6 of them. Try again moron.

          1. itsfun December 23, 2016

            I don’t recall mentioning Einstein ever. How many hundreds of bankruptcies does President-elect Trump have? Maybe Trump is smarter than you people in NJ. Trump didn’t pay for substandard work, is that the kind of work you do in NJ. Just curious, how many thousands do you want murdered in the Southern and Midwestern states?

          2. prenestino December 23, 2016

            Your postings, itsfun, do a good job of showing us all that we are correct in just what kind of a person would vote for Mr.T

          3. itsfun December 23, 2016

            You mean deplorable tax paying, working, Americans.

          4. prenestino December 23, 2016

            I see what you mean. All of those who didn’t vote for your man are unemployed and don’t pay taxes, a truly deplorable lot. The reality you live in, where anything can just be made up, must be a lot of fun for you. This is what you are showing us. Of course, the fact that you have deliberately screwed our country in countless ways, at no advantage to yourself whatever makes you almost beyond definition.

          5. itsfun December 23, 2016

            nope you don’t Hillary called half of the President-elect Trump supporters deplorable. That is a whole lot of people. I didn’t call anyone deplorable – Hillary did that. Now please explain just how I screwed our country in countless ways.

          6. prenestino December 23, 2016

            Yes you did – And there is certainly not enough room here to do what you ask. And if you voted for that utter fool of a con-man low life, it wouldn’t do any good to attempt to enlighten you.

          7. itsfun December 23, 2016

            Caught you in your horseshi_t lies and made up stories and you have no idea how to handle it. Next you will try to make someone believe Hillary didn’t call Trump supporters deplorable. You just can’t deal with the fact Hillary got her fat ass kicked.

          8. prenestino December 23, 2016

            Thank you for being what the rest of us think Trumpers are like.
            You’re not exactly a candidate for the Mensa Society, are you?

          9. itsfun December 23, 2016

            Like I care what you think.

          10. roguerunners December 23, 2016

            Reading comprehension…not your strong suit.

      2. prenestino December 23, 2016

        Yes, FireBaron, you are correct. But if you think they didn’t knowingly vote for this, then you are calling them “stupid”

    5. itsfun December 23, 2016

      The middle class has all but disappeared under 8 years of regulations by Obama and the dump ass writer blames Republicans for not wanting so many job killing regulations.

      1. Eleanore Whitaker December 23, 2016

        Hey stupid. The middle class has been gone since Reagan plotted to make his Reaganomics divest the middle class of their incomes. Check your fast moron. It is President Obama who has brought income levels back to where they were before Bush savaged them.

        We will blame Republicans and right wingers like you. You don’t get away with it this time whiners. You love to bully others and then when you are on the receiving end, you pull out your victim cards? Not this time. We plan to stay on your like white on rice. You dished it out. NOW we give it back…day after day…year after year until you get an education and stop living off our taxes.

        1. itsfun December 23, 2016

          The murderous bitch strikes again. Have you talked to your terrorists buddies yet to pick which states you want them to attack so others can feel the agonies of death and murder.

          1. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

            The amount of taxes paid by this man hating c^nt wouldn’t pay my bar bill. Pay no attention to this pos.

          2. charleo1 December 23, 2016

            You mean all the Federal taxes the genius businessman Trump has not paid for the past two decades, because his businesses were unmitigated flops? That guy?

          3. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

            Trump is a man hater? Boy, you do know stuff charleo…..

          4. charleo1 December 23, 2016

            More a self lover Jim. Everyone, and everything comes behind Trump. He thought he wanted to run for President to elevate his brand, but he never expected to win. Now that he has, he likes the attention.. But next will come the work, the intractable, the problems hidden within bigger problems. The frustration, and the awesome 24/7 responsibility of one of the most difficult, and ultimately thankless jobs in the World. That he didn’t sign into.

          5. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

            Come on charleo, I’ve always respected you as an intelligent person but now a mind reader?

          6. charleo1 December 23, 2016

            Watch and learn. Watch and learn…

          7. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

            I beseech you to do the same my friend…lol Much will be learned under the new boss

          8. leonardo311 December 23, 2016

            Jim, I bet you wouldn’t buy a used car without at least a look under the hood, but you cast a vote for the most powerful position in the world, for a man that refuses us a look “under the hood”.

          9. roguerunners December 23, 2016

            Flagged. Just not OK.

          10. itsfun December 23, 2016

            You are right about her, just her wanting thousands to die gets to places in me, I haven’t been to in a long time. She made other posts wanting people to feel the same terrible things the folks on 9/11 felt.

            This is one of her posts to me about terrorism:

            Eleanore Whitaker itsfun • 7 hours ago
            How do you know she wasn’t only there to sell her flea bitten shoes to the Japanese. Don’t do you stupid?
            Boy I can’t wait for the next terrorist attack. This time I hope it is YOUR states. Who needs morons in red states to steal our hard earned tax dollars to hand it to a billionaire. By the way, moron…you are now paying all of the additional security your swaggering, strutting, jerk is getting at Trump Tower.
            One wonders who Big Mouth is managing to have to tolerate Carlos Gomez, NYPD’s Chief of Police. Who said and I quote…all additional costs for Trump Tower security WILL be paid for by the federal government. Eat it and chew long and hard on that one moron.

          11. prenestino December 23, 2016

            Thank you for living up to what we expect from Trumpers

          12. leonardo311 December 23, 2016

            Easy on the language. The forum is to exchange ideas, if you disagree with Eleanor’s comment refute it with provable “facts and figures”.
            Leave the name calling on the playground, it does nothing for your credibility, you are not the Donald.

          13. itsfun December 23, 2016

            check out the names she calls me and then complain about me.

          14. leonardo311 December 23, 2016

            Ok, I saw where she called you “stupid” . . . But first two wrongs don’t make a right, and second there is a huuuuge difference between “stupid” and “murderous ***ch”.

          15. itsfun December 23, 2016

            What would you call someone that wished a terrorist attack on your state so thousands of innocent men, women and children can be murdered. She posted that and said she wanted people in the southern and miswest states to feel the human remains and ashes falling on their heads. Would you call that murderous or just making conversation?

      2. Zengo December 23, 2016

        its not the regulations, it was the transfer of wealth to the one percent under “voodoo” economics, starting with Reagan. Regulations tend to be life saving, not job killing

        1. itsfun December 23, 2016

          Now we are adding Reagan to the list of problem causers. Now we have racist, bigots, sexists, haters, George Bush and Ronald Reagan for the failures of Obama.

          1. Zengo December 23, 2016

            it’s kind of hard to have discussions with someone who disavows history

          2. prenestino December 23, 2016

            Good for you to realize this. I gave up on trying to do this long ago. You can’t have honest discussions with those who disavow reason and facts, and who will just make up any argument, no matter how absurd, to “prove” their point.

          3. Zengo December 23, 2016

            Yeah, I try to give some of these guys the benefit of the doubt before blocking them, but in pretty much every case it’s the same

      3. prenestino December 23, 2016

        This takes the prize for the most delusional posting of the day

      4. charleo1 December 23, 2016

        Go try and sell that anti-regulation message in Flint Michigan will ya?

        1. itsfun December 23, 2016

          Your doing apples and oranges. State employees and city employees didn’t do their jobs at all. They ignored laws

          1. leonardo311 December 23, 2016

            Sorry, the employees followed the law, it was the law and those to wrote and passed the law that are responsible for Flint’s water.
            The “Emergency Manager” law passed by the Republican controlled legislator at the behest of the Republican Governor, who then appointed a (singular) Manager to oversee Flint opposed to the democratically elected mayor and council. Ordered the change in he water source, the “rank and file” employees merely did what they were told, several managers are pending criminal charges along with the Governor’s appointee. Why stop there, shouldn’t we expect those that started the whole mess with this ill advised law all be held responsible?

          2. itsfun December 24, 2016

            The “managers” facing criminal charges are State Employees! The emergency manager is also being paid by the State. Governor Snyder should be facing charges, but he will get away with his BS. He thinks he is a dictator and has been allowed to get away with his shi_. The Emergency Manager law he uses to appoint a manager was defeated in a general election. Because he has a Republican controlled House and Senate, he got the lame ducks and enough newly elected people to pass the same law that was defeated. He changed a few words in the law and got it passed. Snyder is a disgrace to the Democratic system and should have been removed from office and probably should face charges in the Flint water disaster.

          3. charleo1 December 24, 2016

            So eliminate the laws to keep ’em honest? I believe that was the thinking that allowed Wall Street to nearly destroyed the economy.
            And then who went to jail for breaking laws that no longer existed?
            Apples, oranges, oranges, apples. Never a good thing to regulate either of them, is the way the meme goes. But who pays? You do.
            Smart? I don’t see how.

          4. itsfun December 24, 2016

            Charlie: Show me where I said to ignore or eliminate the law? Those that did that are being charged by the State Attorney General. The only two people I have ever head say they can pick and choose which laws they will enforce are Holder and Obama.

          5. charleo1 December 25, 2016

            I think your point was over regulation had contributed to the problems of the middle class. It’s not true. But the Right makes a religion out of it. And the examples are all over the place where people, and the Country itself has been harmed because of their zeal to deregulate everything to please the big money industrialists, and Wall Street bankers they’re in bed with. It’s paid for policy, and it’s sickening really. But still they continue on, regulations, and taxes. Yammering on about how theses two are the reason for all the Nation’s ills. Again, not true. Deregulation, as we’ve seen, doesn’t help. In fact, it isn’t supposed to help the people. But is strictly designed to have the gov, look the other way in order to help pump bigger profits to the big corporations bottomline. And we all pay for that in the end, especially the Middle Class.

          6. itsfun December 25, 2016

            I believe if companies are allowed to grow, then they create jobs. When regulations cause companies to raise their prices, who do you think pays for those costly regulations? Its not the companies. its the consumer. Its the same result with high corporate taxes. We the consumer pay for those high taxes with price increases. How does that help the middle class or what is left of it?

          7. charleo1 December 26, 2016

            Look, regulations are complicated, and the elimination of them should not be treated as a cure all religion. It’s irresponsible. For example, do you want to save a couple of bucks on your family’s night out by eliminating regulations on kitchen inspection? On the safety of the products we bring into our home? How about the tires on your car, or the aspirin, or cold medicine we give to our kids? Do we want those products regulated? Or, would we rather the price be a little lower?
            I think we want a Party in there looking out for us. Don’t you?
            As to corporate taxes, they’ve never been lower, and corporate take to the bank profits never higher. By that we should have millions of jobs being created, and better wages too. But we’re not seeing those profits, and savings on historically low tax rates translate into more, and higher paying jobs, or passed on to consumers. And assuming the tax bill is simply passed on to consumers, ignores the fact these are taxes on profits from sales. So the theory ignores market competition that would be in play for those sales. And it also ignores the fundamental basis for business growth. Why companies. grow is not based on the extra cash they have on hand. But the increase in business that requires it.
            Plus, as a Country we have obligations, and commitments. Bills are created, and taxes must be levied. Who should pay that 20 trillion dollar, and growing bill? The poor are poor, the rich, and corporations exempt. So who’s left? The struggling Middle Class? It’s a fair consideration.

          8. itsfun December 26, 2016

            Who ever said get rid of all regulations? Who pays the bills and who should pay the bills are two different things. Corporations do pass cost increases to the consumers. If they didn’t we would still be paying a dime for a loaf of bread. They take care of their stockholders. No stockholders, no corporation. One of the reasons the economy is not growing as it should is the unnecessary regulations Obama has imposed on the corporations. They have cash on hand, but will not spend it because they never know how many more government revenue regulations Obama will make them pay. Therefore they don’t hire people. They don’t create full time jobs because of the ACA. I have personally seen that happen in a corporation that is in at least 7 Midwest states. They ordered their managers not to hire anyone for over a 29 hour work week. Minimum wage laws plus a 3000 – 4000 health care policy makes it to costly to hire full time employees. I am not against a minimum wage, but when a company doesn’t know what the wage will be, they can’t make budgets.

          9. charleo1 December 26, 2016

            You’re obviously brainwashed, as you mindlessly keep repeating the mantra. It becomes not so much a discussion on economics, but a non specific partisan, and political basic and forth.

          10. itsfun December 26, 2016

            yep, when someone disagrees with you they are brainwashed.

          11. charleo1 December 26, 2016

            When you refuse to discuss the true economics of taxes, and regulations. But insist in turning the conversation into a fact free partisan blame game. Yep! That’s brainwashed.

          12. charleo1 December 26, 2016

            That’s their sob story, always trotted out there without a single specific regulation ever being pointed to. The merits versus the “unbearable Nazi-like, job killing tyranny!” It’s corporate propaganda with a purpose. Hey! You do know they pay people really good money to make this stuff up? So am I to believe this is the deal in America for the millions of service sector workers? You can have a full time, low pay job, as long as your only access to healthcare is thru the emergency room. Or you can have a regular doctor with Medicaid. But not both. And that’s good enough for Americans, because we can do no better. Because we accept their little self serving stories, as we gaze at their record breaking profits…. Not acceptable to me.

      5. leonardo311 December 23, 2016

        Name some of these “job killing regulations” . . . I recall Mitch and friends claiming “Obamacare would kill jobs” but the unemployment rate went from over 9% to under 5% . . .

        Regulations don’t kill jobs. Typically regulations are written to supplement legislation, already on the “books” it is just that some “poor down trodden business owner” has found a hole in the current law, the regulation merely plugs that hole needs.

        1. itsfun December 23, 2016

          Regulations are written as a way to make revenue. How is the coal industry doing. How many full time jobs did Obamacare turn into part time jobs. What is the real unemployment number. When people give up on trying to find a job, Obama takes them off the unemployment rolls.

          1. leonardo311 December 23, 2016

            First, Only Congress is empowered to raise revenues, not regulators i.e. “bureaucrats”, as I said before regulations are employed to fill gaps in a law, if Congress believes the regulators have overstepped or have alter the “original intent” then they re-write the law.
            The coal industry or more correctly the demise of the coal industry, is due primarily to fracking, which has made oil and natural gas much less expensive than coal, and cleaner too. Sure fracking has its downside too, but these are all localized, compared to the global damage done from burning coal. While the coal industry and therefore the miners have suffered, the vast majority of us (more than 99%) are reaping the benefits of cheaper gasoline and natural gas price than they were 8 years ago. Isn’t this what a leader is suppose to do? Make decisions that benefit the vast majority of his constituents?
            Yes when people choose to not seek employment they are removed from the roles, but this has been true since Obama was in diapers. NO, Obamacare didn’t turn full time jobs into part time jobs, this was a choice of the employers. With our current tax structure, the employers have determined that it is more advantageous for them to pocket the money and pay the tax than it is to provide their employee with insurance, and take the write off. Remember the slogan from the Romney campaign 4 years ago “government doesn’t create jobs” thus if true, how can the opposite be true?

          2. itsfun December 23, 2016

            Government does kill jobs though. needless regulations mean higher costs to everyone. Leaders don’t draw red lines, then back off. Leaders don’t lie to citizens to get his pet projects passed. Leaders don’t jump to conclusions every time a police officer has to shot someone in the line of duty. Calling Obama a leader is a insult to the word leader.

          3. leonardo311 December 23, 2016

            So You are saying Romney’s slogan was BS? “Needless” regulations, no such thing, there may be some that are out dated, but at the time they were written, they were needed because someone had taken an unfair advantage of the law, again trying to serve the majority.

            You must really look at a regulator like a referee in a football game. On the field of life, you are like the local high school team, on the field with the New England Patriots on the other end. You face a sever disadvantage, due to size and experience, but without regulators, Imagine how much chance you would have if all the officials were wearing Patriot jerseys.

          4. itsfun December 24, 2016

            Isn’t it a shame that real life is not a football game. How many regulations are made to help a political group or political donator?

    6. prenestino December 23, 2016

      Didn’t do well in grammar class, did you Godzilla?

  5. Eleanore Whitaker December 23, 2016

    Actually, the best thing that could happen to Dem states is for our AGs to sue the Federal Government for all of the monies paid into SS, Medicare and Medicaid and return it to our states. Here’s why. The Republican states are the ones with the highest number on phony claims for SSDI. They’d have to pay for it as a Republican conglomerate out of THEIR, not our state taxes. And yes. States can sue the federal government and have on several occasions. Such as the current racial gerrymandering case before the Supreme Court in which VA tried to redistrict maps to remove the number of minority voters. This kind of redistricting and racial gerrymandering ONLY occurs in southern and midwestern states. What does that tell you? You never see NY, NJ, MA, VT, NH or RI duking it out to preserve traditional voting redistricting that knowingly denies minorities their right to vote. That happens ONLY in Republican bigot states.

    As for these safety nets, the Republicans are not thinking too straight. Already the Pacific Coast states are considering secession. The northeastern states won’t be far behind. We have nothing to lose by leaving a too Republican dominated government. Just as they deny minorities their right to vote, they are now denying the Democratic Minority their voice by overruling everything the Dems try to do. Who needs it?

    This is a Neo Revolutionary War fought to avoid a Trump Monarchy and Dynasty. The very things the Republicans all accused Hillary of, now Trump has appointed 3 Goldman Sachs bankers, several Big Oil boys from the polluter states and the GOP thinks we must just stand back and let them use OUR tax dollars as they please.

    Stay in tough with your state AGs. When NY’s AG Eric Schneidermann went after Trump, he FORCED Trump to pay a $25 million claim for that bogus Trump University that took $35,000 from every one who thought is was an accredited college. It wasn’t. Trump lied and Schneidermann is now planning to make sure anything Trump pulls off in NY goes to court. Fun, isn’t it? Remember the 3 threats the Republicans made to sue President Obama? What goes around comes around.

    1. Ronald Hester December 23, 2016

      Eleanore, think you going about this the right way. If you name Call ,before you state your position, the person will shut down eamediatly, and you go nowhere with them.if you confront them with a little respect, then hit them with facts you can back up, then and only then, do have any chance to get thru to them. I think there are a lot of right wingers, that are as scared as we are, but they have boxed themselves in, so now are trying to defend themselves. Just my thought, but approx 1/2 the nation didn’t vote, less than 25% voted, republican, more folks voted for HR, by popular vote, that’s a fact. Never the less, Trump won the electorial, but did not win a mandate. If you think about this, we don’t have to turn many of them around to, pull the rug out from under the repubs! Let’s hit them with facts, that can be backed up, ask them to do critical thinking to support there positions! Truth, honesty, and repect, is our best weapon to get out of the mess we are in. Let’s try and turn these folks around, and get them on our side, instead of having all out war, that nobody wins!

      1. Elliot J. Stamler December 23, 2016

        I regret to tell you (read my comment in this column) that the train has left the station with reference to any chance of success through the methods and modalities you propose. THOSE FOLKS, THE STRONG TRUMPERS CAN NOT BE TURNED AROUND. They are impervious to reason. The marginal Trumpers might be turned around but probably only by Trump’s own disastrous performance in office and the consequences thereof.
        The hardcore Breitbart types cannot be turned around and can be cured of their venom and hatred and nazism only by massive defeat despite all they can do…or by a bullet between the eyes. And before you gasp, please understand that from their point of view, before they give up power, you and I will get a bullet between the eyes. Yes, Ronald, it has come to this.

  6. rednekokie December 23, 2016

    Seems to me that most republicans have totally forgotten Hoover and his congress, as well as Reagan and his congress. History repeats itself far more quickly than we remember — and now we will have Trump and his congress. It will not be any different than then two before him — except that, this time, the fall will be total.
    I really regret that, but if that’s what it takes to get rid of the oligarchists, then bring it on.

    1. leonardo311 December 23, 2016

      I too thought it was a little ironic when Speaker Ryan boosted about having the “the largest majority in Congress with a Republican President since 1928”. Of course all of those cheering him on, obviously didn’t recall the culmination of a decade of Republicans in the White House and a majority in Congress brought forth.

      Reagan was I little different, because Dems held majorities in Congress, but in those days there was something called “compromise”, Congress allowed the President to put forth an agenda for the Nation he was elected to lead, Congress’ job in those days was to attempt to temper this agenda with their values, in an effort to give the President what he wanted without “selling out” their constituents.

    2. charleo1 December 23, 2016

      Oligarchs are now global grazers. They will simply move on to the giant expanding markets of China, and the greater third World. In fact they are doing so as we speak. Where in that corporate Utopian playground, they write the rules, democracy remains the dream of the hopeless idealists, And things like worker Rights, unemployment insurance, Social Security, Medicare, and those pesky profit siphoning environmental regulations do not exist. Can we see the bottom yet? Not all of us, as is evident in the President we have just elected.

  7. itsfun December 23, 2016

    If anything the writer says is right, why has the middle class almost disappeared under 8 years of Obama and his regulations?

    1. Eleanore Whitaker December 23, 2016

      The Middle Class didn’t disappear under Obama. It disappeared under Reagan. If the writer is right, you are wrong and a big baby who can never admit when you post an opinion you have NO substantiation for.

      You want to explain why every Republican President except Eisenhower had a recession to their reputations? The only reason GHWB only had on in his first term was because that was his ONLY term. The rest ALL had recessions in their 2nd terms.

      Who got us into 2 simultaneous wars on a credit card? Who ended his 8th year as president with a massive financial meltdown. Where the hell were you when these Republicans were making the 1% 11% richer with every tax cut?

      Now, your boy Trump claims he will give the 1% an $8 TRILLION tax cut. Enjoy yourself…you’ll be living in a gutter.

      1. prenestino December 23, 2016

        You are correct, but you are telling them what they already know. They voted for Trump so that this would happen, even though they would not be beneficiaries of his policies. Why would they do this? They won’t say.

        1. leonardo311 December 23, 2016

          Because the Cheeto lied to them, plain and simple, and they are just to proud to admit, that they were conned.

          As this all unfolds, and I predict it will just as the author has put forth, The Democrats should fight this as hard as they are able. But when the Republicans move to moving a majority of Federal programs to the States from Highway funds to welfare. The Democrats should just sit back and let it happen, as most of Red States are currently the “taker” State where as the “Commie, Socialist . . . Blue” State are the “giver” State. This move will hurt red state and be a boom to Blue States, thus the fence sitter and some not too proud Red/Orange voters will see the light and realize they have been had.

        2. Jmz Nesky December 23, 2016

          They did this because they interpreted the orange pumpin’s words as only applying to (1) his enemies and (2) the liberals/democrats.. They actually believe that what ever he does they will be exempt from harm simply because they voted for him.. In short, their still patiently waiting in line for that trickle down effect and he’s convinced them that he’s the one savior who can give it to them and they fell for it like fried ice cream. Fact is we’re all going down, there’s no dout about it.. All of us and the only blessing that will derive from it is that all those who voted for him and the majority congress who chose an extreme partisan conservative for SCOTUS will include them in the destruction and when they come to their senses and try to explain their former insanty every one who didn’t vote for the monster and his cut throat henchmen will fail to lend an ear.. That will be the final get back on these idiots, for once the liberal communty will NOT express sympathies nor help these degenerates gain any sense of respect.. They will feel like outcasts within the crowd.

          1. charleo1 December 23, 2016

            In other words, a bunch of dumb turkeys voting for Christmas.

          2. Jmz Nesky December 23, 2016

            Indeed, otherwise why would normal. average citizens vote for some one they knew was dangerous to others but not to them? Someone who would take away every entitlement that the moochers have enjoyed at least for the last eight years yet exempt them from this usurption.. They bellieve the orange popcicle will share the spoils with them but in reallity he sees them in the same light that they see us.. No different and when they reallize this there will be no one who will feel sympathy for them.. No one, at least in my family.

      2. Elliot J. Stamler December 23, 2016

        No, I don’t think, Eleanor, that the middle class has at all disappeared. I do think it is and has been under ever increasing economic pressure which will accentuate under Trump. I am a member of the middle class and in fact have enormously prospered under Obama who saved the national economy and whose very deficient personality and psyche inhibited him from loudly, vigorously, even aggressively taking the full credit for it he deserves.
        Eventually the Republican economic policies will backfire as we would agree and they’ll be toast. EXCEPT they are systematically destroying political democracy in this country so as to prevent by democratic procedures their ever being defeated and removed from office. One has only to look at what they do in N.C., Texas and other areas where they currently have control. So, if you read my quite pessimistic comment in this column, we are in for bad…and possibly very violent times. Assuming of course Trump doesn’t blunder us into WWIII in which case most of us won’t have any further worries about anything.

    2. charleo1 December 23, 2016

      Because it hasn’t almost disappeared is the short answer. What has happened, what had the momentum, due to the bought and pay for laws that empowered the rich investor class that has harmed the great consumer class, has been been slowed under Obama, and the two very short years of a Democratically controlled Congress. In which way too much time had to be expended cleaning up the mess of the prior Republican Adm, and the last 12 years Republicans Congress that preceded them. Is the longer answer.

    3. pisces63 December 23, 2016

      The worse part about what you write. Donald Trump has admitted the economy never grows under republicans. That is does better under democrats and always has. Look it up. His words, which surprised me. so that means this great economic roll we are on regardless of what the drug addicts whine against, will be short lived.

      1. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

        We are on no economic roll the media would like you to believe! You will see what one is however under a Trump administration.

        1. pisces63 December 23, 2016

          Yes, we are and have been for a while. Just because someone cannot mine coal does not mean the economy isn’t thriving. We have thousands of jobs waiting to be filled here, in Ohio with no qualified personnel to fill them. Or, they cannot pass drug tests or background tests. The jobs are plentiful here. The QUALIFIED, NOT SO. I am 67 and been on my job 30 years and if I wanted to could qualify for a lot of those jobs. These are tech jobs. Why aren’t they trying to get educated and get one. They want a hand out. Gimme back my mine!!! It will not rebound nor thrive. IF there is no need for it which is the main cause of mine closings, the failure of the fuel industry including oil, he cannot make it so by the touch of his yeller hair. My whole family have good jobs, those still working. some are retired, now. A few hold more than one job but this African American family has not been without during this time at all but then, again, we are not coal miners.

          1. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

            Handouts will not be part of a Trump administration so those folks will go the way of the covered wagon. You may be surprised at what old yeller hair can get done in 8 short years. Let’s just see….

          2. pisces63 December 23, 2016

            What hand outs. the right whiners want hand outs. Instead of taking this time to learn another trade as manufacturing workers who were displaced starting in the 70’s, they got drunk, beat their wives and moped the black man had more than they, used drugs. He will not get anything done. sorry. In fact if wanting an outmoded jet for our arsenal because it is cheaper than the more advanced newer system is your idea of job creation which could cost thousands of jobs if he prevails. Keep it. Lockheed vs Boeing.

          3. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

            Your “right whiners” will get no hand outs either.

            He’s shopping for the best value for our money and that’s a problem why?

          4. pisces63 December 23, 2016

            Okay, let me break it down for you. Is the best value for your dollars Model T or a 2016 SUV? That is my understanding. the one he wants is out dated and cheaper. YEARS out dated. The costlier one is newer and updated. Best value for who’s money? I do not shop $1 store if I cans get the same thing for less at Macy’s!!

          5. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

            I don’t think an F-18 Super Hornet is comparable to a Model T. It is however comparable to an F-35 which, in his opinion, is overpriced. It’s a wonderful negotiating ploy imo. Competition is what we’re all about ma’am! We’ll end up with the best, whichever that is, and for a price considerably less than asked for saving you, me and the American taxpayer millions. Is that so bad?

          6. pisces63 December 23, 2016

            Of course coming from you, it makes good sense. Even I see that but even I know prices do not remain the same. If a better deal is brokered, fine. I just do not trust him to broker that deal. I start to wonder what’s in it for him.

          7. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

            You’re just used to the old way government did business. They ALL got a piece! No more. Contrary to what you’ve been told, I believe Trump is an honest man who will do his best for America.

          8. pisces63 December 23, 2016

            I do not believe he is honest. If he were, he would not have bilked mom and pop companies of millions in non payment for materials he contracted and caused their bankruptcies. He would not have destroyed the Board Walk. He would not try not to pay taxes on his newest Hotel like the rest. He would not have had to pay out millions for trump U. HONEST!!! In who’s dream world. This isn’t the media but the book and watching him for over 30 years. You cannot make a silk purse from a boar’s ear. the proof is there and you question ME??

          9. pisces63 December 23, 2016

            AAAANNNNDDD I remember a Naval installation we spent so much on had to be rebuilt because it was not correct. There are true military spending horror stories out there. Anytime anyone wanted to cut, it was political suicide.

          10. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

            The graft and corruption has been rampant in Washington and LOCAL government for years. We are the most taxed nation in the world and have been getting ripped off in an unprecedented way for years.

          11. dtgraham December 23, 2016

            “The most taxed nation in the world.”

            When this claim was looked at in the past, the U.S. was compared to the 33 other industrialized nations in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

            Data from 2014, the most recent year available, shows that the United States wasn’t the most highly taxed by the typical metrics and actually places near the bottom of OECD countries (individual taxation) or around the middle of the pack (corporate taxation). The U.S. places 31 out of 34 OECD countries for tax revenue as a percentage of GDP (26%). It places 17th for corporate tax revenue as a percentage of GDP (2.6%). The United States does have one of the highest top marginal corporate tax rates in the world. However, companies pay far less in practice because they can take deductions and exclusions not available elsewhere. U.S. companies pay a real tax rate on net profit of about 13% on average. — Politifact.

            When discussing public policy, you have to know what you’re talking about. You’ll get almost no true facts from Trump. He’s a pathological liar and you can’t rely on him.

          12. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

            Yeah, yeah, yeah….when one takes into account the taxes paid on everything from gasoline to cigarettes from sales tax to hospitality taxes we are the most taxed nation on earth.

          13. dtgraham December 24, 2016

            There’s no American version of the European VAT or Canadian GST on purchases, just for starters. There’s no state sales taxes of 8% in America. Where are you getting this from? You have to source it.

            PS — From something reliable. Not Alex Jones.


          14. Jim Samaras December 24, 2016

            My point was we’re taxed very heavily on everything we do in addition to income and sales taxes. Of course it depends on where you live and how much spendable income you have.


          15. dtgraham December 24, 2016

            Wrong. Your point was that, “we are the most taxed nation on earth.” That’s so far off it’s laughable. Among wealthier nations, the U.S. is right near the bottom for tax revenues per capita.

            Regarding your goodcitizen link, you’ve got to be kidding me. It’s just the names of various taxes and a nostalgic pining for 100 years ago when things were wonderful. Let me tell you a few things about 100 years ago.

            Factory employees, such as cigarette rollers, worked as many as 65 hours per week in 1915. Employees of U.S. Steel worked 7 days a week until after the crusading first vice-president, W. B. Dickson, had threatened to resign and take the fight outside the corporation in 1911. Hours were very long for scant pay.

            There were 23,000 industrial deaths in 1913 among a workforce of 38 million, equivalent to a rate of 61 deaths per 100,000 workers today. In contrast, the most recent data on overall occupational fatalities show a rate of 3.3 deaths per 100,000 workers. Regarding on-the-job safety, there were virtually no regulations, no insurance, and no company fear of a lawsuit when someone was injured or killed due to being forced to work in dangerous conditions.

            According to a U.S. News and World Reports article comparing income in 1915 and 2015, “back in 1915 . . . you were doing about average if you were making $687 a year, according to the Census. That is, if you were a man. If you were a woman, cut that number by about half.” In terms of 2015 dollars, the average pay of $687 for men is equal to $16,063, which is far below today’s median annual income. Would you like to adjust the 1915 prices of everything up to 2015 levels and then try to live on $16,063 dollars a year (or about $8,000 for a woman)? No? I wouldn’t either.

            Life was a hellhole before the progressive reform era. Your party is trying to bring the “good old days” back.

          16. Jim Samaras December 24, 2016

            Well you may have to provide a link that shows we’re at or even near the bottom but when all those other “after tax” taxes are factored in I’m sure you will be hard pressed to do so. Those “various taxes” you so flippantly disregard are a reality in TODAYS world and was not meant as propaganda for nostalgia when I referenced it.

          17. dtgraham December 24, 2016


            You could have looked that up in 2 seconds. There were a number of others. It says, “total tax revenue”. In other words, it’s all factored in…right?

            Your goodcitizen link sure propagandizes how wonderful life was 100 years ago for nostalgia purposes. Read the very bottom of it.

            Incidentally, among the very few OECD countries who have a lower total tax take as a percentage of GDP than the U.S., I wouldn’t classify them all as wealthy nations. Now, where are your links showing the U.S. to be, “the most taxed nation on earth.” I can’t read what you pull out of your a$$.

          18. Jim Samaras December 24, 2016

            Show me a site that puts these taxes into a percentage of average income smart guy


          19. dtgraham December 25, 2016


            What next? As a percentage of shoelaces in the country? You know how to deflect.

            The Tax Foundation is a right-wing think tank dedicated to making taxes appear higher than they are, and even they show the U.S. worker tax burden as being less than the OECD average.

            The methodological errors the Tax Foundation commits on purpose all distort its figures in the same direction — they all make taxes look higher than they actually are. The tax burdens that the Tax Foundation says the average family bears are much higher than the estimates of the Congressional Budget Office and the Congressional Joint Committee on Taxation. Yet, even they have to admit that the U.S. is not, “the most taxed nation on earth.”

            Now, you show me a site which says that it is.

          20. Jim Samaras December 25, 2016

            Do I write funny? I see nothing in there except income and payroll taxes! What about fuel taxes they pay when buying gas? What about the cigarette tax if they smoke? Property taxes, taxes on their phone bills, etc.?

            I’d love to see a site that breaks the percentage down including those that the average wage earner pays.

          21. dtgraham December 26, 2016

            “Show me a site that puts these taxes into a percentage of average income smart guy.”


            As you asked for. As a percentage of average income. As pointed out earlier, total taxes take into account the nickel and dime dog licence fees and business licence fees and driver’s license fees and court fines and cigarette taxes and phone bill taxes that you seem to be hung up on. All wealthy industrialized nations nick their citizens with these things. You think the U.S. is alone in that? Insofar as total taxes on individuals, the U.S. ranks 31 out of 34 OECD nations. Only 3 of those countries tax their citizens more.

            Now, show me a site which has the U.S as, “the most taxed nation on earth.”

          22. Jim Samaras December 26, 2016

            Page not found doesn’t help prove your point. You call these nickel and dime taxes? Of those mentioned were property taxes. I payed 30K last year. Yours? What percentage of your AFTER tax income did your property tax eat up? Add up gasoline taxes, property and other Egregious taxes we pay and I’m guessing over 40%

          23. dtgraham December 27, 2016

            The U.S. is not alone in having higher property taxes. Many countries do. What matters is the total taxes paid, for the purposes of this discussion (“the most taxed nation on earth”). It also doesn’t matter what any one individual paid in property taxes.

            In relative terms, property taxes have a share exceeding 10% of total tax revenue – in five countries of the OECD (Australia, Canada, Korea, the United Kingdom and the United States). As a share of the economy, many of those countries have a higher property tax rate than the United states. The U.S. takes in 2.744% of it’s GDP as property taxes. Here are other percentages: Belgium 3.16, Canada 3.767, Israel 3.097, Luxembourg 3.289, France and the UK 4.065 each, etc…


            Look man, I’m pretty much through with this. This isn’t a debate or discussion so much as a fruitless teaching exercise. You’re not credible. You won’t try and prove anything. You show me nothing except a list with the names of various taxes on it, and now one anecdotal example. You won’t accept clear evidence and proof that the United States is obviously not the most taxed nation on earth. You do nothing on your part, yet nothing is ever enough on my part. Like Trump, just whatever pops into your head, or out of your ass, is somehow a good comeback. Screw facts.

          24. dtgraham December 27, 2016

            The first Tax Foundation link that I posted takes you there. The second one doesn’t. I don’t know why. Click on the earlier one that I posted, since you’re apparently incapable of looking anything up yourself.

        2. Sand_Cat December 27, 2016

          Either that, or we’ll see what a sucker you’ve been. But we already know that.

        3. Thoughtopsy December 28, 2016

          You are f**king delusional.
          Apparently you can’t read basic economic indicators.
          I guess that’s not a surprise.

      2. itsfun December 23, 2016

        If you believe a growth of 1,2 or 3 percent is on a economic roll, you have a different idea than any financial advisor in the world.

    4. Ronald Hester December 24, 2016

      Could it be he was trying to put the country back together, after Bush destroyed it, with his taxation and deregulation? And where were the repubs? They hated he black man so bad, that they put themselves , and their hate, ahead of thir country ! That’s a fact that they openly admit! Gee, wonder where we would be now, had they worked for all americans, instead of digging their heels in, blocking anything that might make things better, then blaming Obama ! Or the American people, for not working hard enough! Shame on them ! Shame on those that think lying is ok, if it gets you what you want ! Shame on you, for showing our youth that lying, dishonesty , racism, disrepect, all ok, if it gets you a win ! Also stop the B’S about helping the poor, it’s a small fraction of our taxes compared to the whole pie ! If you Trumpets are real christians, the start acting like one !

      1. itsfun December 24, 2016

        nope Obama was not trying to put my country back together, it wasn’t broken. If you love high taxes and job killing regulations its up to you. It is typical of someone on the left to whine racism like you are. The Republicans said they would work to make Obama a one term President. Every political party works to make the other side a one term President. Look at the left already with President-elect Trump. They have tried recounts, blaming Russia and Warren even wants to impeach him before he even takes office. I can’t believe you are concerned about lying after 8 years of Obama’s lies and the huge amount of lies Hillary has told. You don’t get to decide what a true Christian is and you don’t get to make me stop wanting people to earn what they get. Not going to happen.

        1. Sand_Cat December 27, 2016

          Yeah, it wasn’t broken. Just losing 800,000+ jobs per month and sliding into economic disaster. “Your” country is clearly the 1% and the middle- and working-class idiots – are you one?- who subscribe to their lies.
          Why doesn’t anyone “get to decide what a true Christian is”? You have consistently defended those who claim to be Christians and have allocated that right to themselves.
          Your lies about Hillary and Obama’s “lies” – the two of them put together probably haven’t told as many untruths in their entire lives as Trump did just in this campaign – follow the same dishonest track you always pursue. When asked to name specific “lies,” you always bring up statements that vie with one another for triviality. George Bush’s lies got hundreds of thousands killed and unleashed the insanity currently playing out in the Middle East, and Trump’s promise to follow the same model, i.e., harming thousands of the already underprivileged and desperate.

  8. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

    This writer needs to look at the Constitution again and reread it! It explicitly” says every American has the right to the “pursuit of happiness” not that the government shall provide it.

    When will people understand that the “middle class” is an aberration created after WWII in America after the rest of the world was destroyed and it was up to us with our great industrial might to rebuild it! After the 70’s the world caught up and we’re now back to “normal” where there are haves and have nots in the world and the strong and smart will survive. The ne’er do wells will continue to struggle as they have throughout history. Don’t believe that the government will make it all better for you with little to no effort like the Obama administration was trying to do. Under a Trump administration, with a little….no a lot of effort and ingenuity people will have a CHANCE to achieve the American dream. No guarantees in life all one can ask for is a chance. The PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS is the only right we have!

    1. pisces63 December 23, 2016

      Apparently, it’s don’t believe the government will make it better until trump. He is will make it better. Really? My husband’s job moved in 1982 at Thanksgiving. We did not whine. Cry. take drugs. I baked and sold cake, pies, cookies, etc. Our three kids had Thanksgiving and Christmas that year. My husband found what work he could, never whining. He even moved to Nashville for a while to work until he found comparable work here in Ohio. Since then, this 14 year house wife went to work, also(30 years now). we put 3 kids through college and bought that home we lost out on in 1982 which were about to bid on. Our first home. No president had anything to do with it. Hard work did. Just as my parents, sharecroppers kids from Louisiana who moved north in 1947. Owned their home by 1957. Held jobs and ran 3 businesses. Put 5 daughters through college. No one handed us anything. Yet, it is the right who continually vilify the unions who provided a lot of those middle class jobs. I have watched my white collar company, non-union go from great benefits and a chance to get 10% raises with attendance and work ethic 30 years ago and paid holidays off to 2.3% raise period lot less paid holidays. THAT is an attack on the middle class and yes, I make damned good money. Almost 4 X minimum, wage. Yet, 30 years ago, that was manufacturing union jobs that will not return no matter what the duck quacks about. My husband’s hasn’t,

      1. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

        I must say congratulations to you ma’am for working through obstacles like many have and achieved success through hard work and perseverance. What I said was that he would open the doors for that reality to many.

        At one time unions were a great help to this country but became a hindrance when they priced themselves out of what became a world market. Just take a look at the automobile business as an example of that. Corporations as well as workers must be reasonable when making demands. Today CEO’s are making way too much for nothing other than propping up stock prices and changes must be instituted. Labor, under a Trump administration, will have a bigger voice in Washington than anytime since the 70’s when big business took over.

        1. pisces63 December 23, 2016

          Another thing about the auto industry. Now a person and a robot makes up for 10-20 persons before. Automation is taking over and will continue to. then what? Soon they will not need a man or just a supervisor in a coal mine to make sure the robot keeps working well. Who will the disaffected blame, then? They cannot take over my job. Make it easier, yes. Mine is completely hands on and knowledge. Working at a health insurer, I have to know codes, pricing, covered benefits. Computers have made garnering the information so much easier than when I started where all information was compiled in huge books we got for our 6 week training. I went through 3 in a row in 1989. Then, I worked on 4 different systems for different plans. Now, under one. Yet, I learned. they will not have a voice in Washington because they are not respected and considering who he puts over the various departments, don’t hold your breath.

          1. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

            Let’s see how it plays out before thinking the sky is falling

          2. pisces63 December 23, 2016

            This is not a doom prediction. Just from following politics since Nixon, not to believe anything from republicans when it comes to the middle class. They have not done it yet and I do not believe they will now. Chicken little has been running around for a while now. I watch her here in Ohio when the right to governor gutted the wealthiest school systems to the point they needed levies where once before they needed none. I see it every day. Kasich is sitting on billions while communities are hurting. NO, the proof is in the pudding and they are failing miserably. The US congress quietly closed the case in Flint, Michigan to protect the governor. This just told on NPR. If Black lives do not matter at all and I just do not believe most other lives do either.

          3. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

            Have you not seen that Trump is neither a dem or republican? Kasich is an a$$hole that said Trump would never be president or the nominee for that matter. EVERTHING will change on Jan. 20th and for the better might I add.

          4. pisces63 December 23, 2016

            True about Kasich but I cannot trust an infant who rants on twitter. It’ss change alright but definitely NOT for the better.

          5. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

            Why not look at Twitter as the new norm in communication from our president. He doesn’t trust the media to get the message out without the spin so why not? Television was a new medium in the 50’s as well but we’ve grown to depend on it

          6. pisces63 December 23, 2016

            I haven’t grown to depend on anything but my own fact checking. Twitter lies, also. false news. . I do not like lies on any person, right or left. Friend or foe. tell the truth and let me decide.

          7. Thoughtopsy December 28, 2016

            He’s a coward who doesn’t want inconvenient questions and facts getting in the way of his con man spiel.

          8. Sand_Cat December 23, 2016

            Have you not seen that Trump gives the slightest damn for no one but himself? Have you not seen that he has throughout his career stiffed working people and small businesses, outsourced work to overseas, and hired undocumented workers rather than pay living wages? Have you not seen that you are nothing but a dupe and a sucker if you actually believed in his promises in those areas?
            Actually, it seems obvious to most intelligent people who better fits your characterization of Kasich when they read the tripe you post, “thinker.” You’re characterization is – as are most right-wing characterizations of the sane and reasonable – pure projection. Don’t know if you’re a thinker, but I do know you’re an https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/1f90362907c7fcb106c806ea5fb823887d1265f9d559b1f8e0884f3bf292e146.png

          9. Carole Moore December 23, 2016

            You. Are. Delusional.

        2. Sand_Cat December 23, 2016

          Yes, DAMN those unions and working people who demanded the multi-millionaire class pay those who made their money for them something they could live on.
          A word from your mentor on the subject:

    2. dbtheonly December 23, 2016

      The Constitution says nothing about happiness, unless you read that into the “involuntary servitude” part.

      It’s the Declaration of Independence that mentions the pursuit of happiness.

      The Middle Class is an aberration? A creation of WWII? They teach you that at Glenn Beck University?

      Snort of derision.

      From the earliest European settlements in the new world, and I’m going back 1000 years, All voluntary settlers came to get a chance at having something of their own. A chance for their children to have a better life. Even those brought as slaves shared that goal of finding a better life in America.

      A society of haves and have nots is the very thing America stands against.

      1. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

        No, it’s a fact db……there have always been the rich and then there’s everybody else. If you considered clearing trees, building your own house to be middle class then so be it. But for ever one of them there have been ones that decide to do nothing and want the government to provide for them.

        America stands for freedom. The freedom to pursue an individuals conception of happiness or live on the streets if that’s what they strive for. No guarantees from the government for financial freedom.

        1. charleo1 December 23, 2016

          Without the government, both you, me, and our kids and their kids, would be working 80 hours a week, living a company owned mud shack, and paid for our labor with company script good only at the company store. There’s your freedom from a big old ugly government the rich elite are trying to sell you on getting back to. Don’t believe me? You think they pay you more than a subsistence, because they like you? Because, if wages, and hours aren’t regulated by law, they would not be depressed everywhere? Or, broke people are just going to pull up stakes, and move to another job? Or start their own businesses with money they don’t have?

          1. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

            Quite dramatic but no assurance of it being truthful charleo. The government is there to keep us safe and build infrastructure and that’s what the new administration will bring along with job creation and give people a feeling of standing on their own two feet.

            Who are you referring to when you say “they” pay me more? Nobody pays me more anything unless I provide a product or service that delivers more. If you’re referring to the working man there is a thing called competition and if your labor is TRULY worth more you’ll get it down the street. The old saying rings true “I’d like to buy most people for what they’re worth and sell them for what they THINK they’re worth”!

          2. Sand_Cat December 23, 2016

            Well, we CAN rely on the UNTRUTHFULNESS of what you post, “thinker.”

          3. dbtheonly December 23, 2016

            Jim is right. Many people have an inflated view of their own worth.

            They’re called Libertarians.

          4. Sand_Cat December 27, 2016

            I limit myself to responding to one or two of Samaras’s lies, most of which are self-refuting.
            It looks like he’s taken over the comments section here, something I try to avoid helping him do.

          5. dbtheonly December 27, 2016

            Mama Bear pointed out that some of these guys are paid by the responses they get. I try not to do so.

            The problem is that there’s just enough truth in Jim’s positions to warrant discussion. They assert that “Liberals” are the absurd straw men that Fox “News” would have us be. But that doesn’t change the fact that “welfare” needs to be so structured that it does not become a crutch I haven’t heard that West Coast workers are working less to avoid blowing their benefits, but we’ve all heard similar stories.

            Jim asserts that the RW Plutocrats might be accepting positions for the right reasons. All persons taking high level govt. posts could be making a lot more elsewhere. Democrats, Republicans doesn’t matter. Public Service does not pay financially. I’ll grant that. Where I get off is appointing polluters to run the EPA, Charter School Advocates for Dept. of Education, a guy to run Dept. of Energy who can’t even remember it exists.

          6. dtgraham December 23, 2016

            They’ll compete all right. They’ll compete to see who will work for less in order to get the job. Without a solid minimum wage, collective bargaining, and/or other basic labour laws, that’s how it once was long ago. You don’t have to read history. John Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath will give you a taste of it.

            Do real life examples mean nothing to you? Are you that ideologically stupid?

          7. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

            Are you soft? This is not the great depression. If you have a wanted skill you will be offered top dollar in your field.

          8. dtgraham December 23, 2016

            Are you stupid? I’m obviously implying eras before the progressive reforms of the early 20th century, not just the great depression.

            If you don’t have a “wanted skill”, what kind of money do you think you’ll make without a minimum wage? Ex: Mcdonald’s workers make more in higher minimum wage jurisdictions only because of it. Funny how their counterparts lag behind in low minimum wage jurisdictions, no matter how much they think their labour is worth. Even a wanted skill attracts more money when the base minimum foundation is set high enough.

          9. charleo1 December 25, 2016

            Don’t believe me, see for yourself the way our own American based companies treat, and pay their workers in the third world. In countries without strong labor laws that prevent this very thing.
            Plus, they did this right here in this Country in the last century.
            So what makes you believe they’ve changed?
            And, if free market competition is working so well for labor, why has labor, and the Middle Class not progressed in wealth at nearly the same pace and gains as have corporate profits, and the rich?
            Why does 95% of the wealth being created today flow to the top
            5% of the economy, that now owns 75% of the property? It’s the investor class, and the largest multi-nationals that control the vast majority of capital. While in the real larger economy, small businesses that continue to create the majority of jobs, struggle as never before to get a foothold?
            If the system is working, Jim. Why is the chasm between the wealthiest, 005% and the rest of the entire population growing at a rate not seen since the days of the cattle and railroad barons, or the since the Great Depression of 1930s? Or why should the majority of corporations pay only 12% many much less, others zero % in taxes on profits. (less than you) Or be allowed to keep those profits overseas indefinitely and tax exempt? Or receive tax breaks, and write offs for moving jobs overseas? Or why should U.S. investments in foreign companies, or investments by domestic companies doing business overseas, receive the same sweetheart capital gains rate on their profits, as the investor and companies who put their money into creating jobs here?
            Now, if we’re wondering why the economy is not working, it’s really not the fault of true Capitalism. Not the kind we like to talk about, that created the largest, wealthiest most stable consumer class in the history of man. But it all really comes down to large companies paying the true cost of their labor, and their rightful share of the taxes that underwrite the tremendous advantages they enjoy in this Country.

            Like, paying people what they’re worth. Did you know the vast majority that are receiving public assistance are children with Mothers working a full time job? I believe giant and extremely profitable service, and retail cos. like Walmart, McDonalds, and Seven-Eleven, to name just a few, should be required to carry the full cost of their own labor. Instead of like it is now, and having it subsidized to the tune of 100s of billions of dollars a year by both Federal and State Govts. in the form of food stamps, childcare, housing, and transportation allowances, and of course healthcare, And the list goes on. This so their employees can afford to show up and help them make their record profits. That Jim, at one time was called overhead. And companies paid that, and then counted their profits. Not today. Today big cos. hire lawyers to write legislation skewing the rules in their favor. And then hire lobbyists to hand that document to leaders in Congress. Where it’s put own the docket, and passed into law verbatim. Now can you do that? Well, neither can I. But we both pay for it big time. While the top CEOs laugh all the way to the Cayman Islands where they stash their millions out of the reach of the taxman.
            And if you say Trump is going to fix all of this with a bunch of Plutocrats in his cabinet that have build their private fortunes taking advantage of this rigged economy, they rigged! I’m going to slap you. (Well, not literally) But I do want you to be smart. As I want all Americans to be smart, and see for themselves what is actually taking place,,. Otherwise, we’re never going to be able to fix it, and have the Country, and economy I think everyone wants to see. An economy, and government that works not just for richest 5%, but for the majority. We deserve it. Don’t you think?

          10. Jim Samaras December 25, 2016

            Merry Christmas to you and yours charleo!

            Companies, of course will pay the least as possible yet matching the going market which I don’t think is exclusive of America. In answer to the first question, labor hasn’t had a voice in Washington for 40 years. Corporations have sucked all the oxygen in the room due to lobbyists with deep pockets. I know it doesn’t look this way early on but DT will change the voices.

            The system is not working, to that I’ll agree and if you look at his policies those “sweetheart deals” will no longer be available. I think repatriation of those funds sitting across the ocean will help a great deal in taking the governor off our economy and if instituted properly will help our inner cities.

            I’m sure you’ve seen the results in many areas on the west coast where minimum wages have been increased to $15 an hour. Workers suddenly want their hours cut so that not to interfere with the monthly subsidize they now get! Peoples attitudes must change as well as we get back to fixing the problems you’ve mentioned above. Part of the cure is ending the subsidies or putting a defined time limit on them like they do unemployment. They should be asking for MORE hours not less but human nature is to take the point of least resistance. We must play to that human nature.

            Is it not possible those “Plutocrats” that you mention are in it for the right reasons charleo? That’s the way it was designed to be. Good people taking time from their busy lives to help the country and it’s people with no self interest whatsoever then get back to their private lives when the job is done to be carried on by the next self sacrificing American? I know it’s a hard vision to see after so many years of self serving idiots in charge that have gotten us to where we are today but we must look towards a better tomorrow and hope that they have the nations best interests at heart. That’s why I implore you and others on this board to at least give them a chance. I agree, we may be at the end of our rope as far as our democracy is concerned! The elections since 2010 have shown that the people don’t care for the democratic agenda as they’ve lost 10 Senate and countless congressional seats. I will be watching very closely what occurs over the next few months and if I’m wrong, will be the first on here to admit it. All I ask is that you do the same if I’m right then have a conversation as to how DT can make it better without all the political bashing of each others party affiliation and get back to real conversation which is what our democracy is all about.

            Again, Merry Christmas and a Happy, healthy and prosperous New Year to you.

          11. charleo1 December 25, 2016

            Fair enough to the last part. We will see. But don’t expect me to shut up when I see the opposite taking shape. And likewise Jim. A very Merry Christmas to you, and yours. And the all the best in health and happiness in the coming year.

        2. dbtheonly December 23, 2016

          First rich is a relative term. I’m talking Trumpian gold plated bathrooms type.

          The early settlements, whether in Vinland, Virginia, or Plymouth were strictly communal with everyone working and starving together. But for outside (government) supplies, none would have survived. Vinland didn’t.

          The gap between wealthy and not was much closer until recently. George Washington attended services at his local church. He visited and was visited by his neighbors. No doormen for him.

          The use of wealth has changed in the past ~30 years. John D. Rockefeller was probably the wealthiest man the US will ever see, based on constant dollars. His lifestyle was not ostentatious. He lived little more well than the middle classes of his time. The buildings he put his name on were the schools and libraries he donated to the good of all.

          Henry Ford had it best. He vastly overpaid his workers in relationship to what he might have done. He realized that a well paid worker was also a consumer. Keeping people in grinding poverty helps no one in the long run.

          So yeah, Middle Class has been with us from the beginning. When we’re all hacking our farms from the wilderness, there are no Princes Popes or Potentates to lord it over us. There are no Landowners to have us working on the share.

          1. Jim Samaras December 23, 2016

            Look at the gap in the countries they came from at the time. Haves and have nots.

            The Rockefellers liked to understate things Trump does not. Rockefeller was never elected president Trump was. So what?

    3. Thoughtopsy December 28, 2016

      Nice argument for the plutocracy.
      That always ends well.
      Real clever.

  9. ivory69690@yahoo.com December 23, 2016

    this is the game the GOP gang of pinhead idiots and the CLOWN DONNY DUMP want to play . who can win the gang of pinhead idiots destroying the safety net or DONNY DUMP DESTROYING THE COUNTRY AND MAYBE THE WORLD first ?

  10. pisces63 December 23, 2016

    This has been the right’s wet dream since Franklin Delano Roosevelt and his New Deal. Now, they see their dream has a chance.

  11. Paul Anthony December 23, 2016

    Thanks to Citizens United, billions of dollars was spent in an attempt to sway this election. Most of that money went to Hillary, but in spite of it, she lost.

    The very rich and the very poor voted for Hillary, but the middle class elected Donald Trump.

    Democracy is alive and well.

    1. johninPCFL December 23, 2016

      Putin elected his very own Agent Orange to bring about the subservience of America to Russia.

      1. prenestino December 23, 2016

        You are figuratively correct. The irony is that the Trumpers see themselves as super patriots, when in fact they are unwitting turncoats.
        Try telling them they put Russia’s interests above their own country’s. I’ll let you find out for yourself what happens.

    2. Sam the Sham December 23, 2016

      What are you, a fucking retard? Go back to sleep and don’t wake up ever again. You and your kind fucked my country in the ass and you should die for it.

    3. itsfun December 24, 2016


    4. Thoughtopsy December 28, 2016

      Who pushed Citizen’s United through again?
      Who strongly opposed it?
      Are you as stupid as you look right now?

  12. prenestino December 23, 2016

    Donald wants to restart the nuclear arms race. C’mon, Trumpers. Let’s hear what you think of that. Don’t be shy. Let it out. Fill these pages with your brilliant insights.

    1. itsfun December 24, 2016

      He does not want to start a arms race. He is just letting others know he will not stand by and let them build new and better weapons to murder us with.

      1. prenestino December 24, 2016

        So you spoke with him about this! Good to now. And which countries are threatening to murder us with these new and better weapons? And what kind of weapons are these?

        1. itsfun December 24, 2016

          I listened to President-elect Trump saying that. Have you ever heard of North Korea and their nuclear weapon testing? How about Iraq after the wonderful deal Obama made for them. Look at how many were murdered on 9/11 using hi-jacked airplanes. How many do you think would be murdered by a nuclear bomb or some other nuclear weapon? Do you recommend we sit back and watch and after getting thousands murdered, we decide to make modern weapons if its not to late?

          1. prenestino December 24, 2016

            its fun – thank you for your reasoned and honest reply. Quite some time ago both sides (USA and Soviet Union) decided on an anti nuclear weapons proliferation treaty with he realization that building such stockpiles was counterproductive for any peaceful goals. No, i don’t believe there is a problem with Iran (you wrote ‘Iraq’ I think you meant Iran) That deal has, so far, worked out very well. The Republicans say it hasn’t and have twisted it around for the reason they are against virtually anything accomplished by the Obama. Stepping up a nuclear arms race is a bad idea. Please consult sources you have more trust in than me. While we disagree, I think more people should show your kind of concern for what goes on.

          2. itsfun December 24, 2016

            Thank you; its great to be able to talk with someone without getting called a idiot or moron or worse. I doubt if anyone wants a arms race. Sometimes though you have to fight fire with fire. As long as there are rouge countries like North Korea, and religions that have a goal of killing all infidels, we will have to keep a great military and make sure they have the best. Currently we have been in a war somewhere for 8 straight years. Think of the roads, bridges, schools, helping homeless, fighting poverty in the inner cities, the money spent on these wars would help. I personally hate wars, but we have to be ready to defend our self.

  13. Elliot J. Stamler December 23, 2016

    I am somewhat surprised, from my own political centrist vantage point, to find myself in great agreement with what Thom Hartmann has written.
    But I shouldn’t be. Because I’ve commented for at least 8 years, as an avocational student of history, that our country is lurching toward a second civil war and the election of Trump and the ultra-conservative Republicans is a huge push forward toward that grim eventuality.
    I seriously strongly urge all centrists, moderates, and liberals to get guns where they are legally available. I have always been a proponent of sensible gun regulation and definitely still am—but that position fully supports the right of American citizens who pass background checks to arm themselves with weaponry suitable for self defense, as opposed to the insane NRA view where anyone can own as much of anything as they desire. I think every centrist, moderate and liberal had better face up to the fact that what now passes for conservatism is or has morphed into being, FASCISM and has its purpose the complete destruction of constitutional liberties, the primacy of the constitution, the rule of law, the independence of the judiciary, the two-party system and in whole, as Hartmann writes, of political democracy itself.
    Indeed, if you live in a state of outrageously restrictive gun ownership laws, go to one which is otherwise and get one there and bring it back home and let your home state laws be damned. I live in such a restrictive state and as a senior citizen I am far too old to do as I recommend but everyone who’s younger and fit should do it and soon.
    These people aim to destroy this country as a democratic Republic. Face it. Act.


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