Tuesday, September 27, 2011

The President Talks Tough | + most of us hear just part of the story

Whatever you think President Obama said to the Congressional Black Caucus last weekend, don't believe it until you see it in context.


When people...press, pundits, political opponents...take words out of context, how is that not lying?

Sunday, September 18, 2011

bizarro world | the wealthy + the poor in America | a respectful exchange

I repeat here a brief exchange on the post, bizarro world | the wealthy + the poor in America, because the Comments feature — properly, I expect — doesn't allow for embedded links and I thought it was important to highlight the Forbes 400 List and David Kay Johnston's Reuters reporting; which I've done below.

Nate commented on my bafflement about those who characterize America's working poor as pampered tax dodgers while painting our wealthiest citizens as beleaguered victims. Nate wrote:
And yet both of these characterizations can be found to be true. Wealthy & middle-class citizens over-spending and tying themselves to every penny of a paycheck, underwater in a mortgage and indebted up to their eyeballs. The working poor doing enough to stay under the gov't threshold and continue to get assistance, while buying new cars, digital cable packages and the latest kicks.

Friday, September 16, 2011

bizarro world | the wealthy + the poor in America

Somehow I woke up this morning in an America with people who characterize our wealthiest citizens as beleaguered victims living from paycheck to paycheck and our working poor as lavishly pampered tax dodgers.

I find this bizarre. 

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Headline from the Future | Health Coverage


Official Denied Emergency Treatment

(Arlington, VA) U.S. Senator Tom Brown died yesterday in the parking lot of a Washington area hospital after being denied entrance because he lacked proof of insurance. 

The senator was taking a run, an aide said, when he complained of chest pains. “We took him straight to the hospital, but he didn’t have his wallet and they wouldn’t let us in.” 

Speaking off the record, a hospital employee who is not authorized to speak to reporters told the Post, “They said, ‘He’s a United States Senator!’ I said, ‘I don’t care if he’s effing Ron Paul: No insurance equals no treatment.’ If I make an exception for some clown who says he’s a senator, where does it stop? Treat first, ask questions later? What kind of business model is that?”

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

The American Jobs Act | Letter to My Congressman


September 13, 2011

Congressman Bilbray, 

I urge you to use your position on the House Energy and Commerce Committee to fast-track passage of the American Jobs Act. If it is signed into law, your constituents can begin taking advantage of the provisions of this bill on October 1, 2011 — exactly when we need the help. 

Please sir, call your colleagues to account if they attempt to game this important legislation. 

The need is now, the time is now. I call on you to act now. 

respectfully, 

Jim Hancock

[Read it for yourself — click to download a pdf of the American Jobs Act to your download folder]

Saturday, September 10, 2011

THE AMERICAN JOBS ACT | FACT SHEET


Yesterday, I posted the transcript of President Obama's American Jobs Act speech before a joint session of Congress.

Here is the Fact Sheet that accompanied that address, concluding with round costs associated with each item. Next week, the Administration will deliver the President's detailed proposal to Congress. 

THE AMERICAN JOBS ACT | FACT SHEET 

1. Tax Cuts to Help America’s Small Businesses Hire and Grow
  • Cutting the payroll tax in half for 98 percent of businesses: The President’s plan will cut in half the taxes paid by businesses on their first $5 million in payroll, targeting the benefit to the 98 percent of firms that have payroll below this threshold.
  • A complete payroll tax holiday for added workers or increased wages: The President’s plan will completely eliminate payroll taxes for firms that increase their payroll by adding new workers or increasing the wages of their current worker (the benefit is capped at the first $50 million in payroll increases).
  • Extending 100% expensing into 2012: This continues an effective incentive for new investment.
  • Reforms and regulatory reductions to help entrepreneurs and small businesses access capital. 

Friday, September 09, 2011

The American Jobs Act | Transcript

The White House
Office of the Press Secretary

Address by the President to a Joint Session of Congress

United States Capitol
Washington, D.C.
7:09 P.M. EDT
THE PRESIDENT:  Mr. Speaker, Mr. Vice President, members of Congress, and fellow Americans: 
Tonight we meet at an urgent time for our country.  We continue to face an economic crisis that has left millions of our neighbors jobless, and a political crisis that’s made things worse.
This past week, reporters have been asking, “What will this speech mean for the President?  What will it mean for Congress?  How will it affect their polls, and the next election?” 
But the millions of Americans who are watching right now, they don’t care about politics.  They have real-life concerns.  Many have spent months looking for work.  Others are doing their best just to scrape by -- giving up nights out with the family to save on gas or make the mortgage; postponing retirement to send a kid to college. 
These men and women grew up with faith in an America where hard work and responsibility paid off.  They believed in a country where everyone gets a fair shake and does their fair share -- where if you stepped up, did your job, and were loyal to your company, that loyalty would be rewarded with a decent salary and good benefits; maybe a raise once in a while.  If you did the right thing, you could make it.  Anybody could make it in America.

Monday, September 05, 2011

For Labor Day | The Book of Common Prayer


Almighty God, who hast so linked our lives one with another
that all we do affects, for good or ill, all other lives: So guide
us in the work we do, that we may do it not for self alone, but
for the common good; and, as we seek a proper return for
our own labor, make us mindful of the rightful aspirations of
other workers, and arouse our concern for those who are out
of work; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and
reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and
ever. Amen.

— RANTS + REFLECTIONS ON THE COMMON GOOD —

[mostly]