A key question for all Democrats. You are the party of big government, high taxes and income equality and entitlements.
Please enlighten us. Name one program that is done so well and successful that you would want more of the same?
I exclude the military in this exercise because that is something we must have and the primary function of our government as enumerated in the Constitution...a standing army...
Other than that, what other agency or federal program would you consider a model to be replicated and expanded?
Investigations into Trump. So far they have yielded millions in profits, got criminals out of government. We could use more of those results.
Jack, the problem is that there are people who feel that they are ENTITLED to live a COMFORTABLE life on others' dime. My late father stated that giving to able- bodied people create...….DEPENDENCY. He also maintained that giving to able-bodied people makes them PARASITES. People have to learn to RELY upon THEMSELVES.
Since the 1960s, poor people have it easier. There are programs which makes being poor a smooth road so to speak. Before the 1960s, poor people didn't have it easy. In those times, being poor wasn't glamorous. Poor people suffered but this taught them that poverty was arduous & if one want to get out of poverty, they had to look to themselves. Now, being poor is so easy that people don't want to improve themselves. Governmental programs killed the incentive of many poor people to improve themselves socioeconomically & educationally. Jack, if we cut the governmental programs by 80-95%, poor people will WORK to make their lives better & they will be more responsible in their actions!
National highway system
Really? FDIC? Where were they when the banks defaulted and we the tax payers have to foot the bill.
NOAA is becoming an activist organization. Have you heard how they manipulated raw temperature data to show a warming trend?
Social security is going bust as soon as 2026 by some estimates.
It was never solvent given our demographics. It used to be 20 workers paying for 1 retiree. Now, it is 2.5 people paying for each retiree.
Medicare is also going bust with ever increasing medical costs.
National parks was a great idea to preserve our environment. But, whenever there is a budget crisis, the first thing they close are the National Parks.
The Highway system is necessary for our interstate commerce.
Lol, you asked.
Do you think we would be better off without those programs?
No, but we could better if the private sector were to implement them thru competitive bids and to have accountability.
Two things will happen. One the cost will come down and two, the people doing the work will be accountable for the results. If they don’t deliver, they could be fired to go to jail if they commit a crime or fraud. Under the current system, fraud and abuses are par for the course. People just expect it as part of doing business.
I hope you see the difference.
The question was "What is doing so well you want more of the same". And your reply was a list of failing programs.
We have millions of senior citizens living in abject poverty - SS is not doing well. Medicare isn't much better, particularly as the cost of the program to those using it is deducted from already slim SS payments...and not considered when adjusting those payments for inflation.
Our parks are cutting employees all over the country due to lack of funding, and it shows. Badly.
I'll add that the highway system is failing as well - we have bridges all over the country that are in the final stages of deterioration and often cannot be traversed by heavy traffic.
While I approve of all of these as worthwhile programs they are not "doing so well".
Eh, predictable. A bunch of negative assessments with nothing to back them up.
I'm not going to waste my time with each one. A quick google search re Social security yields this https://www.cbpp.org/research/social-se … er-program
Perfection? No. Worthwhile benefits? Absolutely.
You forgot to mention that SS is going broke, and that the payments being made to the elderly fall nearly every year (every year if inflation is considered). I get a check, and this year was the first time in 5 years it rose. By about $10, which will at least help pay higher grocery bills.
Really? That's odd considering there have been COLA increases in four of the last five years:
As far as it going broke, I doubt our legislators will let that happen.
https://www.forbes.com/sites/johnwasik/ … 9450754e55
Good fact checking on your part to correct an obvious error.
My parents, who watched Fox News religiously, claimed that Obama was at fault for SSA checks that didn't increase, as in 2015 on your list.
What they and others don't understand is that SSA payments are linked to inflation. If there is no inflation, payments won't increase.
But if prices go down, as they do in a recession, their payments don't go down. Which they should.
My husband receives SS and I do the budget and pay the bills, so I immediately knew that couldn't be right. And only $10? That doesn't sound right, either.
The average Social Security benefit is $1,422 a month.
A 2018 increase of 2.8% on $1,422 is $40 or $480 a year.
$10 doesn't sound right. My COLA increase was $26. Wow, $26 dollars more per month. I should be so lucky that my cost of living was so static.
I think the point was that our SS system is really nothing more than a Ponzi scheme. Private systems, (such as the Galveston example), have shown that a different SS program would have greatly increased benefits to everyone; the payee, (the government), and the recipients.
Just to grab a number from memory, Government SS benefits of $1255 can be compared to the Galveston SS benefits of around $2200.
Yep, let's have more of the Government SS program.*
[i]*of course the government SS program is better than no SS program, but as previously mentioned, what programs would you like to have more of?
$10 doesn't sound right. My COLA increase was $26. Wow, $26 dollars more per month. I should be so lucky that my cost of living was so static.
I think the point was that our SS system is really nothing more than a Ponzi scheme. Private systems, (such as the Galveston example), have shown that a different SS program would have greatly increased benefits to everyone; the payer, (the government), and the payees, (recipients).
Just to grab a number from memory, Government SS benefits of $1455 can be compared to the Galveston SS benefits of around $2200.
Yep, let's have more of the Government SS program.*
*of course the government SS program is better than no SS program, but as previously mentioned, what programs would you like to have more of?
If a better way to provide financial security for retired and disabled Americans has been found, then I would be for it.
Require every worker and employer to contribute to a private retirement fund each pay period. They can pick from a variety of funds, all govt. approved.
This will not only get a much better return (given that when govt. "borrows" from our account it does so at the rock bottom, minimum interest rate possible) but will keep politicians hand's off of it entirely.
Yes, it is called the IRA or 401K. If people were to set money aside while in their working years and invest in SPY, that is the index fund that tracks the S&P 500, they would be millionaires in their old age of 65.
My COLA was more than $10, too. Then they took the increased medicare out of it and the result was a check that was about $10 larger than the previous one.
First time that happened. In every previous year the check actually fell...after getting a COLA increase that does not consider medicare costs.
Did you forget to deduct for the increase in medicare? Doesn't matter one whit what the government says I received; what matters is what the check was. And, after deducting for medicare, it rose about $10.
What is not discussed is how the interest rate was set near zero percent for those 8 years. This was deliberate. It is a way to keep inflation low, to rob from the savers and award to borrowers...and the biggest borrower of all is Uncle Sam.
Think about it. If you have savings in a bank, you get less than 0.1% in interests.
However, if you are a borrower, the interest rate for housing is near 4% while the credit card revolving credit charges 18%. Why is that?
Of course, the federal government has a debt of 20 trillion.
At 2% interest rate, that is $400 billion a year.
If we were to add those same COLA increases to the Federal Minimum wage? We get what? Somewhere between $0.10 to maybe $0.25 an hour increase per COLA raise...so we would be looking at around $8.00 per hour instead of the current rate?
A COLA increase of 1.7 -2.8% increase doesn't mean a whole lot when the actual Cost of Living increase by 3% or more per year.
We do have some good programs...in theory...in practice, they are not working well at all and need to be fixed...
The Social Security program wasn't to bad (not perfect) until congress started dipping their fingers into it...
The many programs that you mentioned in a previous post, are all good programs, but are not really successful (at least not anymore)…
There are many things that both parties need to stop fighting over and start working together to correct for the good of all Americans. And it is up to us, as voters, to put people into office that are going to work for the people, regardless of their party affiliation.
I agree with most of what you said. We must be careful to not let the perfect be the enemy of the good,
COLA is directly tied to inflation. You get 2.8% more if inflation goes up 2.8%.
COLA is a good policy for social security. Since people on fixed income, such as retiree, have no other means to increase their income after they stop working. As inflation eats away at the purchase power, it makes total sense for the government to make the adjustments.
However, this is not true for people working in entry level jobs...the one’s most likely to be affected by any minimum wage laws. Most of these jobs are entry level and are meant to be for youths and not meant to be a “living wage”. As inflation rises, and due to competition, wages will rise and fall based on supply and demand. Therefore, a national minimum wage is not a good policy. A minimum wage will have no effect in places like NYC where the cost of living is much higher than average. Most are getting above the minimum wage already. Where as in Louisiana, the cost of living is much lower and a minimum wage of say $15 would be counter productive.
So in 2015, there wasn't an increase in inflation?
Yes, using the CPI-W number (urban wage earner and clerical worker). It's more narrow than the broad Consumer Price Inflation that we hear about in the news.
"After 1983, COLAs have been based on increases in the CPI-W from the third quarter of the prior year to the corresponding quarter of the current year in which the COLA became effective."
I looked at both the Inflation numbers and the COLA numbers going back to ~1975...and they don't always match up...more often than not, the COLA ended up being lower...although there were a few times it was higher...
Based on the information that I seen, I can't say that it is a match for match across the board...some years yes, but not always...
But, because of things along these lines, that is why I have always set myself up for retirement age and will not need to rely on SS payments to make ends meet.
Here are some horror stories...
The IRS investigate conservatives grooup.
The VA keeping too sets of books and receiving bonus while short changing our vets.
The EPA, trying to shut down the coal industry with excessive regulation.
The post office, running deficits year after years despite periodic increases of postage stamps...
The public works projects to fix out infrastructure. This was suppose to be funded by taxes on gasoline. Yet, the bridges are falling apart and where I live near NYC, there are construction projects near the GW bridge that has been going on for 20 years still unfinished.
Medicaid fraud and food stamps fraud is common knowledge.
The INS and ICE failure to control our borders.
The Amtrak rail system, with its many derailments...
I can name a dozen more but you get the point.
Just a ridiculous question, couched in a way that there's no correct answer.
So because Enron went under and stole all that money, does that mean I can make a generalization about all private business? Why would I ever want private industry to do anything given what happened with Enron or Worldcom or a host of others?
In any bureaucracy, there's always going to be problems. That's one of the issues with bureaucracy - they get too big and bad things can happen. However, to make a blanket statement condemning all government entities and failures is the SAME as condemning all private businesses as failures because of the failures of a few.
Yes, all successful. All embraced by rational and educated American citizens. All under attack by the extreme right.
Many folks promote the Galveston Texas Alternate Plan as a model to begin with. It does pay higher retirement benefits to middle-high and high-income earners but doesn't beat SS over the longest time frames or for low-income earners.
But, it is not a Ponzi scheme destined for insolvency like our current system is. So maybe a similar privatized model could serve as a starting point.
And before the protestations about putting retirement security in privatized accounts; the Galveston Plan has weathered our markets since 1981 and is still a sound model. Nobody has lost their retirement income in 38 years of participation.
For details, just select a source: The 1981 Galveston Plan and Social Security
Good article. We need more experimentation like this to solve some of our problems. The pension or social security is just one of many...the VA is a huge disaster. The post office could use a modern remake...
The rail system Amtrak also. It is funny how they cannot be profitable even having a monopoly.
Jackdlee, Democrats are not the party of big government, high taxes and income equality and entitlements. You apparently slept through the last year, where Trump pushed through entitlements to cover some of the losses that the farmers have had due to his tariffs. You must of slept through Trumps new tax policy. Where the hardworking middle class had to take up the slack for all those tax breaks he gave his filthy rich supporters. Once again hurting the farmers as well.
??? Trump compensated farmers for some of their losses incurred because of government imposed tariffs and that means Democrats are not for big government?
Trump brings the tax on the rich more in line with what everyone else pays and that means Democrats are not the party of income equality?
Can you expand on the reasoning process to come to those conclusions?
Who do you think is paying for the loss of soybean sales to the Chinese, Dan? Watch out! Trump may be taking your money to pay the farmers. We all know how bad you hate to help people in need....
Disregarding the slur, I do believe I said that very thing. And that indicates the Democrats are not for big government how? Can YOU expand on your reasoning here? If there is any beyond hating Trump and insults, that is?
Trump acts as though the tariffs are something to be proud of, as if the tariffs are making up for the millions lost by the farmers and future losses as well.
I'm still confused, Randy. I'm just not following the logic of Trump acting as if tariffs are making up for millions lost by farmers means that Democrats are not for bigger government. The reasoning escapes me; even if the statement were true (it's false on the face of it as he compensated farmers for lost income) it doesn't seem to have anything at all to do with Democrats.
It is useless to argue or debate someone who has no knowledge of how economics works.
I didn't say anything at all about Democrats, Dan. I was speaking to the tariffs and the ill thought out logic of Trump's actions and false claims.
Oh! My bad. I assumed that replying to my post meant you were actually replying to the topic as well rather than starting out a whole new thought out of the blue.
Trump stumbles in the trade war and uses Socialism to keep moving forward. Ah, the irony:
https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/news … ut-farmers
Most will think I am the crazyone to think I can do much better without the Government and you can too.
Unless we can reconstructure the Government to work for the people first, rather than for the wealthy. Like all empires from the pass history shows this will collapse too.
I love my job and harmed nobody. Most people do not like their work and most people are a few weeks away from bankruptcy or homeless. The Government game to end homeless has as much chance of success as do chemo therapy to end cancer. When 100 million baby boomers in North America go to collect their pensions, many more will be living in the cars and RVs.
The latest big game changer for me is the Canadian Government is allowing me to build tinyhomes and the legalization of cannabis ( best known medicine known to man)
Because of my pension they won't allow me to live in Columbia fulltime. At least this is a healthy solution between me and the only God called Government..
Most of us, not living on welfare or government pensions, can do much better without government...until the neighbor comes knocking on the door with demands that you don't wish to fill but don't have the strength to deny.
With all the public guns greater than the people. No one would dare attack the US. As for the US Government should be fearing the people rather than us fearing them. As long as the people fear their government, the trickle down and all the other tricks will keep on crushing. Meanwhile 60 third world countries are doubling the US economy growth.
What is it that is stopping or preventing our continued growth?
What are these other 60 countries doing that we have lost?
We were the growth engine and innovators of the 20th century...
We were free from much of the ridiculous laws growing up. As for kids today have it much harder. North American were the greatest pioneers and innovator until the trickle down theory handed almost everything to the wealthy to begin ruining our lives.
Most third world countries do not have these hassle choking laws to keep in order, in which keep most things competitive. Plus third world are more rapidly up to date of the latest innovations online. Where here many ideas are outlawed or coded against us, yet not for the wealthy advantages. Wail I have been shot down for my pioneering eco villages, tiny houses and my growth of super foods. I was kick out of US by GW Bush for refusing him a war sculpture. US got half of the worlds war budget. Why is the largest corporations group is military, when it is based on destruction, not creation. A Horrible innovative decision.
Growing up, the homeless was unheard of. Today there is a tent cities for every north American city. Unless they ban homeless for every time they stand or sit anywhere for a time. The idea is to work middle class nuts, and to scare them with horrific treatment of the homeless. US will turn fast into a third world country, if they do nothing about the overwhelming wealthy.
But your neighbor has the power to enforce his desires regardless of your own. It might be a gun, it might be physical size, it might be more friends than you have.
Anarchy is a great thing...for those with power and the willingness to use it. For everyone else it's not so great, and pretending that it won't happen is to deny the reality of the past 100,000 years.
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