Archive for the ‘Social Security’ Category

DEMOCRATS HAVEN’T TURNED BACK FROM 1968

Saturday, October 20th, 2018

 

A very interesting article written by a long-time Democrat, analyzing what has been happening in his party.  Nancy
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL

Democrats Haven’t Turned Back From 1968

The politics of identity and attack have supplanted the old liberal tradition, which favored national unity.

Democrats Haven’t Turned Back From 1968
PHOTO: CHAD CROWE

America is polarized in many ways, but one of the most significant is between generations in the Democratic Party. Coming out of the Great Depression and World War II, we present-day seniors saw liberalism as the promise of racial and social justice and broadly shared prosperity. We also saw it as a defender of civil liberties against abuses such as those that took place in the 1950s McCarthy era. Abroad, we supported a strong United Nations and other multilateral institutions to reduce conflict but had no illusions about the expansionist ambitions of totalitarian states.

In other words, the dwindling number of Greatest Generation and Depression-born Democrats came of age with a liberal tradition that is increasingly marginalized in today’s party. That was evident in Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation fight and in the party’s use of race, sex, ethnicity and other identity markers in politics more broadly.

The best example of the old Democratic Party’s aspirations was the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which provided that no citizen should receive favorable or unfavorable treatment based on irrelevant factors such as race, sex, national origin and religion. Our domestic agenda was further realized in President Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society: the Voting Rights Act, Medicare, Medicaid, the War on Poverty, federal aid to education and other measures designed to create greater opportunity for all, underwritten by a safety net for those who needed it.

You could feel the first big change in 1968 as a new generation in the West rebelled against established institutions and leaders. In the U.S., protest formed around opposition to the mistaken Vietnam War. I experienced this rebellion first as Vice President Hubert Humphrey’s assistant in the Johnson White House, then as a vice president of Columbia University during the disorders there, and later as an active member of the antiwar movement and George McGovern’s 1972 presidential campaign.

 

There was idealism in the protests but also cynicism and a touch of totalitarianism. “We Demand!” often preceded the protesters’ list of objectives. You could have a discussion with them over coffee or in small groups, but when an audience was present, a professor, speaker or political candidate expressing a contrary opinion would often be shouted down, sometimes with obscene chants. “Never trust anyone over 30,” the slogan went (or, as I often thought silently, no one under 25). Those in established positions were usually judged reactionary no matter the substance of their views.

(more…)

Share

THE U.N. AND HUMAN RIGHTS – NATURAL LAW AND POSITIVE LAW

Monday, September 10th, 2018

 

What Went Wrong With Human Rights

The conflation of ‘natural law’ with ‘positive law’ handed communism a philosophical victory after the end of the Cold War.

by James Taranto  Mr. Taranto is the Journal’s editorial features editor.
  August 18, 2018

When the U.S. withdrew in June from the United Nations Human Rights Council, Ambassador Nikki Haley described the council as “a protector of human-rights abusers, and a cesspool of political bias.” Aaron Rhodes agrees but thinks Ms. Haley was too gentle.

“The Human Rights Council has become a cover for dictatorships,” he says. “They assume the high moral ground of standing for ‘dialogue’ and ‘cooperation,’ a tactic for smothering the truth about denying freedom. Raising human-rights concerns is dismissed as divisive and confrontational, and a threat to ‘stability.’ Most of the debate there is technocratic blah-blah about global social policy—not about human rights at all.”

To U.N. watchers it’s a familiar critique, but Mr. Rhodes, 69, applies it far more broadly. In his recent book, “The Debasement of Human Rights: How Politics Sabotage the Ideal of Freedom,” he argues that virtually the entire human-rights enterprise has been corrupted by a philosophical error enshrined in the U.N.’s 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights—and that this explains the travesty of the Human Rights Council.

That error is the conflation of “natural law” with “positive law.” Mr. Rhodes explains the difference: “Natural law is a kind of constraint on positive law.” Think of America’s Bill of Rights, whose opening clause is “Congress shall make no law.” The idea is “that laws have to answer to a higher law,” he says. “This is a vision of law that is very deeply embedded in Western civilization,” finding premodern expression in the ideas of the Greek Stoics and the Roman statesman Cicero, as well as in biblical canon law. Natural law is universal—or at least claims to be.

“Positive law,” Mr. Rhodes continues, “is the law of states and governments.” A statute like the Social Security Act of 1935 creates “positive rights”—government-conferred benefits to which citizens have a legal entitlement. Positive law is particular to a nation or other polity: “I live in Germany,” says Mr. Rhodes, a native of upstate New York whom I met during his U.S. book tour. “I enjoy a lot of economic and social rights there, but they reflect the political values of that community.” The Germans are “keen on being a moral society, where the state helps people. They’re statist. This is their mentality, but I don’t think it’s the same mentality here.”

(more…)

Share

CULTURAL MARXISTS AT WAR WITH AMERICA

Tuesday, April 25th, 2017

 

Bigot, racist, islamophobe, xenophobe, not who we are as a nation, global citizen, safe spaces, civil society, social justice, inhumane, diversity – These are just some of the words we hear every day from the Cultural Marxists whose goal is to change our way of thinking about any issue that they want to control.
If we understand what their goals are, then we have a much better chance of being able to fight their insidious ideology.   Nancy  

Liberalism is not really freedom; it thrives on divisiveness, separation, and inequality.

Cultural Marxism and Euphemisms

By Dr. Ileana Johnson Paugh —— Bio and Archives April 24, 2017

Cultural Marxist academics, their sycophant students, and the main stream media are at war with America—a war of violent Marxist ideology and a war of cleverly chosen words and euphemisms that appear time and time again in many college courses, high school classes, in propaganda literature, newspapers, conferences, and in the manufactured news. Cultural Marxists are regular guests on all the alphabet soup networks masquerading as real news, spewing their hatred, their disdain and disrespect for our President, and their calls to renewed violence in the streets through their masked Black Shirts.

As David Horrowitz said, “Worse yet, this is the dominant culture in our universities, in our media, in our judiciary, in government, in unions, and in the shadow political universe of non-profits, with billions of tax-free dollars at their disposal.”

Language is a powerful tool of discourse, mass political indoctrination and agitation. Marxist Democrats are quite adept at using inflammatory language and deceptive euphemisms to suit their nefarious political ends.

(more…)

Share

$1 BILLION PAID IN BENEFITS TO THOSE WITHOUT A SSN

Friday, February 24th, 2017

 

Social Security Administration Paid $1 Billion in Benefits to Those Without a SSN

by KATHERINE RODRIGUEZ  February 23, 2017

The Social Security Administration paid $1 billion in benefits to those who did not have a Social Security number (SSN), according to a recent audit.

The agency’s inspector general found errors in how the government documented representative payees or individuals who are designated to receive retirement or disability benefits on behalf of those who cannot manage the benefits themselves, the Washington Free Beacon reported.

The audit, released Friday, found thousands of instances where no SSN was found on file.

The agency paid $1 billion to 22,426 representative payees who “did not have an SSN” and had not kept any paper applications supporting an individual’s case to receive benefits on someone else’s behalf, according to the inspector general.

“Furthermore, unless it takes corrective action, we estimate SSA will pay about $182.5 million in benefits, annually, to representative payees who do not have an SSN or paper application supporting their selection,” the inspector general said.

The agency also paid $853.1 million in benefits since 2004 to individuals whom the agency terminated as representative payees.

Share

OBAMA’S FISCAL LEGACY

Sunday, November 13th, 2016

 

This article was written the day before the election but contains very sobering and alarming information on the fiscal health of our country and what the next president  has to deal with.   As if there is not enough bad news in this article, the federal debt is approaching $20 trillion very quickly and increasing the debt ceiling will face Congress and the president by a March deadline.   Nancy
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL

Obama’s Fiscal Legacy

The President’s luck is about to run out—on his successor’s watch.

U.S. President Barack Obama ENLARGE
U.S. President Barack Obama PHOTO: GETTY IMAGES

Congratulations to the President-elect, whoever you are, because you’re going to need it. Our deadline arrived Tuesday before we knew the election outcome, but not before we can say with confidence that President Obama is leaving his successor a large and growing federal budget problem.

That’s the message in the Congressional Budget Office’s summary, released Monday, of the fiscal year that closed in September. Though the subject barely came up in the campaign—little policy substance did—the federal fisc is once again heading for trouble. There are some lessons in this for the next President, who will quickly realize that Mr. Obama’s fiscal luck has finally run out—on his successor’s watch.

(more…)

Share

THE TO-DO LIST FOR THE NEXT PRESIDENT

Sunday, November 1st, 2015

 

 

www.weeklystandard.com/print/articles/unenviable-job_1051333.html

An Unenviable Job

Share

WELCOME TO ILLINOIS, THE DEADBEAT STATE

Wednesday, December 31st, 2014

 

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
WELCOME TO ILLINOIS, THE DEADBEAT STATE
December 10, 2014
 
by Gerald Skoning  

Mr. Skoning is a labor and employment lawyer in Chicago

Like millions of other Americans, I have spent cautiously, paid bills on time and maintained a strict budget. That doesn’t make us heroes. But it does mean we have exercised common sense, which has been sorely lacking among the politicians in my home state of Illinois.

The Land of Lincoln has accrued a $111 billion unfunded liability for government workers’ pensions—up 75% from five years ago. There is an additional $56 billion of unfunded debt to cover health benefits for the state’s retirees. Illinois today is already spending more of its general fund on pensions than on K-12 education. One in four tax dollars pays for its retired workers’ benefits. Last year the state had to defer paying $7 billion owed to contractors. All this after Democrats in 2011 raised income taxes and corporate taxes by 67% and 30%, respectively.

It’s getting embarrassing to admit that I’m a citizen of such a deadbeat state.

The level of debt is staggering. According to a recent report by Statista Inc., Illinois residents owe $24,959 each as their share of the outstanding bonds, unfunded pension commitments and budget gaps the state has accumulated. Thank goodness this obligation doesn’t go on my credit report, or my credit rating would be in the tank along with the state’s A-minus bond rating, the worst of any state in the nation.

It is no wonder that 850,000 people have left Illinois for other states in the past 15 years, according to the Illinois Policy Institute. Or that Illinois has become one of the most business unfriendly states in the country (40th in a recent Forbes survey). (more…)

Share

THE END OF GOVERNMENT

Wednesday, February 12th, 2014

 


The end of government

By , Published: February 9, 2014

Something strange is happening in Washington. We are slowly dismantling the federal government, even as its spending is growing larger. The paradox is that governmental competence is being systematically degraded while the government’s size, as measured by its budget, is increasing. We are spending more and getting less, and — unless present trends are reversed — this will continue for years. It threatens the end of government as we know it.

The cause is no mystery. An aging population and higher health spending automatically increase budget outlays, which induce the president and Congress to curb spending on almost everything else, from defense to food stamps. Over the next decade, all the government’s projected program growth stems from Social Security and health care, including the Affordable Care Act. By 2024, everything else will represent only 7.4 percent of national income (gross domestic product), the lowest share since at least 1940, says Douglas Elmendorf, head of the Congressional Budget Office.

This is the central budget story, and it’s largely missed — or ignored — by political leaders, the media, political scientists and the public. The welfare state is taking over government. It’s strangling government’s ability to respond to other national problems and priorities, because the constituencies for welfare benefits, led by Social Security’s 57 million, are more numerous and powerful than their competitors for federal support. Politicians of both parties are loath to challenge these large, expectant and generally sympathetic groups.

The United States, of course, is not the only advanced society grappling with aging, but it is extreme in its stubborn denial of the obvious. The Pew Research Center recently polled people in 21 countries about whether aging is a problem. The United States ranked 19th in its unconcern, ahead of only Indonesia and Egypt, whose populations are young. Only 26 percent of Americans thought aging was a problem. The share was 87 percent in Japan, 55 percent in Germany and 45 percent in France. (more…)

Share

VIDEO – MICHELE BACHMANN AND BERNIE SANDERS SPAR ON CNN

Tuesday, January 28th, 2014

Share

TWO DIFFERING ARTICLES ON THE PRESIDENT’S NEW PROPOSED BUDGET

Thursday, April 11th, 2013

 

Two very differing articles regarding the President’s new budget proposal.  The first article is from the Wall Street Journal and gives detailed and concise reasons why the President’s proposed budget will not promote faster growth and a healthier economy.
The second article is from the New York Times regarding the President’s proposed budget which doesn’t miss the chance to blame Republicans for the budget impasse.   Nancy
The Wall Street Journal

  • April 110, 2013

The President’s Priorities

Debt in 2014 will hit 78.2% of the economy.

President Obama is pitching his new budget proposal as a fiscal peace offering to Republicans, but the details suggest everyone should expect more conflict. The fiscal 2014 plan he released Wednesday is a very slightly modified version of his previous budgets that reduces the deficit by raising taxes and trading defense cuts for more domestic spending.

The real news is that his budget ratifies much of the spending increase of the first term and tries to lock it in. He wants the feds to spend $3.78 trillion next year ($11,944 per American), which would still be 22.2% of national output nearly four years into an economic recovery. Before the financial panic in 2008, the government was spending about $1 trillion less, or closer to $2.7 trillion a year and an average of 20% of GDP—and President Bush was no slouch as a spender himself.

[image]

Mr. Obama wants federal spending to grow to $4.45 trillion by 2018 fueled mostly by the exploding costs of his Affordable Care Act. This spending surge appears smaller than it is only because the government will bank large reductions in military spending as the Iraq and Afghanistan wars wind down. But unlike in the 1990s, this peace dividend will be spent.

The budget’s supposed bow to Republicans is Mr. Obama’s proposal for a modest change in annual cost of living adjustments for Social Security. “Chain CPI,” as the change is called, would cut spending by about $130 billion and raises taxes by about $100 billion over the next year. We support the concept, but the White House also slips a mickey into that proposal (see below).

Even with this inflation change, federal spending would grow by more than if Mr. Obama simply let current law continue. This is because the President wants to eliminate the current caps on discretionary spending under the budget sequester that are set to save close to $1 trillion over the next decade. He wants to repeal the sequester that is providing the only spending cuts in at least a decade. (more…)

Share
Search All Posts
Categories