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Thursday, October 4, 2012

Political Posts Will Kill Your Reading Stats


Yep, that is quite possibly true, but it is also quite possibly a chicken's way of not taking a stand.  I have never posted a blog about politics except to say that I wish people would be more respectful of each other when they disagree. I still feel strongly about that. I also feel strongly about all the people who constantly post memes they copy and paste without checking their validity. I also feel strongly about people who think their thoughts are the only valid ones and everyone else is just plain stupid for not agreeing. My tolerance for that kind of thinking is zero.  I have very strong political views and I am not stupid. The mere fact that you disagree with my views does not make you stupid, either. It makes you different than me. That's all. Just different.

The one thing I will state openly and often is that whoever is currently sitting, or who has previously held the office of President of the United States, will get my respect and I will not speak harshly of them. They are or were MY President and the office alone, the fact that the majority of my fellow Americans voted for and thereby elected them to office is enough to earn and hold my respect. I may or may not like the actions they take or the inaction they missed, but I will respect and speak respectfully about them. This is so missing from our society today and I think the internet is partially to blame for this. It's much easier to be disrespectful by typing and putting it out there with no face to face ~ even with the people you are calling stupid and uninformed.

I will not do that now nor will I do that in the future. I will type exactly what I would say to your face and I will consider all of your comments as your replies to my words. Isn't that a fair and balanced way to handle political differences?  As a side note, it might even be beneficial to each of us to actually read (listen) to each other with an open mind. There could be some truths we hadn't considered. Or there could be just a bunch more "talking" points reiterated from some web site put up by the supporting group of the republicans or the democrats. That will gain neither of us anything. But it could happen, nonetheless.

I am basically a liberal. I believe we are our brother's keepers. I therefore, generally fall to the Democratic candidate based on the history of the Democratic party being more likely to provide for people who need help and expecting those of us who can financially do so, to help in a fair way to give those who need what they need. I wish churches and charities could do it all, but they aren't able, so yes, I believe our governments, both state and federal, should provide basic human needs to anyone who temporarily or permanently needs a hand up. Yes, I am that person who still feels like people of the United States should not live in squalor and should not go to bed hungry. They should not be homeless, without choice. I believe I should pay enough taxes to make that happen. I am willing to pay for federal and state programs to ensure our citizens live a decent life and are able to acquire a job that they are able to perform. Training should be available at no cost to those who need it to secure such a job. I am willing to fund this proportionately to my income.

I am fully in favor of making certain social security payments are available to all who pay into the fund. I am fine with spousal benefits for widows and widowers who shared the life of a working productive person who paid into the SS fund during their working years.  I am in favor of this program and a payment being based on the amount the worker has paid in over their lifetime. I am in favor of taking care of our seniors who have given most of their lives and upon reaching age 62 wish to retire and collect their Social Security Insurance.
They are entitled to this program and these payments. Have a fit, if you like, about these being called entitlements and deciding that means a free handout, but know this before you stroke out about that wording,

entitle: n, v
1) give just claim or right,
 give a title to,
 allow, permit; make eligible, qualify; authorize, empower.
2) name, call
This is according to Webster.

And dictionary.com says
1. the act of entitling.
2. the state of being entitled.
3. the right to guaranteed benefits under a government program, as Social 
Security or unemployment compensation

So...my take on this big controversy is like so many other things. It is just a HOT SPOT phrase with NO basis for truth.

Social Security and Medicare are entitlements!  They are programs we are entitled to because we are CLAIMING our own money which the government has been holding for us in trust.

STOP BEING OUTRAGED ABOUT THE USE OF THAT PHRASE....IT IS ACCURATE.

So now my question is ~ which candidate will most likely give me the country I want to live in?

My answer is Barack Obama with the help of a congress dedicated to getting things done. I am voting against every incumbent that is up for re-election on the Rep side of the ticket. I am looking for congressional support with enough condescending opinions to equate to good, solid results. I don't want a bunch of "yes" men, I want men and women who will give good serious thought to issues and choose what is right and best for their constituents. We don't have that now. We have an entire block of congressional republicans voting to keep Obama to one term. Politics over people.  Cannot continue.

Gov. Romney speaks often of not growing up privileged. I'm sorry, compared to my life, he was very privileged. He may have given away his inheritance from his father, but not before he used the money from the stocks his father gave him to achieve his college degree and support his wife and children. He used the money his father gave him in the form of stocks for years and was never in jeopardy of not being able to feed his family or pay a bill. Compared to me and most of my friends, that is privileged. So I find it hard to imagine he could ever imagine life without enough food, without enough money for the utility company and having the heat shut off in winter or the pills you need to stay alive not being purchased because the rent is due. Owning a home is out of the question for many people now, it was never out of the question for the Romney's. How can anyone expect him to have any notion of what we are really living without here in the heartland. I can't imagine never having to even give these things a second thought, so I can't expect the Romney's to get my life style either.

I DO expect the Obama's to get it. They lived it. They were without money and worked to pay off student loans, their parents did not give them stocks to draw interest and dividends from to pay for their expenses. They do get what is going on here and they also care. I'm not convinced by Romney's plan that he cares so much about us as he cares about keeping a Republican congress to support his trickledown economics plan moving forward. It has never worked and isn't economically sound.

Quoting Clinton...”it's arithmetic.” It doesn't work and way too many details are missing. We have a month left and I am looking at my absentee ballot right in front of me, now. I am ready after the debate last night to announce Romney did not win that debate, because he didn't tell me anything new or anything that made sense to me concerning my social security, future Medicare or tax improvements. My health insurance is a main concern to me and he says give it back to the states. My state is in big, big financial trouble and it can't afford to help me out with insurance. And it won't help me anyway; we have a Republican Governor who believes everyone can have insurance, if they want it.  

Very long...sorry....you probably checked out a long time ago....but I'm done now and I'm listening.  The floor belongs to you....be kind.

Just so you know, if you leave a rude or hateful comment, I will delete it.

Jo

41 comments:

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    1. Wow...you're a fast reader...I guess I need to go edit...didn't realize it was all messed up here. UGH

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    2. Had to reedit and repost...not sure what was going on there, but it was too hard to read. Better now.

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  2. Jo - It's your corner of the virtual world and you are 'entitled to say what you feel and believe, which I support. Sadly, others will not. Too many have forgotten what our this country stands for - freedom of speech, even if you don't like what the other person is saying. Your passion shines through.

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    1. While I agree with you Brenda, I invite the other side to speak. Just be respectful.

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  3. Very nice piece Jo. I try not to discuss politics or religion because the subject usually causes such a hullabaloo that it's not worth it. I have my opinions and I USUALLY keep them to myself. However, I can say that I am a conservative liberal. One thing for certain, Romney is not my choice for President or anything else for that matter.

    Chele ;)

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    1. That is very interesting to me, Chele. Thanks for sharing.

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  4. It became very clear to me during the debates that I am exactly the person that Romney wants to put on the sacrificial altar to pay for tax cuts for the wealthy and expanding the military. I'm 50 and middle-class. He specifically mentioned that people my age would not have the benefits we've paid into. His plan entails taxing the holy shit out of me and then taking away my social security and medicare and replacing it with "Good luck to you. Too Bad. So Sad." and private insurance which will probably not accept me because he's going to do away with Obamacare and the protections it provides against insurance companies refusing people for "pre-existing conditions".

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    1. Yes, Cloe, I am wondering exactly who will benefit from his economic program.

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  5. Thanks, Jo! I agree with everything you said and you said it so well.

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    1. Thank you so much. That's nice to hear, for a change! lol

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  6. I would recommend the Rolling Stone's in-depth articles on Romney and his Bain years. Take the time to really read, and really let his "morality" sink in.

    I generally don't - or didn't - write "politically." I'm still in a constant state of learning, but... everything is political, and to pretend otherwise is silly on our parts. Or head in the sand. And the kind of country I want to live in and be proud of doesn't disenfranchise its women, its elderly, its poor, its sick.

    I wish President Obama had performed better last evening, and I wish he were better able to communicate that a country without fundamental health care for all its citizens is a third world country. But I believe his vision is closer to "getting it" than the opposition. And if Congress could work for the greater good (as opposed to their own good), we might - bit by bit - rebuild a country with values we could be proud of.

    Everything is political. The roads we drive on, the emergency vehicles that help us when we're injured. Police, firefighters, teachers... we need a federal government to provide consistent and equitable services relative to infrastructure not to mention health & education. To say "leave it to the states" and the "private sector" is, in my opinion, to guarantee and expansion of the disenfranchised.

    A civilized country doesn't come free of charge. And we shouldn't expect it to. Untangling decades of mess doesn't come fast. And we shouldn't expect it to.

    As for the disenfranchised - THEY is US. If not now, eventually.

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    1. Beautifully said and I have read a great deal about his Bain years. You see, originally I was wanting to support Mr. Romney. His father was a remarkable governor for Michigan and I so hoped he was his father's son. I am disappointed and not impressed with his elite views of the country and what we 'need' to have done.
      Disenfranchised is a word for many, many people right now.

      We need sweeping reform of our electoral system, our political systems and most assuredly our congressional morals and compensations. I believe the congress should not be setting their own pay rates, their own benefits and whether it be a committee to approve their requests or a presidential seal to approve, someone needs to above and final word on their compensation packages. I believe they are ridiculous and I know most people agree with me about that, yet it remains.

      It is time for grass roots movements to attack and reform our status quo attitudes and archaic way of doing things just because that's how we have always done it. Wrong is wrong no matter how many years you've been doing it.

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  7. Jo, Well Said ... I would add something but you have summed it up. Oh, here is one. Neither the government or the insurance companies is allowed to dictate to me what is "right" for my body.

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    1. I agree with that and we have laws in place to protect you from anyone telling you what you may or may not receive. They can decide not to pay for it, but you can still receive it, thanks to Obamacare...unless Romney repeals it.

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  8. I will admit that I have been both saddened and shocked in this country's choice for president in 2 of the last 3 elections. But I still remember that Churchill quote, "Democracy is the worst kind of government, except for all the other kinds that have been tried so far." ... Or words to that effect.

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  9. While complaining about the "entitlements" the less fortunate have at their disposal, the wealthy,conservative, right wing republicans seem to forget that they are using their version of "entitlements" through tax deductions, off-shore accounts, corporate perks and more.

    I will vote for Obama for many reasons, but primarily it's a societal thing for me - I completely agree with you regarding being our brother's keepers. I also believe strongly in a woman's right to control her own body, and the rights of gay couples to marry, two issues that weren't touched on in last night's debate. I understand the conservative, republican point of view, but sometimes I can't believe how cold and uncaring some republicans can sound - many of whom are friends and family members that I love very much.

    Politics is a fascinating business.

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    1. I know. Many of my friends who are in the same basic financial place as we, feel the republicans have all the answers because lowering taxes is all they care about.
      I am much more interested in Medicare and Social Security being held carefully in check.

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  10. I'm on the other side, Jo. While Romney would not be my first choice, for me, he is the best choice. Mostly because I believe strongly, strongly, in states rights. The "grass roots movements" you mentioned. Our federal government is SO big it's hard to feel you have any voice at that level. But I disagree with Romney on other things ie, pro-life stance and a stance against same sex marriage. They are both two mediocre choices from my point of view. I would love to see a viable 3rd or even 4th party. I would love to see candidates be able to run without the millions and millions of $$ that are spent and "needed" to make it to the White House today. How many passionate, good fits, would be able to step up? And I don't think someone in the office of president should be disqualified as a viable choice because he's been successful. I don't think that makes someone unable to relate to people who struggle. And I don't think a president, alone, has that much power anyway. I agree with Obama last night, that the federal government's main role is to protect our country, ie, as commander in chief, maintaining a strong military and working with other world leaders.

    I'd vote for anyone who moves to send power, workable solutions and a sense of village back to the states. That's where we can relate the best to what is happening around us. That's where we can dig in and really make a difference. I hope I don't have to run for cover for writing this. I appreciate your post. And I too, am not a chicken. In most cases, on either side of the political fence - we all love our country, pray for those who govern, and hope for more civility in an increasingly rude, crass world.

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    1. No need to run for cover! I appreciate your well thought out post. We do all love our country and we all want a good resolve.
      I totally agree with revamping the entire 2 party system and taking money out of the equation. Anyone should be able to run for office without spending those millions of dollars and creating those thousands of 'favors' that have to paid back.
      One thing I would argue or disagree about or maybe just clarify...I don't hold Romney's success against him, I hold his money he did NOT earn but was born into against him because he then states he knows what it is to be without enough money...he does not. He has never been without the safety net of the Romney fortune. He didn't earn that, he was born to it. His father earned it.

      Thank you, Barbara for sharing and except for Romney's inability to distinguish the truth from what he thinks, I don't think he's a bad guy.
      I do find abortion to be MY decision and I do find gay marriage to be none of my business, unlike Romney. And if the states were in a healthier state, I might even agree with giving more power to them, but this is not the time for Michigan to take on any new programs. We could not survive that.

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  11. This is the best political blog I've read yet! You "get it" Jo! We grew up in the same world and you and I share the same values. Reading your comments I also realized that you have a remarkable bunch of friends! That shouldn't have surprised me, because I've been one for many years! Love you bunches!! Gary Smith!

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    1. Thank you Gary. I appreciate your words and I love you tons. Respect is all I ever ask when commenting.

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  12. I'm fairly open about my political leanings, but then again, I'm pretty open about most everything. Like you, I'm also completely fine with others seeing things differently and voting accordingly.

    There was a time (when I was younger and more starry-eyed) when I voted for each office on a ballot, not minding the candidates' political parties. I don't do that any more. I now vote a straight party ticket, simply because it's become abundantly clear to me that if a President is from the opposing party to the majority in Congress, jack shit nothing will get done. Congress will do their damnedest to tie the hands of a President who marches to a different drummer, even if that means shooting down programs that will benefit their constituents...and oftentimes even if they've previously supported the very thing up for a vote. Crazy and infuriating, but true. And this goes or both parties.

    You and I operate in a mostly similar fashion, politically. One thing we differ on, however, is that you offer automatic respect for all Presidents. I have had a great deal of respect for some of the men who've held the office and little to none for others. The mere act of winning the position does not, for me, mean they are deserving of my respect. What I do offer all of them is the prayer that they will be guided by decency and kindness, and will be granted the strength to perform what must be a terribly difficult job.

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    1. We are pretty much on the same page, Beth. I would add that I said, I respect the office of Presidency...therefore, the holder will be treated with respect for the office he holds. That is a little different than the man himself having my respect. The office always has my respect and therefore, though I may not like the actions of the man, the President will be given my respect because the majority of my fellow Americans have chosen him(her) to lead us. I may descent, but I will do so respectfully.

      Glad to hear from you...miss you.

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  13. Jo, this is a great post. I usually avoid publicly discussing politics like the plague; not because I don't have strong opinions, but because so many people don't want to talk about the real issues, they only want to repeat the lies and attacks that are so rampant. I agree with you completely on health care and social security. I believe if Romney is elected and congress will go along with him, many of us in the middle class will soon be in poverty. Obama may not have been the best President we've had but he at least does care about the common person. Many of his shortcomings have been because he had a congress that fought him at every turn. Congress is what really needs to be revamped from the bottom up. I will support President Obama because I believe he is the best choice for the majority of Americans.

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    1. Thanks for the support and I would have guessed we had similar thoughts. Congress is the key.

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  14. Jo, I so agree with you comments on this political issue. If Obama is going to be voted in, then the Republican Congress has to go or we will have 4 more years of the same thing. It's to bad that Whomever is voted in to office on either side of the isle does not vote what's best for the people but just vote against the standing President if he happens to not be of their party. What's the point. That would be one of the big reasons I would vote for Romney, my fear that the houses would remain a mojority Republican and that won't work.

    I re-posted and article about entitlements this morning and hesitated doing because I knew in advance it wouldn't be taken the way I felt. I read your difinition of entitlement and 100% agree that those who have worked and or are married to someone who has worked are entitled to the SS they paid in. I believe that we should have a system in place to help those who are legitimately in need and Help them get back on their feet, if that means helping re-educate for a new job or whatever. I do believe there has to be an end in sight though. Jerry is 74 and started his SS at 65 and still works, it really frustrates me that he still has to pay SS on every dollar and that because we (they won't just count his income) have to pay income tax for the second time on his SS. Wrong
    My definition of entitlement might be wrong but, the job I happen to be involved in right now you would not believe the people who don't work, will never work and know how to bleed every dollar out of an already broke system. Some have never worked. That is indeed a messed up situation to keep taking from those of us who have worked mostly since our early teens and watch program after program instituted to keep giving these people more and more. It's a sad thing to see it day after day and know that it really doesn't matter who is in office, things like this won't change because so many of these people wouldn't know how to take care of themselves if the bucket went dry. I know there are trully needy, disbled, handicaped and other people qualified to receive our care but it's alarming to see the numbers stack up of those who are able bodied and have no intention of ever getting out of the system.
    Sorry I took up so much space, as I said, I see it on a daily basis and it can take the wind out of my sails if I don't remember how Blessed I am and know that I would never willingly make the choice to live that way.
    Love you my friend. That's enough politics for me today. I give, I donate and do what I can to help people. That's the American way, my heart breaks for the dirty, poorly clothed, children who survive day to day. Is there an answer? For me it's to continue to do the best I can but, I don't want to be a socialistic country, that has been proven to not work either. Somebody tell me to shut up!

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    1. I will never tell you to shut up about how best to help people who need help and not enable the system abusers to continue to abuse. Welfare reform is a completely different issue from social security and one with many reforms needed and soon. Our state cannot continue to support people who can be trained and placed on someone's payroll.

      I would only disagree with voting for Romney based on getting something done...his something will set women's right back, we can't afford that. His something will cost us security as far as medicare goes.

      The double taxing on SS is only because Jerry is still working and you work and we have the same thing. It really isn't fair, but it is the way the system is set up. We will not be paying anything after we get through this year, Mike will be retiring. I think we will then be income tax free. While I think SS should not be included in our income, it is and we are paying our fair share to the fund to keep it going plus the additional as per the current tax code. Now just for your consideration, if Romney's plan is carried out, you will be paying an additional amount because you will loose some of the deductions we now enjoy to keep our income at a lower tax rate. Just something else to consider.

      And let's not forget the 47% of us that he isn't interested in worrying about.

      I can't quite get passed those tapes. What an arrogant ass he was in front of his financial cohorts. sorry...he is NOT a viable option for me.

      I love you, too and since we agree on more than we disagree...it's all good!
      I'd love you anyway.

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  15. Totally agree that it is the office of the President of the US that we honor and respect, even if we do not always agree with the person. Respect is largely missing all over America. Velda

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  16. Not sure if I will vote for Romney, I am sure I will be well informed before I vote. I agree that he is arrogant must be because of his wealth and possibly not having a clue. My thought was I'm not wanting 4 more years of political fighting and I have to admit that's a cop out on my part. So..back to education and well informed voting and above all else, I believe that God is ultimately in control and it's my job to be a good citizen and vote. It's all good in the end. I will be glad to see politics drop off facebook. Velda

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    1. me, too and I pray we all make a good decision collectively

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  17. Good for you to express your opinions!

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  18. Jo, I also agree about being responsible for those less fortunate and find it fascinating that often those that put religion into politics don't think this way as Jesus did.

    One of my co-workers can't believe I think access to health care is a right not just something for those that have a good job or can afford it.

    Like Velda, I am sick of the gridlock in Washington DC. Americans manage to compromise and work together for solutions in all aspects of our lives; why can't our elected officials?

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    1. Because we don't make them do that. If their pay was not a lifetime thing, if they had to live within their means and pay for insurance and live one foot in the real world, if they didn't owe every 'cause' for the campaign contributions and if they could just go to Washington and talk to each other as people rather than as Rep and Dems...maybe then, maybe.

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  19. I love your line, "The mere fact that you disagree with my views does not make you stupid, either. It makes you different than me. That's all. Just different." That is the beauty of america, right?

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    1. It is indeed one of the bestest things!

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  20. Thanks, Jo. This is brilliant. I tend to agree with everything you said, but more than that, I just want to thank you for saying it. I read so often that people should avoid posting about politics on Facebook and on blogs, and I find this so dispiriting. I want to hope and strive for a world where I can share my views and still hold a place for anyone to disagree, if they do so with respect. I think we can't afford to be quiet just because it makes for potential disagreement. Disagreement should be where all the creativity is found, where we have to justify a point of view, listen to someone who feels differently and work together with them. We need to learn how to speak politely to one another again or we won't ever have a civil society. You have done that so elegantly here and I admire you greatly.

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    1. Thank you so much. It really is a matter of fact checking and then choosing the candidate that fits your values and your views. Now the sources for fact checking are important also. Looking into their past performance and past voting records available at the gov we site can tell you a great deal. Then try their platform page and see if it matches what they voted in the past. Very informative and accurate. No room for spins. Are the platform pages filled with vague ideas or plans?

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