the Atlantic I am so disappointed in your piece ‘Are Most Federal Workers Overpaid? CBO Says Yes’ it is just poor journalism

I just read ‘Are Most Federal Workers Overpaid? CBO Says Yes By contributors@theatlantic.com (Jordan Weissmann)’ and have to reiterate what I say in my title.  I am so disappointed.  I posted the following comment on the Yahoo site and sent a comment to the Editor.

First, the Atlantic should be ashamed for even offering this as journalism. This article does nothing but incite anger unnecessarily. It does not provide enough information or insight into the actual report to allow the readers to understand that politicians are not even included in the report. This is clearly obvious by the masses of comments about firing congress I see posted.

This report, which incidentally I think was a waste of tax payer money, tells us that on the low end of the scale employees with less education are paid more when working for the Government than those working in the Private Sector. Conversely, the more education you have the more money you make in the Private Sector vs working for the Government. That is all this graph shows.

The sad comment to all of this is that people are calling for the Government to fire people, which is exactly what we don’t need at this point in an economic recovery, unless it is the politicians that made this mess.

What we need is reform, yes reform, that requires the Private Sector to pay a living wage, including to those with less education. Additionally we need education reform so we can educate EVERYONE.

We are rapidly headed toward the entire US looking like George W. Bush & Rick Perry‘s Texas: a ton of under-educated people working extremely low paying jobs barely able to survive; having to turn to public assistance in order to put food on the table while their so called leader brags that he has the highest job creation rate in the nation. Then he goes about cutting those very programs and gives tax breaks to the richest who do not need it.

All in all, a poor piece of reporting. I urge you to go read the report for yourself, the link is in the piece – it is only 28 pages if you are truly interested in the data. You will glean far more information than from reading this.

http://www.cbo.gov/ftpdocs/126xx/doc12696/01-30-FedPay.pdf

First of all, that “more money” is not a lot of money being made on the low end of the scale as far as the less educated employees are concerned.  The overall salaries for these jobs, looking at the graph, appears to be under $25k for people with no college education.  Next to that is the sad wage of the Private Sector employee which is even less.  Follow along on the graph and you will see that the average wage of persons in the U.S. that are lucky enough to have a 4 year Bachelors degree is under $40k per year and those with Masters Degrees are  at $40k or barely above in both the Government and Private Sector jobs – they are virtually the same pay-wise.  The next big disparity comes along when you get to the Professional Degree or Doctorate.  A Government Employee who has Professional Degree or Doctorate makes under $50k according to the graph and the Private Sector employee is over $60k.

So, what it comes down to is the CBO is saying that the lowest paid persons in their organizations are being paid too much.  Their pay rates are barely a living wage, yet, it is too much and they want to cut it.  It is shameful for anyone in the U.S. to begrudge a person who was not lucky enough to get a college education the little bit of extra money they may be able to make in one job vs. another.  This is disgusting.  So, why would they say this?  Who stands to gain?  Who does the CBO report to?  None other than the Speaker of the House.  Yep, John Boehner.  That jerk.

I don’t know about any one else, but I am sick of these pointless inflammatory pieces that are trying to skew opinion of the Government waste,  especially because of the election.  Considering the steaming pile of dung that Obama received when he took office I am pleasantly surprised with what he has accomplished, even with the obstruction the GOP has been guilty of.  (I sure hope everyone is taking notes on how they have pretty much told the rest of us where we can go because they are going to do what the money people tell them to do regardless of the consequences to the people or the planet).

So, reading the report you will see that the Department of Defense employs approximately 35% (they said more than one third, I did the math) of the Government civilian workforce (program administrator, information technology worker, and program analyst); the only way to reduce that cost is to get out of the business of war.  Not a popular plan as far as the GOP goes.  Also, not something Obama is doing.  He is raising military spending to the tune of $6 billion a year, every year.  It seems a bit much to me, but that is a discussion for another day.

Remaining civilians employed by the Government are at the Department of Veterans Affairs, who employ 14% of the persons counted.  Of those half were medical professionals and the majority were nurses, not doctors.

There is also the Department of Homeland Security employing 8% where about a quarter are everyone’s favorite…..TSA.

The remaining 43% of federal employees work for the other departments and agencies of the executive, legislative and judicial branches.  In these areas the most common occupations are in I.T., and criminal investigations.

My question is where is the editor that should have looked at this and said WTF?  Have we really lowered our standards so much that anything submitted to a reputable magazine, regardless of being newsworthy or informative will be published?  I hope not, we need real reporters who can offer an unbiased, factual, overview of the item or issue they are reporting on.  Please join me in sending an email to the editor expressing your disappointment in this article, they have a form on their website that allows you to send a note to the editor and that link is http://www.theatlantic.com/contact/.

I also urge you to contact you elected representatives and comment on this report, it is a sad commentary on the use of tax payers dollars to try to skew public opinion in the favor of hidden political interests.  Speaker Boehner should be ashamed that he is once again trying to take money away from those who make the least.  What a despicable man.

Remember it is up to us to make a difference!

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Will the GOP please leave my bedroom?

Is it just me or has anyone else noticed that the party that tells you they are all in favor of smaller government sure seems to have big plans to take more control of our lives, and that is extending all the way into our bedrooms?  Somehow, I just don’t think they are going to be able to do that with less government?

The latest little nugget that blew me away was Santorum saying that we need to be having MORE children. This is the same Rick Santorum who wants to take away health care also wants to take away birth control? Call me crazy, that just does not sound like a really good plan to me. We have people that cannot find jobs, people that cannot feed their families. We have the GOP demanding that social aid programs be cut to the bone and that unemployment be cut off and now this?

Between this latest nonsense and the ongoing yammering of of these candidates going on about overturning Roe V Wade and their belief in who should be allowed to marry whom, well it becomes overwhelmingly apparent that these guys have no intention of reducing the reach of government. This stuff they are talking about enacting would require a far reaching police state to enforce.

And really, think about it, do you really want the United States Government to get into the business of telling you what you can or cannot do with your own body based on the religious beliefs of one subsection of the population?

Sure, its great if that aligns with your beliefs today, but what happens a few elections down the road and we have come to accept the mingling of church and state and you are suddenly in the minority?

Then some new legislation comes along that the majority, or perhaps just the squeaky wheel,  finds perfectly OK but you think is terrible. Now, since we have accepted the mingling of church and state as a precedent this moves right on through as legislation and now you are forced to accept and potentially participate because of this law, even though it conflicts 100% with your beliefs and values.  All because others managed to get it passed into law, even though you know that it should not have been enacted in the first place.

Why should it not have been enacted?  Because the basic tenets of our founding fathers plan, separation of church and state was the right thing to do all along.

However, when it was your religious beliefs being crammed down the throats of others it was great, but when it becomes someone else’s religious beliefs being crammed down your throat, it won’ t be so fantastic.  Thinking things through is a wonderful idea, leaving the thinking to politicians is not a good plan.  They don’t think, they do what they are told to do    ( or paid to do, as is the case of late ).  Be warned, hindsight will be 20/20 in this case, but it will be a bitch to reverse.  We need to take great care when we start demanding reductions in the constitutional rights of people.

I look at what the GOP is saying and doing to our country and see America well on its way to becoming a third world nation. With half of the nation living at or below the poverty level, the Government basically refusing to do anything to protect the people, it is only protecting the wealthy and big business, and now these morons are suggesting that people
should have more children, and the people that want abortions should be prevented from having them? I am at a loss for words, it is insanity. Pure and simple, there is not a single candidate among the GOP field that has the best interests of the American people at heart. The party has lost sight of reality, is catering to a bunch of radical nuts and uber-wealthy who all the money in the world will not be enough for them and are ready to continue using us as their slaves in order to get what they want.

I for one cannot stand idly by and let this happen to our country. We have to get the word out, we have to thoughtfully educate people, there has to be a stop to this madness.  The ideology of the GOP is capitalism. Capitalism and Christianity do not match in any way, shape or form. If we are to have any hope we have to start caring for each other as much as ourselves. We have to demand that our elected officials represent the people not the wealthy, not extremist groups, not corporations.

As FDR said, “I am a Christian and a Democrat, that’s all.”  I will say the same,  I am a Christian and a Democrat, that’s all.

U.S Marines Urinating on Dead Bodies

I have been watching this story unfold for several days and it makes me so very sad.  I may surprise you with what I am going to say, but here goes.

“Shut up, they are doing their jobs the way they were trained to do it.  It is apparent by the quantity of these things that are turning up that this mentality is standard.  So, instead of going after these soldiers why are we not going after the establishments that trained them?  Why are we not going after the heads of these establishments that react with such shock and give the good official responses such as “I find the behavior depicted in it utterly deplorable” or “I condemn it in the strongest possible terms” and then going so far as to say  “Those found to have engaged in such conduct will be held accountable to the fullest extent.”

Guess what my friends, I doubt that we are all of a sudden having an outbreak of soldiers that are taking it upon themselves to treat the enemy with such contempt and to be so comfortable with this activity that they photograph it.  I would dare suggest that this dehumanization of the enemy and subsequent actions, if it were condemned by their commanding organizations, would have photos of the actions making their way onto public internet venues with the offending soldiers faces in clear view.

We, the American civilians should quit acting so damned naive about the whole thing and realize as long as we are willing to engage in war then we will have this very issue of dehumanization of the enemy to contend with.  We need to get off of our soapbox, quit demanding punishment for doing what we have trained these kids to do and perhaps demand more of our leaders.  Perhaps demand alternative methods of war, if it is going to be necessary (and in a GOP world it will be).  Perhaps demand options besides war be chosen as a preferential method for dealing with problems.

First off, for the record, and I’m sure as no surprise to anyone who has read anything I have ever written, I find war to be one of the most unacceptable activities a country can be engaged in.  I have strong opinions about the whole war on terror which I will not even talk about here.  I want to save this for just the issue of these soldiers and their actions.

These men, perhaps boys, who knows how old they really are?  Are in a war zone, they are living in a situation where any moment they could die.  They have been trained to kill people, and to do it without hesitating.

Now, I would like for you to stop and just think about that for a minute.  I don’t mean in a video game sense or movie sense, I mean you and standing face to face with a person and you are going to end their life.  Now, just concentrate on what that might be like.  Go ahead, I’ll give you all the time you need………………………………………………………………….

 

Back?  Ok, Imagine that this person has the same objective, to end your life, so may have to fight them to the death.  Stop and contemplate this.  Really, contemplate the  meaning of this.  Once again, take all the time you need………………………

 

Yeah, me too….it is extremely disturbing isn’t it.  Death is always difficult, but violent, hateful, unnecessary death is more than just terrible.  Words cannot describe the feelings associated when you are involved in a death like this.  Additionally the repercussions of what it will do, not only to you and to them, but to the people in their life and in your life are far reaching.  It is not just a single event.  It is like a stone being dropped in a puddle.  There is a ripple that hits everyone that is part of those peoples lives.

So, lets now shift our focus onto why these soldiers feel that this acceptable behavior.  I mean these men and women are warriors and they have been trained to be what they are.  They did not burst from the womb, finger pointed (since there was no M16 readily available),  ready to kill the first hadji they see.  They joined the military, probably to try to help themselves and to support their families and there they were taught to be killers.  Sure, some probably had a head start, there is always the kid that likes to pull the wings off of butterflies and shoot robins, but we all know that behavior is nurtured in a military environment.  So, regretfully, dehumanization of your target is a necessary byproduct of being trained to be an effective warrior

Of course it is never idea to reveal that you have trained your troops to devalue life to the point that urinating on a dead body and photographing it would be a good idea, but there are costs when you send boys & girls to the military and into war.

Lastly, we should be worried about how to help these men and women cope and rehabilitate should they choose or if they are forced to leave the military, and need to rejoin civilian society.   It is only fair that  we need to be prepared to invest just as much in the decommissioning of our soldiers as we do in the commissioning of them.  It is only fair to them that this would be offered.

I understand that the photographs shown are offensive and people are upset by them.  But come on guys, really?  This is not the first instance and I doubt it will be the last we will see of this.  How about a little concern over the fact that we have a military leadership who obviously is training these soldiers with the understanding that capturing these  grotesque acts of defiling a dead body is a trophy the soldier should be seeking?  The fact that this is being done is nothing new.  One can find pictures dating back hundreds of years of soldiers standing triumphantly over the dead bodies of the enemy.  One can only assume that other, less tasteful, images have probably been taken all along but there just was not a public venue for them at the time.  Now, in the digital age you can load this stuff onto Facebook, You Tube or whatever for posterity in a matter of seconds.  So, here we are.  Now our military leaders face a dilemma of the most difficult kind.  What to do?  We want our soldiers to stay killers, we don’t want to change that program.  We have to answer to all of these civilians who can see what we are doing.  Well, I will tell you what they are doing.  They throwing these kids under the bus right now.  It’s like “A Few Good Men” happening in real life…except its not a Code Red, its the enemy and anyone who cries about it is called un American.  They could possibly be called a terrorist sympathizer.  Look out, NDAA here is what you were made for!!!

I reiterate we need to be looking at our leaders, as a whole.  Not these kids who are only doing what they have been taught.

 

 

 

 

 

Just say NO to the GOP

Why would I care or pay attention you may ask? You thought I was a staunch Democrat? Well, you are correct, I am a believer in the Democratic beliefs, I am right leaning. I care and pay attention to make sure that I am not missing anything that is worth hearing, it is wise to listen to what your opponent says so you are aware of what their plan is so you can combat it. My greatest fear is that people will not vote because they think it doesnt matter and the GOP will take back the Presidency. This would devastate our nation, we see what having a majority of our recent years with GOP rule has done to our country. History is the proof, 20 of the 28 years between 1981 and 2009 the country was ran by the 1%. And in 2008 the global economy came crashing down because all the wealth in the world was not enough for the money grubbing bankers, corporate executives and congress persons. They had to deregulate (i.e. get rid of the rules) so they could take even more money for themselves and leave us holding the tab. Now, the GOP’s “best and brightest” who are out there running for President already have said that they would continue these same policies. I am not ready to let government keep screwing us.

So I watch, and I listen and try to be amused listening to them attempt to debate. (It is far better than crying, thinking about the possibility of one of them getting into office and effing up this country even further.)  Now the calendar is closing in on them so their herd of elephants is thinning out. Of course this always happens in the year of election.
So of course I am going to touch on what I have noticed or think about these candidates thus far. Most of it probably won’t be much of a surprise, I’m nothing if not predictable.

I don’t think it’s much of a surprise that Herman Cain is gone. He was after all, pretty much a flake. I did expect him to last longer than Newt, but I guess his little head overruled his big head too many times in the past and that always catches up with a man when he is running for public office. Hell, Ask Newt, he has a real problem with keeping it in his pants! Cain did make for a good sound byte with “9-9-9” no matter how unfeasible it may have been. Then of course Ms. Bachman announced she was dropping out this week. I am all for a strong female candidate, and she was NOT it. I am glad that she is out of there. I am so tired of seeing that blank stare and her nonsensical ramblings. She is giving female candidates a bad name.  So that leaves the GOP field with Romney, Santorum, Huntsman, Paul, Perry & Gingrich? Have I missed any of them? They are all pretty much the same. My husband argues that Ron Paul is way better, but I take issue with anyone who does not want to care for his fellow man.  Ron Paul is that guy, he does not believe in taking care of his fellow man and that is wrong. Of course in the field of the republicans, he is the least evil if you have to make a choice basing it on the lesser evil.  Looking at the others, you have Romney, he is a businessman. He will take care of corporations. He IS the 1%. Huntsman, he is the same guy as Romney, just not a Mormon. Santorum, the same, but add hypocrite because he claims ethics and morality that he does not practice. Sadly, activities more typical of the majority GOP members as of late than not. Then of course there is Newt. Who, in my opinion is the reincarnation of Napolean. I have never in my life seen anyone that held themselves in such high regard that they would have the audacity to get angry with people questioning them over their transgressions. He is just a douchebag. Last but not least there is Perry. Dear God, George W. Bush 2.0. Except this one may be narcoleptic. The state of Texas has declined further under his watch, education has suffered tremendously, sure he has created a ton of jobs, but they are all LOW WAGE jobs, ones that you cannot support a family on. Additionally, the number of people living in poverty is increasing at twice the national rate, 25% if the population is uninsured, and 18.8% of the families (1 in 5) were unable to feed their families. Add to that he cut firefighters budgets during some of the worst fires in TX history (firehouses were actually buying their own equipment out of their own pockets to fight fires), their executions of questionably innocenct men, and covering up his pedophile appointments to the TX youth commission.

Americans cannot afford nor can we tolerate anymore GOP antics.

These candidates, our elected representatives and especially Speaker Boehner are the embodiment of the unbudging, unwilling, selfish, and childish, stance that the 1% and corporate America represent and are now more than willing to show us. We are clearly witnessing now that they have no interest in representing all of the people and helping everyone and this country.  They show in both their actions and they state clearly in their words that their only interest is in making themselves, their friends money.

If we do not take action to get these people out of positions of power we will be doomed to be their slaves for the rest of our lives and we are also selling our children into slavery as well. They have no problem pissing away the money that our elected officials willingly hand over to them time and time again and saddle us over and over with the bill. The only problem they have is when we start pushing back demanding that government stop giving them the money and that government start taking care of us the way they care for them. Then we see things start happening like OWS protesters being evicted from the parks, NDAA being enacted and news stories being diverted from the truth. The American people already have the attention span of a 2 year old and the memory of a late stage Alzheimer patient.

We have got to do a better job of paying attention to what is happening in our country, who is doing it and making sure we use the tools we have available to us to change things before they are taken away from us. Mark my words, our rights are being taken away from us. There are GOP’ers that are trying to revoke peoples rights to vote so you have to pay attention.

I close with my favorite Reverend Martin Luther King quote of the day “Never forget that everything Hitler did in Germany was legal.”  It is time to JUST SAY NO TO THE GOP!

We will no longer stand for Corporate Welfare & Social Darwinism!!

So, I was reading my email today and was asked to send a letter to my GOP Congressman about what $40 a paycheck means to me since they are still dicking around with the payroll tax cut in the name of trying to cram the Keystone Pipeline down our throats.  The more I thought about it, of course the more pissed off I got.  So, I thought I would share the letter I sent to my congressperson with you.   You too can write to your congress person via the Americans United for Change link http://www.americansunitedforchange.org/page/speakout/40dollars

Here is what I said.  If you like it please feel free to use any or all of it for your letter.  

Dear [Recipient],

$40 a paycheck may not be much for you but for me and my husband, since I became ill it means the difference in buying necessary medication or not.

I do not know how you and the rest of the GOP can stand idly by and call yourselves representing the people of the United States of America. We are suffering, we are poor, we have less than we have ever had in recent history and it is ALL thanks to the policies that the GOP favors. It is time to stop this madness. Read the studies, TRICKLE DOWN ECONOMICS DO NOT WORK.

YOU have been only helping those who do not need any help. YOU are giving our American jobs away, YOU are taxing those of us who cannot afford it more and more and letting those with the most pay less and less, YOU are making healthcare unattainable for most Americans, YOU are making an education unattainable for most Americans, YOU are ensuring that most jobs do not pay a living wage, YOU are propagating a police state in the US, YOU have nearly eradicated the middle class, YOU are killing the America we have known and loved. YOU, are trying to hijack Christianity in the name of Capitalism; EVERYTHING you are doing is wrong, both morally and ethically and you should be ashamed.

You are on notice, we the people are not going to stand by and let you continue your rampant acts of tyranny and treason against the US any longer. We will no longer stand for Corporate Welfare & Social Darwinism, it is past time for you and the others in the GOP to start doing the RIGHT thing for THE PEOPLE that you supposedly represent. We do not want the Keystone Pipeline, we want you to leave Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid alone, to tax the 1%, to make Corporations pay their fair share, and quit trying to piggy back your favor paying legislation on meaningful, needed legislation that will provide relief to the weary and downtrodden American worker. Those of us who are nearly at the end of our rope, due to no fault of our own but due to the negligence of your party for 8 years of favoritism paid to big business and giving us the shaft are sick and tired and demand that you start taking our interests to heart.

Sincerely,

Becky S.

What’s new on Yahoo news…

Romney’s “Blind Trust” just another of the GOP’s use of terms but not really following them to the letter of the law. Surprise, surprise, surprise!

http://news.yahoo.com/mitt-romneys-blind-trust-not-blind-140241848.html

Make no bones about it, Boehner will be back demanding tax cuts for the wealthiest, trying to cram that damn pipeline down our throats again and will be doing it all under the guise of extending the middle class tax break tonight.

http://news.yahoo.com/boehner-house-reject-2-month-payroll-tax-cut-164509165.html

And, last but certainly not least, Newt apparently has played himself out. At least we can hope…his latest rantings have been caputured in one quick clip for the readers pleasure and giggle…yep, he is a real douchebag.

http://news.yahoo.com/newt-gingrichs-unhinged-assault-judiciary-093200823.html

Looking for a tee that speaks your political mind?

Looking for a Tee that represents your thoughts, that speaks your political mind?  Well, if your outlook is like mine, then these Tee’s are the ones for you!

http://www.cafepress.com/OhYeahISaidThatOnlineStore

AND, for every ‘I am the 99%’ shirt purchased I am giving 50% of the proceeds to OWS.

I sure hope you guys like ’em and but a lot!

 

 

 

 

 

The Real Congressional Promise to America

We, the American Congress, promise to represent Corporate America and screw the American People any way necessary in favor of shareholder return and  increasing the wealth of the 1%; We shall do this in return for bribes that shall be called campaign contributions & consulting jobs once we retire from public office.

Union 2.0? Could it be done En masse in the U.S.? We should at least try, because we deserve better!

The concept of Unionization is not bad, what we have in the US has been so corrupted, just as our Government is that it is not a feasible option for those of us who need a vehicle that will allow us a collective voice and the necessary strength to affect change in the workplace.

What we need is Union 2.0, where the program is essentially re-written and we have a new O/S; you know, a Union where leadership is not corrupt, so that the people will trust it and will participate.  I would also say, one that is not so specific to a trade that everyone who may be in need cannot join.  Lastly, I would go so far as to say initially one that is free, or at minimum donation based, so that the inevitable administrative costs could be contained.

I say that because the sad fact is that the people need a vehicle that allows us to collectively have a voice, outside of the so-called elected officials because they are purely owned by special interests, corporations and the military industrial complex. If we are to have any hope of getting the 50% of us that are currently living in poverty out of poverty and preventing the remaining 44% from joining us in poverty then we have to act. That action obviously is going to have to be independent of our elected officials via grassroots movements.

I am fully aware that as of this week, my saying this could be dangerous with the wholesale approval by Congress of NDAA, but we have to do something.  We are at a tipping point in our country, if we stand by waiting for those who are supposedly representing us to do what they are elected to do we all going to be homeless, starving and the U.S. will be a 3rd world country with a handful of people (those in Congress and their cronies) sitting pretty living off the money they made off of us; we are paying for their mistakes and even when we say NO they still do what they want with our tax dollars.  That is NOT representation of the people, by the people for the people.

As Dr. King once said “If we wait for it to work itself out, it will never be worked out. Freedom only comes through persistent revolt, through persistent agitation, through persistently rising up against the system of evil.”

Now is the time, all Americans need to join forces and create a coalition of unified employees so we can demand our equal rights. Employees have less rights than animals in the U.S. And don’t get me wrong. I love animals, but I believe that corporations have a responsibility to not only to the country and their community but also to their employees.

 

50% of AMERICANS ARE POOR OR LOW INCOME ACCORDING TO CURRENT CENSUS RESULTS

Well, sadly we can say “I was there the day the middle class was put on life support” but you and I both know that their health plan will not keep that ventilator going.   According to the current Census results  50% of Americans are now poor or low income.

Guess what, that is only going to get worse, because Congress is doing everything in their power to see to it that America will fail. They are letting Corporations have their way, no matter how wrong it may be, in the name of the almighty shareholder return.

CONGRESS IS RESPONSIBLE FOR LETTING THESE THINGS HAPPEN!!

Jobs have gone by the wayside in favor of profit.

Congress is rejecting the peoples needs for healthcare, tax cuts, social security, medicare, jobs, unemployment, equal rights on the job etc. in favor of their corporate “donors”.

This country is no longer about “We the people”, it’s about “We the corporations”. I am mad as hell, we have to do something about this and we have to do it before its too late!!