TLDR: Oklahoma’s far-right legislative majority is driving our state to hell in a handbasket and right soon.
Tax cuts are NOT the answer: Living wages and more buying power to the working people IS the answer. Funding for education (both common and higher education), public safety, and social services is stagnant and falling in this state, and that’s completely unacceptable.
Mary Fallin’s latest tax cut proposals — hand in hand with her ban on municipalities raising minimum wage and allowing municipalities to determine sick-day benefits for working Oklahomans — is a travesty, designed to make her look great for her overlords at ALEC and Americans for Prosperity (the Koch Brothers), but do absolutely NOTHING for the people of the State of Oklahoma.
Best quote of all is from State Rep. David Dank of Oklahoma City: “The left hand has no idea what the right hand is doing in Oklahoma. It’s absolutely ludicrous. If I handled my business like they do out here, I’d be riding a bicycle to work.”
The USA already uses a market system. Do you know what your global ranking is for health care? 37th. Your health care system is worse than Saudi Arabia’s. So no, using markets for a basic necessity like health care has not been ‘proven’ more effective, certainly not when you have people dying because their insurance won’t pay for their cancer treatments because it’s a ‘pre-existing condition’
Also, giving people free education, food and health care, AKA meeting their basic necessities of life is VERY good for the economy. Or would you like me to point out that in countries they do this, like Canada and Japan are economically much better off and weather economic recessions much better than the USA does or is?
The best way to promote an environment where society can improve is by focusing on the HUMAN BEINGS and making sure PEOPLE do not suffer. The USA has 57.7 million people suffering from a mood disorder. Does THAT sound like a great improvement to society?
And when your ‘economic growth’ is at the cost of human lives, the planet, human suffering, people starving to death… is that realy the society you think is great? How can you call your nation great if you’re willing to encourage the suffering of the poor? If you think CHILDREN should suffer and starve for a few million dollars? I mean if you spent less than a third of what you did on the war in Iraq the USA could have eradicated poverty so tell me, how is it you can support war funding for the ‘economy’ that costs $757.8 billion but not support feeding actual human beings for $500 million?
Please explain what is so great about the USA’s society when you’re willing to sacrifice the health and well being of literally millions of people for a few extra dollars in revenue because I’m definitely not seeing it.
Beginning with one of your tags, I’m not a Christian, so no I don’t need any sort of Jesus. My views aren’t motivated by religion.
Second, if markets cannot efficiently allocate health care, then markets do not work and they cannot allocate anything, and we should nationalize and collectivize our society. In reality our health care system is a dysfunctional one because of poor public policy rather than market forces. There is a lot of literature on the subject you should become familiar with.
Now you’ve made two wrong implications. One, that liberal government giveaways are better for the economy than conservative policies. That’s an easy one. The Reagan economy was the best performing post-war economy. There was a measurable improvement in the health and growth of the American economy as a direct result of Reagan’s pro-growth policies.
The second implication is that economic progress comes at a human cost, and we should prefer government dependency as a solution to problems to avoid such costs. For one, economic growth positively impacts human beings. It’s not the other way around. Human beings depend on a good economy for their future.
Second, public policy is the result of various opposing forces, taking place in the context of numerous limitations, including practical, social, political, and Constitutional. This means that the ability of public policy to actually solve problems is limited. Markets aren’t subjected to any such limitations.
More importantly, a life of government dependency for an able-bodied person is incompatible with a meaningful, virtuous, and productive life. The focus of government in this context should be the promotion of a sort of living that is compatible with those values.
Fundamentally practically trumps good intentions for a reason.
The tags weren’t serious, I was making a joke, so, that aside…
"There was a measurable improvement in the health and growth of the American economy as a direct result of Reagan’s pro-growth policies."
Funny you should say that. Reagan tripled the national debt, national debt was $900 billion when he came to office, by the time he left the national debt had tripled to $2.8 trillion.
He spent billions of dollars funding the Islamist mujahidin Freedom Fighters which are now known as the Taliban, Al Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood.
He cut taxes for the wealthiest 1% -AKA the people with more than enough money to pay taxes- and raised them for the middle and lower classes -the people least able to pay them for seven of the eight years he was in office for a total of eleven tax raises for the people least able to handle these raises.
When he came to office, unemployment was at 7.5%, when he left office it was at 11%.
Please explain how higher deficits, unemployment rates and raising taxes for the people least able to survive and manage those increases was ‘economic growth’? I threw in the fact that he’s the reason Al Qeada exists because he spent billions making Osama Bin Laden instead of, idk, feeding people in his country.
Please site a source for human beings requiring a good economy to be happy, hale and healthy? I believe humans were actually quite well off in North America before there was an economy. Afterwards, not so much, but you may wish to speak to Native American’s for more info on that.
Now finally, I haven’t said anything about ‘government dependancy’. And why do you assume all homeless people are abled? Homeless people are very likely to be suffering from mental illness or addiction, which gets in the way of getting off the street. And if they can’t afford treatment you insist on charging them for the cycle can never be broken. I’m not advocating for people to just be fed by the government, I’m advocating for helping to break the cycle of poverty all together. Which is very doable with actually surprisingly little money.
Money invested in people who can’t even afford to eat because of Reagan’s shitty policies (Sorry but he’s the one who decided trickle-down economics would work and frankly that’s a proven failure), will help. And yes, government regulation is absolutely necessary in a market setting. It’s government regulation that means seven year olds aren’t in sweat shops in working conditions so poor that their life expectancy is to 25. It’s government regulations that mandate pay must be more than just five cents an hour.
A series of IRS documents, provided to ThinkProgress under the Freedom of Information Act, appears to contradict the claims that only Tea Party organizations applying for tax-exempt status “received systematic scrutiny because of their political beliefs.”
A series of IRS documents, provided to ThinkProgress under the Freedom of Information Act, appears to contradict the claims by Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) and his House Oversight and Government Reform Committee that only Tea Party organizations applying for tax-exempt status “received systematic scrutiny because of their political beliefs.” The 22 “Be On the Look Out” keywords lists, distributed to staff reviewing applications between August 12, 2010 and April 19, 2013, included more explicit references to progressive groups, ACORN successors, and medical marijuana organizations than to Tea Party entities.
The IRS provided the heavily-redacted lists to ThinkProgress, after nearly a year-long search. From the earliest lists through 2012, the “historical” section of the lists encouraged reviewers to watch out for “progressive” groups with names like “blue,” as their requests for 501(c)(3) charitable status might be inappropriate. Their inclusion in this section suggests that the concern predates the initial 2010 list.
Explicit references to “Tea Party,” included in the “emerging issues” section of the lists, also began in August 2010 — but stopped appearing after the May 10, 2011 list. From that point on, the lists instructed agents to flag all political advocacy groups of any stripe. The documents instructed the agents to forward any “organization involved with political, lobbying, or advocacy” applying for 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(4) status be forwarded to “group 7822″ for additional review. Groups under both categories are limited in the amount of of lobbying and political activity each can undertake.[read more]
How about that.
The FBI Is Trying to Recruit Muslims As Snitches by Putting Them on No-Fly Lists
Dr Rahinah Ibrahim is not a national security threat.
The federal government even said so.
It took a lawsuit that has stretched for eight years for the feds to yield that admission. It is one answer in a case that opened up many more questions: How did an innocent Malaysian architectural scholar remain on a terrorism no fly-list—effectively branded a terrorist—for years after a FBI paperwork screw up put her there? The answer to that question, to paraphrase a particularly hawkish former Secretary of Defense, may be unknowable.
Last week, there was a depressing development in the case. A judge’s decision was made public and it revealed that the White House has created at least one “secret exception” to the legal standard that federal authorities use to place people on such lists. This should trouble anyone who cares about niggling things like legal due process or the US Constitution. No one is clear what the exception is, because it’s secret—duh—meaning government is basically placing people on terror watchlists that can ruin their lives without explaining why or how they landed on those lists in the first place.
This flies in the face of what the government has told Congress and the American public. Previously, federal officials said that in order to land on one of these terror watchlists, someone has to meet a “reasonable suspicion standard.” That means there have to be clear facts supporting the government’s assertion that the individual in question is, you know, doing some terrorist shit. Which seems like a good idea.
But not any more, apparently.
It seems that, with the exception of a small few, the restaurant owners affected by New York City’s new paid sick days legislation agree with it in principle, not practice.
Food blog Eater surveyed four small restaurant owners in New York City to get their thoughts about the new paid sick days law. Despite overwhelming evidence that points to the positives of the legislation, most of them disagreed with the law.
“Philosophically I completely love the idea of paid sick leave. I love the idea of a living wage,” says Monica Byrne, owner of Home/Made.
But then Byrne goes on to note that while she’s “all for getting us there” she’d prefer to do it “in a sane manner that doesn’t make it impossible for teeny little mom and pop—or mom and mom in my case—businesses to survive.”
In reality, there are thousands of workers and their families are struggling to survive while ill due to inadequate paid sick leave.
“In general I’m not against the law. I think it’s very good, especially for the back of house employees,” said William Tigertt, owner of N.Y.-based Freemans.
He then counters his own claim by noting that, “The way it shakes out, I think it will eventually end up eliminating more jobs as people try to cut back as much as they can, and do more quick service or fast casual concepts where there isn’t as much labor.”
Contrary to Tigertt’s statement, giving employees paid sick days doesn’t have a great financial impact on businesses.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, paid sick days costs employers less than 1 percent of employees average pay.
Still, there were a few restaurant owners who were in favor of the now final law.
James Mallios, owner of Amali, made the decision to give workers paid sick days over a month ago, for both business and moral reasons:
“I used to work at a job where I had sick days, and I didn’t think twice about it. Someone should be able to do that. It doesn’t make them a bad employee, it doesn’t make them a bad person, it just means their priorities are correctly aligned. And on a completely selfish level, in terms of dollars and cents, one of the most under-appreciated assets in the restaurant business is your employees. There’s an amazingly high cost to attrition.”
People like Clinton Gode are challenging state laws that deny Americans with disabilities the right to vote.
"…Arizona is one of 14 states that categorically bar people who are under guardianship or are judged to be mentally "incompetent" or "incapacitated" from voting, according to the Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law. Although all but 11 states have disability-related voting restrictions, laws that impose uniform bans on people who are under guardianship or judged to be incompetent disproportionately target adults with disabilities or mental illness, including veterans with traumatic brain injury, seniors with dementia, and people with autism.”
And yet I never hear ableism being brought up in conversations about voter suppression. Funny how that works.
Ray Moore, Republican candidate for lieutenant governor in South Carolina, would like y’all to get serious and yank your kids out of the godless public schools. Thanks to Raw Story for finding this gem:“It’s our hope and prayer that a fresh obedience by Christian families and educating their children according to biblical commands will prove to be a key for the revival of our families, our churches, and our nation,” said Ray Moore, a retired Army Reserves chaplain and president of Frontline Ministries.
Moore told a gathering of Tea Party activists at the April 12 Liberty Rally that Christians must leave the “Pharaoh’s school system” for religious schools or home schools.
“We cannot win this war we’re in as long as we keep handing our children over to the enemy to educate,” he told the crowd.
I HATE REPUBLICANS
BRAINWASHING HERE HELLO
FBI billboards not about Assata Shakur; it’s about repressing the black community
May 5, 2013
Following the ludicrous announcement that the Obama administration has placed Assata Shakur on its “most wanted terrorist list”, the FBI has erected billboards in Newark, New Jersey announcing its recently increased $2 million dollar reward. However, any critically thinking person knows that these billboards are not about capturing Assata Shakur but sending a message to the rest of us. Interestingly, perhaps just a coincidence or not, Newark, New Jersey is the place where a theater co-owned by Shaquille O’Neil, recently reneged on an agreement to show a popular independent film about the life of another former member of the Black Panther Party for Self Defense, political prisoner Mumia Abu-Jamal.
Is Assata Shakur in New Jersey? No, she is not and the FBI and the Obama administration know exactly where she is, in Cuba where she has lived since being granted political asylum by its government in 1979 after escaping from prison.
This is not about Assata Shakur, it is about sending a message to the Black community and those that live within it who stand up to police violence, oppression and murder of residents, one of the very reasons for the formation of the Black Panthers. It is about the political repression of those who advocate on the behalf of the many political prisons being held by the United States government often in torturous conditions. It is about sending a message to anyone who would take up arms in defense of life, liberty and true freedom in a country that is home to the largest prison population in the world which the federal government and various corporations use as slave labor. It is about sending a message to those that would dare stand up and point out that the US government is the most violent entity on the planet and one that commits acts of terrorism against non-white people and nations on behalf of maintaining the American imperialist status-quo.
Why else would the U.S. government seek to name Assata Shakur as a domestic terrorist after all these decades? We are talking about a woman who was shot twice while attempting to give herself up to police who were co-operating with Federal authorities to target and assassinate or otherwise eliminate members of the Black Liberation movement just as they had done and admitted in a civil lawsuit to doing to Martin Luther King Jr.
The FBI and its corporate media wing fail to report the details of the sham case built against Assata Shakur after failing to win convictions on other trump up charges. The corporate media is failing to point out that a police officer, a state witness against Assata Shakur for the murder of another police officer, has recanted his testimony and admitted to lying on the stand. Medical personnel stated that because of nerves severed by a bullet, Assata Shakur would have been physically prevented from firing a weapon and it was also stated that her wounds indicate her hands were raised when she was shot consistent with her claim that she was giving herself up.
Just as Assata Shakur has pointed out that COINTELPRO utilized and received full cooperation from the corporate media to demonize and alienate freedom fighters from the people who supported them, corporate media today is still fulfilling that role. The concept of a free and independent press in America has always been a fraud and it remains so today.
The relevant question is not how much a CEO contributes to the company. That is not how economics works. After all, how much does the firefighter contribute who rescues three kids from a burning house? We don’t pay our hero firefighters multimillion dollar salaries. We pay firefighters on the basis of how much it costs to hire another firefighter who can also do the job.
The question is how much does the CEO contribute compared with the next person in line for the job? Given the experience of large corporations in other countries, there is every reason to believe that there are lots of next people who could do the job as well or better and for much less.
The CEO/Shareholder dynamic allows for great inequality and has sent many jobs overseas and American factories to their demise.
CEOs are worthless (for the most part)
Jon Stewart tears down Sean Hannity and Fox “News” over their unabashed support of Cliven “I don’t recognize the federal government” Bundy.
"land will be vacant whether or not there’s cattle on it or not"
did we forget about the ENDANGERED TORTOISES
you know the reason why bundy stopped paying the grazing fee???
Gun culture in America: people with guns looking for trouble while not respecting the rights of others and bolstering confrontational lawlessness.
Scofflaws do not need snipers as backup. Campus security should not be attacking peaceful students on their own campus.