Archive

Monthly Archives: November 2012

If you were a child in the 50’s through the 80’s, you probably watched Wile E. Coyote (geeeenius) try to catch the Roadrunner with all manner of ill-conceived products made by ACME. The ACME name was prominently displayed on all kinds of stuff. Rob Loukotka, an artist from Chicago, watched every single Roadrunner cartoon, and drew all 126 ACME products on a poster. Here’s his Kickstarter promotional video:

And here’s an image of the poster. Click the image to see his Kickstarter project page.

Jerry Gorski runs an engineering company. In this video produced by the House Majority Whip, he says “This notion that $250,000 being the top 2% or the wealthy people in America ignores the way most small businesses work in America.” Raising taxes on the Jerry Gorskis of America isn’t going to solve our problem. In fact, no taxation scheme the Democrats can come up with will solve our problem, because it’s not a revenue problem; it’s a spending problem. If you went so far as to confiscate the wealth of all of America’s billionaires, it wouldn’t cover even one year’s budget deficit. Then, of course, there wouldn’t be any left to cover the next year’s deficit.

But then, President Obama and the Democrats aren’t really concerned about solving our fiscal problems. This is really all about “fairness” and retribution.

It would be funny if it weren’t so sad. Sure, you pay your own way, but when you lose $15.9 BILLION in one operating year, who closes the gap? The federal government doesn’t give direct subsidies to the Post Office anymore, but somebody has to lend them the money to continue to operate. The delivery of mail needs to be privatized, so that market forces can determine what it costs to deliver first-class mail, and what sort of benefits will be received by the people who deliver it.

The head of the financially struggling U.S. Postal Service said the agency must be allowed to ease the terms of prepayments into a retiree health-care fund and eliminate general mail delivery on Saturday.

Patrick Donahoe told “CBS This Morning” the agency isn’t asking Congress for money.

He said, “I think most people don’t realize, we’re 100 percent self-sufficient. We pay our own way.” But the postal chief notes the agency is losing $15.9 billion this year.

Donahoe says the post office needs to refinance retirement health fund payments to $1 billion a year instead of $5 billion.

He said the Postal Service would continue package delivery on Saturday and keep post offices open. In this scenario, he says the agency could be $8 billion in the black each year.

Of course – just forestall all those obligations until some later date, and show a profit in the short run. That fixes everything.

You’d think they’d have a better rate, considering they spend almost $30,000 per pupil each year. That money must be going for something beside classroom instruction. You think this will dampen the argument that we need to spend even more on education? Think again.

Washington, D.C., had the worst high school graduation rate in the country in 2011, according to state-by-state statisticsreleased Monday by the U.S. Department of Education.

Only 59 percent of high school students who started as freshmen in the 2006-2007 school year graduated four years later from District of Columbia schools, according to the data, which details state four-year high school graduation rates in the 2010-11 school year.

That compares with a 76 percent rate during 2009-2010.

There were 71,284 students in 191 schools in the District of Columbia, which is not a state but comprises the nation’s capital city. The district received $98.3 million dollars in federal funding during 2011.

Second from the bottom is Nevada, the home state of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), with a 62 percent graduation rate.

From CNS News

Tyler Durden at Zero Hedge has an interesting -and troubling-article about the state of the Welfare State in America. It’s not pretty. Part of it addresses the fact that it’s now more advantageous for folks in some income ranges (up to $69,000) to get government benefits than it is to actually work and pay taxes. You can see that here.

The part of the article that gets me is the chart called “Tax Burden on Wealth Producers” that shows the number of privately employed persons against the number of people on welfare, and those working for the government (remember – all those government jobs are paid for by the taxes of the privately employed persons). It looks like this:

But perhaps the scariest chart in the entire presentation is the following summarizing the unsustainable welfare burden on current taxpayers:

  • For every 1.65 employed persons in the private sector, 1 person receives welfare assistance
  • For every 1.25 employed persons in the private sector, 1 person receives welfare assistance or works for the government.
  • The punchline: 110 million privately employed workers; 88 million welfare recipients and government workers and rising rapidly.
Can this sort of arrangement go on for much longer? As the Instapundit says: Something that can’t go on forever, won’t.

UPDATE: Here’s an example of the kind of evasive behaviors folks will engage in when faced with the prospect of higher taxes: Costco to Pay Special $3 Billion Dividend. This will allow holders of Costco stock to pay the 15% dividend tax rate before it goes up next year (nearly double for some brackets).

People with means will do what they must to avoid being dunned by higher tax rates. England provides an excellent example. Instead of increasing revenue to the treasury, the higher tax resulted in two-thirds of millionaires disappearing, and revenue went down – significantly.

In the 2009-10 tax year, more than 16,000 people declared an annual income of more than £1 million to HM Revenue and Customs.

This number fell to just 6,000 after Gordon Brown introduced the new 50p top rate of income tax shortly before the last general election.

The figures have been seized upon by the Conservatives to claim that increasing the highest rate of tax actually led to a loss in revenues for the Government.

It is believed that rich Britons moved abroad or took steps to avoid paying the new levy by reducing their taxable incomes.George Osborne, the Chancellor, announced in the Budget earlier this year that the 50p top rate will be reduced to 45p from next April.

Since the announcement, the number of people declaring annual incomes of more than £1 million has risen to 10,000. However, the number of million-pound earners is still far below the level recorded even at the height of the recession and financial crisis.

Last night, Harriet Baldwin, the Conservative MP who uncovered the latest figures, said: “Labour’s ideological tax hike led to a tax cull of millionaires. Far from raising funds, it actually cost the UK £7 billion in lost tax revenue.

via Two-thirds of millionaires left Britain to avoid 50p tax rate – Telegraph.

Note: It’s sad, but I found myself debating whether to post this, as I’ll probably be seen as racist by some folks for bringing it up.

Or, should it really matter? Apparently, it does matter in Jesse Jackson Jr’s Chicago-area district. Black leaders there are lamenting the number of black candidates for Jackson’s seat, afraid that the black vote will be split among them, and the one white candidate will sneak away with a plurality. Can you imagine someone saying “we can’t afford to lose a white voice in Congress?” Does it really matter what race a Congressional representative is, so long as they represent the interests of their constituents?

Black leaders are growing increasingly worried that a white candidate might seize the seat of former Democratic Rep. Jesse Jackson in the upcoming Illinois special election.

With a host of black candidates announcing their intention to seek the seat, the concern is that they could split the African-American vote and provide a plurality to a white contender. The worries escalated this week after former Rep. Debbie Halvorson, a white Democrat and veteran of suburban Chicago politics, threw her hat into the ring.

Losing Jackson’s seat would be a blow to the black establishment. Chicago, long a center of black cultural and political power – it’s the home of the nation’s first black president, Barack Obama, and the first black member of Congress, Oscar De Priest – would see its delegation in the Congressional Black Caucus diminish from three seats to two. And there’s Jackson background as the son of iconic civil rights leader Rev. Jesse Jackson.

Jackson’s district, which he was elected to in 1995, contains a small majority of black voters.

via Blacks fret free-for-all for Jesse Jackson Jr. seat – Alex Isenstadt – POLITICO.com.