We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
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Thursday, October 20. 2011
As the Left leads America deeper and deeper into a welfare state in which we take money from our neighbors to pay for our personal responsibilities and to cover our losing risks (after government takes its hefty cut, of course), I found this proposal amusing: Free Diapers
At the risk of pissing off most of our readers, I would assert that anyone benefiting from unemployment, mortgage interest deductions, Medicare, Medicaid, food stamps, government pensions, Social Security, welfare checks, disability, SSI, etc etc is in diapers.
I am sick of that old "I paid into it" line. Maybe you were fooled into thinking you did, but you did not. I never hear any gratitude from the recipients, just endless demands for more money to be extracted from the shrinking pool of taxpayers - who I term "neighbors" because that is who they are.
They told you that you did, that you did pay into it and deserve it, and they told you that fiction so you would feel entitled to it and eternally grateful to "government" - not to your neighbor - for supplying it. However, you did not pay into "it." There is no "it" there, to distort Gertrude Stein. There is no money there, waiting to be used. It's just all borrowed from the Chinese, who will soon own the USA as a semi-dysfunctional subsidiary - a "distressed asset."
We Americans should be ashamed of ourselves, or at least own up to our condition in which dependency has become socially and politically acceptable instead of being viewed as charity. It's not the way our tough ancestors lived, and mine led fine, honorable, sacrificial, difficult lives as far as I know, without expecting anything from anybody except spouse, family, and neighborly helping. Good lives, no mooching.
In America, they put you into diapers, sooner or later, whether you want the freebies or not. Most people welcome the freebies, because, however undignified, it's human nature and we want to convince ourselves that we are entitled to it, somehow, to rationalize our sponging off of others and to reduce the shame of dependency in adulthood. I suppose I would accept the money too were I in dire straights, but I would not feel good about it because I would know that it is taken from my neighbor - not voluntarily, but by force. That's the plan - a nation of dependents. It might be the European Way, the Serfdom Way, but I do not think of it as the American Way.
All of this weakens our people, our nation, our spirit, and our backbone. It is designed to do that. It is a political strategy.
It's a shame Ron Paul is such a (partial) nutjob. A shame that Cain doesn't know what he is talking about, compared with your average Maggie's reader.
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I personally feel that the positives of Ron Paul far out-weigh the negatives. I have donated to his campaign.
I think he gets the "nut job" label from the mainstream press, but he is the only candidate with the potential to save the country. I urge you to go to his website and read the position papers. He gives me hope.
Every other Republican candidate, in my opinion, will continue the US on the road to serfdom that you describe here, so well.
I never catch Paul being a nut.
Maybe I'm not looking hard enough.
But, given where we're at w/ all the sane, staid candidates, maybe we ought to consider Billy Joel's words appropriate for the 2012 election.
I have been one of those who has whined that I paid into it (SS) so I should get mine out. Even as I head toward my 60s, I am no starting to reconsider what that means. The fact that a lot of politicians lied to me (and you - but what else is new) is starting to become more important than "getting mine". As NJ says, there is nothing there to call "mine". Social Security is just a ruse to fund more things that are fun for politicians (one of those things is giving money away).
Yeah, I want the SS money that was promised to me, but I think what is more important is that we minimize the idea government should be allowed to take our money to benefit somebody else or even benefit ourselves.
If we want to alleviate other's suffering or destitution, we should do it ourselves, not by government force - which is really a way of getting somebody else to pay for your "good" idea.
I do resemble your remarks, NJ.
As someone who has benefited from the mortgage interest deductions all of my adult life (which I believe is as much a subsidy to the construction industry as it is a vote-buying ploy), I can say that I would live in a more modest dwelling - or rent - without that so-called benefit. In fact, it makes paying off a house a financially dubious thing to do.
I have, happily, not partaken of any of those other "entitlements" thus far in life.
"In fact, it makes paying off a house a financially dubious thing to do."
I don't understand what you are saying here. Most people don't pay down their mortgage because (1) they don't have the money to do so, or (2) they see their home as a relatively short-term investment, and a mortgage allows them to leverage the money they invested by making a small down payment. They hope their real property will appreciate over the short-term and can be sold for a profit. With sufficient leveraging, even a small percentage rise in the market value of a home will yield a large profit as a percentage of a small down payment.
For those who expect to live in a mortgaged home over the long haul, I say paying or not paying down the mortgage depends for the most part on the after-tax cost of the mortgage versus the after-tax income earned from investing the outstanding balance on the mortgage in an alternative financial vehicle. If the money you earn (after taxes) on the money you borrowed is a good deal more than your (after tax) borrowing costs, then by all means keep your mortgage. Eventually you will have paid down your mortgage AND have accumulated a net savings. On the other hand, if your mortgage costs consistently exceed your investment gains, if you have the cash, and if you don't expect to need it for some other purpose in the near future (e.g., to buy a new car or to send your kids to college), then retire your mortgage.
We are on track to pay off our mortgage in about three years. We have been in the house for three years. I paid off my first house in eight years. I do not see the point in paying $1 to save a quarter. Yes, I understand the investment argument, but I would rather own my house and not have any debt. I resent my taxes being higher to subsidize the deduction.
One is only in diapers to the extent they rely upon the “free” stuff doled out by gov’t. If some well-intentioned person steals a box of diapers from an evil rich parent and wants to give them to me, I would be foolish not to take the gift. That’s BD’s out for taking the mortgage deduction: if conditions were different, so would be everyone’s choices. As long as I know it is a gift, not a right, and see the blood that comes with accepting stolen goods, I am open to work the system for all it is worth.
Pining about an incorrupt system is like wishing there were no gravity.
At the same time, I assuage my moral sense by both speaking and working to end the handouts I enjoy. It would be hubris for me to deny the majority their assessment of my neediness. But I can work toward changing the majority opinion.
I think to demonstrate your sincerity on the matter that you refuse to accept any Social Security payments when you become eligible.
How old are you, News Junkie, dearie? This old Boomer lady thinks maybe you should get a few more decades of life's little ups and downs under your belt before you start lecturing anybody about wearing diapers.
It appears that the demonization of Reagan, W, and Sarah Palin have had a possibly desired effect: To discourage everyone on the right who wants power for the right reasons.
I must disagree. Merely because our professional thievery class (Congress) decided to blow the money that was paid in for SSI and Medicare doesn't make it any less true that they owe it back to the payers. Just like a pension plan that went bust, the money was owed to the workers. Financial malfeasance by the company doesn't change that fact. It doesn't matter what gov't blew the money on, whether they overspent elsewhere, whether they borrowed more. It is still a debt obligation, no different than the Treasuries sold to China.
Now, I've read that current benefit levels will cause current recipients to receive significantly more than they paid in. (Hard to believe that after 60+ years the system still isn't demographically sound! What an indictment of the people who decide the level of benefits.) If, after allowance for inflation and a reasonable return on investment, that turns out to be true, then I'll agree that some portion of those kinds of payments qualify for your "diaper" judgment.
I'm sorry you're sick, and pray for a rapid recovery.
I intend to continue taking my SS retirement checks until I've recovered every penny of money that was withheld at the maximum rate every year since I was sixteen (a half-century ago). I would have preferred keeping the money and investing it myself, but I was given no choice.
I am signed up for Medicare because I was told I must. I derive no benefit from it, as I buy health insurance for my wife and myself.
I make no apology for taking my Marine Corps retired pay; consider it delayed compensation for those 412 combat missions in the Vietnam War.
Each of these "benefits" is actually a contractual obligation. I voluntarily entered into the contracts in good faith, did my part, and expect the other party (government, or if you prefer, YOU) to uphold their end of the deal. The fact that YOUR agents (who also pretend to be mine) has mismanaged the business does not invalidate contractual obligations. Grow up.
I knew it would piss people off. The government promises things they cannot deliver, in reality, to get votes and to make people depend on them.
It is a scam. I don't blame people for taking their checks but I believe, in the big picture, that this system is bad for the nation and it is not going to be sustainable.
Yup, that's our congresschick Rosa in action. I sure hope they don't buy the cheap ones that leak all over. I doubt it. Since when has our gummint ever wasted money on cheap stuff, when they can waste it on expensive stuff?