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.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Thursday, February 16. 2017
Photo from Bus Stories (lots of photos)
Women over 40 used to let themselves go and look like frumpy old grandmas, over the hill. Cultural change.
California Today: Why Does It Cost So Much to Live in California?
This Robot Could Be the Future of Home Farming
California Governor Spends $25 Billion Per Year On Illegals, Officials Warned Dam Failing 12 Years Ago
CA schools cut protein cuz global warming
"Without Us, Your Country Is Paralyzed" - Undocumented Workers Plan Boycott "Day Without Immigrants"
That word "systemic"
Court OKs Federal Officials Taking Control Of Private Lands To Save Endangered Frogs That Don’t Live There
Dying From a Terrorist Attack Is Different than Slipping in Your Bathtub
Surprise: At the End, Obama Administration Gave NSA Broad New Powers
These are police state powers
Obamacare is in the ICU
President Trump takes first steps to change Obamacare
The White House: Can't Anybody Here Play This Game?
They are amateurs
House committee launches investigation into Donald Trump's security breaches at Mar-a-Lago
Stupid, and amateurs
NATO Responds to Trump
Getting Innovative: Catapult Seized at U.S.-Mexico Border
Tracked: Feb 16, 13:04
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the white house are amateurs story looks like another hit piece, If we wanted professionals we would have voted for Clinton. Glad we didn't.
"They are amateurs"....but then....."NATO Responds to Trump"
So, in terms of national security and defense, where the US seeks implementation of "fair treaty terms"; maybe "amateur" ain't so bad? Sure beats the Bush Crime Family!
(Besides, who listens to a pimp-weasel like Richard Cohen anyway? Has he been right about anything, ever?)
"IRS says they won't really enforce the Obamacare mandate"
There is a glitch in this. If you either owe taxes when you file or owe nothing then the IRS will not levy the fine for not having Obamacare. If you have a refund coming the IRS will withhold that fine from your refund.
"If you either owe taxes when you file or owe nothing then the IRS will not levy the fine for not having Obamacare"
How do you know this for sure? The only official guidance on this applies to no longer rejecting silent returns re: Line 61.
I think we can expect to receive a follow up letter from them asking for us to clarify our household coverage issue and then, a subsequent demand for penalty payment. This year it's a pretty good chunk of change - they're not gonna pass it up.
No, it's actually written into the ACA.
The final language in the Act declared that the penalty "shall be paid upon notice and demand" which sounds really intimidating. The language went on to note that the penalty would be "collected in the same manner as an assessable penalty under subchapter B of chapter 68" which also sounds pretty serious - especially since subchapter B references some pretty nasty penalties for otherwise not complying with other sections of the Tax Code.
So what would the penalty for noncompliance be? Jail time? Nope. The language in the Act specifically rules out jail time, saying at Section 500A(g)(2)(A):
In the case of any failure by a taxpayer to timely pay any penalty imposed by this section, such taxpayer shall not be subject to any criminal prosecution or penalty with respect to such failure.
So, no jail time.
But that means that the IRS will chase you and lien your property if you don't pay, right?
Nope. That's not allowed under the Act. At 500A(g)(2)(B)(i), the Treasury cannot "file notice of lien with respect to any property of a taxpayer by reason of any failure to pay the penalty imposed by this section."
So, no liens.
Then, clearly there will be levies or seizures on your wages and account, right?
Nope. Not that either. Under 500A(g)(2)(B)(ii), the Treasury cannot "levy on any such property with respect to such failure."
To recap then, by law, you have to pay the penalty. But if you don't, you won't go to jail, you won't be liened and you won't be levied for collection.
Is there anything that could happen to you if you choose not to pay? With no jail, no liens and no levies, it doesn't leave the IRS a lot of room to work when it comes to collections. Congress actually managed to create, as I wrote in 2012 and in in 2013, an incredibly complex and burdensome law without any teeth.
Well, maybe some teeth. Baby teeth. The IRS might seize any part or all of your refund in order to satisfy your obligation. Might. IRS hasn't come right out and said that it absolutely will offset your refund if you owe a penalty for failure to pay. However, in the Final Regulations issued on this matter, IRS noted that "[n]othing in this section prohibits the Secretary from offsetting any liability for the shared responsibility payment against any overpayment due the taxpayer, in accordance with section 6402(a) and its corresponding regulations." That's sufficiently passive aggressive, right? You're on notice that the IRS doesn't think that it's barred from taking your refund. They're not saying they will (for certain) but they're not saying they won't either.
Saw the Forbes column when it first was published. Sorry, but can't be comfortable depending on what appears to be ironclad legal language (see recent cases in the news). More interested in real world examples of people refusing to pay penalty. Result?
It's a fair question and I hope my answer is correct. My wife is a tax accountant and when I proudly said that the IRS is no longer fining those who fail to get Obama care she explained to me that they do take the fine if you have a refund coming. I am guessing that whatever they were told to do, i.e. not assess a penalty for failing to show you have qualifying health care on line 61 of your tax form, that this somehow wasn't worded correctly and does not prevent them from "with holding" the penalty from your refund. So as far as I know it is correct the way I described it.
I have the same reaction to that "amateurs" criticism that I do to people upset over Betsy De Vos's "lack of experience." They're confused about what the voters have asked their leaders to be expert in this time around.
Bus Stories. I noticed the ladies were in dresses without exception, and adult civilian men were largely in jacket and tie or jacket with open collar. Very few were smoking. Back then we refrained from dress and conduct that might be offensive to those around us. Dark ages? Yeah, real dark. (Yes, I was old enough to, and did ride cross country busses alone in '43.)
Women over 40 used to let themselves go.... A lot did, a lot didn't. Sixty years later, I could probably still list a dozen or so older women I knew in '43 who had nice figures. I was just old enough to start noticing such things. In the second photo of the link there is a fortiesh lady with a very nice figure. My mother, who was 35 in '43, had a comparable figure and no gray hair. She still had the figure and still had no gray hair when she died in 1980.
My mother did not become grandmotherly in appearance until her mid 70's.
Also, today's women have more time and resources to spend on appearance, not to mention vastly improved hair styling appliances and hair and skin products, along with hours spent working out at the gym.
It's not an apples to apples comparison IMO. Today it is easier for less attractive women to attain a higher level of attractiveness than it was then.
It's been a while since I've read it, but the bus photos make me think of Steinbeck's The Wayward Bus. Everybody has a story.
I don't think the women look much different than woman today, just less fake hair, less makeup, less skin showing, and a lot thinner.
This 'street ' photography is a fabulous window into cultural history. Alas it is now non-existent for future readers because 'privacy' laws and lasers have effectively killed it.
Minneapolis Establishes Transgender Equity Council
I live in Fairfax, VA, and the school board published a transgender policy and they never defined transgender. They did define "sex assigned at birth" as what is written in your birth certificate. I was wondering if the sex assigner gets to take a peek before assigning a baby's sex.
Ah, so leaking private conversation with the President and foreign leaders is okie dokie, but Mar-a-Lago is a crisis? You have to be kidding me!
Former intelligence people are saying that the rouge element in our national intelligence organizations are conspiring to bring down the administration. They have said that it is apparent that the presidents phone conversations are being recorded and mined for something that can be leaked. This has escalated to an insurgency. I hope that there is more going on behind the scenes to identify and arrest the conspirators then it appears. I am afraid that the Democrats effort to become ungovernable are succeeding.
Spelling police to the rescue: Make that ...rogue element.... The rouge element is still soiling it's panties and throwing a hissy fit, a la Chrissie Matthews, Jakie Tapper, Willie Mae Kristol et al.
I hate grammar cops and make it a practice not to "offer" corrections. but this hit my droll nerve.
Rouge element might be accurate if you're talking about the commie rouge element.
I just watched Shepard Smith spend most of an hour trying to prove President Trump is a liar. His number one piece of evidence is the article in the Wall Street Journal claiming that the intelligence community intentionally does not brief Trump on some things because they don't trust him. Not a mention of the fact that this has already been debunked. No 'fair and balanced' reporting only people who opposed Trump spoke. But in fact the Office of the Director of National Intelligence rebuked it publicly. The irony was that Shepard insisted Trump lied and that his accusation of reporters giving out fake news but the opposite was true and Shepard lied and gave out fake news in his attempt to prove Trump wrong.
I didn't see them myself, but I heard that there were any number of meltdowns today over Trump's disrespectful attitude toward the press.
I got news for them. It isn't the Tea Party types that mocked and undermined America's institutions, it was the Left and the media who led the charge. Now that it has caught up with them, they are outraged. So, I ask, why would or should anyone respect the Political class, the Media, Academia or their minions?
How slow do they have to be to not realize that the precedents, they set, may be turned on them.
IdahoBob: I just watched Shepard Smith spend most of an hour trying to prove President Trump is a liar.
Well, the words Trump says are often patent falsehoods, such as his was the largest electoral college victory since Reagan.
"his was the largest electoral college victory since Reagan."
There you go again. Next thing out out your mouth will be "impeach" or "what did he know about the electoral college vote and when did he know it". Do you see at all why this kind of petty accusations show you up to be the crazy alt left Scheiss that you really are.
Did you miss the part about the HUGE lie, i.e. fake news that the WSJ put out there. It wasn't just fake news either, it was a political assassination and you can't even acknowledge it. Seriously, can you look in the mirror in the morning???
IdahoBob: There you go again.
The Electoral College lie is indicative of a widespread pattern of misinformation. Trump doesn't even know his final score in a presidential campaign that lasted over a year.
IdahoBob: Did you miss the part about the HUGE lie, i.e. fake news that the WSJ put out there.
The difference is that the Wall Street Journal is a private entity, and Trump is the U.S. President. Or don't you think it matters when the President tells blatant lies? You can ignore the Wall Street Journal, a division of News Corp; but it's rather hard to ignore the President of the United States.
Your argument is that, because the Wall Street Journal published fake news, it's okay for Trump to lie, or it doesn't matter somehow.
Zack amusing asked "don't you think it matters when the President tells blatant lies?"
No, not after 8 years of Obama telling lies.
Hank_M: No, not after 8 years of Obama telling lies.
Of course it matters. It mattered when Obama didn't tell the truth. And it matters when Trump doesn't tell the truth. Understand that we are now entering the post-truth era. If you are truly conservative, then you should resist this, for if there is any traditional value that is worth preserving, then it is truth.
"It mattered when Obama didn't tell the truth."
No, it didn't. If you're so concerned about the truth, start holding your own accountable and show us how it's done.
Hank_M: No, it didn't.
Of course it mattered. When Obama was less than truthful, such as oversimplifying aspects of the Affordable Care Act, it undermined his credibility.
Idaho: The irony was that Shepard insisted Trump lied
Yes, Trump lied — not to mention his really strange interactions with Jake Turx an Orthodox Jewish reporter for Ami Magazine, and April Ryan and African American with American Urban Radio Networks.
As for Shepard Smith, “Your opposition was hacked and the Russians were responsible for it and your people were on the phone with Russia the same day it was happening and we're fools asking the questions. No, sir, we're not fools for asking this question and we demand to know the answer to this question. You owe this to the American people," is a very reasonable point.
Idaho: Not a mention of the fact that this has already been debunked.
It's not been debunked, but denied. However, it's quite possible the story is wrong, and that the sources had an ulterior motive, or that the information was incomplete. That doesn't make it fake news, or the Wall Street Journal fake news.
"Yes, Trump lied"
Did you read what I wrote? " His number one piece of evidence is the article in the Wall Street Journal claiming that the intelligence community intentionally does not brief Trump on some things because they don't trust him."
This was not true. Simple as that. The WSJ lied and Shepard Smith lied. That was my point.
"his really strange interactions with Jake Turx an Orthodox Jewish reporter for Ami Magazine"
Not his really strange question but his really strange interaction. The classic "have you stopped beating your wife" question that no matter how you answer it cana be spun into a negative in a headline. It seems that if you don't take the bait that too can be spun into a negative headline. But wait! That is EXACTLY what the fake media is all about. You don't see it but everyone else does. This was the fake media trying to get Trump to say something that could be twisted against him and your complaint is that Trump didn't bite. So therefor is must be a "strange interaction".
IdahoBob: This was not true.
That has not been established. Trump had his political appointee deny the story, but that doesn't mean there hasn't been resistance or a work slowdown in the intelligence community. Perhaps the Wall Street Journal, which is owned by News Corp. the parent company of Fox News, will follow up with additional information or sources.
IdahoBob: The WSJ lied and Shepard Smith lied.
That's certainly not the case. Perhaps the sources lied or were mistaken. You might argue the original reporting was flawed or inadequate.
IdahoBob: The classic "have you stopped beating your wife" question that no matter how you answer it cana be spun into a negative in a headline.
What? The reporter, Jake Turx, a reporter for an Orthodox Jewish publication, prefaced his question by stating "I haven’t seen anybody in my community accuse either yourself or anyone on your staff of being anti-Semitic." Turx's question, which he never actually got to ask, was about the response of the government to the rise in anti-Semitic attacks. Instead of answering, Trump cut the reporter off, told him to "Sit down", then called him a liar.
Illegal aliens (using the correct term here) plan to boycott work for a day.
Good, I'd like to know which businesses hire the illegal aliens so I know which places to NOT do business with myself.
charles: Illegal aliens (using the correct term here)
In English, that is not the correct term. You don't say Joe is an illegal because he robbed a bank. Rather, you say Joe committed an illegal act.
One might well say he is an illegal bank customer. Or that an unlicensed doctor is an illegal doctor. Illegal alien is a correct term in English, as illegal modifies alien quite clearly and accurately. Even calling someone "an illegal" as a shorthand is correct, if in the context it is known what that ambiguous term refers to. This is how common words develop and change all the time.
The term is now politically incorrect, "undocumented" being preferred. I suspect that has influenced your desire to find fault with the English expression.
Assistant Village Idiot: One might well say he is an illegal bank customer.
No one ever says that. But you are correct that some people do use derogatory language when referring to people who are undocumented.
Zachriel, angel of memory and wikipedia, perhaps you would prefer the phrase border-jumping criminal.
Jack Walter: Zachriel, angel of memory and wikipedia, perhaps you would prefer the phrase border-jumping criminal.
If someone came across with their parents when they were two years old, would you call them a border-jumping criminal?
Only by proxy. He would be in violation of the law, but it's the parents who are making the choice. And I don't blame them for making the choice, by the way. But, that doesn't mean we shouldn't enforce immigration laws and send them back home.
Jack Walter: He would be in violation of the law
It's illegal to cross the border without permission, but not illegal to simply exist in the U.S. As someone who was 2 years old when brought to the U.S. was not culpable, they haven't broken any laws.
Jack Walter: But, that doesn't mean we shouldn't enforce immigration laws and send them back home.
So you would send someone away who has no memory of any country but the United States.
NO! But I would do the humane thing and send them home when I found them here through no fault of their own. And if they had been here for a number of years I would bill their home country for the schooling, medical care and any welfare we spent on them. That would only be right.
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