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Archive for Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Middle class trend

February 22, 2006

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To the editor:

Almost every morning I find in this space another letter expressing outrage about President Bush. Without comment on the merits, I note that the man is a lame duck and unimpeachable given his party's majorities. More importantly, I believe there to be serious unexplored issues.

Each passing year exposes data that show that more of the nation's wealth is concentrated in fewer hands. Income for the middle class has been stagnant for a decade while the top few percent see double digit increases. Our tax levies extract a nearly proportional toll from the middle class and the super rich. The concept of personal responsibility justifies cuts in aid to the less fortunate, ignoring our broader responsibility to others. Longstanding middle-class programs are labeled unsustainable while we squander the monies already collected to fund them. Higher-income, skilled work moves offshore while we laud millions of new low-paying service jobs. We import cheap labor rather than pay our own unemployed citizens a living wage.

Where is the outrage at these trends? Should we not be challenging all our leaders to reverse them? Are we so distracted by bashing Mr. Bush that we are blind to the accelerating erosion of the middle class? Let's hear some outrage!

George Lippencott,

Lawrence

Comments

rightthinker 8 years, 1 month ago

I'm really hurt, Defender. Now you've made me get all introspective and stuff.

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Defender 8 years, 1 month ago

Nope, just accusing you of being yourself.

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rightthinker 8 years, 1 month ago

".....mislead others with your little assumptions and lies. "

Now it sounds like you're accusing me of being a liberal.

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Defender 8 years, 1 month ago

Wow, rightthinker, and you accuse me of having a problem. You're the one that seems to have extreme emotional reactions that lead you to mislead others with your little assumptions and lies. If you could just be straight up honest, then it would be worth debating with you. But no, this is not something you can achieve. You have to do small things like imply others use of drugs for mental stability, or make fun of thier posting name, or make rash judgements about large groups of people just because they disagree with you, etc. I could go on and on about your tactics, but I think everyone here has the ability to see how you try to distort and imply in an attempt to discredit the ideas of others.

If you look back through any of our 'debates', I think you will find that I have never assaulted your character without provocation. Not once have I attacked you without being attacked by you first. Sorry, that's just the facts rightthinker.

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rightthinker 8 years, 1 month ago

Yourbestwetmare:

"I'm not an economist"

Then shut up then with your blather.

"It also looks like the short and long term interest rates might flip-flop, which is very unusual and usually indicates a recession (or so I am told). Please correct me if I have gotten these facts wrong."

So what's new.

You have called me an idiot no less than several dozen times....big deal. And who's "we"?

Give me the data and specifically relate it to how I'm an idiot too while your pea-brain is operating. I don't want opinions. Get to work pal.

Let me help you with your tunnel vision angle on this:

THERE HAS ALWAYS BEEN AND WILL ALWAYS BE A MIDDLE CLASS!!!!

"I don't know ............ "middle class", but it seems .........our economy is artificial. Middle class lifestyles without middle class incomes."

That's an understatement, the "I don't know" should be your posting handle.

It has been proven that if you distribute wealth like liberals are salivating to do, the money would be back into it's original hands in a very, very short period of time.

Get off your soapbox and go ahead and entertain your infantile mind by repeatedly calling me and idiot.

"It is also true that wealth has become concentrated at the highest end, and not spread out among many. In this sense I might agree that the middle class is disappearing, but liberal spending habits are delaying the recognition of it."

You could fool me, but I thought I was reading the writings of Karl Marx.

Yourbestwetmare---you are a class act buffoon.

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yourworstnightmare 8 years, 1 month ago

rightthinker,

We've been over this. We've already proven that you are an idiot. Do we have to go back and rehash the data that prove you are an idiot (although there is yet more on display here today)?

I must admit, though, one of your posts today was quite reasonable and measured. That second synapse must been a-firin'.

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yourworstnightmare 8 years, 1 month ago

I am not an economist, but I understand that there are "oddities" about the current economy which trouble some in the know.

For the first time in a very long time, Americans are in an average savings deficit (spending more than they are earning, let alone saving any). Spending beyond means is not unusual in individual circumstances. What is unusual is that the average savings is negative.

It also looks like the short and long term interest rates might flip-flop, which is very unusual and usually indicates a recession (or so I am told). Please correct me if I have gotten these facts wrong.

I don't know how these factors relate to the "middle class", but it seems that the strength of our economy is artificial. Middle class lifestyles without middle class incomes.

It is also true that wealth has become concentrated at the highest end, and not spread out among many. In this sense I might agree that the middle class is disappearing, but liberal spending habits are delaying the recognition of it.

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rightthinker 8 years, 1 month ago

'The reason the poor and middle class vote for republicans sometimes is that they have been hoodwinked into believeing that the GOP leadership cares about them, their families and their morals'

BunE--This may be true but they took that right out of the Dems handbook of how to get minorities, primarily blacks, to vote for them.

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rightthinker 8 years, 1 month ago

Oh boy Defender---you're flipping out. You've assaulted my character, called me an idiot countless times and I don't care. Do you have a self-esteem issue or are you goofing on me? If you're not goofing on me, then get a life, really. Of course my joke is not at all fact, it's all BS and anyone can see that. What is wrong with you?

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BunE 8 years, 1 month ago

The democrats are as much to blame as the republicans however, at no time in history has so much power been vested in government, especially the executive branch. You all can support the 'dub as much as you want, but sooner or later there will be a democrat in the white house and (s)he will have all that power and it is a fact that the republican party will manufacture some sort of smear (Whitewater anyone?) the fact remains that they will reap what they sow.

Now, on to the really important things. The reason the poor and middle class vote for republicans sometimes is that they have been hoodwinked into believeing that the GOP leadership cares about them, their families and their morals. They have used the "Abortion" and "TRR-ism" platittudes to get everyone all lathered up so they can maximize shareholder value while real wages decline. "Activist Judges" are figments of the imagination unless you note that a conservative judge may get "active" to overturn Roe. "Death Tax" this little white lie doesn't apply until 5 million and a good accountant or lawyer makes it all go away. Doesn't impact the small farmer or business man at all. Yet this is a cornerstone of our longterm tax plan? Do the Hilton girls sleep over at the Lincoln BR?

The republicans have framed the argument and continue to whine about liberals and democrats in order to demonize them. They can feel their time slipping away...

The best part is watching the ridulous leaders of the GOP say "you see, liberals..." and then to watch all of you ditto heads drop it on us like it was some sort of gospel.

The middle class drives this economy. They are not getting richer and richer, they are losing clout. Their APR's will soon be heading north, the house they bought at a great introductory rate is stagnating in value, and that tax cut last year amounted to about dinner and movie. These are the people that buy the crap that keeps this economy cookin'. As the middle class goes, so goes America.

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Defender 8 years, 1 month ago

rightthinker:

"I think Dems already have blamed Bush for everything, including poor driving conditions in Lawrence, the fact that Wal-Mart is out of duct tape etc, the weather, the fact their constipated etc etc."

This is all fact? No. So that makes it a lie. As far as how thin my skin is, well, that really isn't any of your business. Implying that I have to use medication to remain calm is also another one of your lies.

You do not know anything about my personal life, and yet you are trying to make others believe that I have some type of behaviorial issue that requires medication. See, this is where your outright dishonesty shows for all to see. Instead of just owning up to your lies, you attempt to smear me.

By all appearances, you are a pathological liar, and yet I have not suggested that you get any type of help for your affliction. These are the differences between us rightthinker, you tell lies, I refute them, you call names, I refuse to lower myself to your standards, you imply others are on medication just because they stand up to you, and I merely prove you incorrect every single time.

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rightthinker 8 years, 1 month ago

Oh come, come Defender---telling lies?? You gotta be smarter than that and have a better sense of humor. You seem a bit thin-skinned. May I suggest upping your lithium a bit?

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Defender 8 years, 1 month ago

rightthinker:

"Ok, rant over and Defender--it was a joke, unless your constipated today and grumpy get over it."

No, it isn't a joke. Once again it is one of your pathetic attempts to make others look bad by telling lies about them. Intentionally misleading comments say a lot about your character.

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mefirst 8 years, 1 month ago

my gosh rightthinker--I agree with virtually EVERYTHING you're saying!

I get equally as frustrated with dems as I do repubs. They're both out for the power grab, and the American worker/family gets the shaft. That's what makes me angry.

I agree...concentrate on the U.S.!

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rightthinker 8 years, 1 month ago

"It completely baffles me that some of the poorest people in this country support this administration."

Mefirst, the Republican party also gets the lions share of corp donations.

I makes me furious when the gov bails out the airlines---my wife flies two-three times a week and me prob at least 8-10 times a year and the planes ain't empty I'll assure you. Hey, if corporate fat-a* bosses can't figure it out, don't go crying to the government. They blamed 9-11 for years of mis-management...come on, us common folk arn't that dumb. The labor unions don't help much either though, but why after de-reg all this. The whole system is in the shtter.

I know I stick up for Bush, but the relentless attacks are, well, relentless. Both parties are at fault. But, honestly we need to start distancing ourselves from trying to intercede with the Arabs/Isreal constantly. With the Iran situation and Hammas bizarre coming of power, and Iraqis just arn't catching on to this democracy craze (I say that jokingly) we need to concentrate on this country, our problems, the border, welfare, the deficit, oru nat'l security, OUR INTELLIGENCE!!! Our Intelligence reminds me of the movie "The Naked Gun". How much more bumbling can be done with intelligence. Thirld world countries "out-intel" us ten times over, using native peasants!!! During Vietnam, the Viet Cong literally knew the names of our operatives before their boots hit the ground!!!

There needs to be a concerted effort to strengthen our intel, our infrastructure, our economy, no more farming out overseas, clean up the border and start strengthening our military, from the ground up. Hell, we're in a war already with ourselves; social woes, crime, racial tension, drugs up the wazoo, corrupt politics beyond comprehension, broken social security, personal debt in record numbers, everybody is tapped out, record oil prices (and where it comes from is twice as disconcerting).

If anyone can't agree we're running on "fumes" so to speak---they need to wake up.

Ok, rant over and Defender--it was a joke, unless your constipated today and grumpy get over it.

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Defender 8 years, 1 month ago

rightthinker:

"I think Dems already have blamed Bush for everything, including poor driving conditions in Lawrence, the fact that Wal-Mart is out of duct tape etc, the weather, the fact their constipated etc etc."

Got any proof of this? No? Hmmm, lying again. I thought that rightthinkers would obey the Holy Bible and refrain from lying. Apparently not. You really shouldn't lie, it makes you a liar.

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Todd 8 years, 1 month ago

What does middle class mean these days? For example how much money do you have to earn in Lawrence to be middle class? Where do middle class people in Lawrence live?

My stab at it: these days middle class is sending your kids to preschool/daycare, 2 cars, newer house with 2000+ sq.ft., some vacation budget, some retirement savings, entertainment money, and a bunch of newish stuff. (dvd, mp3 players, clothes, etc...)

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Richard Heckler 8 years, 1 month ago

He 's right. George W. Bush cannot do so much damage to economy by himself. It's the republican party and a few democrats who actually control what can be done. Considering who is the majority as we week it's the republican party who is allowing " Reckless Spending George" to carry on as he does. Party line voting has little merit. More than "Reckless Spending George" it is the republican party.

This is the party that complains about big goverment yet gladly accepts paychecks and sticks around in order to accept very nice retirement plans. Forbid anyone else to retire so comfortably with built in cost of living increases complete with medical care not medicare.

Is it time to replace the republican party...you bet. Pay attention and pick the new choices wisely. The party choice may be the wrong one. There is a lot a baggage on both sides of the aisle.

Primary elections are equally as important as the general perhaps more so if you cherish democracy.

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mefirst 8 years, 1 month ago

The outrage is palpable, though some are in complete and utter denial. I am outraged and have been for some time. Forget Bush Co., my outrage is directed at those who elect and defend people like Bush/Cheney at their own peril.

I'm from southeastern Ohio, one of the poorest parts of this country. When I go home to visit loved ones, I see Bush/Cheney signs and stickers everywhere. It completely baffles me that some of the poorest people in this country support this administration. Why do they support it? Abortion, gay issues, war, and contempt for people on "welfare. The funny thing is that most of these folks are reliant, in some way, shape or form, on public assistance. We all are. No one in this country is 100% independent of the government.

I used to work in a VA homeless shelter and residential drug treatment facility. This guy (a client) would always talk about his contempt for people who relied on the government for assistance. This guy did not have two sticks to rub together and failed to realize that by using the VA services, he was RELYING on the government for assistance. HELLO!!!

Yet, no one ever complains about corporate welfare or the exorbitant amounts we spend on war:both inefficiently and ineffectively. In defense of his recent budget cuts, Bush proclaimed that he bases his decision to cut programs on whether a given program is performing. Perhaps he should apply the same standard to his war on terror. He keeps asking for more and more money, but is anyone measuring the results? IS anyone being held accountable for this spending? $8.8 billion in war money remains UNACCOUNTED FOR.

George, no worries my friend. There's plenty of outrage to go around and it runs deep.

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rightthinker 8 years, 1 month ago

Impeach him for what??

I think Dems already have blamed Bush for everything, including poor driving conditions in Lawrence, the fact that Wal-Mart is out of duct tape etc, the weather, the fact their constipated etc etc.

This middle class thing is not new. Welcome to America.

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wolfmn58 8 years, 1 month ago

What ever happened to We The People not We The Goverment?

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KsTwister 8 years, 1 month ago

Outrage is waiting for the people who vote these people into office to begin with to wise up---and you can include local seats at city hall too. You would think citizens would be livid when they put the issues on the table,hear the outrage,then your officials do what they want anyway. We need more restrictions on our government,local,state and national because the criminal is what citizens must tolerate when officials force their laws and taxes on you in spite of what is right and just. The protests of the past need to return,and soon.

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Jamesaust 8 years, 1 month ago

"I note that the man is a lame duck and unimpeachable given his party's majorities."

From what I hear, you shouldn't say this to Arminius. As I understand it, impeachment may be retroactive. What's more, if Bush doesn't cure his port security deaf-ear soon, I think the potential of a Democrat house in Congress may become reality this Fall.

That said: "the nation's wealth"

Sir! This "nation" has no wealth. I assume you meant sum of the wealth of individual citizens of this nation. Each citizen possesses 100% of their own wealth the last I noticed. Please keep your thieving hands off other's wealth. I remind you stealing is a SIN.

"erosion" of the middle class? No. They got rich.

"Longstanding middle-class programs are labeled unsustainable..."

If you believe the only problem is one of nomenclature, I don't see where you can be helped. The fundamental flaws in these programs are well documented. Except for extremists, the only issue is how we adapt to those flaws.

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