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Lawrence smoking ban challenge goes to Supreme Court

cait48 - As an ex-smoker, I agree. One can't compare running a business the same way one drives a car. Good greif. Tobacco is still a legal product. I think it stinks. I enjoy going into a smoke free resturant. I would never start smoking again, but until it is deemed an illegal product, the business owner should have a right to run his own business. Driving is a privilege and not a right. Tobacco again, is still a legal product. Make tobacco illegal and I might be able to agree with Klickhammer.

What I like about this is that it will be heard by the Supreme Court. That should put the issue to rest, one way or another.

August 28, 2006 at 7:24 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Critics of property tax increase say: 'Senior citizens are being thrown to the wolves'

swbsow "Also, does that apply to employers who contribute/provide healthcare plans? After all they are helping out with their employees' healthcare....." The answer to that is yes. Again, not what you want to hear. If your employer is paying you a salary, your employer has a right to tell you what to do to earn your salary. Can we agree that that is correct? If you accept that, then you should be able to accept the fact that your healthcare insurance, paid by your employer, is part of your compensation package and if so, you, along with your employer have a responsibility to control those costs. Lifestyle choices can and do effect insurance rates. If one does not want their employer to control their lifestyle choices, that is okay too, then pay for your own insurance. Take responsibility yourself. In other words, where does it say that your employer is responsible to pay for your insurance? That is a benefit. Employers have paid for so much of it that companies now like General Motors are in trouble because they are more of an insurance provider and retirement fund manager than what they are automobile manufactuers. They also have not listened to the consumer as to what to build for cars. Having said that, GM got themselves into that spot. There are two signatures on the labor contract.

Further, if you think that Medicaid is really only for seniors, you are sadly mistaken. There are more non-seniors in this state on Medicaid than seniors. Check the facts with KDOA and SRS. Ask your legislators where the money is being spent. Medicaid was designed for the poor, regardless of age.

"So if you are retired or are retiring soon (and I am assuming you are older than me),...."

You are partly correct. I will admit that I am no doubt older than you. Since I have paid into the SSI fund for about 40+ years and have yet to draw from same, I would say that I have paid in more than what I have taken out. Yes, it will get worse when the boomers retire. I believe it will get even worse when the genX's retire because I am not convinced that they are planning for that time of their life. They seem to be more concerned with the "me" generation concept. If that is the case, then someone behind me/us will have to pay dearly for this. It will be my children and grandchildren. I feel sorry for them. You need to remember that SSI is a supplemental income. The primary retirement income is the responsibility of the individual. Where does it say that the Government is reponsible for your retirement happiness? Happiness is not an entitlement! We are all created equal in the pursuit of happiness, not guaranteed happiness.

I think this "old" person needs to sign off tonight. See you another time and we can spar some more. I like it when it prevokes the thought process. Later.

:))))))

August 27, 2006 at 7:57 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Critics of property tax increase say: 'Senior citizens are being thrown to the wolves'

swbsow - I don't think you read my post that close. I never said that I thought cell phones are expensive, although I believe when the final bill comes, they are. I must have hit a nerve with you. If you are on Medicaid and I don't have any idea if you are, you should really consider your means and I don't believe that includes a cell phone. If you are not on Medicaid, I, nor anyone else, has a right to judge your choice to have one. Having said that however, if you want me to pay for your healhcare, then I believe I should have a right to have input as to how you live. Not what you want to hear.

"It boils down to this, if you can't afford it (for whatever reason), then you have to give it up or do without it." - I could not agree more, except I just don't think you should have to give up your home, and yes your cell phone, just because someone else is wasting your hard earned tax dollars.

August 27, 2006 at 4:32 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Critics of property tax increase say: 'Senior citizens are being thrown to the wolves'

swbsow - I live very much within my means. I neither desire or need to downsize my home. Further, I own my own business and have more cell phones that you can imagine. If people want to downsize that is their choice. I have no problem with that. I just don't think that one should "have" to do it, just because someone is wasting our tax dollars. When one takes all the tax dollars that we pay in total, ie: income, real estate, sales, etc. it can and does in many cases, add up to as much as 50% of one's income. As you know, real estate is only part of the tax burden.

You can call it a cell phone rant if you want to, but just don't ask me and other tax payers of this country to pay for someones else's lack of responsiblity while they go on with the joys of life, ie: having luxuries (that includes cell phones). That is called redistribution of wealth. There are others places on this planet that thrives on that. The USA should not be one of them. For people that can't afford healthcare, etc. we have a system in place and it is called Medicaid. Obviously a social program that I support. We need to take care of those that can't do it themselves, but I have a major problem paying for those folks and then seeing them use their cell phones and other items that are obvioulsy outside their level of income. If you don't believe that happens, you have your head in the sand. Is the answer just to expand that?

Also: "Lots of older folks downsize simply because it costs too much to maintain their home or they are physically unable to do so. There is no shame in doing it."

This statement may be true, but you should NOT HAVE to do it. That is the point. Why should you "have" to give up your home? If you want something smaller because of your choices, ie: too big to clean, etc. that's okay too, but again, you should not be forced to do it because of higher property taxes that are wasted away on who knows what.

August 27, 2006 at 3:54 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Critics of property tax increase say: 'Senior citizens are being thrown to the wolves'

oldgranny, no I am not kidding. How would you like 50% of your income taken away? The wealthy generally take risks that the rest of us would not take. They should be rewarded accordingly. Not discouraged from being sucessful. We have a pretty good life in this country due to people taking a risk and succeeding. Why should they be punished?

August 27, 2006 at 2:49 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Critics of property tax increase say: 'Senior citizens are being thrown to the wolves'

oldgranny - Right on! Go girl! I agree. It is what I call waste. Not getting what you pay for. Unfortuantely it is not all the fault of the school system. The primary education of a child begins at home.

August 27, 2006 at 2:45 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Critics of property tax increase say: 'Senior citizens are being thrown to the wolves'

swbsow - Good grief, what do you consider a rich person? Probably anyone who has more money that you do. Do some homework on how much the wealthy pay in income taxes. Most of the income tax paid in this country is paid by the wealthy. I thank them for that and wish I was in that position! If 50% of your income was being taken away for redistribution for "whatever and waste", I would think you and anyone else in that catagory would be looking for ways to shield it too. They work hard and what do they get? Someone either trying to take it away or someone complaining because they didn't do as well. Only in America! Ugh!

August 27, 2006 at 2:28 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Critics of property tax increase say: 'Senior citizens are being thrown to the wolves'

Downsize? Is that what the younger generation thinks the seniors should do? Where does it say that a senior should leave their home of "x" years, just so some govenment entity can just spend more and more of their money? Whose money is it anyway? I don't believe that most seniors expect a free ride since they have raised their kids and it is now someone else's turn. I just think a senior has been around long enough to see that there appears to be no end in sight as to just how much some people want of your money! Most people don't mind paying taxes. What I believe most people don't like is seeing their tax money wasted. Change that? It will never happen.

August 27, 2006 at 2:19 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Critics of property tax increase say: 'Senior citizens are being thrown to the wolves'

The problem is only going to get worse, unless the State and Local Governments quit relying on property taxes. I have said all along that when the baby boomers become senior citizens, which is starting to happen, and their homes are paid off they will really see, some for the first time, just how much they are paying in property taxes. When the tax is included into your monthly payment, it is easy to ignore the problem. The legislators know that. When you have no house payment and you have to pay at least one half of the total annual tax just before Christmas (who's crazy idea was that anyway), bam! People are going to get really upset. Seniors and especially the baby boomers, have a tendency to get their own way. They will become vocal and vote accordingly. Until then, expect to just pay more and more and more.....!

The City and County have no control over the value of real estate. That is a result of our own creed wanting bigger and nicer houses and paying for them. Appraisals are done utilizing comparibles. The more the newcomer into my neighborhood pays for his house, the more mine (if comparable and according to the County they alwas are) is worth and the more I pay in property taxes without the mill levy even increasing.

I am sorry to say that seniors will get hit real hard within the next few years if nothing is done to change this. The only hope is that there will be more people practicing thier civic duty and going to the polls to vote the bums out.

August 27, 2006 at 7:11 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Healthy goal

Okay guys! Here's one you won't like! You want universal healthcare? You know someone has to pay for that. Who should it be? I have the answer. Call Cingular, Verizon, Sprint. They have the money. These same folks that everybody talks about not having health insurance don't seem to be without a cell phone. My case says that it is not necessarily becasue they can't afford it, but rather because they don't make healthcare and insurance a priority in their life. That's okay, but don't ask the taxpayer to pay for it. That's my story and I am sticking to it.

August 26, 2006 at 7:19 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

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