Top Of My Head

Thoughts on everything from Politics to Video Games

Month: July 2011 (page 2 of 4)

House Republicans – Full of Shit

I am just too disgusted and sick to my stomach by the crap the House Republicans (and four Democrats) passed.  Give me a break!  The cut the things that actually would help this country the most. (clean energy, infrastructure, education and job training)  Do they have any idea that our infrastructure needs a trillion dollar overhaul?  And, let’s not educate or train our people!  What’s the fun in that?  And, don’t even get me started on clean energy.

Where’s the cuts to the subsidies to the corporations that are making record profits?  Oh, no, let’s not make our rich friends unhappy.

Pandering to the Tea Party isn’t going to eventually cost them elections – it’s going to cost us our country.  And, why pass something that will just get vetoed anyway?

It’s a waste of time.  Amazing – it didn’t go far enough, so Michele Bachmann didn’t vote for it.  Way to show just how extreme you are, Bachmann!

Check out this blog post, if you would like to know about how wonderful your life would be if the Tea Party ran it.

I can’t even be bothered with being nice anymore.

Let’s throw Paul Ryan out of office.  It’s time for him to go.

Michele Bachmann: Commanded by her Husband

First, I’d like to set the record straight:  Jesus never said that a woman needed to be subservient to her husband.  St. Peter and St. Paul both wrote it in letters.  No where in the New Testament did Jesus say it.  In fact, Jesus usually defended women (see woman who anoints Jesus’ feet with her hair), appears to them first and made sure – while the cross – that a disciple took care of his mother.

Second, let’s get to Michele Bachmann.  She may be able to read a law book (I said maybe), but she’s totally wrong on the “I have to be subservient to my husband.”

Which brings me to this: Do we really want a President who will listen to her husband above all others?  What if Marcus decides it is time to bomb, I don’t know, Brazil?  By her own belief, she’d have to order it.

What if Marcus wants all gays locked up (and he does, so he can “cure” us)?  There’s enough crazy GOP members to go along, she could order it.

These are extremes, not unlike the Bachmanns.  We don’t need a woman who bows down to her husband in the White House.

You’d never see Sarah bow down to Todd.  And, for that, she gains a point.

Tax Rates 2000 – 2011

Below are all of the tax rates, along side their respective income levels.  I found the data at Money Chimp, so you can review it for yourself.  Remember, all these tax rates are on NET, not GROSS income.  For those that do not know the difference, Gross is what you earn and Net is what you actually bring home, after all deductions.

2000 Tax Rates:

Income

Beginning Salary Ending Salary Tax Rate

$0.00

$26,250.00

15.0%

$26,250.00

$63,550.00

28.0%

$63,550.00

$132,600.00

31.0%

$132,600.00

$288,350.00

36.0%

$288,350.00

 above

39.6%

2001 Tax Rates:

Income

Beginning Salary Ending Salary Tax Rate

$0.00

$27,050.00

15.0%

$27,050.00

$65,550.00

27.5%

$65,550.00

$136,750.00

30.5%

$136,750.00

$297,350.00

35.5%

$297,350.00

above

39.1%

2002 Tax Rates:

Income

Beginning Salary Ending Salary Tax Rate

$0.00

$6,000.00

10.0%

$6,000.00

$27,950.00

15.0%

$27,950.00

$67,700.00

27.0%

$67,700.00

$141,250.00

30.0%

$141,250.00

$307,050.00

35.0%

$307,050.00

above

38.6%

2003 Tax Rates:

Income

Beginning Salary Ending Salary Tax Rate

$0.00

$7,000.00

10.0%

$7,000.00

$28,400.00

15.0%

$28,400.00

$68,800.00

25.0%

$68,800.00

$143,500.00

28.0%

$143,500.00

$311,950.00

33.0%

$311,950.00

above

35.0%

2004 Tax Rates:

Income

Beginning Salary Ending Salary Tax Rate

$0.00

$7,150.00

10.0%

$7,150.00

$29,050.00

15.0%

$29,050.00

$70,350.00

25.0%

$70,350.00

$146,750.00

28.0%

$146,750.00

$319,100.00

33.0%

$319,100.00

above

35.0%

2005 Tax Rates:

Income

Beginning Salary Ending Salary Tax Rate

$0.00

$7,300.00

10.0%

$7,300.00

$29,700.00

15.0%

$29,700.00

$71,950.00

25.0%

$71,950.00

$150,150.00

28.0%

$150,150.00

$326,450.00

33.0%

$326,450.00

above

35.0%

2006 Tax Rates:

Income

Beginning Salary Ending Salary Tax Rate

$0.00

$7,550.00

10.0%

$7,550.00

$30,650.00

15.0%

$30,650.00

$74,200.00

25.0%

$74,200.00

$154,800.00

28.0%

$154,800.00

$336,550.00

33.0%

$336,500.00

above

35.0%

2007 Tax Rates:

Income

Beginning Salary Ending Salary Tax Rate

$0.00

$7,825.00

10.0%

$7,825.00

$31,850.00

15.0%

$31,850.00

$77,100.00

25.0%

$77,100.00

$160,850.00

28.0%

$160,850.00

$349,700.00

33.0%

$349,700.00

above

35.0%

2008 Tax Rates:

Income

Beginning Salary Ending Salary Tax Rate

$0.00

$8,025.00

10.0%

$8,025.00

$32,550.00

15.0%

$32,550.00

$78,850.00

25.0%

$78,850.00

$164,550.00

28.0%

$164,550.00

$357,700.00

33.0%

$357,700.00

above

35.0%

2009 Tax Rates:

Income

Beginning Salary Ending Salary Tax Rate

$0.00

$8,350.00

10.0%

$8,350.00

$33,950.00

15.0%

$33,950.00

$82,250.00

25.0%

$8,250.00

$171,550.00

28.0%

$171,550.00

$372,950.00

33.0%

$372,950.00

above

35.0%

2010 Tax Rates:

Income

Beginning Salary Ending Salary Tax Rate

$0.00

$8,375.00

10.0%

$8,375.00

$34,000.00

15.0%

$34,000.00

$82,400.00

25.0%

$82,400.00

$171,850.00

28.0%

$171,850.00

$373,650.00

33.0%

$373,650.00

above

35.0%

2011 Tax Rates:

Income

Beginning Salary Ending Salary Tax Rate

$0.00

$8,500.00

10.0%

$8,500.00

$34,500.00

15.0%

$34,500.00

$83,600.00

25.0%

$83,600.00

$174,400.00

28.0%

$174,400.00

$379,150.00

33.0%

$379,150.00

above

35.0%

 

Economics

Let’s discuss how to pay a debt.

  1. You earn revenue – that’s money coming in.
  2. You send your debtor a check for what you owe.
  3. Repeat steps 1 and 2 until debt is paid.

See how easy that is?

Now, here’s a little tip to make it even easier:  Don’t quit your job while still trying to pay your debt.  In other words, don’t lower your revenue, because if you lower your revenue, you will have a harder time meeting all of your obligations, including your debt repayment.

Let’s move this out to the government:

  1. Receive taxes.
  2. Send checks to debtors.
  3. Repeat steps 1 and 2 until all debts are paid.

To pay the debt off faster, cut spending.  To not pay it off at all, cut revenue.

That’s what the Republicans want to do, they want to cut our revenue when we can least afford to do so.  They are holding the debt ceiling hostage because they don’t want to raise the taxes on the richest people in our nation from 35% to 39.6%.  This isn’t going to raise your taxes or even my taxes.  I’ve all ready discussed in an earlier post what will happen if we default.

Tomorrow, I’m going to post the tax rates over the past ten years.  Remember, these aren’t rates on your GROSS salary, they’re on your NET.

 

Fox Nation VS Huffington Post

Talk about battling headlines!  Two different websites discuss the new Sarah Palin documentary, “The Undefeated” with two very different takes:

Palin Film Opens Strong, Theaters Packed

Sarah Palin Documentary Premiere: Film Opens To Nearly Empty Audience

The first headline comes from Fox Nation. The article below it clarifies that the theater in Grapevine, TX sold out. That’s pretty impressive, I guess. Grapevine has 46,000 residents and the AMC Theater has 28 different screens – 5 of which are showing Harry Potter.

The second headline comes from Huffington Post.  The article below this headline comes from the Atlantic and other sources.  However; the main gist is about a theater in Orange County, CA.  I wouldn’t expect anyone to show up for a Sarah Palin documentary in Orange County, CA.  That is definitely not Palin Country.

Anyway, I think both of these headlines just show how far we’ll go to spin a story.  Remember when the media would’ve told both sides of the story in one article?  A headline stating, “Palin Documentary Has Mixed Turnouts” would be more appropriate. Don’t you agree?

 

The Strangest Thing

This is a little personal and some might say TMI, but I am a regular person. Pretty much the sametime everyday, I make a trip to the ladies room. Now, there aren’t a lot of women at this location for my company, but there are a lot of women in this building and on my floor.
Here’s the strange thing.
Everyday, after I enter the bathroom and select my stall, I hear the same woman enter. I know it is the same woman because she selects the first stall and quietly speaks to herself. The first few times, I thought she was on a cellphone. Then, I realized that cells don’t work in the bathroom.
I don’t think she realizes I am there and I have never seen her.
I just wanted to share.

Posted from WordPress for Android

Concealed Carry – Part One

Real Facts

Look at any pro-Concealed Carry website and you will find a statement about how it makes us safer or reduces crime.  Since Wisconsin decided to join the other 48 states and become a Concealed Carry state, I thought I would go back to the crime statistics and see what’s what.  If the pro-Concealed Carry crowd is correct, than next year, Wisconsin should see a huge drop in crime, right?

According to Concealed Campus, that would be true.  According to a PDF on their site, Florida’s homicide rate fell from 36% above the national average to 4% below (as of 2005).  I decided to do some checking on my own.

In 1982 – five years BEFORE Florida passes Concealed Carry – Florida had 1409 Murders and Non-Negligent Manslaughters.  The entire Country had 20818 (includes Florida’s numbers).  The average is 416 (rounding down, you can’t have .36 crimes).  In 1982, Florida is 993 crimes higher than the national average.

Five years later, in 1987 when Florida passes Concealed Carry, Florida had 1371 Murders and Non-Negligent Manslaughters.  The National Average that year was 397.  Florida was still higher.

Five years after Florida passed their Concealed Carry law, they had 1208 Murders and Non-Negligent Manslaughters.  The National Average was 466.

That doesn’t seem to be much in the way of improvement.  Certainly it doesn’t appear that Concealed Carry had much of an affect at all.  However; perhaps, I’m not being fair.  What percent of all murders are committed in Florida?

What about the murder rate?

The murder rate is the number of offenses per 100,000 people.  Florida’s murder rate in 1982 was 13.5; the Nation’s murder rate was 9.1. To put it in perspective, California’s was 11.2 and Texas was 16.1.  Sadly, the District of Columbia had a murder rate of 30.7 – the highest in the nation.  In fact the District of Columbia always has the highest murder rate.  This is a sad state of affairs when we can’t look after our nation’s capital.

Since 1982, the Nation’s murder rate has dropped from 9.1 to 5.  Florida’s has dropped from 13.5 to 5.5.  Still higher than the National murder rate, but still pretty impressive.  In the same time span, the National murder rate dropped from 9.1 to 5.

Is the website correct?  Nope.  Florida in 1982 was 32.59% higher than the National murder rate.  In 1987, Florida was 27.19% higher than the National murder rate.  In 2005, Florida was 10.71% lower than the National murder rate, which is very impressive.  As of 2009, Florida is roughly 10% higher than the National murder rate.

{Part Two coming soon}

Jobless Recovery

To understand why we are having a jobless recovery, you must understand economics.  Unfortunately, most people in this country do not really understand economics.  So, here’s a very brief explanation.

Our economy is consumption driven – the old supply and demand.  Let’s say I own a widget factory and I make one widget a day – 5 widgets a week.  I send my widgets to the marketplace and every week, I sell all of my widgets.  But, one week, I notice that there are still 5 people in line wanting to buy my widgets.  If I could make more widgets, I’m certain that I could sell all of them, as well.

So, I return to my factory, and hire a person to help me make widgets.  I pay him an hourly wage that pretty much leaves me with most of the profit – this is MY factory and these are MY widgets and if he was bright, he could start his own widget factory.  This is America after all.

Now,  because there are two people building them, I can make and sell ten widgets a week.  Some time goes by and word gets out that I make the best widgets.  Now, I notice that there are three people standing in line when my widgets are sold out.  So, instead of hiring someone new, I make my one and only employee a salary employee (which means I don’t have to pay him overtime) and I make him work longer hours to make those extra three widgets.  Since I don’t have to pay him overtime, I’m still making an enormous profit.

This is how companies work.  This is capitalism, admittedly, at its very basic level, but you get the idea.

If the economy falters and I stop selling 13 widgets a week, I’ll cut my employee’s job.

If I discover that I can outsource widget making to China or Taiwan, bye bye employee.

And, guess what, if the government cuts my taxes, I’m not going to use that money to build another factory (creating new jobs) or hire employees in my old one, I’m going to keep it.  I deserve it.  I came up with this idea for a company and I built it.  And, that’s why giving tax breaks to the richest in this country, isn’t going to create jobs.

If there is not consumption on the bottom and middle rungs of our country, there is no reason for companies to hire.  Cutting the taxes of the rich does not cause jobs to magically appear.  It just makes the rich, richer.  And, because that revenue needs to be made up in some manner, it makes the poor, poorer.  Cutting things like health care for the poor to give tax breaks to the rich is absolutely the most despicable thing we could do in this country.  Cutting school lunches for poor kids or the breakfasts before school, where this might be their only decent meal – and give a 10% tax break to the rich who can afford to pay their taxes under the guise that this will create jobs is irresponsible and ridiculous.  But, that’s what the Republicans are selling you – a tax break for those at the top who don’t need one.

Are there people in this country that don’t pay any money in taxes?  Yes, yes there are and if the Republicans have their way, more of them will be rich than poor.

Jon Stewart Agrees…

I’m not alone, even Jon Stewart thinks Marcus Bachmann has something to hide.

“He’s so gay, he calls Top Gun that volleyball movie.”  I just love how Bachmann refers to the bi-curious as Barbarians (I’ve heard the whole “interview” and he’s talking about the bi-curious.)

Me think thee lady doth protest too much.

Bachmann and the Debt Ceiling…

Michele Bachmann wants you to believe that she’s fiscally responsible.  She wants you to believe that she and the Republican Party had nothing to do with the economy.  She wants you to believe that the stimulus package was a waste of money and didn’t save jobs.  She wants you to believe that raising the debt ceiling right now would be bad and she’s never voted for a raise.

She’s lying on all points.

Back in April, she voted for Ryan’s budget – the one that changes Medicare and lowers the rich tax rate to 25% (10% down from the 35% they pay now).  The Budget wasn’t balanced – the tax cuts would add more to the deficit than they would “save”.  (You can’t cut income and revenue and pay off debt, it just doesn’t happen.)  If Ryan’s budget had passed the Senate, it would’ve necessitated the raising of the debt ceiling.

That’s not fiscally responsible.

Here’s something else (I’m going through her voting record):

Bachmann voted against the Pay As You Go resolution.  The one that states: ”Vote to pass Title IV of the resolution that amends Rule XXI to require that any tax cuts must be offset by either a different tax increase or spending cut, and to require certain listings of congressional earmarks and limited tax and tariff benefits.

See, apparently, she doesn’t understand how fiscal responsibility works.  You can’t cut revenue without cutting spending.

I’m going to stop here.  I’m going to go through her votes.  I know this woman shouldn’t be President, but I think the rest of the country needs to know it.

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