Licia Ronzulli, member of the European Parliament, has been taking her daughter Vittoria to the Parliament sessions for two years now.
“ And then there’s the Violence Against Women Act, which was supposed to be one of the year’s easy ones. It wasn’t. Back in April, the Senate approved VAWA reauthorization fairly easily, with a 68 to 31 vote. The bill was co-written by a liberal Democrat (Vermont’s Pat Leahy) and a conservative Republican (Idaho’s Mike Crapo), and seemed on track to be reauthorized without much of a fuss, just as it was in 2000 and 2005. But House Republicans insisted the bill is too supportive of immigrants, the LGBT community, and Native Americans — and they’d rather let the law expire than approve a slightly expanded proposal. Vice President Biden, who helped write the original law, tried to persuade House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) to keep the law alive, but the efforts didn’t go anywhere. And so, for the first time since 1994, the Violence Against Women Act is no more. ”
My Taxes Are Documented. I Am Not.
Undocumented American workers paid $11.2 billion in taxes in 2010 — putting money INTO systems like health care, Social Security, and education, not taking it out. Attacks on American immigrants have claimed the opposite. Ironically, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection annual budget is $3.5 billion — an amount covered by undocumented Americans three times over. Share this with someone who doesn’t see the value that new Americans bring to our communities every day through their work and through their paychecks.
YES YES YES LETS JUST KEEP REBLOGING TILL PEOPLE GET IT THROUGH THEIR THICK STUPID SKULLS
They may not be documented, but they are never, ever illegal aliens. If you’re one of the people still using that offensive slur, please stop now. It makes you look bad.
First of all, according to MassGAP and MWPC, Romney did appoint 14 women out of his first 33 senior-level appointments, which is a reasonably impressive 42 percent. However, as I have reported before, those were almost all to head departments and agencies that he didn’t care about — and in some cases, that he quite specifically wanted to not really do anything. None of the senior positions Romney cared about — budget, business development, etc. — went to women.
Secondly, a UMass-Boston study found that the percentage of senior-level appointed positions held by women actually declined throughout the Romney administration, from 30.0% prior to his taking office, to 29.7% in July 2004, to 27.6% near the end of his term in November 2006. (It then began rapidly rising when Deval Patrick took office.)
Third, note that in Romney’s story as he tells it, this man who had led and consulted for businesses for 25 years didn’t know any qualified women, or know where to find any qualified women. So what does that say?”
Mitt Romney is in a bit of hot water for comments he made during a closed-door fundraiser about the 47% of Americans who don’t pay federal income taxes.
I’m generally pretty sympathetic to people saying stupid things in closed-door fundraisers, but the whole flap raises an interesting question: Is it really true that 47% of Americans pay no federal income tax? And who are these people? And do they believe that they are victims entitled to health care and housing?
How many people don’t pay federal income tax in the US?
Lots of people. The 47% stat is accurate, as long as you only count federal income taxes. (More than 85% of Americans under 65 pay either income tax, federal payroll tax, or both—and almost all Americans who own land or buy things pay state and local taxes.)
Who are these people?
Many elderly people who live off social security pay no income tax (social security benefits are only taxable if your total income is over $25,000 a year). Only about 25% of Americans over the age of 75 pay federal income tax, but it’s important to remember that most of them did pay federal income tax when they were working.
Also, many young adults pay no income taxes, because they are full-time students or have very low incomes. You can see a chart here that shows that about 30% of 18-year-olds pay federal income tax, while over 65% of people in their 40s do.
People living in poverty are also unlikely to pay federal income taxes. A married couple filing jointly making under $18,700 annually pays no income taxes. But it’s worth noting that in 1996, 99.5% of all nontaxable returns came from people making less than $30,000 a year. Today, that number is closer to 76%.
The fastest growing segment of Americans who pay no tax are those who earn between $75,000 and $100,000 each year. As explained here, there’s been a 12,000% increase in nontaxable returns in this income category thanks to middle income tax cuts and tax credits introduced by both George W. Bush and Barack Obama.
Romney’s central mistake is imagining the data as static. In 2000, for instance, I paid no federal income tax. This doesn’t mean that I am a drain on the system: In fact, I have paid lots of federal income tax in other years. 2000 just happened to be a weird year, because I had a lot of health care expenses and not very much income.
This is the case for most Americans: Romney’s comments implied that the same 47% of Americans pay no federal income taxes every year. In fact, the members of that 47% are constantly changing as people age into and out of the work force.
Do these people believe that they are victims entitled to health care and housing?The most incendiary remark Governor Romney made was, “There are 47% who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care of them, who believe that they are entitled to healthcare, to food, to housing, to you-name-it.”In fact, the number of Americans who feel the government should provide health care and food to those in need is much higher than 47%. 76% of Americans (including a majority of Republicans) favor medicaid, the program that offers health care to the poor. A majority of Americans also believe medicare, the program that offers health care to the elderly, is worth its cost. And more than three quarters of Americans support the federal food stamp program that provides food to low-income and elderly people.
Dear John Green,
From the bottom of my heart I thank you for existing and being the perfect prince that you are because I was about to spend HOURS writing a post much like this one, and you did it better and more succinctly and with all the sources that would taken forever for me to hunt down, and thus would have stopped me from being able to concentrate on my Supply Chain Management homework.
From the bottom of my heart,
A thoroughly exhausted business school student, who is getting sick and tired of politicians trying to exploit Americans who don’t understand how our tax system works.
"…a timely, political satire that takes a sobering look at the “War on Women” and the criminalization of reproductive rights, by examining where our culture is headed when critical decisions affecting women’s healthcare are commandeered by ambitious politicians and faceless bureaucrats.
Think this sounds ridiculous? Think this is over the top? Think this would never happen? THINK AGAIN! “In South Carolina alone, an estimated 300 women have been arrested for actions taken during pregnancy. Rennie Gibbs of Mississippi, age 15, faces life in jail after a miscarriage, Bei Bei Shuai of Indiana has been charged with foeticide and sits in jail without parole, and Amanda Kimborough of Alabama, mother of 3, faces 10 years behind bars if convicted of causing her miscarriage…and her three children risk losing their mother.”
Ongoing Mexico Revolution - Ignored by the Media
Mexico, July 11, 2012. The largest protest in human history. USA and UK governments pushed the press not to publish. Google censored videos on youtube and restricted keywords on this event.
The Mexican media has blacking out the protests against their new government, who have been accused of doing everything from buying votes to buying off the media.
If the corporate media won’t spread this story, then let’s spread the story. Share this all over your pages and your friend’s pages and help support the democracy movement in Mexico.
What’s going on there?
there was an electoral fraud, mexico’s next president will be an illiterate man who has never read not even 3 books on his life and was imposed by the media and the party who ruled for over 70 years, he exposes clear misogynistic and homophobic behavior, his closest collaborators have been linked to the organized crime (that has mexico currently terrorized), and despite massive protests like this all over the country and people gathering proofs of the fraud, the federal electoral institute has ratified the election as legitimate and even paceful, when there is documentation of people being beaten up and/or held against their will while trying to supervise that the elections were clean
is this for real
crazy how I haven’t heard about this till now
- Accused President Obama’s health care law of funneling money away from Medicare “at the expense of the elderly.” In fact, Medicare’s chief actuary says the law “substantially improves” the system’s finances, and Ryan himself has embraced the same savings.
- Accused Obama of doing “exactly nothing” about recommendations of a bipartisan deficit commission — which Ryan himself helped scuttle.
- Claimed the American people were “cut out” of stimulus spending. Actually, more than a quarter of all stimulus dollars went for tax relief for workers.
- Faulted Obama for failing to deliver a 2008 campaign promise to keep a Wisconsin plant open. It closed less than a month before Obama took office.
- Blamed Obama for the loss of a AAA credit rating for the U.S. Actually, Standard & Poor’s blamed the downgrade on the uncompromising stands of both Republicans and Democrats.
Let’s break it down, yeah?
- Ryan continued the campaign’s false line of attack that Obama had “funneled” money out of Medicare to pay for the federal health care law “at the expense of the elderly.” But that’s contradicted by Medicare’s chief actuary, in a statement at the end of the most recent report of the system’s trustees:
Medicare Actuary, April 23, 2012: [Obama’s] Affordable Care Act makes important changes to the Medicare program and substantially improves its financial outlook …
- Medicare’s money isn’t being taken away. The Affordable Care Act calls for slowing the growth in spending, a move that — if successful — would keep the hospital insurance trust fund solvent for longer than if the reductions didn’t happen.
- Ryan himself proposed keeping most of these same spending cuts in his most recent “Path to Prosperity” budget. Yet, Ryan criticized Obama’s cuts as “the biggest, coldest power play of all” and suggested seniors would suffer as a result.
Ryan, Aug. 29: And the biggest, coldest power play of all in Obamacare came at the expense of the elderly. … [T]hey just took it all away from Medicare, $716 billion funneled out of Medicare by President Obama.
- The Affordable Care Act calls for a $716 billion reduction in the future growth of Medicare spending over 10 years, with most of that — about $415 billion — coming from a reduction in the future growth of payments to hospitals through Medicare Part A. And Medicare Part A’s trust fund, as we’ve explained before, is in trouble financially. It’s set to be insolvent in 2024, even with these spending cuts. Without them, the trust fund wouldn’t be able to fully pay projected benefits in 2016, the Medicare trustees estimate.
- Ryan accused Obama of doing “exactly nothing” about recommendations from a bipartisan presidential commission to reduce the deficit. But Ryan himself was among a minority of commission members whose opposition scuttled the plan and prevented it from being sent automatically to Congress for action.
- The National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform’s report proposed deep spending cuts in both domestic and military spending, and an overhaul of the tax code that would have lowered rates but raised revenues — all in an attempt to slow the growth of government by $4 trillion over 10 years.
Many Republicans, including Ryan, opposed the military cuts and new tax revenue, while many Democrats opposed changes to Social Security that included raising the full retirement age.
- The 18-member commission needed a super majority of 14 votes in order to bring the report to a vote in Congress. But it received the support of just 11 members. Seven members, including Ryan, opposed it, thus blocking congressional action.
- In a statement on the final report, Ryan said he “could not support the plan in its entirety,” but said some elements of it were “worthy of further pursuit.”
- Ryan opposed the commission’s approach to paying for lower federal income tax rates by taxing capital gains and dividends as ordinary income (see footnote on page 29). In his own latest budget plan, Ryanproposed to keep the current capital gains tax rate, arguing that to do otherwise “could precipitate a flight of capital away from job-creating businesses.”
- Like Ryan, Obama thanked the commission in a Dec. 3, 2010, statement that promised to “study closely” its proposals for possible inclusion in his own budget plans. Nine months later, Obama submitted a deficit reduction plan to the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction that was designed to reduce the deficit by $3.6 trillion over 10 years through a package of spending cuts and tax hikes.
- Obama and House Speaker John Boehner, a Republican, tried to work out a so-called “Grand Bargain” that would have reduced the deficit through a mix of tax hikes and spending cuts — and even changes to Social Security. The New York Times reported that the Grand Bargain would have raised the retirement age and changed the formula for calculating benefits. But, as the Times reported, the deal fell through as members of Boehner’s caucus objected to raising taxes.
- Ryan falsely claimed that the stimulus failed to help taxpayers and that it “cut out” the American people. Actually, more than 25 percent of stimulus dollars went to provide tax relief for workers.
Ryan: [The stimulus] cost $831 billion. The largest one-time expenditure ever by our federal government. … You, the American people of this country, were cut out of the deal.
- The nonpartisan Joint Committee on Taxation calculated that about $230 billion of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act provided tax relief. Much of that money, about $116 billion, funded the Making Work Pay tax credit for workers. In 2009 and 2010, the credit gave up to $400 to individuals earning up to $75,000, and gave up to $800 to couples earning up to $150,000.
- Ryan faulted Obama for a credit downgrade for which Ryan’s own party shares equal responsibility. Ryan said that “a presidency that began with such anticipation now comes to such a disappointing close.”
- Ryan refers to the decision of Standard & Poor’s, the credit rating agency, to downgrade its score for U.S. Treasury obligations from AAA to AA+ on Aug. 5, 2011. That took place just four days after Congress voted to raise the federal debt ceiling, following lengthy negotiations in which House Republicans sought to force concessions from Obama and Senate Democrats as the price for raising the ceiling and averting the first default on Treasury debt payments in U.S. history.
- In its report, Standard & Poor’s blamed both Republicans and Democrats for failing to come to agreement on spending cuts or revenue increases sufficient to reduce U.S. deficits significantly. It said:
S&P, Aug. 5, 2011: The political brinksmanship of recent months highlights what we see as America’s governance and policymaking becoming less stable, less effective, and less predictable than what we previously believed. The statutory debt ceiling and the threat of default have become political bargaining chips in the debate over fiscal policy. …
Republicans and Democrats have only been able to agree to relatively modest savings on discretionary spending while delegating to the Select Committee [of Congress] decisions on more comprehensive measures. It appears that for now, new revenues have dropped down on the menu of policy options.
Massachusetts’ unemployment rate was slightly lower than the national rate when Romney took office, and it was roughly the same as the national rate when he left.