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Fri Mar 20, 2009 at 06:59 PM PDT

Outrage now and Crickets then

by Dburn

As I sit here in disbelief reading about the OUTRAGE over the 165 Million in bonuses given to people that the taxpayers bailed out , I seem to recall the sound of crickets in the last 8 years over things like this:

A blast from the past met with the sound of crickets and the circular filing of sternly worded letters.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - More than 1.6 million U.S. businesses owe the

Internal Revenue Service more than $58 billion in unpaid taxes

for Social Security, Medicare and unemployment insurance, a government watchdog agency said on Tuesday.

In a report to the Senate Homeland Security investigations subcommittee, the Government Accountability Office said the IRS fails to take full advantage of tools available to collect unpaid taxes and to prevent further cheating on payroll taxes.

"When businesses do not remit payroll taxes, they are using employees' money to fund business operations or the personal lifestyle of the businesses' owners," GAO Director of Financial Management and Assurance Steven Sebastian said in testimony to the committee.[emphasis added]

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I go to sleep to one outrage and wake up to another.

. But for a growing proportion of U.S. workers, the troubles really set in when they apply for unemployment benefits.

More than a quarter of people applying for such claims have their rights to the benefit challenged as employers increasingly act to block payouts to former workers.

A Quarter as in 25% as in almost a million claims in the last 6 months? WTF?  I realize this is at the State level , but many of these employers have national operations.

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Short diary here to call out attention to an article I tripped over. This is privatization in action and I think this should be thrown into any GOP or DEMs face who help facilitate a transfer of govt function to private industry.

For years, the juvenile court system in Wilkes-Barre operated like a conveyor belt: Youngsters were brought before judges without a lawyer, given hearings that lasted only a minute or two, and then sent off to juvenile prison for months for minor offenses.

In one of the most shocking cases of courtroom graft on record, two Pennsylvania judges have been charged with taking millions of dollars in kickbacks to send teenagers to two privately run youth detention centers.

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If you are like me, when I hear the acronym TARP I can feel my sphincter tighten. I can feel , yes feel, my blood pressure rise. Angry can't possibly do justice to the way I feel about how our politicians have handled these thieves.

If we lied like they are and have, we would go to jail. I also know one of the main reasons why a 600 billion dollar problem turned into a multi-trillion dollar taxpayer problem and was the trip wire that started this nasty recession: Credit Default Swaps. It's the great multiplier of holes in a banks capital that we have had to fill.

Imagine my surprise, when I tripped across the following...

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From 1980 to 1986, I was a lowly traveling salesperson. My territory included parts of Indiana, Michigan, North Ohio, Western Pa and West Virginia. It was there I saw and felt the devastation of what 25%+ of unemployment looked like ( now referred to as the U-6 Rate). My job was selling Music stores cheap instruments and accessories. I was a Van Jobber. It was a cash and carry business. I was 24 when I started. I had the rosy red cheeks and the unbridled optimism of youth. That and my mobility allowed me to survive.

But what I saw then is what will soon be here now or has already arrived in certain areas. If you were my age or older you probably remember businesses closing and the millions of unemployed. Seeing it up close in the hardest hit areas of the country, was something I didn't think I would see again until now

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Thu Dec 04, 2008 at 12:39 PM PST

Pushing Out a Lone Voice of Reason

by Dburn

Bloomberg is reporting that Timothy Geithner, looks like he is flexing his new found power and "May" be trying to push Sheila Bair out as head of the FDIC.

Yes she is a R, but she has been the lone voice on behalf of the homeowners. She has proven that her system works after rthe FDIC took over IndyMac and she successfully modified 5500 mortgages. In a recent interview with Lisa Myers of NBC news, she stated that about half the foreclosures could be avoided for around 24-40 billion should the program go national.

It's been met with resistance by Paulson who for some reason insists on printing money to pour into the Black hole , formerly referred to as banks.

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Sat Sep 13, 2008 at 06:18 PM PDT

Sarah- What About Venezuela and Bolivia?

by Dburn

Secondary Title: While we weren't looking.

As they say in the news business, this Russia story has legs. What could be more evident than the news today that Russia had flown two Tupelev Bombers to Venzuela.

Here's a tid bit:

Venezuela throws out US ambassador as tensions soar
President Hugo Chavez has thrown out the US ambassador to Venezuela and threatened to cut off American oil supplies, further escalating tensions with Washington just two days after Russia sent strategic bombers to Caracas in a move unseen since the Cold War.

Poll

Does Anyone think this will come up in the debates?

41%21 votes
3%2 votes
5%3 votes
47%24 votes
1%1 votes

| 51 votes | Vote | Results

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Sun Jun 29, 2008 at 07:45 AM PDT

Email Smears on Obama- Let's end it

by Dburn

I got another email slur a few days ago which I'll post.  What is the best way of stopping these things as even the campaigns are struggling with it? Then I had an idea. First lets look at the smear on the other side:

Also before you judge, perhaps reading this may help.

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Fri Mar 14, 2008 at 12:26 PM PDT

Newsweek "Why McCain Might Win"

by Dburn

While browsing for some commentary on the Bear Stearn's collapse, I caught this headline from Newsweek.

He can sit back while the Dems tear each other to shreds.

No kidding. Not only that the GOP may get bailed out in some tight congressional races too. I participate on another board that has a high mix of GOPers and Dems. No echo chambers there. The GOPers Can't believe their good fortune. Not only do they have a chance of winning they may not have to spend a bloody fortune to do it. How great is that. They don't have to give up any of their winnings from the last 8 years to maybe get another 4-8 years.

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Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 09:16 AM PST

The McCain Gambit-How He Buys Your Vote

by Dburn

I'm not one to piss on parades...well yeah I guess I am. I am one of the delusional Obama supporters. I read his health Care plan. I was Ok with it because I know he has to deal with congress. Then I picked up Fortune magazine and saw McCain's plan and got hit with a dose of reality.

If there is anyone in the room, shut the door unless you can scream silently.

Poll

$5000 reduction now in Health Insurance or a few years from now?

20%9 votes
6%3 votes
72%32 votes

| 44 votes | Vote | Results

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Sun Feb 17, 2008 at 03:02 PM PST

A Snippet of Schumer on Clinton

by Dburn

I hit the net version of MTP and I heard this
( From The Transcript)

Russert: Senator Schumer, if Barack Obama was ahead at the end of this primary season in elected delegates, states won and popular vote, should he be the nominee?

SEN. SCHUMER: Well, you know, again, to predict what will happen after June 7, when there are going to be so many twists and turns, you need to know lots of details. Did he win the other states 60-40 or did he win them 50.1 to 49.9? Is the popular vote overwhelming or is it not?

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Sat Dec 29, 2007 at 04:57 PM PST

Suggestion: Readable Candidate Diaries

by Dburn

We all went into reasons today in a great diary on site traffic trends. There was another one that researched how many times a candidate diaries occupied the rec list by percentage. It dovetailed nicely with the readership loss.

Rather than slam the candidate diaries one more time here is a few suggestions that would make them readable instead of posting You Tubes, talking points, speeches etc.

Here's the kind of candidate diary I would click into.

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