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  • #31
    Re: Fiscal Cliff?

    Originally posted by Frankiarmz View Post
    During a recent trip to the mall I told my wife I would drink out of a toilet bowl before I paid for water.
    Umm, can we see a picture of that? j/k

    Comment


    • #32
      Re: Fiscal Cliff?

      Originally posted by Flux View Post
      Umm, can we see a picture of that? j/k
      Flux, I would use a straw, I do have limits.
      Last edited by Frankiarmz; 12-30-2012, 08:45 PM.

      Comment


      • #33
        Re: Fiscal Cliff?

        Tailgunner,

        I totally understand where you are coming from and I've made that case many times in past postings. Hey, I was born in 1944, grew up in the 50's. When I was a kid, my folks would give me a quarter to go to the movies where a double feature and several cartoons on Saturday afternoon cost me 15 cents. The remaining dime bought me a big box of candy at the little grocery store up the street, as the "Ritz" didn't have a concession stand. Downtown theaters, of which there were many charged a Nickle for a fresh box of popcorn and the Saturday matinee was still 15 cents. When I was in my late teens I remember bitching about the price of an evening show being raised to 85 cents. That was in 1964.

        I've been working since I was twelve, having a paper route, doing things for the neighbors, and even cleaning the barn for the local farmer and helping my Dad on his nights and weekends with furnace maintenance and installation jobs. My first job after highschool was as a bus boy where I made 1.25, worked on 32 hours a week and had to pay my folks $17 a week for room and board. Hey, life is tough.... and it's always been tough.

        By the time I was 19 I was working three jobs, minimum wage was $1.35 and I my best job made me $1.50 as an inspector in a factory. The following spring I bought my first new car, a 1965 VW bug for $1,856.00, financed it for 3 years at $56 a month. Bread was only 24 cents a loaf, but it was made that very morning... there was no such thing as "day-old" bread unless you went to the bakery and bought in "at the back door" for a nickle. Gasoline by the way, was 28 cents a gallon and I could fill up my VW for less than $3. BTW, it got an average of 32 miles to the gallon and 36 when I was cruising down the highway at 60. (Water, radio, and TV was ALL free... I don't remember even seeing water on sale in the store back then.)

        In 1966 I started my career as an illustrator, I was making $3 and hour. I got engaged that Christmas with a $400 diamond of my fiance. We got married the following September, honeymooned in Vermont for a couple of weeks and had a pretty decent apartment for $70 a month. In the spring of 1968 we bought a new Plymouth Valiant for $2600. Gasoline was still 28 cents a gallon in some places, but in others was around 30 cents. I insisted we live on only what I made and bank what she earned.

        We planned on having a baby and when my wife was in her fourth month of pregnancy, we agreed it was time for her to quit and stay home. The little guy came along in October of 69... my wife was in the hospital for three days and the bill came to an "outlandish" $400 or so. My insurance paid for all of it except the $6 for the "phone in the room".

        In March of 1970 we bought our first home and on the very day of the closing I got laid off from my job. We were in the midst of Nixon's "wage/price freeze" and my employer had lost several contracts. (It was at this time I began wondering about "Republicans" of which I was a dedicated follower.) Prices everywhere started going up: gasoline, services, groceries, etc. The war in Vietnam was going nuts and the whole of political American was in turmoil.

        But despite all of that we got through it. I freelanced for a couple of months, did okay. After being "understanding" for those two months I decided it was time to return to my old job and I went in and had a coversation with the owners, convincing them in just a few minutes that the reason they had certain "clients", instead of the competion, was that they had "ME".... that could change though, if they preferred. I stayed with them for three more years, was promoted to dept manager.

        In 1973 I went to Ingersoll-Rand and drove back and forth between Painted Post and Binghamton for nine months. Gasoline was now 34 cents a gallon and bread was 35 cents. The road was mostly two-lane, but I could still do that trip in an hour and a half (75 miles). I drove to and from work, preferring to return to my family each evening and I'd get up at 5:00 AM to make the return to work. But life was good.

        The point is that I've faced plenty of challenges. I've never made big money. Not having a college degree, in my business particularly is a detriment when you work for a narrow-minded company that sees that "piece of paper" as the only gateway to promotion. So, my best year ever was the last year of work in 2000, when I made a whopping $45K... that included my severance pay.

        Life is a challenge, I don't trust the people, especially corporate people, or the government to ever do the right thing. I've spent most of my career trying to keep my employers out of trouble. I don't compromize on my abilities and certainly won't provide any boss or employer less than what is right when it comes to technical manuals or illustrations or other product support issues. I also feel I owe my fellow workers as much as I can give them, and that often doesn't go down very well with the bosses. Perhaps its just working in a corporate structure like that that has "educated" me, but unless you have been there, you really have no idea whatsoever as to how much cheating of the employee that goes on. Everything is for the management, all "the cream" as we used to call it, is there for them.... and usually it is at a serious cost to the employee. Even when things are free to the employees, the management will find a way to ensure that they won't get it, and I have a lot of examples of that.

        So YES, absolutely... minimum wage has fallen far, far, far behind in accordance with what it used to be.

        CWS

        Comment


        • #34
          Re: Fiscal Cliff?

          I'm never drawn to the idea that minimum wage should follow certain ties to cost of living. I say this because minimum wage dumps the uneducated at a set price.

          Minimum wage used to be designed for the bottom tier of employment. Can't help that so many have chosen not to educate their BRAINS to be struggling on what minimum wage offers, which is nothing.

          Any of you who disagree,


          Think back when you was in high school with life ahead of you. You either make a run in life for yourself to better your stance, do better than the people that brought you into this world, make the best of your life.

          Unfortunately too many want the handout, don't want what's difficult to obtain as they bury themselves by excuse.


          So when I see a 66 year old woman working the cash register at speedway, and she's complaining?


          Personal responsibility should be what stares at you in the mirror.
          Northern Kentucky Plumbers Twitter Feed | Plumbing Videos

          Comment


          • #35
            Re: Fiscal Cliff?

            Originally posted by DUNBAR PLUMBING View Post
            I'm never drawn to the idea that minimum wage should follow certain ties to cost of living. I say this because minimum wage dumps the uneducated at a set price.

            Minimum wage used to be designed for the bottom tier of employment. Can't help that so many have chosen not to educate their BRAINS to be struggling on what minimum wage offers, which is nothing.

            Any of you who disagree,


            Think back when you was in high school with life ahead of you. You either make a run in life for yourself to better your stance, do better than the people that brought you into this world, make the best of your life.

            Unfortunately too many want the handout, don't want what's difficult to obtain as they bury themselves by excuse.


            So when I see a 66 year old woman working the cash register at speedway, and she's complaining?


            Personal responsibility should be what stares at you in the mirror.
            I do disagree with some of your observations, and I would hold off being so judgemental until I had more information. There are plenty of folks who are up in age and finding themselves having to go back to work for any number of reasons such as losing their retirement nest egg in the stock market or to some scam scumbags. Young folks looking to build a good future and middle age folks looking to make ends meet after suffering a pay freeze or pay cut, can hardly do so as inflation out paces their minimum wage pay. The price of gasoline has more than doubled in recent years, and the price of food and most other consumables is up there too. We can't expect those folks doing minimum wage jobs which are necessary to our society, to work at a loss. I would agree with you in part if inflation was not so much of a problem. Just wait until the new taxes and obamacare kick in, I think we will see more unemployment and more problems beyond minimum pay arguments. Lastly, to assume that the only folks who work minimum wage jobs are uneducated, or unmotivated is both unfair, and without a doubt inaccurate. Frank

            Comment


            • #36
              Re: Fiscal Cliff?

              Just wait until the new taxes and obamacare kick in,
              Frank, the CBO (Congressional Budget Office) has said that the new health care plan will actually save money,at least according to this article by the AARP.

              Health Care Reform and Medicare Myths vs. Facts - AARP
              ---------------
              Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
              ---------------
              “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
              ---------
              "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
              ---------
              sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

              Comment


              • #37
                Re: Fiscal Cliff?

                Bob, I find the wording in myth 7 interesting and misleading. That article was aimed at seniors and in my opinion biased. Private insurers will be forced to insure more people for a longer time who don't pay into the system, such as my daughters until age 26. Do you seriously think they will do that at a loss to profit? Rates will go way up and not only am I paying over a thousand to keep my current insurance, my copays have doubled. I think a lot of folks who thought this was a nonissure will have a rude awakening as it goes into affect.
                Let's not forget we are over 16 trillion in the hole, there is no money to pay for all this coverage except from taxpayers.

                Comment


                • #38
                  Re: Fiscal Cliff?

                  Dunbar,

                  I agree with you, but "minimum wage" is only a small example (and perhaps just an example of the trend of de-valueing the working class) of what wage earners have had to suffer. "Minimum Wage" was never a "living wage"... it was never meant to be a living wage either. But, it is a starting point for almost everyone and I totally agree that some middle-aged (or any older-aged) person working at a so-called entry-level or minimum wage job shouldn't be complaining or expecting anything different. No person, or company for that matter, can afford to give increased pay based on one's age. That's not practical and it certainly isn't deserving as "age" is absolutely no measure of a person's ability, ambition, or productivity.

                  But, if you look at the general trend of earnings to the middle class or working class, you will see that it has neither kept pace with inflation nor the increased earnings of management and certainly no where near the increased profits that go to the top 2%. Today we live in an age in which management doesn't just make a few thousand more than thier subordinates, they often make two or three times more. Today, we pay the "bean counters" tremendously more than we pay the workers who are making the components and products that they are counting. Value of "ability" and "talent" and "productivity" takes a backseat to those who manage the numbers of their output. As a society, as a leader of industrial capacity, this kind of valuation simply cannot sustain itself and the last couple of decades have proven that.

                  I'm in the midst of Winston Churchill's "The Rights of the People". A hard read because it's mostly a collection of his speeches made in 1908, when he was a "Minister" working for the Britain's House of Commons. At the time there was a political fight between the House of Commons and the House of Lords in which the latter was trying to take control of the newly presented budget which was yet to be voted on. It was a time very much like now, in which the aristocrats were attempting to curtail the budget in thier favor and deny the working middle class any favor. Winston presented numbers showing that while the working class had their taxes and other expenses burdened almost ten-fold in their past 20 years, their salaries and benefits had increased only by a very minimal percentage.

                  He stated at the time, that a country (Britain in particular) needed to ensure that "the wealth on which we live, must come from the country's pockets", not as we here have been doing, making our profits from investing in foriegn production. Furthermore, was the factual statement that "wealth" is obtained in "only two ways": "production" or "plunder".

                  Our economic and industrial leaders seem to have made the decision to go for "plunder"... as they have plundered the jobs of the working class in favor of investing in the foreign manufacturing and production. That has left many of us with no alternative but to buy the cheap imports which our leaders rake maximum profits from. In so doing, they increase thier riches, spend it only to control the government which in turn favors thier venture which disfavoring the taxpayers. Thus our wages fall by c omparison, our taxes and other expenses go up and we fall further and further behind, while they maker more and more $$.

                  While all that works for a relatively short term, it renders the country's growth almost dead. It raises actual inflation, and increases the nation's indebtedness. It reaches a point where that we are now at, where the debt is so high that the country is about to falter. And the rich, well they have exacted control to the point where it cannot be reversed, as they and the political machine they have purchased exact uncompromising control over the major government body, and a major News network, as well as a controlling faction of the Supreme Court.

                  So, this isn't new by any means. It is only the latest in story of the rich over influencing a country and it's values for the sake of profiteering from their very own countrymen. This "Fiscal Cliff" will not even pinch the top 2% enough to wake them up from thier greed. It will however hurt the rest of us in many different ways. And for some it will be excruciatingly clear that they just tripped over the line of destitution, because without some extreme turnaround, next week they will find no money for groceries, for rent, for heat, or for transportation to even look for a job or pay their phone bill.

                  CWS
                  Last edited by CWSmith; 12-30-2012, 06:48 PM.

                  Comment


                  • #39
                    Re: Fiscal Cliff?

                    Franki,

                    I disagree with you on gasoline and inflation. I can't put my hands on the proper link at the moment, but gasoline was higher under "little Bush" than it is now, so it certainly hasn't doubled in recent years, unless your understanding of "recent" reflects back to the 90's. (There was a "drop" at the very end of the 2007/8 which goes well with my previously stated "political control" by the the oil companies, which favored "Republican" in both 2000 and 2008; but, the price was higher just prior to this short "election" period. Apparenty you haven't been buying gas in the last month, but don't worry, it is turning around.

                    Also, you should know that gasoline production here in the U.S. is significantly higher now than it was in 2008. It is forecast to raise the U.S. to the top oil producer within this decade.

                    Of course, we will not see much of a price decrease because of this. We see a marked number of pollution cases coming up, with probably a lot of ruined lives and lands. But, the oil companies will see continued big profits, continued escape from legislation, and we'll see OUR natural resources, taken from OUR back yards, being sent to foreign countries. Big oil will make the profits and we'll be left with the destroyed aquifers, cancers, and other environmental burden. Oil employees and cleanup workers will do well but manufacturing will not return, nor will Mom and Pop stores in your area, unless perhaps they cater to oil field workers. Our local laundremats are like that... but I've been told you don't want to put your clothes in one of those washers, afterwards. Local village is seeing crime go up, especially bar brawls, but hey those guys work hard, so they play hard... problem too is that none of those guys are from around here, they travel from one field to the next (So much for all the so-called local jobs that oil and gas production was supposed to bring to our area.)

                    The "jury" is still out on the "Affordable Health Care Act"... Hey the hospitals across NY's Southern Tier are all expanding and we've built some really fine looking pharmacies in the last few years. No factories or business office buildings though. My company just decided to drop it's retirement healthcare plan, so in one more day, that's all gone. But at least they're going to pay part of our search for an independant plan... which is mighty nice of them. (I did fine one, and actually it looks like I'm going to be a $100 or so ahead... we shall see.)

                    My son works for a hospital, their health insurance is being downgraded too, but only to something that looks like what the rest of us have. I never could quite grasp how a company or a union could insist that healthcare should be "free" for them, while the rest of us working slobs have to pay for it. Guess if you got the numbers, you can pretty much get "free" if you push hard enough... problem is that somehow, somewhere, somebody has to pay for the bill. Such benefits always gets passed on to somebody.

                    CWS
                    Last edited by CWSmith; 12-30-2012, 07:18 PM.

                    Comment


                    • #40
                      Re: Fiscal Cliff?

                      CWS, I swear this mode of communication has it's limits. You write such well thought out and wordy posts, then you write something like this, "This "Fiscal Cliff" will not even pinch the top 2% enough to wake them up from thier greed" and it makes me wonder if you are a fair thinking man? Who are you to say or assume that the top 2% are greedy? That top 2% may include a majority of fine people who do all sorts of generous and charitable things, I just don't know.
                      Here in my part of CT (we have zone pricing) regular gas is around $3.85, that's twice what I believe our economy can bear. I'm sure some of the folks here remember when I suggested President Bush was out of touch with the common man when he was asked about the high price of gas and responded "is that so?. I found his arrogance as distasteful as President Obama's.
                      I retired from Verizon with full medical, dental and a company paid pension. The pension for new hires is over and gone, so are other benefits. I don't see our way of life improving, or our personal finances getting any better. I am pretty sure the debt will bury us since there seems to be no urgency by our legislators to take the necessary steps in paying it down and balancing our budget.
                      My personal belief is that not only can we not afford healthcare for everyone at this point in time, but that it would be necessary for many people to do without certain life saving or life prolonging procedures in order to be fiscally responsible. I know that sounds could and cruel, but the money is not there, the answer is not in taxing the middle class or the rich in my opinion. Tell me if I am wrong in that taxing the rich at a higher rate( whoever they are deemed to be) will only run the gov't for 12 days? Seems to me that much, much more needs to be done and sooner than later.
                      Last edited by Frankiarmz; 12-30-2012, 08:07 PM.

                      Comment


                      • #41
                        Re: Fiscal Cliff?

                        [QUOTE=Frankiarmz;389650]CWS,
                        I retired from Verizon with full medical, dental and a company paid pension.
                        My personal belief is that not only can we not afford healthcare for everyone at this point in time, but that it would be necessary for many people to do without certain life saving or life prolonging procedures in order to be fiscally responsible. I know that sounds could and cruel,

                        Yes it does sound cruel Frank but you sound like Peter Sellers in a 1960`s film called "I allright Jack" where he was feathering his own nest as a uion leader for the workers he was supposed to represent and they could stave for all he cared you admit you have full medical, dental and a company pension you have nothing to complain about you are better off than the majority of people your better off than I am where I have to wait till I am 65 even though my body is stuffed to retire as I don`t have $ 600,000.00 dollar sitting in my superanuation fund and will have to rely on a part government pension.
                        From reading your posts you were born in 1953 that makes you 59 so I am guessing you retired around 55 do you get any government benefits on top of what you are getting and what age do the ordinary plebs in the US retire and can they access a government pension if it is so bad Frank I suggest you could work till you are 65 and beyond.

                        Tony
                        Last edited by AFM; 12-31-2012, 07:59 AM.

                        Comment


                        • #42
                          Re: Fiscal Cliff?

                          Well, they did it. Waited till the very last second so to speak but they managed to get a piece of legislation through the Senate at 89 to 9 I think it was in favor of a compromise bill that now goes to the House who is in no hurry to vote on it. The want to dangle that sword over our heads to let us know who has the final say I guess for a little while longer. Maybe that was part of the 'deal' struck.

                          The bill also nixes a pay raise for Congress which was probably a bargaining chip they threw in so they could look like they cared and were doing their part to keep costs under control. A negotiating tactic used all the time in collective bargaining agreements by both sides.

                          At least that is what is reported in the NY Times this morning.




                          I just found this site this morning, looks interesting but I am wary.

                          https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/how-why/introduction

                          You can start or sign on to online petitions on various topics like gun control, stopping the pay raises for Congress, etc. Got to remember that its hosted on the White House website, so it probably is slanted somehow in their favor. Seems to be aimed at the younger crowd. A good number have to do with guns from both sides of the argument. Some are close to the requried 25,000 signatures to gain consideration by the White House staff and offical response from the White House.

                          then there is this one which has exceeded the required 25k signatures:
                          Restrict pay for all Senators and Congress to $75,000 for a period
                          of 3 years to repay the National deficit.

                          Restrict pay for Senators and Congress to $75,000 for a period of
                          3 years to repay the National deficit. Report all Senators and members
                          of Congress who do not support this so voters will know who supports
                          the American people for re-election purposes.


                          or this one which also has met the number of votes

                          we petition the obama administration to:
                          Support and fully endorse the National Rifle Association's
                          "National School Shield" Program.

                          We The People, ask the Obama administration to endorse and
                          fully implement the National Rifle Association's National
                          School Shield Program.
                          And no, I have not signed or created any petitions there. I am still investigating it and hesitant to do so until I know more, and doubt I ever will.
                          I just found it interesting in how public input/feedback to government is changing in the 21st century.

                          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mdco...layer_embedded
                          Last edited by Bob D.; 01-01-2013, 08:47 AM.
                          ---------------
                          Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
                          ---------------
                          “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
                          ---------
                          "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
                          ---------
                          sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

                          Comment


                          • #43
                            Re: Fiscal Cliff?

                            Good post,Bob D. Did you know that the average cost per year for each Senator is $2,000,000. I don't know what it is for each Rep, but you can be sure it isn't far behind. Even if it is half of the Senator's, that would still total to over $650,000,000 a year for them to accomplish nothing. (That cost includes their aides, etc)

                            Comment


                            • #44
                              Re: Fiscal Cliff?

                              No, I did no know those stiffs were soaking us for that much. Talk about a leak in the payroll.
                              There needs to be a way to make serving in Congress something you do for the people of your state,
                              not as a career so get a lifetime salary and health care plus pension for only 8 years work if you want to call it that.
                              ---------------
                              Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
                              ---------------
                              “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
                              ---------
                              "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
                              ---------
                              sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

                              Comment


                              • #45
                                Re: Fiscal Cliff?

                                Not so fast! Still has to pass the house and with any luck there are enough concerned legislators to hold out for spending reform and entitlement cuts above tax increases and more out of control spending.

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