Social Security!!! Ex-Cop Christopher Dorner!!! Gas prices! Who can afford to go ANYWHERE?!? Deregulation!!! Small businesses have turned into mini-casinos!!! The NRA has an ENEMIES List?!? Annnd...New films and TV stuff!!!
The first thing we're going to cover here is the subject of "Social Security". I'm involved with several things. Writing this blog, acting, judging films and am a proud member of the "Pacific Pioneer Broadcasters". I am also on the "Board of Directors" of that fine organization. As is a woman named Kay Henley who sent me a rant about Social Security and people who think that those who get a monthly Social Security check are people who are somehow getting something "free" and in essence, "ripping off" tax payers like you and me. There's also talk about how these Social Security payments are in some way responsible for the financial mess we're in.
I don't know if Kay wrote this rant, but I'm about to print word for word what she sent me.
"The only thing wrong with the government's calculation of available "Social Security" is they forgot to figure in the people who died before they ever collected a Social Security check!!! Where did that money go?
Remember, not only did you and I contribute to Social Security but our employer did, too. It totaled 15% of our income before taxes. If you averaged only $30K over your working life, that's close to $220,500. Did you see where the Government paid in one single penny?
We are talking about the money you and your employer put in a Government bank to insure you and I that we would have a retirement check from the money WE put in, NOT the Government. Now they are calling the money we put in an 'entitlement' when we reach the age to take it back. If you calculate the future invested value of $4,500 per year (yours & your employer's contribution) at a simple 5% interest (less than what the government pays on the money that it borrows) after 49 years of working, you'd have $892,919.98.
If you took out only 3% per year, you'd receive $26,787.60 per year and it would last better than 30 years (until you're 95 if you retire at age 65) and that's with no interest paid on that final amount on deposit! If you bought an annuity and it paid 4% per year, you'd have a lifetime income of $2,976.40 per month.
Another thing...If a woman had a husband who died before the age of 65, before one percent of his Social Security could be drawn, and if the woman worked all her life and is drawing 100% on her own Social Security, his S.S. money never had one cent drawn from it...so...where did it go????
THE FOLKS IN WASHINGTON HAVE PULLED OFF A BIGGER PONZI SCHEME THAN BERNIE MADOFF EVER DID!!!
Entitlement my foot, we paid cash for our Social Security insurance! Just because they borrowed the money for other government spending, doesn't make our benefits some kind of charity or handout! Remember Congressional benefits? Free healthcare, outrageous retirement packages, 67 paid holidays, three weeks paid vacation, unlimited paid sick days.
Now THAT'S welfare, and they have the nerve to call our Social Security retirement payments 'entitlements'???
We're 'broke' and we can't help our own seniors, veterans, orphans, or homeless. Yet in the last few months we have provided aid to Haiti, Chile and Turkey. And now, Pakistan...home of bin Laden. Literally, BILLIONS of DOLLARS!!! And they can't help our own citizens in New York and New Jersey? Our retired seniors living on a 'fixed S.S. income' receive no additional federal aid nor do they get any financial breaks, while our government and religious organizations pour hundreds of billions of $$$ and tons of food to foreign countries!
They call Social Security and Medicare an 'entitlement' even though most of us have been paying for it all our working lives! Now, when it's time to collect, the government is running out of money. Why did the government borrow from the Social Security money in the first place? It was supposed to be in a locked box, not part of the general fund.
Sad, isn't it?"
Sad indeed, Kay Henley.
Kay, I'm going to add only thing to what you sent me. "AMERICA FIRST"!!! I use those two words at the end of each blog I write.
Before I get to our next subjects, I want all of you readers to know that I tried to reach Kay Henley so I could find out if she wrote this rant or if she could tell me who did. In the final analysis, I guess it really doesn't matter because the rant speaks for itself. And yes, if you have any thoughts and or comments about this rant, please write to me at email@example.com and I will respond to you ASAP.
But for now, ONWARD!!!
#2: Ex-Cop Christopher Dorner! He was the reason the ratings were down for President Obama's State of the Union address. Hey, I had my eyes glued to what was going on at Big Bear, too. He is now just another dead murderer. Good thing, too. We'd hate to have more nervous LAPD guys shooting a bunch of bullets at two women who were simply trying to deliver some newspapers.
#3: Gas Hikes! If you are living somewhere where the cheapest gas prices are less than four dollars and ten cents per gallon, you are a very lucky person. I mean, the way these prices are being jacked up, we will soon be at the point where most of us won't be able to afford driving anywhere that's more than 20 miles from where we live. Oh, yeah! Let's give those greedy bastard oil barons MORE tax breaks, right?
#4: Deregulation! I bring this up because of a great column I read in today's L.A. Times about how deregulation involving phone companies and cable companies has led to a royal screwing of consumers. Yes, consumers like you and me. The argument is always posed that deregulation will result in lower prices for everyone and everytime that is said is something that we end up learning is just another lie! A very expensive lie! Those of us who are no longer in the radio business learned a long time ago what deregulation did to THAT business!
#5: Many small businesses have turned into mini-casinos. Am I the only one who has noticed this? Scratcher tickets, lottery tickets, etc. in places where you buy milk, gasoline, soft drinks, liquor, etc., etc. Am I the only one who thinks we might have been better off if things like that were still illegal except for places like Vegas, Reno and Atlantic City? In unison, now...Hmmmmm...
#6: The NRA has an ENEMIES List? I'm not making this up. I was watching a cable talk show the other night and while I was hearing all these "enemies" that were being listed, I couldn't help but think of our late president, Richard Nixon. And speaking of the NRA....People should have guns in case our government comes after us? First of all, that's a dumb argument. Ain't gonna happen in THIS country. But just for the sake of argument....Do we honestly think we could defend ourselves with a house full of guns if government folks came after us? Ask ex-cop Christopher Dorner how that worked out. I have guns. But not because I think our government might come pounding on my door. Lose the paranoia and enjoy your hunting and or target shooting. Everything else is conversation.
ENTERTAINMENT STUFF: Saw three new films since the last blog. "Side Effects" starring Rooney Mara, Jude Law, Channing Tatum and Catherine Zeta-Jones. I liked this film. A lot. And Rooney Mara, in this film, was/is a lot different than she was in "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo". And what I mean by "different" is in a good way.
"Identity Thief" starring Melissa McCarthy, and Jason Bateman. There was some stuff going on in the middle of this film that made me think I was watching the worst film I had EVER seen, but they got the film back in gear (so to speak) and I walked out of the cineplex feeling that I had been entertained enough to give it a "B-Minus".
"Safe Haven" starring Josh Duhamel, Julianne Hough and some very good supporting players. Ms. Hough, in case you didn't know, is Ryan Seacrest's girlfriend and she got blistered in a review written by Betsy Sharkey in the L.A. Times. I was prepared to (maybe) agree with Ms. Sharkey when I arrived at the cineplex, but when the film ended I thought that Ms. Sharkey was wrong. Dead wrong. I liked the film.
TV stuff: Speaking of Ryan Seacrest....I finally saw an episode of this season's "American Idol". Some bad things have been said about the ratings that show has gotten, but I chalked it off to jealously which has usually been the case. The episode I saw Tuesday night, (except for what new judge Nicki Minaj brought to the table) had me nodding my head. I've been a big fan of this show, but what I saw the other night wasn't the fun show I've been used to seeing over the years.
Meanwhile, shows like ABC's "Revenge", "Nashville" and "Scandal" are knocking my socks off as are shows like TNT's "Southland" and "Dallas" are doing.
Two Sundays from now, the Oscars will be announced. I think "Argo" will win the Best Picture Oscar and I think it should win. I'll tell you my other faves in next week's blog.
THOUGHTS AND OR COMMENTS? Please write to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will respond to you ASAP. Don't write to the blog because there's no way for me to know your email address which means I won't be able to respond to you. I respond to every email unless you identify yourself as "Anonymous". Those emails are ignored.
THE NEXT BLOG? Late Thursday night, February 21 or very early Friday morning, February 22. Unless of course, I end up writing it next Friday evening like I have the last two weeks.
I hope you all have a very pleasant weekend which will include (for many of you) "Presidents' Day" on Monday and maybe "Washington's Birthday" next Friday.
And don't forget....AMERICA FIRST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!