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Take Action:Send a Message to President Obama, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and House Speaker John Boehner: No Budget Deal


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JL
- 583 days ago - bernie.org
At a time when the middle class is disappearing, poverty is increasing and the gap between the rich and everyone else is growing wider, we demand that the federal budget not be balanced on the backs of the most vulnerable people in our country.



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JL A. (275)
Tuesday March 26, 2013, 9:00 am
Send a Message to President Obama, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and House Speaker John Boehner: No Budget Deal on the Backs of the Elderly, the Children, the Sick and the Poor.

At a time when the middle class is disappearing, poverty is increasing and the gap between the rich and everyone else is growing wider, we demand that the federal budget not be balanced on the backs of the most vulnerable people in our country.

A federal budget that reduces the deficit by cutting cost-of-living adjustments for Social Security and disabled veterans, raises the Medicare eligibility age and lowers tax rates for the most profitable corporations in this country is not a grand bargain. It is a bad bargain.

We oppose the so-called “chained CPI,” a way to measure inflation and consumer prices designed to cut benefits for Social Security recipients, disabled veterans and their survivors.

We are strongly opposed to benefit cuts to Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, education, and the needs of our veterans.

We demand a budget that puts millions of Americans back to work in decent paying jobs.

We demand a budget that makes sure that the wealthiest Americans and most profitable corporations pay their fair share.
 

Shirley B. (5)
Tuesday March 26, 2013, 9:37 am
N&S. Thanks, JL
 

Angelika R. (142)
Tuesday March 26, 2013, 9:40 am
Yep, one of those again JL ! (my to do folder ;-) Thx, done already.
 

JL A. (275)
Tuesday March 26, 2013, 10:18 am
You are welcome Shirley and Angelika.
You cannot currently send a star to Shirley because you have done so within the last day.
You cannot currently send a star to Angelika because you have done so within the last day.
 

Sue H. (7)
Tuesday March 26, 2013, 10:21 am
Noted and SO signed, thanks.
 

JL A. (275)
Tuesday March 26, 2013, 10:25 am
You are welcome Sue.You cannot currently send a star to Sue because you have done so within the last day.
 

Kit B. (276)
Tuesday March 26, 2013, 12:56 pm

Got this early in the morning...calls made, letters emailed and sent out on snail mail.

Calls and letters to:
President Obama, Senators, John Cornyn and Ted Cruz, House Rep: Mike Burgess - also tweeted about 300 in Congress with Bernie's message.
 

JL A. (275)
Tuesday March 26, 2013, 1:02 pm
Thanks for setting the example all of us is capable of following Kit! You cannot currently send a star to Kit because you have done so within the last day.
 

Terry V. (30)
Tuesday March 26, 2013, 5:11 pm
S&N THANKS!!!
 

JL A. (275)
Tuesday March 26, 2013, 6:58 pm
You are welcome Terry! You cannot currently send a star to Terry because you have done so within the last day.
 

John B. (173)
Tuesday March 26, 2013, 7:49 pm
Thanks J.L. for posting the link. Signed, message sent and post noted.
"Thank you for signing the petition!"
 

JL A. (275)
Tuesday March 26, 2013, 8:15 pm
You are welcome John. You cannot currently send a star to John because you have done so within the last day.
 

Sara W. (110)
Tuesday March 26, 2013, 11:10 pm
Signed. Thanks!
 

Allan Yorkowitz (446)
Wednesday March 27, 2013, 2:36 pm
message sent
 

Mike M. (55)
Wednesday March 27, 2013, 2:53 pm
N&S&FB
 

Diane O. (161)
Wednesday March 27, 2013, 3:40 pm
Reuters) - Most Americans in the United States define themselves as being part of the middle class, but there are differing opinions of what that means.

President Barack Obama talks of "middle class tax cuts" that would apply to families who earn up to $250,000, which would cover all but the top 3 percent of U.S. households.

Many Republicans point out that location and expenses can affect class status -- a family earning $250,000 in a high-cost location like Manhattan, for example, may not consider themselves rich.

Economists say there is no specific criteria for defining the middle class, though income level is the most common way of breaking it down.

Below are some of the ways the middle class is defined:


INCOME

Economists generally align the group according to earnings, even if there is no standard established range.

"Most people tend to think of themselves as middle class unless they're (billionaire investor) Warren Buffett or really poor," said J.D. Foster, an economist and senior fellow at the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank.

Foster regards the upper 20 percent of earners as "upper income" and the lower 20 percent as "lower income." He regards the 60 percent in the middle as middle class, with household incomes roughly between $25,000 and $100,000.

Median household income in the United States was $52,175 in 2008, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

EDUCATION

Education can be another defining factor, as it is often correlated with income.

Some academics divide the middle class into an upper bracket that includes professionals and middle managers who hold postgraduate degrees and often earn more than $100,000 and a less affluent lower middle class that typically has some college education with household incomes around the national median.

These two groups account for roughly 45 percent of the population, depending on the model.

Blue-collar and clerical workers in the working class typically have a high school education, and many may describe themselves as "middle class" even though their incomes may be a fraction of those earned by professionals.

The poorest 12 to 20 percent of Americans often have not finished high school.

Profession and education level, however, does not always correlate with household income. A household with two blue-collar earners, for example, could take in more income than one headed by a single professional.

DICTIONARY DEFINITION

The American Heritage Dictionary defines the middle class as follows: "The socioeconomic class between the working class and the upper class, usually including professionals, highly skilled laborers, and lower and middle management."

Most Americans, however, generally consider the United States to be a classless society and associate the group with factors ranging from income and occupation to hobbies and lifestyles. Doctors, teachers, lawyers and plumbers can all belong.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2010/09/14/us-usa-taxes-middleclass-idUSTRE68D3QD20100914
 

Emma S. (227)
Wednesday March 27, 2013, 3:48 pm
Done! Thank you.
 

JL A. (275)
Wednesday March 27, 2013, 3:52 pm
Thank you Ms. O for posting a portion of the data that fully supports this petition's need (preserving what the middle class has worked for and been promised) that were not a part of the Ryan plan. It is so rare that you are actually topical that I take the time to congratulate you for finding something that supports a posted petition.
 

Diane O. (161)
Wednesday March 27, 2013, 3:54 pm
My pleasure....you can send me my green star now.
 

JL A. (275)
Wednesday March 27, 2013, 4:26 pm
Had you said you signed the petition or something original as you posted someone else's words, you would have met my minimum criteria for giving stars or at least a polite thank you, demonstrating some respect, as expected by the code of conduct, Ms O you would have received one. Thank you for identifying they were someone else's words BTW.
 

Vicky P. (466)
Wednesday March 27, 2013, 5:34 pm
noted and signed
 

Heidi Aubrey (16)
Wednesday March 27, 2013, 8:17 pm
Signed and noted.
 

Robert O. (12)
Wednesday March 27, 2013, 8:36 pm
Thank you for signing the petition!

Thanks JL.
 

JL A. (275)
Wednesday March 27, 2013, 8:48 pm
You are welcome Robert.
You cannot currently send a star to Vicky because you have done so within the last day.
You cannot currently send a star to Heidi because you have done so within the last day.
You cannot currently send a star to Robert because you have done so within the last day.
 

Marie W. (66)
Wednesday March 27, 2013, 10:29 pm
S&N
 

JL A. (275)
Wednesday March 27, 2013, 10:31 pm
http://factcheck.org/2008/01/defining-the-middle-class/
Defining the ‘Middle Class’
Posted on January 24, 2008

Q: Is there a standard, accepted definition of what constitutes the "middle class"?

A: No, there isn’t. "Middle class" means different things to different people – and politicians.

FULL QUESTION

Is there a standard, accepted definition of what constitutes the "middle class"? Politicians are fond of talking about how the middle class will be affected by policies and laws, but rarely do they define who is actually part of that group.

FULL ANSWER

There is no standard definition, and in fact, an overwhelming majority of Americans say they are "middle class" or "upper-middle class" or "working class" in public opinion polls. Hardly anybody considers themselves "lower class" or "upper class" in America.

It’s possible to come up with a definition of what constitutes "middle income," but it will depend on how large a slice of the middle one prefers. If we look at U.S. Census Bureau statistics, which divide household income into quintiles, we could say that the "middle" quintile, or 20 percent, might be the "middle" class. In 2006, the average income for households in that middle group was $48,561 and the upper limit was $60,224. But we could just as reasonably use another Census figure, median family income. In 2006, the median – or "middle" – income for a family of four was $70,354. Half of all four-person families made more; half made less.

Journalist Chris Baker examined the ambiguous meaning of the term "middle class" in a 2003 Washington Times story. He, too, found no generally accepted definition, but he did get this broad one from Jared Bernstein, an economist at the liberal Economic Policy Institute: "There are working families who can pay their bills, but they have to really think about such minimal expenditures as picking up a pizza after work, going to the movies, making a long-distance telephone call. They may have some investments, but they depend on each paycheck for their well-being."

But others could have different definitions. Baker interviewed a man who earned about $100,000 a year and a woman who made $35,000, both of whom said they were middle class.

Public opinion polls show how slippery the term can be. An Oct. 2007 poll by the Kaiser Family Foundation, Harvard School of Public Health and National Public Radio asked 1,527 adults what income level makes a family of four middle class. About 60 percent said a family earning $50,000 or $60,000 fit that description. But 42 percent answered an income of $40,000 and 48 percent said $80,000 were both middle class.

Other polls suggest that 90 percent or more of Americans consider themselves to be "middle class" or "upper-middle class" or "working class." An April 2007 poll by CBS News found that of 994 adults surveyed only 2 percent said they were "upper class," and 7 percent said they were "lower class." In another poll, taken by Gallup/USA Today in May 2006, 1 percent said they were "upper class," and 6 percent said they were "lower class." Interestingly, since 12.3 percent of Americans were living below the official federal poverty level in 2006, these poll findings suggest many who are officially poor still consider themselves to be "middle class" or "working class."

So what do politicians mean when they say "the middle class"? Good question. Each politician may be talking about a different group of Americans, but the message many voters hear is that the politician is talking about them.

For example, Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards calls for "tax breaks to honor and strengthen three pillars of America’s middle class: savings, work, and families." One of his proposals is to expand a tax credit to give dollar-for-dollar matches on savings up to $500 a year. Some version of that credit would be available to families earning up to $75,000.

Republican candidate Mitt Romney, meanwhile, has proposed eliminating "taxes on dividends, capital gains, and interest on middle class families." He defines "middle class" as anyone with an adjusted gross income of under $200,000 – and acknowledges that such a proposal would affect "over 95 percent of American families."

- Lori Robertson
Sources

U.S. Census Bureau. 2006 American Community Survey. Income tables, accessed 23 Jan. 2008.

NPR, the Kaiser Family Foundation, and the Harvard School of Public Health. Survey: Public Views on SCHIP Reauthorization. Survey conducted Oct. 8-13, 2007. 17 Oct. 2007.

Survey by CBS News, April 9-April 12, 2007. Retrieved 23 Jan. 2008 from the iPOLL Databank, The Roper Center for Public Opinion Research, University of Connecticut.

Survey by USA Today and Gallup Organization, May 5-May 7, 2006. Retrieved 23 Jan. 2008 from the iPOLL Databank, The Roper Center for Public Opinion Research, University of Connecticut.

Baker, Chris. "What is middle class?; Income isn’t necessarily sole measure." The Washington Times, 30 Nov. 2003.
 

Lynn D. (0)
Thursday March 28, 2013, 3:31 am
Hard working people are totally being destroyed by Obama and his politics, thanks!
 

John Gregoire (258)
Thursday March 28, 2013, 5:31 am
Cocnur with Lynn. The policies of this administration are killing retirees. The artificial low of interest rates has decimated savings, militray retiree healthcare is now more expensive and getting worse, It takes a retirement plus social security to reach a rung just above the recognized poverty level! Signed with pleasure.
 

John Gregoire (258)
Thursday March 28, 2013, 6:08 am
Sorry for the typos above. Just after reading through CARE2 I turned to yahoo to lose my cookies over Mr. obama's latest budget busting perq! See:
http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/ticket/rep-king-r-ia-criticizes-obama-girls-vacation-220120129--politics.html
 

Arielle S. (314)
Thursday March 28, 2013, 6:33 am
I'm not sure how you can blame Obama for how working people and retired people are hurting - it's the GOP who want to keep giving tax breaks to millionaires while at the same time cutting every social service that helps those who are not millionaires. If the GOP had their way, you wouldn't have Social Security, Medicare or any other benefit. I live in a small town in the south where most of the people are probably living below the poverty line - $250,000 a year would be a fortune to these folks (and me). So, "middle class" is all relative - but the budget is going to affect the vulnerable first, most and always.
 

Robert K. (31)
Thursday March 28, 2013, 6:43 am
It takes real intiative to always be wrong as we have seen from Diane today. For the first time in memory she was right about something, but good ol' John G manages to keep up with the never right about anything gig.

BTW, interest rates have nothing to do with the president, it's your "free enterprise" Fed made up of profit making banks giving themselves near zero borrowing whill charging up to 29.99% credit card rates.
 

Robert K. (31)
Thursday March 28, 2013, 6:45 am
VBTW Diane, I actually did send you a star. When you get it right you earn it. ;o)
 

JL A. (275)
Thursday March 28, 2013, 7:20 am
You cannot currently send a star to Robert because you have done so within the last day.
 

Past Member (0)
Thursday March 28, 2013, 12:28 pm
Can we all agree that we can save $200 million by not making pennies and nickles? And then make a smaller/cheaper quarter? And we might even get to the point we can make the dollar into a coin? The only contentious point is I would like .002% of the savings, but only for 3 years.
 

JL A. (275)
Thursday March 28, 2013, 12:31 pm
'Makes cents' John.
 

Mary Alexander (23)
Thursday March 28, 2013, 12:40 pm
I have signed thank you all for doing so too.
 

Judith Hand (59)
Thursday March 28, 2013, 1:43 pm
Noted and gratefully signed. Good to learn about Bernie Sanders' career on the site, thanks.
 

Birgit W. (147)
Thursday March 28, 2013, 1:52 pm
Thanks
 

Sandra Patterson (60)
Thursday March 28, 2013, 4:16 pm
signed and noted
 

JL A. (275)
Thursday March 28, 2013, 5:24 pm
You are welcome Birgit and Jude.
 

Lois Jordan (56)
Thursday March 28, 2013, 5:40 pm
Gladly signed, sent & noted. Thank you, JL.
 

JL A. (275)
Thursday March 28, 2013, 6:06 pm
You are welcome Lois. You cannot currently send a star to Lois because you have done so within the last day.
 

Anna Undebeck (205)
Friday March 29, 2013, 5:55 am
Noted and signed!!! Thanks JL
 

James Maynard (67)
Friday March 29, 2013, 3:10 pm
Think I signed this already, but am not
taking any chances if it will help.
 

Marilyn K. (51)
Friday March 29, 2013, 3:17 pm
Noted & Signed - The game is power, greed and self serving politicans. The Middle Class is the captive audience that sits back and waits to perhaps win a door prize.
 

JL A. (275)
Friday March 29, 2013, 6:23 pm
You are welcome Anna. You cannot currently send a star to James because you have done so within the last day.
 
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