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As the Race to the Bottom Picks Up Speed, Are Americans Finally Fed-Up?

US Politics & Gov't  (tags: government, congress, americans, obama, rich )

- 3034 days ago -
Austerity Budgets are the Norm in State and Federal Budgets Across the Country: While the Rich Get Richer, Everyone Else Suffers


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Jill P (64)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 7:42 am
Obam, His Administration, and a VAST majority of congress vs. 95% of th population.
In other words...the super rich vs. the rest of us...
Are we still watching? Are we going to finally throw the super rich out of office and put human beings in?

Carole Sarcinello (338)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 8:27 am

Yeah, I think a good many Americans ARE fed up . . . but, unfortunately, there are too many who have been duped and who still don't understand that they are cutting their own (and everyone else's) throat by supporting "representatives" who are more allegiant to their corporate owners.

Thanks for posting, Jill.


Jill P (64)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 8:31 am
There are some companies who are fed up with corporate power and welfare. Let's support these good guys and give THEM our business and NOT the bad guys.

Jill P (64)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 8:34 am
This is my third time posting this link.
Cae2 has been running just great the last coule of days.

Jill P (64)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 8:35 am
Third time is NOT a charm.
The site is
You'll have to copy and paste the link.

Carole Sarcinello (338)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 8:36 am
Jill, for the readers here, I'm posting the link you sent out to friends in a personal message earlier:
This is a group started by the "good guys" in business who support democracy and oppose corporate personhood. I learned about them when I had the Citizens United movie House Party. There was a live webcast and they mentioned this group.

Jill P (64)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 8:38 am
Thank you Carole. For some reason I have had a lot of trouble with Care2 lately. The latest is not letting me post live links.

Sheryl G (359)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 8:44 am
Good article Jill, I'll forward along. Now it is hoped that the majority of the American people will begin to understand what is and has been REALLY taking place. They must stop fighting against each other, see that they are all in the same boat; unless of coarse they are in the top 2% or thereabouts.

There are ways to fix this so that the system would be fairer to all, not just some of the people, but those who hold the keys are just doing more of the same, and that is in both parties. We can't have the same people who got us into the mess getting us out of the mess. Is like the Theif that states, oh let me install an alarm system on your house so I can't get back into it. Come on people.....does that not sound stupid? Well what do you think is happening in the Government.

I hope this is the tipping point for if the masses do not fight back they are going to be sucked drier each year. Whether you are a conservative, liberal, or somewhere in the middle, we will all sink or swim on this one, so we best find common ground with each other or we are all going down together.....that is except for the very most rich.

Are you one of them? No, well you best be talking to your friends and neighbors too, for everyone has to get their sleeves rolled up on this one. We can't expect someone else to do it for us, YOU are that someone else.

I have this on my profile page it goes like this:


Everybody, Somebody, Anybody, Nobody

There was an important job to be done and everybody was sure that somebody would do it.
Anybody could of done it but nobody did.
Somebody got angry it was everybody's job.
Everybody thought somebody would do it.
But nobody asked anybody.
It ended up the job wasn't done.
Everybody blamed somebody, when actually nobody, asked anybody.

Ok, get the message?

No matter how young or old you are, no matter your ethnic background the color of the skin, there is something you can do and you MUST do something and keep doing something. Vote smarter, call your Representatives email and snail mail them, tell them the policies that only help the top 2% are not tolerated by you.
Join rallies, sign petitions, join groups that are trying to make change, donate to those fighting for you, let others around you know what is going on, stand on the corner of your local downtown with a sign and talk to people. Make flyers explaining what is going, there is a ton of information on Care2, look into the archival stories. Come up with your own ideas but do something.....don't just bitch became active......that is what activist means.

Sheryl G (359)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 8:54 am
Thanks for the links on the Business For Democracy. I'd been hearing about the Businesses doing that, in fact I placed that on one of my stories concerning the Chamber of Horrors....I mean the Chamber of Commerce, as many of the Businesses were pulling out from the Chamber as it wasn't having their best interest in mind in this large massive take-over.

The smaller business owners are seeing that this is also not good for them either in many ways. With deflated wages the laborers have all they can do to keep a roof over their heads let alone do extra's like rent a surf board at the local surf shop or buy an ice cream from Ben & Jerry's when the staple food needs to be placed on the table.

Ben & Jerry has always been out in the forefront in areas like this but the real small business are suffering too, can't get production loans, fewer customers, an imploding economy is not healthy for anyone except for those who ride the very crest of the wave, then they don't care where or how they make their gains.

Barbara K (61)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 12:31 pm
It's about time we woke up and got up and fight back. The Kochs and other wealthy ones have been sneakily buying up our country and blatantly buying congressmen to further their agenda. It is just plain nuts to cut taxes for the wealthy to break your state (As Walker did to Wisconsin); and then expect people who make much less money to make up for what they did with our tax dollars. They think we are that stupid. It is time to show them how smart we are and that the jig is up, we know what they are doing to us and we are not going to take it any more.

Penelope P (222)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 1:38 pm
Dandelion thankyou
However as long as the press is allowed to demonize unions and the people to abandon them this is bound to happen
As Bertrand Russell pointed out -Unions have been the only means whereby the working man has been able to assure himself some sort of fair provisions- Why on earth do people think they were obstructed so long and so many union members were shot in the past.

This buying of congressmen and politicians is nothing new- Even in England historically it went on and even the voters were bought a short read of Dickens eg "Pickwick Papers","HardTimes","HeartBreak House" ought to convince you of that.
There is also a book entitled"Democracy" by I think Adams which details how it was done in the USA some time ago.
"The Jungle" by Upton Sinclair details what it was like in USA pre Unions in The Chicago meat works.

These are all fictional good reads as well as being factual suggest people supplement their knowledge with them

Robert S (111)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 1:48 pm

It is the duty and a moral obligation of concerned citizens to copy and paste. :)

Robert S (111)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 2:46 pm
Thanks for posting Jill, forwarding Dandelion, and great link Carole. That above is relates to/is part of, that link.

Sharon Karson (82)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 2:55 pm
Jill, thanks for a great article but your comment leaves a bit to be desired. Let's put the blame exactly where it belongs. It is impossible to govern without the consent of the governed as had been proven repeatedly in the middle east. We choose where we get our news. We choose who to believe. We choose who we elect, mostly anyway. We choose to act or to stagnate. We choose to allow "devide and conquer" politics to destroy our unity. Until WE THE PEOPLE make better choices and unite behind necessary changes, nothing will change. Those are the facts, whether we like them or not. So what are WE going to do about it?

Jill P (64)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 2:55 pm
Our FEDERAL government already did the same as Wisconsin and all the other states are now doing. Obama and Congress cut the their own taxes (they are the top 2%) and then turned around and said "We all have to tighten our belts." Really? They loosened theris!
Then Obama and Congress turn around and cut education, Medicare, social services, etc...
We'll see how America really responds. Unfortunately, I think most still are not mad enough to start electing real humans into office. Everyone is going to still vote for whoever is the Democrat and whoever is the Republican. Look at the draconian monsters that were elected recently as governors...Wisconsin, Florida,...America seems to have no learning curve.
We need to demand decent people OUTSIDE the "two" parties. shoe them we can and WILL fire them! There has to be consequences to their actions.
so far I don't know anyone who voted for Obama who would not vote for him in 2012. Same old same old. They keep hoping for different results.

Jill P (64)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 3:03 pm
Sharon, I believe I AM putting the blame where it belongs. We have monsters in office and WE put them there and we will most likely put them there again.
We have to demand beter and have to change our behavior. Why put rich greedy crooks in office then try to fight them to do what we want?
Put humans in office and tell them what we want. The blame is on the poeple for eleting crooks but the crooks are to blame as well. Those rich in Congress and the White Houe are not victims in any way.
So what are WE going to do about it? demand they listen to us and do as we say until November when we can throw some of them out and 2012 when we can trhow the rest out. Why should they listen to our gripes if we don't make them suffer the consequences for ignoring us? The people in Egypt knew Mubarek had to go. He could promise to do better but they knew better. The trash has to go in order to clean up the office.

Sharon Karson (82)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 3:20 pm
I appologize for the misunderstanding. As I read the comment I thought you were blaming the politicians while letting the people who put them in office, and do so again and again, slide. You and I can be easily crushed by the corporate/political machine; we cannot affect change by ourselves. The vast majority of people in this country need to wake up, unite, and fight for what is in our own best interests or there is no hope.


Sharon Karson (82)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 3:28 pm
Jill, you are right about the two party system being flawed. I'm no longer allowed to comment on Organizing for America because I told them they had compromised until I could no longer tell them from the republicans. We need to create or grow an existing third party into a viable political power. It's the only way that I can see to affect the change we need. If anyone has a better idea, I'd love to hear it and support it.

Past Member (0)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 4:11 pm

REINSTATE the original Constitution


Jill P (64)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 5:44 pm
We are on the same exact page Sharon.
Like Dandelion said, the same people who created this mess are not the ones to fix it.
Americans need to grow up and take responsibility for their part in this nightmare. Like I said, I am afraid they will just keep voting party lines while the rich just keep laughing all the way to the banks, and oil companies, and insurance companies,...
No one can tel the parties apart, not without the labels they wear. If I listed issues and actions without the names no one would be able to tell me which is Democrat and which is Republican. Obama has leased more offshore oil drilling than any republican. Since it is such a lose lose situation this is a perfect time for people to support Independent canditates. There are independents on both sides of the spectrum. conservative and progressive independents. If we supported them things can only get better. Sticking with the parties only gets worse.

Toni C (508)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 5:58 pm
Wonderful article, wonderful comments... all of us seem to be on the same page so what is the problem we can't get our political leaders there, too? Quite frankly, I believe it's because none of them have ever gone without food on the table and the better things in life. How can a rich man understnd what a poor man deals with every day?

Sheryl G (359)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 6:01 pm
This is true Jill. I wrote a long informative thread on which the progressives and the conservatives were in an awful state with each other. Yet, both did agree on what I stated, it was because of the common ground that I walked on. Except for a few on the total fringe edges, most people agree on what they would like to see in this Country. But the ones pulling the strings love it when everyone fights with each other and tears at the very fabric of this Country, for all the while we are fighting with each other the Crooks are still getting away with it all.

Carole Sarcinello (338)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 6:04 pm

Now, THAT is one of my pet peeves, Sheryl (Dandelion)!

The more we concentrate on our differences and keep scratching out the eyes of our fellow citizens (who are sharing the small space on our rapidly-sinking boat), the less chance we have of bailing out the water before we all drown!

(And, yeah, you're right -- "THEY" LOVE IT THAT WAY!)


Sheryl G (359)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 6:06 pm
You know Toni, I think it is because they choose not to understand today. I remember the Kennedy's, they had a lot of money too, but they gave back to this Country. I know they were not perfect, no one is, but Ted tried for years to get Health Care for all and unfortunately died at a critical time. The other Kennedy's have done a lot, many social programs started under JFK, his brother Bobby was greatly admired for his compassion to all the people, one of them runs a program to help provide help in the winter for heating. So not all the rich are that way, but more seem to have turned their back on what it means to be a compassionate human being.

Watch that film that Robert left a link to above. It isn't too long but it tells a lot in easy to understand terms.

Past Member (0)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 6:53 pm
Noted, thanks Jill and Dandelion. When you are going downhill as fast as this country is it won't take long for the 98% to reach the bottom. I have certainly been fed up for a long time and done everything I can through petitions and phone calls (no money to give) to express my anger...and will keep doing so.

Past Member (0)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 7:52 pm
When Did Jesus Become a Republican?

Carole Sarcinello (338)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 7:53 pm

I shoulda known you'd post that, John!



Jeannette A (137)
Thursday March 3, 2011, 11:02 pm
We as Americans seem to have very short memories. Those with money oppressing those who only want to work hard, earn a decent wage, have a secure future for their children and see our nation grow to greatness..... this is how it has been for MOST of our history. Take a good look at how short a time (since WW2, really) we have actually had a middle class. There has been very little time when the American people were not fighting hard for something... women's right to vote, the unions' right to exist, a woman's right to simple birth control, a Black person's right to be considered other than property. The list goes on and on and on. If you were not actively involved in any of these fights, they don't seem all that memorable. But the struggles were real and now we can keep awareness of our political reality in the public eye with TV and the Internet. This is just one more battle and it is won in bits and pieces by people who do not give up. EVER!!!

Arild Warud (174)
Friday March 4, 2011, 2:56 am
Thanks for this post Jill.

Past Member (0)
Friday March 4, 2011, 4:18 am
Jill P, thanx for reminding some of the people here that Obama is part of the Elite, and therefore, part of the problem. It amazes me that some people still believe that he understands the struggles of the average middle-class American, let alone the poor! I don't know too many millionare lawyers that comiserate with me over my taxes! We need to put a R.I.P. headstone to the two-party system. Go Green Party!

Past Member (0)
Friday March 4, 2011, 4:23 am
I meant to add that when I said "some of the people here," I meant on Care2 in general, because you rightly state that people will just vore their party anyway.

patricia lasek (317)
Friday March 4, 2011, 6:00 am
I would hope that American are waking up. But, I can tell, just from my own circle of friends here at home, that most don't really pay attention to what is transiping in our country. they continue to be more interested in the "reality" shows than in real life.

If it doesn't affect them directly, they simply don't care to hear about it.

Jill P (64)
Friday March 4, 2011, 6:08 am
That's just it Andrea. Most Americans will complain but STILL vote theri party. I have more arguments with self proclaimed "liberals" and "progressives" than anyone else. You canot be a liberal or progressive and vote for a candidate who takes millions in contributions form corporations. Who do you think they will work for? Obama took millions from corporations and is showing it. He is paying them all back with OUR money and OUR sacrifices. He should pay them back with his own millions.
You have to wonder why people so incredibly rich want to run for public office. It is not to serve the people...only themselves.
I tell people there are independent parties both conservative and liberal. Pick one. Just stop supporting the Money Party we have in office now. They have to go. They have been creating this disaster for about 30 years now. obama is just carrying out his part of the dismantling plan. He picked up where Bush left off.
I want rich people out of my government and out of my business (illegal wiretapping, reading emails, etc.), and out of my life.
The "good guy" rich people need to get off theri butts too. Just writing a tax deductible check to a charity is not enough. We are hitting the streets and campaigning so where are they? Money is power in this country so they should be using it and actively fighting for the people. Put their money AND time where their mouths are.They have more time than most of us.
When they do that then I will be impressed. Until then they are just part of the problem.

Jill P (64)
Friday March 4, 2011, 6:10 am
unfortuantely, Patricia, that is my circle of friends as well. I need new friends. LOL

. (0)
Friday March 4, 2011, 6:32 am
sadly noted

Jill P (64)
Friday March 4, 2011, 6:37 am
John, Jesus has always been a Republican.
Didn't he preach the Hell with the poor and the rich shall inherit the Earth and enslve the poor?
I saw a documentary years ago talking about his teachings and how he would be preceived today. He would be considered...dare I say it...a Socialist. Equal and fair distribution of wealth. WOW!

Robert S (111)
Friday March 4, 2011, 6:58 am
The surreal unconsciousness, and apathy of many who's lives are carried on with an emphasis on trivial pursuits and complacency while Rome burns, is for those who observe it, painful. The Fiddle has been replaced with the "reality show" and Faux news. Doubly galling is the astro turf uprising financed by the very people who set the fire, in order to confuse any efforts to dowse the blaze, by pointing at the firemen who arrive and shouting Communist!

Robert S (111)
Friday March 4, 2011, 7:07 am
The teachings of Jesus must be taken separately from much which is purported to be, the teaching of those teachings.

Sheryl G (359)
Friday March 4, 2011, 7:19 am
Patricia L. said:
I would hope that American are waking up. But, I can tell, just from my own circle of friends here at home, that most don't really pay attention to what is transiping in our country. they continue to be more interested in the "reality" shows than in real life.

If it doesn't affect them directly, they simply don't care to hear about it.

What they do not realize it has been affecting them and is affecting them and will affect them more. They are just living in an illusion that it is not affecting them and the more they cloud their minds with "reality" shows or video games that bring them into some altered state of not being "here' then they will not realize it until the "oh sh*t" moment hits them, when the electric is shut off. Some have gotten there faster than others, but it will be here for everyone on some level and has already been to here for the majority of us in some form or another.

Sheryl G (359)
Friday March 4, 2011, 7:20 am
Patricia L. said:
I would hope that American are waking up. But, I can tell, just from my own circle of friends here at home, that most don't really pay attention to what is transiping in our country. they continue to be more interested in the "reality" shows than in real life.

If it doesn't affect them directly, they simply don't care to hear about it.

What they do not realize it has been affecting them and is affecting them and will affect them more. They are just living in an illusion that it is not affecting them and the more they cloud their minds with "reality" shows or video games that bring them into some altered state of not being "here' then they will not realize it until the "oh sh*t" moment hits them, when the electric is shut off. Some have gotten there faster than others, but it will be here for everyone on some level and has already been to here for the majority of us in some form or another.

Sheryl G (359)
Friday March 4, 2011, 7:21 am
Wow, how did I do that.....a double hitter. lol

Kathy Javens (104)
Friday March 4, 2011, 8:19 am
Noted. Awesome article. Thanks to all involved. This is exactly what Americans need to be working on. Put on the brakes America and lets head for the top. Do NOT let them push us towards the bottom anymore. We work too hard for any of this to happen to us.

Past Member (0)
Friday March 4, 2011, 9:18 am
The American government is the best government that the wealthy elites could buy. If the vast majority of Americans want their fair share of the "pie," then they are going to have organize, get active, and march in the streets from now until Election Day 2012 to make sure the corporate drones running this nation into the ground get the message loud and clear. The workers want their bailout too, Mr. President!

Sally M (72)
Friday March 4, 2011, 11:20 am
Great article and even better comments. There are good politicians about....Udall of Colorado and Udall of NM, and Bennet of Colo., but the majority of them are out for their personal influence and gods----money and power. Someone mentioned on a different post that our legislators need to be volunteers, the political system should be run as an org....non-profit, and then we will see who really has the best interest of our country in the front of his/her heart and mind. And non-profits bring to the top the really great minds who actually solve problems, not pass them off to the next run of crooks.

Sharon Karson (82)
Friday March 4, 2011, 2:39 pm
Interesting. I've heard much with which I agree. I campaigned for Obama based on his promise of change. I desperately wanted to believe he whould bring the changes this country needed to live up to its original potential. I have been sadly disappointed.

I know a little-known prophecy from the bible. In the verses Jesus was talking to his desciple about judgement day. He said that many would come before him and tell him about all the great things they did in his name and that he would tell them, "You knew me not!"

Now I'm fed up with what our government is doing to us and I am going to do something about it. Keep an eye out for a new Political ACTION group. NO debates. If you agree with the action, you take it. If not, don't. The first thing I will do is post a link to You answer a survey and they tell you the exact percentage your candidates and representatives agree with your views and they give the contact information for those candidates/reps. Where available they also post voting records. Important information for people who actually want to do something instead of talk it to death. WARNING, i am extremely liberal about individual rights. I more conservative when it comes to fiscal issues and a handful of other things. My bias will show in the actions I propose and in how well I support others actions. That's simple honest human nature. There will be few rules for the group, but those rules will be strictly enforced. Hope to see you there.

Sheryl G (359)
Friday March 4, 2011, 3:22 pm
Good for you Sharon. Took a little break from the speech I'm giving tomorrow, is nice to see someone rolling up their sleeves.

Jill P (64)
Friday March 4, 2011, 3:22 pm
Sally the Federal government IS a nonprofit. That is why government run programs, NOT privatized ones, cost so much less. it is cheaper to have the government run schools, police, and healthcare because they are just trying to break even NOT turn a profit. It is also cheaper because everyone pays into it and has a lot of buying power. That is why we should have Expandd and Improved Medicare for All. IT is affordabel for the budget and affordable for the people.
It is the rich greedy blood suckers who like to stop those programs, siphon the money and privatize the programs. They see our Federal nonprofit as great source from which to steal. many large nonprofits today, even ones who used to be good and sincere, are overrun with crooks who see all those donations as a jockpot to steal.
There are some good politicians in Washington and in state, county and city governments. The problem is Americans only vote for whoever raises the most money. They don't vote on issues. If they did they would vote for the candidates who don't accept money from corporations, only people. that way they only have people to answer to. The American people need to change their behavior and way of thinking. I voted for candidates who did not take corporate money. I knew a lot people who liked my candidates but voted for the corporate employees becasue "everyone else" did. If everyone voted for the candidate they liked and agreed with instead of the one they were told to vote for the good ones would have had a chance to win. People are just too chicken to vote for good people who are not popular on tv. They like to be part of the crowd. I guess even if it means tanking our economy.

Jill P (64)
Friday March 4, 2011, 3:26 pm
Are you refering to Project Vote Smart Sharon? That is a good site.
The link is
I've been posting that for a long time.
Project Vote Smart

Linda G (187)
Friday March 4, 2011, 4:31 pm
While many call Obama part of the Elite, I would ask just how many middle class and poor have been elected president in the recent past? With the costs of TV, radio, ads on the Net, etc, etc, etc. the good people who may be eminently qualified to lead don't have much of a chance. Unless there is true election campaign reform, we will be stuck with those who have the big bucks. And Obama, while he may be a disappointment to some, does not work in a vacumn. He grew up in a middle class family and worked his way up the ladder through ambition and education. He is trying to find ways to get us back to work and because we, the apathetic, elected those who will oppose him at any cost, perhaps we need to take some of the responsibility.

People at Care2 are involved in the debate and in taking action. But how many of your friends and neighbors are too busy trying to survive or just zoning out on tv to actually do anything about anything?


Nelson Baker (0)
Friday March 4, 2011, 4:47 pm
We will continue this downhill slide untill all Republicans are voted out of offic.

Robert S (111)
Friday March 4, 2011, 4:54 pm
Well the race to the bottom hit close to home today as the department of aging announced closings. Among the centers to close will be the one I have worked for two years now. I am soon to be unemployed, and many of those who I have cared for and about, will be in a hard place without our services. This is very sad.

The Department for the Aging released a list of 105 senior centers set to shutter if the city does not receive $25 million in funding from Albany.

According to the department, the state shifted money traditionally allocated to city senior centers to child welfare programs, effectively slashing the senior center budget by a third. If not restored, the cut would close 22 centers in the Bronx, 31 in Brooklyn, 26 in Manhattan, 22 in Queens and 4 in Staten Island.

Robert S (111)
Friday March 4, 2011, 4:58 pm

Sheryl G (359)
Friday March 4, 2011, 5:14 pm
This is very sad Robert, and notice, it is pitting the very old against the very young. Who gets the crumbs, the old or the children, when in actuality both should be cared for. All the while the very well to do keep getting their tax breaks.

Jill P (64)
Friday March 4, 2011, 5:19 pm
That is the pattern Robert.
We pay taxes. We pay for these services. The super rich don't pay their share fo taxes, cut these programs and pocket the money. so they not only save money they make a profit at the same time. Then blame it on hard times, balancing the budget, etc..But the budget is never balanced becaue while they cut these programs they increase corporate welfare.
I'm sorry Linda. obama is NOT even close to being a vitctim. he had the House and Senate. The Democrats could have passed single payer healthcare. They could have restored regulations so the banks and Wall Street don't crash our economy again. They could have invested in the American people instead of running up our deficit to give to their super rich friends who in turn give them a percentage of the money. Democrats had Washington. They had a chacne to show everyone what they are made of. And they did. They are just as greedy, ruthless and hearless as the Repubs. One journalist said it perfectly. "The Democrats are nothing but a bunch of Thugs!"
Obama is not a victim. his hands are not tied. he just caes nothing for people. Only $$$$$$$$

Jill P (64)
Friday March 4, 2011, 5:26 pm
Thugs need a scapegoat. Seniors and the disabled are the scapegoats. They like to scare everyone into thinking Medicare and Social Security are draining our budget and pulling the economy down. I saw one moron Senator on tv showing a dollar. he said 18 cents of that dollar goes to all the government programs. The rest of that dollar is all medicare. Really! Of course the reporter did not challenge it nor did he clarify that Medicare is not part of the budget and even if it were figured into the budget it only comprises 5 - 7 % depending on who you talk to.
so here America watches and is terrified that those damn seniors are sucking the country dry. Rich lies. Rich ies.
The Senator should have mentioned how much of acut he steals from our budget. how huge a cut corporate welfare takes and how it increases every year.
so they turn us agaisnt each other again. Seniors and disabled are easy targets. They are not rich enough to have a strong lobby.

Robert S (111)
Friday March 4, 2011, 5:34 pm
Yes. I noticed. There is more than one way to pull the plug on grandma, and they have found a way. You should have seen the faces of some of these people today as we had to announce this. Not a good day. They...we, who are affected by this, now join the many who have been hit one way or another, and will suffer and struggle because of votes cast for austerity inflicted on the middle class while those who created the problem were bailed out and live in luxury still unpunished, and in fact rewarded. This hit those I care about today, and this hit me. Who knows what tomorrow will bring.

Jill P (64)
Friday March 4, 2011, 6:16 pm
I just got this in my mail. I am sorry this is long, bu Robert, this may explain things a bit. The seniors are nto the only target. We should write to the governor about the senior centers as well.

In the Public Interest
Selling Out Injured Baby Rights
By Ralph Nader

New York State's Governor Andrew Cuomo will be judged harshly by history if he doesn't reverse his position supporting limiting the legal rights of brain damaged babies. Imagine a life-time $250,000 cap on pain and suffering and families having to endure a burdensome and humiliating struggle to get medical bills paid as they arise from an insurance funded entity.

Governor Cuomo is hiding behind the recommendations of his Medicaid Redesign Team, which has more than a sprinkling of hospital and industry lobbyists, and which was the stalking horse for this heartless proposal.

Why you might ask would Andrew Cuomo, the son of Mario Cuomo, a man widely regarded as a champion of the underdog, advance such a mean-spirited and wrong-headed measure?

The short answer: political expediency. Credible observers say Governor Cuomo needs to give the health insurance industry a financial benefit in exchange for the health insurance industry not economically punishing hospitals workers. And to top it off with a touch that would make Machiavelli proud, the Governor placed this initiative in his budget proposal. This means that for the New York State Assembly and Senate to vote against this draconian measure used to seal a political deal, the legislators would have to vote down the entire state budget.

It is shameful that the Governor would use his creativity and intellect to help the health industry at the expense of helpless babies who are victims of medical malpractice.

Many in the health care and insurance industry seem to regard the civil justice system as a nuisance that threatens to destroy our economy and way of life. In reality, America’s civil justice system plays an indispensable role. When the rights of injured consumers are vindicated in court, our society benefits in countless ways: compensating victims and their families for shattering losses (with the cost borne by the wrongdoers rather than taxpayers); preventing future injuries by deterring dangerous health care and other practices, spurring safety innovation; and educating the public to risks associated with certain products and services. These legal rights provide society with its moral and ethical fiber by defining appropriate norms of conduct.

Governor Cuomo needs to review the facts on medical malpractice. First he should know that supporters of tort "deform" invoke one myth after another: a litigation explosion, juries automatically ruling in favor of plaintiffs and routinely awarding punitive damages, an economy shattered by these awards. Each of these notions is demonstrably false. Only a tiny percentage of persons injured bring lawsuits, and an even tinier percentage of those who do receive large verdicts. Limiting victims' rights is an anti-democratic solution to a trumped-up problem.

Second, a driving force behind this dishonest campaign is the insurance industry. Whenever, over the years, insurers face low interest rates and declining stock investments, they start the drumbeat against justice for victims. They’ve made a particular cause against liabilities for medical malpractice. Instead of demanding disciplinary action against incompetent physicians, urging medical associations to police their own ranks, the insurance industry lobbies state and federal legislatures to curtail victims' rights and remedies in courts of law. At the insurance industry’s behest, their physician policyholders have joined the call.

Why do physicians allow themselves to be tools of insurance companies that gouge them especially when they are not among the incompetent few who account for most malpractice claims (five percent of doctors are involved in roughly 50 percent of malpractice payouts)? One answer is that insurance companies frighten physicians with false data suggesting that malpractice suits run amok. A persuasive case can be made that there are far too few malpractice suits. The 1999 Institute of Medicine study estimated that gross malpractice in hospitals alone takes up to 98,000 American lives a year and causes hundreds of thousands of serious injuries. Yet various studies show that roughly 90% of people harmed by medical malpractice do not even file suit.

If you total the entire amount of premiums physicians pay in a year for their malpractice insurance and divide it evenly by all the physicians practicing in the United States, the average annual premium is less than $10,000 per doctor. Very manageable. So why are some doctors paying $50,000 or $100,000 a year to their malpractice insurers? Because the profit hungry companies have learned to over-classify their risk pools, thereby charging exorbitant amounts to specific specialists like obstetricians and orthopedic surgeons. In addition, because insurers fail to surcharge the few incompetent physicians in these specialties, the competent specialists pay for more than they should.

There is another benefit to the insurance industry from this kind of over-classification. When obstetricians are gouged, they protest loudly, threaten not to deliver babies, and sometimes actually go on strike. This makes great television -- crying babies and physicians in their garb blaming lawyers – and deflects blame from the insurers, who laugh their way to the bank. In recent years, their profits have soared.

Neither organized medicine nor the insurance companies go after bad doctors. The AMA's web site does not report any data about incompetent or crooked physicians, and the insurance companies have shown little interest in loss prevention. Instead, both physicians’ and insurers’ lobbies fund and press legislators to enact laws that politicize the courts, tie the hands of judges and juries, and make it harder for innocent people or children to receive just compensation for their tragic suffering.

Isn't it time to focus on malpractice prevention instead of trying to hamstring hundreds of thousands of Americans harmed by their doctors’ negligence? Are malpractice awards the national crisis physicians and insurers suggest? In fact, the entire medical malpractice insurance industry payout to victims in verdicts and settlements is about $5 billion a year (substantially less than the amount our the country spends on dog food). Isn't it time to focus on malpractice prevention instead of trying to restrict the rights of hundreds of thousands of Americans harmed by their doctors’ negligence?

We need to ask whether proposed reforms level the playing field or tilt an already un-level field even further by making it more difficult for wrongfully injured citizens to receive justice from the perpetrators of their harms.

The tort deform movement amounts to a perverse rewriting of history. Tort law produced decades of slow but steady progress in state after state respecting the physical integrity of human beings against harm by recognizing that even the weak and defenseless deserve justice. Instead of seeing this evolution as a source of national pride, a coalition of insurance companies, corporate defense lobbies, and craven politicians depict it as an accountability that must be stripped.

If this campaign succeeds, the results are sadly predictable. Tort deform means less deterrence, which means more injuries, more uncompensated victims, and tremendous overall costs transferred to society.

Send the governor a letter and remind him an important part of being a leader is defending the defenseless. His address is:

The Honorable Andrew M. Cuomo of New York State

York State Capitol Building

Albany, NY 12224

For more information on the importance of the Civil Justice system visit

Tell your friends to visit Nader.Org and sign up for E-Alerts.

Jo-Ann Harris (85)
Friday March 4, 2011, 6:22 pm
Noted and read. Thanks Dandelion. As a Canadian we have the same problem here. The rich get richer and the middle class is left with the brunt of the tax and problems. Rich corporations and the wealth should have to fess up their fair share of the tax burden on our economies.

Jill P (64)
Friday March 4, 2011, 6:31 pm
The revolving door also swings from K Street back to Capitol Hill
The Center for Responsive Politics and Remapping Debate are reporting that at least 130 congressional chiefs of staff and legislative directors were once lobbyists. And most of them represented corporations and trade organizations, or worked for lobbying firms representing corporations.


Robert S (111)
Friday March 4, 2011, 7:47 pm
Jill, I don't really need whats happening explained to me, as I am not bewildered, confused or uninformed...but sad and angry in turns. I did find the article informative as to particulars, so interesting, and not all that long, so thanks.

Robert S (111)
Saturday March 5, 2011, 9:56 am
May I add, taking a step back, that you are very well informed Jill, and the info provided by you is appreciated as is this post. Well done.

Jill P (64)
Sunday March 6, 2011, 9:26 am
I know you don't really need what is happening explained to you Robert. I did not need to imply you were not aware. you are in the heart of it. I just thought I would share the info with you and others. I found it interesting that shortly after your announcement I got the notice in my eamil.
The Super Rich have gone power hungry. More than usual.
They are more out of control than usual. We put nut jobs in power.
We've got rallies in Florid that I am going to attend. They are March 8. I am assuming there will rallies in other states as well that day. I had enough trouble finding the info on Florida.

Robert S (111)
Sunday March 6, 2011, 12:08 pm
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