WDEL Blog: Allan Loudell

Open Friday / Weekend Forum

Which stories / topics / issues grab your attention this weekend?

Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden has returned to Delaware and his father's home. No word on when Beau Biden will return to work. No further word on his medical circumstances. His father, the Vice President, was to join President Obama in Scranton, then come back to Wilmington.

A demolition crew has brought down what had been the world's tallest LEGO structure -- at John Dickinson High School. At 112 feet and 11-and-three-quarters inches, the LEGO structure beat the previous record of 106 feet set in the Czech capital, Prague, in 2012. A web of guy-wires prevented the LEGO structure from toppling.

Wilmington firefighters fought a stubborn, two-alarm fire Thursday at Fourth & Orange Streets. Destroyed: Gross Lighting Center near Delaware Tech. The building had been part of the Gross family for generations. But the city's L & I department had condemned the building.

In Florida, George Zimmerman emerged from the shadows to visit the headquarters of Kel-Tec, the very same firm which manufactured the gun Zimmerman fired at Trayvon Martin. Zimmerman and his lawyer examined the high-capacity, Kel-Tec KSG pump-action shotgun.

Speaking of guns and Florida, deputies of the Escambia County Sheriff's office shot an unarmed, 60-year-old Florida man in his own driveway. Deputies apparently mistook Roy Middleton for a car thief. A nearby resident apparently reached that conclusion, calling 9-1-1 around 2:30 a.m. Middleton apparently was trying to retrieve a loose cigarette from his mother's Lincoln Town Car. Deputies insist when they ordered Middleton to show his hands, Middleton hesitated and made what was described as a lunging motion. The sheriff naturally defends his deputies, insisting Middleton did not immediately follow the officers' orders, and APPEARED to reach for a metal object.

Also speaking of guns, media Down Under are still consumed with the slaying of Australian baseball player Chris Lane, gunned down - according to police - by three teens in a passing car as the victim was jogging through the streets of Duncan, Oklahoma. The accused assailants - an interracial group of would-be gang members - told police they murdered Lane out of boredom and had nothing else to do.


"Retail sales have steadily increased in Ohio counties where shale gas is being developed, but the number of new jobs created has been small, according to an analysis released Thursday.

'Total employment growth has been much less robust than sales activity in Ohio's shale country', notes the Ohio Utica Shale Gas Monitor..."

Obama Administration officials reportedly are evaluating possible responses to what appeared to be a chemical attack in Syria.


"The day after a deadly assault in Syria that bore many of the hallmarks of a chemical weapons attack, a sharply divided Obama Administration on Thursday began weighing potential military responses to President Bashar al-Assad's forces.

Senior officials from the Pentagon, the State Department, and the intelligence agencies met for three-and-a-half hours at the White House Thursday to deliberate over options, which officials say could range from a cruise missile strike to a more sustained air campaign against Syria.

The meeting broke up without any decision, according to senior officials, amid signs of a deepening division between those who advocate sending Mr. Assad a harsh message and those who argue that military action now would be reckless and ill-timed..."

This story from the U.K.'s INDEPENDENT newspaper may explain why the Obama Administration might not have rushed to publicly condemn the British government for its treatment of Britain's GUARDIAN newspaper and the detainment of the partner of a GUARDIAN journalist who's been breaking all those surveillance stories, courtesy of Edward Snowden:

"Britain runs a secret internet-monitoring station in the Middle-East to intercept and process vast quantities of e-mails, telephone calls and web traffic on behalf of Western intelligence agencies, The INDEPENDENT has learnt.

The station is able to tap into and extract data from the underwater fibre-optic cables passing through the region.

The information is then processed for intelligence and passed to GCHQ in Cheltenham and shared with the National Security Agency (NSA) in the United States. The Government claims the station is a key element in the West's 'war on terror' and provides a vital 'early warning' system for potential attacks around the world..."

Some local governments are cutting employees' hours over projected costs from the President's health-care overhaul.


"Many cash-strapped cities and counties facing the prospect of shelling out hundreds of thousands of dollars in new health-care costs under the Affordable Care Act are opting instead to reduce the number of hours their part-time employees work.

The decisions to cut employee hours come 16 months before employers - including state and local governments - will be required to offer health-care coverage to employees who work at least 30 hours a week. Some local officials said the cuts are happening now either because of labor contracts that must be negotiated in advance, or because the local governments worry that employees who work at least 30 hours in the months leading up to the January 2015 implementation date would need to be included in their health-care plans..."

"Argo" actor and director Ben Affleck will don Batman's cape and cowl for the 2015 sequel to "Man of Steel". He would be the 8th actor to play the Caped Crusader. Some fans are furious.

Rapper J. Cole has caused a stir by declaring Barack Obama wouldn't be President if he were dark-skinned. Cole was raising one of the more persistent undercurrents in the African-American community (and possibly in U.S. society at large): Colorism, where lighter-pigmented African-Americans are viewed more positively, even thought of as less threatening. J. Cole created a bigger stir for his use of a derogatory term for gay people on several tracks from his most recent album.

Posted at 9:07am on August 23, 2013 by Allan Loudell

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Comments on this post:

Fri, Aug 23, 2013 10:33am
It seems the "Affordable Care Act" is NOT affordable & not good for our country/economy...it needs to be de-funded.

Mr. Loudell:

Do you have any more updates on the Coptic Christians in Egypt?

Fri, Aug 23, 2013 12:24pm
In dealing with the Affordable Care Act, and stressing the word "Affordable", one needs to be careful. There are three parties that the Affordable Care Act affects. They are government, businesses, and We (you and I) The People.

The Affordable Care Act will SAVE the government Trillions of future payouts, because insurers will be bearing much more of the medical cost than they do now. This is already in effect. The medical portions of our budget are coming in under budget. This is a win. The Affordable Care Act saves our government (and taxpayers) considerable amounts of money. It is therefore more affordable than having NO Affordable Care Act.

Next: We The People. The 2008 election was run and won on Health Care because the American People were sick of getting ripped-off. After paying their whole working lives into a medical plan, their corporate insurers dropped them at 65 as being too risky. Any reason to deny benefits was invented to deny benefits. Now, corporate insurers are paying rebates to customers, who are being overcharged for insurance. Now, there are no copays for healthy checkups. Now, insurers must cover pre-existing conditions. Overall, the Affordable Care Act has made insurance a lot more affordable for Americans... there are close to 315 million of them. So yes, for two of the three parties, one could say the Affordable Care Act is very affordable.

The complaining all comes from ONLY the business side. As insurers, they are the ones paying out the claims. As financiers, they are the ones not able to cheat their way our of responsibility into wealth. As profiteers, they are the ones who, because they were let off the hook for so long, must now shoulder the original responsibility, and compared to having no responsibility, that is an increase to them. So to them, the appearance that the Affordable Care Act is not that affordable if they wish to keep up with their past track records of excess, is valid.

But. What are corporate profits anyway? They are 2 Trillion of our economy every financial quarter, which is 13 weeks, which with no holidays, is 65 business working days. Corporate profits are not a business expense. They are not required for the hiring or firing of people. They are excess, money left over after all expenses have been paid..... If that money were reinvested back into the economy, we'd have a roaring economy. But it isn't. That excess money sucked out of the economy is primarily spent to buy others' shares out of the economy, and thereby increase your share. For example, if Mike and I are competitors, and I buy Mike out, I have more revenue; I cut employees; I cut purchases because with two companies, I have duplication, and I make even more profit. But... since my purchases are down, the economy suffers. Since my labor is down (people out-of-work) the economy suffers. So I then have money to buy another existing company for the betterment of myself, to the demise of the entire economy...

So ... to demean the Affordable Health Act because it may hurt societies' most hurtful entity, is misguided. Profits are great. Just like beer is great. Too much of both gives us a terrible reality to wake-up to the next morning.

So the math stacks up like this. For the Government, the Affordable Health Act is a positive; give it a +1... For the People, the Affordable Health Act is a positive: give it a +1... For the Corporations.. give it a minus 1.

Now, do the math... +1 +1 -1 = ...... +1

The Affordable Health Act is Affordable and will not, in our lifetimes, ever be defunded, no matter how much the corporate crybabies wail, and moan, and gnash their teeth. They should be grateful we aren't kicking those teeth in, with all the hardships we've endured, just so they can get "their money".

Fri, Aug 23, 2013 2:23pm
I have a relative who is disabled. Completely. For ten years she has been on Medicare. Some medication was out of pocket, but most was paid for by the government, along with four doctor visits per year. This year, Obamacare kicked in. And so did her payments for Medicare. Her annual payment is $1,360.68. Her only income is her late husband's pension, totaling $1,212.72 per year. Do you see a problem here? AFFORDABLE CARE ACT MY FOOT!

Fri, Aug 23, 2013 2:53pm
Nice commercial but the reality is costs are going up for "the People", businesses are cutting employees and their hours (Middle/Lower class), "the People"will NOT be able to keep their doctors/plans as promised and "the People" once again lose.
The original HealthCare programs were broken but repairable by the free market and real cometition...0-Care is already behind schedule and now that we "the People" have begun to see what's in the AHA (as Nancy Pelosi said) a majority of people (on the Left and the Right) don't want to be in this system.
The only winner in your equation is Government and the biggest losers are those in the Middle Class. I predict that corporations will probably do just fine as well (at least those who play ball with this admin)

Fri, Aug 23, 2013 3:04pm
Couple thoughts or maybe Allan mistyped:

1) Isnt Beau Biden married with kids? Why is he returning to his fathers house? Does his whole family live there?

2) Is Affleck playing Batman or Superman? The last Superman movie was 'Man of Steel'

Mike from Delaware
Fri, Aug 23, 2013 3:21pm
JimH: Was that a typo, Her annual payment is $1,360.68/yr to Medicare.

Her only income is her late husband's pension, totaling $1,212.72 per year [did you mean $1212.72 per month?].

Her monthly payment to Medicare then is $113.39/month. That's not a lot of money, but still with only $1212.72/month coming in, could make things tighter for her depending on other things such as:

Does she still pay for some meds or are they covered completely along with the 4 doctor visits, etc.

Her out of pocket cost might actually be lower [I'm not asking you to really tell us her business, but you see what I'm getting at]. So she may be paying a monthly premium now where she didn't before, but she may actually be pending less money each month or maybe each year this way. So it might be a better deal for her, depending on how the plan works.

As your relative is disabled, doesn't she also get some diability money from Social Security? If she doesn't, maybe she's entitled to it and doesn't know it. That would also help her make ends meet.

Allan Loudell
Fri, Aug 23, 2013 3:56pm
To Arthur---

Beau Biden is married with kids.

He and his family are staying at the Vice President's residence as a home Beau purchased is being renovated. This was reported in the original stories.

Batman. Combined Batman/Superman movie.

Fri, Aug 23, 2013 7:09pm
kavips: You're half right about Obamacare saving the government money, but the money will be saved through massive early and unnecessary deaths of people who will be denied care. Sadly, the ones who paid will be the ones denied and the freeloaders will get the care. If you're a Republican or a Christian, you potentially could face even further such discrimination.

Fri, Aug 23, 2013 8:02pm
Once again, another "thrill killing" has occurred. This time the victim was an 88-year-old WW2 purple heart recipient. The common thread between this and the Oklahoma shooting of a college student is that the murderers were black and the victims were white. But is Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton showing up in Oklahoma and Spokane, Washington to protest the violence? Hell no. The victims were expendable white crackers. Thanks again, Mr. President!

Sat, Aug 24, 2013 5:30am
Mother of lesbian cop booted out of church she has been a member of for sixty years after refusing to condemn her daughter

- Linda Cooper has been forced to leave the Ridgedale Church of Christ in Tennessee
- Church elders were unhappy with her public support for lesbian daughter Kat
- Kat, a detective with the local police department, fought to secure health benefits for her same-sex spouse, Krista
- During the case earlier this month, Linda held her daughter's hand and embraced the couple after their victory
- The church told her she had to repent and ask forgiveness or leave
- She has left, but her husband says she is devastated by being forced to choose behind her daughter and her church

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2400940/Mother-lesbian-cop-booted-church-member-years-refusing-condemn-daughter.html#ixzz2csSBwIf4

Sat, Aug 24, 2013 8:49am
Hey, all you Rush bashers out there (which is almost all of you). Take this one in your face!


Sat, Aug 24, 2013 8:50am
Hey Bill, presenting another excuse to curse God? You're digging yourself deeper and deeper. Better repent while you still have time.

Mike from Delaware
Sat, Aug 24, 2013 8:51am
Mrpizza: Healthcare is an area where I don't agree with the GOP. I've been a fan of the Single Payer system for some time (Obamacare is a poor substitute, but is better than nothing as it was originally a GOP idea). For those of us who have healthcare coverage, via our employers [you through your union benefits from the USPS], we've been blessed. Unfortunately, not all employers offer such a healthcare plan for their employees.

Even with the coverage I get via [my employer] meds, hospital stays, even out patient stuff is very expensive. I can not imagine how some one without healthcare can afford to get their meds much less an operation.

How can we, as a society, say to those without it too bad for you, I've got mine. Me and mine get to survive whereas you and yours do not, but be blessed. Somehow that doesn't seem to me to be something Jesus would say.

Why do you think Jesus fed the 5000? To pull off a cool miracle? No, those folks were far away from the nearest Kosher "McDonald's" and needed to eat, so he provided for their physical needs. Those "freeloaders" got a free meal from Jesus that day. I don't see in the scriptures where the Apostles charged for the meal, or even asked for a free will offering. No, those folks were in need and Jesus met that need, no strings attached.

So, for that reason, I believe that we need a healthcare system that covers everyone. Yep, that's a Socialistic thought, but so was the 1st Century Church where they shared & pooled their wealth to help each other [Acts 2:42-47, and Acts 4:32-36]. Yet, too many Christians today have decided they don't want to follow those examples of what literally the 1st Century Church did, nor follow the Red Letter parts of the Gospel [the words of Jesus]. So on this issue, the Dems are acting more like Jesus than the GOP.

Time for the GOP / TEA folks to re-read those words of Jesus (the red lettered parts). Then if they really want to be the so called "Christian Party" then they need to start governing in a way that represents what Jesus said to do & ignore those right wing talking heads on the radio (Rush, Beck, Hannity, and Jensen) who are not preaching grace, love, being the Good Samaritan of Christ. But instead those mouths of conservatism are preaching selfishness, greed, & not giving a rip about anyone else as long as they got theirs. Sorry I don't see that attitude reflected anywhere in the words Jesus spoke nor in how the 1st Century Church operated.

It was this loving attitude that the church had then that caused folks to say look how much they love one another. Sadly folks aren't saying that much today about the church [sure individuals like Mother Teresa and we all probably know folks who are like that in the church like the Catholic Monk who runs Emmanuel Dining Room, or the Lutheran Pastor near New Castle who's running a food closet where hundreds of folks (including many of the working poor) get groceries for their families, etc, etc]. We as the church in America need to reclaim our 1st Century Church heart and attitude. That is why the church in America and Europe is not growing, but is in the Third World. Their heart attitude is very different from ours, and that's where the rubber meets the road. We talk it, they live it.

Sat, Aug 24, 2013 10:52am
Mike, no that was not a typo. 12-hundred annual income, 13-hundred annual premium. She did receive S.S. payments for awhile. But now, under Obamacare, she cannot until she turns 5, which is ten years from now. Under the new law, my own health insurance is going up $80 per month.

Bottom line, she is being charged more than her income!

Mike from Delaware
Sat, Aug 24, 2013 1:26pm
JimH: Sounds like its time to stir things up a bit. My suggestion would be for her to contact Coons, Carney, and Carper via email copying her letters to them to the News Journal, WDEL, Bill O'Reilly at Fox News, Wolf Blitzer at CNN, the Washington Times, and the Washington Post [note both lib and conservative media].

There's something very wrong there and its time for your relative to let someone who can help her know what's going on [obviously including the media will help our three Congressional folks not just send her some non-nonsensical form mail reply as they are so apt to do, thus blowing off her problem].

My guess is, when our three Musketeers realize she's included both lib/con national media plus the two largest local Delaware media outlets [no coverup possible], she'll get results.

Sat, Aug 24, 2013 4:14pm
First have to agree with Mike. Single payer will be how this all ends up eventually, because it makes the most sense economically. And how the money rolls, is usually how things eventually end out...

Second, I would encourage Earl's relative to find out why her costs are that high. She should not be paying anything at "$1200 a year, which is $100 a month, or $5 dollars a working day. Something is wrong with that scenario. As for you paying $80 more, I would assume that would be from the shakedown by your insurance company to rile you up politically to undercut support for Obama care. My guess, is next year, you get a big fat refund because any money not used towards medical care, comes back to you under Obamacare.

Finally, Pizza brings up the specter of mass medical claim denials, and people dying from no health care. I wonder what makes him think there will be more than that which was occurring under privatized insurance, where having to pay for your life-saving operation prevented an insurance executive from buying his seventh house that year... "Darn Pizza Man! Screw him! I want that beach house, hear me? Deny his claim!"

In otherwords, what Pizza predicts, will happen, but it will happen far less than the current rate of private insurers' denials and useless deaths, now done for the beck and call of lining one's pockets.....

The next adjustment to health care after Obamacare gets settled in, is to allow government health care organizations to compete with private health care organizations.

When the Affordable Health Care Act was created, I remember the insurance companies were very scared of that... They were afraid that the government would spoil their scam of charging 10 times the cost of what medical care actually cost, and thereby expose the amounts of their greed to the public.

Sat, Aug 24, 2013 5:44pm
MFD: You're out of context by bringing Jesus feeding the 5000 into this. There's absolutely no inclusion of civil government in what he did or anything else he did for that matter. I know you mean well, but I'm getting sick and tired of God and Jesus being invoked in an out-of-context manner.
Jesus didn't feed the 5000 by stealing from the rest of the population. All of you. Get it through your heads. This government healthcare scheme is a left-wing power grab that is for the benefit of the ruling elite at the expense of the common man. Unfortunately, once the consequences come home to roost, it will be too late.

Sat, Aug 24, 2013 5:47pm
By the way, I\'ll be going to Washington on September 10th to join the Tea Party Patriots in a last-ditch effort to try and get Congress to defund this debacle. Anybody wanna bash me for it?

Mike from Delaware
Sat, Aug 24, 2013 6:06pm
Mrpizza: We as Jesus' followers ARE to have HIS attitude in how we live our lives. So yes, we as his followers should be concerned for the lesser than thee.

Let's say this a bit stronger. There are some churches who are serving those lesser than thee [interestingly more often than not, the mainline Protestant denominations, and Catholics are the one's who built hospitals, soup kitchens, provide food/clothes closets, etc, etc. There are others [more often than not that are non-denominational] that do not.

Not every church has a food or clothes closet, or even sends money to the other churches that do have local food/clothes closets to help out. These same churches tend to yes send money overseas for missions, but not to feed/clothe those folks overseas, while they also ignore the needs of folks in our nation. Obviously this isn't true 100% of the time, but I was surprised at how often it is the case.

So since those churches are not reaching out to folks as Jesus did, the secular government has to do it. You may not like that, but that is the truth.

Nature abhors a vacuum, so if the church isn't filling the void then someone else will have to step up to the plate.

As far as healthcare, is any church financially able to provide that for folks as they do food/clothes? Probably not. Yet it IS a real need.

You really don't think it a bit selfish to have your great medical care that we tax payers originally provided for you as a Postal worker [due to your union], now through us buying stamps and using the USPS services, yet don't give a hoot for the family down the street who's got health issues and can not pay for care? Too bad for them??? Where is Christ's love in that attitude?

The whole point of the Good Samaritan parable was we are to help others, as that Samaritan did. Most of us don't have the money to do that personally, so the government, which is all of us combined together is trying to do just that.

I encourage you to read those Red Letter sayings of Jesus.

Forget the political angle [lib or conservative, DEM or GOP] and focus on what Jesus is really saying. Sadly, in this case, the DEMS are acting more like Jesus than the GOP. It is what it is, but if I was a Republican I sure wouldn't brag about it.

Mike from Delaware
Sat, Aug 24, 2013 8:34pm
Mrpizza: I hope you enjoy the experience. Nothing wrong with standing up for your beliefs and convictions. Be aware, and be safe.

Sat, Aug 24, 2013 9:35pm
I Jesus were asked if he'd support Obamacare he'd say you're darned right.

Because he alway supported doing what was right over people making money for themselves...

Actually Jesus feeding the 5000 is a very good analogy. I commend Mike for bringing it up... Not everyone will like it. Just like the Pharasees didn't like Jesus feeding 5000 either... If I remember correctly, they killed him for it.

But bottom line, they like those opposed to Obamacare are in the wrong; Jesus was in the right.

Sat, Aug 24, 2013 9:39pm
(the almost identical comment was a mistake)

If Jesus were asked if he'd support Obamacare he'd say you're darned right.

Because he alway supported doing what was right over people making money for themselves...

Actually Jesus feeding the 5000 is a very good analogy. I commend Mike for bringing it up... Not everyone will like it. Just like the Pharasees didn't like Jesus feeding 5000 either... If I remember correctly, they killed him for it.

But bottom line, they (like those opposed to Obamacare) were in the wrong; Jesus was in the right.

Sun, Aug 25, 2013 9:42am
MFD: The taxpayers did not "give" me my medical care. The post office is not taxpayer funded. It receives no subsidies. It has to stand on its own and bring in revenue through the sale of postage. In other words, it has to operate just like a private business. Therefore, the group health insurance I receive (which by the way I pay for) is no different than what I'd have with UPS or FEDEX if I worked for either of those competitors. So no, I don't consider it selfish that I don't want the government stealing a portion of it to "give to the poor". How would you like it if you paid $25,000 for a new car and the government came along and forced you to let people in the hood drive it anytime they want and then when they wreck it are not responsible for it? Well, that's exactly what Obama and his band of thugs are doing with our health care. When the nation is finally bankrupted by this and other print-money spending, you and I are the ones standing holding the bag.

Also, your argument about government filling the vacuum, while valid, does not apply to insurance. Government charity should be limited to basic necessities, and health care, whether you like it or not, does not qualify as that.
Food, clothing, shelter. That's it. Hospitals are already required by law to accept patients without regard to income, as they are non-profits. They have to of course make up the difference by charging higher rates to those who can pay, so we're already subsidizing the poor (and the freeloaders as well) with our private insurance. If you think turning that over to government is going to make it any cheaper, think again. You're in for the sticker shock of your life.

Sun, Aug 25, 2013 9:48am
MFD: The taxpayers did not "give" me my medical care. The post office is not taxpayer funded. It receives no subsidies. It has to stand on its own and bring in revenue through the sale of postage. In other words, it has to operate just like a private business. Therefore, the group health insurance I receive (which by the way I pay for) is no different than what I'd have with UPS or FEDEX if I worked for either of those competitors. So no, I don't consider it selfish that I don't want the government stealing a portion of it to "give to the poor". How would you like it if you paid $25,000 for a new car and the government came along and forced you to let people in the hood drive it anytime they want and then when they wreck it are not responsible for it? Well, that's exactly what Obama and his band of thugs are doing with our health care. When the nation is finally bankrupted by this and other print-money spending, you and I are the ones standing holding the bag.

Also, your argument about government filling the vacuum, while valid, does not apply to insurance. Government charity should be limited to basic necessities, and health care, whether you like it or not, does not qualify as that.
Food, clothing, shelter. That's it. Hospitals are already required by law to accept patients without regard to income, as they are non-profits. They have to of course make up the difference by charging higher rates to those who can pay, so we're already subsidizing the poor (and the freeloaders as well) with our private insurance. If you think turning that over to government is going to make it any cheaper, think again. You're in for the sticker shock of your life.

True charity is voluntary, and that's why I do my charity through private organizations, as God leads ME to do. What the government is doing is stealing, which is contrary to God's word (remember "Thou shalt not steal?").

By the way, I'll be making a substantial donation to the upcoming WDEL radiothon for A.I. Dupont. I hope everybody else on this blog will do the same.

Sun, Aug 25, 2013 9:50am
kavips: Jesus feeding the 5000 was one of the many miracles he performed. Once government is done stealing our money and redistributing it to the freeloaders, we'll all be needing miracles. I'm putting in my request to heaven ahead of time, because once the consequences come home to roost, there's going to be a long waiting line.

Sun, Aug 25, 2013 10:20am
While we're on the subject of "the poor", I have a couple of other things to point out.
First is that I've heard more than my share of Christians bash and trash the prosperity message. It's no wonder we have churches full of "poor church mice". Jesus gave us the prosperity message so people could learn how to not be poor in the first place, but denominational churches have by and large dismissed it as materialism just because of a few bad apples like Peter Popoff who use it as revenue manipulation.

The other thing is that the poor in America are not the truly poor. I deliver pizza to the poor in Chester and most of them have big-screen TV's. I still have a CRT TV that's more than 10 years old. If you want to visit the truly poor, go to Africa or Eastern Europe or Haiti and visit some of the villages I've been to. I guarantee you'll get a whole new perspective on the thing and you'll realize how much you've been duped by western propaganda.

Mike from Delaware
Sun, Aug 25, 2013 1:57pm
Mrpizza: The USPS has only been a non funded by the government resource since, I believe the 80's, maybe even the 70's [ possibly around the same time AMTRAK was created, I just don't remember the details]. Prior to that YES we the tax payer did pay as we still do for the others who work in government. Your benefits are because of YOUR government union. So as a TEA person, you may bad mouth unions, but your bread and butter is there in the amounts you get, BECAUSE of your union. Union's did serve a good purpose and could still do so today, they've gotten greedy and that's why I'm not in favor of them today, but this discussion isn't on unions, so I don't want to derail us there.

It sounds like you're one of the Joel Olstein believers, the Prosperity Gospel. So the poor of the world, who are followers of Christ, are poor because they aren't good enough followers of Christ? Sounds like a works mentality rather than the saving blood of Christ, if you ask me.

I don't want us to get into some big theological argument here, and I'm sure Allan would appreciate us not doing that also.

So we both are brothers in Christ as we do worship the same Risen Christ, but our respective understandings of the scriptures are different, so let's just agree to disagree.

So you'll go to DC to protest Obamacare and prefer the insurance industry run the system with no government oversight and that health insurance should come from your employer, if your employer doesn't offer it then find another job or do without health insurance. Does that express your view correctly?

I, on the other hand, support Obamacare and actually wish it were Single Payer as I believe all legal Americans should have access to quality healthcare and not have to lose their homes or go bankrupt. I don't believe quality healthcare should be ONLY those who can afford it. I don't believe jamming up the Emergency Rooms with poor folks who use the ER as their family doctor is the best way to spend our healthcare dollars. So one way or the other we pay, so why not get the biggest bang for our buck?

OK, I believe that summarizes where we both are on this issue. If I didn't quite get your view correct, feel free to upgrade my understanding.

Bottom line is we'll just have to agree to disagree on these issues. You say To-ma-to and I say Tom-a-to.

Sun, Aug 25, 2013 3:59pm
MFD: The USPS has not been taxpayer funded since 1971. I've been there since 1980, so I've never worked for a subsidized post office.

Yes, I want health care in the hands of private industry. If you don't understand by now that the government can't be trusted, then there's no hope left for you.

Yes, there are Christians who are poor, but put Joel Osteen and any other media figures out of your mind for just a minute, and think on what Jesus himself said. "I've come that you might have life, and that more abundantly". That means in all areas of life. It has nothing to do with being a "good enough" Christian. Being "good enough" implies doing everything through you own efforts. How about "The blessing of the Lord maketh rich and he adds no sorrow to it." Being a "good enough" Christian implies there's sorrow involved. What it IS about is studying the word and getting the revelation of God for your life. "For it is God who gives thee power to get wealth that he may establish his covenant". God has a covenant with every believer, and it's our job as believers to spread that covenant throughout the earth, and if we learn how to believe him rather than what's around us, he'll give us the necessary resources to
perform his assignment for us. "Give, and it shall be given unto you, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will men give unto your bosom". Isn't that self-explanatory? Statistically, only 20 percent of the church pays their tithes. How can God open the windows of heaven when his own people don't obey? "For I know the plans I have for you. Plans to prosper you, and not to harm you." I don't see any implication of me having to be "good enough" through my own efforts, but rather it's God's message of love to his people. There's a difference between being "good enough" and obedience. Obedience is much easier and produces better results.

Now I'm not saying that there aren't going to be poor Christians. Different people are at different places in their lives, and it may take some longer than others to get God's revelation firmly imbedded into their spirits. But again, obedience, once learned, goes a long way. There's something wrong when the same people stay poor year after year after year. Unfortunately, there are churches that go as far as to teach people that they're supposed to be poor. If you believe that, then you're gonna be poor. You get what you say and you have today what you said yesterday.

I should also point out that prosperity is not necessarily measured in dollars and cents - or big-screen TV's. "He who is faithful in the small things shall be given much". I really don't care anything about fancy jewelry or yachts although I don't bash the guy that does. If Joel Osteen wants to live in the lap of luxury, that's his right. He sells plenty of books and he has the right to do as he pleases with his own money. I think if more people just got the revelation of God's plan for their own individual lives, and learn how to look to God and not government as their source, there would be fewer poor Christians, and in fact more Christians would be better equipped to help the poor.

Now, I've given you scripture after scripture after scripture. My question to you is whether you believe them to be substantive or symbolic.

Sun, Aug 25, 2013 8:57pm
MFD: You said as a TEA person, I may badmouth unions. Not so fast. I do consider unions a necessary evil. My problem with them is that they support left-wing excesses, and unfortunately my dues of $50 a month help support that, but even they are as scared as TEA people about Obamacare.

Understand also that, just like with any other group, individual TEA party folks don't necessarily agree with every detail or each other. TEA people have internal disagreements the same as married people have or for that matter churches or any other walk of life. I go with the TEA party because they reflect what I believe more than any other political group out there at the moment. That doesn't mean I'm a zombie drinking every TEA flavor. There's green and then there's black. While the green is healthier, the black is tastier.

If by some miracle the Democrats renounce the liberal progressive agenda and become truly conservative, I'll be the first to vote for them.

Mike from Delaware
Sun, Aug 25, 2013 10:06pm
Mrpizza : good comments. Unfortunately that sounds very self centered rather than Christ centered. We're not suposed to give so we can get it back (the special check in the mail we didn't know about). We don't give to receive, we should give because of who's dwelling within us. He's given us a new heart full of compassion for the lesser than thee . We should give without any expectation of receiving anything back in return or we're giving for the wrong reasons.

Let's face it, many are giving because it is tax deductible. If that deduction ever disappears watch the giving really drop off. I've posed this question in various Sunday School classes I've been in numerous churches over the years, the question is : if it wasn't deductible would you still give as much as you give? The quiet is deafening. It's the heart attitude that's the issue.

So you may not have worked under the old system that was the post office, but the benefits your union won for was fought for back then so you benefited by it. So why is your work more valuable than the guy who's working somewhere else that doesn't provide that health coverage? He's working just as hard as you(maybe harder) so he's not some bum sitting home being one Romney's takers ( the so called 47%), so why should his family not have some sort of reasonable health care coverage?

I hear & understand your points, I just don't agree with your conclusions. So we'll just have to agree to disagree. Good discussion.

Sun, Aug 25, 2013 11:24pm
That was a very good exchange between Mike and Pizza. But I wanted to back up to something MR. Pizza said, and it was a good point, but it opened a whole new door.

That was comparing American's poor to other 3rd world countries. I have been fortunate to talk to several people here in America, now all middle class, who grew up in poverty of 3rd world countries. One wore his first clothes at age 11 when he had school. All those coming from that environment and it is almost impossible to grasp the jump one must have made from post stone age to the post modern world we have today, consistently say they are sad because their own children are so much unhealthier and unhappier than they were growing up. They didn't know they were poor. They went swimming, ate mangoes anytime they wanted, caught fish, ate grubs, always had enough food, and were happy. They didn't know that walking 8 miles and back to school was supposed to be a hardship; there was one school and you went there.

So the point, I'm making is that pointing to the likes of them and saying they are poorer, may not be a good analogy. For in some regards, they were richer than most any of us will every be.

And you should get yourself a big screen tv. They are usually free on Freecycle. Everyone is using that method to get rid their old ones so they don't have to pay for the disposal, each time they upgrade to the better cheaper ones now at $200-300 dollars. You coming by and picking them up for free will be saving them big bucks. Big TV's are not a status symbol anymore. They are like the refrigerator finally became in the very late 30's. Standard equipment.

Sun, Aug 25, 2013 11:26pm
And Sunday night is music night.... enjoy..


Mon, Aug 26, 2013 4:53am
MFD: If you think it all sounds self-centered, then I guess scripture is self-centered. My conclusion is that scripture actually means what it says. I would submit to you that you have a form of godliness and deny the power thereof.

Mike from Delaware
Mon, Aug 26, 2013 8:46am
Mrpizza: Again, I encourage you to read the Red Lettered words of Jesus. He was all about being a blessing to others, not what can I get for myself or what's in it for me.

St. Francis of Assisi, Mother Theresa are excellent examples of people who really strived to live their lives as Jesus did.

It's easy to take a line of scripture and misread it. Sure there are some followers of Christ who are wealthy, others are not, yet both may be good disciples of Christ. It seems to me the Apostles didn't end up wealthy, and most were martyred for their faith. We are to take up our cross each day. Becoming a Christian isn't the road to riches and the easy life.

If focused on Christ even if financially poor, you are rich. THAT's what seems to be missing from the Prosperity Gospel [aka as the Yuppie Gospel for the upward mobile].

We both just see this differently, that's fine. We both worship the same Risen Christ. We'll both see through smoked colored glass and will both get to see clearly when we're with Christ in eternity. Be at Peace.

Mon, Aug 26, 2013 9:43am
kavips: It was JimH's relative who is getting the poor healthcare coverage...not mine.

Once again you compare Obama to Jesus? If Obama multiplied a few fishes/loaves to feed our nation...it would be a miracle;however, he is instead levelling the field and making sure everyone in this country has the same lousy healthcare (except of course for himself, Congress, government employees, unions, favored businesses and friends of the "Great O")

Jesus was/is the Son of God...and I don't remember him pushing government anything during his brief time on earth. He said to give Caesar that which is Caesar's...tax money but not your soul nor your ultimate loyalty. Neither this president nor any politician deserves ulitmate loyalty or bending of knee...only Christ (at least for me) deserves that degree of loyalty.

BTW, Jesus was/is neither Repubican nor Democrat...I know, shocking to both political parties ;)

Mon, Aug 26, 2013 2:52pm
Oops, Earl, sorry I made that switch. Thanks for clarifying.

And actually, Obamacare is helping those who need medical care, so it is a good thing. Privatized Health care may be good for some, and they can keep it if they wish.

Obamacare lowers costs by putting everyone on health care, so that is good. If something benefits a hundred people, but only one is not better off, it is a good thing.

All we are hearing today, are fake people complaining at the behest of the insurance conglomerates, who will no longer be able to enrich themselves off of us.

No matter how much you stand on street corner and cry against it, most of America is thankful we have it... You have become the old guy in the "funny papers" (haven't used that noun in a good while) who stresses "the world will end today". And when it doesn't, he does it again the next morning.

Mon, Aug 26, 2013 11:25pm
MFD: Being a blessing to others has been my entire point all along. Trouble is, you can't bless people with something you don't have.

Mon, Aug 26, 2013 11:25pm
"Most voters continue to have an unfavorable opinion of the health care law, and believe it will increase the nation’s deficit and drive up health care costs. 

Forty-one percent (41%) of Likely Voters have at least a somewhat favorable impression of the health care law, while 54% view it unfavorable, according to a new Rasmussen Reports telephone survey.  This includes 20% with a Very Favorable opinion of the law and 39% with a Very Unfavorable one.



Mike from Delaware
Tue, Aug 27, 2013 7:57am
The same was true when Social Security was being implemented in stages back in the 1930's, the law passed in 1932, the first payout in 1936. Once it was up and running, and folks were actually benefiting from Social Security, it became very popular with the masses [Granted, the wealthy robber-baron types still hated it; in fact, they still do].

So it will be similar with ACA [Affordable Care Act] aka Obamacare.

Tue, Aug 27, 2013 9:21am
Mr Loudell: I was going to post the U.S. Debt Clock as a counter to Mike and kavips on health-care, Social Security, and our U.S. current economic state, but found out the clock has been frozen for the past 3 months at $16.699396 trillion.

Any idea why this has happened? Are costs snowballing so quickly they broke the clock?

Mike from Delaware
Tue, Aug 27, 2013 10:25am
EarlGrey: Social Security's money should not be part of the debt. It is ONLY because those clowns in Congress of both parties took the S.S. money and spent it on other things [seems like this is a violation of law and some jail time would be appropriate - never will happen!]. They owe Social Security that money back.

Social Security is an insurance plan. We've all paid into it, and in 3 1/2 years, I'll get to start collecting on those promises made to me 40+ years ago when I started working fulltime.

If you're so worried about the debt, then go along with the DEMS and raise taxes on those wealthiest 2% whose paychecks are the largest they've ever been in history, while their taxes are the lowest they've been since 1940.

Interestingly how the upper crust of the GOP [this includes the wealthy talking heads of right-wing talk radio like Limbaugh/Beck/Hannity] who have so effectively sold the middle-class in the GOP that someday YOU could be wealthy like us, you wouldn't want to pay more tax [The odds of any of us becoming part of the 2% is slim to none, but its that dream that causes many in the middle-class to think as the GOP has dictated]. So these middle-class folks are actually voting against their own best interests to protect the robber-baron class [the upper 2%].

Having unfunded wars as Bush Jr. did is another issue that has bankrupted this nation. Taxes should have gone up to fund those wars; instead Bush Jr. lowered taxes making the debt mount even faster. Yep, he's a really brilliant guy [He obviously didn't do well in Math class].

The interesting thing is, the RED states that hate the government and its programs, etc., are the states that get the most financial help from the "evil" Federal government. The Blue states pay the most in taxes and get the least amount of help back from the Federal government.

I think we can't take conservative rants about the debt seriously UNTIL all those RED states stop taking those "evil" Federal tax dollars to help their states and follow their own advice and pull themselves up by their own bootstraps. THEN, they can lecture the rest of us on debt and the evils of the Federal government.

The RED STATES are the TAKERS; the Blue states are the GIVERS. Yet the ungrateful folks of the RED states and their cohorts who live in Blue states [and wish their states were RED] hate the government and want to bankrupt the Feds. Kind of ironic and very twisted, if you ask me. Kind of like biting the hand that feeds you.

Tue, Aug 27, 2013 1:05pm
I am pretty confident that by the time I reach retirement age the Social Security "lock box" will be empty, after paying into this scheme my entire worklife Gen-Xers like myself will get nothing. I am aware of this and attempting to plan accordingly...which is not easy.
Rather than placing higher taxes on those "evil 2%ers" (who will dodge the higher taxes through loopholes and trusts anyway)... why not bring all our troops home and stop starting new wars? I'm starting to think maybe Ron Paul was right and we need to mind our own business, get our own house in order & strong before "helping" out other countries.

Mike from Delaware
Tue, Aug 27, 2013 1:26pm
EarlGrey: How about we do both, place higher taxes on those "evil 2%ers" to do this YES we also need to close those loop holes they use to avoid paying their taxes; AND we need to mind our own business, get our own house in order & strong before "helping" out other countries.

BOTH solutions, in my opinion, together is the best solution.

Fixing Social Security so that there will be more than enough money to pay everyone, well into the 22nd century would simply be to lift the ceiling from the cut off point for Social Security tax being taken out of a person's pay check.

The cutoff now is about $110,000. As most of us don't make that much in a year, we pay SS tax in every paycheck. Those who make MORE that $110K, especially the millionaire, multi millionaires, and billionaires pay that SS tax once, in their first pay check, after that the rest of their salary is NOT taxed for Social Security.

So take the ceiling off that tax so everyone pays it all year long as the little guy does and Social Security will have more than enough money to pay the Boomers, the Gen Xers, Gen Yers, etc, into the 22nd century. Problem solved.

Wed, Aug 28, 2013 10:47pm
"The cutoff now is about $110,000. As most of us don't make that much in a year, we pay SS tax in every paycheck. Those who make MORE that $110K, especially the millionaire, multi millionaires, and billionaires pay that SS tax once, in their first pay check, after that the rest of their salary is NOT taxed for Social Security."

Mike: I totally agree with removing the $110k cutoff and making everyone pay the same percentage on every paycheck into Social Security.

Mike from Delaware
Wed, Aug 28, 2013 11:28pm
EarlGrey: now all we've got to do is convince those folks in Congress.

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