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July 08, 2011



An interesting combination of 'its not my fault, its those damn headwinds' with 'I feel your pain', and a dash of 'if the Republicans in congress would just get to work.'

I suspect his poll numbers will continue their slow but persistant decline.


--"I'm ready to roll up my sleeves"--

Doing a job to America that an American wouldn't do.


Obama's motto: "the buck NEVER stops here"

Captain Hate



TM, read your Minuteman email.

Why doesn't he just put on wifebeaters?

He's got a really sick thing about those shirtsleeves.

Captain Hate

No place to stow cigs in a wifebeater.


Hey, he gave up his vacay this weekend to get to work. Last weekend he kept Congress in thru his lackey Reid and they did nothing while he went to Camp David. He'll be working hard now for a week or so before the well deserved vacay at Martha's Vineyard.


Good morning, I am at work and will probably not be able to keep up with the multiple threads we have today, so I am asking a big favor.

If anyone sees Sara posting today, please point her to my following comment:

Sara: I work for an accounting firm. I had one of the CPA's run a hypothetical for your tax return, based on an annual Social Security income of $25K, no other deductions, no other income.

On Form 1040 and the Social Security Benefits Worksheet using their formula you would STOP at Line 8 (which you would then enter on Line 20a of your tax return) your tax liability would be 0 (zero), - NONE of your social security benefits are taxable (this is true also for your California tax return).

If, however, your SS income is greater than the number I used, you might have to proceed further on the worksheet, past Line 8, to calculate what tax liability, if any, there would be.

Additionally, if you have unwittingly paid taxes you should not have paid you can amend your tax returns for 3 years Federal and 4 years State (California).

Hope this helps you out.


ccal- you are an angel.

Danube of Thought

Does anyone get more than $25K in SS?


DoT - probably married couples.

Paul Zrimsek

Reminds me of an old Mad Magazine cartoon: John Paul Jones is on the deck of Bonhomme Richard exclaiming, "I have not yet begun to fight"-- and one of his men chimes in with "Isn't it time you did, sir? We're getting murdered here!"

Cecil Turner

Don't encourage him. The last thing we need is more help from the Dems in Washington.

Danube of Thought

Undereater at RCP.


Meanwhile, in the UK, they don't realize
that '28 Days' is only a movie (re; the Guardian)

Jim Ryan

It was worse than he thought. He'll need to do another stimulus, this time $2T.

Rick Ballard

Hit sighting at Geraghty:

Jeff Dobbs writes in, asking if Obama will have the, er, audacity to continue claiming “we’re headed in the right direction.” There's a nice ski slope chart included at no extra cost.

Dave (in MA)

You won't be able to see whether his sleeves are rolled up when he's wearing his malaise sweater.

George Ditter

If I had more time, I'd be inclined to do a Google search on how many times the President has proposed to roll up his sleeves and contrast that number with the number of golf shirts he has been photographed wearing.


Well, Ms. Obama will not be rolling up her sleeves. She doesn't wear stuff that lets her do that.

Cecil Turner

There're a few dubious claims in this piece, but this one is clearly on target:

A study by University of Maryland economist Carmen Reinhart and Harvard’s Kenneth Rogoff, endorsed by Treasury Secretary Geithner, shows that when a nation’s debt-to-GDP ratio exceeds 90 percent, economic growth is reduced by one to two percentage points. The president’s Council of Economic Advisers estimates that a one percentage point loss in economic growth translates into one million jobs. Today, the U.S. debt-to-GDP ratio is 95 percent, having crossed the dangerous 90 percent threshold months ago.
But hey, let's spend some more (and raise taxes) . . . brilliant.

JM Hanes

I could have sworn Obama told us that he gets up in the morning and goes to bed at night thinking about jobs. Then again, that might not be inconsistent with claiming he's now ready to do something about other people's jobs, instead of just waking up with unemployment on his mind.


today's trip marks Mr. Bush's 149th visit to the presidential retreat. The planned three-day stay, during which the president is being joined by family and former and current aides, will bring his total time spent at Camp David to all or part of 487 days.

Yes, that's 487 days. And Camp David is not even where the president has spent the most time when not at the White House: Knoller reports that Mr. Bush has made 77 visits to his ranch in Crawford during his presidency, and spent all or part of 490 days there.

Let's see 8 years x 365 days in Office= is roughly 3000
days....hey Bush had a better work ethic than I imagined.

Work 2 days, get a day off, or is it work one day, get 2 days off?

Cecil Turner

We should get a new one of these any time now:

hit and run

JMH, I thought that Obama "would not rest" until everyone had a job (I'd give the link but I'm on the blackberry). Now you're telling me he goes to sleep every night?

Rick, Geraghty is my favorite. Though Morissey is angling for the spot too.

Dave (in MA)

I'll bet Golf Cart One has more miles on it than my commuting car.


when a nation’s debt-to-GDP ratio exceeds 90 percent, economic growth is reduced by one to two percentage points.

And what happens to economic growth when a country's tax revenues rise above, say, 30 percent of GDP (counting state and local)? Geithner endorses this to make the case for higher taxes, no doubt, but that cure is worse than the disease.


"I will not rest"...This one is a year old, so doesn't include them all. After several years down in the ditch heaving and hoing that car, Obama's just not rolling up his sleeves doesn't speak well of his smarts.

They're just Supply-

Media Porn Hides Real Threats to Children

Who knows if Casey Anthony is guilty or innocent? Even Casey might not know at this point. We do know one thing, without any doubt. As our economy and nation crumble around us, we're being amused to death by the corporate media. They've got good reason to keep the headlines on Casey. Absent a major distraction, there might be a focused look at the misrule and looting of this country for the past decades that has created the real threats to the health of children.

"Infant mortality is an important indicator of the health of a nation, and the recent stagnation (since 2000) in the U.S. infant mortality rate has generated concern among researchers and policy makers." Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, CDC, November 2009
The run rate for deaths for children less than one year of age, infants, is around 30,000 per year. Have we heard that figure from corporate media lately? Our international ranking fell for infant mortality from 12th in 1960 to 23d in 1990 and to 29th in 2004.

The US is currently ranked at number 46 in the world in preserving the lives of its infants.


just wear a golf shirt. You do have some of those right ?

Rob Crawford

Hey, Leftist twat -- BUSH ISN'T IN OFFICE ANYMORE.

Own the failure you elected, and stop trying to slander a man a million times better than you.


they're just supply ...

many countries do not count an infant death in the first year at all ... it is as if it wasn't born ... many counties don't count still births towards mortality statistics either ...

we are easily better than the rest of the world if the same real records are compared ...

do your homework ...

The Psychology is well, fundamental

e Idea Behind Fox News Channel Originated in the Nixon White House

"A Plan for Putting the GOP on TV News" (read it here) is an unsigned, undated memo calling for a partisan, pro-GOP news operation to be potentially paid for and run out of the White House. Aimed at sidelining the "censorship" of the liberal mainstream media and delivering prepackaged pro-Nixon news to local television stations, it reads today like a detailed precis for a Fox News prototype. From context provided by other memos, it's apparent that the plan was hatched during the summer of 1970. And though it's not clear who wrote it, the copy provided by the Nixon Library literally has Ailes' handwriting all over it—it appears he was routed the memo by Haldeman and wrote back his enthusiastic endorsement, refinements, and a request to run the project in the margins.

The 15-page plan begins with an acknowledgment that television had emerged as the most powerful news source in large part because "people are lazy" and want their thinking done for them:

Today television news is watched more often than people read newspapers, than people listen to the radio, than people read or gather any other form of communication. The reason: People are lazy. With television you just sit—watch—listen. The thinking is done for you.

With that in mind, the anonymous GOP official urged the creation of a network "to provide pro-Administration, videotape, hard news actualities to the major cities of the United States." Aware that the national television networks were the enemy, the writer proposed going around them by sending packaged, edited news stories and interviews with politicians directly to local television stations.

This is a plan that places news of importance to localities (Senators and representatives are newsmakers of importance to their localities) on local television news programs while it is still news. It avoids the censorship, the priorities, and the prejudices of network news selectors and disseminators.

This was before satellite, so the idea was that this GOP news outlet would record an interview with a Republican lawmaker in the morning, rush the tape to National Airport via truck, where it is edited into a package en route, and flown to the lawmaker's district in time to make the local news. Local stations, the writer surmised, would be happy to take the free programming. The plan is spectacularly detailed—it was no idle pipe dream. The writer estimated that it would cost $310,000 to launch and slightly less than that to run each year, sketched out a 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. schedule with shooting times, editing times, flight times, and arrival times, and estimated that the editing truck—"Ford, GMC, or IHS chassis; V8 engine; 5 speed transmission; air conditioning; Weight: 22,000GVW"—could be "build from chassis in 60 days." In other words, they were serious.

According to Ailes' copious margin notes, he thought it was an "excellent idea" that didn't go far enough and might encounter some "flap about news management."

Basically a very good idea. It should be expanded to include other members of the administration such as cabinet involved in activity with regional or local interest. Also could involve GOP governors when in DC. Who would purchase equipment and run operation—White House? RNC? Congressional caucus? Will get some flap about news management.

And Ailes thought he'd be just the guy to run such a project, telling Haldeman he wanted in:

Bob—if you decide to go ahead we would as a production company like to bid on packaging the entire project. I know what has to be done and we could test the feasibility for 90 days without making a commitment beyond that point.

A November 1970 memo recounting a meeting between Ailes, Haldeman, and two of Haldeman's aides shows that Ailes got the gig, and that Haldeman had proposed a name:

With regard to the news programming effort as proposed last summer, Ailes feels this is a good idea and that we should be going ahead with it. Haldeman suggested the name 'Capitol News Service' and Ailes will probably be doing more work in this area.

The idea as initially envisioned doesn't appear to have gotten off the ground. But Ailes obviously did do "more work in this area," first with something called Television News Incorporated (TVN), a right-wing news service Ailes worked on in the early 1970s after he got fired by the White House. According to Rolling Stone, TVN was financed by conservative beermonger Joseph Coors, and its mandate sounds exactly like a privately funded version of Capitol News Service: "[TVN] was designed to inject a far-right slant into local news broadcasts by providing news clips that stations could use without credit—and at a fraction of the true costs of production." Ailes was "the godfather behind the scenes" of TVN, Rolling Stone reported, and it was where he first encountered the motto that would make his career: "Fair and balanced."

Ailes at Fox News in 2006 (Getty)
Though it died in 1975, TVN was obviously an early trial run for the powerhouse Fox News would become. The ideas were the same—to route Republican-friendly stories around the gatekeepers at the network news divisions. In Nixon's day, the only way to do that was to pump stories directly to local stations. By 1996, cable television offered a much more powerful alternative. And the whole project began—on the taxpayer's dime—in the White House under the direction of a Watergate felon. One can only imagine how Fox News would report a similar scheme hatched in the Obama White House..

Danube of Thought


Melinda Romanoff

no snorkels.


Thanks for confirming what I told Sara on the crazy drug war thread. She said that she does the short form return (I assume she means the 1040EZ)which just asks you to list total income without specifics as to Social Security income. I was pretty sure that SS below $25000 is not taxed.

Also, since you are in California, you would know if you can get 'property tax credit' on your State Income tax return? Here in Michigan we have a form to claim it on our state tax return. Even if a person doesn't owe the state any income tax, it is worth filing just to get a partial refund of the property taxes you paid. I'm not sure if she owns her home, but if so with Sara's lower income she could get a nice refund on property taxes.


It was worse than he thought. He'll need to do another stimulus, this time $2T.

Reminds one of Theodoric, Barber of York.

"How's my little patient?"

"Not well, I'm afraid."

"Let's give her another bleeding, then. Nurse! Take two more pints."

Melinda Romanoff

I would refrain from discussing Sara's personal financial situation, even if you think you are trying to help.

What was discussed last night was wrong, and I am just as guilty in wanting to help, but in a public forum.

I would advise everyone to drop it, and apologize to her, IF she comes back. I'm going to write her to apologize, now.

I know better than what I participated in and owe her that apology. Think about it.

hit and run

"I will not rest"...This one is a year old, so doesn't include them all.

Here's one from March.

Though to be fair to Obama,the point of that post was that he was giving up saying "we will not rest".

He got tired of all that saying he wouldn't rest. It's taxing.

Danube of Thought

Not so sure, Mel. She laid out a lot of her personal data, and the people pointing out some avenues she might want to pursue might help, and can't hurt (provided she gets a professional to assist her).

Melinda Romanoff

Fair enough, it's just that's how I would want to be treated. Especially in a public forum.

Just the way I work, unless, of course, someone may have earned being "pantsed" at, say, the first school assembly of the year.


Mel: I agree with some of what you are saying. However, Sara has frequently given the most intimate of details about her personal financial situation in these comment sections - and without any prompting from us to do so. Why do we owe her an apology for something she brought to a public forum?

I don't feel I need to apologize for giving her information on a "hypothetical tax filing" that may (or may not) prove useful and of some benefit.

Many of us (myself, for instance) have also chosen of our own free will to discuss serious medical conditions and ask for advice and information concerning same. Some have disclosed painful relationship issues. Are finances especially taboo?

We are all adults here - telling what we want to, withholding what we want to.

I guess, I am not understanding what exactly you want apologies for? Could you explain?


SWarren: Just now saw your comment and your question. Almost afraid to answer it, lest I be accused of "pants(ing)" somebody - whatever the hell that means.

Sara, again in great detail, explained she is no longer a property owner, so no tax credit for property taxes.

And with that, I am closing up tax shop. Hell, I am not even a tax preparer, just an accounting firm office manager who tried to get a JOMer some free tax advice from my CPA co-workers, in order that said commenter might get a nice hefty sum of money returned rightfully to her.

Talk about being offended! Was I just pantsed?

Melinda Romanoff

Maybe more so for me, so, I'll eat my own crow and not share in the pie.

Well put.

Melinda Romanoff


You are standing in front of a very large crowd, perhaps on stage, someone comes up from behind and yanks your pants to the ground.

"Pantsed", Def. of

You haven't been in the least.


I posted also so I'll add my 2 cents. If I put facts out on JOM and someone here could look at them and say, I have some info that might help him; I would be upset if they didn't publish such help. No offense was intended by me.

Danube of Thought

I confess to being a little confused. Ccal, I thought what you told Sara was likely to be quite helpful, and I admired you for doing it. Still do.


I admired you for doing it. Still do.

Me, too. There are people here with extensive knowledge and experience in a vast range of real-life subjects, and a willingness to give advice that would cost money to obtain elsewhere. I always appreciate it when they take the time to provide such information, even if I don't need it.


LOL Centralcal, and well said.
I guess we were both pantsed. Certainly didn't mean to offend Sara in any way. Just wanted to give her a heads up that she is paying taxes that she doesn't need to pay. Now I wonder why IRS didn't return the tax payments and inform her that it was not owed.
One year I made a miscalculation on the amount I owed, sent in my return with a check payment. About a month or so later received a letter from IRS explaining my error and enclosed a check for the amount I overpaid. What a pleasant surprise!


Thanks, SWarren for a little levity. You can bet I hitched my panties up before they got in wad - well, a cocktail helped me in that regard. LOL.

Lucky you, that some IRS temp (!) probably trying hard to do their job (so rare!) did the right thing.

Our clients, especially regarding California taxes, are being put through all sorts of FUBAR paperwork because this damned state is broke and sitting at the bottom of the ocean. They are billing, double billing, ignoring payments made, returns filed - hoping the unsuspecting tax payer will - out of fear - just send in more moolah! Sadly, our commenter who shall not be named, lives in this once great state and really can't count on any accountability from them. Don't even get me started on Federal Obamaville.

Sara (Pal2Pal)

No one owes me an apology, although I do appreciate the sentiment behind the suggestion. If anything, it is I who owe the apology and I do apologize. I have been dealing with pneumonia the past 10 days, thanks to D-i-L bringing home some powerful bug from Indiana. After a few days of thinking I was much recovered, I relapsed and yesterday I felt like carp. Some other bad news and I just lost my cool and took it out here. I'm embarrassed now, but if there is any good, I had myself so worked up by the time I signed off, I ended up with one of those cleansing big cry woe is me marathons and once I let it all out to my dog and cat, I feel so much better and so much more clear-headed.

I really appreciate the tax advice and its potential. I will be checking into this starting first thing Monday morning.

I forget sometimes to stop allowing the big picture to overwhelm me and that if I follow my own advice of taking things one issue at a time and solving what I can first, nothing seems insurmountable then. Even though I've always been the idea person in my marriage, friendships, and family, lately with no one around to bounce some of my more out there ideas around with, I've let fear take hold to the point of sometimes feeling completely immobile and unable to act good or bad. And knowing that you've always been the go to person for those around you and now you need a go to person, you find out just how alone you are. Yesterday was the straw when I got a call from a close family member who started out yelling at me, "You've got to pull yourself together!" And, I thought, wow someone cares. Then the punch line, "I need you to figure out what I should do." I felt gut punched.

Anyway, I did what I've been doing since 2004, I came to JOM to get my mind off "stuff." And I start reading how people like me are free lunchers and pay no taxes and how it's all our fault, etc. Or that's what it sounded like in the state of mind I was in.

So, I apologize for my behavior and please everyone, do not be concerned. There are so many in much worse shape than I am. And now that I actually have something concrete to do right away (research the tax situation), I already feel better. It is now #1 on my list, as other things like getting out of Calif., or out of a 2-story house where it kills my back to try to negotiate the stairs, or living with a son and D-I-L that treat me as if I'm a 2 year old with Alzheimers and lay huge guilt trips on me because I can't pick up their slack like I stupidly did in the past, are not so quickly solved. It takes its toll and I lose all confidence. Oh this sounds so whiny.

Let me summarize, it was a very bad day, made worse because I was out of Diet Coke. :)

hit and run

I love you, Sara.


I just hope you get the refunds you have coming to you, Sara.

Amended tax returns are a pain in the butt, but for a relatively small amount of money, I think you could get some help in preparing them and get the money you have always had coming - back to you! Plus, you now know what to do in the future to avoid overpaying (or, rather, paying something you DO NOT owe.)


Sara, honey, I know the first thing I thought when I saw the advice about the 3 years of federal and 4 years of CA back taxes was, "Hey! If it's a big chunk of a couple of thousand in cash all at once, I bet Sara could pull the trigger on her plan to pack up and move to Florida!!!" I was all set to be comparing decorating advice on your new place! Just remember when you are feeling down and overwhelmed you've got a whole crowd of nutty friends who will joyfully join in on your every triumph!


Sara, just thought you ought to know that you often help make my day at JOM. :-)

Melinda Romanoff


I've always had your best interests at heart, just went too far with them, for me.

If I can help, just ask.


Glad things are looking up. Sara.


Whew, just got done giving my dog a tomato juice bath. She was out in the yard and when I opened the door to call her in I could smell that wonderful scent of skunk in the air. I thought oh noooo!!
Sure enough she came running in the door stinking to high heavens. Doused her with tomato juice and let it work for awhile then into a sweet smelling bubble bath. Oh the joys of living out in the country with lot of woods around us. All kinds of little critters!!

Hey Sara, glad you are back! You are a very sweet lady and I think it's obvious to all of us that your kids and grandkids are #1 in your life even though they can get you upset at times. Just hang in there, things WILL get better.

Melinda Romanoff


Since you're going to be washing the pooch again, I thought you might want a recipe that actually does what you want it to, as in get rid of the Skunk scent.

Make note of it, it's on our garage wall and in the laundry room.

You will not be disappointed.


Thanks Mel. I printed it out and will keep it handy.
I've always been told to use tomato juice which does work but you have to leave it in her coat for a while and try to keep her from licking it since it smells like people food to her. She took the hit on her chest area so it wasn't so easy for her to lick at it, but she sure tried..

Comanche Voter

Geez I could swear I heard the Bamster say that he was "going to have a laser like focus on jobs" a while back. Then the next day it was something else and the day after that it was something else.

I'd say he's got a bad case of Adult Attention Deficit Disorder. He either has the attention span of a gnat, or else he's just a semi accomplished bullshitter who doesn't realize that a few people in the audience remember what he said the day before. So long as you're all drones, he can, in the words of Huey P. Long, sell you Low Cockahirum on one day and High Cockalorum on the next. Or so he believes

Can't operate a laser with your shirt sleeves rolled up however.

Lord Whorfin says drill baby drill

To all regulars, especially Sara:
I have been a CPA since 1997, and earned my MBA in 1998, and work from home. (I'm my own boss!) I will be happy to answer general tax questions on a thread, and will respond to private email questions.

Re: Occam's Razor will be replaced by "Obama's Laser"


Thanks Mel. I printed it out and will keep it handy. I thought oh noooo!!
Sure enough she came running in the door stinking to high heavens. Doused her with tomato juice and let it work for awhile then into a sweet smelling bubble bath. Oh the joys of living out in the country with lot of woods around us. All kinds of little critters!!
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