The Jewish Observer,
4-11 Adar, 5778 Feb. 19-25, 2018 -- THE JEWISH OBSERVER, LOS ANGELES -- 603rd Web Ed.
LET’S GET REAL!
By ISRAEL TEITELBAUM
Now that we have a president that recognizes a reality that dates back to biblical times – almost three thousand years – the time has come for us all to recognize the reality upon which our Founders established the greatest united nation in history. “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”
Only one month ago, those who rely on fake media were led to believe that the biggest violator of women’s dignity was an old Republican Senator who dated teenage girls 40 years ago, which was substantiated with a message he had written in a girl’s yearbook describing her as sweet and beautiful. Now we have learned that such violations have been running rampant among politicians, newscasters and in the entertainment world, and was covered up for years. Even when this truth was finally revealed, reporters acted like they were shocked by this news. We now know this too was faked.
Those of us who follow political news have been led to believe that the biggest threat to our political system occurred when the American People chose Donald Trump over Hillary Clinton. We now know this to have been based on a long string of lies that will likely continue until next November, when we will be presented with the wonderful opportunity to elect those who will replace “the most dangerous man to ever occupy the White House” – with a true “Progressive.”
Those of us who followed the election of the last Progressive President in 2008, were led to believe that America had elected the savior of our democratic republic. He was going to fix the Progressive policies that led millions of Americans to lose their life savings. He was also going to restore “transparent government” and “do what works.”
It took only about one month into his presidency for Americans to learn that he planned to do nothing of the kind. When he rushed through the $787 billion “Stimulus Package” – “borrowing” this money from children yet unborn – we quickly learned the truth. When we saw that this bill also included a clause to kill the lifesaving DC Scholarship Program – costing $18 million at the time – Americans recognized that we had elected a “wolf in sheep’s clothing.”
This gave rise to the Tea Party Movement – the most powerful such political force in a generation - which quickly mushroomed across the USA. Not to be outdone, the IRS was sent out to silence this movement, and gain Progressives four more years to consolidate their power. We have been getting a taste of this power every day since President Donald Trump took office. His first year in office resembles a maze with no way out, and major plans are in place for Progressives to set things right –actually left- in 2018.
The only “truth” that Progressives recognize is that which enriches and empowers them, which can only be taken from the American People, including generations yet unborn. As taught by President Woodrow Wilson, the truths which our founders held to be self-evident, read now “like documents taken out of a forgotten age.” Tragically, we have been heading downhill ever since he took office in 1913, with brief rest stops, such as the eight years of President Ronald Reagan.
The elections of 2018 may be our last opportunity to save our ship of state from a complete takeover by Progressives. This can only be done by ordinary Americans working in total harmony to replace all Progressives in government -regardless of party- with true Patriots who have proven themselves to be givers – not takers. “Bribery blinds the eyes of the wise and corrupts the words of the righteous,” which is taught in the document “from a forgotten age,” applies to those who pass our laws, just as those who enforce them.
It’s time for us to get real, and restore the truths, which our self-sacrificing Founders held to be self-evident. Every American citizen can help by signing up to vote, and electing only those willing to sponsor the bill that will restore the truths that made us great on July 4, 1776.
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. Accordingly, all parents are to be empowered to provide their children with quality K-12 education that meets their needs, talents and faith, for one-half the cost of their local public school, provided they are taught and trained to comply with the laws of their city, state and country. Half the savings are to be returned to taxpayers and half are to pay down government debt.”
With the help of every liberty loving American, and these one hundred words, we can usher in a new era of domestic tranquility, prosperity, liberty and justice.
Mollette, Glenn, contributing columnist
Reuben, Liz editor
Israel Teitelbaum, contributing columnist
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Copyright @ 2018, The Jewish Observer, Los Angeles, All Rights Reserved. (5778)
AMERICA'S GOVERNMENT PENSION PAIN
By DR. GLENN MOLLETTE
Stories of struggling government pension funding have abounded the last few months. Reports of changing the retirement scenario for state employees are dominating the conversation in states like New Jersey, Illinois, California and Kentucky.
Seventy-five year old retired Americans aren't interested in going back to work. However, if state government pensions are cut some may feel like they have to.
Already, Wal-Mart, McDonalds, Target, Starbucks and scores of other retailers are filled with America's seniors trying to at least make grocery money to survive during their senior years. The picture of an 80 year old who has to work just to make payment on his government subsidized housing and to afford a few groceries is not a pretty picture of America.
Americans grew up in the sixties and seventies believing that someday most of us would be millionaires. During Jimmy Carter's Presidency and runaway inflation era all the projections concerning 401k-pensions were that they would yield at least a million dollars in savings. A friend of mine who recently retired and paid into a 401k annuity plan prescribed by his company for 35 years had approximately $350,000 saved to live on the rest of his life. That sounds like a nice chunk of money but it won't go far.
Take for example a state government pensioner whose retirement is $4,000 a month. Some are a bit less and many are a lot more. However, this is $48,000 a year plus medical insurance benefits. A state government employee who retires at 52 and lives for 30 years will collect $1,440,000 plus occasional cost of living increases, plus health insurance.
It doesn't take a genius to figure out that a defined benefit retirement will produce a lot more yield over a lifetime than a 401k-pension. A 401k requires a very grueling disciplined lifestyle of saving lots of money and doing without today in hopes of having money for the golden years. Most of America's current workers cannot fathom of trying to save $10,000 to $18,000 a year into a retirement plan because they need every penny today to live on. College loan debt, house payments and often one or two small children consume every penny. By the time people start seriously paying into a 401k-pension the race is on. You can't build much in 20 years unless you are paying $15,000 or more a year into a fund. Thus, most people need 30 to 35 years today to accumulate much money. A government pension that promises you
$4,000 to $5,000 of money every month the rest of your life after working 28 years is a deal that is hard to beat.
Government retirements and other industries for years have afforded their retirees defined benefit retirements secured on the backs of what other people will pay into the fund. Social Security today is in trouble because the money people paid into it was not kept in reserve for the retirees. Instead we have spent it on Vietnam, Afghanistan and anything the government wanted to spend it on. Thus, we are already being warned that in 15 of so years there will not be enough people paying enough money into Social Security to fully pay America's future retirees what was promised.
One major problem we are trying to survive as Americans is the politicians who have been in office for so many years. They have taken care of themselves and failed Americans. Sadly, we keep electing them, and they keep failing us.
Saving American's pensions will take an all out effort. We can't just kick the can down the road. Eventually there will be no more money to borrow because the ability to pay it back will be impossible which is where we are throughout our country.
I do believe Americans will do their part if government will do its part. Most pensioners would reluctantly take a painful ten percent cut if it meant saving the system. Retirees would probably be willing to work to 59, but when you start at 25 that is still 34 years of work. A combination of state pension and Social Security would be a workable solution as well.
More taxes are not the answer. A huge segment of people paying taxes in states like Illinois, New Jersey and Kentucky who are all in big trouble are state pensioners. The state pensioners can't afford any more taxes than the person next door. The idea of taxing the rich doesn't solve the issue because the rich people can all move their residency to another state including Texas, Tennessee or Florida where they don't have a state income tax.
States with increasing income taxes aren't doing so great - consider Illinois. Illinois can't afford to pay their lottery winners. A friend of mine said he was supposed to receive about $200 back on his state income tax filing but knew Illinois would never give it back to him and he was right, they didn't. They don't have the money. The new tax rate for individuals in Illinois is 4.95 percent as of July 1, 2017. Kentucky collects 6% from its highest earners. If you earn over one half million dollars a year you pay 8.97% in state income tax in New Jersey. If you earn between $75,001 and $500,000 then the rate is 6.37% in New Jersey. In Florida the state income tax is zero. However, you do pay a 6% sales tax. In Florida you do not have to pay tax on income from an S corporation.
One major plus of a 401k-pension fund is that at least it is your money. If you have saved two or three hundred thousand dollars then you can count on it. You can spend it or leave it to your children. One thing about your government pension in this new modern era is - you probably can count on it - just probably not all of it.
Glenn Mollette, Washington, DC