It’s time to mention several topics, rather than just one, in my column this week.
First of all, please mark your calendars for two important dates. There are two Tea Party rallies being held in Walton this month at Robinson’s Auction Barn from 9 a.m. to noon. The dates are Saturday and June 19. Please make every attempt to participate and give this new group our strong support.
Another observation: The last few times I have driven down Main Street in Oneonta, I noticed something different but couldn’t put my finger on it. A good friend, W.S., nailed it for me. He said it was the absence of the anti-war sign wavers who used to be present every week, and he was right. Where did they go?
I consider myself pretty well-read, but I must have missed the fact that the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq were over. I double-checked, and sure enough they were still going full blast, especially in Afghanistan.
As a matter of fact, Obama, following the successful Bush doctrine, actually sent more troops to Afghanistan. At the time I wondered why the number of protesters didn’t increase dramatically when he did this.
The only reason I can come up with is that these individuals really didn’t care about the wars — or our brave troops — at all. They were simply the same old, unoriginal Bush-haters who saw their numbers dwindling and their hero, Barack Obama, failing. This is a perfect example of what you get when people like these put politics first and sacrifice their principles.
Third, the same friend pointed out to me the fact that the congressional health care bill HR3590 requires that health insurance premiums paid by employers be shown on individuals’ W-2s by 2011. He called our U.S. congressman to find out if this was true and whether the premiums would be taxable.
As is probably typical with almost all of our representatives, he didn’t know initially. To his credit, he eventually sent my friend a letter with what he found out. Yes, it is a requirement, but no, not all plans will be taxed, just the “Cadillac plans.”
Unfortunately, he didn’t define what a “Cadillac plan” was. Also, he said that the levels were inflation-adjusted, but since medical costs are increasing faster than the rate of inflation, that only means that more and more plans, and taxpayers, will be subject to this new tax.
Maybe someone can tell me why the insurance premiums paid have to be included on an individual’s W-2 to begin with.
If you really believe that it is an innocent requirement and the premiums will never be taxed, then you will probably be foolish enough to vote for Obama all over again.
Finally, don’t you wish we had a leader with a backbone like Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu? He actually puts the safety and security of his own countrymen over world opinion. Obama just wants everyone, especially the bad guys, to like us.
Someone want to tell me where the reasoning is incorrect? Israel and Egypt formed the blockade in 2007 when Hamas took control of Gaza from the rival Fatah party after Israel unilaterally withdrew. The blockade is simply to prevent weapons from being smuggled in by sea. The ships are then told to dock at a nearby Israeli port and trucks will transport the humanitarian aid to Gaza. Just last November, a ship bound for Gaza was seized after 200 tons of weapons were discovered.
The terms of this blockade were well known by all since it was instituted. The blockade itself was legal according to international law. Three cheers for Israel for putting the safety of its citizens first and foremost.
Here’s an idea. Why don’t all these anti-Semite Palestinian sympathizers take themselves and their families and relocate to the towns and villages near Gaza. Let them put their children at risk of the hundreds, if not thousands, of rockets that have been fired upon these areas.
It’s just like those idealistic Americans who went to Iraq to chain themselves to hospitals and schools so that American bombers wouldn’t bomb these facilities (knowing full well that our Air Force wouldn’t do that, anyway).
When Saddam Hussein instead wanted them to be located around military facilities, they put their tails between their legs and scurried home to safety. Once again, so much for principles.
And where has the mainstream media been defending Israel’s actions? As usual, AWOL As columnist Joel Mowbry said: “Much like the narrative of Israel’s ‘peace-loving’ enemies, the story of the mainstream media’s downfall is pretty straightforward. As the news titans have continued to disregard the truth, the general public has likewise decided to disregard them.”
Tom Sears is a professor of accounting at Hartwick College in Oneonta. He can be reached at SearsT@hartwick.edu. His column appears every other week. His columns can be found at www.thedailystar.com/tomsears.
It’s time to mention several topics, rather than just one, in my column this week.
- Big Chuck D'Imperio
Upstate theme parks offered affordable thrills
I saw in the news last week that Disney theme parks are raising admission prices to almost $100 a person. Children (who Uncle Walt considers 10 and under) are now $86 a day.Continued ...
- Getting creative with gifts for grads
- Safety Patrol D.C. visits never get old
- My pal Brucie, savior of Sidney's hospital
- Catching a whiff of 'Vermont Vapor'
- Upstate theme parks offered affordable thrills
- Cary Brunswick
Book-banning has a tendency to backfire
So what does the 1960s game show ``What's My Line'' got to do with the Bloomsday festivities occurring in Dublin, Ireland, this week? Surprisingly, there is a link.Continued ...
- Envisioning a world without terror
- We've become our own worst enemies
- Plenty of blame to go around for Bangladesh horror
- Obama is going against his word on Social Security
- Book-banning has a tendency to backfire
- Chuck Pinkey
- Guest Column
- Lisa Miller
A view from above
Fire towers in the Catskill Mountains have always been destination points, built to capture some of the region’s best views. These sentinel stations served an important role for the earliest possible sightings of forest fires in the remote mountain ranges. But the fire towers and those who manned them fulfilled a multitude of other roles as well.Continued ...
- Being a parent is a constant learning process
- Healthy doesn't have to mean expensive
- A family era ends with close of Potter series
- Independent stores make up for loss of Borders
- A view from above
- Mark Simonson
- Otsego County woman drove her way to success
- 'Robber baron' helped provide landmark church in Roxbury
- Bridge workers found toxic surprise in Neahwa Park in 1988
- Oneonta became a movie set in June 1918
- Local marbles players sought national championship in 1948
- Rick Brockway
Don't play around with snappers
The other day, I was driving along Route 205 between Mount Vision and Hartwick. Suddenly, I had to swerve out of my lane to miss a huge snapping turtle. It was crossing from a large swamp on the left to some higher ground on the other side of the road.
- Emmons Pond Bog is pretty easy to enjoy
- Fishing has gotten a lot more complex
- Waterfalls are even better when you keep them to yourself
- Kids have sparkle in their eyes
- Don't play around with snappers
- Sam Pollak
Justice Dept., IRS abuses worth screaming about
"If this had happened while a Republican was president, the liberal media would be screaming."Continued ...
- THIS WEEK'S POLL
- Using time off in the worst way possible
- Terror lives on, and there's no end in sight
- Remembering the glory of their times
- Justice Dept., IRS abuses worth screaming about
- William Masters
Schreibman tops Chris Gibson on women's issues
As the time to vote draws near, we need to remember how money can run politics more than we can. Raising funds is a prominent (if not the dominant) task of getting elected. Raising issues is also crucial, but those efforts are subject to distortion and fear-mongering.
- Republicans feelentitled to allthey can garner An entitlement is a legal benefit available from the government to individuals who are within a defined category of recipients, such as needing insurance for unemployment or health services.
Romney focuses on self; Obama emphasizes unity
Mitt Romney criticizes President Obama for saying a person's success is rooted in his community, and is not all his alone. Romney belittles this with his belief in individual initiative. He is better at the put-down than the push-up.
Romney shows little regard for common man
The Republicans in Congress have voted over and over, 33 times, redundantly and uselessly, to rescind what they call Obamacare.
Scouts' gay ban creates problem where none exists
The Boy Scouts of America's "emphatic reaffirmation" of its vow to exclude any and all homosexuals from its hallowed ranks is ill-considered and pathetic, especially in view of its having reviewed the matter for two years.
- Schreibman tops Chris Gibson on women's issues