Truth in politics has always been elusive and in today’s world is becoming more and more difficult to find. It is much easier to confuse the facts.
According to Governor Brown and much of the media, California has a budget surplus. However, outgoing state Controller John Chiang (a Democrat) hired actuaries who found that paying for all health benefits promised to current state employees when they retire will cost almost $72 billion. That is a much greater slice of the state budget than is now spent on retirees’ coverage. Governor Brown is due to unveil a plan to start paying down the retiree health program’s unfunded liabilities, which have grown by a third in the last eight years. The delay in dealing with this issue has raised the price tag considerably.
California offers retired employees subsidized health coverage that continues until the age of 65. At that point the state supplements Medicare benefits provided by the federal government. Retirees who work for the state for at least 10 years have 50% or more of their premiums covered. For those with 20+ years of service, California pays 100% of the average premium. However, California sets no money aside to pay for the future retirees’ healthcare costs. Employees do not contribute anything toward that cost. Payment for the retiree’s health coverage is taken from the general fund.
This pay-as-you-go system costs less short term but more in the long run. Because money is not collected until needed the funds cannot be invested. Retiree’s are living longer and healthcare costs more. The future bill is growing to gigantic proportions. According to the actuaries California now spends almost $1.9 billion a year.
The pay-as-you-go approach disguises the true cost of the benefits that the state negotiates with the unions representing the 261,000 active state workers and 168,000 retirees.
Pre-funding the benefits would make the cost clear. That would cost an extra $1.8 billion a year.
Mr. Chiang has proposed to increase the state’s contribution by $1.7 billion over five years. That would reduce the unfunded liability by almost $20 billion.
State workers should pitch in too and pay as Highway Patrol officers do. The Governor has also floated a plan in the past to require workers to work more years before qualifying for retiree health benefits.
California does not have a budget surplus.
Information from Los Angeles Times Editorial Board, 12/30/14.
In case you haven’t been paying attention there is a war on the middle class. There is a Democrat war plan. Here are the five main points.
1. Raise the cost of health insurance dramatically.
2. Make it mandatory.
3. Enforce it using the IRS.
4. Give subsidies to the poor.
5. Put the entire burden on the middle class.
All of this was done by the Democrats who voted unanimously for the Affordable Care Act. There was no public review of this bill. It just got pushed through. Not one Republican voted for the Act.
How else do you eliminate the middle class?
1. The cost of groceries is skyrocketing.
2. Gasoline is cheaper but not as cheap as it was in 2008.
3. Scream loudly about tax the rich and income inequality. The truly wealthy don’t care about income or taxes. Their money is already in the bank. Increased tax rates insure that those in the middle class will never join the ranks of the “rich”.
4. The artificial increase of lower incomes and the minimum wage will increase consumer prices and unemployment which squeezes the middle class.
Why do Democrats want to eliminate the middle class? Well, one reason is that the middle class is the primary voting block for Republicans and for conservatives.
In a communist system and theoretically in a socialist system, there is only room for two classes: the ruling class and the proletariat i.e. the struggling poor. The capitalistic-created American middle class is unique in a world which has historically been made up of the oppressed and the oppressors. The middle class in American is a recent phenomenon in world history. Unless we are alert it can be crushed.
Information from Andrew Thomas blogs on The American Thinker – January 1, 2015.
LET’S REVIEW THE STRUCTURE OF COMMON CORE EDUCATION STANDARDS
There is a lot of discussion and controversy about the Common Core Standards that are being used in schools around the country. Many “facts” are tossed about that are incomplete and often wrong. This is a review of the facts regarding Common Core.
The Common Core Standards (CCS) were funded and developed at the request of two Washington, D.C. based trade organizations: the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) and the National Governors Association (NGA) through their contractor Achieve, Inc.
Very generous funding came from the Gates foundation and other private philanthropies.
Common Core was developed in closed meetings without public debate, by committees. State legislators had no vote on the standards. Parents, Teachers and Taxpayers were not consulted regarding Common Core.
State Governors or State Boards of Education signed on to Common Core standards before even seeing the standards. They were pressured to do so and “bribed” by promises of federal Race to the Top (RTTT) grants by the Obama administration. However, only some states received money from the competitive RTTT grants. Governors had to apply and sign on to the Standards before ever seeing the curriculum or standards.
The principal organizations associated with Common Core State Standards have accepted millions from Bill Gates and the Gates Foundation. Education is being nationalized, as is our healthcare, to eliminate local control over education, imposing a one-size-fits-all, top-down curriculum that will also affect private schools and home schooled children.
DATA MINING is one of the major components of Common Core.
Most people do not realize that Common Core gives schools and third parties (ultimately the government) unprecedented access to the personal information of students.
The federal government is prohibited legally from gathering student specific data for a national database. However, the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) – Stimulus Bill provided a loophole. Money from ARRA was given to each state to develop longitudinal data systems to catalog data generated by Common Core tests.
The U.S. Department of Education reinterpreted the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act to permit a student’s academic record to be shared with virtually anyone including non-governmental organizations without prior written parental consent.
The data that can be collected includes hobbies, psychological evaluations, medical records, religious affiliation, political affiliation, family income, behavioral problems, disciplinary history, career goals, addresses and bus stop times and locations.
A $100M public school database was spearheaded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The database was developed to share student information with private companies that sell educational products and services so the accumulated information can be used to create new tailored products.
It is recommended that parents study the educational standards in Common Core.
Google: Peggy Nickel and Common Core in Sonoma County and many sites come up.
As humorous as this may sound.....every last word of it is absolutely TRUE.
Here are the 2,700 pages of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (a.k.a. Obama Care) condensed to 4 sentences:
1. In order to insure the uninsured, we first have to uninsure the insured.
2. Next, we require the newly uninsured to be re-insured.
3. To re-insure the newly uninsured, they are required to pay extra charges to be re-insured.
4. The extra charges are required so that the original insured, who became uninsured, and then became re-insured, can pay enough extra so that the original uninsured can be insured, which will be free of charge to them.
This, ladies and gentlemen, is called redistribution of wealth … or, by its more common name, SOCIALISM.
Thought you would appreciate this.