William Thien

Lately we have been hearing from the Democratic Party elite, in particular those who consider themselves socialists to a varying extent, that they think America needs a single payer health care system where essentially the government pays your medical bills, not several hundred different insurance schemes to include Medicare and Medicaid.

There is some merit to that argument in my opinion.

Why? Well, when you have multiple systems of administrative bureaucracies in charge of paying for the public’s health care, you have large numbers of personnel involved in billing and transactions for example that do not provide any health services or health care themselves, but in the case of The US they take the lion’s share of the money going in to the health care system. This is of course a tragedy considering that many people are bankrupted under this system, what the media and the government tells us almost on a daily basis is the best health care in the world.

No efficiently run and or profitable business in the world runs effectively by having large numbers of people getting paid for essentially doing nothing to to contribute to the efforts to produce the products sold or the selling of the products, unless of course if you work in The US Health Care industry.

Another thing to consider is that in countries that have a single payer system, there is a good chance that the population lives longer. With longevity being the ultimate statistic, that also says a lot about single payer health care systems.

It seems like a no-brainer to go to a single payer system.

Single payer systems also costs less than paying in to three or four systems such as what you pay for your private insurance plus what you pay in to Medicare and Medicaid on your pay check in the form of a tax. If you tally up what your private insurance costs with what you pay for Medicare and Medicaid, chances are you are paying two or three times more for health care than what people pay in countries with single payer systems. That’s right.

They don’t want you to know that. Why don’t they want you know that? There is too much money in it for you to know the truth. The health care industry is making a “killing” on health care in America.

Jobs in the health care industry have always paid well since such positions require an advanced education and experiences that are generally considered very specific. But health care as an industry hasn’t always been gouging at the patient like it has been for the last twenty or thirty years. And there is a reason for that. Reagan. Good old Ronnie Reagan deregulated health care in America during his presidency.

Prior to the Reagan presidency, most working Americans paid for many health care procedures out-of-pocket and could afford health insurance themselves if their employer didn’t pay for it. But Reagan fell to the whims of big pharma and medicine and big media who saw an opportunity to make huge sums of money selling airtime to advertise the latest drug of the day.

So, a question arises in such a historical reference. Is it necessary to socialize medicine in America or simply return to a period in the country’s history where medicine is once again properly regulated, before good old Hollywood manufactured fake cowboy Ronald Reagan rode along and made large portions of the country sick and or bankrupt?

Well, what’s the difference between socialized medicine and regulated medicine anyway, many will ask, primarily because most do not even understand what socialism truly is or what regulation means.

Socialism is where the government takes your money and uses it to pay for the needs of others, plain and simple. You don’t have a choice what is done with your money. Medicare and Medicaid are forms of socialism. The money will come straight out of your paycheck. You will never see it. Costs will be manipulated by big health insurance lobbies and more and more will come out of your paycheck every year. When it comes to health care, you can bet on it like betting on a one horse race.

Were the country to return to a properly regulated market where the onslaught of drug ads on television were curtailed and health care providers had their costs controlled, the cost to the average American would more likely return to something the individual and family could reasonably afford, just as before Reagan decided to deregulate health care in America and then quickly galloped off to his ranch in California and slowly died in his Hollywood bullshit cowboy boots. The government of course would have to step in to control prices, something I bet they are unwilling to do or incapable of doing effectively on behalf of the consumer, anymore.

Knowing that all the country really needs is to return to a properly regulated health care system such as that before the Reagan era, is the current wave of candidates merely offering up the impossible, a completely socialized system, or are they creating some form of conversational diversion, a distraction, a false promise? They are after all politicians. Or do they simply have no historical clue as to how the health care system was run prior to Reagan?

In other words, if all that needs to be done in America is to properly regulate health care once again, something governments are supposed to do, properly regulate industry that is, then is the relatively recent promise of socialized medicine really just a false narrative?

I think this next presidential election will tell.

Copyright © William Thien 2019

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The reason the mass media and the Democratic Party are still focusing on the so-called “Russian Connection” long after it has been shown to not truly have had a direct effect on the election results is because the traditional media is becoming less and less relevant when it comes to electioneering, campaign advertising revenue, and direct control of the elections. What the “Russian Connection” is really about to the mass media is competition.

Since the “Russian Connection” activity occurred on social media, the traditional mass media has focused on it like a laser because the mass media are realizing that they are no longer a significant player in the campaign cycle. It’s about competition in the media marketplace.

When the internet was first becoming popular and people began migrating away from sitting in front of the television to the internet, the mass media didn’t have anything positive to say about the internet either. It was merely a platform for pornography. Children will have nightmares and they will all be abducted if they use the internet. The fear mongering in the mass media was constant. I remember all of the bogus studies about the internet that the mass media paraded in front of a fearful audience.

Now the younger generations don’t receive their news from the mass media and the older generations don’t trust it much any longer.

Is there a valid concern about the “Russian Connection?” Of course there is. But the “Russian Connection” we are hearing so much about is more about relevance than anything else and how the traditional media isn’t doing it for America any more.

Copyright © William Thien 2019

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Recently I asked the question, “Are there valid reasons for socialized medicine in America?” and concluded that, ‘yes, there are.’

But if you ask me, socialized medicine in an economy like ours seems a bit drastic. Besides, we have two socialized systems already, Medicare and Medicaid. I also asked the question, “who is going to pay for it?” We don’t really have an answer to that yet in The United States.

In my opinion we might be better off as a country if we simply went back to a state of properly regulating medicine prior to Reagan’s deregulation of it, back to a time when medical advertisement was regulated to control costs to the consumer and to prevent misrepresentation of benefits to the patient by unscrupulous advertisers, when hospitals and health organizations were not allowed to limit treatments, and the media wasn’t flooded to the gills with specialty drug ads where everyone is either a rock star after taking a particular drug or going to a party where they are the center of attention. Really?

Prior to the deregulation of medicine in America anyone could purchase health insurance and it wasn’t a completely outrageous expenditure that unlike today didn’t really cover anything normal. I’m talking about deductibles and co-pays. Insurance didn’t steal your discretionary income for the month so you could take a vacation every now and then or buy a new piece of furniture.

Since the deregulation of medicine, an industry that in anyone’s right mind should be properly regulated, medical costs have skyrocketed.

Medical costs skyrocketed because the costs of advertising and other expenditures entirely unrelated to health care have been incorporated into the costs of treatment. But prior to deregulation treatment and drug costs were still handled by private industry. They were not socialized.

Many of medicine’s component costs such as the cost of advertising and excessive insurance costs were eliminated by proper regulation. Socialized medicine didn’t really become a major issue for the entire population until medicine was deregulated.

In other words, it is advertisers and the media and a new business model for medicine following deregulation that have driven costs up making medicine impossible to pay for without some form of subsidy.

It happened during the Reagan era so many in America are either too old to remember it or so young they’ve never known, but Reagan and Nixon deregulated medicine. Prior to that, medicine was affordable.

I think if we returned to a period in the country’s history where medicine were once again properly regulated, costs would return to normal and socialized medicine wouldn’t be necessary.

The question remains, are our elected capable of accomplishing proper regulation of medicine in America or have they surrendered their values for good? Do we even have candidates willing to make it happen? With a media profiting thoroughly from the lucrative advertisements for drugs and medical care, they will surely be working against regulation.

Nobody wants to properly regulate anything anymore. You constantly here that there are too many regulations and just about every candidate says this and that need to be deregulated for this and that reason and there is some industry association or some large conglomerate behind them. That might be true for many industries but when it comes to the country’s health, clearly deregulation hasn’t been a good idea.

I haven’t heard one candidate mention regulation of medicine over socialization. They either are oblivious of the history of the regulation of medicine in America or simply socialists with an agenda. Or they have their hand in it and when it comes to politics in America, I’d say the latter seems the most likely.

Copyright © William Thien 2019

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I think the answer to that is obvious.

I support a regime of tariffs but not as widespread as it has become. I believe that the tariffs should reside primarily outside of the traditional consumer markets and focus on materials (metals and component materials) and heavy equipment, high technology. Otherwise, the consumer and the investor suffer. We are seeing that now.

China is also suffering substantially so there is good reason for both sides to revisit the bargaining table and sideline the negotiators that haven’t brought the matter to fruition.

I’ve said previously that perhaps The US should institute a truth-in-lending campaign to educate the American public about the true nature of the Chinese political system. That can be done a number of ways to include a PSA on the nature and meaning of The Chinese flag and it should be placed in plain view on packaging containing goods from China. Add to that examples of what the Chinese public must endure at the hands of the government, and the list could be expanded. Retail outlets that carry more than a certain amount of products of Chinese origin should be required to notify customers somehow.

Students could be taught the revolutionary history of China and what happened soon thereafter.

Whatever path The US chooses during what many will agree is a dispute with China that needs to take place in some shape or form, whether it be tariffs or educational efforts, what is occurring now is not working. The idea behind the tariffs is not to make the public suffer, it is the opposite. If the tariffs continue in the current form, that appears to be inevitable by the simple fact that this country is so heavily invested in China that political friction will have economic consequences.

To a certain extent I believe the current administration is reacting to the public’s demand for action on the matter, which is the sign of responsive leadership.

But this country’s leadership at all levels should not feel restricted to a confrontational approach to the matter of unfair trade practices and should use whatever methods available. It is in fact the current administration that created an incredible economic surge in the first place with massive tax breaks for corporate America. It would be a shame to see all of that erased.

Continuing with broadly stroked, widespread tariffs should be reconsidered.

Copyright © William Thien 2019

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When you examine all of the pressures on the middle classes in America and in particular how wages have been stagnant for decades some of the causes are more obvious than others. For example, Congress gave tax breaks for American producers to offshore production taking jobs away from American middle-class workers. Then NAFTA was ratified. Finally, our borders are porous enough to let illegals in that work for cash under the table and pay no taxes, further undermining American workers.

Those are the more obvious pressures on the middle class worker and the current administration seems to be attempting to address two of them, NAFTA and what has lately been called “the border crisis.” The current administration has also been dealing directly with the problem of off-shored production by negotiating better trade deals with Asian producers, namely China, that have been involved in unfair trade practices.

But there is a less obvious but just as pervasive force applying downward pressure on wages in America, the social safety net, the massive size of it, in particular how it addresses the female.

Because a woman can frequently achieve more income and benefits by having children out-of-wedlock instead of getting married, employers don’t need to pay the male counterpart a family level living wage.

If a married family is struggling to make ends meet, what usually happens in America? The marriage frequently ends in a divorce. In fact the average divorce rate is close to 50 percent. What is interesting about that though not a corollary, fifty percent of marriages end in a divorce and 50 percent of children are born to out-of-wedlock mothers.

Though not directly related, one does not exactly cause the other, what the numbers tell us is that a huge proportion of families are destroyed by the current circumstances, the prevalence of a massive social safety net designed to enable reproduction and child maintenance, tax incentives for employers to offshore production, and a ready supply of illegal alien workers.

I believe this is why you hear corporate executives claiming to be liberal when in public. The socialist system actually enables them to keep control of the cost of labor, to tamp it down. What do you mean we don’t pay you enough money, fuck you! Get a divorce and tell your wife to go on public assistance. If that doesn’t work, I’ll just have to hire illegals, and if that doesn’t work I’ll just have to off shore production.

The social safety net is not only a safety net for the unfortunate, it helps to save employers from having to pay better wages because there is a suitable alternative out there for raising children which is why 50 percent of the children are born to unmarried women. It’s not an accident so many children are born that way to unmarried women. That’s how the system wants it.

That’s why when I hear contemporary corporate leaders talking about how great socialism or liberalism is and what it does for the country or that they are liberal-minded, I am always suspicious of their motives. We have seen socialism and communism fail on a grand scale with the fall of The Soviet Union and in other socialist or communist countries throughout the last 75 years and we have historical and statistical proof that socialism doesn’t work when it is the prevalent political system in a country. Socialism doesn’t just benefit the downtrodden or less fortunate, corporate America lines up to the trough as well by benefiting from the downward pressure socialism puts on wages in America. Make no mistake. Corporate America lines up at the trough in the medical industry with Medicare and Medicaid and Social Security. It is guaranteed payment, large sums of money pumped into the medical field, and it is why prices are driven up, more money in the system. That’s basic economics.

Corporate America lines up at the trough for food stamps and nutrition related programs. Grocery stores love food stamps and nutrition assistance programs. It’s more money. It drives prices up. That again is just basic economics.

Corporate America likes socialism. It is a direct line to tax payer money forced upon the American worker taken from their paychecks with no recourse. Corporate America also likes that the social safety net puts downward pressure on wages. That is why you haven’t seen wages for the working stiff increase in decades. Corporate America likes socialism. Capitalists like forced socialism. They don’t pay for any of it and yet they get the tax break. The worker does not get the tax break.

That’s the big lie about socialism in America. The capitalists love it. It’s easy money. And who can blame them?!

The more the working person knows that, in particular single men and women that know that, the better the chance they have of taking home more of what they earn and earning more at the same time instead of paying for everything twice and getting nothing in return. That’s why you shouldn’t trust a socialist. You’ll pay for the socialism in your taxes and you will pay for it lower wages. You will pay twice.

Things won’t get better for the working stiff in America until you curtail the extensive socialism at all levels.

Copyright © William Thien 2019

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Here is my solution to the border crisis. Select all of the single females ages 18 to 30 and allow them entry in to The United States and send every one else back.

Why?

For quite some time now close to and occasionally exceeding fifty percent of the children in The United States have been born to single mothers, nearly half of all babies. Women are not compelled to get married any longer because of the social safety net.

Yet, when I examine the various places I work and have worked, there are often large numbers of single men aged thirty, forty, or fifty years old, many older, never having settled down and gotten married, never seeing over the period of decades a tax break for having a family or greater withholding on their pay checks, tax surrogates instead they are for the sexual proclivities of a nation.

Why are there so many single men?

Social welfare, the so-called social safety net, promiscuous single women having children out-of-wedlock because often the government benefits stack up to more in terms of dollars than a decent job pays, pays particularly in an economy that has seen stagnation of wages for close to thirty years or more.

Social welfare pays many single women better than their were-to-be husbands could make because wages haven’t risen for so long and so consequently many make the conscious decision to f!@# and s!@# until they get pregnant and then go on the public dime. That public dime is all of the single men out there in the work force, the tax surrogates for the socialized system that straps them with the sexual outcomes of hordes of women they have never met, what once would have been called “whores” but now are just “unfortunate.” Yeah, right.

And I’m not just talking about women of one color, what were once called “welfare mommas.” At fifty percent of the children born out-of-wedlock, women of all colors are doing it (pun intended).

“Bill, yer getting really harsh.”

So, my solution to the border crisis is to select from the throngs massing at the border all of the single females from 18 to 30 of age (consent could be lower in some states, I don’t know) and let them come in to the country and send the others back.

Those females are fleeing a violent situation, which they claim anyway with their applications for “asylum.” They claim they are fleeing violent gangs, rapes, murders, starvation, you name it. They all put it on their applications for asylum. So if they are coming here anyway, let’s keep them off of the public dole and make good on The American Promise to all of those men who have supported the “American Way” (now known to many as the socialist f!@# and s!@# economy).

Let’s pay back those single men who have supported the promiscuity of a nation with their single male status as tax surrogates paying a disproportionate amount of taxes for years so women could have children out-of-wedlock and families could write off their children, for years, for decades.

That’s my solution to the border crisis. Those females are coming here anyway. Chances are, since nobody is speaking for them, they will be looking for a government check at some time or another. That appears to be the plan. I haven’t heard any others. Work for cash? Undermine the American worker who hasn’t seen a wage increase in eons? That, too.

Use the border crisis to make good on a promise. Fulfill a promise to the men of America, that now rusting, now rotting on the vine socialist promise, what once was called The American Dream.

That’s my solution. I think it is a good one.

Next you’ll see the media will take it off the air. There will no longer be coverage of “the crisis at the border!” Nobody likes a solution in a socialist country. That would mean they don’t need socialism any more.

Copyright © William Thien 2019

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The problem with having a tax revolt at the individual level is that individuals never see the money paid to the government for income taxes. Their employers act as an often unwilling agent of the state by directly withdrawing their income taxes from their pay and giving it directly to the government. So the individual doesn’t have the option of saying, “No, you are doing things with my taxes substantially in a way I disagree with and so I’m going to keep my tax monies until you change your ways.” That’s not an option anymore. That is of course one of the primary reasons why taxes keep going up and up. There is no individual control over the method of taxation.

Because the individual never sees the money used to pay their income taxes aside from a description on their earnings statements, they have essentially been stripped of that money because they have no authority to control what is done with the result of their own labor. That is of course what makes it a form of theft in the modern day historical definition that “taxation is theft.”

The only way to have a true tax revolt in today’s day and age would be for employers to perhaps take a vote of their employees and if the majority of the employees don’t think their taxes should come out of their pay automatically, then the employers disburse their complete wages and salaries directly to their employees and the employees can either pay their taxes or withhold them, based on their beliefs. Or some variation of that.

To my knowledge, that is not an option currently, but perhaps it should be.

Copyright © William Thien 2019

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The reason the Mueller Report took so long to complete is that the investigation needed to go beyond the mid-term elections. The Democratic Party knew there was no Russian collusion. The objective wasn’t to discover any collusion, rather it was to install Socialist-Democrats during the mid-term elections, almost two years after the investigation began.

The objective of The Mueller Investigation was to create doubt in the minds of those voters on the fence and force them over to the Socialist-Democrats. It worked. We now have avowed socialists in office throughout the country and as many Democrats who probably don’t even recognize that they are socialists.

By indicting anyone and everyone surrounding the President on whatever charge they could levy, the opposition sent the voters to the ballot box with a big question on their minds and many changed their ideology. That is clear by the results of the election.

So, it is my opinion that the reason the report took so long to complete was so that it went beyond the mid-term elections and threw the election in favor of the Socialist-Democrats.

It worked. Remember that the next time you go to vote.

Copyright © William Thien 2019

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Some like to refer to Social Security as an “entitlement,” because you pay in to it all your life and so when you retire, you should benefit. It’s therefor in their minds an entitlement.

Wrong! You never see the principal again. Unlike when you contribute to a 401K (which is taxed all to hell before you get back at it to remove the principal or receive payments), or an IRA for that matter, unlike both of them with Social Security you only ever see your payments, if you live long enough to get them. Therefor, Social Security is a tax, not an entitlement. You will never see your principal again.

You might have contributed many tens of thousands of dollars or more which upon death your offspring or siblings will never see again in the form of money willed to them. And throughout your life you must pay Social Security Taxes on your income. You have no choice.

Social Security is not an entitlement, it’s a tax. Add it to your Federal and State income tax to see your total tax liability. Call it what it is. You can’t change it until you realize what it truly is, a tax. It’s a tax because you never see your principal again. Gone are thousands and thousands of dollars that you could have prospered with upon retirement. Instead, you get a measly monthly payment.

Don’t let the communists fool you.

Copyright © William Thien 2019

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Undoubtedly the Democratic Party’s desire to have Michael Cohen testify before the House Committee on Oversight and Reform undermined President Trump’s ability to negotiate a safer America during his summit with Kim Jong Un.

It is likely that North Korean adviser’s informed the dictator that President Trump is in no position to negotiate a nuclear deal, something that would make all of us safer, due to the political infighting going on here in The US and the simultaneous testimony of Michael Cohen publicly discrediting The President, political behavior that would not go unpunished in North Korea, severely unpunished, something they probably can’t even comprehend there, and probably would not even consider.

In the future one would hope that the Democratic Party would refrain from its unwavering desire to gain control of all branches of government by emasculating American global political authority and let our elected leadership work effectively and unhindered to protect the citizens of the country.

Those nukes aren’t pointed at The Democratic Party Headquarters. They are pointed at the people. That’s where most nuclear weapons are pointed. That’s what makes them a deterrent. And yet it is primarily the Democrats that want to take away the people’s guns. I guess now we know why. It kind of makes you wonder whose side they are on? When you think about it, how the repeated actions of The Democratic Party support a potential adversary, it’s not a real stretch to reach that conclusion, if you know what I mean. It’s not right there on the surface, but if you uncover a few layers, there it is right there staring you in the face.

Copyright © William Thien 2019

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When I see how diametrically opposed the two major parties are in values and how the country’s tax dollars are to be spent I must admit I am a bit perplexed as to why our elected are not more combative when it comes to addressing the needs of those who voted for them, party by party for that matter.

In other words, when you see that even some of the simplest tasks can take years for Washington to merely approach and even then nothing gets done, you have to wonder if both parties haven’t secretly met in a secret place and decided which party will take which issue off of the table and call it their own and when the secret meeting is over they’ve secretly agreed with a secret handshake not to truly undermine the other party by totally making them look like buffoons so they can all get re-elected the next time. Sure, there is obstruction. But merely so nothing gets done.

Such issues as simplification of an unfair tax code or making certain there is clean water for the population to drink you would think would be first and foremost but instead they want to confiscate firearms or restrict people from self medicating.

That Congress is an effective body is somewhat of a ruse. Congress appears only to be able take and restrict and it has been in that mode for decades. Take and restrict. Take and restrict. It must be a  chant or a mantra newly elected politicians have to repeat at the secret meeting between both parties where they decide what issues each party is going to take off of the table, when they get to Washington, that is.

Ultimately it is as if both parties have the same goal and that is not to let the individual within the public have control over their own lives. They keep picking at it, regulating it (while deregulating medicine and corporate America), and selling us out.

They just seem too sedate to me to really be in it for what they say they are in it for.  Some fists should be flying, to be sure. There is some secret handshake stuff going on there in Washington. There just has to be.

President Trump on the other hand has been all in as far as I can tell. I don’t agree with everything he says or does, but there is very little glad handing going on there. And I can appreciate that.

Once, just once, as a start, I’d like to see some of them cross the aisle and smack some of the opposing party and smack them good. If an all out brawl broke out I wouldn’t mind it a bit, not one bit.

Because you know what, if after years of obstruction, after years of obfuscation, after years of taking my hard-earned tax dollars and giving it to some woman having sex out-of-wedlock to get her vote, if someone crossed the aisle and decked that sumanobotch who for voted for publicly financed whoring, I’d know that they had their heart in it, especially if they landed a good one. Ooooooooooooo. Aaaaaaaaah! Now them’s fireworks. There’s a politician with heart.

Copyright © William Thien 2018

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Here is a copy of a letter I sent to the guest speaker, an expert on taxes who appeared on talk radio this afternoon and I had to call in to state my position on flat taxes. The speaker, Carolyn Bruckner, favors a progressive tax on wealth and doesn’t support a flat tax. I stated when I was put on the air that a flat tax was the fairest form of tax. Bruckner responded that it wasn’t, at 35 percent a flat tax taxes the poorest much more severely than the wealthy. The problem, in my opinion, is that you never hear the poor complain about a flat tax. The wealthy complain about it all the time because there are no ways to hide income. And most flat tax proponents, Steve Forbes for example, describe scenarios at half of that tax rate, 17 percent for example, a rate that would actually pay down the national debt!

Here is a copy of my letter responding to her one-sided response. You are not allowed to debate the guest, you can only pose a question.

Hi Ms. Bruckner,

My name is William Thien. I called in during your appearance in WP Radio today, 02/05/2019.

I stated I support a flat tax because I think it is the fairest form of tax and because everyone is equally invested in seeing that their tax dollars are properly spent.

Your response was to refer to some obscure studies (no references) that flat taxes aren’t fair because a rate of 35 percent to someone making $10,000 is much more substantial than 35 percent to someone making six figures, or something to that amount, I had the radio turned down and I was driving so I didn’t quite catch your figure.

I get it.

You will recall that I stated that the wealthy probably don’t use as many services as the lower-income brackets and as a result, why should they have to pay more? It is somewhat unfair, to be sure.

My problem though primarily is why does the rate have to be 35 percent, that flat tax rate you quoted? I think that number is arbitrarily high and many in the past who have favored a flat tax such as Steve Forbes (17 percent) and others have done the math and concluded the percentage would be close to half of that, that number at 17 percent also effectively diminishing the national debt rather quickly.

I realize a number as high as 35 percent you quoted shuts down the discussion about a flat tax immediately and the host, a good guy to be sure didn’t quite pick up on what you were doing, but 35 percent is really an outrageous number when you consider that most truly wealthy Americans, were they to actually pay at a flat tax rate of more like 15 to 20 percent with no deductions and/or write-offs, would pay down the national debt in a few years.

I realize it is important to keep the bean counters in beans and the tax theorists such as yourself theorizing, but a flat tax really is the fairest tax as again, everyone is equally invested in seeing that their tax dollars are properly spent. As it is now, the wealthy can hide their income with tax deductions and tax breaks and could care less how the rest of the crowd endures and the poorest pay very few taxes leaving the middle classes strapped with the burden.

A flat tax IS the fairest tax.

Thanks again for taking my call.

Sincerely,

William Thien

https://williamthien.wordpress.com/

CC: Mr. Rob Ferrett, Central Time

Here are Ms. Bruckner’s credentials: https://www.american.edu/kogod/faculty/cbruck.cfm

 

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Lovely discussion today with some acquaintances who claimed they didn’t care about illegal aliens working on a construction project I happen to be associated with indirectly.

One of the construction workers said he didn’t care if some of the employees were illegal aliens, it made no difference to him.

That type of talk of course got him a lecture about illegals not paying taxes like the rest of us and still using services, in a sense costing us twice what it costs to provide government services to someone who in fact does pay taxes. But he didn’t care. The conversation digressed to the socialist redistribution of said tax dollars for dependents and mortgage interest deductions, points of contention with me.

In comparing two employees, one married with four kids and one single with no dependents or property, but both making the exact same income and working the exact same hours throughout the year, that employee with dependents and a mortgage payment will receive a significantly larger tax refund than the single employee with no dependents or property. That same employee will take home more on their pay checks throughout the year because it is likely they will have multiple reasons to have less taken from their pay throughout the year, their dependents. Both employees made the same earnings during the year but the government is taking money from that employee with no dependents or property and giving it to the employee with the dependents and property. Socialism, heck practically communism in a sense, the worst kind of socialism, socialism that’s primary function (f)n is unfairness.

When I explained that scenario to the construction worker who claimed he didn’t care about illegal alien employees working on the project, his response was, “well I guess I should have more kids, then.”

Therein lies the flaw in socialism, a system designed to help humanity in fact stimulates self-interested behavior on the part of the recipient of social benefits.

Instead of saying, “yeah, that’s kind of screwed up that the government is taking tax dollars from the employee with no dependents or property and giving it to the employee with the “write-offs,” who aren’t even related to him, his response was in a sense, “well if I want more from the system, I must have more children so I can strap the childless employee with more of a tax burden,” an obvious display of self-interest.

Socialism actually doesn’t equalize, it stratifies the population, creates social classes with access and burdens the rest.

I guess you can’t blame the construction worker for not having any control over his own self-interest. Why should he care about his fellow man (what socialism claims to be about, caring for your fellow man)?

But therein lies the flaw in socialism. It’s one of those ideas that sounds good on the surface, almost perfect in a sense, but when it is put to use and combined with human nature, it is incredibly flawed, creates substantial instances of unfairness, and perpetuates itself through stimulating divisions in the various social-economic classes it is supposed to unify.

Socialism in a sense is supposed to sound like this: How can we help you get over your rough patch in life? Instead, this is what socialism in America has become: what can I get? Gimme, gimme, gimme.

Copyright © William Thien 2018

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If there is one thing that I gain from hearing about the partial government shutdown over and over again in the news it is that there are 800,000 federal government employees furloughed that are considered “non-essential.”

When I heard that number at first on talk radio yesterday I didn’t comprehend it completely. But then I did some basic math. 800,000 divided by 50 (the number of states) comes out to 16,000 federal employees per state, so-called non-essentials that are on furlough. Now the number begins to have some significance.

Sixteen thousand employees per state seems like a huge number to me, especially if they only make up a small portion of the total number of federal employees per state, a number which we do not know exactly.

The news commentator on the radio was interviewing someone while I drove home yesterday and the guest stated that from an economic standpoint, the shutdown will only have a minor impact on the economy if any. That was good news, but if the employees on furlough only make up a small amount of the total number of federal employees per state, how many total federal employees are there? A quick search reveals that there are as many as 9.8 million federal employees with about 22 percent being full-time, the others part-timers and contractors receiving a federal payment of some type but working for a private company contracted out to do the work required. Twenty-two percent of 9.8 million is 2,156,000 full-time employees, or 43,120 employees per state. Add to that the non-essential employees on furlough and you have a total of 43,120 plus 16,000, equaling 59,120 employees per state.

Wow! Holy you know what! Now, many of those are related to the military which by definition is made up of large numbers due to the nature of the task. And without taking the 800,000 non-essential employees from the total number of federal employees is kind of an accounting trick, but for the sake of demonstration it makes an excellent point illustrating the size of the federal work force.

On the other hand, that to me is a staggering number of people involved in the governance of each state (not what they are all involved in but for the sake of drawing a picture of the tax burden for each state), roughly 60,000 federal employees in each state.

Add to that the state employees and local and municipal employees and it makes you wonder how many people in each state work for the government or governments? The media never really comes up with a solid number on the matter and we are left with only vague indications as to the total number of employees.

But lately the media has reminded us constantly that 800,000 employees are furloughed during the current partial shutdown and I can only conclude that the reason for the shutdown is not the wall any longer, the shutdown is so we can see how truly massive our government has become.

I don’t begrudge anyone for working for the government. Most government jobs are usually good jobs with benefits and the people are usually of a very high caliber. I myself have been in the military and at one point was attached to a federal government agency, and I have also worked at the municipal level for a year. I’ve also taught in public schools (educating is not really governance). But after seeing those numbers, nearly 60,000 people per state at just the federal level, I no longer have any question as to why the government takes so much from my pay and I never see it again.

Though I see a need for the wall, for me the shutdown isn’t about the wall entirely any longer, not since I heard that number, 800,000. For me the shutdown is becoming more and more about my pay check, what’s being taken from it, and what’s left.

Copyright © William Thien 2018

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Though I myself here in this blog have been critical of The FED’s seemingly perpetually low interest rates unnaturally stimulating inflation and pricing the middle class out of its lifestyle and sustenance, I think Trump is right that The FED is raising interest rates too quickly. There is no need to ruin the entire economy simply because they have been discovered in what appears either to be an attempt to undermine an entire sector of the working classes or simply to increase the value of another sector’s capital. Either way, the fact that they have been discovered in such irresponsible management of the country’s finances does not indicate overcompensation as a response. Trump is right that The FED is raising interest rates too quickly. Perhaps The FED needs more oversight.

On the matter of Trump’s apparent economic isolationism, of which I have read and heard about in the media not too infrequently, in a global economy where economies are seemingly and inextricably intertwined, maybe too a certain extent a little isolationism isn’t such a bad thing. Why should our economy take a hit every time that of another country which may not have such a robust economy falters? Now I am not certain that is Trump’s motivation in the “suspected” or “suggested” isolationism (the media is grabbing at whatever they can, whatever they can call), but a little shoring up of the national position might not be a bad thing. So if Trump is in fact somewhat isolationist, that could be a good thing in certain circumstances. In my opinion, though, Trump is merely sticking up for the country’s trade imbalances and defending The US against the unfair and protectionist trading practices of other countries that have become accustomed to America’s seemingly unlimited benevolence, the result of poorly managed trade agreements that have undermined our own industrial and production sectors.

Two issues Trump is correct about in my opinion.

Copyright © William Thien 2018

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There was a point when I decided I couldn’t support Donald Trump for the very reason that he supports the buying and selling of our private internet activity. I also don’t agree with his position on a number of environmental issues.

But after seeing General Jim Mattis’s decision to step down as Secretary of Defense as well as a number of other high-ranking officials, I have decided that many of those stepping down are simply jumping ship. Mattis may not be doing so, but in my opinion, most of the others are.

That being said, one thing to note is that when you work for somebody, the American People, The President of The United States, an employer for that matter, your job is fairly well-defined usually and you are there to do that job, not implement “your” vision for America. Yes, if you disagree with something at your job you can walk out the door, but when it comes to serving the country, that’s an entirely different mater.

Aside from The President’s position on what our internet service providers can do with our private information and his position on environmental issues, I don’t believe Trump is that far off when it comes to what needs to be done to improve the economy of this country and take care of its safety and security.

Military activity is expensive as I have said before in my essay titled Should The United States be the world’s police force? and withdrawing our forces from countries where there seems to be no progress occurring, such as in Syria for example, makes a lot of sense for The United States financially, if not militarily. I think Trump is looking at the cost of maintaining troops in Syria and the region and saying there is little return on investment (ROI).

Trump on the other hand seems to be hell-bent on protecting the country’s southern border from mass invasion from Mexico and Central America and I think he is on to something. We do need a border wall. It is not that Americans don’t like Mexicans or people from central America, rather they are sick of paying for benefits for people who are not citizens of The United States and having their jobs taken by undocumented aliens willing to work for pennies on the dollar under the table and paying no taxes on those incomes to boot. Americans simply can’t afford it any longer. They need jobs and for employers to pay living wages in an economy that has not supported the American worker for decades. Trump knows that and is acting on it even though many in corporate America are countering his every move, offshoring jobs like GM has recently or others. But the left and the media have falsely turned the narrative to one of racism. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Trump may look like the bad guy on such issues as how the military should be managed financially or how the country’s borders should be protected but if you ask me, all of the preceding Presidents have spent too much time trying to look like “the good guy” and have either exacerbated the problem for the citizens of America or increased the country’s financial burden.

T.S. Eliot said, “Most of the evil in this world is done by people with good intentions.” Samuel Johnson said, “Hell is paved with good intentions.”

Unlike the previous presidents of late, Trump is just doing the public’s dirty work and doesn’t care what the media, the left, or naysayers say about him. Clearly, unlike previous Presidents, his first priority isn’t about earning the “good guy” label. And for those of us who have done and do the dirty work of the country, you know how thankless it can be. Imagine being President Trump and the burden he is facing with all the corporate media and organized socialist resistance. Imagine the mud storm!

After seeing all that, I am like alright, okay, I’m going to have to put my deltas aside for now. That is why I am setting aside my differences and supporting President Trump once again. Because the guy has still cut my income taxes and that of corporate America, a miracle of incredible magnitude in modern American politics. That hasn’t happened at the federal level in like “forever.” In a sense, that is and will be priority number one for a long time for all elected officials, cutting our taxes. If I hear that you will have my complete and utter attention. What Trump has accomplished in that regard is a significant thing considering the drive of governments at all levels in The US to tax. It is seemingly insatiable.

Now, Mr. President, on the issues of internet privacy and the environment, we need to talk. You or I might not have a problem getting dirty on behalf of the country but let’s keep the public safe and clean. Thanks to your tax breaks, corporate America will do just fine without having access to everyone’s personal data.

Copyright © William Thien 2018

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Once again here is my annual holiday message:

Now that the holiday season is upon us I want to remind everyone not to forget the less fortunate, those who serve the country and our communities, and also to consider the natural future of our planet and its environment. The following are some organizations that I support regularly or volunteer with that could use your support, too.

You may donate by clicking directly on the links in this text. In no particular order, here they are:

The USO https://secure.uso.org/?sc=WEBDONTRIL  Supporting the morale, welfare, and recreation of troops around the world and helping them stay connected.

Paralyzed Veterans of America http://www.SupportVeterans.org  A great organization dedicated to serving veterans suffering from spinal injuries.

Disabled American Veterans http://www.dav.org  DAV will help you get to the VA for medical visits or complete paperwork associated with VA claims and specializes in working with veterans injured in combat.

Homes for Our Troops  http://hfotusa.org is an organization with an excellent goal, “To build mortgage-free, specially adapted homes nationwide for severely injured Veterans Post-9/11, to enable them to rebuild their lives.”

I have worked as a volunteer on one of these homes doing general things, handing roofing shingles up to the roofers, carrying wood to work locations, that kind of thing. They always need people. You can see if there is a home scheduled to be built in your area and volunteer by visiting their website. http://hfotusa.org

Audubon http://www.audubon.org/  One of the most active organizations in seeing that our natural world is monitored and conserved. The Audubon Society does some incredible things when it comes to helping to restore and conserve natural environments. Take your kids to an Audubon Conservation Center for a guided hike and you will see what I mean.

The International Crane Foundation
 https://www.savingcranes.org/  Eleven of the fifteen crane species face extinction, eleven of the fifteen species!

And don’t forget about your local food pantry. There is one in every town.

Copyright © William Thien 2018

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This Monday morning following the weekend attack in Pittsburgh The CBS Morning Show had a so-called “analyst” on who said that The FBI is restricted from monitoring social media for certain types of speech. Maybe, the implication was, the attack in Pittsburgh could have been stopped were The FBI or some other government body monitoring social media.

The woman , the “analyst,” dressed in a shape revealing, tight-fitting black shirt skirt that probably cost a lot of money who obviously had numerous plastic surgeries to her face and had spent thousands of dollars on her hair recently said that maybe it is time for the government to start monitoring social media, a blanket search warrant on us all, another one following the various iterations of The Patriot Act.

Naturally, the thought came to mind of the quote by Benjamin Franklin, “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.”

Let me elaborate on what Benjamin Franklin said. Franklin essentially said that CBS deserves neither liberty or security. That’s what that means.

CBS didn’t waste any time attempting to hack away at your liberties, no time at all. None. Started it off first thing Monday morning, shoving you back in to submission. Make no mistake, that’s what they are up to with that type of rhetoric.

Let’s stop letting the media determine policy.

Copyright © William Thien 2018

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What an interesting week in the news, mail bombs, stock market machinations, you name it.

The President’s response is that there is no place for “political violence” in the country and that we all need to “unify.”

I like the guy, I have to admit, though it is unlikely that I will vote for him if he runs again for President since he and the rest of the elected classes in that party support selling our internet privacy to anyone and everyone who wants to see what we are doing on the internet, what the children are texting to each other, who we are calling. Doesn’t mean I will vote for a socialist democrat, but there are other parties out there that aren’t in such a hurry to sell you out. Sorry guy, but you lost me there at that betrayal of my privacy.

But getting back to the subject of this observation, why do we all need to unify? Nothing our government does leads us to any form of unity. The tax code divides us in to separate income brackets and wealth classes and rewards or punishes us all completely differently. Particular social groups receive massive aid from the government while others do not. Laws protect “special classes” of people who are then called “protected classes.”

Unity?

Think about it, guy. Try again.

If we are going to unify we need to unite against the government for what it does to us all.

Judging from the way the government treats us all differently, that is of course what the government is afraid of. Unity.

Copyright © William Thien 2018

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I don’t know about you but I’m getting sick of hearing and seeing campaign ad after campaign ad suggest that if you vote for the other guy, you will practically end up dead, destitute, or homeless and out of work.

Your medical insurance will be canceled. Voting for the other guy is akin to getting cancer in some ads with a medical angle.

Mass murderers and thug rapist inmates will be freed from jail if you vote for the other guy in some ads.

You will all lose your jobs and then your houses.

People will practically die in the streets if you vote for the other guy.

Do our politicians have that much control over our fates? Because they should not. The media would have us all believe though that it is so with the amount of ads they are running and making a killing on themselves.

Ugh! Another campaign season. Another season of fear.

Makes you want to vote for the third party candidate. They don’t have any money to run such ads, yet.

Copyright © William Thien 2018

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After the Judge Kavanaugh confirmation hearings, the primary thing that is clear to me about sexual harassment and sexual assault allegations is that such allegations are used against men as a “weapon,” often in an offensive sense, to achieve or acquire something such as social promotion or an employment promotion, perhaps a lawsuit to acquire financial compensation, you name it. Obviously I’m stating the obvious here.

In the case of Judge Kavanaugh, sexual harassment allegations were brought as a means to prevent something, his confirmation to the Supreme Court. Otherwise, why wait so long to make such allegations?

Another thing about sexual harassment allegations is that they are a weapon really only available in the female arsenal. And because the onus is on the accused to defend himself and regain his innocence once the accusations are made, sexual harassment allegations not only have the power to wound the falsely accused, the allegations automatically disarm the accused and make it nearly impossible to defend himself because half of the population, women, want to believe the accusations almost automatically in the kangaroo court that is mass media fueled feminism.

Sexual harassment allegations seem almost to bypass the public court system in that regard.

I should add that men themselves do not generally make sexual harassment allegations because society and the pandering media do not view them in the same manner as allegations brought by women against men. So there is a cultural context to sexual harassment and assault claims when maybe there shouldn’t be.  We are all equal, right?

Yet, I have heard from many men that they have been harassed sexually, particularly in the work place. Does that mean that men are more civil in the work place? Or are female employees just that much more devious and disruptive to the work environment? Which raises the question: Are equal rights laws so open to such abuse as a plethora of false claims that the laws are totally undermining productivity and success in the American work place, crippling American industry in a contemporaneously global industrial environment where such laws are not commonplace elsewhere? Then, perhaps the threshold for what defines sexual harassment and assault is way too low.

Finally, after the media’s focus on the sexual harassment allegations brought against Judge Kavanaugh and the massive harangue from women in every town square about what clearly appear now to be nefarious claims by Kavanaugh’s accuser, you would think all women have been sexually harassed.

That causes me to reach only one conclusion as only one conclusion could be reached about sexual harassment claims. It is clear that the definitions of sexual harassment go too far and that they undermine the natural order between men and women when ultimately such definitions should restore harmony. But we don’t see that today. We see only discord. Just look at the masses of protesters everywhere.

The law, laws, the “system,” so to speak, is supposed to enhance order and harmony but as more and more laws are put in the books about such matters, and the definitions of what such matters involve supposedly evolve, more and more women claim to be harassed and assaulted. Perhaps there will come a time, as it would appear many would have it, when every interaction between the sexes will potentially be classified as sexual harassment or sexual assault and no man or boy will be safe from accusation. Masculinity will be forbidden in that time and only femininity, if you can call it that, will be legal.

The definitions of sexual harassment need to be re-evaluated to include behaviors by both participants in what appears often to be interaction between consenting individuals where one it appears quite plainly is simply using such allegations to get what they want when they could not any other way. Even if it is simply revenge.

Copyright © William Thien 2018

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Word to the “politically wise.”

As the midterm elections approach the media and many in the political power classes would have us all believe that if there is a massive shift from red to blue, right to left during the election, it is because of President Trump.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

What is happening with the voter is that so many laws have been created, so many people have suffered through the last “great recession” financially, and there has been a massive expansion of the “surveillance state” * (see note at conclusion) both state sponsored surveillance and corporate surveillance of the citizen that a large, generational and criminal class has been created by the system lead by a class of do-gooders and holier-than-thous that carry little, real social weight, work little compared to the guy in the trenches, but have been able to position themselves, primarily through clever use of the media, as “the righteous” when in fact they are merely flinging their excrement around like a bunch of primates in a glass cage at the zoo.

Many consensual behaviors have also been regulated for so long and driven into a dark corner by the political classes and the mainstream media that we are witnessing a backlash from the voter. And who can blame them?

So many people have had run-ins with the law in some capacity or another and so many have lost everything for no good reason except greed and excessive taxation pulling the final piece out of the American puzzle that it all came down for so many and now the voter is reacting to it. Ssssslowly. But America is a sleeping giant. Watch out!

The political elite would like to blame somebody for their transgressions against the public on behalf of special interests, certain corporations, religious rightists and certain belief systems, you name it, whomever and whatever contributed the largest sums, and they’ve picked Trump as a convenient scapegoat.

But nothing could be further from the truth. Trump and his administration have probably done more good for the finances of the people of this country than the last five consecutive presidents, maybe more.

The political right, and many on the left, have painted themselves into a corner with the voter.

Luckily we have a democracy and the change in leadership can happen at the ballot box and it doesn’t happen on the town square with the guillotine.

It’s not about Trump and the political elite know it.

If there really is even a shift from right to left in this midterm, from red to blue as so many fear, the political elite created the voter that is about to displace them and they have nobody to blame but themselves.

Note: I changed “police state” to “surveillance state” as I believe that is  a more accurate description of the circumstances and I believe the police in general are not themselves responsible for a “police state” and have acquired a negative image recently, mainly for political expediency and media assertion into the marketplace. In other words, the police have been made a convenient fall guy.

Copyright © William Thien 2018

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Live Now Congressional Subcommittee, Marijuana Laws in America: Racial Justice and the Need for Reform:

Congressional Subcommittee Hearing on Marijuana law reform

 

 

Politicians often say socialized medicine isn’t a good idea because there will be shortages of medicine and care and for the most part I would have to agree. But we have a lot of shortages of medicine right here in America, too, false shortages to drive prices up, but shortages nevertheless. So, what system is better?

MED FDA Shingles Vaccine

Shortages of Shingrix Vaccine making life difficult for Americans who’ve had Chicken Pox and are approaching the age where a Shingles vaccine is advised by The CDC

RepGordonBoote

“To me what is interesting about legalization in Illinois regarding the expungement of criminal records for marijuana possession is that suddenly there will be 800,000 more potential employees that will pass initial employment screening because they don’t have to answer “Yes” to having a criminal record on their employment application. That’s huge in terms of a increasing employability when it comes to just one state in fifty. HUGE!”  William Thien © 2019

Article by JOHN O’CONNOR detailing changes to Illinois law regarding the expungement of Marijuana Convictions following marijuana adult recreational use legalization in 2020

In my opinion there are two or three, perhaps four issues that disqualify Democrats from the Presidency.

  1. The border needs to be secured. It’s a no-brainer. Illegals are arriving in massive throngs and pouring across the southern border. All of the pandering by the Democrats to non-citizens and their citizen kindred simply to get their votes in future elections while disregarding the costs to the tax payer indicate a disregard for the tax load the US citizen must carry, not to mention the lost jobs to illegals working for cash under the table and the corresponding lost income tax revenues which must be assumed by the current US working classes.
  2. The assault on the 2nd Amendment. Most of the mass shootings were perpetrated by people who purchased their firearms legally, even with strict background checks and strict laws governing usage. Enough said aside from the fact that owning firearms is a constitutional amendment and isn’t about what a hunter might need to hunt for a deer.
  3. The desire to create even more protected classes and foist any related tax burdens upon a nation of people already carrying a heavy load in that regard.
  4. A fundamental desire to raise taxes instead of cut programs back or remove them altogether…goes to a belief that government can solve all social and human issues. It cannot.

What qualifies Democrats?

  1. An understanding that the country cannot police the world and expect to keep a balanced budget. Military activity is expensive and it is the source of much of the country’s debt.
  2. A grasp of issues that affect the country’s health such as a need to address proper health care regulation and health insurance regulation to control prices in the same way health care was regulated prior to The Reagan Administration when you could afford to buy health insurance yourself if you had to without a subsidy from your employer if they didn’t offer it, or a subsidy from the government.
  3. A good sense of law addressing adult consensual behaviors. The Republicans totally disqualify themselves by restricting or attempting to restrict certain types of adult activity, including abortion and birth control. Without abortion, a horrible choice to have to make, crime would skyrocket and government would mushroom to pay for all of the children that the mother couldn’t support on her own, something already done massively.
  4. An excellent idea about what needs to be done regarding environmental issues.
  5. Positions on marijuana usage and incarceration for usage.
  6. Position on education.

More to follow…

Copyright © William Thien 2019

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Of all the candidates that appeared during both debates, I’d have to say that the top three candidates in my opinion were John Hickenlooper, John Delaney, and a third place tie between four candidates, and they are in no particular order Beto O’Rourke, Kamala Harris, Pete Buttigieg, and Andrew Yang.

Only Hickenlooper and Delaney seemed to be experienced enough to hold the job, had the correct attitude, and didn’t seem to be out to settle a score or get even with anyone. They seemed to have left the baggage behind.

The candidates tying for third place missed points on either talking to me first in a foreign language, had baggage and indicated they were looking to settle scores for things I or people like me haven’t been involved in, or had some pie in the sky ideas. But they were all pretty convincing on other points and likable.

I think the panel asking questions in the future shouldn’t be media personnel. They are too in tune with the mainstream media, the tool by which much of the country’s condition is maintained when change in many respects is necessary. Instead of asking necessary questions, many of the questions were merely designed to increase ratings or cause instability.

I would vote for Hickenlooper and or then Delaney today were Trump not in the race, and Trump, though a good candidate has some work to do, some things to restore which he undid or reversed such as regulations on clean air and water and the unfettered corporate accumulation and trading of consumer internet activity.

Copyright © William Thien 2019

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