Thursday, September 27, 2012

Mitt Romney: Those People

A cookie to the first person who can point out the mistake in the video.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Double Taxation? Another Romney Myth, Busted.

Mitt Romney said this during his interview on 60 Minutes:

Scott Pelley: Now, you made on your investments, personally, about $20 million last year. And you paid 14 percent in federal taxes. That's the capital gains rate. Is that fair to the guy who makes $50,000 and paid a higher rate than you did?

Mitt Romney: It is a low rate. And one of the reasons why the capital gains tax rate is lower is because capital has already been taxed once at the corporate level, as high as 35 percent.

Pelley: So you think it is fair?

Romney: Yeah, I think it’s the right way to encourage economic growth, to get people to invest, to start businesses, to put people to work.

As a successful businessman, he should know better than echoing a myth that's been busted time and time again:

There is no factual evidence that dividends are double-taxed. To claim they are is a complete falsification indulged in by many who would know better if they examined the facts.

Dividends are taxed only once to stockholders. The income taxes the corporation pays are completely different than those paid by stockholders — they are calculated at different rates and under different rules and regulations.

To say that stockholders pay corporate income taxes is at complete odds with the facts. The corporation is well-established as an entirely separate and distinct legal entity. The stockholders do not manage corporate operations or have title to its assets. They are not management and cannot take possession of a pro rata share of corporate buildings or other assets. Stockholders do not declare dividends or run the corporation’s daily operations—they simply own a piece of paper that entitles them to a share of net assets on dissolution and to dividends if corporate management declares any.

It is true the ups and downs in a corporation’s profitability will affect all parties interested in its operations whether they are employees, lenders, taxing authorities or stockholders, but it is not true they are all double-taxed simply because the corporation pays taxes on its income. So, let us therefore hear the end of the myth of the double taxation of dividends. It just doesn’t hold up under any honest study of the facts.

Source: An Opinion on Dividend’s Taxation.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

President Obama's Weekly Address: Congress Must Act to Create Jobs and Grow the Economy

It's been over a year since the President's American Jobs Act was introduced. The very least Congress can do is put it up for a vote.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Governor Cuomo Announces Initiative to Help Long-Term Unemployed Individuals Find Jobs

Quoting from Governor Cuomo's press release in its entirety:

Albany, NY (September 18, 2012)

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced a new initiative to combat long-term unemployment in New York State.

To help New Yorkers seeking jobs, the state will distribute $6 million in federal grants to companies that hire long-term unemployed individuals, as well as deploy a mobile response team to assist individuals seeking work in high unemployment areas.

"New York State's efforts to help long-term, unemployed individuals find jobs have been recognized across the nation, and this additional $6 million will be a shot in the arm as we continue to put New Yorkers back to work and get our economy back on track," Governor Cuomo said. "With NY Works projects creating new jobs and supporting economic development all across the state, this initiative will help train workers and connect the unemployed with opportunities to launch a successful career."

The $6 million in federal grants will provide wage subsidies to businesses that hire a new employee. The Governor has directed the State Department of Labor and Empire State Development to work with local workforce development agencies to promote the available federal training dollars in every region of the state. The Administration will partner with employers which used these grants in the past to hire long-term unemployed workers as a way to promote the proven record of job creation this type of funding can bring.

The federal grant is the second "On-the-Job Training" grant given to New York State. New York was nationally recognized last year for its work using this type of grant to help unemployed individuals find jobs, and additional funding was granted to New York to expand its back-to-work initiatives.

State Labor Commissioner Peter M. Rivera said, "The Governor's multi-pronged initiative to help New Yorkers who are struggling with long-term unemployment will offer proven resources to help them find work. Getting a job can be a tremendous hurdle – especially if you've been out of work for more than 26 weeks and New York State is here to help."

U.S. Senator Charles Schumer said, "Helping the unemployed find work should be job number one, and these federal dollars will do just that. New York has a long record of finding innovative ways to help the unemployed find work, and we are continuing in that tradition."

U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand said, "Governor Cuomo's plan to leverage these federal dollars is an important step forward towards addressing the long-term unemployment crisis. Congress must come together and take charge of job creation for the short and long-term unemployed as its own."

U.S. Representative Nita Lowey said, "The longer someone has been out of work, the more difficult it becomes to find a job. We must not be content to watch our neighbors suffer long-term unemployment when we have the opportunity to help. I commend Governor Cuomo for this innovative effort to promote hiring and help the long-term unemployed connect with job opportunities."

U.S. Representative José E. Serrano said, "I applaud Governor Cuomo for his innovative responses to the dire problem of people who have been out of work for long periods of time. People in this situation often need a helping hand to get out of the catch-22 that long-term unemployment can become. With these bold plans for action, our state will become a national leader in dealing with this issue and help a great number of people in the process."

U.S. Representative Carolyn McCarthy said, "The rise in the long-term unemployed is a consequence of the recent economic downturn that must be addressed. I'm glad that a significant amount of federal funding will go to help the long-term unemployed find jobs and I'm grateful that Governor Cuomo has been such an effective steward of this money – I'm confident that it will help connect yet more New Yorkers to more jobs in the days ahead."

U.S. Representative Tim Bishop said, "Returning the long-term unemployed to the workforce is a top national priority, and I strongly support federal funding to help employers find the skilled workers they need among the chronically unemployed. I applaud Governor Cuomo for his innovative plan to leverage federal resources to put New York back to work."

Further, the Governor's initiative will include a Mobile Reemployment Response Team to target areas that have the highest rate of long-term unemployment in New York. The team will set up one and two day operations at libraries, schools and community centers. Unemployment insurance recipients who have received 27 or more weeks of benefits to date will be invited, although all New Yorkers will be welcome. Services will be tailored to the long-term job seeker and include resume writing and interviewing, skills matching, tailored job leads and training opportunity counseling, amongst other services. Prior to arriving, the specialized team will use DOL's local business service representatives to canvass local employers for job opportunities that meet the terms of the federal grant.

The Mobile Reemployment Response Team is an enhanced version of the state's Rapid Response team. Rapid Response has a proven record of helping laid-off workers find jobs. Since January 2011, Rapid Response teams have met with thousands of newly laid-off New Yorkers and helped connect 9,800 individuals to jobs.

Over the next month, the Mobile Reemployment Response Team will travel to the following upstate locations where its directive is to meet with at least 25% of the local population afflicted with long-term unemployment. Multiple New York City and Long Island locations will be announced by early October. Sessions will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the following locations:

Monday, October 1 – St. Lawrence County
Clarkson University
8 Clarkson Avenue, Potsdam NY

Wednesday, October 3 – Montgomery County
Minden Town Hall
134 Highway 80, Fort Plain, NY

Thursday, October 4 – Monroe County
Monroe Community College, Flynn Campus Center
1000 East Henrietta Road, Rochester, NY

Tuesday, October 9 – Orleans County
Genesee Community College, Medina Campus
11470 Maple Ridge Road, Genesee, NY

Friday, October 12 – Erie County
Buffalo & Erie County Public Library
1 Lafayette Square, Buffalo, NY

Monday, October 15 – Fulton County
Johnstown Public Library
38 South Market Street, Johnstown, NY

Thursday, October 18 – Albany County
Zaloga Post
4 Everett Road Ext., Albany, NY

Friday, October 19 – Westchester County
New Rochelle Public Library
1 Library Plaza, New Rochelle, NY

New Yorkers interested in learning more about these initiatives can visit or call (888) 4-NYSDOL (888-469-7365)

Monday, September 17, 2012


Friday, September 14, 2012

The iPhone 5 and the 99ers

From Paul Krugman in today's NY Times - The iPhone Stimulus

"We don’t have high unemployment because Americans don’t want to work, and we don’t have high unemployment because workers lack the right skills. Instead, willing and able workers can’t find jobs because employers can’t sell enough to justify hiring them. And the solution is to find some way to increase overall spending so that the nation can get back to work."

It's why we want the American Jobs Act. It's why we want infrastructure bills. It's why we want businesses to use the trillions of dollars of cash they're hoarding. We want - we need - to get back to work.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Up with Chris Hayes: President Obama and the House of obstructionism

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Chris' conclusion is vitally important:

"What President Obama did not say in Charlotte was that the best way to stop Republicans from holding (the nation) hostage is to strip them of the power to do so in November."

Saturday, September 8, 2012

As Seen On Twitter

Mark your calendars.

This, at least, is where one of the claims for 12 million jobs comes from:

"The current Moody's Analytics baseline forecast is for payroll employment to increase by 12 million jobs from the start of 2013 to the end of 2016 (134 million to 146).

"However, the economic assumptions embedded in our forecast include only an extension of Bush-era tax rates for those under 250K, which is more closely aligned with the Obama administration's position. We also assume a bipartisan deal to scale back sequestration and achieve a long-run fiscally sustainable path, with Democrats accepting reforms to Social Security and Medicare in exchange for the increase in top tax rates.

"In effect, therefore, Romney is essentially promising no more jobs than we currently expect to gain under proposals similar to those advanced by the Obama administration. There's not enough in Romney's plan to estimate how many jobs it would create. If he's saying the net change will be 12 million jobs, that's exactly what we're estimating without Romney's plan."

Monday, September 3, 2012

The Raw Story: Remember the 99ers? Long-term unemployed workers’ invisible struggle

Kay Steiger at The Raw Story interviewed a number of 99ers (including me) for a series of stories on unemployment. Excerpts follow:

(Pam) Sexton wrote she feels like she interviewed at nearly every company in the Kansas City area, where she's from, before renting out her house and moving to Minnesota in search of work.

"We do not want handouts. We want to feel valued and that we are contributing. We are too young to quit the working world," she wrote.

"Employer discrimination against the unemployed — and especially the long-term unemployed — has been well documented. A 60 Minutes story aired last month highlighted the 'silent no' of job listings that stipulate applicants must be currently employed."

"'While we were in between the resumes and the interviews, we were trying to tell people please don't forget about us,' he said. 'It’s tough to be in the position to be an (unemployed and actively-looking) advocate.'

He also saw how the message of the 99 percent, pushed by the Occupy Wall Street movement, quickly overpowered the small voices of the 99ers. 'That was a good conversation to have, but we became yesterday's news,' he said."

Labor Day, 2012

Harold Meyerson, writing in today's Washington Post:

"The primary plight of U.S. workers isn’t their lack of skills. It’s their lack of power. With the collapse of unions, which represented a third of the private-sector workforce in the mid-20th century but just 7 percent today, workers simply have no capacity to bargain for their share of the revenue they produce.

"This is not to say that there is no skills gap or that U.S. schools don’t need improvement. But the decline of unions has both weakened workers’ bargaining power and diminished the kind of apprenticeship programs that the building trades unions have long (and ably) provided. Under increasing right-wing pressure to justify their very existence, however, some unions in other sectors are embarking on skills training or professional development programs."

Saturday, September 1, 2012

We Have A Choice

Melissa Harris-Perry: Nothing Is Riskier Than Being Poor In America

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