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wi62

Morning all, since Orl mentioned her favorite “Borg” :). Perhaps he can drop off a few boxes to his employees

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NYCVG

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from today in New York Daily News.

Isn’t this just Perfect?

polarbear4

jcitybone

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/we-need-to-focus-on-earth-bernie-sanders-responds-to-elon-musk-s-space-travel-plans-with-call-for-progressive-taxes-b1820304.html

Bernie Sanders has responded to Elon Musk’s defense of the Tesla founder’s enormous wealth amid growing discussions in Congress about income inequality.

Mr Musk responded to a column criticising the senator’s previous remarks about his wealth, which is estimated to be roughly $167 billion.

“We are in a moment in American history where two guys” – Musk and Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos – “own more wealth than the bottom 40 per cent of people in this country,” Mr Sanders said.

“That level of greed and inequality is not only immoral,” he added. “It is unsustainable.”

Mr Musk responded by saying that he is “accumulating resources to help make life multiplanetary [and] extend the light of consciousness to the stars.”

Mr Sanders then circled back on the Space X founder on Sunday: “Space travel is an exciting idea, but right now we need to focus on Earth and create a progressive tax system so that children don’t go hungry, people are not homeless and all Americans have healthcare. The level of inequality in America is obscene and a threat to our democracy.”

Aint Supposed to Die A Natural Death
Aint Supposed to Die A Natural Death

I love the hell out of Bernie. Deep deep respect.

polarbear4

🤜🤛

magsview

magsview

jcitybone

jcitybone

Slow day here

For the first full day of Spring. One of my favorite musicals of the last decade. I saw it once on side stage since they offered tickets there. It’s the Tony’s so they couldn’t sing the full title of the last song: Totally Fucked. No problem though with “The Bitch of Living”

A few years after the original cast with Jonathan Groff and Lea Michele, a deaf repertory company did it on Broadway. It was really good with singing and signing simultaneously.

jcitybone

Here’s a clip of the Deaf West version

polarbear4

awesome and very cool–did not know this existed.

polarbear4

wow!

NYCVG

Image

Today in NYC. Evelyn and Andrew yang.

The crowd size remind you of anybody?

NYCVG

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Aint Supposed to Die A Natural Death
Aint Supposed to Die A Natural Death

Wow. I was listening to an episode of the Nomiki Konst show today with Francesca Fiorentini and Jamie Peck and they had very negative comments about Andrew as a “libertarian”. But looks like he’s convincing the people.

jcitybone

I think there are some good things about Yang and some not so good things. If he wins, it would certainly shake up the established political order in NYC.

NYCVG

That’s for sure.

No other candidate has been out in public in the way that Yang has.

The rest of them are hanging back and sniping at one another or drowning NYC residents in snail mail and ridiculous lying TV ads.

A good example of this is Shaun Donovan with whom my neighbors and I engaged in a 61/2 year court battle to preserve our housing. The Judge found for us and in her decision cited the fraud Shaun, (who worked for Michael Bloomberg) failed to pull off.

Not to mention that Shaun has Obama in his ads where, as HUD Secretary for Obama, Shaun attempted to destroy middle income housing countrywide.

Shaun never mentions his years as Bloomberg’s bad guy because if that was widely remembered he wouldn’t get many votes.

wi62

It will peak my interest on what he does if elected. To me he falls in between Byedone and Bernie

NYCVG

Yang has more than a few troubling spots in his policies.

For now, I can see them as trying to appeal to the largest possible amount of constituencies, without alienating others.

In other words, politics as usual.

wi62

The DNC hates it when a candidate draws a large crowd

polarbear4

polarbear4
polarbear4

jcitybone

Well not quite trailer park.

Prices start at $595,000 for a base model and go up to $950,000.

Some stuff (environmental impact) is actually good about these

polarbear4
polarbear4

that’s good. sure looks like living in the company modules to me, tho.

polarbear4
polarbear4

nite 💜

NYCVG

Tomorrow is the Israeli Elections. Number 4 as Bibi refuses to let go. Even as he
is in court on corruption and fraud charges.

The following is from the Jerusalem News

“The Man who Forgot what it is to be Israeli.

Opinion: The fact that the election has led right-wing politicians to join the left in calls to oust Netanyahu shows that the nation wants a government rooted in democratic values at heart of this nation and end to divisiveness and corruption

Israel demands change. It isn’t only wishful thinking: polls again and again have shown an absolute and clear-cut majority for those calling for the ousting of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Even the new and unprecedented political map created ahead of the election calls out for change in one way or another.

Ever since I can remember – as a young man, as a soldier voting for the first time and as a father taking his daughter to the polling station – there has always been a clear divide between Israel’s right and left wings.
But suddenly in this election and in a very admirable way, leaders and public figures from the right are rising up against Netanyahu and saying: “Enough is enough. Your time is up.”

New Hope’s Gideon Saar, Yifat Shasha-Biton and Ze’ev Elkin, Yisrael Beytenu’s Avigdor Liberman and Eli Avidar and in some ways even Yamina’s Naftali Bennet – all dyed in the wool right-wingers – understand that the severe dangers of Netanyahu remaining in power justify new political alliances.

Lapid’s Yesh Atid gains momentum but Likud still ahead, new survey shows

All of them unequivocally believe that something has gone wrong with Netanyahu when it comes to balancing political and personal interests. They believe that we as a society must wrest the ship of state out of the hands of a Man who has Forgotten what it means to be Israeli.

It seems that despite all of Netanyahu’s efforts, Israel’s core values – those inherited to us through Jewish traditions that became the heart of our Declaration of Independence – still stand strong.
These core principles – democracy, mutual responsibility, respecting the rule of law, honesty and personal example – were forged in the furnaces of Israel’s many wars and also very much by its culture.

Netanyahu has challenged these beliefs from the first moment he took office, but it seems that over the past year he has viewed nothing as sacred.

A man who is charged with bribery, fraud and breach of trust who allows himself to endlessly attack and discredit the justice system and the police has Forgotten what it is to be Israeli.

A man who secures himself hundreds of thousands of shekels in tax breaks while hundreds of thousands of families battle every day to stay afloat has Forgotten what it is to be Israeli.

A man who in the middle of an economic crisis prevents the passage of a state budget simply to allow himself to remain in power despite an agreement signed with his coalition panthers has Forgotten what it is to be Israeli.

A man who allows a sector of the public to flagrantly flaunt coronavirus restrictions while everyone else must abide by them has Forgotten what it is to be Israeli.

A man who says brushes off more than 6,000 coronavirus deaths as “nonsense” has Forgotten what it is to be Israeli.

es to take away his opponents’ right to protest, branding them as “disease spreaders” and “anarchists” has Forgotten what it is to be Israeli.

There is a direct line between the weekly protests outside Netanyahu’s official residence in Jerusalem and the brave stance of right-wing politicians to come out against him.
Both are impressive and emotional reactions by Israelis to a prime minister’s yet unsuccessful attempt to divide and corrupt our society.

We can only hope that after the election we will see an Israeli coalition without Netanyahu, one that will connect Israel’s parties and be rooted in the values in the heart of this great nation.

Voting on Tuesday is the only option for those who do Remember what it is to be Israeli.”

NYCVG

deleted

jcitybone

Again the Senate filibuster rears its ugly head

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2021/03/22/progressives-demand-permanent-repeal-self-defeating-paygo-law-automatic-medicare

The leadership of the Congressional Progressive Caucus is calling for permanent repeal of a notorious 2010 law that is threatening to inflict deep, automatic cuts to Medicare and other safety net programs following passage of the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan earlier this month.

On Friday, the House of Representatives—with the support of just 29 Republicans—approved legislation that would exempt the coronavirus relief package from a law known as statutory Paygo, which requires deficit spending to be offset by cuts to government programs. The Statutory Pay-As-You-Go Act was enacted in 2010 with the support of the then-Democratic Congress and former President Barack Obama.

While Paygo rules were waived in coronavirus relief bills approved during the Trump presidency, congressional Democrats’ use of the arcane budget reconciliation process to pass the American Rescue Plan over unified Republican obstruction prevented inclusion of a waiver this time around, setting the stage for tens of billions of dollars in cuts to Medicare, farm subsidies, and other programs if the Senate fails to act.

“We’re pleased that the House voted today to waive statutory Paygo for the American Rescue Plan Act to prevent damaging, self-defeating, and wholly unnecessary cuts to Medicare and other programs,” Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, said in a statement. “We urge the Senate to follow the House’s lead and act swiftly to waive statutory Paygo.”

But Jayapal stressed that the House bill—which also pushes off a separate 2% cut to Medicare set for April 1—is just a temporary solution to a problem that will continue cropping up without complete repeal of the 2010 law.

“It’s long past time for Congress to end statutory Paygo permanently,” said Jayapal. “The austerity politics of the last several decades have been an unmitigated failure—hollowing out programs that families rely on and leaving millions unable to afford the basics.”

“Congress should never have to choose between protecting programs like Medicare and lifting families out of poverty or providing urgently needed assistance to working people facing unprecedented economic hardship,” the Washington Democrat continued. “At the Progressive Caucus, we will keep fighting to end statutory Paygo for good so that Congress can focus on what really matters: empowering and investing in working people across this nation.”

To pass the House legislation, the Senate Democratic caucus will need to win the support of at least 10 Republicans as long as the 60-vote legislative filibuster remains intact. But judging by overwhelming opposition to the Paygo waiver bill among House Republicans—127 members of the GOP caucus voted no—Senate Democrats could have difficulty obtaining the necessary votes.

A spokesperson for Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), chair of the Senate Budget Committee, told NBC News last month that the Vermont senator will work to prevent the estimated $36 billion in Medicare cuts from taking effect. A fix must be passed by the end of the year.

polarbear4

TY! i forgot to credit tpw on twitter.

jcitybone

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2021/03/22/tax-evasion-richest-1-us-households-dont-report-21-their-income-analysis-finds

A new analysis by IRS researchers and academics published Monday morning estimates that the richest 1% of U.S. households don’t report around 21% of their income, often using complex tax avoidance strategies that allow them to outmaneuver the federal government’s increasingly rare audits of the wealthy.

Led by two IRS researchers as well as Daniel Reck of the London School of Economics and Emmanuel Saez of the University of California, Berkeley, the new paper (pdf) finds that 6 percentage points of the richest households’ unreported income “correspond to undetected sophisticated evasion” such as offshoring, pass-through businesses, and other avoidance tactics.

“From a policy perspective, our results highlight that there is substantial evasion at the top which requires administrative resources to detect and deter,” the authors write. “We estimate that 36% of federal income taxes unpaid are owed by the top 1% and that collecting all unpaid federal income tax from this group would increase federal revenues by about $175 billion annually.”

“There has been much discussion in the United States about the fact that the audit rate at the top of the income distribution has declined,” the paper continues. “Our results suggest that such low audit rates are not optimal.”

jcitybone

jcitybone

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2021-03-22/biden-determined-to-tax-rich-after-windfalls-from-covid-crisis?srnd=premium

President Joe Biden’s economic team at the White House is determined to make good on his campaign pledge to raise taxes on the rich, emboldened by mounting data showing how well America’s wealthy did financially during the pandemic.

With Republican and business-lobby opposition to the administration’s tax plans stiffening, Democrats need to decide how ambitious to be in trying to revamp the tax code in what’s almost-certain to be a go-it-alone bill. Interviews with senior officials show there’s rising confidence at the White House that evidence of widening inequality will translate into broad popular support for a tax-the-wealthy strategy.

Biden himself has become convinced of the need, saying last week that those earning over $400,000 can expect to pay more in tax.

“2020 really did show him that there were so many of the fragilities across society” that need addressing, Heather Boushey, a member of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, said in an interview. Funding spending priorities given a shortfall in revenues from the 2017 Republican tax cuts “has really demanded the president sit down and think about both the enormous needs, and these questions we’re talking about as to how we tax,” she said.

Behind the scenes, aides have been working on a proposal to pay for some of the longer-term Biden agenda. Boosting income and capital-gains tax rates on top earners, along with levies on companies and an expansion of the estate tax, would help fund priorities such as infrastructure, climate change, and assistance for child care and home health care.

polarbear4

Go after the top and raise their rates.

Give everyone below X a tax holiday and forgiveness.

jcitybone

I guess flat is better than an increase

https://thehill.com/policy/defense/544126-battle-heats-up-over-pentagon-spending-plans

Jockeying over defense funding is heating up amid expectations President Biden will request an essentially flat Pentagon budget for next year.

This past week, a group of progressive Democrats sent Biden a letter calling for him to “significantly” slash defense spending.

The letter sparked fierce backlash from Republicans, who view defense cuts as a red line and would like to see the budget increase.

The back-and-forth points to a difficult balancing act the administration and Democrats will face when the budget works its way through a narrowly divided Congress.

Defense budget watchers have for months been anticipating a request from the Biden administration that’s little changed from current spending levels, particularly amid other budget pressures such as the trillions of dollars spent on the COVID-19 crisis.

polarbear4

whether it shifts everything remains to be seen. as far as being the best bill in ages, well, we are in the middle of a pandemic that is wreaking destruction on so many lives that, imho, it still comes up heartbreakingly short.

magsview

At least two people doubt very much the final Pentagon budget will be “flat”.