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"Here’s your check, go away.’


Patricia Roberts, GM retiree, age 63

U.S. Automakers Cut Retirees Loose
By Keith Naughton on June 27, 2012

GM is offering buyouts to 42,000 pensioners, or about 36 percent of its salaried retirees, who left from Oct. 1, 1997, to Dec. 1, 2011. Those who refuse the lump-sum buyouts will find their pension plan shifted to a unit of Prudential Financial (PRU) along with those of other retired U.S. salaried workers. GM will spend $3.5 billion to $4.5 billion to create a group annuity at Prudential and to offer the buyouts. The moves will excise its 118,000 salaried retirees from its books, though the company will continue to cover the pensions of about 400,000 hourly retirees. GM says the lump-sum payments and annuity will together cut $26 billion from its pension load.

“The market is willing to give a very positive reaction to pension-risk reduction,” says Mick Moloney, a partner in the insurance practice of consultant Oliver Wyman, which advised GM on its plan. “As soon as the press release came out, the share price went up,” he says. Some retirees, though, feel betrayed. “GM is simply abdicating its promise to salaried retirees for a lifetime pension to balance the books by unloading the obligation,” Jim Shepherd, president of the GM Retirees Association, said in a June 21 letter to a GM executive. “They’re throwing everybody under the bus,” says Vern Henderson, 79, a 1987 GM retiree not offered the buyout. “They’re targeting people who are the biggest liability to General Motors because they’ll live longer.” (GM says it will still offer retirees life-insurance benefits, discounts on cars, and regular updates on its business plans.)


Please feed your provisional ballot here (for the folks without "proper" ID.)

Colorado fire statistics through the decades ( CO is becoming CA)


These charts are interesting when you look at 1990's & beyond.

From the 90's on, rampant building (over-building?) in sensitive foothill & mountain areas has happened in both states.

Everyone wants to live in a pretty area, but a housing boom integrates housing into areas that perhaps should not be built on.

When fires break out, superhuman efforts to save homes becomes the first priority.

The ecosystem takes a huge hit too, because 30-40 years ago, when fires broke out, the woodland critters fled to the foothills for safety, but they can no longer do that because the people are there now.

No one has determined the cause of this fire yet, but regardless of the cause, the fire is in an area that 30-40 years ago would have probably been uninhabited or at the very least, sparsely populated.


and this from The Denver Post

Editorial: Tough questions as Colorado homes burn
As more and more homes are built in fire-prone areas, Colorado must consider the implications.
Posted: 06/27/2012 05:41:48 PM MDT
Updated: 06/28/2012 08:55:01 AM MDT

By The Denver Post

Like many of you, we watched in horror Tuesday night as cameras captured the stunning images of the firestorm swallowing homes in the foothills near Colorado Springs. Amid the gruesome backdrop, there was thankfully no loss of life. But there was significant loss of property. And while it is still too soon to tally the damage, the Waldo Canyon fire has added to what is already the most devastating fire season in Colorado history. Given the increase in building in the so-called wildland-urban interface, or WUI, in recent years and the expected boom in coming decades, it's imperative that we use this moment to ask whether we have done enough to confront the difficulties of building homes in or adjacent to forests that are loaded with fuel.

We do not mean that as criticism of any of the victims of this year's fires. But this fire season serves as a wake-up call to an increasingly troubling issue confronting Colorado. The total of at least 450 homes destroyed by wildfires since 2010 exceeds the 387 homes lost between 1976 and 2006, according to data from the Colorado State Forest Service. A U.S. Forest Service analysis found that 40 percent of homes built in the U.S. between 1990 and 2000 were in the WUI. In Colorado, the figure in that time was 50 percent.

A CSU analysis expects a 300 percent increase in WUI acreage in the next couple decades — from 715,500 acres in 2007 to 2.16 million acres in 2030. At the same time, hundreds of millions of dollars have been cut from the federal firefighting budget.


Note to media... It's a LAW (upheld by SCOTUS) not a BILL

All morning long the spokesmodels on MSNBC have repeatedly called it a bill, and are oh-so "concerned" about what can be done to overturn it..

Even if the mad-hatters in the House do "repeal" it on July 11, it's not likely that the Senate would concur..and even if they did, would Obama sign it?

Is there a 2/3 majority to override a presidential veto?

Worst-Week-Evaaaah for the crybaby Goopers

They had their shriveled, blackened, little hearts all set for a "3 Strikes Yer Out"-A-Pallooza to be delivered to Obama..

But then:

1) Arizona's papers-please rulings got pretty much gutted, and what's left will be lawsuit-magnets which will cost Arizona a lot of money they probably cannot afford, and may eventually get tossed out when SCOTUS gets another go at it.

2) The Holder Inquisition finally woke the media up enough to start to relay some facts that contradict a LOT of what Crybaby Issa has been saying..the whole debacle has made the lot of them look even more foolish than usual.

3) and the Coup de grâce was the upholding of Obama's health care law

Their supposed wonderful week of home runs delivered from God on a silver platter, turned into a nightmare for them.

They will squeeze more money from their teabag brigade, but those folks were already on the bus, and the bazillionaires will still give what they always planned to.

What happened this week will probably just cause people to finally start looking at the details, and it may have shamed the media into reporting on what it IS, instead of what some yahoo in a tri-corner hat SAYS it is...or what Sarah Palin says it is.

It has condensed the dem "message" into a pretty concise package.

Dems are FOR:

trying to fix health care (it will take time..this is only the start)
trying to fix immigration
trying to fix the economy
trying to enhance fairness for all

Facts tell us that republicans are AGAINST all of the above, so if people want these issues addressed, they just need to start throwing republicans OUT OF OFFICE, so that a sure majority of dems exists in congress so these things can actually be done.

It can be said that dems did not "succeed", but their success or failure was at whim of the republicans who were more than willing to sabotage anything and everything proposed, and they were happy about it.

So, either deliver the smack-down they deserve, or forever hold your tongue.

You cannot be FOR fixing these problems, and still "like the idea" of a mixed party control of congress.

That produces gridlock and anxiety and gets NOTHING done .

This just in:.. Kaiser emailed me

Moving forward with your health in mind

About the Supreme Court Ruling on the Affordable Care Act

The Supreme Court decision on the federal health care reform law has settled much of the legal uncertainty over how the law will be carried out.

As a Kaiser Permanente member, you need not be concerned about any disruption to your coverage and care resulting from the court's decision.


We are also reviewing the court's decision to determine how it may affect the law's expansion of Medicaid coverage to millions of Americans, which is planned to begin in 2014.


They left a reply box..so I DID:

I am THRILLED to see that the bastards in the republican party did not manage to sink this wonderful plan we have needed for DECADES.

Perhaps in my lifetime, I will eventually be able to CHOOSE my medical facility and my doctors and not be compelled to choose between Kaiser or nothing.

Thanks for your "concern"..

The Lost Generation


Powerful Slideshow from Reuters.


(photo would not copy since it's a slideshow)

It's got young people all over the world, and their "menial" jobs they all do to just get by..

Photo 13 / 17

Steffen Andrews, a 24 year-old waiter, serves a customer at Sunny Blue restaurant in Santa Monica, California, April 24, 2012. Andrews studied for four and a half years at Cabrillo College where he received a degree in communications. He came to Los Angeles to work in the film industry but is now unsure what career he wants to pursue.
REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson

I'd like to "kill" a word

The word is "access".

What a phony-baloney wiggle-word.

ACCESS is NOT the problem.

Most insurance companies will issue policies for most people who ask for a quote.

Every medical facility I have ever seen, has ample parking, driveways, customer service people. There are doctors & nurses too.

Hospitals are "accessible" also.

Unless you are comatose, and have no helpers, MOST people can "access" a care facility/hospital/doctor.

What most CANNOT do though, is figure out a way to PAY FOR IT.

I wish our legislators would stop pretending that "access" is the issue here.

It"s the MONEY..and the lack of it for most people

Dateline: July 11, 2012--House of Representatives

(for the uninformed, that's the date they will repeal Obamacare)

House Republicans schedule vote to repeal health care law
By Lisa Mascaro / Tribune Washington Bureau
Thursday, June 28, 2012 - Updated 40 minutes ago
WASHINGTON — House Republican leaders today set a vote in two weeks to repeal the nation’s health care law — a largely symbolic act that is not be expected to go anywhere in the Democratic-led Senate.

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., said the vote will be July 11.

“The House will once again vote to repeal ObamaCare,” the leader said in a tweet.

House Republicans already voted to get rid of the law in one of their first acts in taking the majority in 2011. They had promised another vote after the Supreme Court decision.


Perfect visual for Tea Party "feelings" today

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