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NowISeetheLight

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Gender: Do not display
Hometown: California
Home country: USA
Current location: California
Member since: Sun Aug 22, 2021, 10:54 PM
Number of posts: 404

Journal Archives

Oath Keeper Leader Jan 6 Trial

I've been reading about the trial of the Oath Keepers leader. What POS (imo). This AP article describes his delusions of grandeur, paranoia, depravity and idiocy

Shot out his eye with a gun, made his Mormon wife work as a stripper in Vegas, yeah real upstanding "Conservative". I noticed the article said he has migrant relatives. I wonder how much of this is self hatred for his migrant background. Like he's trying to prove himself somehow

https://apnews.com/article/oath-keepers-founder-jan-6-trial-4372b311695c401255c6881111ff4f41

Posted by NowISeetheLight | Sun Oct 2, 2022, 12:22 PM (4 replies)

Student Loan Relief... An Alternative View & Idea

Apologies for the long post. I'm thinking a lot today.

It seems most polling shows there isn't huge support for student loan debt relief. I think the last poll I saw was close to 50/50.. I'm torn about it. I borrowed too much for school ($52k) and years later ended up with six figure loans ($136k). I took a while to finish school so years of deferments, then forbearances. I made all my payments on time, but had them discharged last year when I became 100% disabled with the VA and started on SSDI.

I took advantage of IBR when I had loans (income based repayment). My payment was around $370 a month instead of the $920 it would've been. It was based on it being 15% of my discretionary income. This is the difference between your AGI and 150% of the poverty level.

Sure even $370 was a lot of money, but years I made lower money I paid less, or almost nothing. There were things you could do to lower your AGI too. Needless to say I was making high 401K contributions those years.

What killed me was the interest rate. I was paying 8.75% and there was no way to refinance. Why not? So even when I made monthly IBR payments, the balance still climbed. I wasn't even covering the interest so I would never have paid them off. But after 20 years with IBR the balance would've been cancelled. Of course then I'd have a giant tax bill because that would've been considered income.

I knew a lot of people who worked their way thru school. I only worked about 15 hours a week. That was my fault. I was lured into the loan trap, easy money, a big check, and no education about how it would affect me after i got out of school. My parents were upper middle class, but they didn't cover my college. But a lot of parents do save to help their kids. They sacrificed vacations and luxuries for education.

I'm torn because this seems grossly unfair. Some people worked and made their payments and struggled. People with low income got Pell grants and work study to help pay for college. I got neither due to my parents income so I had to borrow. Yet at the same time I got my loans discharged. A 100% VA rating will get that for you. Part if me says yes because I sacrificed and ended up damaged for life. I struggled for a decade (poor, homeless a while, sleeping on couches or in my car), then another six years, before finally finding my footing. Sure I made a lot of money in the end, but how much could I have made were it not for my illness?

I like the idea of them helping those who were scammed by these for profit schools. I'm OK with that. I think for everyone else the real answer is IBR with 10% of discretionary pay, and a discharge after 20 years with no tax penalty. The big thing though is I'd also like to see a restriction on interest rates. They would be recalculated yearly so your IBR payment would cover all interest and that would be 75% of the payment. The remaining IBR payment would be principal. That way youd see SOME DROP in your balance. Making payments znd seeing it climb, that's ridiculous. Finally, mandatory financial education for those who take out a student loan on the reality and obligation. Not related to loans but I'd also like to see them be included in a bankruptcy if filed. I filed about 20 years ago and honestly that would've ended it for me.

Posted by NowISeetheLight | Thu Sep 29, 2022, 03:09 PM (22 replies)

Eye Opening Conversion

Becoming a Democrat over the last few years has been a real eye opener for me. Not so much in politics... but in the politicians in each party. Back when I was a "Reagan Republican" I didn't care much for the Democrat policies... but I always thought they were good people... just misguided. I didn't care for President Carter, but I never once thought he was a bad person.

It's different now. I can honestly say there are BAD PEOPLE in Republican politics. When I look what Trump has brought about, and the damage he's caused to America, and those who follow him. I have such disdain for Trump and others like MT Green, Goetz, Boebert, I mean they're just mean, spiteful, hateful, they're horrible as people.

I can disagree with someone on policy. I'm still a fairly "fiscal conservative" type. But the people who don't think like me about finance aren't bad people. But these Republicans today and people like McCarthy, Graham. DeSantis. They have no moral compass as human beings . They're just evil.
Posted by NowISeetheLight | Wed Sep 28, 2022, 02:51 PM (30 replies)

Can You Imagine If...

I just read an article on Politico about California’s homeless problem. Since moving here two years ago I’ve really become aware of it. I see them everywhere in Palm Springs and the surrounding cities. It’s very sad.

https://www.politico.com/news/2022/09/21/california-authorities-uproot-homeless-people-00057868

Anyway, the article said that due to our mild climate HALF the nations homeless are here. Can you imagine what would happen if Gov Newsome used the DeSantis strategy? After all FL and TX both shipped migrants to blue states saying other states should “share the problem and expense”. He even sent some to the VPs house in DC! Can you just imagine what would happen if bus loads of homeless, each with a new tent, showed up in red states? After all, why should CA have to carry the nations homeless problem? (Sarcasm).

I would never advocate using human beings as a publicity stunt. But the thought of bus loads of homeless setting up a tent city next to the Florida Governors Mansion…. Well I’d pay good money to see that.
Posted by NowISeetheLight | Tue Sep 27, 2022, 10:10 AM (2 replies)

Healthcare Disaster in Atlanta

Before I had to quit working (health issues) I worked in hospital revenue cycle. I ran a division in rev cycle for a multi-hospital health system. It was a good job, good money, and exposed me to everything that is wrong with the US healthcare system. Despite what many think hospitals are not money-making ventures for the most part. Most years we were lucky to see 1-2% profit margin. Charity care was off the charts. But it was the vendors, pharmaceutical companies, etc, that were making all the money.

I still receive Becker's Hospital CFO Report in my daily email. Today I saw a story about Wellstar (a hospital system) closing a big hospital in Atlanta. That will leave only one hospital (Grady) to help the city as a Level One Trauma Center. I don't blame Wellstar though. Read the article, how they actually budgeted money to stay open despite sustained operating losses ($107m in the last 12 months). They spent over $350m in capital improvements and operating losses since 2016. They just couldn't make it. This is a healthcare disaster waiting to happen.

https://www.beckershospitalreview.com/finance/wellstar-to-close-2nd-hospital-in-6-months.html?origin=BHRE&utm_source=BHRE&utm_medium=email&utm_content=newsletter&oly_enc_id=8608A8413078J6M

Part of the problem is Georgia never expanded Medicaid. All those non-paying patients who flocked to the ER for basic care never generated revenue for the hospital. If Georgia had expanded Medicaid these people could have doctors and the hospitals could've had revenue to stay open. Hospitals don't run for "free". They cost money.

This just shows why universal healthcare is necessary. Sure they can say we'd have waiting lists like Canada for things like non-essential care. But you know what? In an emergency you will get care and you won't be bankrupted by it. Plus if our hospitals were paying drug companies and vendors what these other countries were paying for things they wouldn't be in such bad shape. Why does a Stryker artificial knee cost 4x in the US what it costs in India? Companies actually send their employees to India for surgery because it's cheaper for their insurance. How screwed up is that?

Enough ranting. I read that article about Wellstar today and just got pissed off.

Posted by NowISeetheLight | Thu Sep 1, 2022, 01:34 PM (22 replies)

Medical Care for Children? Religion? The SCOTUS?

I read an article on yahoo news tonight about 12 members of an Australian church being arrested for denying a diabetic child insulin (she died).

https://news.yahoo.com/twelve-religious-group-members-arrested-084011421.html

It got me thinking about cases like this here in the US. From time to time I’ve seen cases like this in the news where kids died, or almost died, and the parents were charged. Some states have laws requiring medical care. Given our new Supreme Christian Court I’m wondering how long until we see laws about this being thrown out based on “freedom of religion”. Healthline has a good article about parents religious beliefs becoming child abuse.

https://www.healthline.com/health-news/parents-beliefs-about-medicine-child-abuse

Going even further. There are states that allow people like pharmacists refuse to serve patients based on religion. What if a doctor refuses to treat a child based on religion? Back in 2015 there was a case in Michigan where a pediatrician “prayed” and decided to refuse to see an infant because the child’s parents were a lesbian couple.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2015/02/19/pediatrician-refuses-to-treat-baby-with-lesbian-parents-and-theres-nothing-illegal-about-it/

Could a Jewish firefighter refuse to rescue someone from a burning mosque? Or a Muslim firefighter refuse to save a Jewish person from a burning synagogue? After all it’s “religious freedom” and apparently all you need is a “sincerely held belief”.

What about race? With the rise of white Christian nationalism how long until we see some right wing individual discriminate against a minority based on their “religious belief” that whites are superior? How would the Supreme Court decide something like that? After all there are anti-discrimination laws on the books but without a “tradition” and it not being in the Constitution, what could SCOTUS do?

I believe in “God” but I readily admit I don’t know what that is. I do know though I don’t believe about 95% of what man says about God. I don’t need to know. That’s why it’s called “faith”. It’s a personal decision. I’m secure enough in my personal faith to not need to force beliefs on anyone else. Seeing this country backslide to the days of religious dogma and theocracy is a nightmare I’d hope to never witness. Instead I have a front row seat.



Posted by NowISeetheLight | Wed Jul 6, 2022, 11:17 PM (3 replies)

Guilty Plea in Pennsylvania Voter Fraud Case

OK this guy needs to go to prison for a long time (and he's a D). I'm sure Faux news is going to be all over this one.

https://www.justice.gov/usao-edpa/pr/former-us-congressman-and-philadelphia-political-operative-pleads-guilty-election-fraud

Posted by NowISeetheLight | Wed Jun 8, 2022, 02:57 PM (1 replies)

States Decision?

Then how about states pay for themselves. There has long been a series of Red states funded by Blue states. The Red states have ultra-low taxes and criticize the taxes in blue states yet happily take in a lot more than they pay in federal taxes. The Southern states are some of the biggest culprits, especially Moscow Mitch McConnels Kentucky. I remember when he criticized Covid aid to New York and Governor Cuomo replied “fine then give us back our $20b+ in overpayments”.

If states want the right to vote and make decisions about peoples lives let them pay for themselves. Interstate highways should be funded federally but all this aid for rural roads, infrastructure, etc, let them pay for it.

I know here in California we are criticized a lot by the Red states. We’ll give us back the $6b+ extra we paid in then. If you think your state is so great let it pay for itself. If your state is such a great state you don’t need other states to pay your way. Right?

New York is the largest donor state in the U.S., with a negative balance of payments at $22,798,000,000. For every dollar New York gives the federal government, its residents are only receiving $0.91 back.

Seven other states are donor states:

New Jersey (-$10,334,000,000)
Massachusetts (-$9,919,000,000)
California (-$6,653,000,000)
Connecticut ($5,754,000,000)
Minnesota (-$1,896,000,000)
Colorado ($1,374,000,000)
Utah (-$416,000,000)
Virginia is at the opposite end of the spectrum, with the highest positive balance of payments. Virginia’s balance of payments is $111,785,000,000, and residents receive $2.24 for every dollar sent to the federal government. Kentucky follows with $63,229,000,000 and the highest expenditure per dollar of receipts at $2.89.

The ten states with the largest positive balance of payments (the biggest takers) are:

Virginia ($111,785,000,000)
Kentucky ($63,229,000,000)
Florida ($50,999,000,000)
Maryland ($49,942,000,000)
Ohio ($42,004,000,000)
Pennsylvania ($41,516,000,000)
North Carolina ($35,437,000,000)
Alabama ($33,033,000,000)
Arizona ($30,907,000,000)
South Carolina ($28,209,000,000)


A lot of Red states getting “handouts”….

https://www.moneygeek.com/living/states-most-reliant-federal-government/





Posted by NowISeetheLight | Thu May 5, 2022, 10:48 PM (17 replies)

TV Commercial Ideas for SCOTUS & Republicans...

If I had Bill Gates type money I know what I’d be doing with it. Starting next year there would be a non-stop TV and print ad campaign describing the Republican “Right” effect on real people with the Roe and I’m sure future marriage decisions. I came up with a couple commercial ideas. Please post your own too. Playing “nice” obviously hasn’t worked.

Commercial #1 - Two parents in an ER…. The doctor comes out and tells them their 12 year old daughter has been assaulted. They ask about an abortion pill but are told the Republicans have made it illegal. They go home and try to order one online but are unable too due to Republican legislation. Fast forward a few weeks and they talk to another doctor who tells them their daughter is pregnant. They ask about abortion but are told thanks to the Republican gerrymandered state legislature it is illegal. They don’t have the money to travel to another state. Their daughter doesn’t have healthcare because they both work at a discount store without insurance and they can’t afford the exchange. There was no Medicaid expansion in their state. Fast forward seven months and the baby is born… but the daughter dies in childbirth from complications because she was so young. The parents are attending her funeral.

Commercial #2 - A single woman is pregnant after a brutal asssult… she wants an abortion pill but a religious fanatic pharmacist refuses… She is unable to get one and a few weeks later is told she is pregnant… She is told the child has several chromosomal abnormalities and will be very disabled. The child won’t be able to even get out of bed, will be blind and deaf, and only has a life expectancy of a few years. The child will be suffering and spend most of its time in hospitals. She asks about abortion to spare the child but is given the “Republican ban” excuse. Fast forward four years. She is attending the child’s funeral. She is bankrupt now because she had to quit her job to care for the baby. The commercial explains that while Republicans cared for the unborn child they could care less when it was born. So the child suffered for four years in agony and the mothers life was destroyed. She was victimized twice. First by her assailant and again by the Republican laws.

Commercial #3 - A pregnant woman who is alcoholic is told her child will have severe fetal alcohol syndrome. The child will have severe disabilities and will not be able to have a “normal life”. The woman wants to have an abortion but is denied. She decides to carry the child to term. She has the child but puts it up for adoption. Fast forward 18 years. The child, shuffled thru countless foster homes, disabled. undereducated, aged out from foster care, and is homeless living on the streets. The now adult has no healthcare because there was no Medicaid expansion. He devolves into drugs and crime. No one adopted this child into a “good home with a mother and father”. The commercial explains that while Republicans claim adoption is the answer for abortion the reality is much different. We can even get the CURRENT kids adopted… are all these Christian’s going to adopt them AND the future kids?

This is playing dirty… but perhaps in this era of the right screaming about predators in womens bathrooms and stuff it’s all they will understand.

Note: I’m adopted and I’m very pro adoption.

Some stats from childrensrights.org

On any given day, there are nearly 424,000 children in foster care in the United States.

In 2019, over 672,000 children spent time in U.S. foster care.

On average, children remain in state care for over a year and a half, and five percent of children in foster care have languished there for five or more years.

Despite the common perception that the majority of children in foster care are very young, the average age of kids entering care is 8.

In 2019, one third of children entering U.S. foster care were young people of color.

In 2019, more than 71,000 children – whose mothers’ and fathers’ parental rights had been legally terminated – were waiting to be adopted.

In 2019, more than 20,000 young people aged out of foster care without permanent families. Research has shown that those who leave care without being linked to forever families have a higher likelihood than youth in the general population to experience homelessness, unemployment, and incarceration as adults.


Posted by NowISeetheLight | Thu May 5, 2022, 10:31 PM (0 replies)

Russia Stands Alone

As long as the EU countries (and the rest of the world) condemn them and hold the line Russia will fail. Sure they can veto UN Security Council resolutions but in reality they’re in their own. Unlike Hitler who found allies in Italy and Japan I can’t see anyone publicly supporting him. Sure some countries may abstain in UN votes but I can’t see anyone actually actually voting in favor of this invasion.

https://www.npr.org/2022/02/25/1083252456/russia-vetoes-un-security-council-resolution-that-denounces-its-invasion-of-ukra

Russia’s stock market already crashed 50% after the invasion. Now with removal from SWIFT and other sanctions they’re in for a hard time. While the Russian citizenry may buy the government line for a while “It’s the economy stupid” will eventually get Putin.
Posted by NowISeetheLight | Sat Feb 26, 2022, 08:21 PM (28 replies)
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