Archive for seniors

Right Action, Wrong Reason - Gun Nuttiness Again In Texas

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Stephen Stern

Tragedy befell the city of Hearne, Texas, recently. A 93-year-old woman was gunned down by Officer Stephen Stern of the Hearne Police. And now the people of the small town want this cop's badge. They want him fired and the Mayor is leading the charge.

According to DailyMail:

'There's no justification. Any police officer would know not to kill a 93-year-old fragile woman when they could have backed off,' said William Foster, 64, a retired professor in Hearne. 'She was no threat to him.'

'That lady should be living today. She should not have died like she did,' Embra [another mourner] said.

Damn, when you hear it that way, it sure sounds like the cop used awful judgement. If that was all there was to the story, perhaps we'd agree. But it's best we hear all the details before we pass judgement.

It seems this all happened after Officer Stephen Stem responded to a 911 call about a disturbance involving a woman and a gun. When Stem arrived on scene, the 93-year-old woman was wildly brandishing her gun and refused to put it down. She aimed at the officer and he fired.

Now comes the public outrage. But is it because of this woman's age, or because the officer could have possibly found another way to diffuse the situation? The officer was responding to the 911 call. It came in because of a reported dangerous disturbance and a gun. Officer Stern fired three times, hitting the woman twice and grazing her with the third shot. Was this the right course of action? Did he use justifiable force? Well consider this. If this woman had fired, that bullet would have left the gun with the same lethal velocity.

Then what if the senior-aged woman had fired first and the cop was dead, would there be such a public outcry? Would the neighbors and friends of the late Pearlie Golden be lamenting the loss of this cop because he didn't shoot Ms. Golden when he had the chance? I doubt it. It seems the victim in this case isn't the 93-year-old woman. And it's not the cop either. It's the system that lets people loose with guns.

Yes, this is a plea, a call to sanity. It's a shout out for gun control. This result is what carrying and brandishing a gun can get you into. This woman should still be alive, all things considered. But she's not. And the reason why? Not because the cop shot her. It's because she was waving a gun. If she didn't have a gun, I very much doubt she would have been hurt, let alone killed. And there would be no reason for this story.

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Obamacare Puts Egg On Florida Gov. Rick Scott's Face

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Scott Florida

So what happens when you go campaigning in seemingly comfortable waters and things don't go as planned? Let's ask Florida Gov. Rick Scott. He went to a senior center in his state to warn about cuts he said that Obamacare is forcing in a popular version of the Medicare health program. His anticipation was to gain an attentive ear and even to collect senior's horror stories to add to his arsenal.

What he found instead was a satisfied group with few complaints. As a matter of fact, the seniors, by and large, had compliments to say about Obamacare. They even went out of their way to say they liked it.

The Sun Sentinel:

“I’m completely satisfied,” Harvey Eisen, 92, a West Boca resident, told Scott.

Eisen told the governor he wasn’t sure “if, as you say,” there are Obamacare-inspired cuts to Medicare. But even if there are, that would be OK. “I can’t expect that me as a senior citizen are going to get preferential treatment when other programs are also being cut.”

Ruthlyn Rubin, 66, of Boca Raton, told the governor that people who are too young for Medicare need the health coverage they get from Obamacare. If young people don’t have insurance, she said, everyone else ends up paying for their care when they get sick or injured and end up in the hospital.

So all that was left to do was enter spin mode when called out by the press on what happened. One bad story out of 20? If numbers matter, that's half a percent. More than that were offended by his tie.

Maybe running against Obamacare isn't the right plan for Republicans. Does it make you wonder if Scott's going to be blanketing the state, moving from retirement center to assisted living facility running on this issue.? After all, they don't call Florida 'God's waiting room' for nothing. They lead the nation in retirees. And seniors are happy with Obamacare overall. Keep it up, Gov. Rick. Soon Florida will be calling their chief executive, Governor Charlie Crist once again.

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Bonus Cartoons of the Day- Happy Holidays from the 113th Congress

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113th6

Mike Luckovich

Clay Bennett editorial cartoon

John Cole

113th4

Jimmy Margulies

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Fixing SNAP In A Snap

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Doh

The latest farm bill which is headed to a vote includes a $40 Billion dollar cut to SNAP. the supplemental nutrition assistance program. This will directly effect 1 in 7 Americans -- men, women, children, seniors, military. No one who receives this food subsidy will be spared part or even all of their benefits.

Who's pushing for this? Guess!

To be fair there are some in the GOP party who want to vote down this bill. But their reason is frightening. They don't think that the cutting of $40 billion goes deep enough. They literally want to starve children and seniors to death. The less of them collecting, the better. They're  just moochers gaming the system. They don't add anything to the GOP way of life, so get rid of them any way you can.  After all, their crime is they're too young or too old to work. That's their fault.

The real ironic part of this farm bill are those who are pushing the hardest for it. It's not to help farmers. It's to help them, farm owners. Here's the rub, passing this bill puts money in their pockets while the needy starve.

Let me name a few congressmen(women) who are fighting tooth and nail for this bill to pass. And you want to know why? Check this out, courtesy of Buzz Feed:

farm at dusk

During the food stamp debate, GOP Rep. Stephen Fincher, who received thousands in farm subsidies, responded to a Democratic Congressman during the debate over the cuts by quoting the bible, saying “the one who is unwilling to work shall not eat.”

Fincher himself has received his own large share of government money. From 1999 to 2012, Stephen & Lynn Fincher Farms received $3,483,824 in agriculture subsidies. Last year he took in $70,574 alone.

Seems Fincher's up on his bible babble, but what about people who live in glass houses should not throw stones? Not the bible, a Spanish proverb, but perhaps a bit more appropriate. Then there's:

Another Republican congresswoman who voted to make cuts to the food stamp program was Rep. Vicky Hartzler of Missouri. Her farm received more than $800,000 in Department of Agriculture subsidies from 1995-2012.

Rep. Kristi Noem of South Dakota, whos farm received $3.4 million in subsidies from 1995-2012.

Rep. Marlin Stutzman, a Republican Rep. from Indiana also received his fair share of government subsidies. He personally took in nearly $200,000 for the farm he co-owns with his father.

This is not a full list, but just a sampling.

Now I said there's a way for Democrats to stop the cuts all together. From Mother Jones:

And as Boehner saw in June, winning House Democrats' votes for a bill that slashes food stamps by billions of dollars is a heavy lift—after all, if no farm bill passes, food stamps spending would remain at current levels. Why compromise when you can win by doing nothing at all? "It would make sense," emails a House Democratic aide, "for progressives to vote against [the farm bill].

Need a visual: Here you go.

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