Welfare States Of America

federal government dependent red states blue states
The map above is striking. It is a perfect illustration that politics and facts at times seem mutually exclusive. In short, with just a few exceptions, the states whose politicians preach small government are much more dependent on it than other states.
States in green or closer to green on the map above are less dependent on the federal government. States in red or closer to red on the map above are more dependent on the federal government.
John S Kiernan, a senior writer & editor at Evolution Finance wrote an excellent piece on state federal government dependency. He compiled data from the Internal Revenue Service, the Census Bureau, Transparency.gov, US Department of Commerce – Bureau of Economic Analysis and the Bureau of Labor Statistics. There is a striking political & economic statement in his article that should be digested.
The extent to which the average American’s tax burden would vary based on his state of residence represents a significant point of differentiation between state economies.  But it’s only once piece of the puzzle.
What if, for example, a particular state can afford not to tax its residents at high rates because it’s receiving disproportionately more funding from the federal government than states with apparently oppressive tax codes?  That would change the narrative significantly, revealing federal dependence where bold, efficient stewardship was once thought to preside.
The conclusion of the report is something many have written about over the last several years; Red States by far are more dependent on the federal government and are poorer. In the aggregate these states take back much more from the federal government than they put in. More of their gross domestic product is also more dependent on direct and indirect government outlays. This turns the takers vs makers debate on its head as those pushing that message represent the end they portend to despise.

Do they really want a small federal government? It would kill their states’ economies.

Many of the southern states that have no state income tax or have low taxes do so on the backs of the states that pay much more in federal taxes. Governors like Texas Rick Perry make the rounds attempting to bring business to their states. They do it under the pretext of these states having better business environments because of low taxes and regulations. They should note they can have low taxes because they are subsidized by the federal government and the poor.
Articles like this are very important. Most Americans get their perspective from 10 second, 15 second, and 30 second sound bites. Data like this helps remove the blinders and rose colored glasses.

Source: http://egbertowillies.com/

Top Ten Countdown Out Right Lies The GOP Tell Their Base

10) Obama Doubled the Deficit.
This was a favorite of the Mitt Romney campaign. Throughout 2012, Romney repeatedly said, "The president promised to cut the deficit in half. He's doubled it!" No. No he hasn't. First of all, this line depends entirely on voters not understanding the difference between the deficit and the debt. See previous "simpleton" remarks. Indeed, the president has absolutely cut the deficit by way more than half in his first five years. When he took office, the deficit for 2009 was projected to be $1.4 trillion. The deficit at the end of 2014 will be $514 billion, just three percent of GDP. That's a nearly $1 trillion reduction in five years. Not only that, but the administration boasts the lowest year-over-year increase in government spending since Truman, and it'll be one of just three administrations in the last 50 years that will have ended with a lower deficit than when it began. The last Republican do leave the White House with the same record was Eisenhower.
9) Man-Made Climate Change Is a Hoax.
According to a clearly liberal agency called "NASA," a full 97 percent of scientists with specific expertise in climate science agree that climate change is real and humans are causing it. We shouldn't really have to say anything else. Of course if you're Lloyd Christmas from Dumb & Dumber, and "one-in-a-million" means "there's a chance," then the three percent of scientists who aren't sure about climate change obviously indicates that it's a hoax.

8) Cold Weather Disproves Climate Change
Second in our trifecta of climate change myths is an annual favorite. Every time it snows, you know the drill. Whenever there's a snow storm everyone from Matt Drudge to Rush Limbaugh suddenly achieves nipple erections hard enough to cut glass. And out comes the myth that climate change can't possibly be real because it's snowing somewhere. What they fail to explain to their disciples is that New York City or Minnesota or Washington, D.C., isn't, you know, the globe. Climate scientists base their global warming observations on global temperature averages. So while it might be snowing outside Sean Hannity's house, average temperatures year-over-year are growing progressively higher.
7) Tax Cuts Do More to Stimulate The Economy Than Food Stamps and Unemployment Benefits.
  • Every dollar spent on unemployment benefits generates 1.61 in economic growth.
  • Every dollar spent on food stamps generates 1.74 in economic growth.
  • But every dollar spent on rolling tax rates back to Bush-era levels only creates .32 in economic growth — that's a 68-cent loss on investment.
6) Cars Kill a Lot of People and No One Wants to Ban Them Like Guns!
Unlike firearms, cars aren't explicitly designed to kill or wound living beings (humans, animals, etc). They're designed to move you from one place to another. Yet unlike firearms, cars and drivers are heavily regulated by the government, from emissions standards to annual inspections to safety features, and so forth. You can't legally drive a car that doesn't feature seatbelts, or a car that spews too much exhaust into the air. You have to take both a written and a behind-the-wheel test to get a license to operate a car. You often have to renew that license at regular intervals and, if you're older, you have to prove that you're physically capable of driving a car. You can't drive a car while drinking alcohol or impaired by other chemicals. There are thousands of police officers patrolling our roads and, as most of us have experienced at one time or another, they will penalize or arrest you for improper handling of a car — with literally hundreds of laws to abide, and considerable penalties, ranging from fines to imprisonment to the government stripping you of your right to drive a car at all. So if the NRA and its supporters are going to keep using this car analogy, then let's talk about regulating guns and gun owners the same way we regulate cars and drivers.
5) The Affordable Care Act Covers Abortion-Inducing Emergency Contraception.
Admittedly, there are so many Obamacare myths to choose from: death panels, IRS goon squads raiding homes, it's a "job killing" law, it's a "government takeover," etc. It's all a pile of hooey and definitely worth mentioning here. But this lie about emergency contraception coverage is so insidious that it even managed fool some liberals. Contrary to lawsuits by various religious businesses and organizations, the various forms of emergency contraception covered by the law do not, in fact, block implantation of a fertilized egg. If these medications were indeed abortifacients, they wouldn't be covered because it's illegal for the government to do so. But they're not abortifacients, so they're covered. Simply put: while some emergency contraception blocks implantation, the emergency contraception that's covered in the law blocksovulation — not implantation. Of course that won't stop the lawsuits or likely factor into the opinions of perhaps five Supreme Court justices when the first major Obamacare contraception decision drops this Summer.
4) Obamaphones!
Okay, just stop it with this. No, the Obama campaign wasn't handing out free phones in exchange for votes. However, there's definitely a program that offers low-cost telephones to citizens who can't afford one. The truth is the Lifeline program has been around since 1984 when, that's right, Ronald Reagan helped to create it. In 1996, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) set up a non-profit outfit called the Universal Service Administrative Company, which receives financial backing via the Universal Service Fund. According to its website, money for the program is contributed entirely by "long distance companies, local telephone companies, wireless telephone companies, paging companies, and payphone providers," and none of the funding comes from taxpayers via the federal government. It's all privately donated money.
3) It's Safer to Have a Gun in the House, or a Concealed Weapon on Your Person.
I'm going to step aside and let an actual Republican debunk this one. Here's David Frum:
A gun in the house minimally doubles the risk that a household member will kill himself or herself. (Some studies put the increase in suicide risk as high as 10 times.) An American is 50 percent more likely to be shot dead by his or her own handthan to be shot dead by a criminal assailant. More than 30,000 Americans injure themselves with guns every year.
2) Exhaling Releases "Dangerous" CO2.
This is so dumb, it easily ranks as the most ridiculous climate change lie. Yes, more ridiculous than the blizzard thing. It's truly astonishing that anyone with half-a-brain actually believes it. Speaking of half-a-brain, here are some prime offenders:
"Carbon dioxide is basically this. (Exhales.) Look at how much pollution I just put out."
"We exhale CO2. If were a poison, it wouldn't be part of the way we stay alive."
"Carbon dioxide is a natural byproduct of nature."
"Now I know there is also a movement to say that carbon dioxide should be guided or should be managed by the Environmental Protection Agency. I disagree with that. I exhale carbon dioxide. I don't want those guys following me around with a meter to see if I'm breathing too hard."
The stupidity is, pardon the pun, breathtaking. On the surface, this "exhaling" silliness sounds like it might be true — if you're really into uneducated, simplistic explanations for very complex topics. Not only does human breathing not even makethe list of greenhouse gases but, chiefly, the ecosystem wasn't designed to scrub out unprecedented levels of CO2 released by the burning of fossil fuels. Therefore all of that excessive CO2 is just lingering in the atmosphere, trapping heat and scrambling our weather patterns.
1) Voter Fraud Is a Serious Issue That Requires Strict New Voter ID Laws.
Nope. Not even close. Once again, this falls into the Lloyd Christmas category. Successful prosecutions of voter fraud cases barely amount to one one-hundredth of one percent of total votes cast in a single general election. In Ohio, for example, Secretary of State Jon Husted ballyhooed his war against fraud by nabbing a whopping 20 potential cases. 20 out of nearly six million votes cast in that state in 2012. The Bush Justice Department found that there were as few as 80 successful prosecutions of voter fraud cases out of hundreds of millions of votes cast since 2000. For this ratio of possible-fraud-to-votes-cast we're told we need laws that make it more difficult to vote. By the way, some Republicans came right out and said it: this isall about electing Republicans.
That's it. It's of course foolish to think the Republicans will drop these lies and myths any time soon. But as long as various Republicans continue to repeat these transparently obvious falsehoods, they should expect that the rest of us will continue to think they're either idiots or that they're deliberately trying to deceive their own people — or maybe a little of both.
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BobCesca.com Blog with special thanks to Steve Duckett.

Belgian newspaper faces backlash for picture of the Obamas as apes

A Belgian newspaper Monday responded to intense backlash for printing a picture of President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama as apes.
De Morgen ran the photoshopped image in Saturday’s edition, calling the feature a satire that was poking fun at the ongoing tension facing the United States amid the crisis in Crimea. The image was printed days before the president’s visit to the Netherlands to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the start of World War I.
“Vladimir Putin is the president of Russia,” the newspaper wrote. “He sent us this attachment at our request, and chose to send pictures instead of text ‘because he doesn't have a lot of time.’”
Next to the image of the Obamas as apes, a photo of President Obama was also printed with the caption “First black president of the USA starts selling weed.”
The newspaper apologized for the image on Monday, writing that they showed “bad taste.”
“When you consider the fragment apart from its context, which is a properly worked out satirical section, then you don’t see the joke but just a picture evoking sheer racism,” the newspaper said. “We wrongly assumed that racism is is no longer accepted, and that in this way it could be the subject of a joke.”
Author Chika Unigwe, who lives in Belgium, tweeted the photo on Saturday.

View image on Twitter

A spokesman for Republican House Speaker John Boehner called Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid 'unhinged'

"A spokesman for Republican House Speaker John Boehner called Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid 'unhinged'on Monday, after Reid charged Republicans may have had a helping hand in emboldening Russia to annex Crimea. 'Since a few Republicans blocked these important sanctions last work period, Russian lawmakers voted to annex Crimea and Russian forces have taken over Ukrainian military bases,' Reid said Monday, according to The Associated Press. 'It's impossible to know whether events  would have unfolded differently if the United States had responded to Russian aggression with a strong, unified voice.' Reid was referring to the stalling of a Ukraine aid package in the Senate, after Republicans objected to a provision that contained reforms to the International Monetary Fund. But House and Senate GOP aides noted the Republican-controlled House had passed similar legislation without the IMF provisions, which Republicans have said is not a necessary attachment to a Ukraine aid bill. 'The Senate Majority Leader sounds completely unhinged,' Boehner spokesman Michael Steel told Business Insider in an email." Reid is probably still hinged, according to our sources. [Business Insider

Globalizing Homophobia

The Winter Games weren’t all that was going on in Russia this month… if you’ve been following the news, you know that some serious anti-gay bigotry has been on the rise, even at the highest levels of government.
What you might not know is how much of a role American right-wing leaders have played with efforts to make homophobia a national export.
PFAW’s new Right Wing Watch: In Focus report, “Globalizing Homophobia: How the American Right Supports and Defends Russia’s Anti-Gay Crackdown,” released this month, examines how American right-wing leaders have played an important role in promoting anti-gay policies not just in Russia, but around the world, working to inflame the passions of bigotry in Africa, Europe, South America and the Caribbean.
We also hosted an informative telebriefing on the subject for PFAW members led by PFAW senior fellow Peter Montgomery.