Be thankful I don’t take it all…

We here at Leavenworth Street are in the process of doing our taxes.
So we are crankier than usual.

And here’s the thing about being W-2’d:
Sure it makes it easier to “pay”, since it has already been taken from you and you don’t have to come up with the money later.

But then there is the whole B.S. “I got a refund!” feeling. You know, after you realize it is all your money in the first place.

Then there is the fact that having it held back makes it “easier”. But in many ways it would be better if everyone was forced to write a check. Just so citizens could have the true feeling of Giving Your Money to the Government.

Anywho, what a freaking mess.

***

The Nebraska Democrats are going to have another Presidential caucus in 2012 to … do something.

You know. The awesome caucus. Where you sit in a traffic jam, then you may or may not get in, and get a scrap of paper and then give up your right to the secret ballot.

The caucuses. They’re awesome.

Rock on, Dems.

***

And we noted before that Omaha’s head Dem, Mayor Jim Suttle, is in a doc about the recall.

The OWH said it is called, “Recall Fever.”

Except it’s not.

It is called, “Recall Fever: Stop The Madness”.

Just in case you thought this was some sort of an independent “documentary” with a neutral point of view. It is not.

It is an education video (“film”? Really?) by the U.S. Conference of Mayors for other mayors to be aware of those pesky “citizens.

Put it in your Netflix queue.

***

We note that Douglas County Clerk, Tom Cavanaugh, cut his operating budget by $80K — 4.3% less than the current budget.

Good for him. Sounds like it is based on a better use of technology.

And we would also note that we telling you about this because we received a press release from Cavanaugh’s office. It is amazing what you can find out, and post, when someone sends you a press release. Just amazing.

***

And did you see the story on Drudge about the Chicago Public School that does not let kids bring their own lunches from home, because their parents don’t pack healthy enough lunches?

Here’s the thing: If someone on the Right had claimed, say five years ago, that this sort of thing is bound to happen, the Left would have called them a paranoid right-wing nut.

And yet, here we are.

Hope the lunch you pack is healthy and yummy enough for the school’s standards…

53 comments

  1. Insult to Injury says:

    SS,
    You forgot to mention that if your income is sporadic (sales, seasonal, etc) throughout the year and you make ‘a little too much’ in a Quarter Uncle Sam charges you a little thing called ‘penalty and interest’ for not giving him ‘his fair share’ of your money sooner. If you get a refund (he withheld too much) up to 1 year after when you actually earned some of your money, they don’t include any interest back to you.

    Couple this with the fact that I spent over 1.5% of my adjusted gross income (according to Al Gore I’m ‘rich’ making over 60K) on an accountant just to figure what is ‘my fair share’ and you have a great case for why the IRS needs to be eliminated and replaced with either a ‘Flat’ or ‘Fair’ tax!

    Thank heaven’s health care is now ‘free’!

  2. Anonymous says:

    I’d agree with Suttle that the recall was plotted by a well financed group. Unfortunately, Jim was the one who kept handing them the bullets and loading the gun he handed them.

  3. Charles says:

    Suttle sent a tweet yesterday asking what to do with the sales tax money – how to reinvest it he says. Before the legislature passes the bill and before the people vote on a tax he is already making plans to spend it.

  4. Anonymosity says:

    Correct me if I am wrong, but isn’t a caucus for choosing between two or more presidential candidates? If Barry is the only candidate they have, just what is it that the democrats are supposed to be doing?

  5. Grandma Moses says:

    Re: Chi-town public school lunch

    If your mama was only packing you with hot cheetos and purple drink you would be psyched for some good hot lunch action…

  6. Oracle says:

    Unless Obama has a primary opponent, the 2012 caucuses will be an organizational tool for Democrats. It’s a get together, and you’d be surprised at the number of volunteers gleaned from the 2008 caucuses. But attendance will be down significantly if the primary is uncontested. Last time I checked, Iowa will still be holding their caucus even if Obama is the only name on the ballot.

  7. Dan Brown says:

    Tom Cavanaugh cut his budget by 4.3%. Would that be because the County Board took away his Comptroller duties? I heard on the radio today that he was speaking at the Tea Party Rally. So he and Ben are both Conservatives now? Is that because he knows the Republicans have a viable candidate to run against him next year? Stay tuned!

  8. Greg says:

    I’m sure the Chicago school lunches are so much healthier than the lunches that are packed at home. Ms. Obama’s district in Chicago was the worst when it came to childhood obesity, I thought she was wiping out childhood obesity? Maybe this is the first step. On a lighter note, what about when the kids go home from school? If the food isn’t healthy enough to send to school how can it be healthy outside of school? Will Chicago start mandating what foods can be served to children at home as well as school? Will grocery stores be forced to sell healtier food? I love 1984.

  9. Thanks, Sweeper, for letting everyone know about their Douglas County Clerk’s employees continuing successful efforts to cut spending by more than $275,000 over three consecutive budget years, including a 74% cut in non-salary expenditures, while at the same time improving public access to financial reports on the Clerk’s website.

    While one or two elected officials here are not pleased with the county’s financial and union contract information this office provides our taxpayers, public accountability and transparency take top priority in your Douglas County Clerk’s office.

    As a public servant of the citizens of our county, I welcome any and all opportunities to meet and visit with those who pay my salary. I also invite all of our citizens to view their County Clerk’s website and share with me their comments and suggestions for improving our service to them. Keep up the good work, S.S.

    Tom Cavanaugh, your Douglas County Clerk/Comptroller

  10. Chuck says:

    As I see it, the primary reason the Democrats will be holding their caucus in 2012 is so that the state party can find more people to beg for contributions. Since nearly all of the money collected only serves party activities within Lincoln and Omaha, any Democrat in the rest of the state would be a fool to let them have it. How does helping fund Beutler’s or Suttle’s campaigns do a damned thing for a rancher in Alliance?

  11. Oracle says:

    Chuck, your post makes no sense. Each county runs its own caucus. If any money is collected it would go to the county.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Street Sweeper, regarding your heartburn with Income Tax, many people have tried to protest the constitutionality of individual income tax. However, the Fifth District Court addressed this saying,

    “We perceive no need to refute these arguments with somber reasoning and copious citation of precedent; to do so might suggest that these arguments have some colorable merit. The constitutionality of our income tax system –including the role played within that system by the Internal Revenue Service and the Tax Court– has long been established… (the petitioner’s argument) is a hodgepodge of unsupported assertions, irrelevant platitudes, and legalistic gibberish.”

    Translation: “I AM A JUDGE, G*DDAMNIT! I AM PAID IN DOLLARS YANKED OUT OF YOUR PAYCHECK BY THE IRS. AND I AM NOT ABOUT TO BREAK MY OWN RICE BOWL FOR SAKE OF YOU WHINING AS MY VICTIM. YOU ARE THE MEASLY SUBHUMAN HERE. YOU WILL SHUT UP AND PAY YOUR TAXES OR I WILL THROW YOUR ASS IN PRISON!”

  13. One Out In The Third says:

    Good thing there are very few military in the Dem/Progressive Party…Their chances of actively and fairly participating are nil if they are out of state or overseas. I addressed this to Ben Nelson during the last carcass…he didn’t have a clue to the process and all I got was lip service. I guess it felt good.

  14. Kortezzi says:

    I don’t think there’s much chance a majority of Omahans (or residents of ANY city in Nebraska) are in favor of a sales tax increase.

    Which is why if the sales tax increase bill survives Gov Dave’s veto, the Democrats will get them passed by scheduling SPECIAL ELECTIONS without anything else on the ballot to attract interest. Turnout will be pitifully low, barely 10%, so the sales tax increase will PASS because the gov’t employees and union thugs will be only ones to show up in force at the polls.

    This is how liberals operate. Don’t kid yourselves that Ashford’s “vote of the people” provision will stop the 8% sales tax from coming.

  15. Anonymous says:

    The caucus for the democrats are allowing absentee ballots. Any one in the military can vote in them. There are lots of democrats in the military. Unlike the draft dodger Cheney or the run away Bush. The republican caucus in Iowa does not have an absentee ballot so I guess the GOP screws the military there. Why is any one surprised?

  16. Anonymous says:

    anonymous 7:36 Since you have never read the constitution I thought i would give you the below information. LOL

    The Sixteenth Amendment (Amendment XVI) to the United States Constitution allows the Congress to levy an income tax without apportioning it among the states or basing it on Census results. This amendment exempted income taxes from the constitutional requirements regarding direct taxes, after income taxes on rents, dividends, and interest were ruled to be direct taxes in Pollock v. Farmers’ Loan & Trust Co. (1895). It was ratified on February 3, 1913.

  17. Brian T. Osborn says:

    1/3rd – Do you just make this stuff up? You should get a job working as a stringer for Faux News’ Nebraska desk. No contact with reality is required.
    As for the Benator, he has absolutely nothing to do with the caucuses. His interest in the party comes from the so-called “coordinated campaign.” It uses party resources, but won’t be held responsible for what it has done with them.
    Kortezzi – If the Republicans don’t show up to vote, or don’t understand the political process, it is YOUR fault for not mobilizing and educating them. Liberals understand that. So what’s your beef?

  18. Oh Mander says:

    SS – Your streets are paved, your water is clean (sorta), and all those friendly folks in the west half of this fine state have high speed internet with which to access your website. Just cut the god damn check and thank your lucky stars that this isn’t (insert any other country here).

  19. Anonymous says:

    Caucus is not spelled “carcass”. The correct alternative spelling is “circus”. The carcass is what’s left after the circus closes down. Now as for the “Unicarnival”…

  20. PayDay says:

    How much of a revenue increase did they see in Chicago when they mandate you buy their lunch or go hungry? You know the OPS board is thinking this is a good idea.

    And I thought it was heavy handed when the movie theater didn’t want me to bring my own Twix!

  21. slimshady says:

    I would hope a legit candidate would be Chip Maxwell. I applaud his efforts with the Fatherhood initative in north Omaha, and now his leadership on the Alliance for the Private Sector.
    Perhaps we should be targeting Commissioner Pam Tusa, who’s been very quiet on the County Board and her personal finance troubles may weaken her re-election bid.
    I know many of us Conservatives are looking soley at defeating Ben Nelson but what are the other “vulnerable” Democrats locally?

    The Chicago Public School thing is insane. Why do we need parents anymore? Who needs mom or dad, when Uncle Sam, Federal Government, Public Schools will raise your kids for you?

  22. Anonymous says:

    @ slimshady

    If you don’t know who they are, then they haven’t done anything bad enough to get your attention. Your post highlights a growing problem on both sides – people vote for parties instead of candidates.

  23. Grundle King says:

    Cigar Smoker,

    The 2nd Amendment is in the Constitution too, but judging by the political slant of some of your other posts, I’m guessing you’re the type that thinks it shouldn’t be.

    Oh wait, it’s just there to make sure the government doesn’t infringe on the right to arm their own soldiers, right?

  24. Cigar Smoker says:

    Grundle King,

    I am the proud owner of a Springfield .45 and am a damn fine shot if I say so myself. Before you ask, yes it is registered. I dont use it for concealed carry because I want something smaller for that, probably a compact .40 or 9mm because they’re smaller and its much cheaper to shoot than my .45.
    I believe in and appreciate all them Amendments (except the 18th), the 1st is my favorite because as an atheist I really dont like it when the religious nutjobs of your party try to force it down my throat. The 2nd is a good one, and the 21st is an GREAT amendment. Every December 5th I raise my cup/glass/bottle/can in celebration of tht particular amendment.
    And since you like to play the guessing game please allow me. You want to force women to have babies they dont want, you’re a pro religion republican who is opposed to science and education because all the answers can be found in your goddamned bible. You’re pro prayer in public schools, you oppose the 13th,14th and 15th amendments and cite the 10th as the basis of your claim. You dont like the 16th and so you probably oppose the 17th (I saw some teabaggers didn’t like that so I’ll lump you in with them). Anything Im missing?

    Maybe I dont know you, but you sure as hell dont know me. Lets skip the sterotyping, shall we?

  25. Anonymous says:

    Grundle King your talking nonsense. Everyone knows what the 2nd amendment says . But Anonymous 7:36 had no clue that paying income taxes was in the Constitution. You can have an opinion if they are good amendments. . But don’t make up stuff and say it does not exist. That is too much like FOX news and should not be tolerated.

  26. Anonymous says:

    Amendments aren’t “in” the Constitution. They are amended “to” the Constitution.

    Some amendments make sense by clarifying its original intent, such as eliminating slavery. Other amendments, however, damage the Constitution by undermining the very balances ensconced within it.

    Our founders gave us a clockwork mechanism for freedom and prosperity. Amendments that oil that clockwork help. But Amendments such as those in 1913, substitute cogs for springs and levers for cogs, leaving our Constitution limping. Among other things, it crippled states as “laboratories of federalism”, thus turing federal lawmaking from a once wise application of proven state policies, to something more like a group of blind guys juggling grenades. From the same era came Income Tax.

    Taxation was indeed “clarified” by Amendment. But before we try to suggest that constitutional amendments are carved in stone, let’s all sit back and have another sip of our formally illegal beer.

  27. Dennis says:

    Today’s OWH reported that Jon Bruning “applauded” a GOP plan by U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., that calls for privatizing Medicare and for $1 trillion in tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires. It’s apparent that Bruning has gone all in with the Tea Party crowd. This will create a big contrast with Ben Nelson in next year’s Senate race. Pete Ricketts got himself in trouble in 2006 by adopting hard right agenda. In that prior election, Ricketts came out for privatized S.S. and a regressive national sales tax. Senator Nelson attacked Ricketts relentlessly over his platform and Rickett was beat pretty badly. Let’s hope that history repeats itself.

  28. RWP says:

    Sorry, Dennis, Nelson just came out against tax cuts for the sorta rich. So you have a clear choice betwen conservative one year out of every six Nelson, and Conservative since he discoved that’s the way to run in Nebraska Bruning.

    Florida looks better every day.

  29. GeosUser says:

    Payoff The National Debt Sale Proposal…
    As both parties posture over their supposed plans to end deficit spending
    and begin paying off the national debt, I have an idea that might make a
    significant dent in the over $14 trillion national debt. According to the
    USDebtClock.org, each taxpayer’s share of the debt is $128,559. Here’s my
    idea, in return for a one-time cash payment to the US Treasury of $128,559
    which is to be only used for debt repayment, the taxpayer making that one
    time payment purchases a lifetime maximum income tax rate of 20%. To
    facilitate making such a payment, traditional IRA account or 401k account
    funds could be used with no early withdrawal penalty or income tax due.
    This program would be restricted to individuals only, no corporations. As a
    guard against future change of heart from the Treasury, a default on the
    program by the government would require repayment of the $128,559 plus
    interest as charged by the IRS for late tax payment amounts. I’d bet there
    would be trillions of “buy a lifetime lower tax rate” dollars that could be
    immediately applied bringing the national debt much lower in a very short
    time.

  30. Macdaddy says:

    Sweeper, if you’re paying income taxes, then you are obviously one of the filthy rich who got that way on the backs of the poor.

  31. GeosUser says:

    Anonymous @ 09:57
    Because I composed it using a text editing program called EditPlus3. Any other stupid questions you’d like to ask???

  32. Macdaddy says:

    Oh, sorry, Sweeper. Didn’t mean to belittle you in this new era of civility. You are actually reducing spending in the tax code. Now don’t you feel better?

  33. Grundle King says:

    Cigar Smoker wrote: “And since you like to play the guessing game please allow me. You want to force women to have babies they dont want, you’re a pro religion republican who is opposed to science and education because all the answers can be found in your goddamned bible. You’re pro prayer in public schools, you oppose the 13th,14th and 15th amendments and cite the 10th as the basis of your claim. You dont like the 16th and so you probably oppose the 17th (I saw some teabaggers didn’t like that so I’ll lump you in with them). Anything Im missing?”

    I don’t want to force women to have babies they don’t want…but I would like for men AND women to stop creating babies they don’t want. I would also like for women to stop killing babies they don’t want. We’ve got a safe haven law, don’t we? They can give birth without keeping them…but a pregnancy can be a real social drag, which appears to be the only real justification for elective abortion.

    I support religion, science, and education, because I don’t find them to be mutually exclusive. I support the right of students be ALLOWED to pray in school, if they are doing so on their own free will. I don’t support forcing anyone to pray.

    I believe abolishing slavery and allowing minorities and women to vote was, quite obviously, the right thing to do. I also believe that children who are born to non-citizen parents in this country are citizens of this country…but I don’t believe their non-citizen parents should be allowed to stick around. The 16th and 17th are fine with me, though I’ll be damned if I ever say I ENJOY paying income taxes.

    I was wrong, and I apologize for stereotyping you…though I think your response was a bit of overkill.

  34. Anonymous says:

    I would not force Republican women to have babies they don’t want. But it would be nice to force Democrat women to have abortions. But now that I think about that, Democrat women are the ones volunteering to have abortions.

    And the down side of that is what exactly? Seems like a reasonable long term strategy to improve the atmosphere of polical blogs.

  35. Kortezzi says:

    Hey BTO,
    Governor Dave is right. If we can have a ballot issue for cities to decide on a 1/2% sales tax increase, voters should be guaranteed the right to vote for a 1/2% sales tax DECREASE, too.

    THEN let’s see how that election turns out! But you probably are afraid of any ballot initiative that could roll back taxes, aren’t you? Liberals like it when the deck is stacked in their favor. Hence their love of the current CIR regime.

  36. One Out In The Third says:

    anon and BTO…

    The phony Dem “Carcass” absentee ballot gives them one vote only. They get one pick and if their pick fails they are done. I contacted the NE Dem Party to protest their discriminatory poor excuse of an absentee ballot. They mailed me a copy of the ballot with a weak explanation of how our military folks were being included. I also contacted Ben Nelson’s office about the “Carcass” to point out the military “feel good” absentee flaw…neither seemed to care and Ben’s office had no clue. I contacted Nelson’s office because Nebraska’s military men and women overseas and out-of-state were being snubbed. If you believe Nelson has no influence over the NE Dem Party you must be living under a rock with a Holdrege mailing address.

    There are other flaws/weaknesses in the NE Caucus process and you can investigate the rest on you own. Why are Dems so afraid of secret balloting?

    I am an Independent and I have voted for the candidate that I felt would do the best job…Rep. or Dem. I even became a RINO for a Day once to vote for a man I felt better qualified in a recent Primary.

    I’ll pass on the “stringer” job….I love the job I currently have.

  37. Anonymous says:

    Its a mistake to assume the two parties have the same innards. Democrats and Republicans actually reflect their names rather well. Democrats emphasis popular vote democracy. Much of the GOP’s inner functioning reflects that of a representative voting republic. But of course the USA isn’t a democracy because that means 51% can murder the 49%, as well as everyone chaotically voting on everything; which to some degree accounts for cannibalism and chaos in the donkey’s bowels. The elephant has more cohesion but with that comes its own set of difficulties. The donkey usually could use some cheese, the elephant some prune juice. But they digest things very differently just as they see things very differently.

    Sure, all politicians are egotists who want to hold power over others. But it is a big mistake to view the GOP and Democratic Parties as nothing more than differing degrees of the same thing. Of course, one can always vote for an egotist on the false hope that power won’t corrupt. But it does. Its good to find some principles and a party to advocate them for you.

  38. Brian T. Osborn says:

    Kortezzi,
    You apparently only understand what you want to. Please explain how my comment had ANYTHING to do with the issue of the taxes or CIR? I commented on your idiotic analysis of how Democrats operate. My point was that if Republicans don’t show up to vote – for OR against – something, it is because YOU didn’t do your job to mobilize them. All you are doing is throwing monkey poop.

    1 out in the 3rd,
    There is NO way for anyone living outside of the state to actively participate in the caucuses unless they pay, or their transportation is subsidized, to come home and participate. It’s just the nature of the beast in every state that holds caucuses. The “absentee” ballot is probably the best that could be done in the context of the caucus. Life isn’t fair; that’s what the GOP keeps telling everyone. We Democrats at least TRY to make it more so.
    Trust me, The Benator really doesn’t care what goes on with the CAUCUS, unless he were running for POTUS, which is basically what I said. I did NOT say that he has no influence over the party. I wish the party had more influence over him. But, once again, it is the nature of the beast.
    I don’t fear the secret ballot for the individual voter. However, I believe people that are representing others should do so openly so that those represented can ascertain exactly how they are being represented.

  39. One Out In The Third says:

    Brian…

    Anyone “living outside the state”…unless in the military…would more than likely be a resident of another state and ineligible to enjoin the Dems in their circus…er…caucus. Then again the Dems have been known to “raise and register the dead” around election time.

  40. Brian T. Osborn says:

    1/3rd,
    “Living” outside of the state isn’t quite the same as “residing” outside of the state. There are many situations that could have a registered Nebraska voter temporarily outside of the state while remaining a legal voter here. You can be outside of the state for work, as a student, for medical reasons (at the Mayo Clinic or in Colorado for your cannabis), temporarily detained in Las Vegas for having a bit too much fun in Sin City … the list goes on and on.
    And what’s wrong with our “raising and registering the dead” around election time? The GOP wants to count all the unborn as citizens of the U.S.. If life begins before birth, why not after death?

  41. Brian T. Osborn says:

    Grundle,
    Just chalk it up to my warped sense of humor. What makes me snicker pisses others off. That’s just the way it works. You can’t dictate what tickles someone else’s funny-bone.
    But since you asked … what I find humorous is your constant parroting of Faux Noise talking points such as:
    • “a pregnancy can be a real social drag, which appears to be the only real justification for elective abortion.” Really? That is the ONLY reason? P’shaw!
    • “I support the right of students be ALLOWED to pray in school, if they are doing so on their own free will. I don’t support forcing anyone to pray.” They already HAVE that right. No one can force them to stop.
    • “I don’t believe their non-citizen parents should be allowed to stick around.” How very “family valuesy” of you!

  42. wwtod says:

    Brian,
    “A pregnancy can be a real social drag, which appears to be the the only justification for elective abortion.” You responded with, “Really? That is the ONLY reason? P’shaw!”

    Please elaborate… beyond those abortions performed to save the life of the mother, or those performed on rape victims, exactly what are the valid reasons for killing an unborn child? Since even Planned Parenthood says 97% of the abortions they perform are ‘contraceptive’ in nature, I’d like to hear those other reasons.

  43. Brian T. Osborn says:

    Hell’s bells, wwtod, you answered most of your question yourself. But even if it were ‘contraceptive’ in nature, it is none of your damned business, nor mine. It is a woman’s right to do with her own body as she damned well pleases.

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