Saying ‘no’ to high-tax states … a no-brainer for tax plan … a misguided professor … and a meaningful project

Here are my observations on items in the news.

Sen. Pat Toomey stands against high-tax states (billypenn.com)

HOORAY FOR SENATOR TOOMEY – “There’s no good reason why federal taxpayers all across the country should have to subsidize, have to pay a higher federal tax rate to subsidize those municipalities that choose to have high taxes,” Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA) told radio host John Catsimatidia.

Toomey added that there is “no good reason” for the Senate tax reform legislation to include a federal tax deduction for local taxes, a deduction included in the House version of the bill.

Of the six states seeking the deduction, three – New York, New Jersey and California – have no Republican senators who could cause opposition to the GOP bill. I must remind you that those high-tax states voted for Hillary Clinton.

REPUBLICANS WORKING ON THE TAX PLAN are looking at the repeal of the ObamaCare individual mandate as part of tax reform, a move that would save $338 billion over 10 years.

If you like your ObamaCare plan, you can keep it. If you don’t want it or can’t afford it, you don’t have to pay a penalty. There would be no changes to benefits or coverage for pre-existing conditions. This would be tax relief for low-income families.

Professor Yanhah (photo cordozo.you.edu)

TALE OF A BLACK PROFESSOR – “Donald Trump’s election has made it clear that I will teach my boys the lesson generations old … I will teach them to be cautious, I will teach them suspicion, and I will teach them distrust … (and) I will have to discuss with my boys whether they can truly be friends with white people,” wrote Ekow N. Yankah, a professor at the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law at Yeshiva University.

In his op-ed piece in The New York Times, “Can My Children Be Friends With White People?,” Yankah seemingly wants readers to believe that his four-year-old son was wrestling with the meaning of “friendship” after he viewed the images of violence in Charlottesville. “Some people hate others because they are different, “he told his son,” who responded, “but I’m not different.”

“Meaningful friendship is not just a feeling,” Yankah states, “It is not simply able to share a beer. Real friendship is impossible without the ability to trust others, without knowing that your well-being is important to them.

“We can still all pretend we are friends. If meaningful civic friendship is impossible, we can make do with more civility – sharing drinks and watching the game,” he says projecting little hope.

I feel sorry for the professor’s sons.

SOME TIME AGO, I wrote of a simple suggestion to blacks: stop referring to themselves as African-American. However, it has been determined that individuals, who appear black, and experience more discrimination tend to identify with the experience of prejudice towards the African-American community, are more likely to reject the unhyphenated “American” label.

It has occurred to me, however, that as long as they settle for that reference to ethnicity, they only perpetuate an identity as “a minority.” I generally do not differentiate by race in my blog, but when necessary, I refer to an African-American as a “black,” unless the hyphenated identity is in a quote.

The Godoy family, Geiszel, Manuel, Valencia and Mori will star in the book series, The Mori’s Family Adventure. (Graphic from Kickstarter)

HERE’S SOMETHING MEANINGFUL – “My son and daughter are my biggest inspirations,” writes Geiszel Godoy, “Seeing them live a life of “privilege” made me want to share that experience with other kids, while also emphasizing the traditional black family unit.”

After barnstorming with her veteran children’s book author husband, Manuel, she decided to focus on a travel book for children. “I love telling our story and showing my husband as the alpha male leading the family,” she writes, “It seems tradition has been thrown to the side recently, and I felt it was important for kids to see a mother and father together in a children’s book.

“We need to normalize the black family again. The mainstream media is hellbent on pushing the narrative of the broken home, but it’s not true,” Godoy says.

In 2012, the Cooperative Children’s Book Center reported that 93 percent of the 3,600 books they reviewed were written about white children. As of 2016, 73.3 percent were primarily about white children, while 12.5 percent were about non-human and animals.

If you are interested in her worthy project, click here to see a video presentation.

 

Tax cut demagoguery begins … First Lady insulted … an NFL update … Brokaw sees crisis … punishing climate change deniers … Swamp-dweller Price resigns … and Justice Thomas finally honored

Here are my observations on items in the news.

WITH TAX CUT DETAILS STILL TO COME, Democrats and other naysayers are already spouting how it will help the wealthy and ignores the middle class. Here’s a sentence from Binyamin Applebaum’s New York Times story on how President Trump’s tax cut plan helps the rich: “The plan would not benefit lower-income households that do not pay federal income taxes.”

“So, let’s see: a tax cut doesn’t help people who don’t pay taxes,” writes Steven Hayward, “Whoa! What a concept! Let that sink in a minute.”

I wonder if Applebaum’s desk at the Times is next to Paul Krugman’s, who on the morning after the presidential election, predicted “a global economic recession with no end in sight.” Krugman also mocked Trump’s GDP projection.

First Lady Melania Trump was insulted by a school librarian after reading to elementary students. (neon-nettle.com)

MELANIA TRUP ACCUSED OF RACISM – It wasn’t enough that the anti-Trumpers fabricated a racism accusation over the president’s SOB remark regarding the NFL players who are dishonoring the flag and our national anthem. After the First Lady read from Dr. Seuss’s “Oh, the Places You’ll Go,” to an elementary class in Cambridge, Massachusetts, she donated ten Dr. Seuss books to the school, but the school librarian, Liz Phipps Soeiro, refused to accept the gift, criticizing Trump administration education policies and images in the books. Phipps Soeiro claims the illustrations in the Suess books are “steeped in racist propaganda, caricatures and harmful stereotypes.” Will this nonsense ever stop?

A FOLLOW UP TO MY “NO LONGER AN NFL FAN” PIECE – On September 25, I recalled my school days when we stood and pledged allegiance to the flag every morning, and how I couldn’t have imagined then the disrespect for the flag and our national anthem that we are experiencing today.

TWO DAYS LATER, the left-leaning Arizona Republic gave front page coverage with a color photograph of a Chandler High School senior who has been sitting during the pledge. When confronted by the teacher in private in the hallway, the black student said, “I personally don’t stand for the pledge because of everything that’s been going on in the African-American community, with police brutality and protests that have turned violent.” BUT, when the teacher asked her to stand in the hallway during the pledge in the future, the parents complained to the principal, who sided with the student, indicating he was proud of her. THE TEACHER later apologized to the student in front of the class, no doubt forced to do so by the principal. The teacher, I assume, needed the job and didn’t have the option of resigning. A sad day in our public school system.

AN ASIDE – In addition to the pledge that we responsibly recited beginning in elementary school, my public high school principal led us in the Lord’s Prayer. Can you imagine that taking place today?

GREEN BAY PACKER FANS, perhaps the most dedicated fan base in the NFL, said “hell no” to the players’ plea for fans to stand and lock arms in support of them during the playing of the national anthem on Thursday night. While a few did so, most stood with their hands over their hearts or saluted in military style.

HERE IS AN EXCERPT FROM THE NFL POLICY MANUAL that makes it quite clear what is expected of each team. “During the playing of the national anthem, players on the field should stand at attention, face the flag, hold helmets in their left hand, and refrain from talking.  Players in the bench areas should do the same, and line themselves up evenly along the sidelines.”

MEANWHILE, OVER AT NASCAR, several car owners openly disagreed with Dale Earnhardt Jr., who said protesting during the national anthem was okay with him. “Anybody that works for me should respect the country we live in,” said Richard Childress. Richard Petty agreed saying, “Any protester who works for him will be fired.”

“No one has the ‘right’ to protest on his company’s time,” writes Denise McAllister in a compelling piece published in The Federalist this week. “Here’s a lesson for those too immature or narcissistic to grasp it on their own: When you are at work, you don’t have the right to do, say, or wear anything you want. You have contracted your time to another person or a group, and it is your responsibility to do what they required of you. It is perfectly within their rights as employers to say they will fire anyone who does something they forbid on their time.”

Obviously, the 84 percent who supposedly support the players’ right to protest in the recent Seton Hall University poll are unaware of a person’s rights on or at a place of business.

AN ASIDE: As a public affairs vice president with a Fortune 500 firm, I was not permitted to cite my political opinions as I do in this blog, not even a letter to the editor of a newspaper.

MCALLISTER’S PIECE can be read in its entirety by clicking here.

NETWORK COMPLICITY – The networks seem to like what the players are doing to get back at the president for his remarks. Except for the Super Bowl, they typically do not televise the national anthem, but they obviously see this as a means to keep the controversy going.

TOM BROKAW just cannot stay retired, but MSNBC’s Morning Joe was more than happy to have him on air bad-mouthing President Trump. Referring to the president’s comments on the NFL, Brokaw claimed that Trump, and some people on the right, want “to destroy the prevailing culture in this country,” adding “This is a crisis point for this country.” Really? Tom. Really?

WORD FROM ANOTHER WACKO – Liberal activist Naomi Klein is blaming oil and coal companies for the devastation of Hurricane’s Harvey and Irma and has called for their prosecution for climate denial. “You know,” she said, “These are not just natural disasters. These are disasters that have become unnatural, that have become unnaturally catastrophic, because of the impacts of climate change, but also because of deregulation” – and get ready for this – “because of inequality, of racial injustice.” (Media Research Center)

TRUMP CLEANS A “SWAMPER” FROM HIS CABINET – Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price represented what Donald Trump saw wrong in the Washington D.C. swamp during the campaign – individuals who spent taxpayer money like it was their own. In Price’s case, he chalked up $1 million in private air travel in less than nine months. President Trump was not happy, and called for Price’s resignation Friday. There are those who speculate Trump’s dissatisfaction with Price was linked to his inability to pass the repeal and replacement of ObamaCare. Maybe. Regardless, he’s gone.

BETTER LATE THAN NEVER, I GUESS – Many conservatives criticized the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African-American History and Culture for snubbing Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas at its opening last year. At the same time, the museum devoted considerable space to the Black Panthers, hip hop, the Black Lives Matter movement and even a pin reading, “I Believe Anita Hill.”

Now, as the museum celebrates its first anniversary, Thomas will finally be honored, but at the same time, the museum has accepted gear worn by Colin Kaepernick, who refused to stand for the national anthem. Believe it.