Posts tagged ‘Unemployment’

April 30, 2013

Making Clark County Government Better

by lewwaters

CCBGClark County Washington sits in an awkward position at the southern most point of Washington State where the Columbia River separates the state from its Southern Neighbor, Oregon.

Positioned where we are, Washington State often ignores us, except of course when the time comes to want taxes, and Oregon treats us as their bedroom, the hicks to north they like to poke fun at.

All too often our elected officials, seeing Portland, Oregon as that “economic powerhouse” south of us, cater to the whims of Oregon over the desires of Clark County citizens.

February 12, 2013

Obama’s SOTU or SNAFU?

by lewwaters

obama-mussolini-poseOnce again we find ourselves preparing to have our ears tickled by Barack Obama as he speaks before both houses of congress and the nation to give the annual ‘State of the Union’ speech where he undoubtedly will speak of how well the country is doing under his tutelage and how well off citizens are, whether we actually are or not.

He is expected to cover “his plans to create jobs, tackle gun violence, and pass comprehensive immigration reform” as Nancy Pelosi, unarguably one of the worst Speakers of the House in our history, famously known for stating “we have to pass the bill so you can find out what is in it” regarding Obama’s signature ‘Obamacare’ legislation, a direct contradiction of Obama’s campaign promise of a transparent government.

She also makes mention in this same email seeking support for Obama of this “ambitious agenda.”

July 16, 2012

Representing Constituent Views Earns Commissioner Mielke the Columbian’s Scorn

by lewwaters

Predictable, the Columbian, the unofficial daily newsletter of the Democrat Party in Clark County has now endorsed a straight Democrat ticket in the Primary Election coming in August. Oh, they’ll claim they endorsed a “Republican” with Marc Boldt, who left his conservative base in the dust long ago to embrace the Liberal Democrat values, but the release of their endorsement for Democrats Joe Tanner and Ron Barca completes the picture of desiring a one party rule on the Clark County Commission.

Ever since Tom Mielke, a Vietnam Veteran Decorated for Combat Valor when he served with the 82nd Airborne in Vietnam, won a narrow victory over Democrat Pam Brokaw in 2008, the lackeys at the Columbian have written everything negative about the man they could find. Unlike Marc Boldt, Mielke votes the conservative view as the conservatives who elected him would expect.

Trying to look out for the well-being of taxpayers, keeping taxes reasonable, questioning the boondoggle CRC and ramming Portland’s light rail down Clark County Citizen’s throats against our will and opposing construction of $24 Million baseball stadium to house a losing minor league team earns Mielke the label of the “No guy” from the Columbian.

In the past 4 years, you will be hard pressed to find a kind word about the man in the pages of the Columbian.

July 4, 2012

The Shame of America, Homeless Veterans

by lewwaters

Once again, we celebrate our Independence from Britain over 200 years ago. We will enjoy backyard barbecues, community picnics, fireworks displays or just a pleasant time enjoying friends and family, many people receiving the day off from work. We’ll hear speeches and thanks given out for why we are a free country, those few throughout our history who have stood in the fire to fight for and protect our freedoms.

Tomorrow, everything will return to normal, though. Forgotten by all too many will be the fleeting words of praise given to Veterans of all past wars as people return to business as usual and Veterans will be shoved off into the back corners of people’s minds until the next time a holiday rolls around and some politician feels they need to score a few points.

All too many really don’t care very much about the sacrifices of our Veterans and this can be readily seen in politicians and our media, who sees Veterans as little more than props to score points against an opponent or to sell newspapers or build ratings by flashy reports.

We claim deep respect and admiration for our Veterans and Military and many individuals actually do hold deep respect for them. But, all too many do not. To many we are little more than tools to promote their agenda. To others, we are damaged and something to be fearful of, afraid we may “go off” at any time.

I covered part of this years ago in the posts Veterans, Warriors and Heroes, not Victims and America’s Veterans, A Better Breed.

July 1, 2012

Liz Pike, Ready to Restore Washington State

by lewwaters

The 18th Legislative District has been a strong Republican district for a long time. It is noted for electing strong conservative Republicans like Joe Zarelli, Ann Rivers and Ed Orcutt.

The recent redistricting saw Democrats licking their chops in hopes they might gain a foothold with Orcutt being districted out. Enter Liz Pike, a long time Republican who wants to see the 18th remain in the GOP’s hands and is facing two before unheard of Democrats, David Shehorn, retired computer systems worker and Ryan Gompertz, barely out of High School and studying history and economics at UW.

Neither Democrat has any political experience to speak of other than volunteer work with the party.

Liz Pike, on the other hand, comes with the experience of running for and winning an election to serve the community on the Camas City Council, as well as owning her own small business, Pike Advertising Agency.

She currently serves as Political Affairs Director for the Building Industry Association of Clark County as well and true to her roots growing up on a Clark County Dairy Farm, operates Shangri-La Farm, a small scale sustainable farm in Fern Prairie. She also was a volunteer co-organizer for the Washougal Farmers’ Market as well as an avid promoter of the “buy local, slow food” movement and more.

February 27, 2012

Have I Ever Been In Her Shoes?

by lewwaters

Far left Moveon.org asks, “Have you ever been in her shoes? Watch:”

I’m not a huge fan of Mitt Romney, so this is not in support of or an endorsement, but yes, as a matter of fact I have been in her shoes. After 20 years at a Chrysler dealer and at age 61, I found myself unemployed in an area with 15% unemployment when the White House helped compile of a list of 789 Chrysler dealers to have their franchises yanked, including some very profitable ones.

Should I feel pleased this young lady feels so good about saving her ass on the backs of taxpayers while hundreds of thousands of the rest of us were thrown out of work?

Maybe she needs to look at the real world.

January 26, 2012

Obama’s Job Creation Lie

by lewwaters

Looking around at some newspapers from across the country, I stumbled upon the following ad at the Orlando Sentinel.

I’m sure Democrats believe this chart and want others to. But, going to the very source the Obama campaign claims to use we find.

If you note, when Democrats were swept into congressional power in January 2007, in order to correct an “unbearable” unemployment rate, the rate of unemployment was 4.7%. After two years of their “fixing” things under the leadership of then House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, unemployment grew to 7.8% when Obama was inaugurated in January 2009.

December 2, 2011

Illusory Unemployment Drop Celebrated, While Real Job Growth Remains Blocked

by lewwaters

This holiday season is bringing more of the same bad news that millions of jobless workers heard last year… American workers are weathering the effects of an economy where there is only one job for every three individuals searching for a job.

No, the above isn’t addressing our current economic quagmire, it is two sentences contained in the first paragraph of a letter sent to former President George W. Bush by Nancy Pelosi, House Democratic Leader and Tom Daschle, Senate Democratic Leader in November 2003 complaining about what they felt was high unemployment then and urging more unemployment funding to combat it.

After suffering the worst terrorist attack in history, an attack right in the heart of our financial district and lingering effects of a recession that began shortly after taking office, unemployment had peaked at 6.3% in June 2003 and was dropping; reaching 5.8% in the very month the letter was written.

Democrats were complaining how unacceptable such unemployment numbers were as we heading into the 2004 election season.

Contrast that now as we see celebratory headlines like: Unemployment rate falls to 8.6 percent, lowest in 2½ years, with good signs for small business

Through the first two years of the Obama administration, Democrats had full and complete control of the government to implement the very policies they called for back in 2003. Unemployment, after dipping to 4.4% during the Bush administration, was setting at 7.8% when Obama took office, after two years of Democrats seizing control of both houses of congress in the 2006 election.

October 16, 2011

Occupy A Paycheck

by lewwaters

We have all been seeing in the news about Occupy Wall Street, Occupy Portland, and Occupy Denver; Occupy everything except a bar of soap for some. The common theme we hear is that there are no jobs, corporate greed is holding back on jobs, the rich are stingy and not “paying their fair share” in taxes. The claim is that 1% holds all of the wealth and that 99% apparently do not, leading one to believe that 99% of the country is broke, out of work and dying of hunger.

According to the National Taxpayers Union, the so called rich already pays a disproportionate amount of income taxes and we also know that 47% of lower wage earners pays no income taxes.

Beyond taxes, as I said above, corporations are accused of being greedy, not wanting to hire people while they hold massive amounts of profits, yadda, yadda, yadda. That too is not quite accurate as there are corporations ready, willing and all too able to hire up to one million workers and it is the government blocking the access to those jobs.

September 15, 2011

DEMOCRATS; STOP FOCUSING ON JOBS, PLEASE!

by lewwaters

After Tuesday’s stunning defeat for Democrats in New York’s 9th district, where the Democrats have held the seat for nearly a century, the Democrat spin machine kicked into gear with several different excuses to deny that it was a repudiation of Obama’s poor leadership capabilities.

I was particularly struck by the comment from DNC Chair and Florida’s Representative, Debbie Wasserman Schultz who said the race had been run under “unusual circumstances,” and she asserted the public mood will change “when we begin to focus on jobs rather than spending cuts.”

It is quite a remarkable thing to hear a Democrat say “when we begin to focus on jobs” as I am under the impression that jobs has been their primary call since losing to George W. Bush in the 2000 presidential election.

Bush came to office as a recession was growing and then the nation was blind-sided with the worst terrorist attack in history, throwing the economy in uncertainty. In spite of that, a March 8, 2002 CNN Money headline informed us, Unemployment drops to 5.5%, Jobless rate falls unexpectedly as nation begins to add jobs again.

September 12, 2011

Obama’s New and Improved Jobs Plan, Still Misses the Mark

by lewwaters

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over, but expecting a different result. In a nutshell, that is how the new & improved jobs plan Barack Obama repeatedly told congress “you should pass right away” is best summed up. Same old, same old that plunges us deeper in debt, taxes the so called rich and places more burdens on business, which will cost us jobs, not create them.

Shortly after being coronated as king in 2009, in the minds of many liberals, Obama rolled out his multi-Billion dollar “stimulus” to spur job growth with the warning of it had to be passed to keep unemployment below 8% in America. Within months, we exceeded 10% unemployment and have remained above an 8% rate ever since, slightly above 9% at this time.

Oh, we’re told how well that one worked and saved jobs. DNC chair, transplanted Florida Democrat Debbie Wasserman Schultz saying, “[The] mantra that the Recovery (stimulus) Act did not work is such baloney,” adding in regards to the new & improved plan, “the plan would be paid for by ‘closing corporate loopholes,’ bringing jobs back to the U.S., and by raising taxes on the ‘wealthy and more fortunate’.”

The very acts that sent American jobs overseas in the first place!

August 25, 2011

Washington State Jobs! What to Believe?

by lewwaters

Many people have come to not trust what they read and see in the media. Beyond the obvious bias of many media sources, contradicting articles published calls the media’s reliability into question.

Case in point, the Columbian on August 23, 2011 published an article headlined, “Clark County job market remains stagnant in JulyRevised unemployment rate expected to be about 13 percent.

That ties in well with their article we saw August 16, 2011, “More living with less incomeCounty households earning under $35,000 up 24% as job picture stays bleak

We all know how bad economic conditions have been and remain in Clark County, so maybe you can imagine my surprise to see the headline today, August 25, 2011 of, “State’s job openings at three-year high

Is the rest of the state better off? Or, is someone trying to put lipstick on a pig?

Which way is it? It can’t be both.

June 22, 2011

Portland’s Homeless Rate Increasing

by lewwaters

From KGW:

“The latest numbers are in. Portland’s homeless problem is worsening, despite tens and tens of millions dollars spent on the problem over the last five years.”

“The most recent count shows homelessness is up seven percent overall. There are now more than 1,700 people sleeping on the streets and about 1,000 more sleeping in shelters and low-rent or subsidized motels.”

Portland Housing Commissioner Nick Fish says, “the city must stay the course.”

“We know what the long-term solution is: homes with services for people that need it. It’s expensive but we get great outcomes and it’s humane, pragmatic and I think it’s the right thing to do.”

See also: A 10 Year Plan to end homelessness in the City of Portland and Multnomah County by 2015

From CBS, July 2009:

If you pay people not to work and tax them when they do, don’t be surprised if you get unemployment.” Milton Friedman

May 8, 2011

Oil Companies. Tax Cheats or Boogieman?

by lewwaters

In this troubling economic times, the government, instead of admitting their own malfeasance and years of mismanagement by both parties, and continuing their assault on business, businesses that create millions of decent wage jobs, have began calling for an end to Oil Company Subsidies.

Right away, with the crafty and misleading use of the word “subsidy,” that conjures visions of cash payments from the government to the oil companies, a false impression is created. The oil companies receive no payment from the government, but like other companies, receive some tax breaks to recoup some expenses and in turn, create or maintain more jobs.

Replying to Obama’s calls to “eliminate unwarranted tax breaks for the oil and gas industry and use the dollars to invest in clean energy,” Republican Speaker of the House, John Boehner said that cutting the subsidies to oil companies is “certainly something we should be looking at,” adding, “We are in a time when the federal government’s short on revenues. We need to control spending, but we need to have revenues to get the government moving. They ought to be paying their fair share.”

“Paying their fair share?”

Oil giant ExxonMobil is often the target of government with claims of they paid no taxes in 2009, a claim even Politifact declares FALSE!

March 11, 2011

Republican Governor Saves 1,500 Union Jobs: Democrats Cry Foul!

by lewwaters

After Wisconsin’s legislature succeeded in passing their ‘budget repair bill,’ Governor, Scott Walker has rescinded some 1,500 lay-off notices that had been sent out to state union workers in the state. Rescinding the notices, Governor Walker issued a notice saying,

“The Legislature helped us save 1,500 middle-class jobs by moving forward this week with the budget repair. The state will now be able to realize $30 million in savings to balance the budget and allow 1,500 state employees to keep their jobs. The reforms contained in this legislation, which require modest health care and pension contributions from all public employees, will help put Wisconsin on a path to fiscal sustainability.” 

“While tough budget choices certainly still lie ahead, both state and local units of government will not have to do any mass layoffs or direct service reductions because of the reforms contained in the budget repair bill. Moving forward the hardworking, professional public sector employees who show up to work every day and do an excellent job will help ensure Wisconsin has a business climate that allows the private sector to create 250,000 new jobs.”

For weeks now we have heard how “anti-union,” “mean-spirited,” “cold hearted” Governor Walker is, adding rhetoric to rhetoric against the Governor and the newly elected Republican legislature majority.

January 23, 2011

The State of the… Oh Hell, Here We Go Again

by lewwaters

Once again the nation will be focused on what we often laughingly refer to as “the State of the Union” where the president stands before both houses of congress and the nation and tells us how the country is doing. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see we aren’t doing too well.

As we often said in the Army, Situation normal, all ‘fouled’ up!”

People have very little confidence in anything currently. The unemployed are not confident of returning to work. The employed do not feel secure in their jobs. Business owners are not confident of making even slim profits, not knowing what is coming next as politicians continue to “fix” things not actually broken on their backs.

Glib speeches by slick politicians and manufactured applause are not all that is needed currently. A leader is what we need. A leader that can see with so many currently suffering, flying around the world and taking lavish vacations every few weeks, hosting gala dinner parties and asking for more and more from the very ones suffering, does not instill confidence, it erodes it.

January 17, 2011

Compensation Due Exonerated Inmates?

by lewwaters

The wheels of justice are slow moving and at times not moving at all, it seems. But by and large they do roll and even when a wrong was committed, such as convicting innocent people, correction of that wrong does happen.

I once knew an Army JAG (Judge Advocate General) Officer, an attorney, who told me he was taught in Law School, “It is better that 10 guilty go free than 1 innocent be convicted.” Unfortunately, innocent people are convicted, due to misidentification; wrongful recollection of victims and witnesses, overly zealous prosecutors, inept defense counsel, the list is almost endless.

We don’t have a perfect justice system, but we strive to be just and correct wrongs once discovered.

Such was the case with two convicted men in 1993 of the rape of a La Center woman, exonerated by DNA evidence last year in July. The improvements in DNA Evidence showed that neither man was responsible for the crime and charges were dropped, they were set free.

Due to no fault of their own, they also were exonerated in the midst of one of the worst economic downturns in our countries history. The reasons why the economy is so bad are debated with fingers pointing everywhere, but the fact remains, their freedom came at a time the country is deeply struggling and many areas are facing double digit unemployment.

December 14, 2010

Note to Clark County Commissioners: We Are Not Your Personal ATM Machine

by lewwaters

Just one week after deciding to raise property taxes 1% for the county general fund, Clark County Commissioners’ will see their salaries go up from $98,224 to $100,224.

Additionally, each will receive $600 a month car allowance, an increase from $500 a month for Commissioners Boldt and Mielke and $400 a month for Stuart, who was just reelected.

Clark County’s jobless rate remains at 13.1% while county employees have seen a wage freeze and continue to contribute nothing towards their health insurance, which cost taxpayers $26 Million for premiums in 2010.

Commissioner Stuart defended the increase saying they did “give up the mileage reimbursement and are saving money by not replacing a policy analyst who resigned this fall.” “We are doing more work,” Stuart said.

Read more HERE and HERE.

December 5, 2010

Raising Clark County Property Taxes at this Time is a Very Bad Idea

by lewwaters

Here we go again. With a 13% unemployment rate in Clark County, our illustrious county commissioners, allegedly with a Republican majority, are pondering whether or not to raise property taxes on economically repressed Clark County.

A Sunday Columbian article informs us, after seemingly scolding taxpayers for voting in limitations on property tax increases in the past, “Property taxes are the single largest source of revenue for local government.

I believe most homeowners realize that already.

They also inform us, “In a 2009 national survey of 2,002 adults by Harris Interactive for the Tax Foundation, on the subject of the fairness of state and local taxes, property taxes ranked behind the gas tax as ‘the least fair’.

Of course, the ‘lovely’ Stephanie Rice first tells us, “If Clark County commissioners, after four public hearings on the 2011-12 budget, decide this week they need to raise the county’s property tax levy 1 percent, take heart and seek perspective,” in a futile attempt to make us “feel better” about yet another tax increase placed upon us by also telling us, “Property taxes in Clark County fall in the middle among 792 U.S. counties ranked by the Tax Foundation, a nonpartisan research group in Washington, D.C.

NOTE: A Monday, Dec. 6, 2010 REWRITE of the above quoted article eliminated much of the above quote.

What I don’t see mentioned in the perky Ms. Rice’s article is, when it comes to our 13% unemployment rate, we are well above that middle in similar rankings nationwide.

December 3, 2010

Obama Reverses on Offshore Drilling Again, Tens of Thousands of Jobs Evaporate

by lewwaters

Just days after the astonishing admission by Global Warming Guru Al Gore that his early support of ethanol was based up his desire to gain votes, not scientific evidence, we again see a prominent member of the Democratic Party issue yet another job killing decision as the country remains mired deep in an economic morass.

Barack Obama, supposedly leading our country as president, an office assumed to be held by those who place the safety and well-being of the country over special interests or personal gain has once again flip flopped on an earlier decision to lift the ban on off shore exploration and drilling of our own energy resources. Undoubtedly, the move not only keeps our country heavily dependent upon foreign oil sources that are often hostile to us, but the potential tens of thousands of jobs, many that will be needed for our country to ever recover from this deep, deep recession will no longer be created.

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