Published on Dec 6, 2013
” Yesterday, Naomi Brockwell and I attended a demonstration demanding that fast-food restaurants boost their minimum wage to $15 per hour, or a little more than double the current federal minimum wage. The strike, which was led by a group called Fast Food Forward that’s affiliated with the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), was one of more than a 100 similar demonstrations held in cities across the country.
The New York demonstration had about 150 people, but the number of actual fast food employees participating in the strike was small. It was business as usual at every restaurant we dropped by yesterday morning and, at a McDonald’s restaurant on 23rd Street and Madison Avenue in Manhattan, employees behind the counter said they had heard nothing about a strike.
We caught up with the protesters in front of a Wendy’s in downtown Brooklyn, where the crowd consisted of union organizers, fast-food workers, and their sympathizers. An estimated one-third of the demonstrators were fast-food employees, meaning that less than one-tenth of 1 percent of New York City’s 57,000 fast-food workforce participated in the strike.
The group was traveling from one fast-food restaurant to another, before winding up at Foley Square in Manhattan around 1pm.
Multiple strikers told us they had received compensation through a union strike fund to appear, but declined to say the amount they were paid.
Artificially doubling wages to $15 an hour would change many things in the fast food industry, including the easy path it provides for low-skilled employees to break into the labor market. Substantially higher wages would mean that existing employees would be less apt to look for other positions, and senior staffers would be more inclined to hog shift hours. Franchisees would likely move more aggressively to replace human service workers with automated cash registers, which is already happening in European McDonald’s. Evidence of how artificially boosting wages destroys opportunities for entry level workers was best documented in a 2006 study by economists David Neumark and William Wascher, which was updated in 2013.
In interviews, several striking workers described how it had been relatively easy for them to get a job in fast-food service. Shenita Simon, who works as a shift supervisor at KFC, told us that she doesn’t know where else she would have been able to find a position, because fast food is the only industry that “will allow you to have minimum education.” Isaac Wallace, a Burger King employee, described how he was able to get his job immediately after moving to New York from Jamaica by simply walking into a Burger King in Brooklyn and approaching the manager.
Once the strike moved to Foley Square, organizers from Fast Food Forward began obstructing our efforts to talk with protesters.
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Produced by Jim Epstein and hosted by Naomi Brockwell.”
” While today’s municipal bankruptcy news focuses on Detroit, where a judge has just ruled the city can proceed with its bankruptcy filing, tonight a small California city holds a council meeting to try to avoid the same fate.
Desert Hot Springs isn’t on the national radar, but its situation is hardly unique. With only 27,000 residents and only 55 full-time city employees, Desert Hot Springs lacks the financial heft that allows larger cities – think Los Angeles – to put off their day of reckoning.”
” The average full-time employee working for the city of Desert Hot Springs earned direct pay plus employer paid benefits during 2011 of $144,329. The average public safety employee working for Desert Hot Springs earned direct pay plus employer paid benefits during 2011 of $164,621.
Public sector union spokespersons often complain that “politicians are trying to balance the budget on the backs of working people.” Set aside for a moment the fact that “working people” means “unionized government employees” who, in the case of Desert Hot Springs, are making more per year than the average home costs in that city. Can Desert Hot Springs balance their budget if their “councilmen also eye pay, benefits,” and could actually do anything about it?”
” Token Libertarian Girl crushes some of the bigger myths about liberty and human nature in this very funny four-minute video.
Ms Borowsky is a charming young lady who writes for Townhall and has a very engaging Youtube channel which produces some very enlightening videos on liberty , the Constitution and all things freedom related . In this effort she attempts to answer some of the most commonly raised questions pertaining to a theoretical Libertarian society . Do you know the difference between an anarchist and a minarchist ? Are libertarians Republicans ? Are libertarians naive to human nature ? Watch the video and see for yourself .
” The California Air Resources Board is now embarking on a program that would help poor people buy energy-efficient vehicles. In one scenario posed by the agency, a “voucher” might even pay the full price for a Nissan Leaf, an electric car with an MSRP above $21,000, or for used cars with lower price tags.”
The list of “entitlements” grows by the day … food , housing , education , medical care and now California is floating the idea that people have a “right” to a car . Where does it end ? Or is that the point ? It doesn’t end until the incentive to provide for one’s self is banished once and for all , thus insuring government dependence in perpetuity . There is already ample evidence on how well that works out . Just look at all the “help” the State has provided the black community over the past two generations .
” In a staff report released on Nov. 19, the agency analyzes its Enhanced Fleet Modernization Program authorized in 2007. Funded by a $1 surcharge on vehicle registrations, the $30-million-a-year program is essentially a “cash for clunkers” deal. It provides motorists with $1,000 to $1,500 to retire their high-polluting vehicles.”
Given the fact that the original “Cash For Clunkers” program from the feds worked out so well it’s no surprise that the moonbats that rule California would decide to try to emulate that success . In the name of the environment , of course .
(Mark) “ Faber, editor and publisher of The Gloom, Boom & Doom Report, told CNBC on Friday he believes a “massive speculative bubble” has encroached on everything from stocks and bonds to bitcoin and farmland. He attributed the vast bubble to “symptoms of excess liquidity.”
Faber said the markets, which have reached record highs, could still rise before the bubble bursts, if stimulus programs such as the Federal Reserve’s massive monthly bond purchases and super-low interest rates continue.
” Now can the market go up another 20 percent before it tumbles?” Faber said on“Squawk Box”. “Yeah, it can go up even more, if you print money.”
” The Energy Department has sold off its $192 million loan guarantee to Fisker Automotive to Chinese billionaire Richard Li for $25 million — the biggest taxpayer loss on a green loan since the failure of Solyndra.
The Energy Department will announce the “selling of the promissory note” to Hybrid Tech, which is owned by Chinese billionaire Richard Li, according to sources familiar with the sale. The DOE sold the loan to Li for $25 million after lending the financially troubled green automaker a total of $192 million since 2009. …
Including the $25 million loan sale, the DOE has recovered only $53 million of the original $192 million disbursed — netting taxpayers a $139 million loss.”
Obama’s actions with the “green tech” industries , bribes , subsidies , grants , loans and kickbacks would have been enough all by themselves to have impeached any other president , Republican at least , if we had a truly independent media . The depths of media depravity and dishonesty over the past six years in support of this shameful regime is difficult to grasp .
Brought to you by the Washington Free Beacon
” A new GAO report recommends that Congress end the SPOT program, which attempts to catch terrorists by suspicious behaviors they may exhibit at airport checkpoints. The Transportation Security Administration currently spends more than $200 million a year on the Screening of Passengers by Observation Techniques program, even though there has been criticism from the start that there is no solid science behind it.
Here are observations about SPOT from my new Cato study on the TSA to be released next Tuesday:
The SPOT program illustrates the problems with top-down federal control over aviation security. ”
The Federal government , through the auspices of the TSA has wasted over a billion dollars in the past six years on a program that trains the TSA employees to “visually determine” likely terror suspects . When you are through laughing at the TSA’s well-publicized attempts at “profiling” potential terrorists (think nuns , grannies & 5 Year-olds) , consider the waste of time , money , liberty and human dignity that this six year fiasco represents.
” The United States in August and September began considering in earnest whether or not to become militarily involved in Syria. There are many tough and contentious questions about that decision, but one fact is undeniable: It would be expensive.
In a 2010 paper, Stephen Daggett of the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service estimated the costs of all major U.S. wars expressed in contemporary dollars, from the American Revolution through the current conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. With the caveat that comparing war costs over a 230-year period is “inherently problematic” because the definition of war has varied and official numbers have included and measured different things over time, and also “because of the difficulties in comparing prices from one vastly different era to another,” Daggett nonetheless concludes that the trend is clear: Wars aren’t cheap.
According to his estimates, the American Revolution cost $2.4 billion (all numbers are in constant FY2011 dollars), World War I cost $334 billion, World War II cost $4.1 trillion, and the Iraq and Afghanistan wars combined have cost around $1.1 trillion and growing.
The price tag on the proposed intervention in Syria is unclear. According to a Congressional Research Service report published in September, “the cost of any military intervention could range widely depending on the type and length of U.S. military actions, the participation of U.S. allies, and Syrian and Syrian-allied responses.” Estimates range from $500 million initially to train, advise, and assist opposition forces in a safe area outside Syria, to as much as $12 billion dollars a year to use military force to establish either a no-fly zone that would prevent the regime from using its aircraft or a buffer zone to protect border areas next to Turkey or Jordan.
If history is any guide we can expect that direct military spending will be grossly underestimated.”
Grossly underestimated indeed … as with the costs of any government action.
Francis Bacon Painting Sells For $142 Million
Published on Nov 15, 2013
” Senator David Vitter asks Fed Chair nominee Janet Yellen if she supports Audit the Fed (S.209) at her confirmation hearing in front of the Senate Banking Committee on November 14, 2013.”
You knew what her answer would be didn’t you ? We’re sure Senator Vitter knew as well and that was all the more reason to pose the question in a public forum and have it on record for all to see .
We have no particular knowledge of whether these discounts are for real or not but , at risk of being accused of internet rumor-mongering , we thought we would pass the list along for our reader’s comments and possible benefit.The grocery store discounts have the ring of truth to them as our regional chain offers 10% off on Wednesdays to those over 55 . Some of the retail and accommodations offers seem a bit generous but perhaps some our readers have firsthand experiences they might share . In any event , it never hurts to ask .
We did find links to numerous websites that specialize in informing people over the age of 50 of the many many discounts available that are not necessarily well publicized . Some of them include discounts on prescription drugs , Amazon movie rentals and a host of other potential savings . Kind of a modern day Green Stamps program . Just print your coupons and pocket your savings . Every little bit helps in these harsh economic times .
” As I was waiting in line behind an older gentleman at Wendy’s recently,I heard him ask for his senior discount. The girl at the register apologized and
charged him less. When I asked the man what the discount was, he told me that
seniors over age 55 …get 10% off everything on the menu, every day. (But you need to ASK for your discount.)
Being of ‘that’ age myself, I figured I might as well ask for the discount too.
this incident prompted me to do some research, and I came across a list of restaurants, supermarkets, department stores, travel deals and other types of offers giving various discounts with different age requirements. I was actually surprised to see how many there are and howsome of them start at the young age of 50 .
This list may not only be useful for you, but for your friends and family too.
Dunkin Donuts gives free coffee to people over 55 .
If you’re paying for a cup every day, you might want to start getting it for FREE.
YOU must ASK for your discount !”
Applebee’s: 15% off with Golden Apple Card (60+)
Arby’s: 10% off ( 55 +)
Ben & Jerry’s: 10% off (60+)
Bennigan’s: discount varies by location (60+)
Bob’s Big Boy: discount varies by location (60+)
Boston Market: 10% off (65+)
Burger King: 10% off (60+)
Chick-Fil-A: 10% off or free small drink or coffee ( 55+)
Chili’s: 10% off ( 55+)
CiCi’s Pizza: 10% off (60+)
Denny’s: 10% off, 20% off for AARP members ( 55 +)
Dunkin’ Donuts: 10% off or free coffee ( 55+)
Einstein’s Bagels: 10% off baker’s dozen of bagels (60+)
Fuddrucker’s: 10% off any senior platter ( 55+)
Gatti’s Pizza: 10% off (60+)
Golden Corral: 10% off (60+)
Hardee’s: $0.33 beverages everyday (65+)
IHOP: 10% off ( 55+)
Jack in the Box: up to 20% off ( 55+)
KFC: free small drink with any meal ( 55+)
Krispy Kreme: 10% off ( 50+)
Long John Silver’s: various discounts at locations ( 55+)
McDonald’s: discounts on coffee everyday ( 55+)
Mrs. Fields: 10% off at participating locations (60+)
Shoney’s: 10% off
Sonic: 10% off or free beverage (60+)
Steak ‘n Shake: 10% off every Monday & Tuesday ( 50+)
Subway: 10% off (60+)
Sweet Tomatoes: 10% off (62+)
Taco Bell : 5% off; free beverages for seniors (65+)
TCBY: 10% off ( 55+)
Tea Room Cafe: 10% off ( 50+)
Village Inn: 10% off (60+)
Waffle House: 10% off every Monday (60+)
Wendy’s: 10% off ( 55 +)
Whataburger: 10% off (62+)
White Castle: 10% off (62+) This is for me … if I ever see one again.
RETAIL & APPAREL :
Banana Republic: 30% off ( 50 +)
Bealls: 20% off first Tuesday of each month ( 50 +)
Belk’s: 15% off first Tuesday of every month ( 55 +)
Big Lots: 30% off
Bon-Ton Department Stores: 15% off on senior discount days ( 55 +)
C.J. Banks: 10% off every Wednesday (50+)
Clarks : 10% off (62+)
Dress Barn: 20% off ( 55+)
Goodwill: 10% off one day a week (date varies by location)
Hallmark: 10% off one day a week (date varies by location)
Kmart: 40% off (Wednesdays only) ( 50+)
Kohl’s: 15% off (60+)Modell’s Sporting Goods: 30% off
Rite Aid: 10% off on Tuesdays & 10% off prescriptions
Ross Stores: 10% off every Tuesday ( 55+)
The Salvation Army Thrift Stores: up to 50% off ( 55+)
Stein Mart: 20% off red dot/clearance items first Monday of every month ( 55 +)
Albertson’s: 10% off first Wednesday of each month ( 55 +)
American Discount Stores: 10% off every Monday ( 50 +)
Compare Foods Supermarket: 10% off every Wednesday (60+)
DeCicco Family Markets: 5% off every Wednesday (60+)
Food Lion: 6% off every Monday (60+)
Fry’s Supermarket: free Fry’s VIP Club Membership & 10% off every Monday ( 55 +)
Great Valu Food Store: 5% off every Tuesday (60+)
Gristedes Supermarket: 10% off every Tuesday (60+)
Harris Teeter: 5% off every Tuesday (60+)
Hy-Vee: 5% off one day a week (date varies by location)
Kroger: 10% off (date varies by location)
Morton Williams Supermarket: 5% off every Tuesday (60+)
The Plant Shed: 10% off every Tuesday ( 50 +)
Publix: 15% off every Wednesday ( 55 +)
Rogers Marketplace: 5% off every Thursday (60+)
Uncle Guiseppe’s Marketplace: 15% off (62+)
Alaska Airlines: 50% off (65+)
American Airlines: various discounts for 50% off non-peak periods (Tuesdays – Thursdays) (62+)and up (call before booking for discount)
Continental Airlines: no initiation fee for Continental Presidents Club & special fares for select destinations
Southwest Airlines: various discounts for ages 65 and up (call before booking for discount)
United Airlines: various discounts for ages 65 and up (call before booking for discount)
U.S. Airways: various discounts for ages 65 and up (call before booking for discount)
Amtrak: 15% off (62+)
Greyhound: 15% off (62+)
Trailways Transportation System: various discounts for ages 50+
Alamo Car Rental: up to 25% off for AARP members
Avis: up to 25% off for AARP members
Budget Rental Cars: 40% off; up to 50% off for AARP members ( 50+)
Dollar Rent-A-Car: 10% off ( 50+) Enterprise Rent-A-Car: 5% off for AARP members Hertz: up to 25% off for AARP members
National Rent-A-Car: up to 30% off for AARP members
Holiday Inn: 20-40% off depending on location (62+)
Best Western: 40% off (55+)
Cambria Suites: 20%-30% off (60+)
Waldorf Astoria – NYC $5,000 off nightly rate for Presidential Suite (55 +)
Clarion Motels: 20%-30% off (60+)
Comfort Inn: 20%-30% off (60+)
Comfort Suites: 20%-30% off (60+)
Econo Lodge: 40% off (60+)
Hampton Inns & Suites: 40% off when booked 72 hours in advance
Hyatt Hotels: 25%-50% off (62+)
InterContinental Hotels Group: various discounts at all hotels (65+)
Mainstay Suites: 10% off with Mature Traveler’s Discount (50+); 20%-30% off (60+)
Marriott Hotels: 25% off (62+)
Motel 6: Stay Free Sunday nights (60+)
Myrtle Beach Resort: 30% off ( 55 +)
Quality Inn: 40%-50% off (60+)
Rodeway Inn: 20%-30% off (60+)
Sleep Inn: 40% off (60+)
ACTIVITIES & ENTERTAINMENT ;:
AMC Theaters: up to 30% off ( 55 +)
Bally Total Fitness: $100 off memberships (62+)
Busch Gardens Tampa, FL: $13 off one-day tickets ( 50 +)
Carmike Cinemas: 35% off (65+)
Cinemark/Century Theaters: up to 35% off
Massage Envy – NYC 20% off all “Happy Endings” (62 +)
U.S. National Parks: $10 lifetime pass; 50% off additional services including camping (62+)
Regal Cinemas: 50% off Ripley’s Believe it or Not: @ off one-day ticket ( 55 +)
SeaWorld, Orlando , FL : $3 off one-day tickets ( 50 +)
CELL PHONE DISCOUNTS :
AT&T: Special Senior Nation 200 Plan $19.99/month (65+)
Jitterbug: $10/month cell phone service ( 50 +)
Verizon Wireless: Verizon Nationwide 65 Plus Plan $29.99/month (65+).
Great Clips: $8 off hair cuts (60+)
Supercuts: $8 off haircuts (60+)
NOW, go out there and claim your discounts – - and remember — YOU must ASK for discount —- no ask, no discount.
I Know everyone knows someone over 50 please pass the one on!!!!!
Whether all of these terms and percentages are correct or not , the fact is that most large businesses offer some discount or other to senior citizens and it is worth a little time to explore the policies of the companies that you tend to shop at . There is no doubt that there are substantial savings there for the taking .
” The PlayStation 4, aka the PS4, is set to launch on Nov. 15, and Sony is in quite the celebratory mood. In addition to daily PS4, game footage and feature updates, the company has announced a full list of participating midnight launch stores with special events planned for New York City and San Francisco.
According to Sony, Best Buy stores across America will participate in PS4 midnight launch events. The electronics retail giant set up a dedicated page for the event.
Best Buy advises individuals to show up early. It will process pre-orders and have a limited supply of PS4s available to purchase. According to a statement from Best Buy, most of their stores “will create two separate lines: one for pre-order customers and one for customers looking to purchase a console from the available limited quantities. Some stores may need to operate differently; however, all of our stores will be utilizing signage to manage their lines along with employee assistance to ensure everyone is aware of the process throughout the day. Stores will begin processing pre-order customers prior to processing any customers looking to purchase a console.”
” A phenomena of the Obama economy is that labor force participation rates have been declining. In October 2013, a staggering 1 million people dropped out of the labor force. according to the St. Louis Federal Reserve data (above). It wasn’t due to the government shutdown, because they were still counted as employed in the data. The St. Louis Federal Reserve seems totally stumped at the what is happening in the U.S. economy.
Has it occurred to the brilliant “economists” at the St. Louis Federal Reserve that key provisions of Obama Care went into effect October 1? Have they considered the impact of Obama Care and zero percent interest rates on working and saving behavior?
Several theories abound, anything from a rise in stay at home mothers (reverse feminism), more students staying in school, and other hypothesis. However, what no one at the Federal Reserve wants to admit is this: John Galtism is alive and well in the U.S. economy. They are measuring the John Galt effect.
John Galt was a figure in the Ayn Rand’s book Atlas Shrugged who represented the social protest against socialism. It is a failure to participate in a regime that requires one to work for the betterment of others over the betterment of self. The only way to protest Obama Care is to minimize one’s participation in the economy that is so ordered. In the absence of sane policy responses, such as repealing the monstrosity known as Obama Care, the only recourse is to withdraw from the economy.
It isn’t a strike as such. It is simply a failure to comply, or a failure to launch. Even the website for Obama Care doesn’t want to participate. Why are we, as a nation, engaged in this madness? “
When they were called, they stepped up and served. Now it’s our turn to serve them.”
” Featuring, Co-host Connie Francis, Jason Gould, Kevin Spacey, Patti Austin, James Brolin, Jason Bateman, Ben Vereen, Michael Feinstein, Gloria Loring, Steve Tyrell, The American Military Spouses Choir, Medal of Honor Recipient Sgt.Ty Carter, Bette Midler, Henry Winkler, Mark Harmon and the cast of NCIS, Under the Streetlamp, Lou Diamond Phillips, The Temptations Review, and many veterans whose stories are both emotional and inspiring. “
Watch it tonight and offer whatever support that you can . If you are unable to watch you can still make a donation here .
” There’s a lot of missing space to be filled in the map below(Ed. Above) , but what it shows is the states where at least 2,330,000 individual health insurance policies have been discontinued or cancelled as a direct result of the implementation of Obamacare:
Here’s where you can find an interactive version of the map, which shows the number of reported Obamacare-driven health insurance policy cancellations reported as of November 2, 2013.
Here’s a short summary of the states for which that data has been reported: Alabama (87,000), Alaska (5,400), California (279,000), Florida (300,000), Kansas (20,000), Kentucky (280,000), Michigan (140,000), Minnesota (146,000), Montana (20,000), New Jersey (800,000), New York (100,000), Oregon (150,000), and Wyoming (2,600).
For the numbers we do have, we now count over 3.8 million Americans who have been notified by their insurers that they have been forced out of their health insurance plan they liked because of the “Affordable Care Act”. “
This is just a preliminary count , so hang onto your wallets , things are going to get worse . Read more .
” The market is fine for some things, people will say, but other activities are too important to be left to the market. Or too complicated. Or too fundamental to our democracy.
I say: Privatize everything.
To some of you, that will sound callous — but failure to privatize services, keeping them in government hands instead, is what impoverishes and kills people. Nothing compassionate about that.
Take organ donations.
Regulations forbid buying and selling organs, so the market cannot operate. Desperate patients must wait and hope someone gives out of sheer generosity, that someone dies at just the right time, and that hospital administrators bump their case to the top of the list.
Some things ought to be done by government: things like running courts, policing pollution, and protecting the border. But most everything else should be left to private actors.
Government offers guarantees on paper and promises in speeches. But government rarely delivers. Private companies did brilliant Internet work for President Obama’s election campaign. But when it came to his health insurance website, the president put government in charge. We saw the result.
Markets aren’t perfect, but they allow for a world where prudence is rewarded and sloth punished, a world in which more people take risks and innovate. That’s a world where people prosper.”
Read it all . It all boils down to accountability … With government there is none .
” The United States Postal Service overpaid trucking contractors $61.5 million through its Voyager Card Program, which allows drivers to expense their gas on a credit card.
According to the inspector general, the Postal Service failed to identify fuel overpayments by contractors on Highway Contract Routes (HCR), which covers more than 17,000 drivers.
The Postal Service—which lost $1.9 billion in the second quarter of 2013, and owes nearly $50 billion in liabilities—has to collect millions each year from private individuals and firms contracted to deliver mail. These individuals are overcharging the agency for their fuel.”
Welcome to State monopolies … ever the diligent steward of taxpayer funds .
” Sen. David Vitter took his campaign against federal employer-provided health benefits to a new level on Monday night.
The Louisiana Republican appeared on the Fox News program “Hannity” along with David Bossie of the conservative group Citizens United to launch a new advertising effort in favor of the Vitter amendment that includes a fundraising effort for Citizens United.
“We’re really excited about this, being able to take it to the American people so that they can rise up and say look, enough is enough. Congress, you can’t pass a law that by the way is so bad it can’t be rolled out in a competent way for anyone but themselves,” Bossie said. “That’s just plain wrong.” “
Here is a radical idea … how about we designate all politicians as self-employed , since it isn’t supposed to be a career choice anyway , and cease providing anything to our elected officials other than a salary and a 1099 form at the end of the year ?
Let them shop around for their own health insurance and invest in their own retirement funds . Why should the taxpayers foot the bill for such largesse ? With perqs like they have now it’s no wonder they treat the jobs like sinecures. We’ve only ourselves to blame is we allow this madness to continue .