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Thursday, November 30, 2017

Let's . . .

. . . File A Joint Tax Return . . .
(from https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/first-read/trump-populist-not-when-it-comes-his-tax-plan-n824851)
THEN
". . . it will no longer be accurate to describe him (Trump) as an economic populist who pursues policies to benefit the poor and the middle class at the expense of the wealthiest Americans. The reason: The Senate tax plan he’s selling is the exact opposite of economic populism. . . During the 2016 presidential campaign — and even in his first year as president — Trump portrayed himself as an economic populist. . .  Do you believe in raising taxes on the wealthy? TRUMP: "I do, I do, including myself. I do." (Today Show town hall, April 21, 2016). . . “The thing I'm going to do is make sure the middle class gets good tax breaks. Because they have been absolutely shunned.” . . .(“Meet the Press,” May 8, 2016) . . . “I have joined the political arena so that the powerful can no longer beat up on people who cannot defend themselves” (GOP convention speech, July 21, 2016) . . . “We are transferring power from Washington DC and giving it back to you, the American People ... The forgotten men and women of our country will be forgotten no longer.” (Inaugural address, Jan. 20, 2017) . . . “I have wealthy friends that say to me I don’t mind paying more tax. . . " (Wall Street Journal interview, July 25, 2017) . . “Our framework includes our explicit commitment that tax reform will protect low-income and middle-income households, not the wealthy and well-connected. They can call me all they want. It’s not going to help. I’m doing the right thing, and it’s not good for me. Believe me.” (Speech on the GOP tax plan, Sept. 27, 2017). . ."

NOW
". . . Under the Senate tax plan, according to the Congressional Budget Office, the poorest Americans are worse off (due to no longer receiving tax credits because the bill eliminates the health-care law’s individual mandate), while the richest American are better off; . . . Even if you exclude the individual mandate from the analysis, the CBO showsthe poorest will see their taxes go up by 2027, because the individual tax cuts are temporary while the corporate ones are permanent. . ."


Let's File A Joint Tax Return

©2018 Raymond M. Jozwiak



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Wednesday, November 29, 2017

More Taxes . . .




(from https://www.snopes.com/tax-plan-graduate-students/)
CLAIM
The Republican tax reform plan would increase the tax burden on graduate students by counting waived tuition as personal income.

WHAT'S TRUE
The House of Representatives' 16 November 2017 version of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act would tax graduate tuition waivers, and has passed the House.

WHAT'S FALSE
As of 20 November 2017, the Senate version of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act keeps the current exemption from taxation on graduate tuition waivers.

WHAT'S UNDETERMINED
Whether the final version of the tax bill, if passed, will include an end to the exemption of tuition waivers from taxation.




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Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Taxes . .

(from Vox.com)
". . . if you saw a candidate standing on a dais pointing at his pet dog and telling you it was a cat, you’d think something pretty odd was going on. . . both citizens watching the tax reform debate in Washington and reporters covering it ought to ask themselves: Why, if this plan is so good, do its authors keep lying about what the bill does? . . . It’s obvious that if you cut a tax that’s only paid by married couples who’ve amassed at least $11 million that you are helping rich people. It’s obvious that if you enact a special discount tax rate for people who own LLCs then you are helping Donald Trump, who owns a ton of them. And it’s obvious that if part of your plan is permanent and part of it is temporary, and the part you made temporary is the part that helps the middle class, then helping the middle class wasn’t your priority. . . everyone who’s anyone in the Republican Party said they wanted to cut taxes for the middle class, and not for rich people in general or Donald Trump in particular — the Senate’s coalesced around a bill whose long-term distributional impact looks like this. . . this hypothetical family of four that Paul Ryan cooked up and has instructed his caucus to meme about does get a one-year $1,182 tax cut. But under the bill the House passed last week, that tax cut shrinks over time and within a few years turns into a tax increase. . . If that’s such a good idea, why did its proponents invest so much time and energy in pretending they were going to do the opposite?Republicans promised a middle-class tax cut. . . As a candidate for office, Trump ran on promising a middle-class tax cut. At a meeting with business leaders at the beginning of the month, Trump was on the same page, saying, “It's a tax bill for middle class.” . . . But it’s not. Neither the House bill nor the Senate bill are good for the middle class. . . The middle-class provisions are afterthoughts, scrounged together to meet messaging goals. . . Trump frequently likes to make this point is to cast himself as a selfless champion of the people, willing to raise his own taxes for the sake of the country. . . Trump’s team is now engaging in bizarre deflections. . . A telling thing about the cavalcade of lies Republicans are telling about taxes is the party can’t quite get its story straight as to what the policy agenda even is here. They are telling deficit hawks that the bill is fiscally responsible, adding a large but manageable $1.5 trillion to the debt over 10 years but revenue-neutral in the long term. They're telling others that statutory “pay-as-you-go,” or PAYGO, rules will be suspended, and the bill won’t really lead to the automatic cuts in Medicare and other programs that, by law, will result from its passage. They’re telling some people the middle-class tax hikes written into the Senate bill will never be enacted, so there’s no need to worry. That’s the opposite of what they’re telling deficit hawks. So then some Republicans are telling some deficit hawks that the follow-up to the tax bill will be a return to entitlement reform. . . Of course, that’s the opposite of what Trump promised his voters during the campaign . . ."


GET IT GUYS???!!!!
. . . or maybe not!





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Monday, November 27, 2017

More Millstone. . .

. . . performances by OHO from November 2017. . .


. . . this one of Hidden Agenda. . .



Working

©1998 Raymond M. Jozwiak



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Sunday, November 26, 2017

Act . . .

. . . First, THINK later. . .



THURSDAY
(from https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/politics-news/trump-administration-lifts-ban-importing-heads-hunted-elephants-n821331
". . . The Trump administration confirmed Thursday it lifted a ban that had prohibited hunters from importing trophies of elephants killed in two African nations, reversing a 2014 rule put in place by the Obama White House. . . A spokesperson for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service told NBC News that the agency had “determined that the hunting and management programs for African elephants in Zimbabwe and Zambia will enhance the survival of the species in the wild.” . . . “Legal, well-regulated sport hunting as part of a sound management program can benefit certain species by providing incentives to local communities to conserve those species and by putting much-needed revenue back into conservation,” the spokesperson said.


FRIDAY
(https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/17/us/politics/trump-elephant-trophy-ban.html)
". . . President Trump on Friday reversed the government’s decision to start allowing hunters to import trophies of elephants that were killed in two African countries, pending a further review. . . His evening Twitter message reversed a decision by his own administration over Zimbabwe that was announced this week and promoted as recently as Friday afternoon by the White House press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders. . .“Put big game trophy decision on hold until such time as I review all conservation facts,” Mr. Trump tweeted. “Under study for years. Will update soon with Secretary Zinke. Thank you!" . . Ryan Zinke, the interior secretary, said in a statement later Friday night that the decision applied to two African countries, though it did not name them. . . .“President Trump and I have talked, and both believe that conservation and healthy herds are critical,” the statement said. “As a result, in a manner compliant with all applicable laws, rules and regulations, the issuing of permits is being put on hold as the decision is being removed.”. . . "




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Saturday, November 25, 2017

Millstone . . .

. . . performance by OHO of Dot On Your Door recently. . .



You’re living your ninth life time is running out
The blood of the lamb has dried and lost its clout
If you show no mercy, no mercy will be your
You’re dated and done for the dot’s on your door

On day one they marked you, put you on the list
Embroidered a burning red letter on your bib
You move with caution, the trap’s laced with lure
You’re dated and done, there’s a dot on your door

Cowards die a thousand times, the brave die only once
If ignorance is bliss, may your joy be out to lunch
If you were meant to hang in life then you will never drown
Dodging the left, the right one brings you to the ground

You’re using the right words, getting the response
Newton was right, you’re life’s a renaissance
Your impedimenta pile up on the floor
You’re locked in this room, There’s a dot on your door

Kissing your mother, digging in the dirt
Hoping something of your life will take root and give birth
The vine seeks the light, branches reaching through the clouds
Where love will prune and crown you, relieve you of your shroud



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Friday, November 24, 2017

Miserable . . .


(https://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/texas-church-shooting/fact-check-no-more-guns-won-t-prevent-mass-shootings-n818126)
". . . In the mid 1990s, the gun lobby accused the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of being anti-gun after a 1993 study found that keeping firearms in the home increased the risk of homicide by a family member or intimate acquaintance — and the National Rifle Association encouraged its congressional allies to target CDC funding. Congress passed a 1996 spending bill with the Dickey Amendment, a rider that barred government funds going to the CDC from being used to “advocate or promote gun control.” Congress stripped the CDC of the $2.6 million spent annually on gun violence research. . .“We hadn’t been advocating gun control,” Mark Rosenberg, who oversaw the CDC's gun violence research efforts at the time, told NBC News. “It was kinda a shot across the bow. It said, 'Look, if you keep doing this, we can make your life miserable.'”. . ."





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Thursday, November 23, 2017

Evidence . . .


(https://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/texas-church-shooting/fact-check-no-more-guns-won-t-prevent-mass-shootings-n818126)
". . . But there’s no evidence that more guns can reduce gun violence broadly, said Daniel Webster, Director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research at the Bloomberg School of Public Health. . . “As a researcher, that drives me nuts,” he said, explaining that guns increase the number of everyday moments or interactions — like bar fights, road rage, suicidal thoughts — that turn lethal. “The more guns are readily available, the more shootings occur. That’s what the latest research shows. When states make it more easy for people to carry guns, the number of incidents of aggravated assault grows.”. . . According to the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, 93 people die a day from gun violence, including 32 murders and 58 suicides. A study out of Stanford Law School analyzed crime data from 1977 to 2014 and found that areas with more relaxed “right-to-carry” gun laws saw higher rates of violent crime. . . “If more guns made America safer, we’d be an awfully safe place,” said University of California Los Angeles law professor Adam Winkler, author of "Gunfight: The Battle Over the Right to Bear Arms in America.". . ."




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Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Mercy . . .

. . . or possibly none . . .


(https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/mercy)
Definition of mercy
plural mercies
1 a :compassion or forbearance (see forbearance 1) shown especially to an offender or to one subject to one's power; also :lenient or compassionate treatment begged for mercy
b :imprisonment rather than death imposed as penalty for first-degree murder
2 a :a blessing that is an act of divine favor or compassion May God have mercy on us.
b :a fortunate circumstance it was a mercy they found her before she froze
3 :compassionate treatment of those in distress works of mercy among the poor
— mercy adjective
— at the mercy of
:wholly in the power of :with no way to protect oneself against


A new tune  (in progress) inspired by many old tunes . . .


Merciless

©2017 Raymond M. Jozwiak



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Tuesday, November 21, 2017

More Work . . .


. . . on Working . . .


Some things never end.  One of those things is the ongoing desire to refine one's own creations.  Working was written almost twenty years ago, with lyrics. But the solo piano performance has never been recorded for public release.  Since its resurrection about one year ago, I find many sections of it benefit tremendously from subtle dynamic enhancements. Another benefit of all this 're-working' is the intimacy with the unusual chord changes over which the improvisation is undertaken. Only time will tell how, or even if, the song finally appears on a recorded collection in the future.


Working

©1998 Raymond M. Jozwiak



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Monday, November 20, 2017

Despond . . .

(from http://www.covenantofgrace.com/pilgrims_progress_slough_of_despond.htm)
". . . Now I saw in my dream that, just as they had ended this talk, they drew near to a very miry slough that was in the midst of the plain; and they being heedless, did both fall suddenly into the bog. The name of the slough was "Despond." Here, therefore, they wallowed for a time, being grievously bedaubed with the dirt; and CHRISTIAN, because of the burden that was on his back, began to sink in the mire.

Pli. Then said PLIABLE, "Ah! neighbour CHRISTIAN, where are you now?"

Chr. "Truly," said CHRISTIAN, "I do not know."

Pli. At that PLIABLE began to be offended, and angrily said to his fellow, "Is this the happiness you have told me of all this while? If we have such ill speed at our first setting out, what may we expect 'twixt this and our journey's end? If I get out again with my life, you shall possess the brave country alone." And with that he gave a desperate struggle or two, and got out of the mire on that side of the slough which was next to his own house: so away he went, and CHRISTIAN saw him no more.

Wherefore CHRISTIAN was left to tumble in the Slough of Despond alone; but still he endeavoured to struggle to that side of the slough that was farthest from his own house, and next to the wicket gate: which he did, but could not get out, because of the burden that was upon his back. But I beheld, in my dream, that a man came to him whose name was HELP, and asked him what he did there?

Chr. "Sir," said CHRISTIAN, "I was bidden to go this way by a man called EVANGELIST, who directed me also to yonder gate, that I might escape the wrath to come; and as I was going thither, I fell in here.". . ."



Gonzo practicing
Slough of Despond
by Jay Graboski



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Sunday, November 19, 2017

Chop . . .


". . . On the other side of the GOP divide, John Weaver, a longtime aide to Ohio Gov. John Kasich, wrote on Twitter that the party should treat the president like dead tissue. . . "I'm not gleeful about GOP losing elections. But if you have gangrene in your leg (Trump), chop the sucker off. But 2018 is looming & that is a big chop. #WakeUpGOP," Weaver said. . ."






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Saturday, November 18, 2017

Prayers? . . .

(https://www.nbcnews.com/think/opinion/why-i-boycotted-congress-moment-silence-after-texas-shooting-ncna819161)
". . . I did pray for the victims and their families that day. But as a federal legislator, I know our thoughts and prayers are simply not enough. . . When tragedy strikes, feeling helpless is understandable. There is little you can do to stop a tornado, a hurricane, or a cancer diagnosis from changing your life in an instant. But gun violence is not an unavoidable fact of life. . . We cannot treat Sunday’s events as a natural disaster — this tragedy is man-made. . . Offering thoughts and prayers are a valuable way to let loved ones know you care, but no one should offer them at the expense of action. . . That’s why when Speaker Paul Ryan asked for yet another moment of silence in the U.S. Capitol on Monday, I chose to leave. . . I respect my colleagues who participate in moments of silence. I have participated in all of them until now. But based on the increasing number of mass shootings and the inaction of Congress, I have concluded that the best way to honor victims of mass shootings is to try to prevent future mass shootings, not stand and be silent for 60 seconds. . . Since I became a member of Congress in 2015, there have been over 1,000 mass shootings in the United States according to the nonprofit Gun Violence Archive, including three of the most deadly in U.S. history. . . Since I became a member of Congress in 2015, more than 60,000 people have died from firearms-related deaths in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control. . . Since I became a member of Congress in 2015, Congress has not taken a single vote on gun safety legislation. . . But since 2015 we did hold a number of 60-second moments of silence — more than 20, actually. And what have those 60 second acts resulted in? Nothing. . . "





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Friday, November 17, 2017

Three. . .


. . . guesses just WHO tweeted THIS gem. . .


"The Al Frankenstien picture is really bad, speaks a thousand words. Where do his hands go in pictures 2, 3, 4, 5 & 6 while she sleeps? ....."



(Note to fans(and Electors):  Is this REALLY what YOU had in mind when you voted?)




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Thursday, November 16, 2017

Mature? . . .

. . . not especially in the case of our "President". . .


(http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/trump-back-from-asia-knocks-%E2%80%98loser%E2%80%99-cnn/ar-BBEZeYo?li=BBmkt5R&ocid=ientp)
". . . Trump bashed CNN upon his return from a 12-day Asia trip, calling it "fake" in an early morning tweet on Wednesday. . ."While in the Philippines I was forced to watch @CNN, which I have not done in months, and again realized how bad, and FAKE, it is." Trump wrote. . . "Loser!" . . .Trump by contrast tweeted that "Fox and Friends" would be showing more footage of his "successful" trip overseas. . ."Believe it or not, even when I'm in Washington or New York, I do not watch much television," Trump told reporters. "People that don't know me, they like to say I watch television - people with fake sources. You know, fake reporters, fake sources.". . ."


Meantime, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) said,  "I have never been so ashamed of a foreign trip in my years. It's just inside-out," Schumer said. "We attack our friends and the people who have given us the most trouble, China and Russia, we mollycoddle - that is so bad for the future of this country."





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Wednesday, November 15, 2017

My Ego . . .

Sometimes I can get my point across
And I do it rather well
You can see
What I think
About me

It's just my ego
It gets the best of me
It's just my ego
It's just my ego
It just won't let me be
It just won't let me be alone
It's not one of my most redeeming qualities
Still though it serves me rather well sometimes
It won't be easy to just let it go
It's just my ego

I take such great pride in what I do
Everyone should take some too
Don't you think
Pride in me
Not in you

It's just my ego
It gets the best of me
It's just my ego
It's just my ego
It just won't let me be
It just won't let me be alone
It's not one of my most redeeming qualities
Still though it serves me rather well sometimes
It won't be easy to just let it go
It's just my ego

There's a fine distinction between confidence and pride
There's a fine distinction that I'll never know
Cloaked with some discretion you emerge from the inside
I emerge in all my glory
What is there to hide

Mother said that I would never make
Any friends if I don't see
What I'm like
If I don't lose some pride

It's just my ego
It gets the best of me
It's just my ego
It's just my ego
It just won't let me be
It just won't let me be alone
It's not one of my most redeeming qualities
Still though it serves me rather well sometimes
It won't be easy to just let it go
It's just my ego


My Ego
©2002 Raymond M. Jozwiak



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Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Cider . . .

. . . and other things . . .


(from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cider)
". . . Ciders can be classified from dry to sweet. Their appearance ranges from cloudy with sediment to completely clear, and their colour ranges from almost clear to amber to brown. The variations in clarity and colour are mostly due to filtering between pressing and fermentation. Some apple varieties will produce a clear cider without any need for filtration. Both sparkling and still ciders are made; the sparkling variety is the more common. . . Modern, mass-produced ciders closely resemble sparkling wine in appearance. More traditional brands tend to be darker and cloudier. They are often stronger than the mass-produced varieties and taste more strongly of apples. Almost colourless, white cider has the same apple juice content as conventional cider but is harder to create because the cider maker has to blend various apples to create a clearer liquid. White ciders tend to be sweeter and more refreshing. They are typically 7-8 % ABV in strength. Black cider, by contrast, is dry amber premium cider which has an alcohol content of 7-8 % ABV. The descriptor black usually comes after the brand name such as Union Black and Barnstormer Black. . ."


OHO at Millstone Cellars - 7:30PM
Friday, November 17th, 2017
MILLSTONE CELLARS
2029 Monkton Road
Monkton, MD 21111
443-895-9991
Price: $5.00
OHO brings their unique, refined rock/prog/folk/pop/jazz music to Millstone Cellars for a beautiful late autumn evening.





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