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Showing posts from 2017

I Have Disgust For Bootlickers

Congress has voted more than fifty times to repeal the Affordable Care Care Act since it became law in 2009. They have had seven years to come up with a plan to replace it with but low and behold, come to find out that they have only been complaining all this time while sitting on their hands. Now, President Trump is putting on the pressure for the Senate to put something on his desk to sign and he apparently doesn’t give a damn what it looks like because he doesn’t understand medical insurance and doesn’t know what it’s like to have medical bills to pay. And these Senators, afraid of losing their cushy, high payed jobs with all the “perks” that go with it seem to be willing to just submit, regardless of how many people will lose their health insurance. They are willing to go against the wishes of their own constituents simply because they are Republicans and their political party had the repeal of “Obamacare” as one of its goals. It was a cruel, stupid goal or promise to begin wit…

Death By China

Trump To Cut Social Security

Trump’s Promise Not to Cut Social Security has been Broken by Robert Roach, Jr. President Trump’s fiscal 2018 budget is a non-starter. He has betrayed America’s seniors. In fact, $2 trillion in deficit reduction turns out to be just a math error. The budget cuts $72 billion over ten years from disability programs, including Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Trump promised repeatedly to protect – not cut – Social Security. Yet his first budget does just that, harming millions of disabled Americans.  The Trump budget also slashes $1.4 trillion from Medicaid over 10 years. According to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), total Medicaid spending was $368 billion in 2016. Almost two-thirds of that was for seniors and people with disabilities, who rely on Medicaid for health care and long-term care. This cut is drastic and dangerous by any measurement. This budget also decimates the Community Development Block Grant, which pro…

Trumpcare Bad For All But The Rich

American Health Care Act This American Health Care Act (AHCA) decimates Medicaid, with more than $800 billion in cuts.
Donald Trump’s 2018 fiscal year budget attempts to add another $600 billion in Medicaid cuts to that figure, for a total of $1.4 trillion.
It is difficult to say what the cruelest aspect of this vote is, but raiding Medicare and cutting Medicaid surely are at the top of the list.
Even President Trump acknowledges that the AHCA is “mean.”
President Trump could fix this by going back to his campaign promises not to cut Medicare and Medicaid.
The AHCA drops the coverage guarantee for people with pre-existing conditions, strips coverage from millions and drives up costs for millions more.
The House bill takes away health insurance coverage away from 23 million Americans, and the Senate is using it as their starting point.
The numbers are especially troubling for anyone with a pre-existing condition. Premium increases are going to be massive for this group, which includes million…

Have a Great Retirement, Jim and Carol

Although not considered my “boss”, in the usual sense, I’ve never-the-less always tried to consider SOAR Director, Jim Centner, as my boss.
Since Jim became our SOAR Director and while I’ve been the Secretary Treasurer, I must say that he has been the best boss I’ve ever had.
Now, I’ve had a lot of asshole bosses during my working years in the U.S. Navy and then working for the Northern Indiana Public Service Company, so I think I’m qualified to know an asshole boss when I see one.
Jim has always shown himself to be fair, reliable, understanding, trustworthy, reasonable and generous. He has made my work with SOAR extremely satisfying and it’s been a real joy to work with and for him - and for this, I will be forever grateful. 

The friendship of Jim and his wife, Carol, has been a real plus for my wife, Elaine and I and I hope they’re able to enjoy his announced retirement as much as we have enjoyed ours.

Thanks from Bill Gibbons

Thank YouWhile there have been a lot of serious developments that can adversely affect retirees and the working class that I could write about, I would like to extend my appreciation and thanks to two SOAR activists and leaders of SOAR that I have had the privilege and opportunity to work with in pursuing the mission and activities of SOAR. Charlie Averill, who was the Secretary-Treasurer of SOAR, decided not to run for re-election during our recent SOAR conference. He has since been appointed an Emeritus member by International President Leo W. Gerard. Charlie has devoted many years to SOAR in the performance of his duties as Secretary-Treasurer. Those of us who have had the opportunity to work with him have firsthand knowledge of his dedication and leadership. His work on the “SOAR Chapter-Connection” is just one example. I am pleased that he is still working on it. Jim Centner, SOAR Director, is retiring June 1. I have found Jim’s dedication, leadership and work for SOAR untiring, su…

Take Action, Stand Up, Fight Back

Billy’s Banter Stand Up fight Back
Returning from the SOAR Conference energized and ready to go to work, we are hit with a vote in the US Congress that will reduce health benefits to seniors and a budget that makes it very clear where their priorities are. For an Administration to put millions at risk of losing or having their health care benefits reduced; limiting funds to programs like Meals on Wheels; to reduce SSDI benefits; to reduce funding into Medicare (which will cause financial issues in the future and open the door to change or eliminate Medicare) and to reduce funding to Medicaid, should be enough to get every SOAR member energized. The fastest growing groups of Medicaid recipients are seniors who enter nursing homes and have no means to pay other than Medicaid. 
All of this is proposed to provide, in part, money for a tax break for the wealthy. This administration believes it is a fair trade off to reduce our benefits so taxes like the estate tax can be repealed.  Presently,…
From the Director (Retired)Passing the Torch By the time you receive this newsletter I will be officially retired and an active dues paying member of this wonderful organization. An organization that I have had the opportunity to help shepherd for over the last 16 years. I leave knowing the elected leadership is committed to growing a politically active retiree organization dedicated to protecting and enhancing the quality of life of retirees and workers in both of our countries. 
I have had the pleasure of knowing and working with Julie Stein, who USW International President Leo W. Gerard has appointed to assume my duties upon my retirement. Julie brings a wealth of experience into her new job. She has been an instrumental part of our union Political Department for the last five years. Prior to moving to Pittsburgh, Julie spent a great deal of her time in Wisconsin working election cycles, where she knocked on hundreds of doors and participated in phone banks to educate our members on …

Eternal Father......Navy Hymn

2017 SOAR Conference

Steelworkers Organization of Active Retirees (SOAR)

Eternal Father Strong To Save

The Cold Within

President Tweeter Causes High Anxiety

When household problems are cause for anxiety, such as an old kitchen faucet becoming disabled, a water softener plugging up and then a hole in my well pump screen is discovered, it is disheartening for sure. But high anxiety with the thought of President Tweeter having his fingers near the nuclear codes makes all these type problems seem like pretty small potatoes. I hope that congress will find a way to get this president some mental health care before it’s too late for us all.

donald trump again

What A Wonderful World

New Rule: The Magic (R)

Kellyanne Conway is NUTS

Trump, People's Court

Just the Facts, Ma'am

What is Fascism

Chomsky On Trump

Saving Carrier Jobs Is Just The First Stepby Robert Roach, Jr. On the campaign trail, President-elect Trump discussed workers’ understandable apprehension about losing jobs and what it means for the future of their families. He promised to stop Carrier Corp. from moving 2,100 jobs it had planned to shift from Indiana to Mexico. The United Steelworkers had tried negotiating with Carrier in order to keep the jobs in the United States by pledging $23 million per year in savings it could offer to the company. But Carrier rejected the offer, citing its expected savings of $65 million each year by moving to Mexico.  A spokesperson for the United Steelworkers 1999, the union representing Carrier’s production employees, told The Washington Post that the union was boxed out of the talks. It seemed Carrier was determined to choose additional profitability over its dedicated workers.  Now, after a lobbying effort from the incoming Trump administration, Carrier has agreed to keep about half of those …

Report From The Alliance for American Manufacturing (AAM)

Report From The Alliance for American Manufacturing (AAM) President-elect Donald Trump focused on many hot-button issues during the Republican primaries and the general election in which he defeated Democrat Hillary Clinton. Trump, ever the savvy salesman, began the dialogue about American manufacturing and trade right out of the gate, despite the traditional Republican mantra promoting “free trade agreements.”
Trump quickly promised crackdowns on unfair trade deals and called NAFTA the “worst trade agreement ever.” He was particularly focused on China and Mexico where many American manufacturers have moved their factories to increase profits. He promised 45 percent tariffs on China if it continued to “dump” its overcapacity of steel in the United States because it was costing America millions of dollars and middle-class jobs.
It was a “do as I say, not as I do” situation. Trump used steel manufactured in China to build the Trump International Hotel Las Vegas and purchased Chinese-made …
Elections Have ConsequencesWith the election of a Republican Congress and President, I have great concerns regarding the future of retirees and workers. It is no secret that the agenda of many of these Republicans is to do away with Medicare as we know it and attack Social Security, attack Unions by having a national “Right To Work” (for less law) and to attack many Executive Orders that President Obama enacted including; improved overtime pay, more transparency in Union organizing campaigns on the spending of company money to defeat employee organizing efforts, eliminate prevailing wages on government contracts, etc. This, all in the name of eliminating regulations.We will also be confronted with the possible appointment of anti-Union and corporate interest individuals to the Supreme Court and regulatory agencies. For example, the Trump business is fighting the employees in Las Vegas who are trying to form a Union. He will now have the right to appoint members to the National Labor R…