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Bill Pitcher 
Member since Oct 10, 2018


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Re: “This Modern World

Medicare-for-all cost estimates exceed $32T over ten years. Total federal tax revenue for 2019 is estimated at $3.4T. Medicare-for-all thus would double taxes. Since not all citizens pay federal income taxes, it will become necessary to expand the tax base to include nearly everyone who does not pay federal income tax now. Effectively, those who are younger, healthier and who can least afford Medicare insurance premiums and contributions will subsidize older, less healthy retirees. Have at it. Just give Howard Schultz or Michael Bloomberg a ring for a bit of economic education.

Don't confuse health insurance with health care. The best way to reduce the cost of health care and expand its availability is to produce more doctors and health professionals. If you want to spend tax dollars to improve health care, consider subsidizing medical education costs to promote the desirability of a medical education to more students. This country can use more doctors and fewer cartoonists.

Posted by Bill Pitcher on 02/13/2019 at 8:19 PM

Re: “Starve the Beast

It might help dampen some of the hoped-for emotion to look at the methodology behind the data upon which your scenario is based, which is provided annually by the AFL-CIO usually in May-June.

First, annual worker pay is based on an average workweek of less than 34 hours per week. This data isn't broken down further by worker's age or experience, part-time or full-time status, or size of company. Fringe benefits (yes, they exist) aren't included. By adjusting worker wages to a 50-hour work-week and adding the value of worker fringe benefits, worker compensation increases to $72,000 (2016 data).

Second, the CEO data is based on data for CEOs in the largest 500 companies who are working full-time in their prime earning years. That's compared to the cash wages only for 99 million workers a material portion of which work part-time. While no data is available for how much CEOs work, in my experience any CEO who works less than 50 hours a week isn't likely to keep that job for very long. If the AFL-CIO was calculated based on data for the over 20,000 CEOs in American companies, the average annual CEO pay and benefits for this broader group is about $220,000.

Now that we've trimmed the fat and pork from the study's data, well, ..., this is still outrageous, no?! The AFL-CIO's not-so-subtle solution of course is income redistribution. How would that work? If we took the top 500 CEOs $6.2B in 2015 compensation and redistributed it to the 99 million workers in the study, they'd receive an annual pay increase of $63 before taxes, which would buy enough beer to fill half your bathtub. Happy?

What's really troubling about this annual charade is that citizens, media and politicians who claim to have inquiring, analytical, open minds don't question its statistical hi-jinks. While some CEOs at the head of very large multinational companies command head-snapping compensation packages, the AFL-CIO data provides no basis to claim that workers' pay is stagnant or that shareholders are being ripped off.

Instead, we're treated to cartoons....

Posted by Bill Pitcher on 01/03/2019 at 5:23 AM
Posted by Bill Pitcher on 01/03/2019 at 4:24 AM

Re: “Climate Change Action Should Not Be Partisan—nor Ignored Locally

If Bend can't dictate bipartisanship from the federales, then perhaps you will convince China, India, Africa and Europe to follow along. After all, only the US is meeting the Paris Accord's emission reduction goals, and that after withdrawing from the Paris scheme. And let's hope we don't have Yellow Vest rioting in Bend....

1 like, 2 dislikes
Posted by Bill Pitcher on 12/06/2018 at 7:31 PM

Re: “Supreme Court Silver Lining

Oh, puuhhhlllleeeeezzzzeee. A substantial number of those law professors have never been in a federal appellate courtroom. None of them appreciate that Justice Kavanaugh was testifying in the position of an accused, not presiding as a judge, at least not to the extent to resist trying to get some attention in the New York Times.

If indeed 70% of the electorate approves of Roe v. Wade, then they should work to promote state legislation that codifies Roe into Oregon's statutes. Ireland, a 90% Catholic country, used its referendum process to do so earlier this year. Massachusetts' legislature codified Roe earlier this year. Would you rather argue about preserving Roe or actually do something about it?

Go outside and look at all the beauty in central Oregon and realize the sky isn't falling.

Posted by Bill Pitcher on 10/10/2018 at 6:21 PM

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