December 9 Morning Edition

— FRONT PAGE WITH BIG COLOR PICTURE: Angry worshipers lash out against Trump across Muslim world – AP (DIERSEN: Anti-Trumps want America to dump Israel and to dump Jewish people.)
(FROM THE ARTICLE: Large crowds of worshippers across the Muslim world staged anti-U.S. marches Friday, some stomping on posters of Donald Trump or burning American flags in the largest outpouring of anger yet at the U.S. president’s recognition of bitterly contested Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. In the holy city itself, prayers at Islam’s third-holiest site dispersed largely without incident, but Palestinians clashed with Israeli troops in several dozen West Bank hotspots and on the border with the Gaza Strip.)
— How the GOP tax cut could take money away from most Americans – Heather Long
— Wages remain mostly stagnant despite unemployment hitting new lows – Danielle Paquette
— Supreme Court will review case alleging partisan gerrymanding from Maryland – Robert Barnes
— DISGUSTING: Veterinarians seek permission to research pot meds for pets – AP–marijuana-pet-medicine-20171207-story.html
— Rep. John Lewis: Trump is an ‘insult’ to civil rights event – AP (DIERSEN: Ever-increasingly, anti-Trumps encourage minorities to hate Whites.)–trump-mississippi-20171207-story.html
— Analysts miffed by lack of pay hikes for workers as unemployment rate continues to dip – Danielle Paquette (DIERSEN: What pay hikes have you gotten? Since 1966, my critics/opponents, their operatives, and their dupes have been beyond furious that my pay increased every year that I worked for the federal government 1966-1969 and 1971-1997 because of step increases, COLAs, and/or promotions except 1980 when I took an $18,847 (21%) pay cut in today’s dollars to transfer from IRS to GAO. My critics/opponents, their operatives, and their dupes have always accused me of being overpaid. In my defense, I earned a) a job-related bachelor’s degree when I was 21 in 1970 and job-related master’s degrees when I was 27, 31, and 48, b) job-related professional certifications when I was 30, 32, 41, 45, 47, and 48, and c) a job-related professional license when I was 32.)


— Trump says country ‘cannot afford’ Roy Moore loss in Alabama – AP


— Kane County Republicans pick Ken Shepro as new leader – James Fuller


— Call to clean up ‘hellish viaducts’ disrupts homeless community – Ravi Baichwal


— We must break stigmas about careers in skilled trades – Nick Stafford (DIERSEN: What about breaking the stigma of being a lawn mower, newspaper boy, dish washer, golf shoe cleaner, slag chipper, gasoline pumper, mailman, automobile assembly line worker, security guard, tire, automotive services, and major appliance salesman, tax collector, and auditor? I did yard work and delivered newspapers 1962-1964; washed dishes 1964-1966; cleaned golf shoes, chipped slag, and pumped gasoline in 1966; delivered mail 1966-1969; worked on an automobile assembly line and as a security guard in 1970; sold tires, automotive services, and major appliances 1970-1971; pumped gasoline 1971-1972; collected delinquent taxes 1971-1980; and audited federal agencies 1980-1997. Because the aforesaid jobs are so strongly stigmatized, it was extremely difficult for my superiors to get younger people, minorities, females, and veterans to take them.)


— UI releases statement pledging free speech for all – Julie Wurth (DIERSEN: Yes, but if you say anything positive about members of Group B, members of Group A will kill you figuratively if not literally. Members of Group A are anti-Trump, anti-Protestant, anti-conservative, anti-patriotic, anti-Republican, anti-American, anti-White, anti-male, anti-older people, anti-rich people, anti-gun owners, anti-German Americans, and/or anti-those whose ancestors have been in America longer than their ancestors and members of Group B are Trump supporters, Protestant, conservative, patriotic, Republican, American, White, male, older, rich, gun owners, German Americans, and/or those whose ancestors have been in America for a long time.)


— Iowa 4th District Republican Rep. Steve King: ‘Mixing cultures’ leads to lower quality life – Bret Hayworth (DIERSEN: Those who promote Affirmative Action, Diversity, and Inclusion have always worked very hard against me a) because I have always supported the equal opportunity (no race or gender based preference giving) plank in the Republican Party platform and b) because I have always opposed age discrimination.)
(FROM THE ARTICLE: Iowa 4th District Rep. Steve King on Friday twice declared that diversity is not an American strength and endorsed a European leader’s view that “mixing cultures” leads to a lower quality of life. In a tweet, King linked to a Voice of Europe story that quoted Hungarian Prime Minister Victor Orban as saying, ‘Mixing cultures will not lead to a higher quality of life but a lower one.'” King, a conservative Republican and leading critic of U.S. immigration policies, followed with a second tweet, “Assimilation has become a dirty word to the multiculturalist Left. Assimilation, not diversity, is our American strength.” The social media posts were King’s latest take on the cultural shifts happening in Europe and how they intersect with U.S. culture. The Kiron Republican has long contended that immigrant groups are best served by blending in strongly, or assimilating, into American culture. It was a topic he raised again in March, during the time after he tweeted about culture again.)


— Spread the swamp? Trump administration wants to move government offices out of Washington – Evan Halper (DIERSEN: Ever-increasingly, people hate past, present, and future federal employees. How strongly do you hate past, present, and future federal employees?)
(FROM THE ARTICLE: Amid the talk of draining swamps, restoring political might to blue-collar America and turning off the spigot of taxpayer cash that showers Washington, a familiar battle cry is ricocheting through this city: Move the bureaucrats out. It has the ring of a Trumpian fantasy. Dislodge arms of the federal government from Washington and reattach them in faraway places, spreading the wealth generated by these well-paid agency workforces and forcing senior bureaucrats to face the people they affect. But the idea has established populist roots that spread across party lines, and they are reemerging at this unique political moment.)


— How politicians use religion to promote goals – Scott Reeder (DIERSEN: What do you say to politicians who hint/imply/argue/shout that Jesus is a liberal Democrat/Libertarian/Green who promotes dependency on government, dependency on charity, LGBTQ activity, abortion, mass/illegal immigration, booze, gambling, pot, and other vices, race and gender based preference giving, age discrimination, patronage, political affiliation discrimination, abolition of the First and Second Amendments, and even worse things?)


— White House lacks ‘top political operative’ ahead of 2018 elections – ABC Radio (DIERSEN: Who are the top political operatives in your municipality, in your township/ward, in your county, and in Illinois? Who do they promote? Who do they destroy?)


— Starlets Smile for Amnesty in Elite’s Stealth Campaign for Cheap Labor – NEIL MUNRO (DIERSEN: All my critics/opponents, all their operatives, and all their dupes want cheap labor.)


— NFL Tickets Fall to an Incredible $4 Apiece – CALEB HULL


— The Scoundrel Theory of American Politics The idea that a candidate’s character doesn’t matter is pervasive and pernicious. – Greg Weiner (DIERSEN: How much do you know about the character of the Republicans who represent you and/or who want to represent you in your municipality, in your township/ward, in your county, and in Illinois? I know a tremendous amount about the character of Republicans who represent me and/or who want to represent me in Wheaton, in Milton Township, in DuPage County, and in Illinois. I should write a book about them. How they, their operatives, and their dupes treat me is extremely revealing.)
— Under New Tax Plan, the Cost of Aging Could Rise – Ron Lieber (DIERSEN: Last year, my aunt had $78,213 in medical and dental expenses, and $74,050 of that was deductible. Last year, my wife and I had $21,433 in medical and dental expenses, and $13,859 of that was deductible.)
(FROM THE ARTICLE: In the coming days, a small group of Republicans will meet in Washington to try to settle a simple question: Should their revised tax bill eliminate a deduction for medical expenses and take away thousands of dollars each year from many people who are sick and, often, old? The two competing tax bills that will form the basis of an attempt at compromise over the coming weeks, one from the House of Representatives and one from the Senate, answer the question differently. The Senate bill would keep a deduction for medical expenses intact. The House bill would kill it off entirely. The more money that people had to spend this year, the more they would lose next year if the House prevails and the deduction disappears.)
— Tax Changes Are Coming Next Year, but You Can Plan for Them Now – Paul Sullivan
— Liberal Activists to Democrats: Protect Young Immigrants or Shut Down Government – Yamiche Alcindor and Thomas Kaplan (DIERSEN: All my critics/opponents, all their operatives, and all their dupes want cheap labor.)
— DIERSEN HEADLINE: Liberals promote liberalism.
— How Some States Are Helping First-Time Home Buyers – Ann Carrns (DIERSEN: What helped you buy your first home? The following helped me buy my first home, a new town home in University Park in September of 1972 when I was 24 years old: a) my working for IRS since June of 1971 and earning $54,864/year in today’s dollars, b) my having 49 months of federal seniority (15 IRS and 34 Post Office), c) my working part-time for the Firestone Store in Chicago Heights, d) my not having any debts, e) my owning a 1972 Corvette and a 1962 Chevy BelAir, f) my having earned a bachelor’s degree in management from NIU in August of 1970, g) my taking graduate business courses at Loyola, and h) my not being draft bait.)
— For Female Lobbyists, Harassment Often Accompanies Access – Trip Gabriel and Julie Bosman
— Lost in Translation? Pope Ponders an Update to Lord’s Prayer – Elisabetta Povoledo, Laurie Goodstein and Alan Cowell (DIERSEN: My critics/opponents, their operatives, and their dupes focus on leading people into temptation. They promote dependency on government, dependency on charity, LGBTQ activity, abortion, mass/illegal immigration, booze, gambling, pot, and other vices, race and gender based preference giving, age discrimination, patronage, political affiliation discrimination, abolition of the First and Second Amendment, and even worse things. They crow that I am no longer a TAPROOT Republicans of Illinois chairman, Wheaton Chamber of Commerce Government Affairs Committee member, Milton Township Republican Central Committee webmaster, Illinois Center Right Coalition Steering Committee member, American Association of Political Consultants Midwest Chapter board member, GAO employee, etc.)
(FROM THE ARTICLE: It has been a question of theological debate and liturgical interpretation for years, and now Pope Francis has joined the discussion: Does the Lord’s Prayer, Christendom’s resonant petition to the Almighty, need an update? In a new television interview, Pope Francis said the common rendering of one line in the prayer — “lead us not into temptation” — was “not a good translation” from ancient texts. “Do not let us fall into temptation,” he suggested, might be better because God does not lead people into temptation; Satan does. “A father doesn’t do that,” the pope said. “He helps you get up right away. What induces into temptation is Satan.” In essence, the pope said, the prayer, from the Book of Matthew, is asking God, “When Satan leads us into temptation, You please, give me a hand.”)


— 2018 Ford Mustang: Best sports car buy in town? – Charles Fleming


— Ready to Retire? Here’s a Pre-Flight Checklist Three questions to help you determine if you’re on the right track – Anne Tergesen (DIERSEN: Have you saved enough to retire? Using this formula, I need at least $1,137,725 to retire. 80% of my $122,991 ending salary in today’s dollars is $98,393. Subtract my $50,856 pension and my $2,028 Social Security and you get $45,509. Dividing $45,509 by 4% is $1,137,725 and by 3% is $1,516,967.)

(FROM THE ARTICLE: 1. Have I saved enough? With some simple math, it’s possible to assess retirement readiness without resorting to online calculators that produce “dramatically different results,” says Wade Pfau, a professor of retirement income at the American College of Financial Services in Bryn Mawr, Pa. The first step is to go to the Social Security website to get an estimate of how much income you will receive. This tells you what your monthly payout is likely to be if you claim benefits at 62, 70 and full retirement age, which is 66 for those born between 1943 and 1954. (The benefit will be lower if you claim before full retirement age and higher if you claim after.) Also, ask current and past employers for an estimate of any pension you are eligible to receive. If you suspect you may have left a pension behind at a previous employer that’s defunct or changed its name, free help is available from sources including the Labor Department and the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. Then figure out your retirement spending needs, including taxes and premiums for Medicare Parts B and D, which cover doctor visits and prescription drugs, respectively. If you aren’t sure what you might spend, use the 80% rule. It assumes that retirees can get by on about 80% of what they earned while working because they no longer need to commute or save for retirement and frequently wind up in a lower tax bracket. Using the rule, a couple with a $100,000 annual income would need a retirement income of $80,000. The next step is to deduct from that $80,000 your expected Social Security and pension benefits, plus guaranteed income from any annuities you have. If you are entitled to $35,000 a year in Social Security but nothing from a pension or annuity, for example, you would need savings to supply the remaining $45,000. Mr. Pfau suggests dividing that $45,000 by 4%, which represents the 4% “safe” inflation-adjusted withdrawal rate that historically has ensured U.S. retirees a high probability of never running out of money. The result, $1.125 million, is the amount you will need. (With stocks at records and bond yields low, Mr. Pfau says it may be safer to use a 3% withdrawal rate.)

Author: David Diersen

The opinions that I express in GOPUSA ILLINOIS emails are based on experience that I have gained doing many things since 1948. I base my opinions on what I learned a) working for the federal government for almost 30 years -- Post Office 1966-1969, IRS 1971-1980, and GAO 1980-1997, serving on the Executive Committee of the Association of Government Accountants Chicago Chapter 1983-1996, and being a union member while I worked for the Post Office and IRS; b) earning an MBA from Loyola in 1976, a masters degree in accounting from DePaul in 1980, and a masters degree in financial markets and trading from IIT in 1997; c) passing the CPA examination on my first attempt in 1979 and passing the Certified Internal Auditor examination on my first attempt in 1981; c) serving as a Republican Precinct Committeeman since 1999, the GOPUSA Illinois Editor since 2000, the TAPROOT Republicans of Illinois Chairman 2005-2012, a member of the 2008 Illinois Republican Party (IRP) Platform and Resolutions Committee, a Wheaton Chamber of Commerce Government Affairs Committee member 2003-2011, the Milton Township Republican Central Committee webmaster 2008-2010 and 2000-2004, an Illinois Center Right Coalition Steering Committee member 2003-2007, and an American Association of Political Consultants Midwest Chapter board member 2001-2004; d) attending the 2000, 2004, 2008, 2012, and 2016 IRP State Conventions as a delegate; e) being the subject of a nasty 4-page article in the February 1978 issue of Money Magazine; f) pursing litigation including Diersen v. GAO and Diersen v. Chicago Car Exchange; g) being married since 1978; h) living in Crete 1948-1972, in University Park 1972-1976, in Chicago 1976-1978, and in DuPage County, Milton Township, and Wheaton since 1978; and i) being baptized, raised, and confirmed as a Missouri Synod Lutheran.