Thursday, April 28, 2011
Wednesday our friend Louise, Dan and I drove to Lancaster, PA to visit the Charles Demuth house museum there. We enjoyed our visit to the small museum, we had a nice lunch, and we were surprised at how beautiful and historic Lancaster is.
Sunday, April 24, 2011
Photo: Macy's Philadelphia hosts an annual flower show in the Grand Court
Former Reagan budget director David Stockman makes good sense in today's New York Times. Neither President Obama nor Representative Ryan have made courageous proposals to address the national debt. Taxes need to go up for just about everybody, and the rich should not get either Social Security (they don't need it,) or free Medicare (they should pay for it because they can afford it.) Means testing both programs and tax increases for the middle and upper classes are essential if we are to get our country's fiscal house in order.
IT is obvious that the nation’s desperate fiscal condition requires higher taxes on the middle class, not just the richest 2 percent. Likewise, entitlement reform requires means-testing the giant Social Security and Medicare programs, not merely squeezing the far smaller safety net in areas like Medicaid and food stamps.
Unfortunately, in proposing tax increases only for the very rich, President Obama has denied the first of these fiscal truths, while Representative Paul D. Ryan, the chairman of the House Budget Committee, has contradicted the second by putting the entire burden of entitlement reform on the poor. The resulting squabble is not only deepening the fiscal stalemate, but also bringing us dangerously close to class war.
Friday, April 22, 2011
Sunday, April 10, 2011
Photo: A neat place in the "meat rack" in between Cherry Grove and The Pines
Memo to the president: You show leadership by producing a good economy, not hailing a compromise that will actually hobble the economy.
The frustration that many of us on the left feel with Obama has been exacerbated by his failure to exercise leadership in the recent battle over the budget. The president should be using the bully pulpit he has to argue forcefully for shared sacrifice. Cuts alone are not the answer. Tax cuts for millionaires must end. Tax rates for the wealthy class must go up. They have to pay their share. Obama knows this but he's rather focus on getting re-elected than exercising decisive leadership and pushing for traditional Democratic Party principles. When George W. Bush was president, he fought for the principles that his right wing base held dear. But Obama refuses to get into the fight, preferring instead to be seen as a mediator. This is why the Republicans won this round over the budget in spite of the fact that we have a Democratic Party controlled senate and a Democrat as President. We need leadership from Obama. Will we ever see it?
Saturday, April 9, 2011
Tuesday, April 5, 2011
Monday, April 4, 2011
The shoreline on the bay side of Fire Island near Cherry Grove continues to show signs of erosion. This is the East end of the Grove near the entrance to the Meat Rack. The walkway and benches are sinking. The nice overlook platform that used to exist just West of the Grove on the bay is no more. All there are now are steps going down to the sand and water. Nearby trees are falling into the bay.
Bradley surveys the new construction of the walkway in the Sunken Forest on Fire Island. I'm surprised that there is money in the budget for this sort of thing. The Republicans want to privitize Medicare, thereby ending the greatest legacy of Lyndon Johnson's "Great Society." Shame on Obama and the Democrats if they let this happen!