Decision 2008

Everything that doesn't fit anywhere else!

Postby mnp13 » May 18th, 2010, 11:58 pm

airwalk wrote:I completely believe that entitlement programs are the exact problem. People get in and over time, are beaten to the point they can no longer get out, they can't see a way...and that is exactly what those that keep reinventing those programs want. If you are beholding to someone or something, you don't stand up to them...if you see no avenue, you don't abandon the only route you can see.

See my comments are not about the poor PEOPLE...they are about the programs that keep them there. They are not a judgement about the average person ... they are judgement on those that maintain and perpetuate those programs. I am appalled by those that want to take from me and give to everyone else as a manner of "fixing" poverty. It doesn't work, it never has.

YES.

It's not the people, though at a certain point, it is because at some point... people are responsible for their own choices in life.

Like making babies, don't even get me started on THAT. If you can't afford to feed one without assistance, then please tell me how you can afford to feed five and why on earth are you still making more? And don't tell me that it's a birth control issue, not doing it is free, and everyone knows where babies come from. We all have the internets. :wink:

But I digress...

Poor people need a hand UP, not a hand OUT. But like you said, the people who keep those programs going have a vested interested in keeping poor people stuck. And they do. I am 100% behind social programs. When people need help, they need help and they should get it. When and how much they need... but need is not want.

Every fall, my town is over run by apple pickers. I'm quite sure there are more than a few illegals, there always are... but why are there migrant workers here picking apples, when there are thousands of people on welfare 20 miles away? For 8 weeks my county has more work than we can handle, so MUCH work that we bring in hundreds and hundreds of people to do the work... from out of the area. When that money could stay RIGHT HERE.
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Postby TheRedQueen » May 19th, 2010, 12:08 am

See my comments are not about the poor PEOPLE...they are about the programs that keep them there. They are not a judgement about the average person ... they are judgement on those that maintain and perpetuate those programs. I am appalled by those that want to take from me and give to everyone else as a manner of "fixing" poverty. It doesn't work, it never has.


What kind of program should there be then? What would you do to "fix" poverty instead. How else would it work? I'm not trying to be bitchy...I'm really curious as to what you'd suggest for how else we could run these programs...

John has a disability...a major one, and he's worked very little in his life...his SSD does not cover living expenses...and he's getting the run around from medicare right now. He depends on these programs...he'd be homeless without programs that help by giving him money. :| He honestly has no choice in the matter...he'd much rather be working, trust me. ;)
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Postby airwalk » May 19th, 2010, 11:48 am

Well Erin, for example...welfare, aid to dependent children, state run health programs, child care assistance - often are all rolled into a single package.

If a parent has children and finds themselves in need of assistance because of circumstances not of their own making..meaning you didn't buy a house you can't afford, you didn't risk it all on a get rich quick scheme...but have lost your job, sustained an injury, ... divorced and have never worked .. those types of things (please do not read that list as all inclusive) but you see the gist.

Right now if that parent should be so bold as to take a minimum wage job to get started..they start losing benefits in a hurry. Health care...gone, child care assistance..gone, food stamps...cut to the quick.

It isn't very hard to figure out in any given area, what a reasonable budget for a family to live on is...(and I do mean live not simply exist). Kids have to have shoes and clothes, not necessarily the hot brands..but reasonable. Rent must be paid, food purchased, vaccinations and doctors visits covered, children to day care..and even an ice cream cone once in a while.

So if parent gets a job, rather than cutting everything to the quick...how much do they make and then reduce subsidies accordingly to allow the family to continue to live. As money goes up, subsidies go down, but in a controlled manner that allows families to actually improve quality of life. That is motivation to continue to work and improve. So maybe instead of volume shoes tennies...you can afford the once in a while Nike's. Or an ice cream cone once a week instead of once a month. Or a movie ...instead the current system ensures that once folks begin making any money, the things they count on the most are instantly removed...pretty much assuring they can't remain working and have to go back on government subsidy.

If someone doesn't have the skills to get a job..then by all means train them, but make it a requirement of receiving assistance. Not a choice a requirement. You have to go to school or enroll in an apprenticeship program. You have to be working towards getting off subsidy.

By no means do I believe it is a majority, but we all know the female that continues to have babies because she gets more $$...if her subsidy was in jeapardy if she didn't get her fanny out of bed every morning and off to school or work..and 8 hours a day...then self image goes up, pride goes up, and time spent in the sack reduces.

I can't even say the politicians .. because I really don't believe that the transitory politician is the benefactor of the subsidy programs, it's the men and women behind those politiicans (the shadows that make policy) don't want people thinking for themselves or having pride or motiviation because then they begin to think and act and then control is lost.

I have a cousin that was involved in a motorcycle accident and is paralyzed from the neck down. Has very little control over his hands and is in a wheelchair - so you see I do have some understanding of John's plight. John and Rick (my cousin) are the folks that truly need assistance. Yet...they are the exact people that keep looking for ways to help themselves. They don't sit around and cry that no one is taking care of them. They don't sit around and wait for the next government handout...they educate themselves, they look for ways to improve their own lives. These are the folks that should receive assistance and again, that assistance should be at a level that allows them to actually live.

They might not live like the Rockefellers...but they should be above an existence level. Unfortunately, the John's of this world are the folks that barely exist..because they think and are motivated.

Just my two cents.
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Postby DemoDick » May 19th, 2010, 12:11 pm

TheRedQueen wrote:What kind of program should there be then? What would you do to "fix" poverty instead. How else would it work? I'm not trying to be bitchy...I'm really curious as to what you'd suggest for how else we could run these programs...


You didn't ask me, but here are my thoughts anyway. :)

I think "fixing" poverty is essentially impossible. There will always be stratification, to some degree. There will always be rich, poor, and every degree of in between, for a number of reasons. It has part of the human experience since we began walking upright. Trying to eliminate it outright is the idea behind Marxism, which has killed over 100 million people in this century...the road to hell and all that. But there is something we can do to truly help the poor and disadvantaged. And it doesn't involve forcing anyone to to anything they don't want to.

People are self-interested as a general rule. They pursue courses of action that benefit themselves in nearly every situation, just like a dog in training. Think of it as the positive reinforcement rule of economics. But at the same time they are self-interested, people are also essentially good and generous. According to the Giving U.S.A. Foundation, in 2008, the worst economic climate since the Great Depression, charitable giving was $307.65 billion dollars. That's billion with a "B". This clearly shows that even when people are taxed to the point of taking their anger to the streets, they still give to the causes they believe in, and they do so in great numbers. The bulk of this, about 75%, comes from individual donors. I haven't seen the demographics, but I'd wager that much cash isn't coming from people who are struggling to survive. It's probably coming from the middle-class and up. But the amount of charitable giving always mirrors the amount of economic prosperity happening in the overarching social system.

Now imagine for a moment what charitable giving would look like if government was not in direct competition for the business of charities, and could not back up its collection efforts with force and imprisonment. Imagine what people would give to charities if they were free to make as much money as possible and only had to pay voluntary taxes on the services they directly use. Imagine the spike in economic activity and the overall prosperity that would happen if suddenly the free market was truly free.

When capitalism is unleashed and people are free to pursue their own rational self-interest, the benefits are incalculabe.

John has a disability...a major one, and he's worked very little in his life...his SSD does not cover living expenses...and he's getting the run around from medicare right now. He depends on these programs...he'd be homeless without programs that help by giving him money. :| He honestly has no choice in the matter...he'd much rather be working, trust me. ;)


Having met John, I am sure you are correct. I am also sure that in the system I described above, he would benefit much more than he currently does, not only by way of financial assistance and economic freedom, but by way of economic opportunities in the form of potential employment (there would be many more types of jobs in a free market system than what we currently have). Government-run programs are nearly always less efficient at getting benefits to the people who need them than private charities, as administrators and bureaucrats pursue rational self-interest like everyone else.

When I look at my gross income vs. my net income, I am very upset that I am limited in what I can contribute to the causes I believe in. I am also upset that I have little to no say in how the money taken from me is used.

If it were up to me, people in John's situation would get first dibs on assistance. That is right and proper and decent. He shouldn't have to jump through hoops to get the help he needs. I think the fact that he does illustrates the problems inherent with expecting government to fill this role.

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Postby airwalk » May 19th, 2010, 1:36 pm

If it were up to me, people in John's situation would get first dibs on assistance. That is right and proper and decent. He shouldn't have to jump through hoops to get the help he needs. I think the fact that he does illustrates the problems inherent with expecting government to fill this role.


Exactly.
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Postby SvcDogSawyer » May 19th, 2010, 6:40 pm

If the government didn't make everyone pay, how many people would actually give to charity if they had the choice? and would that charity actually give money to individauls or would most of the donations go to research?

If the government didn't make everyone pay, how many people would donate to a welfare type org thinking that a lot of people abuse it now? What happens to the people that really need it and aren't abusing the system? Sure, you say they can just get a job, what about those of us that can't work? If there weren't gov. assist. programs, I, like most people getting assistance, would be spending most of my time wondering if enough people had donated to the group that helps me, did people buy a house, a car, big screen tv this month, did their kid just start college, is there going to be enough for them to help me buy food this month.

If welfare were to be cut, they better use all that money to build more jails. Yes, the ones that abuse welfare would finally have to get off their asses and go to work and stop having kids to get more money. But the ones that really needed welfare would probably end up in jail or in the a card board box. I'm sure a lot of those people would commit a crime just so they could go to prison for food and shelter.

How do you decide which gov programs to cut? How do you decide which group of people to screw over?
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Postby hugapitbull » May 19th, 2010, 7:34 pm

John, my spin isn't that they cut assistance programs, instead find a way to police them, stop the abuse and make more available for those who need it. Identify where the loopholes are and begin to close them, make it difficult for someone to abuse the system without penalizing those who need it. And enforce a penalty for anyone identified abusing the system.

I, too, doubt that if given a choice there would be enough donated to help the ones who need it. There are too many distractions in life today, and as you mentioned - who would administer the program? That is just a scary thought.
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Postby mnp13 » May 19th, 2010, 8:47 pm

I think there is a certain amount of tax that should be mandatory, and I think there is a certain amount of "social responsibility." However, what is going on right now is WAAAAAAY over board.

Things that everyone benefits from - roads, police, fire, hospitals, water, sewer, power, education, basic health care etc - everyone pays, everyone benefits, it works. In the case of disability, in my opinion, it's not a question, you shouldn't have to struggle. Frankly, do you get to live in a mansion? No, but good quality housing and an appropriate vehicle and appropriate care should be a given. For God's sake, we don't live in a third world country, it's sick that you have to deal with this.

Able bodied people living on social services are a different matter. THAT is the issue here. Free, decent child care so that parents can work and not spend most of their check on day care. Incentives to get off of the system, not stay on it.
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Postby DemoDick » May 19th, 2010, 9:51 pm

SvcDogSawyer wrote:If the government didn't make everyone pay, how many people would actually give to charity if they had the choice?


There's no way to know for sure. But based on all of the available economic indicators, as government decreases taxation and economic systems become favorable, charitable giving goes up. And the reverse is true as well. Also, I'd wager that aside from the ethical concerns with taking money by force, a voluntary, private charity system would also be more efficient (i.e. getting a larger percentage of benefits to the people that need them) than a government-run system. While government loves to hide what it is doing, charities require transparency.

and would that charity actually give money to individauls or would most of the donations go to research?


That would be up to the charities and research organizations themselves. I would argue that the end recipients deserve a larger say in how funds are allocated than is currently possible with multiple layers of government bureaucracy.

If the government didn't make everyone pay, how many people would donate to a welfare type org thinking that a lot of people abuse it now?


Again, there's no way to know for sure. But the indicators are favorable towards a charitable system, and at least the choice to give would be made freely.

What happens to the people that really need it and aren't abusing the system? Sure, you say they can just get a job, what about those of us that can't work? If there weren't gov. assist. programs, I, like most people getting assistance, would be spending most of my time wondering if enough people had donated to the group that helps me, did people buy a house, a car, big screen tv this month, did their kid just start college, is there going to be enough for them to help me buy food this month.


I understand what you are saying. Like I said before, even with a crushing tax system currently in place and some of the worst economic conditions since the Great Depression, charitable giving was over $300 billion in 2008, mostly from individual donors. I have faith that human beings will take care of each other without government forcing them to do it. I believe that they should be free to decide for themselves, and that if allowed, they will be much more generous than they currently are.

If welfare were to be cut, they better use all that money to build more jails. Yes, the ones that abuse welfare would finally have to get off their asses and go to work and stop having kids to get more money. But the ones that really needed welfare would probably end up in jail or in the a card board box. I'm sure a lot of those people would commit a crime just so they could go to prison for food and shelter.


As entitlement programs are gradually eliminated, the able-bodied will have a choice to make as to how they will continue to fund their lives. Quite honestly, there is a LOT of work out there. But I know far too many people who will have another child to obtain more benefits instead of using birth control and getting a job as a janitor. That garbage has to stop. Those who cannot work should be the very first people eligible for assistance. Those who can work should not be coddled.

How do you decide which gov programs to cut? How do you decide which group of people to screw over?


No one has to be screwed over. I'm arguing that under the current system, everyone is getting screwed in some way, for the following reasons (and there are lots of others). First, people are not free to donate to what entities that they wish to. Their income is taken and they have little to no say in how it is handed out. Frequently it is mishandled and wasted, and this is covered up. If they try to opt out and not pay, they are imprisoned. That's not freedom. Second, charities are directly competing with governments for funding ,and their competition can and will use force to collect. The economics of this are obviously not good for charities. Third, the overall system of seizure and redistribution actually discourages charitable giving by absorbing funds and creating an air of cynicism in which taxpayers assume that everyone recieving benefits is cheating the system.

I have every reason to believe that people are garbage. But I don't. I believe that people are good and kind and will take care of each other, even if they aren't forced to.

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Postby airwalk » May 19th, 2010, 10:11 pm

SvcDogSawyer wrote:If the government didn't make everyone pay, how many people would actually give to charity if they had the choice? and would that charity actually give money to individauls or would most of the donations go to research?

If the government didn't make everyone pay, how many people would donate to a welfare type org thinking that a lot of people abuse it now? What happens to the people that really need it and aren't abusing the system? Sure, you say they can just get a job, what about those of us that can't work? If there weren't gov. assist. programs, I, like most people getting assistance, would be spending most of my time wondering if enough people had donated to the group that helps me, did people buy a house, a car, big screen tv this month, did their kid just start college, is there going to be enough for them to help me buy food this month.

If welfare were to be cut, they better use all that money to build more jails. Yes, the ones that abuse welfare would finally have to get off their asses and go to work and stop having kids to get more money. But the ones that really needed welfare would probably end up in jail or in the a card board box. I'm sure a lot of those people would commit a crime just so they could go to prison for food and shelter.

How do you decide which gov programs to cut? How do you decide which group of people to screw over?


John I think that's the point most folks are making...no one advocates for the elimination of support programs...but many of us do advocate for making sure those programs are helping rather than hurting. If someone is able bodied (and we all know some that are - my sister for example) that choose not to work because it's inconvenient and hard and they actually have to be accountable...tough cookies baby. Cowboy up or choose to live under a bridge.

For those that need a temporary hand up..by all means give it and most assuredly do it in a manner that permits them to see the light at the end of the tunnel and motivates them to be self reliant...instead the system is set up to keep those people locked in the system by cutting them off every time they try.

For those that are disabled and unable to work...that is what the systems should be for. I agree with Michelle..do you (they) get a mansion..nope...but decent housing that is reliable and clean and no in a rat infested neighborhood that has access...yes. You get help to get an appropriate vehicle and health care. The basics and you get it without having to wrangle every penny.

I don't think anyone here is advocating for screwing over anyone...well unless you count those that are screwing the system....them probably yes.
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Postby amazincc » May 19th, 2010, 10:13 pm

DemoDick wrote:
I have every reason to believe that people are garbage. But I don't. I believe that people are good and kind and will take care of each other, even if they aren't forced to.

Demo Dick



"Especially"... especially if they aren't forced to.
I believe that, too.
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Postby SvcDogSawyer » May 20th, 2010, 10:35 am

OK, so I guess we actually agree. Get rid of, no, policing programs, yes.
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Postby HappyChick » May 20th, 2010, 11:43 am

mnp13 wrote:
Like making babies, don't even get me started on THAT. If you can't afford to feed one without assistance, then please tell me how you can afford to feed five and why on earth are you still making more? And don't tell me that it's a birth control issue, not doing it is free, and everyone knows where babies come from. We all have the internets. :wink:


The medical card pays for having those babies. You don't get a bill when you leave the hospital with that new baby. WIC pays to feed them while they are babies and free school lunches and breakfasts take care of two meals a day. Food stamps take care of the other meals. Decent clothes can be found at WalMart, the Salvation Army, yard sales, etc. Don't get me wrong, just because I state this doesn't mean I am against it when needed. My grandchildren have been taken care of in this manner and I thank everyone for their contributions. (FYI, my daughter is trying hard to jump off the welfare wagon, but that is a story for another time.) The having babies issue goes far deeper than welfare. It is about young women with no self-esteem and little education, deadbeat and absent dads, and patriarchy at it's worst among other things. Our government does need a complete overhaul. Our SOCIETY needs a complete overhaul too.

I'm a tax payer and I will gladly pay taxes to feed children and help folks who are not able to work because of disabilities. However, like many others here, I am totally pissed off when my tax payer money is spent recklessly. I also believe that President Obama (who I voted for) really messed up giving all that money for bailouts. I would have been much happier if he would have given the money to the workers we were told would lose their jobs than having that money end up in the pockets of the already rich administrators at those businesses who f'ed up everything in the first place. Or maybe he could have used the money to start new needed businesses that would have employed those workers who would have become unemployed. I don't know, but I'll bet the bailout money could have been put to a much better use.
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Postby DemoDick » May 20th, 2010, 12:18 pm

SvcDogSawyer wrote:OK, so I guess we actually agree. Get rid of, no, policing programs, yes.


Sure. I would never argue that benefit programs should be completely eliminated in every form. That's insane. Right-wingers are pushing the idea that all of these social programs started with FDR, when in reality there have been bread lines in every human society all the way back to the agrarian revolution. I'm just opposed to government implementing and overseing these programs, as government only does one thing consistently well: grow bigger and more powerful.

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Postby DemoDick » May 20th, 2010, 5:55 pm

HappyChick wrote:I'm a tax payer and I will gladly pay taxes to feed children and help folks who are not able to work because of disabilities. However, like many others here, I am totally pissed off when my tax payer money is spent recklessly. I also believe that President Obama (who I voted for) really messed up giving all that money for bailouts. I would have been much happier if he would have given the money to the workers we were told would lose their jobs than having that money end up in the pockets of the already rich administrators at those businesses who f'ed up everything in the first place. Or maybe he could have used the money to start new needed businesses that would have employed those workers who would have become unemployed. I don't know, but I'll bet the bailout money could have been put to a much better use.


Giving that money away to anyone, corporations or taxpayers is basically sticking a Band-Aid on a sucking chest wound. The bailout money never should have left the private sector in the first place. The important thing to remember is that there is no such thing as government money. Money has to be produced in the private sector in order for government to take it as tax revenue. When government overburdens the market, it disincentivizes production and encourages people and corporations to hide the wealth they do have. Then government has to increase taxes to generate revenue to fund itself and further damage the market. It's cyclical and destructive. And unfortunately our currency is no longer backed with precious metals (hasn't been since 1971) so it is very vulnerable to currency market forces. When we run out of money, the Fed simply prints more. It's actually fiat currency.

The reason that GM and Chrysler failed is a very good lesson in basic economics. In a free-market system, when you compete against companies who produce a better product at a lower cost and consumers preferentially buy them, you either change your production and marketing strategy or you eventually fail. In our system (which is actually a mixed economy and not a free-market), you fail, unless you have enough political pull to secure bailout money from the Fed. Has anyone actually looked at the numbers that the Fed has handed out to corporations during these bailouts? The amount that they have been given is enough to basically remove all mortgage liabilities for every homeowner in this country. Think about that for a second. Why did Big Auto get bailed out when taxpayers were told to basically told to pound sand? Do you guys really think the Democrats are standing up for the "common man"? Is anyone? I'm afraid we're going to have to do it for ourselves during the next round of elections. I only hope that it's not to late to undo the damage, and I suspect that it may very well be. Unfortunately, the Democrats are currently holding most of the seats of power in the national arena so they are going to take the lion's share of punishment for this mess, when so-called Republicans are just as much to blame. I fear that people are going to go to the polls and just vote for anyone who doesn't have a "D" by their name. That isn't exactly a recipe for informed elections.

The housing bubble, Big Auto's failure, a bonfire of a national debt/deficit, devalued currency, inflation, and eventually hyperinflation are the inevitable result of the State trying to over-manage the economy and markets instead of allowing them to manage themselves through the ebb and flow of market forces. This isn't Monopoly, this is real life, and when you treat currency like play money, you hurt a lot of people.

I think that the Libertarians could offer a real alternative to the voters of this country. Unfortunately, most of them seem about as even-keeled as Sirhan Sirhan on an LSD trip.

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Postby Pit♥bull » May 22nd, 2010, 3:23 pm

Philosophical note from the Czech Republic:

"The danger to America is not Barack Obama but a citizenry capable of entrusting a man like him with the presidency. It will be easier to limit and undo the follies of an Obama presidency than to restore the necessary common sense and good judgment to a depraved electorate willing to have such a man for their president. The problem is much deeper and far more serious than Mr. Obama, who is a mere symptom of what ails them. Blaming the prince of the fools should not blind anyone to the vast confederacy of fools that made him their prince. The republic can survive a Barack Obama, who is, after all, merely a fool. It is less likely to survive a multitude of fools such as those who made him their president."
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Postby Pit♥bull » September 27th, 2010, 8:00 am

Still at it two years later :(

This was from a parade in La Grange, Texas. (Best little whorehouse in Texas)
Hope you city folks know what they are sitting in or it won't be funny to you....

Hint



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Postby mnp13 » September 27th, 2010, 9:10 am

lol

Can't wait to see him gone...
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Postby PetieMarie22 » September 27th, 2010, 11:02 am

:thumbsup: Agreed! :anyMinute:
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Postby Pit♥bull » October 12th, 2010, 11:34 am

A pretty little girl named Suzy was standing on the sidewalk in front of her home. Next to her was a basket containing a number of tiny creatures; in her hand was a sign announcing

FREE KITTENS.

Suddenly a line of big black cars pulled up beside her.

Out of the lead car stepped a tall, grinning man.

"Hi there little girl, I'm President Obama.
What do you have in the basket?" he asked.

"Kittens," little Suzy said.

"How old are they?" asked Obama.

Suzy replied, "They're so young,
their eyes aren't even open yet."

"And what kind of kittens are they?"

"Democrats," answered Suzy with a smile.

Obama was delighted. As soon as he returned to his car, he called his PR chief and told him about the little girl and the kittens.

Recognizing the perfect photo op, the two men agreed that the president should return the next day;

and in front of the assembled media,
have the girl talk about her discerning kittens.

So the next day, Suzy was again standing on the sidewalk with her basket of "FREE KITTENS," when another motorcade pulled up, this time followed by vans from

ABC, NBC, CBS and CNN.

Cameras and audio equipment were quickly set up, then Obama got out of his limo and walked over to little Suzy.

"Hello, again," he said, "I'd love it if you would tell all my friends out there what kind of kittens you're giving away."

"Yes sir," Suzy said. "They're Republicans."

Taken by surprise, the president stammered, "But... but... yesterday, you told me they were DEMOCRATS."



Little Suzy smiled and said, "I know. But today, they have their eyes open"


Pit♥bull
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