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Everything posted by Gator

  1. It's been like this ever since wall street bought our government two decades ago
  2. While the title specifies retirees the article paints an increasingly worse picture for military families. Welcome back to the clinton nineties where there's no operational or training budget and families are stuck with rising costs while military pay and allowances don't keep up with the cost of living. Once again servicemembers are going to be forced into making the very hard choice between serving their country or taking care of their families. We lost so many of our best and brightest back then because their children became ill and civilian medicine offered much better services than military medicine could provide. This is what happens when civilians who never spent a day in service run DoD. The sad truth is it's only going to get worse because the 2018 budget will once again make a move to dismantle the commissary system even more than it is now while continually raising prices to justify their doing so. Sheer stupidity to try and balance DoD's budget using servicemember's and their families while DoD itself wastes billions on recurring no bid defense contracts and severely over priced programs that don't work like F-35 and littoral combat ship. Stupid is as stupid does. Budget Proposal Includes Major Retiree Tricare Fee Hikes The new Defense Department budget proposal for 2017 sent today to Congress drastically increases the cost of healthcare for military retirees under 65 and reorganizes the currentTricare system, but otherwise includes few other major military family program reforms. Under the new proposal the primary three Tricare options -- Tricare Prime, Tricare Standard and the services used by retirees -- would be combined into two basic plans. Like the current Tricare Prime and Standard options, the newly minted Tricare Select and Tricare Choice would continue to offer free services at Military Treatment Facilities (MTFs) and require co-pays for services from in-network civilian providers. Like Tricare Prime, Tricare Select would require users to receive referrals for specialty care, while Tricare Choice would operate like Tricare Standard, allowing users to self-refer. Active duty families and retirees could choose between the two plans and pay graduated fees between $20 and $250 for non-MTF care, depending on the service provided. As in the current Tricare Prime system, active-duty families stationed in remote areas far away from an MTF would be permitted to see in-network civilian providers without paying additional fees. The major price changes are reserved for retirees. Under the new plan those users would be forced to pay a yearly enrollment fee through an open-enrollment type process regardless of which Tricare option they choose. Currently, retirees using Tricare Prime pay $282.60 per year for a single person or $565.20 for a family, while Standard requires no enrollment fee. The new system, however, would require retirees pay a $350 enrollment fee for individuals or $700 for families for Tricare Select, and $450 for individuals or $900 for families for Tricare Choice. The increases are part of a $524 billion Defense Department budget request. Unlike recent years, the request includes no major commissary or housing allowance reform requests. Instead, those programs will continue to be impacted by legislation already in motion, including a push to change raise and lower commissary prices on a regional basis and plans to decrease Basic Allowance for Housing each year until it covers only 95 percent of troops' costs. Tricare deductibles would also increase under the proposal. Active duty families under E4 would pay $100 for an individual or $200 for families, while all other users would pay $300 for an individual or $600 for a family. Catastrophic caps would also increase, landing at $1,500 for active duty families and $4,000 for retirees. Future Tricare for Life users would also experience cost increases. Unlike current enrollees, newly qualified beneficiaries over 65 would be required to pay an annual fee of .5 percent of their gross retired pay for 2017, capped at $150 for most users and $200 for those who retired as flag officers. Those fees would increase to 2 percent by 2021, with a cap of $632 for most users and $842 for flag officers. Pharmacy fees would also continue their gradual increase. Currently a 30-day supply of generic medication at a retail pharmacy is $10 while a brand-name drug is $24. Those prices would increase gradually to $14 and $46 by 2026. 90-day supplies filled through the mail order pharmacy are currently free for generics, $20 for brand name options and $49 for non-formulary. Those prices would increase to $14, $46 and $92 respectively by 2026.
  3. Well said and I apologize if I came on too strong my Brother. My bad. Just kills me to see us all being played against each other. This is insanity where we're all losing.
  4. What are we supposed to believe then? Is the German government just trying to cover this up to avoid further violence or was she actually assaulted? There's so many reports of this I'm inclined to believe she was as this point. For the sake of humanity I sure pray I'm wrong.
  5. Reid is in bed with China over building a solar farm to provide energy to Las Vegas which is what the Bundy incident was really all about so if this isn't the pot calling the kettle black I don't know what is. They're all crooks.
  6. Oh my God. A great victory? Wall street has sold the liberals that ACA is their idea when in truth it absolves companies of providing health care to workers by placing the burden of health insurance on the worker thus freeing up more money for investor's profits. To add insult to injury wall street is using none other than IRS as their enforcement tool so it doesn't cost them a single penny to force you into purchasing their inferior insurance products. Now wall street is union busting which takes away your ability to collectively bargain your fair wage which frees up even more money for investor's profits. Bottom line: You're making less money AND you're being forced into paying more for health insurance while receiving less than desirable services. All hail the great union busting victory in West by God Virginia where hard working Coal Miners will experience even more medical issues as regulations are continually declining along with their wages. Yes sir, real great victory all right. Now come on and level your personal attacks that blast me for how I don't get it when this whole sick twisted greed driven ambush is as plain as the noses on our faces. How can so many normally intelligent human beings like you be so blind not to see what's really going on here? It's beyond me Brother.
  7. Really good analysis that makes total sense IF the election is rigged ... and I believe it is ... Hillary will win and she'll need the very support exactly as you write ALSO Hillary will need SCOTUS backing her own EO's which of course she'll blame on GOP for blocking her initiatives So the obvious question becomes what are "they" really up to now??? The plot thickens ... This is some really underhanded diabolical type outlandish shit wall street and DC are pulling off if it's true .. and I believe it is Very well done Shin
  8. Fifties under Eisenhower seemed pretty good. Lot of people worked and seemed like most had money even if it wasn't a lot.
  9. No matter how many recounts or explanations anyone gives a lot of us will never trust that election and still question every one since Sam you know I'm a big fan of common sense conservatism and GOP but both hurt our Country big time with their insane antics just to get Bush in the White House on that one. Be that as it may both sides should have backed off and let an independent non political group verify the votes so we all could have lived with it either way. Because that process wasn't allowed to happen voter count integrity has been questioned ever since.
  10. Let's see ... Rubio ... Sanders or clinton? Rubio
  11. People can say whatever they want but too many of us still question how his state magically provided the few hundred winning votes for his brother to win the 2000 election. While I like President Bush I still believe Vice President Al Gore won that election. Millions of us believe it so we'll never allow Jeb anywhere near our Presidency. Ain't gonna happen because no election has been the same since.
  12. DNC pulled Grimes' funding two weeks before the election when she was giving McConnell a real race to unseat him. Even though they claimed they didn't see her winning their actions are very highly suspect given Mitch is one of the good old boys along with our own on capital hill. Our side is just as guilty as their's no matter how any of us try to explain it. We agree that even though Obama has been one of the most unpopular Presidents he will down as one of the greats even though he hasn't been. I will give him due credit for growing into his office and becoming a much better Wartime President than I thought he would. Great job on that one because he's used economics instead of bullets which saves Servicemember's lives so I'm with him on this. However at the same time, Pelosi and her dems are mad at Obama for endorsing a $1.1 trillion spending bill that she says includes unnecessary eliminations of financial regulations and campaign finance rules. Turn out while they were mustering support to get rid of the eliminations Obama was on the phone trying to kill their efforts on behalf of good old JP Morgan, the fine folks who brought us the 2009 crash. We're as dirty as they are.
  13. Not trying to demean them. They just remind me of all the groups that never made it past the garage stage even though they perform in local bars and such.
  14. Would be nice to see us bank it in our own storage tanks like a savings account for times when we're short of oil.
  15. Wonder what she really is holding and even if it's real. We never know on the internet these days.
  16. The Iranian connection is a toss up at best. They've just signed mega billion dollar deals with Russia and China so who really knows where they're going with it.
  17. You're writing in modern day Arabic while Yeshua spoke in Ancient Hebrew and Aramaic which was his native language. This is what you're looking for in Aramaic ... " 'TISHBOOQTAA ALAAHAA" However your assumptive assertion is still correct because Judaism, Christianity and Islam are all three Sons of Abraham so Yeshua would have also spoken in Arabic if he was teaching in these times because that's a predominant language in his homeland now.
  18. January is always a heavy layoff month because businesses let their Christmas seasonal help go Nothing new with this one
  19. Given Navy's successes with rail gun technology more and more practical uses for kinetic energy weapons fired from multiple platforms are now emerging. All that's really left is developing a guidance kit Servicemember's can attach based upon mission requirements. Given this and $.59 cents per shot particle beam weapons it looks like we're finally developing the cheaper lethal technologies we've been looking for. The Pentagon Wants to Use Big Guns to Shoot Down Big Missiles Can howitzers and naval guns shoot down incoming ballistic missiles? The U.S. Secretary of Defense says yes. By Kyle Mizokami Feb 3, 2016 In his speech yesterday on the 2017 Defense Budget, U.S. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter mentioned a second, previously unknown program meant to keep America's technological edge on the battlefield. The program would "turn past offense into future defense," using long-range guns already fielded in large numbers to shoot down ballistic missiles capable of carrying chemical or nuclear warheads. Carter revealed the Pentagon was experimenting with hypervelocity projectiles developed for electromagnetic railguns—currently under development—and adapting them to conventional artillery to shoot down ballistic missiles. The secretary mentioned the Army's 155-millimeterPaladin howitzers as one platform for the artillery projectile, and the Navy's 5-inch guns (or 127-mm) as the other. The novel project will turn U.S. Army field artillery into ballistic missile defenders. Each U.S. Army Armored Brigade Combat Team has a battalion of 18 Paladin howitzers, meaning the platform is already integrated into the structure of heavier Army brigades. There's no mention of whether or not the lighter M777 towed howitzer used by light infantry, airborne, air assault and Stryker brigades is capable of using the new projectile. The M777 is also used by the Marine Corps and allies such as Canada and Australia. Similarly, creating an anti-missile projectile for the Navy's guns will turn every destroyer and cruiser into a ballistic missile defense platform. Many of the Ticonderoga-class cruisers andArleigh Burke-class destroyers are already capable of downing ballistic missiles with the SM-3 interceptor, but this would add a second, less expensive layer of defense to a fleet already threatened by Chinese DF-21 "carrier killer" missiles. Carter believes that the new projectiles will be cheaper than expensive new missiles or developing a new platform entirely. The projectiles will be cheaper than the missiles an adversary might launch at U.S. forces, "imposing higher costs on an attacker." If all of that is too defensively minded for you, Carter also mentioned this tidbit: "We tested the first shots of the hypervelocity projectile out of a Paladin a little over a month ago, and we also found that it significantly increases the Paladin's range." In other words, it sounds like the reach of field artillery lobbing high explosives on the battlefield is about to get a lot longer. Stay tuned.
  20. Why should anyone care about wikileaks? They're the fine people who posted manning's highly classified data detailing US operations in the Middle East which of course got American Servicemembers killed because the bad guys figured out how we operate. That's aiding and abetting our enemies. While I have no problem with wikileaks exposing corruption their putting out all that classified data was merely to get them ratings and public brownie points with the left. He gets what he gets, just like manning.
  21. Decide for yourself "Is This Ancient Greek ‘Laptop’ Proof That Time Travel Is Real?" http://news.yahoo.com/is-this-ancient-greek-laptop-proof-that-time-083225287.html?nf=1
  22. Seems we're doing much better than the doom and gloom "news" people out to get Obama are "reporting" U.S. running out of space to store oil by Matt Egan America is pumping so much oil that it's running out of places to keep it all. The U.S. now has nearly 503 million barrels of commercial crude oil stockpiled, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday. It's the highest level of supply for this time of the year in at least 80 years. The sky-high inventories are the latest sign that the U.S. oil boom isstill alive and kicking. U.S. oil production is near all-time highs despite the epic crash in oil prices from $107 a barrel in June 2014 to just $30 a barrel now. Sure, domestic oil production has slowed -- but just barely. Oil stockpiles are so high that certain key storage locations are now "bumping up against storage and logistical constraints," according to Goldman Sachs analysts. In other words, these facilities are nearly overflowing. Cushing, Oklahoma is the delivery point for most of the oil produced in the U.S. This key trading hub is currently swelling with 64 million barrels of oil. That represents a near-record 87% of the facility's total storage capacity as of November, according to the EIA. "There is a fear of tank topping in Cushing. We're seeing it get to its brims," said Matthew Smith, director of commodity research at ClipperData. Cushing has had to ramp up its storage capabilities in recent years just to deal with all this oil. If this key hub ran out of room to stockpile oil, that crude would have to be diverted elsewhere -- and that would hurt oil prices. "There would be a ripple effect across the U.S. that would impact prices everywhere," said Smith. Oil prices could spike lower Global inventories also remain high, with the International Energy Agency recently saying the world is "drowning" in oil. The agency is bracing for oversupply of 1.5 million barrels per day in the first half of 2016. Wall Street is nervously watching supply constraints since they can have dramatic repercussions on prices. More so than other commodities, oil is vulnerable to so-called "operational stress" due to the expensive and sophisticated infrastructure that is needed for storage. "Each time the market brushes up against infrastructure constraints, oil prices will likely spike to the downside to make oil supplies back off," Goldman wrote. By comparison, it's relatively easy to pile up unwanted metals in an open space like a warehouse. "Aluminum only needs a grassy field," Goldman wrote. To put these storage issues into context, Goldman estimates $1 billion of gold would fit into a bedroom closet. Crude oil of the same value would require 17 supertanker ships that can hold about 2 million barrels of oil each. America's oil output remains resilient OPEC continues to pump oil at full throttle as it seeks to avoid losing further market share to higher cost producers in the U.S. and elsewhere. Many figured U.S. shale drillers would scale back much faster as prices fell. The latest EIA figures show that the U.S. pumped 9.32 million barrels per day in November. That's actually up 1% from the year before and not too far below (4%) the April 2015 peak.
  23. Interesting ideas 5 Conspiracy Theories About the Oil Crash, from Ludicrous to LogicalMillie Dent,The Fiscal Times Thu, Feb 4 3:00 AM PST The last time crude oil prices spent significant time below $30 a barrel Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez were still “Bennifer,” Howard Dean was leading the Democratic primary race and Saddam Hussein had just been captured by U.S. troops in Iraq. It was December 2003 and the world was awash in oil. The OPEC cartel had ramped up production just as global demand was slowing, and the result was another drop in prices. Oil had been relatively cheap throughout the 1990s thanks to regulated production and price controls. But in the mid-2000s, prices began to rise in response to soaring demand from China, war in the Middle East and a weaker dollar, among other factors. Oil prices hit their peak in July 2008 at $145.29. Prices are now back down near 13-year lows after a period of stabilization between August 2009 and November 2014, when prices remained broadly between $70 and $120. Increased oil production around the world – especially in Saudi Arabia, Iran and the U.S. – amid slowing demand from China and Europe is the current source of the oil glut and low prices. “This is the most tremendous oversupply I’ve seen,” says Tom Kloza, co-founder and global head of energy analysis at the Oil Price Information Service. Some analysts have wondered why oil producers continue to pump crude at a time of massive oversupply. The usual answer is that countries like Saudi Arabia are simply trying to retain their market share. As a general rule, producers want to retain their portion of the market even as prices drop and then make up lost profits once prices rebound. A loss of market share is to be avoided at all costs because it can result in lower profits over the long haul. But could there be more complicated and possibly nefarious geopolitical dynamics behind the glut? Sometimes markets are driven by more than just supply and demand. Oil is arguably the most important natural resource in the world. It shapes economies, starts and ends global conflicts, and props up national power, wealth and prestige. It stands to reason that countries might take extraordinary measures to control the flow of this precious commodity, above and beyond the market. Here are five theories floating around about what’s “really” behind the incredible drop in the price of oil: 1. Saudi Arabia is plotting against Iran. Now that the sanctions against Iran have been lifted and Iranian oil can return to the world market, some people are wondering if Saudi Arabia is trying to sabotage Iran by holding down oil prices. Iran is poised to re-enter the global economy with a highly educated and young workforce and a strong manufacturing base and Saudi Arabia may be maneuvering to prevent Iran from reasserting itself and gaining more influence in the Middle East. Although the Saudi foreign minister, Adel al-Juberi, denied a secret plot to hurt Iran to CNN’s Wolf Blitzer, suspicions remain among a few experts. “We have long believed that the Saudis are driving oil prices lower to inflict pain on Iran,” James Schumm, executive director and senior oilfield services analyst at Oppenheimer & Co., wrote in January. 2. The U.S. and Saudi Arabia are punishing Russia. Both Saudi Arabia and the U.S. are at odds with Russia. Russia is supplying Syrian President Bashar al-Assad with billions in weaponry and military support, placing it in conflict with Saudi Arabia, which vehemently opposes Assad’s regime. Putin’s territorial moves in the Ukraine have angered the U.S. government, as well as leaders of the European Union. If Saudi Arabia and the U.S. are attacking Russia in a roundabout way with low oil prices, it’s been an effective tactic to cripple the country’s economy. About half of Russia’s budget revenue is tied to oil and gas exports, and plunging oil prices are wreaking havoc both on Russia’s energy industry and overall economy. Russian officials recently said that they are willing to meet with Saudi Arabia to discuss strategies to stabilize crude prices, briefly sending prices higher. But many analysts doubt that anything will come of the proposal and the oil is still flowing freely, with Russian production recently hitting post-Cold War highs. Although Kloza doesn’t think that the Saudis are specifically targeting Iran or Russia and are merely trying to increase their market share, “if in that plan, it weakens Iran and Russia, I think those are terrific byproducts,” Kloza says. 3. Obama is at war with the U.S. shale oil industry. One theory suggests that President Obama is working with Saudi Arabia to flood the global oil market, killing the U.S. shale oil industry in the process. One of Obama’s key concerns is the environment and the shale oil boom could slow the development of renewable energy. Kloza says this theory is utterly preposterous. “Blaming the President or Congress for the oil price decline is akin to blaming them for El Nino. If only our government leaders had the power that fringe groups sometimes ascribe to them — we’d all be in clover,” Kloza says. Obama even touted low gas prices during his final State of the Union. 4. Saudi Arabia has overthrown OPEC. Every member of the cartel has indicated a willingness to meet and implement a unilateral OPEC production cut — except for Saudi Arabia. Once an immensely powerful cartel that could shake national economies and whole industries, OPEC now lacks internal discipline and members are subject to the pain of plummeting oil prices as much as the rest of the world. Venezuela, which relies on oil for nearly all of its exports, has declared a nationwide economic emergency. Nigeria’s economy and currency have plunged into disarray. But Saudi Arabia keeps pumping. Is Saudi Arabia now abandoning the other members of the cartel? The kingdom is able to withstand deep price cuts thanks to its massive crude reserves. Perhaps Saudi Arabia is squeezing all of the other countries to knock them out of the game. Kloza says that the kingdom is a very low-cost producer and “can hold its hand over the $20 flame for a long time. But we’d have to have a GoPro or bugs inside the royal palace to know what they’re doing.” Venezuela has proposed an emergency meeting of the 13 members of OPEC, but so far only Algeria, Nigeria and Ecuador have expressed interest. In order for an emergency meeting to take place, all members must back the idea. 5. Saudi Arabia is at war with the U.S. shale oil industry. Largely due to the boom in the shale industry, U.S. oil production increased sharply after 2011. Production surged to 8.7 million barrels a day in 2014 , up from 7.5 million barrels a day the year before, and has only kept growing since then. The U.S. now pumps around 9.5 million barrels a day, or roughly 10 percent of the world’s oil supply, making it the third-largest producer in the world. Saudi Arabia has never admitted it publicly, but many experts believe it has ramped up production in an effort to protect its market share in the face of the U.S. shale boom. After boosting its production, Saudi Arabia then pushed down oil prices by increasing the discount that it offered in India and China to hurt the U.S. even more. Leonid Bershidsky, a BloombergView columnist, thinks that the kingdom is trying to push American companies out of business in order to teach the market a lesson: “that they are the go-to suppliers at any price level and that they’re always going to be there, unlike those fly-by-night American operators.” Unlike some of the wilder theories on the list, this one actually has some weight. Over the past few years, U.S. dependence on Saudi oil has greatly diminished as refiners have switched over to oil from the shale boom. But there are some skeptics. Denton Cinquegrana, chief oil analyst at Oil Price Information Service, says that even with the recent end of the ban on domestic crude exports, U.S. oil just isn’t a big enough threat to Saudi Arabia’s global market share to spur this kind of painful price war.

No holds barred chat

  • Hey kfools.. does this help? 

  • By Vegas

    Liberals are going to hell.

  • grgle

  • Where’s at @slideman?

  • Hola

  • I know this one, this new chat thing. I've seen it called the "shoutbox" among other things in my past. Very hard to hide from the chat box. The question is asked, there's no time to go search what other folks think, this is real time. Only seconds should be between chat box replies. This one is made for me. In the chat box one has to be quick on their feet with stuff at the ready. This chat box is the worst nightmare of anyone trying to deal with ol' teach. 

  • By pmurT

    hey @teacher that sounds like too much work for me LOL I need that useless thing called *time* in order to authenticate facts and truths which get posted by deceitful Dems

  • What does the red number refer to? currently, on my screen it says 2


  • Where does it say 2?

  • So. In the chat....if you tag a member the text afterwards should be a private message. 

  • How do? I'm teacher. If I'm online and the powers that be can figure out how to make it immediately apparent to me that whatever I've said here has been replied to I'm gonna show up right quick and kick some teeth in. It's the chat box, all this is new and scary. I know this gig. This starts now. 

  • Hey kfools, did you lose your securtiy cert? On my browser it is saying your site is not secure?

  • Mine too. I'm looking into it.

  • Mine too. 

  • I thought it was my location.. 

  • Just gave to renew the security cert. No big deal I'll do it tonight

  • OK thanks


  • By Blue Devil

    Happy Anniversary, America... on your Civil Union.

  • By teacher

    All lives matter.

  • By teacher

    Double post deleted.

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