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David Hann wants to cut Gramma’s Meals On Wheels so millionaires get off easy

by The Big E on March 30, 2011 · 25 comments

Minnesota Republicans are proposing to cut the Meals on Wheels program as a way to balance the budget.  In contrast, they refuse to raise taxes on the wealthiest 5% of Minnesotans so that they pay the same percent the rest of us do.  The wealthy make no sacrifices to fix our state deficit and Gramma loses her Meals on Wheels.

“We’re looking to reduce state spending in the largest area of state spending, which is growing out of control,” said state Sen. David Hann (R-Eden Prairie) Chair of the Senate Health and Human Services Committee and one of the bill’s lead sponsors. “None of these are going to be easy.”

Let’s be clear.  The Republican budget will go easy on the millionaires.

How short-sighted, cruel and stupid is Hann’s proposal?

“At a time when we’re working to prepare for a doubling of the senior population in the next 20 years, this is the wrong direction to be going,” said Patrick Rowan, executive director of Metro Meals on Wheels, an association that represents the numerous nonprofits that deliver hot meals to Twin Cities seniors.

A proposed $2.68 million cut to “senior nutrition program grants” over the next two years – a halving of state spending from projected levels – would result in an additional $1.9 million in federal funds being withheld, creating a 25 percent cut in overall funding, according to Jean Wood, director of the Aging and Adult Services Division for the Minnesota Department of Human Services, which administers the program. If state funding falls below certain levels, the federal government reduces the amount it pays to states in accordance with the federal Older Americans Act, which was first passed in 1965 and governs many social services for older Americans.

AO March 30, 2011 at 4:21 am

Are the wealthy 5% paying less in taxes than Gramma?  Is the lower income tax bracket Gramma is in getting an increase in their rate to move them above the rate for the wealthy 5%?  Fundamentally, do you believe the economy is better off with more spending on senior nutrition programs, or lower tax rates and the money not taxed being invested by the wealthy 5% who have a profit motive?

TwoPuttTommy March 30, 2011 at 4:26 am

Unfortunately, it’s “tinkled on” by the Boardroom Base you GOPers so dutifully defend.

And I’m not surprised you’re defending cuts to seniors getting one nutritious meal a day.

Not at all.

You’re the epitome of why these days, GOP stands for Greed Over Principles.

It’s “I got mine Jack; sucks to be Granny” in GOPer World.

AO March 30, 2011 at 5:01 am

Does that answer any of my questions Tommy?  Of course I believe in the trickle down effect.  Anyone with a basic understanding of economics knows that wealthy people don’t live in bubbles where their increased standard of living applies only to themselves.  We’ve seen increased standards of living for everyone in this country over the years.  Now, we could debate the stimulative effects of a tax cut for just the wealthy or a tax cut for just the middle class.  You could argue that the wider middle class tax cut was more immediately stimulative for the economy.  But arguing for raising the taxes on the wealthy while not cutting the middle class taxes at an equal or greater level results in a worse economy than the sort of spending cuts being proposed.

TwoPuttTommy March 30, 2011 at 5:42 am

Bush The Elder – correctly -called it “Voodoo Economics.”

Tell me, AO – do you believe in “The Invisible Hand” too?

Grace Kelly March 31, 2011 at 8:07 am

Give even more money to the rich so they can invest in China, while old people here have to give up meals! AO, could we talk to your grandmother and see how see feels about treating people this way? Would you make your grandmother give up a meal?

AO March 31, 2011 at 11:38 am

why would the rich invest in China?  perhaps because the business climate is worse here with more unnecessary regulation and taxes?

and shouldn’t my family be the ones providing for my grandmother?    

TwoPuttTommy March 31, 2011 at 5:51 pm

…   with more unnecessary regulation…”

There goes AO, repeating the GOPer mantra that it’s their God-given right to pollute groundwater, soil, and air.

Today’s GOPers are just pigs.

“and shouldn’t my family be the ones providing for my grandmother?”

And cold-hearted ones at that.

AO March 31, 2011 at 7:21 pm

you have to jump through a lot more hoops than just the environmental regulations to do business in America.  My point is that the rich aren’t stupid, and they will be greedy and go to where they can make money.  Let’s at least try to compete for that money.

How is it cold-hearted to care for my own grandmother?  

Alec March 30, 2011 at 5:42 am

AO, MArk Zandi, of Moody’s, which is a highly, highly reputable, and conservative economic outfit says that you are ignorant of economics.

Here is what Mark Zandi has to say about cutting taxes for the wealthy:

For every dollar in cuts, less than a dollar is returned in economic activity. In other words, tax cuts have a negative impact on the deficit. Do you get that AO? A dollar tax cut does not create enough economic activity by half. The wealthy do not invest. They put it into secure, low risk savings.

TwoPuttTommy March 30, 2011 at 5:54 am

… he’s a (cheney)in’ fraud.

Yesterday, in a post entitled “Best Buy Is Asking The Wrong Question” I had a link to the compensation of Best Buy CEO Brian Dunn.  It’s from

Base Salary:

2008 – $774,231
2009 – $876,926
2010 – $961,541

Yet frauds like AO are always saying “times are tough for everyone” and similar BS.

In AO’s world, a guy who’s base pay has gone up almost $200,000 in three years can’t afford to pay the same effective tax rate as I do.

BULL (cheney)in’ (STUFF).

AO is simply a waterboy for the Greed Over Principles Party’s Boardroom Base.

As I said in an earlier comment, I’d rather debate a table than AO; at least a table doesn’t make (stuff) up.

AO March 30, 2011 at 10:49 am

1st, Best Buy is a greedy company and surely would get a cheaper CEO if they could get the same return for their investment from the cheap CEO.

2nd, maybe Brian Dunn didn’t lose any money on the stock market during the recession, but I doubt it.  I also doubt his home and other assets went up in value.  No, he’s not going to starve, but that doesn’t mean his wealth was magically immune to the recession.

3rd, I would be happy to support you in your political effort to reduce your effective tax rate to that of Brian’s.

AO March 30, 2011 at 10:43 am

You are right that we can and have sought to increase the GDP through government stimulus, but there are other factors to measure the economy by besides the increase in GDP, especially useful when that increase has been created by Government Spending.  Unemployment and Inflation come to mind.  Real investment in the private sector, even when it comes by way of the low risk savings that you think the wealthy invest all of their money in is the ticket to a greater economy.  We can pump government money in the economy to try to smooth out a recession, but all of that money will have to be paid by the private sector growth at one point or another.  So we can pray for a miracle in some industry to increase production and profitability, or we can cut back on government spending and create jobs despite the lack of miracles.

Alec March 30, 2011 at 5:45 am

Here’s another one AO. For ecery public dollar invested in higher ed in Minnesota, 13.29 is created in economic activity. 13 to 1 AO. So, instead of investing, let’s cut 600,000,000 from something with a 13 to 1 return.

All of this to save taxes from the wealthy, which really have no effect on the economy.

If trickle down worked, why is the wealth gap at its worst point since the great depression?

AO March 30, 2011 at 10:35 am

why isn’t everyone running to their local university begging to invest with that sort of promised rate of return?  Are we suddenly going to have millions of students not going to school now that we cut 600Million?  There’s no doubt that educated students create economic activity, but no one is proposing the ban of education.

I think you would rather the poor be poorer, so long as the rich were poorer and the gap were smaller.  Fact is, the poor in this country have a higher standard of living than the poor of other countries, and the wealth of the rich in America has raised that standard rather than lowered it.

TwoPuttTommy March 30, 2011 at 5:38 pm

Your posts are complete BS.

AO March 30, 2011 at 7:42 pm

Don’t tell me you believe the BS about an extra $600M spent on education, creating 13 times that in economic activity.

I’m starting to think you just don’t have the guts to challenge your beliefs.  I really don’t mind if you try to explain why I’m wrong.

JML March 30, 2011 at 8:26 pm

Alec just presented two factual reasons why you are wrong, AO, and your response is basically “I don’t believe that’s true.” There’s no way to argue with someone who has no interest in facts if they conflict with what they want to believe.

The numbers bear it out that we’re significantly better off funding programs like food stamps, education, unemployment assistance, etc. over tax breaks for the wealthiest in order to stimulate the economy, create and sustain jobs. The math isn’t hard, but because you LIKE the IDEA of tax cuts, you ignore the math. This is why I don’t want you picking who is in charge of government.

AO March 31, 2011 at 1:44 am

I said a little more than “i don’t believe that’s true”.  The notion of judging the success of stimulus simply by increase in GDP ignores the reality of how GDP is measured.  GDP includes the government spending in it’s calculations, so of course spending is going to raise the GDP more quickly, but unemployment still remains high and the government spending must be taxed out of the private sector at a later date.  This debt spending also raises inflation, making for a tax that isn’t taken by the IRS, but in the decreased buying power of every individual.

Alec March 31, 2011 at 4:02 am

If you want to increase our debt, then cut higher Ed. Penny dumb, but pound dumber.

The GI Bill returned $6.90 for every dollar invested in economic activity.

According to South Carolina’s school of business, every dollar spent on higher education returns $25.20 in economic activity.

From the Texas state comptroller:

every dollar invested in the state’s higher education system eventually returns $5.50 to the Texas economy.

In addition, the report notes that for every one dollar the State of Kansas invests in higher education, it receives $11.94 in return.



–Sources: “A Cost-Benefit Analysis of Government Investment in Post-Secondary Education Under the World War II GI Bill,” Subcommittee on Education and Health of the Joint Economic Committee, December 14, 1988 and Labor Institute and Public Health Institute, Corporate Power and the American Dream: Toward an Economic Agenda for Working People. New York: The Apex Press, 1997.

—Darla School of Business, University of South Carolina

TwoPuttTommy March 31, 2011 at 5:59 am

… which is:

If trickle down worked, why is the wealth gap at its worst point since the great depression?

AO March 31, 2011 at 7:34 am

notice this calculation is based upon every dollar spent, not every additional dollar spent.  That is to say we can’t assume that for the next dollar we spend on education that we’ll get the same return, or that for every dollar we cut, the return on the remaining dollars wouldn’t be higher.

AO March 31, 2011 at 7:30 am

The poor are not suddenly as poor as they were during the great depression.  The standard of living has raised.  The Gap is much more to do with the rich getting richer, rather than the poor getting poorer.  It’s not a zero sum game where we’re dividing up pieces of the pie.  We’re become more productive since the 1930s.

TwoPuttTommy March 31, 2011 at 5:58 pm

Of course you don’t; you’re from the “I got mine, jack – sucks to be you” party.

“The standard of living has raised.”  Make up your mind, AO – either you agree those pesky rules and regulations have worked, or you don’t.

“The Gap is much more to do with the rich getting richer, rather than the poor getting poorer.”

Complete BS.

For but one example:

When I was in college, a student would work during the summer and make enough to pay for books, fees, tuition, and housing and STILL slam a few brews on the weekend.  Many incurred little – if any – student debt.

Thanks to the Greed Over Principles party, that is no longer the case.

You, AO, are an intellectually dishonest scumbag.

Which, of course, explains why you’re a “leader” in today’s Greed Over Principles party.

TwoPuttTommy March 31, 2011 at 6:04 pm

Obviously, AO is still a fan of the school of Enron Accounting…

AO March 31, 2011 at 7:28 pm

If you haven’t noticed, the cost of college has far outpaced inflation over the years.  You can buy a cell phone, computer and tv for far less today and we’re not dying of starvation as the poor receive more in benefits today and food production has become cheaper and more efficient.

If we want to tackle the abnormally high cost of college we will have to dramatically decrease the subsidies to colleges.  It’s not as if colleges take their subsidies or any money given to them that isn’t earned by their students summer jobs such as scholarships, and reduce tuition with that money.  They’re not stupid, they will continue to build new buildings and support unprofitable majors until the students stop coming.

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