David John Diersen, GOPUSA Illinois Editor
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GOPUSA ILLINOIS Daily Clips - December 21, 2014

-- AS THE DEMOCRAT PARTY'S STRANGLEHOLD ON ILLINOIS AND ON AMERICA TIGHTENS: Weak growth continues to hammer Illinois economy - Ameet Sachdev
-- Unchecked casino expansion stops paying out - Melissa Harris
-- U.S. criminal probes nab 13; race questions raised - AP
-- The arrogance of liberal elites - Michael Gerson
-- Rauner pulls no punches in leaked inaugural address - Kevin Craver
(FROM THE ARTICLE: I have obtained the final draft of Governor-elect Bruce Rauner’s inaugural address. A good reporter doesn’t reveal his sources, but I can confirm that I didn’t get it from North Korean Sony hackers or Rolling Stone magazine. I am reprinting the draft in its entirety, with Rauner’s notes on gestures and body language as written.)
-- Rauner talks of dogs, housing and the work ahead as governor - Bernard Schoenburg
-- Republicans On Special Session - Dave Dahl
-- RNC Urges 'Interview' Showings: 'We Cannot Be Bullied Into Giving Up Our Freedom'  (DIERSEN: Diersen to Republicans: Don't be bullied, read GOPUSA ILLINOIS emails.)
-- Obama condemns NYPD killings, calls for 'patient dialogue' - Justin Sink
-- Holder calls shootings 'act of barbarism' - Justin Sink
-- IRS warns: We're nearly crippled - Bernie Becker  (DIERSEN: What do you know about IRS operations?  I worked for IRS for almost 9 years. I worked for GAO on audits of IRS for 3 years.)
(FROM THE ARTICLE: The IRS wants both taxpayers and its staff to know this: It’s only going to get worse. After absorbing a $346 million budget cut, IRS officials are warning taxpayers not to expect their phone calls to get answered or their refunds to be delivered quickly. Employees shouldn’t count on overtime pay, or for empty staff slots to be filled. And lawmakers seeking to reduce the deficit should assume the agency will collect far less revenue than it could have. “We’re well beyond cutting out any fat,” John Koskinen, the IRS commissioner, told reporters after his agency saw its budget slashed for the fifth consecutive year. “And we’re now into cutting, as people say, muscle headed toward bone.” In all, the IRS is operating with roughly $1.2 billion less than it did in 2010, when the agency’s budget reached its high-water mark of roughly $12.1 billion. The $10.9 billion the agency is slated to receive for 2015 is a 3 percent cut from last year and the IRS’s smallest budget since 2007, Koskinen told staffers in an email this week. Adjusting for inflation, the IRS budget is roughly equivalent to what Congress gave it in 1998 — an era when the agency processed about 30 million fewer returns in a given year.)
-- Obama: Sony hacking attack not an act of war by North Korea - Kyle Balluck  (DIERSEN: I should write a book about "acts of war" that have been taken against me.  Chapters could include a) my Democrat superiors in the federal government, b) defendants in lawsuits that I have filed, and c) activists, candidates, elected officials, party leaders, major donors, political consultants, etc. in Wheaton, in Milton Township, in DuPage County, and in Illinois.  They would love it.)
-- The Guilt-Prone Can Hold Back the Team - PHYLLIS KORKKI  (DIERSEN: Who wants you to feel guilty?  My Democrat superiors, supervisors, coworkers, and subordinates in the federal government wanted me to feel guilty a) for having a job that a Democrat should have had, b)  for having a job that a woman should have had, c) for having a job that a minority should have had, d) for having a job that someone who was younger than me should have had, e) for having a job that a veteran should have had, and f) for having a job that someone who had less money than me should have had.  They especially wanted me to feel guilty a) for getting promoted to GS-9 ($52,516 in today's dollars) when I was 23, b) for getting promoted to GS-11 ($63,538) in today's dollars) when I was 24, c) for getting promoted to GS-12 ($76,157 in today's dollars) when I was 25, d) for getting promoted to GS-13 ($90,561 in today's dollars) when I was 38, and e) for not taking GAO's early retirement "offer" when I was 45 years old in 1993.   RINOs, Democrat plants, Libertarian plants, and Green plants in Wheaton, in Milton Township, in DuPage County, and in Illinois, their operatives, and their dupes want me to feel guilty for all the losses that Republicans have suffered since 2000.)
-- DIERSEN HEADLINE: The NYT promotes homosexual activity in Cuba.
-- What We’re Searching For - Seth Stephens-Davidowitz  (DIERSEN: What do you use Google to search for?  I search for recent news and commentary of interest to Illinois Republicans.)
(FROM THE ARTICLE: I am not sure what it says about me, but I have chosen to spend the early part of the holiday season analyzing publicly available Google data. I am not alone in this obsession. Recently, Christopher Ingraham of The Washington Post reported that his 2014 “misery index,” based on a variety of Google searches, was lowest on Christmas.)
-- Raising Ambitions: The Challenge in Teaching at Community Colleges - GINIA BELLAFANTE  (DIERSEN: If I was still working for GAO, my Democrat superiors, supervisors, coworkers, and subordinates would use Mike Rifino to hint/imply/argue/shout at me that I was born with a silver spoon in my mouth and that I have always been privileged.)
-- For Former Bank Worker, Descent Into Illness and Debt - ANEMONA HARTOCOLLIS  (DIERSEN: If I was still working for GAO, my Democrat superiors, supervisors, coworkers, and subordinates would use Denise Muller to hint/imply/argue/shout at me that I was born with a silver spoon in my mouth and that I have always been privileged.)
-- FRONT PAGE TOP OF FOLD WITH COLOR PICTURE OF RAUL CASTRO SAYING THAT CUBA WOULD STAY COMMUNIST: If Not David to the U.S. Goliath, Cuba Asks What Its Role Is Now - DAMIEN CAVE and VICTORIA BURNETT  (DIERSEN: Increasingly, those who promote Communism promote Obama.)
-- Savings Strategies for Young People  When Your Earnings Are Meager, You Need a Plan - LINDSAY GELLMAN  (DIERSEN: Constructively, I began saving for retirement in 1966, when I was 18 years old, when I started working for the Post Office and earning credits toward a Civil Service Retirement System pension.)
-- Memories of financial crisis fading as risks rise - AP
-- Taking to the streets - Editorial  (DIERSEN: Democrats always use children as cannon fodder.)
(FROM THE EDITORIAL: A few hundred students from Boston’s high schools (and some from Cambridge, Brookline and other places) blew off classes last Tuesday to stage demonstrations against the refusal of grand juries to indict police officers involved in the deaths of unarmed black men in Ferguson, Mo., and New York. This boycott is nothing to be cheered. At least some students, it appears, will be marked absent and assessed demerits, which is appropriate. If students want to hold or go to rallies to protest something, every week has two days in it when school is not in session. During recent weekends there’s been no lack of protests of police conduct. Letting students decide when something is so important that it justifies truancy is indeed a slippery slope. How about the Occupy Wall Street demonstrations which tied up public spaces in many cities not so long ago? Is taking off from class to join the concrete campers excusable? We think not, and we hold the same view no matter what the cause. Want to protest the growing anti-Semitism of European governments? Do it on a weekend. Bored to tears by blah food in the school cafeteria? Protest during lunchtime (not hindering the blah seekers, of course), not during class hours. High school is, among other things, a preparation for adulthood. One of the characteristics of an adult is honoring one’s obligations or taking the consequences for shucking them. Experience shows that high school is difficult enough without assuming that students have enough information and maturity of judgment to make decisions about public issues of the day, though some will. That assumption will be justified for all of them in due time, which always comes soon.)
-- Raul Castro says Cuba won’t abandon its socialist principles  He highlights the profound political differences that still divide his nation and the United States. - TIM JOHNSON
-- Millennials' version of the American Dream - Mary Umberger  (DIERSEN: When you were younger, what was your version of the American Dream?),0,6201666.column
(FROM THE ARTICLE: Q: Why do the millennials matter so much to the real estate industry?  A: There are an awful lot of them — 92 million of them. And half of them are 25 or older, traditionally a prime homebuying age. Q: Who are they, demographically? A: They're different from previous generations in some significant ways. One big difference is that they're delaying marriage and starting families. In 1980, the average age at which someone married was 22, and the average age at which they had a first child was 23. Today, the average age of marriage is 27. Even more interesting, the average age to have a baby now is 26 — a year earlier than the average marriage age.  Certainly, they're delaying marriage, and that's the most compelling reason they haven't entered the homebuying world. If you look at what really triggers homebuying, it's that you get married, you have children, you have more children, your marriage might end — in other words, major life events. There's also this perception that all Gen Ys are at home with their parents. Yes, the percentage of people under 30 who live at home is up, but not dramatically — it's up by 6 to 7 percent. Oh, and 36 percent of them have tattoos. Q: So, are they going to make their move, so to speak, in the coming year? A: I don't think so. Remember, a lot of the millennials are 14 or 15 years old. And many of the older millennials are financially challenged, burdened with large amounts of student debt — another of our studies concluded that young adults who are concerned with the load of student debt they're carrying average $250 a month in payments for those loans. We don't think they want to be renters, in a big way, but renting gives more flexibility to those nonmarried, childless households. We do think they definitely desire to buy a house at some point — and we're projecting that large numbers of them will have saved up enough money to start buying homes in significant numbers in 2019 — that's when they'll take the lead in the population. Fourteen percent of them are in the real estate market right now, and that number is going to continue to grow.)
-- Republicans to theaters: Don't be 'bullied,' show Sony's 'The Interview' - Brian Stelter  (DIERSEN: Diersen to Republicans: Don't be bullied, read GOPUSA ILLINOIS emails.)
-- Europe's main leaders far apart on immigration - Reuters
-- Public Pensions Are America's Greece - The Economist  (DIERSEN: What percent of those who are not receiving a public pension or are not in line to get a public pension believe that public pensions are too generous?  What percent of those who are not receiving a public pension or are not in line to get a public pension never applied for a government job because a) the pay and benefits are terrible, b) the advancement opportunities are terrible, c) they lacked required education, work experience, professional certification, and/or professional license, d) they cannot pass a background investigation, and/or e) they cannot take the vicious demonization, denigration, and condemnation that comes with being a government employee or government retiree?)
(FROM THE ARTICLE: Bruce Rauner, a Republican, liked to talk tough about unions and public-sector pensions when he was campaigning for governor in Illinois. "The system is full of fraud and self-dealing and abuses, such as folks who have a pay rise in the last years of their career [so their pension is higher] or folks who moved in and out of certain jobs, so they could get a pension," he said in August 2013. With two or three pensions, some are making as much as half a million dollars in retirement pay, he claimed. This, he thundered, is a rip-off of taxpayers and other workers. But as soon as Mr Rauner was elected last month, the self-made millionaire toned down the rhetoric. The size and complexity of the public-pension mess suddenly hit him, and, aware that he had to bring together Democrats, unions and creditors, he began to backtrack. He declares now that it is most important to "protect what is done--don't change history. Don't modify or reduce anybody's pension who has retired, or has paid into a system and they've accrued benefits." Illinois is like Greece in one obvious way: it overpromised and underdelivered on pensions and has little appetite for dealing with the problem, says Hal Weitzman of the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. This large Midwestern state, with a population of 13m (Greece has 11m, though a far smaller GDP than Illinois), has the most underfunded retirement system of any state and the largest pension burden relative to state revenue. It also has the highest number of public-pension funds close to insolvency, such as the one looking after Chicago's police and firemen. According to the Civic Federation, a budget watchdog, Illinois has piled up a whopping $111 billion in unfunded pension liabilities (see chart), in addition to $56 billion in debt for health benefits for pensioners. The state devotes one in four of its tax dollars to pensions, which is more than it spends on primary and secondary education.)
-- Voters Say Taliban Not True to Islam  (DIERSEN: What do you know about Islam?  I should write an article, or maybe a book, about those in Wheaton, in Milton Township, in DuPage County, and in Illinois who viciously demonize, viciously denigrate, and viciously condemn Missouri Synod Lutherans as being "too conservative" and even worse things.)

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