Google left leaning?
I learned something yesterday, maybe a lot of you readers already know. Internet search engine, Google is politically biased. I typed in “Do illegal immigrants pay taxes?” It returned a huge list of websites, all with headlines including the words, “Undocumented immigrants....” all of which stated that they do pay taxes, even quoting figures, and also saying that they do jobs Americans won’t do, plus other info all “positive” toward these immigrants. There was nothing negative about immigrants in any of these sites. Of course, I recognized the liberal progressive code word “undocumented” which Google substituted for my word, “illegal.” Google’s software engineers must be liberals.
I had to scroll way down and try other questions to find websites which had “illegal” immigrants in their headlines. Information in these websites was quite different from the first group. They said that a lot of illegal immigrants do file federal tax returns, using a special taxpayer ID numbers they can obtain from IRS since most do not have valid Social Security numbers. But all or nearly all report incomes below the threshold which qualifies them for Earned Income Tax Credits. So they pay no federal income tax (none was withheld) and even get a check from the federal government. There is an impact on states as well.
Take Georgia. One site reported that the estimated 624,000 illegal (or undocumented, for those of you who prefer that label) immigrants in Georgia get free medical care from emergency hospital clinics, educational benefits, public assistance, general government services and other benefits that taxpaying Georgia citizens pay for. One site reported that all this amounted to $2.4 billion in Georgia state and local costs to taxpayers, offset by only $142 million in taxes collected by the state, most probably all sales taxes when they shop at merchants that must collect it at point of sale. That’s a net cost to Georgia taxpayers of $2.26 billion in 2010. Smiley’s flea market is jammed every weekend with Hispanics buying most of their needs without paying sales taxes. But at least there is some benefit to people who sell to them.
Most illegal immigrants operate under the radar, paid by cash with no record for anyone to trace. Lawn service people get paid cash by property owners. Growers probably pay them in cash to pick produce, as well as the service industry, builders, plumbers, electricians, etc. With no records to trace, It’s an underground economy subsidized by taxpayers, at a cost of $768 per household headed by a U.S. citizen in 2010. (www.FAIRUS.org)
So, who do you believe? What makes more common sense?
We’re not sure you can slap Google with the liberal label because of its website returns that are governed by a number of factors, including advertising dollars. Our search of the same question returned 1.43 million websites. No, we didn’t check them all.
What has happened to the festival that was to “celebrate the beauty of the trees and to honor Fickling for all he had so generously contributed to the town”? (cherryblossom.com)
What was once a festival about Macon and for Maconites now seems to be solely about generating income. I understand that the festival has to cover expenses, but organizers are quickly pricing ordinary Maconites out of the fun.
Take the Central City Park entry fee, for example. Before this fee was initiated, a family of five could all attend the free events at the park for a small parking fee. Now, that same family will shell out $25 just to get in. Yes, they may receive “discount tickets” for various vendors, but this is still an unnecessary burden on many of our citizens.
In years past, my wife and I would go to the park several times during the festival, and on almost every visit, we spent money on food, beverages and souvenirs. Since the introduction of the “entry fee,” those visits have stopped. We no longer attend any events at the park, mostly as a matter of principal.
I think it’s time to do away with the professional planners and give the festival back to the citizens of Macon. That said I composed the following haiku:
Pros organize shows
With prices none can afford
It’s all about cash.
As I look on our president’s ban on individuals coming from the six countries, I see a lot of “fake politics.” The ban is not about making us significantly safer. It is about fulfilling a campaign promise. First it is not a 90 day ban to strengthen security. If the president needed 90 days to review and strengthen our security from immigration I could agree with that. But that is not the case. What has he done with the last 40 days since the first ban? He should need only 50 days if my math is correct.
If you listen at all what you really hear is a ban for the duration of his term in office. The reason given for the pause is that we cannot vet individuals from these countries. This will not be solved in 90 days or 1,000 days. We cannot vet many people from other countries that have had a problem with terrorism, yet they are not on the banned countries list. Why is that? We also do not even try to vet people from countries like France that have problems with terrorism.
The other main point I have is increased vetting will fail because most people who commit or try to commit terrorism in our country are our own citizens or long-term immigrants who did not come here with the intent to be terrorists. If 100 percent terrorism free is his goal, he should come back from Oz to the real world.
I have decided to vote for the SPLOST in Houston County on March 21. Though I initially had doubts about the $7 million indoor swimming pool in the Houston County SPLOST, I now totally support it. As a former YMCA senior lifeguard in my youth at summer camps on Cape Cod and in Maine, it finally dawned on me that a county indoor swimming pool is a logical development. And that it will be well used by many county residents who otherwise would not be able to swim in a centrally located area of our county.
Please vote for our Houston County SPLOST on March 21.