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Paid Family Leave Is Reborn

by | Jul 2, 2015 5:30am () Comments | Commenting has expired | Share
Posted to: Aging, Business, The Economy, Equality, Health Care, Insurance, Labor, State Budget, Special Session, State Capitol

Christine Stuart file photo Budget adjustments signed into law Tuesday mean the state is on the road to adopting paid family and medical leave, but state leaders disagree about how long the road will be and where it will end.

The budget allocates $140,000 in 2016 to look at how the state should go about implementing a plan that allows workers to earn income while taking time off for illness, to bond with new children, or to care for sick family members.

Carolyn Treiss, executive director of the Permanent Commission on the Status of Women, said the passage of paid family and medical leave is no longer a question of “if,” but of “when.”

It’s an open-ended timetable anchored by two dates in the new budget: A consultant — who would evaluate options related to employee contribution, claims processing, staffing and funding opportunities — must be hired by Oct. 1 in order to submit a final report by Feb. 1, 2016.

“Virtually all Connecticut residents will be affected by a medically necessary leave for themselves or their loved ones at some point in their working lives,” Treiss said. “Paid leave is compassionate, practical and good for both employer and employee, and we are grateful to the legislators who supported the bill and this language, which lays out a pathway to get us there.”

But others, like Office of Policy and Management Secretary Ben Barnes and his boss, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, are more equivocal about where the state is heading when it comes to paid family and medical leave.

Barnes said the bill advances the concept of paid family and medical leave, but there’s additional legislative action that will need to occur to implement it fully.

“We believe in it and we were happy to advance the program more,” Barnes said of the language in the budget bill that showed up at the last minute as a surprise to many.

Gov. Malloy said the language gives them time to figure out if it would be “a competitive advantage or a competitive disadvantage.”

Earlier this year, a bill that would give eligible employees up to 12 weeks of paid leave from their jobs was never raised for a vote in either chamber. Under that bill, workers would contribute a percentage of their weekly earnings to a Family and Medical Leave Compensation Trust Fund. In turn, should employees need to take a medical leave to care for themselves or a family member, they would receive 100 percent of their average weekly earnings up to a maximum compensation of $1,000 per week.

State Sen. Mae Flexer, D-Killingly, characterized the nation’s lack of support for new mothers in particular as “shameful and an embarrassment.”

According to a 2014 United Nations report analyzing data from 185 countries, only the United States and Papua New Guinea do not offer paid maternity leave.

As an early proponent of paid family and medical leave, Flexer said many people in her eastern Connecticut district have asked her to address the issue in the legislature.

“And as we did on gay marriage and universal access to affordable healthcare, once again Connecticut is leading the way in America on providing paid time off for families to care for a newborn or a sick family member,” Flexer said.

Paid family and medical leave is currently available in Rhode Island, New Jersey, and California, according to the National Partnership for Women and Families. It was authorized in Washington in 2007 but never went into effect because of budget issues.

The issue also is a priority for advocates for the elderly and their caregivers. Nora Duncan, state director for the AARP, said the latest directive from the legislature is a step toward ensuring that the children of elderly parents don’t have to choose between their jobs and their loved ones. She said it makes financial sense to support measures that would make it easier for family caregivers to provide services that end up saving the state money.

“Each year in Connecticut, more than 700,000 family caregivers help keep their aging loved ones independent and out of costly institutions, providing an economic value of approximately $5.8 billion,” Duncan said.

While U.S. President Barack Obama called for paid leave in this year’s State of the Union address, the issue has a tough slog in the Republican-dominated Congress. The Family and Medical Insurance Leave Act was first introduced by U.S. Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., in 2013 and reintroduced this year by U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-New York.

State Rep. Matthew Lesser, D-Middletown, credited DeLauro with helping to advance paid family leave at the state level even though her bill never gained traction in Congress.  “Once again we’ve shown that if Congress will not lead on leave, the states will,” Lesser said.

That’s exactly what’s been happening.

Rhode Island instituted temporary caregiver insurance last year. The program pays out approximately 60 percent of an employee’s paycheck, up to a maximum of $770 per week, when time is taken off to bond with a new child or care for a sick family member. The benefit lasts for up to four weeks. The program is paid for through employee deductions at a current withholding rate of 1.2 percent of a worker’s first $64,200 in earnings. An employee would not contribute more than $770.40 per year as of 2015.

In New Jersey, a 2008 law says workers may receive two-thirds of their usual wages up to a maximum of $572 per week for six weeks while taking time off to bond with a newborn or newly adopted child or to provide care for a seriously ill family member. The program, also funded through employee deductions, means that each worker contributes 0.09 percent of a worker’s first $32,000 in earnings. An employee would not contribute more than $28.80 in 2015.

California was the first state to institute paid family leave in 2004.

Christine Stuart contributed to this report.

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(44) Archived Comments

posted by: Biff Winnetka | July 2, 2015  7:26am

What sane person would open a for-profit business in Connecticut???

Paid Family Leave WILL incrementally increase the number of business closings/defections in CT.

I can’t wait to see Connecticut’s 2020 census data and PolitiJoes spin of the changes since 2010.

posted by: Coffee Chatter | July 2, 2015  8:31am

Read the bill and then ask yourself why put an elaborate plan in place at the state level when a short term disability plan would have the same end result. Short term disability plans are inexpensive and easy to administer.

posted by: art vandelay | July 2, 2015  12:08pm

art vandelay

Another excellent reason for every private sector company in this state to pack up their bags and leave.  Connecticut does not want you.

posted by: art vandelay | July 2, 2015  12:11pm

art vandelay

Why is Fasano in this picture?  If he’s pro business and a Republican he should be as far away from the camera as possible.  He’s sending the wrong message.

posted by: oldtimer | July 2, 2015  12:40pm

Ct is doing its best to emulate Greece

posted by: SocialButterfly | July 2, 2015  4:06pm

@art vandelay: Why should only Democrats be photographed after they botched the state budget all by themselves?

posted by: M_Dietrich | July 2, 2015  4:11pm

M_Dietrich

Just so the doomsayers are aware, there are companies right here in CT that already offer paid leave as a component of their benefit packages - likely because they believe in supporting human capital. But for those companies that don’t, I do think the government should step in to encourage paid family leave benefits - although I’m not sure the idea from this past session is really a great solution. In any event, I’ll produce a report by Feb 1st for a measly $40,000 and they can keep the remaining $100,000 to clear up the deficit lol.

posted by: Christine Stuart | July 2, 2015  4:56pm

Christine Stuart

Art,
This was a file photo of Mae from an unrelated press conference in May. It had nothing to do with paid family leave. Sorry for the confusion. Ignore the people in the background.
Christine

posted by: art vandelay | July 3, 2015  12:37am

art vandelay

@SocialButterfly,
CTNJ’s Editor stated that it was a file photo unrelated to the issue at hand.

posted by: Politijoe | July 3, 2015  7:10am

Politijoe

This is the same issue, different topic….. Middle class economics: healthcare, living wages, paid family leave, overtime, vacation time, income equality, tax reform, etc…
other states and nations have these same protections, some for many years and with better outcomes.

posted by: art vandelay | July 3, 2015  12:50pm

art vandelay

@Politijoe,
Like Greece?

posted by: dano860 | July 3, 2015  1:42pm

This comes back to the old ‘they are doing it so why shouldn’t we’? Mom would have said, ‘if they jump into the fire would you?’
There is no apocalypse now and there won’t be one should it ever pass but Ms. Flexer has no idea what this means to or how it will affect businesses.
Quite a few years ago we implemented a 6 week policy at P&W. I was a supervisor at the time, to say it wasn’t abused would be gracious at best. It took a fair amount of time bookkeeping for the difference in pay and time out. In the end we had to shuffle people around to cover for the missing person also. Sometimes it required shift change or extra overtime. If you’re a 10 person operation and two persons are out on leave, how does that not affect your business?
Also how are the individual small business owners going to benefit from this? Would this help or hinder someone like Christine and Doug?
I’m not saying it isn’t good or that it can’t work but as with most things that fall out of Hartford, it will be half baked and not fully vetted. It will become a burden on a majority of our businesses.

posted by: SocialButterfly | July 3, 2015  4:04pm

Being a burden on the majority of our small business defines as state Democratic prosperity to our Malloy political machine. Bad voting has left us with failed leadership.

posted by: Rick S. | July 3, 2015  8:42pm

As a small business owner (12 person machine shop) this is another example of how to kill employment in CT.  This will drastically hurt small guys like us. I can’t afford to have someone out for an extended period, without being able to hire a replacement.  Plus this new tax on employees, especially the middle class, will take more money away from them.  You just know that this pool of money will be used up or run in a deficit, then the employer will have to fund more, or the tax payers.  Why do these legislatures feel they can just keep piling on businesses?

posted by: justsayin | July 4, 2015  6:05am

This is simply a place government need not be involved. This is employee-employer agreements.

posted by: JohnQPublic | July 6, 2015  8:52am

Every one benefit to the employee seems like a good idea, until you add them all together and the system crashes under its own weight.  The other countries in Europe that succeed with great employee benefits also have strong measures against abuse.  In CT we have no such measures.

posted by: Politijoe | July 6, 2015  11:01am

Politijoe

@Rick: this legislation will in the end exclude small business (under 50 employees)

@Justsayin: seriously….government should have no role in worker protections/wages?  Are you familiar with US history? Are you suggesting the nation should not have established the dozens of protections we have or perhaps we should abolish them?

Employers and Corporations did not feel generous and decide to give you two days off every week to have a social/personal life. (We now call them weekends). Corporations did not just feel like being nice one day and give their employees paid vacations. CEOs didn’t get together in a board room and say “Let’s give our employees more rights at work” or “Maybe there should be laws to limit our power over an employee”. So lets put to rest this silly notion of yours that government has no role in these issues. Until you and other conservatives step forward and give up virtually ALL the benefits you’re entitled to at work, whether you work in the public or private sector then please refrain from the usual teaparty contradictions and hypocritical rhetoric that worker protections and labor unions are ruining this country while enjoying your weekends and paid vacations.

Corporations use to work employees 80+ hours a week, offer no breaks, hire children, often in horrid, dangerous, unsanitary work conditions and paid literally next to nothing.

Thanks to government and organized labor, workers now have certain protections. However, lets not forget corporations don’t voluntarily offer these benefits, they’re required to provide:

•  40 hour workweeks
•  Lunch Breaks
•  Overtime
•  Paid Vacation
•  FMLA
•  Sick Leave
•  Social Security
•  Minimum Wage
•  Civil Rights Act
•  8-Hour Work Day
•  Child Labor Laws
•  Occupational Safety & Health Act (OSHA)
•  Worker’s Compensation
•  Unemployment Insurance
•  Pensions
•  Workplace Safety Standards
•  Employer Health Care Insurance
•  Wrongful Termination Laws
•  Age Discrimination protections
•  Whistleblower Protection
•  Employee Polygraph Protect Act
•  Veteran’s Employment and Training
•  Compensation increases
•  Sexual Harassment Laws
•  Americans With Disabilities Act
•  Holiday Pay
•  Employer Dental, Life, and Vision
•  Privacy Rights
•  Pregnancy and Parental Leave
•  Military Leave
•  Equal Pay Acts

Remind us again how the Middle class wage earner has not benefited from government involvement in the workplace?

posted by: edw | July 6, 2015  4:36pm

One would think that employers that think paid leave is good for both the employer and employee, are probably already doing it!

Should CT, which has had the worse economic recovery in New England, just passed a tax increase, and is in the bottom 5 of many economic measurements, be passing legislation that might chase away companies from CT, or prevent new companies from forming?

posted by: justsayin | July 6, 2015  8:54pm

@Politijoe tell me again how these are “new” issues that now need to be delt with? There are options for employees now, you mentioned a few. This is an overreach that should not be mandated by ct government.

posted by: gutbomb86 | July 6, 2015  8:58pm

gutbomb86

Is everyone aware that this bill would create an employee-funded program? Not employer funded?

It just seems like the partisanship has run amok again. Oppositional comments for the sake of opposition.

posted by: M_Dietrich | July 6, 2015  9:43pm

M_Dietrich

Also, the reality is that this “legislation” doesn’t really do much (other than line a consultant’s pocket) or actually require that this paid leave idea be implemented.

posted by: dano860 | July 6, 2015  10:03pm

Well we did make another top 10 list. We’re right there in the Worst State to Earn a Living list.
We have to wonder how much government intervention has contributed to that? It doesn’t appear as though they helped get us off the list!
The latest 380 job project that UTC is doing in Florida leads one to believe they have any faith in Connecticut, tax credits or not.

posted by: dano860 | July 7, 2015  9:26am

A good majority of the list Politijoe reports were garnered though union negotiations. We can say that the government allowed the unions…but that’s a stretch too.
In the beginning unions did what was needed for workers but they are pretty much used to support their leaders at this point.
My earlier post should have intoned that UTC, by virtue of putting 380 new jobs in Florida, has little to no faith in Connecticut.

posted by: Biff Winnetka | July 7, 2015  12:19pm

@Gutbomb86

“Is everyone aware that this bill would create an employee-funded program? Not employer funded?”

Will the employee taking leave also fund the Temp I have to hire to maintain productivity in the leave- taking employees absence???

@Politijoe will eventually acknowledge the state’s fiscal distress…when there is a Republican Governor in office.

posted by: gutbomb86 | July 7, 2015  1:19pm

gutbomb86

@biff - if the employee fund is paying for the leave, then the company would be getting a windfall if they’re not hiring a temp. And we both know that many companies would not need to hire a temp anyway because co-workers are expected to pick up the slack when anyone is out, whether it be a simple sick day or a vacation or bereavement or whatever else comes up.

Like I’ve said many times - in most cases in these comment threads it seems like opposition for the sake of opposition, not because it makes sense. Belligerent partisanship instead of thoughtful criticism.

In fact I think it’s safe to say that the searchable [postings] in anonymous comment threads like these has played a significant part in misinforming the country and adding to an unnecessary and unhelpful level of polarization. #mytwocents

posted by: Biff Winnetka | July 7, 2015  1:42pm

@Gutbomb said..

“if the employee fund is paying for the leave, then the company would be getting a windfall if they’re not hiring a temp. And we both know that many companies would not need to hire a temp anyway because co-workers are expected to pick up the slack when anyone is out, whether it be a simple sick day or a vacation or bereavement or whatever else comes up.”

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

Then I should send half my staff out on leave and realize a really BIG windfall!!!

Not sure you ever ran a biz Gutbombster, but I don’t know ANY small businesses in the “CT Economy” that can afford to be overstaffed to the point where productivity remains constant when employees go on leave.

Nice try though.

posted by: M_Dietrich | July 7, 2015  3:08pm

M_Dietrich

Of course there would be a cost to employers, but the cost would be no different than the cost now under FMLA (assuming the proposed plan covers the same group of employers and employees). The benefits to a company that offers paid leave on its own are (at a minimum) higher employee retention and better productivity - and there is significant monetary value to that. The benefits to society are even greater, which is why I think government should encourage paid leave (just maybe not by way of this particular proposal).

posted by: justsayin | July 7, 2015  4:34pm

@biff well stated.

posted by: gutbomb86 | July 7, 2015  5:16pm

gutbomb86

Yeah well stated if you’re looking for a gross mischaracterization of reality.

I’ve been in the private sector my entire career - with more than a dozen employers on my resume, including both management and scheduling in my responsibilities - and have never once worked at a company that was so poorly run that they had to hire temps to cover shifts when people were out. Never.

So… here you go Biff:

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!

What kind of employer doesn’t build some give into a schedule?

Must be the kind who comments online throughout the workday, complaining all the while about how hard it is to run a biz (anyone else see the incongruity there?) and can only process a discussion in absolutes. And offer flip nonsense. Lighten up. Locate a clue.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!

posted by: gutbomb86 | July 7, 2015  5:24pm

gutbomb86

Biff you must work at the place where money is printed or something. Can’t maintain revenue when a single employee is missing! Wowza!

“Well we printed less money today because one of our employees had the nerve to go have a baby…”

posted by: gutbomb86 | July 7, 2015  5:39pm

gutbomb86

All kidding aside - if your business is so marginal that you can’t even abide a payroll deduction from employees to support a fund for family leave, then you’re probably not going to last anyway. And it’s possible that is the case - a lot of industries and their products are being phased out or made obsolete by technology these days. I can see a big tax increase would really be salt in the wound if your company is already in hospice, so to speak.

But seriously - I don’t get the opposition.

It’s a concept at this point, so who knows whether it would ever get off the ground, but the concept is employee funded.

We apparently live in a country where we the people with capital value the family so little that we have self-described “job creators” or “makers” who can’t even show a minimal willingness to consider an employee-funded leave program ... maybe you ought to just pack it in if that’s where you are at. That’s no way to live or to build a company that’s also a healthy community in itself. Those are the companies that people want to work for - and work hard. Those are the companies where people aren’t just punching a clock.

posted by: Politijoe | July 7, 2015  6:38pm

Politijoe

@Gutbomb: again a well articulated response based in fact and reason. Unfortunately, I believe your further assessment is also correct, there is an element that remains oppositional for the sake of opposition as is evidenced by this comment thread. Nevertheless, in spite of this low-information contingent, I do think its important to simply side step the false dichotomies, conjecture and fear they embrace and continue as you have to present a framework based on facts, data and evidence. The tide is turning and 2016 should provide opportunities to advance progressive agendas, like paid family leave, that benefit middle class economics.

posted by: art vandelay | July 7, 2015  7:35pm

art vandelay

I’m sorry, but if a person seeks employment with a corporation that provides paid family leave, 4 weeks vacation and every other government mandated benefit, go find a job in Greece or Europe.  Better yet work for the federal or a state government where after 20 years you’re guaranteed a full pension for life and gold plated benefits. There is something seriously wrong with our state government where 40% of the budget is earmarked for mandated labor and pension costs.  Scott Walker did something about it in Wisconsin.  Massachusetts governor Charlie Baker is about to. In Connecticut however, voters decided to stay the course with Dannel (Capt. E.J. Titanic Smith) P. Malloy.

posted by: art vandelay | July 7, 2015  7:58pm

art vandelay

@Gutbomb860,
If an employee feels so strongly about family leave, he or she should establish a separate for that purpose. An employer should not be mandated by the state to do so. 

Your analogy of a company being on the brink of insolvency is bogus.  I worked for an excellent Fortune 500 company for 25 years.  Each year we received a wage dividend and had the choice of cashing or depositing the check it in a 401K plan.  After 5 years of service a third week of vacation was granted. After 10 another week and so on until a maximum of six. 

Many well established solid companies are not in a position to extend these benefits. They should not be mandated by the state.  In most cases if an employer receives a specific request by an employee, a mutual agreement can be reached where both parties will benefit.

Mandates like paid family leave are reasons why companies decide to leave Connecticut.

Greece is at the point where there is no one left to pull the cart for everyone else.  People on the cart now have to get out an pull it which they are refusing to do.  Connecticut is not far behind.

posted by: dano860 | July 8, 2015  6:27am

Art is right, individual firms and employees can work out acceptable agreements between themselves. As I’ve always said “, I went there looking for a job and when I leave I’ll be looking for another.”
Just the other day Portland, Me. passed their own minimum wage rate, $10.10 from $7.25 beginning January 1, 2016. Note it’s not the whole State, just Portland.
The things that truly need addressing should be done at the employer and local level where the results will be implemented and felt directly. Years ago Manchester, Ct. passed an ordinance requiring that companies pay living wages, how’s that working? I never heard anything afterwards.

posted by: Politijoe | July 8, 2015  6:45am

Politijoe

It seems ridiculous to belabor the obvious point that all fortune 500 corporations include the LONG list of employee benefits previously mentioned and not because they’re nice guys, because they are mandated to provide these benefits.The government mandates this because as M. Dietrich pointed out, there is a greater societal component to consider. Of course, the obvious contradiction is the very same individuals who want an 18th century government in a 21st century world are the very same individuals who, while enjoying their paid holidays, vacation days, lunch breaks and weekends then listen to hate radio and post on comment boards about the ruination of America at the hands of organized labor and government mandates that require employers to provide the very benefits they are enjoying. These are the same individuals who share gross mischaracterizations such as comparing the Greece economy with the U.S… all of which simply indicates a very limited worldview and hypocritical self-mythology that if it wasn’t so dangerously delusional it might be comical.

posted by: M_Dietrich | July 8, 2015  7:13am

M_Dietrich

It is absurd to bring Greece into this discussion when nearly every other civilized nation on the planet has paid leave. Providing or requiring paid leave will not bankrupt a country, and you can argue that not providing this benefit bankrupts a society in other ways. On a macroeconomic level, paid leave encourages people to stay in the workforce - and the more people working equals a stronger economy. Our country is forecasted to have a significant problem over the next decade with a declining workforce and while paid leave is not the main or only solution, providing benefits to middle class families that encourage continued participation in the workforce is, in my opinion, an important element in strengthening our economy.

posted by: Biff Winnetka | July 8, 2015  8:25am

posted by: M_Dietrich | July 8, 2015 7:13am

“It is absurd to bring Greece into this discussion…”

OK, how about Illinois!


Connecticut is a 40 year veteran of the “Give more and more benefits to our base and raise taxes to pay for it all” Progressive model.  But Illinois has perfected that model and taken it to new heights.  Two states, same path.  IL is just a bit further down the road than CT.  Well, the fat lady has begun singing in Illinois and is warming up her act in Connecticut.

July 6, 2015

“Chicago, (IL) state lawmakers consider tax hikes”

http://abc7chicago.com/politics/chicago-state-lawmakers-consider-tax-hikes-/831874/

“Chicago homeowners could face up to a 30 percent hike in their property taxes to pay for the city’s financial problems.”

“Not only is that much of a city property tax increase possible, there are efforts under way on the state and county levels to raise income and sales taxes, all because politicians are running out of options to pay their public worker pension debt.”

30% property tax hikes to pay for municipal pensions!  30%!  I’ll save this post so I can say #ToldYa here in CT, but Malloy’s 2011 and 2015 record tax increases will pale in comparison to the CT state tax hikes in our future.

At the municipal level, the residential real estate market is about to roll over, again, so what do you think happens to tax revenue and future tax hikes at the municipal level? Revenue down, taxes up.

Some people in CT see our future and are leaving before the fat lady starts singing here.  Some people don’t see it, or refuse to see it.  That’s cool.  Because in the REAL world, everyone doesn’t get a trophy.

posted by: art vandelay | July 8, 2015  9:48am

art vandelay

I really take offense from leftist/statists calling conservative talk shows “Hate Radio”.  There is nothing hateful about it.  Hate radio IMHO would be shows promoting national socialism,  racism, and the KKK.

Conservative talk radio does nothing of a sort. It tells it like it is, no holes barred. In most cases it tells the truth, and liberals cannot stand the truth.  It’s why the rating are so high.  Liberal socialist radio shows do poorly because of low ratings. The market exposes these shows for the lies and hypocrisies the expound. The result is poor ratings.  If liberal shows were so good commentators like Alan Combs,  Ed Schultz & Reverend Al would be at the top of their game.  In the radio biz it’s all about the ratings.

posted by: Politijoe | July 8, 2015  2:04pm

Politijoe

As usual we have a conservative who once again puts profits and ratings above civility, the greater good and common sense.

Using hateful rhetoric, radio hosts have cast immigrants as disease ridden, equated pro-immigrant organizations with neo-Nazis, called Islam an evil religion and claimed the Obama administration is promoting race riots. These hosts spin racism, misogyny, homophobia, hatred and lies on our public radio daily. Heres just a sampling of what conservatives define as “honest talk”

• During the Democratic National Convention in August 2008, conservative radio hosts KFI AM 640 John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou wished that a “skinhead speed freak” would climb into the rafters at Invesco field and take a shot at Barack Obama.

• In May 2009 Bill Handel joked that we should euthanize Armenians to reduce the population.

• In March of 2010 Bill Handel used the N-word to describe members of the Congressional Black Caucus.

Rush: asked “why no one was referring to convicted molester, Jerry Sandusky, as a gay guy”

• Called Sandra Fluke a “slut” and “prostitute” when she advocated for birth control.

• Called undocumented immigrants “invasive species,” “mollusks,” and “spermatozoa.”

• Compares gay marriage to pedophilia.

Glenn Beck:

• “Barack Obama … chose to use his name Barack for a reason — to identify, not with America — you don’t take the name Barack to identify with America. You take the name Barack to identify with what? Your heritage? The heritage, maybe, of your father in Kenya, who is a radical”

• “This president, I think, has exposed himself over and over again as a guy who has a deep-seated hatred for white people … I’m not saying he doesn’t like white people, I’m saying he has a problem. This guy is, I believe, a racist.”

Michael Savage:

• “President Obama is responsible for making the enterovirus epidemic worse with his unaccompanied minors from Guatemala, Nicaragua, and El Salvador, where the virus is endemic.”

Ann Coulter

• “I will bet you by the end of the weekend more Americans will have been killed by Mexicans than by sharks.”

The dirty secret of talk radio’s success is the use of hate speech masquerading as free speech. Corporate media conglomerates not only make hate talk possible but make anti-gay, anti-woman, and overtly racist language enormously profitable.

posted by: M_Dietrich | July 9, 2015  6:37am

M_Dietrich

@Biff, the absurdity lies in this being a post about paid leave, which to my knowledge has not been a major component of the economic downfall of any of the other nations or states that offer it. I might agree that CT has serious issues with its tax and spending policies, but I think that’s irrelevant to a discussion about paid leave - something that might actually be a very powerful benefit for the middle class.

posted by: art vandelay | July 9, 2015  11:17pm

art vandelay

Newsflash!
Donald Trump surging in the polls!  Why?
He’s telling it like it is.  He’s exposing the left for who they are.  Anarchists bent on destroying this great nation by turning it into a 3rd world cesspool.

It’s time for America to wake up and elect someone who will take this country back.

posted by: art vandelay | July 13, 2015  12:35pm

art vandelay

@Politijoe,
I couldn’t let you get away with your deceitful comments without a retort.
What Ann Coulter, Michael Savage,  Glenn Beck & Donald Trump are saying is spot on.  I will agree that the other obscure commentators you mentioned are exactly what you stated.  There is no room in this country for those type of comments.  They are indeed over the top.

What the left is doing to this country is slowly transforming it into a National Socialist Totalitarian State. The left’s plan is working perfectly the way Lenin, Stalin & Saul Alinsky predicted.

Saul Alinsky’s writings have influenced every left wing socialist politician in this country including Obama & Clinton.  Hillary went as far as to write her college thesis on his writings.  Prior to Obama becoming President was a community organizer straight out of the pages of Alinsky & Bill Ayers another Che/Castro style revolutionist.

Alinsky & Lenin believed there were 8 steps to transforming a nation into a Marxist state.

1.Healthcare.  Control healthcare and you control a nation. The state can then decide who lives and who dies. The Nazi’s were the first to establish universal health care.  How did that turn out I ask?

2. Poverty. Increase the poverty level as high as possible.  Poor people are easier to control and will not fight back as long as the state provides everything they need to live.  Our current welfare state with food stamps, free government housing and Obamaphones are working just fine.

3. Debt.  Increase the national debt to unsustainable levels.  That way the state can increase taxes insuring more people in poverty,
and more people relying on government assistance.

4. Gun Control. Remove the ability of the people to defend themselves or resist government rule.

5. Welfare. Take control of every aspect of a persons life. Food clothing, shelter & income.

6. Education. Take control of what people read write, and listen to.  Most importantly take control of what children learn in school.  In essence a Maoist style of indoctrination.

7. Religion Remove all belief in God from the government, schools and public life.  Remove any hope that isn’t government bestowed.

8. Class Warfare.  Divide the people into the wealthy and the poor.  This will cause discontent. It will then be easier to take (Tax) the wealthy to support the poor.

Politijoe,  These are exactly the items you commend and profess to in your commentary to every article written in CT Newsjunkie.

They are exactly what the founding fathers feared, and unfortunately for people who believe in individual freedom and liberty such as myself, many items I illustrated have come to fruition in this nation and must be stopped before it’s too late.

In some cases it already has.

posted by: Politijoe | July 13, 2015  2:41pm

Politijoe

@Art: your propensity to continue debating the hate radio nonsense regarding Ann Coulter, Michael Savage, Glenn Beck & Donald Trumps statements is comical. Further compromising your argument is defining Rush as “an obscure commentator” yet you lumped him into this category. More importantly you willfully agree and defend the sentiments and statements by Donald Trump that Mexicans are rapist and criminals. You agree with Glenn Beck that Obama is a racist and you also agree with Ann Coulter that this weekend more people will be killed by Mexicans than sharks?.....seriously are there any conservatives on this thread who have the courage to stand against this type of silly thinking from one of their own?


Furthermore, your belief ” Alinsky & Lenin believed there were 8 steps to transforming a nation into a Marxist state.” Obviously referring to “How to create a social state”  which has been falsely attributed to Saul Alinsky and of course bears repeating that Alinsky never wrote how to create a social state. This is an obvious attempt from an uninformed individual who persist in comparing something they’ve never read with an illusion of knowledge. Just a further illustration of the malady of misinformation that has become the hallmark of modern conservatism. Obama never even met Alinsky, who died in 1972, when Barack Obama was a ten-year-old child. Hillary Clinton, has been linked with Alinsky because she wrote her senior thesis on the topic of “An Analysis of the Alinsky Model” while she was a student at Wellesley College in 1969.

More importantly, the above-quoted list of steps attributed to Saul Alinski is another example of an intellectually lazy and clumsey attempt to tie the names of Saul Alinsky with those of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. According to multiple sources and my own readings, the list is not something taken from the actual writings of Saul Alinsky, nor does it even sound like something he would have written. For instance the line about “controlling health care” is anachronistic for his era, and the idea of “increasing the poverty level as high as possible” is the very antithesis of what Alinsky worked to achieve.  Of course one would have to have actually read something of Alinski to know this. This list is simply a modern variant of the decades-old, apocryphal Communist Rules for Revolution piece that was originally passed along without attribution until Alinsky’s name became attached to it (presumably because someone out there thought it sounded like something Alinsky might have written). Saul Alinskys 1971 book Rules for Radicals is devoted solely to tactics and does not specify any particular targets of those tactics such as health care, religion or gun control.

Remind us again the definition of deceitfulness?

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