The National Debt

The U.S. federal budget deficit for fiscal year 2018 is $440 billion.

FY 2018 covers October 1, 2017 through September 30, 2018.

The deficit occurs because the U.S. government spending of $4.094 trillion is higher than its revenue of $3.654 trillion.

(Source: "2018 Budget. Table 2," Office of Management and Budget, March 16, 2017. “Mid-Session Review Fiscal Year 2017. Table S-5,” OMB, July 15, 2016.)

What is the budget for running Congress itself? 
— Dale W.

The 2011 Legislative Branch Appropriations bill, which includes Congress' operating budget, totaled $4.63 billion, which includes $926 million for the Senate, $1.371 billion for the House of Representatives, $337.2 million for the Capitol Police, which includes 1,800 Capitol Police officers and 393 civilians, and $147 million for the Government Printing Office.


Just 10% on this budget would cyt 463 million!

 And thats was in 2011!


We seem to have 535 congressmen and women more concerned about reelection than running our country as their position dictates

As I watch the news and see others around me, I am greatly concerned about how severe this year's flu outbreak has become.

I had the flu shot as prescribed and so far (knock on wood), I have been able to dodge the demon bug, now they flu vaccine is showing to be non effective. Last night a report from Canada said the shot is only 10% effective.

When I had my flu shot at a local pharmacy, i presented my insurance documentation and paid nothing further. My question is, how much did the insurance pay for the medication administered Everyone I know is concerned about the cost of health insurance coverage and how it continues to rise along with the cost of healthcare itself. The flu shot seems to me is a extreme and scary example of what is driving....

  • The pharamaceutical company manufactures the drug to save the masses.
  • The insurance companies agree to pay the drug companies for the vaccine.
  • The insurance companies agree to pay physicians and pharmacies to administer the shots. 
  • The insurance companies then raise premiums to cover rising cost
  • The vaccine is shown to be ineffective.

I wonder what the reply would be if the healthcare industry was asked to compensate for the ineffective vaccines?

Will they give a 90% refund?

I didn't watch the State of the Union Address Tuesday night. I did record it but delayed viewing.

On Wednesday morning social media was covered with comments and opinions as to how the speech went, how substantial was the content, and how the opposing sides reacted to the speech and each other. 

A main issue being bantered was "unity."

Regardless of what was spoken in the oratory, by either side, the country is not unified. The two party system has become a "what's in it for me?" position by most of our elected officials. For example, the recent shutdown should have, and could have, been resolved well before the situation became imminent. The column at right shows a minor explanation of the national debt.

When it did come to happen, the solution should have been a simple "how can we prevent shutdown?," or, "how can we quit spending more than we bring in?" Instead, Congress made it a bargaining tool to gain benefit for personal/party agendas on both sides. Yep, that's both sides! 

The solution was to do a stopgap plan good for only days/weeks and go back to the bargaining table. Neither side wants to give up funding for any program their party, home electoral base or corporate backer will not benefit from.


It's simple, we have the fox guarding the henhouse. Congress will not enact any legislation to police or govern themselves.

They are their own "special interest group." They enact healthcare for everyone except themselves. They vote on their own funding procedures, their own retirement plans, how they do their own business within the government and sometimes, they legislate for the people.

Until the voting populace puts aside special interests, and takes candidates to the ballot box for the good of evryone, unity will still be a rarity.

Well the Super Bowl has come an gone! To me, it was a good game. It was competitive and I personally was pleased with the outcome.

I was not personally impressed with the halftime show, but appreciative of the tribute to Minneapolis's own... Prince. Regardless of whether or not you followed Prince, liked or disliked his music, or how you felt about his performance, he was a strong supporter of Minnesota. He did his films in the Twin Cities and his production studio was in Chanhassen, a suburb. He was quietly active in the community and the folks in that area appreciated him greatly.

I was appreciative of the posiivity of most of the ads. The Mass Mutual ad was a good review of good things that average people do for others.... with media hype, party bias or grandstanding. Maybe our elected officials were watching and learned.