"I wish they would only take me as I am" - Vincent Van Gogh               "How Can I believe in God when just last week I got my tounge caught in the roller of an electric typewriter?" - Woody Allen              "Our truest life is when we are in dreams awake" - Henry David Thoreau              "I took a speed reading course and read 'War and Peace' in twenty minutes. It involves Russia" - Woody Allen            "When promulgating esoteric cogitations, eschew platitudinous ponderosities" - Mark Rowan, my father            "Up, sluggard, and waste not life, for in the grave there will be sleep enough" - Benjamin Franklin             "What really interests me is whether God had any choice in the creation of the world." - Albert Einstein            "Welfare's purpose should be to eliminate, as far as possible, the need for its own existence" - Ronald Reagan            "It's odd that you can get so anesthetized by your own pain or your own problem that you don't quite fully share the hell of someone close to you." - Lady Bird Johnson              "I still want to be the candidate for guys with confederate flags in their pickup truck" - Howard Dean

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Graduate of the University of Oregon, Married for 4-1/2 years to my High School sweetheart. I am currently residing in Cleveland while I attend med school.

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    Sunday, July 30, 2006

    House Republicans push Wage increase?

    Last week the House passed HR 5970, the Estate Tax and Extension of Tax Relief Act, with predominantly Republican Support. In essence, the bill creates permanent estate tax relief (set to expire in 2010) and protects other tax relief efforts that are now only temporary. Each of these are in good agreement with the Republican platform and much of the work Republicans have done since 2000. To that end, I support the bill and, had it not been for another provision, I would have lauded the passage as a success.

    So, what is that provision? One that would dramatically increase the nationaly minimum wage. For me, this is a deal-breaker. I have never supported minimum wage increases-even making it in Oregon in 2002, when it came up on the ballot. The minimum wage is one of the worst things ever to happen to the poor, and increasing it only exacerbates inflation and unemployment. Furthermore, most minimum wage earners are not poor.

    Yet, while most coverage of the bill's passage seem to indicate that it was pushed through by Republicans, that is not entirely true. The bill passed on Republican support, but Congressional Democrats have been pushing for the wage increase for some time, and Republicans have consistently - until now - not supported it.

    Senate passage is unlikely, thankfully. However, it will be unfortunate if this small aspects blocks an otherwise strong bill. Ideally, the provision will be eliminated in the Senate, and sent back to the House for ratification.

    Cross-Posted at


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