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General: How you have been affected in this economy and what you want to hear from President Obama during his State of the Union address?

Comments: 192

I am really concerned about education, its progress or lack of progress. We need to revamp the system and come up with a better way of educationing our kids.

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Shakila Busby
Alliance AFT
Arlington, TX

I consider myself middle class and have a masters in education and never thought I would have to worry about my teacher retirement or the rising inflation. I worry about my son going to college and not getting a loan to go to school. I have been trying to save but rising health care costs and inflation have reduced my ability to save. I feel that the middle class is being ignored and that the upper class is not taxed at the same level as myself. The lower class has programs to help them go to school and meet their bills. Budgetary cuts are taking that away from them. I worry about my husband keeping his job.Fix JOBS & ABILTYTO GO to COLLEGE

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Diane Krolczyk
houston hft
Houston, TX

When will we see an increase in minimum wages?

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Rachel Rodriguez
Fort Worth, TX

Make the jobs bill a top priority, with taxing the wealthy and corporate America to shrink the deficit. Make the Republicans take a stand that they oppose both.

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Harold and Karen Buttitta
3 Village Teachers
Boynton Beach, FL

Dear Mr. President: I would like to hear you talk about Education and Social Security.I'm a retired educator and I'm sick and tired of hearing teachers getting laid off due to tight budgets.Lets put our brain to work and do something about it. Social Security is fixed income for us and the Federal Government should not be playing around with our hard earned money to straighten out their messes.

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Jay Brown
AFTRetirees #8029
Albuquerque, NM

I have been affected by the outrageous price of general commodities. Food,clothing,gasoline,utilities etc.have risen above our basic means. I have not been given a raise in 3 years. I am living on the same income but paying more for eveything. My son is in college and trying to assist in his educational endeavors has added an additional burden to our household income. Our house is in need of major repairs, but there is no money to make those repairs. I can't sell to get out from under that debt. I want President Obama to know that the rubber band is stretched pretty tight and it is scary.

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maria gonzalez
corpus christi, TX

“As President of the United States, I accept the responsibility for keeping the nation safe. Iran will not have an atomic weapon during my presidency. I will provide leadership to insure that the US military is adequately funded. On or before the November, 2012, election the national debt will be at or lower than it was when I took office, and unemployment will be no higher than it was when George W. Bush left office. I have reconsidered my decision to sign a flawed health care bill. I will formulate new legislation and request Congress to submit a new bill for my signature. I will design and submit a balanced budget to Congress.”

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J ARTHUR MELANSON
1019
DENTON, TX

The impact of not getting a raise has benn particularly hard on my family and me. The insurance has gone up making it really hard to see a doctor or even to get medicine. Not only did I not get a raise but I lost my special education stippend so that others could keep their job. It should not be like this. Education is the most important field there is.

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Barbara Powell
Richardson, TX

Please give us your vision of what government should be and how you plan to make the vision become reality in the future. Show your passion for improving economic equality and justice for all in our country and describe how educational initiatives fit into your vision. Thanks, KJ Lowry

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KJ Lowry
Carroll ISD
Paradise, TX

I have been lucky enough to have a job and work all my life. Now I am ready to retire and I am looking a some extrordinary bills. First is my health insurance cost, which I figure will cost me over $900.00 dollars per month. My retirement will amount to just over $2,000 per month. I am I suppose to survive. I am also from your state of Illinos and of course the state legislature is threatning to fool with the retirement benifits. I am furious with how the governments big and small misuse the monies that should have been saved for my use at retirement. I like my independence and worry very much about how I will make ends meet in the future.

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Marie Chavosky
943
Oak Lawn, IL

In this economy, my number one problem has been twofold, gasoline prices and health insurance. #1- Health- As a baby boomer I have diabetes and related heart, circulatory issues. I pay the highest premiums available under my school policy, yet still have enormous bills for health care and medications. I am forced by my policy to choose- higher medication prices at Walmart or other national pharmacies or participate in a mail order scam where I have to pay for 3 months at a time which I cannot use until I pay in advance- holding my meds in hock. #2- gas prices in far west Texas are horrid. To drive 400 miles round trip to doctors? Well...

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John Chitwood
Presidio, TX

I've retraineed myself as a "Care Giver / Certified Nursing Assistant". More funds will be used to get me out of debt. My sole home is my "Roadtrek" a converted Chevy Express 2007. I owe $65,000 on it and an additional $30,000 on a loan against my teacher deferred annuity I can't touch. Social Security & my early retirement make my life possible. I am greatful for my blessings but feel swamped by my outstanding debt. Unlike houses, my Roadtrek being a motor vehicle is deatined to deteriorate and loose value over time. I still identify with the house owners mortgages. Nationally, reduce all war machines & increase the Peace Corps Model

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Cara Bissell
NYC UFT
Green Valley, AZ

I have my job, but my district lost para-professionals to state funding cuts. What does the President have planned for stimulating job growth without congressional support?

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MIke Bernhardt
Clifton, TX

Re: Education: The answer is not an even heavier reliance on value-added assessment and student test scores tied to teacher evaluation. The research findings indicate test scores should not be used for major stakes teacher evaluation. Period! The Danielson Frameworks combined with a professional portfolio, peer and subject area supervision, mentoring programs, student achievement and a heavy dose of monitored self-assessment would be a better route to go. Too much reliance, too, on more charter schools where the track record is not all that favorable as the small minority which are success stories are heavily supported by business/foundations

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Charles Kochheiser
Webster, NY
Gansevoort, NY

I want to hear that the President AND every Democrat in Congress will go to the mat for the Social Security benefits that retired Americans have PAID FOR! We had Social Security payments taken OUT OF OUR SALARIES with the proviso that "our benefits" would be there when we retired. Congress has continually helped themselves to OUR MONEY to pay for their "pet projects" without putting it back and "conveniently" forgetting that it was NOT THEIR MONEY TO SPEND! I WANT TO HEAR THAT THERE WILL BE NO MORE "THEFT" of SOCIAL SECURITY MONIES!

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Linda R
Oregon School Employees Assoc.
Gresham, OR

Mr. President, The number of Americans living in poverty has increased significantly. What will you do to meet the needs of the growing numbers of children, women and men struggling to get enough to eat and have adequate housing. Please revisit the FDR Memorial Park in Washington. Reread the quotes. This is America today. The American people need bold action from you. We need it now. Thank you. Sincerely, Margaret Perri, Retired Educator and Union Member

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Margaret Perri
Wisconsin AFT Local 3605
West Salem, WI

Ive been affected, with trying to suport two boys, as a single parent, one 21yrs and the other 19. College expense, food expense, living expenses everything is outrageously expensive. My 19 year old trying to find a job, isn't easy. My taxes are through the roof, I don't know how any middle class family survive's, on one income. I would like Obama to take a good look at are economy, I fully beleive he will know exactly what to do. Thank you

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Kimberly Arras
uup benefit trust fund
schenectady, NY

Take goverment controls away.Stop bailing out banks.In 1986-87, if a bank was failing the FCIC stepped in and took over until another bank bought them out. The Government did not use tax payers money and bail them out.Get rid of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.They should not have been bailed out with tax payer's money.They are part of the reason why some people have lost their homes.Hold the people in wall street accountable for their part in the loss of so many people's life savings.They lined their pockets and others lost what they had worked for all of their lives.Have people in political offices pay into social security and pay equal % taxes.

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Dottie Fabian
Edinburg, TX

I am glad that young adult offspring can be included on my health insurance. My daughter works 40+ hours a week for a small company that does not provide health insurance. She makes just above minimum wage, and would not have been able to afford a recent visit to the doctor without insurance. When will dental care be added? After all, the health of the mouth has a great influence on a person's overall health. Dental care is out of my daughter's reach financially. She makes too much for help through the government, but not enough to pay for it herself. I cannot afford to pay for her to go, either. What will happen when she turns 26?

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Cindy Covey
Afton
Oxford, NY

The President should consider expanding aid to colleges and should work to eliminate student loan debt. I also believe that the President should create jobs by rebuilding infrastructure throughout the US.

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Rafael Ovalle
PSC-CUNY
New York, NY

I would like for the President to state all his accomplishments since he took office. I also would like for him to talk about Welfare and Foodstamps and give a record on who represents the highest number of welfare receipents by race, sex and ages. Talk about the Republicans destroying the Public school system and Unions. Discuss how the Republicans are taking us back to the 1950's in discrimination, voting rights etc.

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Joycelyn Thomas
400
pittsburgh, PA

I'd like to hear him say he will develop the pipeline, take all the unnecessary EPA regulations and taxes off businesses so they can grow, repeal his illegal medical plan, stop blaming those who create jobs for his problems, stop raising the debt ceiling, take a stand against Iran's nuclear program. Oh gosh, if he did these things, that would make him a Republican instead of a socialist. Sorry, my mistake. He should RESIGN!!

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ALICE BARR
AFT
Zephyrhills, FL

Here in Florida, our Governor and the legislature has turned their backs on the working class in the state and have or are trying to ban any employee from belonging to any union within the state or allowing any union to do business with the state. Our Governor has cut $1.8 billion from the education budget in Florida. He has refused government funds to help the state with it's crisis medical care for the poor and has laid off workers from the state's first responders and frced pay cuts onto those same first responders.

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Herbert Belcher
Hillsborough County Teachers Association
Seffner, FL

I was laid off from my teaching job due to the devastation of the economy by the banks. I would like the president to say that he is going to hold them responsible for the problems that they have caused and to make them pay for the damage from their own money not from taxpayer funds. I would like to hear him say he is going to work for the reinstatement of the regulatory laws whose repeal allowed the banks and financial institutions to recklessly invest in products that were doomed to failure. Lastly I would like him to say he is going to stop funding the government by cutting social programs and raise the taxes of those who can afford them.

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Ken Anderson
Troy T A
Stone Ridge, NY

President Obama should address the issues of jobs, a reduction in the Pentagon budget, and our crumbling infrastructure.

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David Gurowsky
UFT, Local 2
Suffern, NY

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