January 2012
THE PARTY LINE

 

I HOPE THAT EVERYONE HAS A HAPPY, HEALTHY, AND WEALTHY
NEW YEAR!

JANUARY MONTHLY LUNCHEON

We started off the New Year with a bang! We met today at the Star Family Dining on John R and Eleven Mile road in Madison Heights. The ‘Cream of the Crop’ were there!

Those who attended were:

Ruth Natiw

Maggie Mc Nicol

Betty Snyder

Dolores Balderrama

Franz Breidenich

Ron Rhodes

Judy Rhodes

Ray Kurr

Jaye Karis

Gene Oakie

Kay Buhl

Blanche Cooke

Mel Proxmire

Arlene Mihelcich

Betty Reddman

Norm Wilson

 

 

And your Hostess, Liz Lorence

Ron & Judy Rhodes came all the way from New Baltimore. Good to see Kay Buhl back again. She must be feeling better. Jaye Karis and Betty Snyder joined us.

I made the announcement about paying $99.90 for Medicare this year and everyone agreed that they paid the same.

50/50 RAFFLE

Ron Rhodes won $9.00 and Ron drew the next ticket and, guess what, he had that winning ticket! So, he told us to draw again.

Franz Breidenich won $8.00 and Franz donated the $8.00 back to the Club. Thank you Franz. When Franz drew the next ticket, he drew Ron Rhodes ticket. Ron Rhodes donated the $6.00 back to the Club. Thank you Ron.

My thanks to all who bought raffle tickets and participated in the drawing.

Gene Oakie brought in a box of Chocolate covered Cherries to raffle off. But I forgot about them and some of our guests and already turned in their raffle tickets, so, we gave it to our Waitress. She was so surprised; she couldn’t believe that they were for her.

We discussed our future for the Club. There doesn’t seem to be anyone wanting to take over the newsletter. I promised that the newsletter would continue for 2012, as there were people who already paid for the year. So, we have a year to talk about the newsletter and see if there is anyone who would like to take it over.

The Monthly Luncheons they expressed that they would like to continue, as well as are Spring and Fall Luncheons.

Jean Flack had offered to pay for a mailing to those on our Spring & Fall Luncheons List. I figure that they only come to our Spring and Fall Luncheons and have the opportunity to participate in the Monthly Luncheons and they don’t attend, so, that is their vote for the Spring and Fall Luncheon. We can make an announcement at the Spring Luncheon and ask if there is anyone that would like to take over the newsletter and see if we get any takers. I received a phone call from one of our members in Florida and he expressed how much the newsletters mean to him, his only connection to MBT.

I get a lot of letters and cards thanking me for all that I do for the Club and I know that they really do appreciate it. But due to my declining health and volunteer work that I am involved in (I tried to resign from that too! And they begged me to stay awhile longer) you can see the heavy workload that I am experiencing. Maybe, I would have better luck in asking for volunteers to help me with my housework!

AT&T Ameritech /SBC Retirees - We are AASBCR Blue Bulletin

Vol.7 No.1
January 9, 2012
Proudly working on behalf of retirees of the Bell System and successor companies of the New AT&T, located worldwide

AT&T - Retiree Prescription Drug Plan
AT&T has published an e-benefit notification (with paper announcements soon to follow) concerning a change in the prescription benefit for retirees effective
January 1, 2013. AT&T HR explains that this change will affect:

"All previously bargained for Medicare eligible retirees and certain management Medicare eligible retirees and their dependents or surviving spouses who are not in an HMO or in a plan like the AT&T Medical Plan that has combined deductibles or out of pocket maximums."

The announcement follows:
"Subject line: Custom Medicare Part D Plan Coming in 2013

Dear Retiree Health Plan Participant:
To assist in continuing to provide high quality benefits, starting January 1, 2013, we will be partnering with SilverScript Insurance Company to provide a custom Medicare Part D prescription drug plan for you and your Medicare-eligible dependents covered under AT&T's medical plans. SilverScript is a subsidiary of CVS Caremark. This benefit will continue to work in conjunction with your medical plan benefit to provide your prescription drug coverage.

You are not required to take any action, and you can expect to receive additional information in 2012 regarding this partnership.

Marty R. Webb
Vice President, Benefits
AT&T Inc."

AASBCR will continue to acquire more information about this change and how it will affect retirees.

Get Ready for the New Year!

So this coming year I resolve
To begin and end each day with prayer
To taste what I eat – especially breakfast
To walk more than I sit
To listen more than I speak,
To let the small things slide and the big things be confronted
To sing more in church than in the shower,
To allow more mystery and laughter in my life,
To be more compassionate than competitive, allowing myself more second place finishes,
To make more opportunities happen,
To communicate more than quarrel,
To get second opinions on my judgments,
To live in the present moment more than the past or future,
To eat salads and fruits more than chips and sweets.

Lord, in 2012 I resolve to live up to at least one of these resolutions!

Thanks to Eileen Marcelain for sharing this with us.


Reinvention News Header

The most underreported story of 2011

One of the things I’ve learned during my first year as governor is that the most important government reforms often fly under the radar, virtually unnoticed.
Take for example action the administration recently took to deal with Michigan’s unfunded liabilities problem. This reform will save taxpayers $5.6 BILLION by asking state employees to contribute to the cost of their retirement health care benefits.

Saving $5.6 billion may not sound like much at a time when the Federal government is racking up debt in the trillions, but to put that number and what it means to our state in perspective, that’s comparable to a family with a $145,000 mortgage refinancing its loan agreement and reducing the amount it owes to only $89,000. That’s a huge savings! Michigan basically cut this long-term debt by a third.

So, does this mean taxpayers can expect a hefty refund from the state? Unfortunately not yet; after decades of mismanagement and chronic overspending, we still have a lot of work to do to get our fiscal house in order. But it does mean that in the future instead of spending money to pay off long-term liabilities, we can direct that money to other priorities such as education.

2011 was not easy. But by making the tough decisions now we’ve laid the foundation for Michigan’s economic recovery, leading The Detroit News to write that 2011, “Might go down as Michigan’s most consequential year in terms of unshackling the state from its obsolete economic past and positioning it for new prosperity in the 21st century.”
And we are already seeing results. Michigan is experiencing the 2nd fastest economic recovery in the nation and our unemployment rate is below 10 percent for the first time in more than three years. With the new, simplified Corporate Income Tax now in effect, we should see continued improvement and job creation.
2012 belongs to Michigan.


Signature
Gov. Rick Snyder


EDITORIAL: Michigan finally moves to get business right (Detroit News)
Last January, Michigan ranked at or near the bottom of most measures of economic activity and attractiveness. Today, its recovery is leading the nation, and the people who make decisions about where to invest are viewing the state in a far more favorable light.

Warren Buffet Immediate Reform Recommendation

If you haven't yet seen/read this piece from Warren Buffet, it is really worth reading.

Warren Buffet, in a recent interview with CNBC, offers one of the best quotes about the debt ceiling:

"I could end the deficit in 5 minutes," he told CNBC. "You just pass a law that says that anytime there is a deficit of more than 3% of GDP, all sitting members of Congress are ineligible for re-election.”

The 26th amendment (granting the right to vote for 18 year-olds) took only 3 months & 8 days to be ratified! Why? Simple! The people demanded it. That was in 1971 - before computers, e-mail, cell phones, etc.

Of the 27 amendments to the Constitution, seven (7) took one (1) year or less to become the law of the land - all because of public pressure.

Warren Buffet is asking each addressee to forward this email to a minimum of twenty people on their address list; in turn ask each of those to do likewise.

In three days, most people in The United States of America will have the message. This is one idea that really should be passed around.

CONGRESSIONAL REFORM ACT OF 2011

1. No Tenure / No Pension.
A Congressman/woman collects a salary while in office and receives no pay when they're out of office.

2. Congress (past, present & future) participates in Social
Security. All funds in the Congressional retirement fund would be moved to the Social Security system immediately. All future funds flow into the Social Security system, and Congress participates with the American people. It may not be used for any other purpose.

3. Congress can purchase their own retirement plan, just as all Americans do.

4. Congress will no longer be able to vote themselves a pay raise. Congressional pay will rise by the lower of CPI or 3%.

5. Congress loses their current health care system and participates in the same health care system as the American people.

6. Congress must equally abide by all laws they impose on the American people.

7. All contracts with past and present Congressmen/women are void effective 1/1/12. The American people did not make this contract with Congressmen/women. Congressmen/women made all these contracts for themselves. Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, so ours should serve their term(s), then go home and back to work.

PROGRAMS REPUBLICAN HOUSE PROPROSE CUTTING

These are all the programs that the new Republican House has proposed cutting. Read to the end.

TOTAL SAVINGS: $2.5 Trillion over Ten Years

 Legislative Ledger, January 9, 2012

GET INVOLVED CONTACT YOUR CONGRESSMAN

If you hadn’t noticed, companies, including AT&T, have slowly but surely been shifting retiree plan costs to retirees and/or the government. And, given what is not happening in Congress (protection of pension and healthcare benefits), it is likely to continue to get worse. In fact, it has. Just recently, the government indicated that If you hadn’t noticed, companies, including AT&T, have slowly but the Retire Healthcare Reinsurance Fund was out of money to support employer sponsored drug coverage. As a result, it was expected that companies would attempt to shift those prescription drug costs (promised retiree benefits) to either the retiree or the government, or both. In fact, some companies have already put some retirees on notice that they will be pushed to a Medicare D prescription plan. Likewise, we’ve seen many companies say that they can no longer afford to fund traditional pensions and have terminated the plans and have pushed the responsibility and liability onto the under funded PBGC, a government funded entity.

 In many cases, pensions taken over by the PBGC result in substantially less income for retirees because, according to the Ellen Shultz book, Retirement Heist, companies have either purposely under funded plans or misused the plan assets for other than stated purposes - all allowable under current pension laws. Many companies are just one poor decision away from failure, be it failed mergers or other bad business choices causing funds to be shifted away from retiree promised benefits.

You can help change this in the future and minimize our risks as retirees. How? You can contact your Representative and Senators in Congress and ask them to support the NRLN Legislative Agenda. That agenda proposes changes in the retiree healthcare and pension laws that require companies to do the right thing and meet improved guidelines. Specifically, one item in the agenda proposes a retire healthcare maintenance of cost payment proposal for retirees. It requires companies who can afford it to provide retirees with the amount of healthcare funding that they received when they retired when and if they eliminate the healthcare benefit. The agenda also proposes changes to the PBGC and bankruptcy rules making pensions safer should a company go into bankruptcy or be purchased by a foreign entity.

But, Congress has to act. And, they will act, just as Verizon acted when their customers took action after it proposed a $2.00 fee for paying a bill on line. Congress will act if retirees tell their Representative and Senators that they have had enough of their doing nothing on Capitol Hill. Congress will act if retirees are mobilized and respond to being charged more for their earned benefits and getting less in return. Congress will act when Representative and senators realize that by doing nothing, they are creating more of a government deficit as companies take advantage of poorly constructed laws on the books today. Profitable companies are being allowed to push retirees onto government provided Medicare D and the government’s liability for PBGC funding is increasing to make up pension shortfalls as some companies continue to under fund their plans and go bankrupt (e.g. AMR? KODAK?) Some members of AASBCR will be attending the upcoming NRLN meeting in Washington between January 30 and February 1, 2012.

AASBCR requests that you take the action of either writing or calling your Representative/Senators in Congress to tell them you are unhappy with the way companies are shortchanging the government and retirees. Tell your Representative/Senators that you want to send them a copy of the NRLN Agenda (proposals) and supporting White Papers.

Go to the AASBCR Website at http://www.aasbcr.org. Click on the NRLN link and follow the prompts at the bottom of the page to send an email. Let AASBCR know which Representative/Senator you wrote to or spoke with, their e-mail address or telephone number and that they want a copy of the NRLN Agenda. AASBCR will take care of the rest.

Again, only you as the votercan make Congress take action with your voice and your vote. This year will be pivotal for retirees. Congress will be looking to cut the budget. Let’s tell them “not on the backs of retirees!” Do it now, before there are no retiree benefits left to fight for.

NOW, I GAVE YOU THE NUMBERS OF YOUR CONGRESSMEN AND SENATORS. PHONE THEM NOW AND LET THEM KNOW HOW YOU FEEL. REMEMBER, IF THEY WANT TO STAY IN OFFICE, YOUR VOTE COUNTS.

All these ‘golden parachutes’ that the city, county, state and Federal government have been handing out, there is no way that our tax stature can support them in the style to which they have become accustomed!

Cinnamon and Honey – Nature’s Remidies

Honey is the only food on the planet that will not spoil or rot. What it will do is what some call 'turning to sugar'. In reality, honey is always honey. However, when left in a cool dark place for a long time it will "crystallize". When this happens, loosen the lid, boil some water and sit the honey container in the hot water, but turn off the heat and let it liquefy naturally. It is then as good as it ever was. Never boil honey or put it in a microwave. This will kill the enzymes in the honey.

It is found that a mixture of honey and cinnamon cures most diseases. Honey is produced in most of the countries of the world. Scientists of today also accept honey as a 'Ram Ban' (very effective) medicine for all kinds of diseases. Honey can be used without side effects for any kind of diseases.

Today's science says that even though honey is sweet, when it is taken in the right dosage as a medicine, it does not harm even diabetic patients. Weekly World News, a magazine in Canada, in its issue dated 17 January, 1995 has given the following list of diseases that can be cured by honey and cinnamon, as researched by western scientists:

HEART DISEASES:
Make a paste of honey and cinnamon powder, apply it on bread instead of jelly and jam and eat it regularly for breakfast. It reduces the cholesterol in the arteries and saves the patient from heart attack. Also, those who have already had an attack, when they do this process daily, they are kept miles away from the next attack. Regular use of the above process relieves loss of breath and strengthens the heartbeat. In America and Canada, various nursing homes have treated patients successfully and have found that as one ages the arteries and veins lose their flexibility and get clogged; honey and cinnamon revitalize the arteries and the veins.

ARTHRITIS:
Arthritis patients may take daily (morning and night) one cup of hot water with two tablespoons of honey and one small teaspoon of cinnamon powder. When taken regularly even chronic arthritis can be cured. In a recent research conducted at the Copenhagen University, it was found that when the doctors treated their patients with a mixture of one tablespoon Honey and half teaspoon Cinnamon powder before breakfast, they found that within a week (out of the 200 people so treated) practically 73 patients were totally relieved of pain — and within a month, most all the patients who could not walk or move around because of arthritis now started walking without pain.

BLADDER INFECTIONS:
Take two tablespoons of cinnamon powder and one teaspoon of honey in a glass of lukewarm water and drink it. It destroys the germs in the bladder.

CHOLESTEROL:
Two tablespoons of honey and three teaspoons of Cinnamon Powder mixed in 16 ounces of tea water given to a cholesterol patient was found to reduce the level of cholesterol in the blood by 10 percent within two hours. As mentioned for arthritic patients, when taken three times a day, any chronic cholesterol is cured. According to information received in the said Journal, pure honey taken with food daily relieves complaints of cholesterol.

COLDS:
Those suffering from common or severe colds should take one tablespoon lukewarm honey with 1/4 spoon cinnamon powder daily for three days. This process will cure most chronic cough, cold, and, clear the sinuses.

UPSET STOMACH:
Honey taken with cinnamon powder cures stomach ache and also clears stomach ulcers from its root.

GAS:
According to the studies done in India and Japan, it is revealed that when Honey is taken with cinnamon powder the stomach is relieved of gas.

IMMUNE SYSTEM:
Daily use of honey and cinnamon powder strengthens the immune system and protects the body from bacterial and viral attacks. Scientists have found that honey has various vitamins and iron in large amounts. Constant use of Honey strengthens the white blood corpuscles (where DNA is contained) to fight bacterial and viral diseases.

INDIGESTION:
Cinnamon powder sprinkled on two tablespoons of honey taken before food is eaten relieves acidity and digests the heaviest of meals.

INFLUENZA:
A scientist in Spain has proved that honey contains a natural ingredient, which kills the influenza germs and saves the patient from flu.

LONGEVITY:
Tea made with honey and cinnamon powder, when taken regularly, arrests the ravages of old age. Use four teaspoons of honey, one teaspoon of cinnamon powder, and three cups of water and boil to make a tea. Drink 1/4 cup, three to four times a day. It keeps the skin fresh and soft and arrests old age. Life spans increase and even a 100 year old will start performing the chores of a 20-year-old.

RASPY OR SORE THROAT:
When throat has a tickle or is raspy, take one tablespoon of honey and sip until gone. Repeat every three hours until throat is without symptoms.

SKIN INFECTIONS:
Applying honey and cinnamon powder in equal parts on the affected parts cures eczema, ringworm and all types of skin infections.

WEIGHT LOSS:
Daily in the morning one half hour before breakfast and on an empty stomach, and at night before sleeping, drink honey and cinnamon powder boiled in one cup of water. When taken regularly, it reduces the weight of even the most obese person. Also, drinking this mixture regularly does not allow the fat to accumulate in the body even though the person may eat a high calorie diet.

CANCER:
Recent research in Japan and Australia has revealed that advanced cancer of the stomach and bones have been cured successfully. Patients suffering from these kinds of cancer should daily take one tablespoon of honey with one teaspoon of cinnamon powder three times a day for one month.

FATIGUE:
Recent studies have shown that the sugar content of honey is more helpful rather than being detrimental to the strength of the body. Senior citizens who take honey and cinnamon powder in equal parts are more alert and flexible. Dr. Milton, who has done research, says that a half tablespoon of honey taken in a glass of water and sprinkled with cinnamon powder, even when the vitality of the body starts to decrease, when taken daily after brushing and in the afternoon at about 3:00 P.M., the vitality of the body increases within a week.

BAD BREATH:
People of South America, gargle with one teaspoon of honey and cinnamon powder mixed in hot water first thing in the morning so their breath stays fresh throughout the day.

Thanks to the Marshalls for sharing this with us.

DEATHS

AT&T has not furnished us with any deaths. These are the deaths that we know of at this time:

Hamming, Ken

Nov. 19, 2011

Bondy, Martha

Dec. 17, 2011

Gagnier, Glenn

Dec. 22, 2011

Birch, Thomas

Dec. 24, 2011

LeBelle, Patrick

Dec. 29, 2011

Huebel, Hope

Jan. 3, 2012

Newsletter Volunteers Wanted

As noted in the December Newsletter, I am quitting the newsletter as of December 2012. Does anyone want to take it over or part of it? The results of our survey is 1st, keep the Spring and Fall Luncheons, 2nd, Keep the Newsletter, and 3rd, is the Monthly Luncheons. If you haven’t voted yet, you had better cast your vote now! Just like any vote, don’t cry when it doesn’t go your way.

Call (586) 268-1613 or email at lizlorence@sbcglobal.net me with your vote.

FEBRUARY MONTHLY LUNCHEON

On the second Monday of the Month, Feb. 13th , you will find us at Archie's Fine Foods on Plymouth Road between Middlebelt and Merriman Roads at 11:30 a.m. in the Sun Room.

MARCH MONTHLY LUNCHEON

On March 12th, you will find us back at the Star Family Dining on John R. Road, just southwest of the Eleven Mile Road. I will see you in the back room at 11:30 a.m.

This information is solely advisory, and should not be substituted for legal, financial or tax advice. Any financial decisions and actions must be done through the advice and counsel of a qualified attorney, financial advisor, and/or CPA! This newsletter is intended for entertainment purposes only. Credit is given to the authors of various articles that are reprinted when the original author is known. Any omission of credit to an author is purely unintentional and should not be construed as plagiarism or literary theft. © Copyright 2012 Liz Lorence
© 2012 brpl.org