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Walmart's Taxpayer Supported Practices Means Subtraction of 100,000 Teacher Jobs

Original post made by Demoralized Educator on Apr 15, 2014

When the facts show that over 6 billion $$$ of taxpayer money goes toward keeping Walmart and its labor practices in business, it's fun to think about the folks who get all bent out of shape on account of public school teacher salaries/pensions.

The choice is obvious. Just what do we want? More better paid teachers? Or more impoverished Walmart workers needing food stamps as a survival need for themselves and their families? I mean, truly, just how dear to our hearts do we hold the pennies saved in exchange for stale vegetables and shortages of cashiers at the registers? Hint: given that your tax dollars go towards supporting Walmart, the pennies you think you are saving are not really savings at all.

(To Town Forum editors: If you decide to censor this, please give your readers your rationale, beyond that your right-wing politics renders you uncomfortable when you see any critical commentary directed toward corporations and their practices.)

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Comments (25)

Posted by ll, a resident of Birdland
on Apr 15, 2014 at 2:27 pm

Much more than $6 billion $$$ goes to public employee pensions and other post-employment benefits where the public employee does not pay a cent into the plan and the taxpayers pay for all of it. I suggest we fix this problem first since it is controlled by the government. If we did not have all this cost for pensions, think of all the money that would be available for education.

Posted by Demoralize Educator, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 15, 2014 at 4:38 pm

Wow, good thinking II. Truth is, public teachers shouldn't have to put one penny into their pensions and benefits, as these are part of their (deferred) salaries. There is no problem, here, beyond the deluded fantasy of haters who probably have an axe to grind against their former teachers.

Walmart employees are not being compensated fairly by their employers who engage in cheapskate behavior and amass billions for the Walmart/Walton family at taxpayer expense. This is a real problem that involves matters of poverty, justice, workers' rights (not a pseudo problem of the kind you raise). This is pretty easily corrected: raise the minimum wage, for starters; and raise it even higher for those in the employ of huge bloodsucking corporations like Walmart.

Now, go back to bellyaching about your fantasized "problem" of teacher compensation.

Posted by Sean O'Malley, a resident of Del Prado
on Apr 15, 2014 at 6:28 pm

Yes, let's follow II's lead, who wants us to take away from educators so we have more money for educators. It boggles the mind that someone can look at what negative effects companies like Wally World bring about for all of us, and then go on to criticize teacher salaries. Such is the state of the Republican Party these days.

Posted by ll, a resident of Birdland
on Apr 15, 2014 at 8:23 pm

Calm down. I never said teacher pensions. I said public employee pensions and post retirement benefits. The teachers have a reasonable pension plan, which they pay into, while the other state and local public employees have a huge pensions plan that many employees do not contribute a dime to, along with retiree medical. Every dollar we pay for a public employee pension, where the employee pays nothing, or for retiree medical, where the employee pays nothing, is a dollar taken away from the schools and the teachers.

Posted by Demoralized Teacher, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 15, 2014 at 9:48 pm

Again, II, you're mistaken. You see, pensions and med benefits are an extension of one's salary. There is absolutely no reason why public workers should pay a nickel toward their own their salaries (beyond the taxes they pay) -- salaries which are largely a product of a fair collective bargaining process. You seem fixed on public workers. You should have tried to become one yourself. Or perhaps you did, and failed. Rough rocks, buddy.

At the same time you seem unbothered by Walmart's exploitative practices that unfairly compensate their workers and that place the onus for supporting impoverished Walmart workers' families with food stamps upon tax payers.

I'm no psychologist, but even a rudimentary general intelligence can deduce with validity that you have an axe to grind with workers who you think make too much, and you're fine with workers whose families remain mired in poverty. I think this is a pretty clear indicator that you've got some serious issues. Instead of projecting your hatred toward justly compensated state workers, maybe you should seek to find the real source of your problem. Or, in other words, the problem you have with state workers isn't their problem, and nor is it ours. It is your problem. You've got a problem. Seriously, Dude, you should think about dealing with it.

Posted by jimf01, a resident of another community
on Apr 15, 2014 at 10:39 pm

jimf01 is a registered user.

Let me guess: "Demoralized Teacher" and "Demoralized Educator" are the same person? I believe this individual, whom we could simply call "demoralized California progressive", lives here in the state that taxes it's citizens with the highest income tax rates, highest gasoline tax and highest sales tax rates, yet sees some of the worst outcomes in K-12 education of the 50 states. Of course, there are states that tax more than California, but the demoralized leftist probably doesn't want to bring up a New York public school education, or maybe DC or Illinois either.
Stunningly, there are states that pay teachers less money and educate kids better. They do more with less. The level of funding of education isn't the issue, and Walmart is nothing but a convenient scapegoat for your average progressive, outside of the fact that the figure of "6 billion $$$ of taxpayer money" is simply a phony figure. The failures of public education in high taxation states like California and New York show us that a better education for our kids is a much more complex problem than underpaid teachers.

Oh, but do take note: our "demoralized" OP doesn't actually raise the educational outcomes as an issue, the only concern that is that he or she is underpaid and overworked, and that Walmart has the audacity to earn a profit.

Posted by Demoralized Educator/Teacher, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 15, 2014 at 11:27 pm

Well, you've finally stated something correctly, JimFol. DE and DT are the same person, with the slight change in name being an unintended error on my part. Now, will you admit to being II? Nope, you just can't find such honesty in yourself can you?

All else you offer is wrong, very wrong.

Your claims about taxpayer investments into education are ridiculous. Fact is, places -- 'states' (I'd call them hick holes) -- like Wyoming and N. Dakota do not do a better job of educating their kids. If they did, if they truly did, families who care about their children would be flocking to those hick holes. But families are not, because there is no comparison between quality of California education v. Wyoming, Mississipp, Alabam, or any of the other backwater states you hold in such high esteem.

Walmart workers work hard and yet receive wages that leave them in poverty. This affects them and their children. But because of the issue that I raised when you were calling yourself II, you can only express disdain. And of course you remain mum about the hundreds of billions in tax dollars spent to keep the kids fed. Admit it, you LIKE the idea that there are people around you who are impoverished, whose kids are going to bed hungry. Again, your take on this is a problem you need to deal with.

When you can actually write about 'earning a profit' with workers being paid a wage that keeps their kids hungry at bedtime while Waltons sit on hundred of billions in profit, you only rearticulate your inability to think about human beings outside the confines of your own closeted and very lonely zone of hatred of self and others. Get well soon.

Posted by jimf01, a resident of another community
on Apr 16, 2014 at 8:32 am

jimf01 is a registered user.

The so-called "educator" does illuminate one thing for us with this reply. In typical progressive fashion, an accusation of deceit must be leveled, so the easiest one is to accuse me of using two screen names. When the fact is that I log in and use my name (see where it says "jimf01 is a registered user"?) to comment here, and own up to my opinions. I do not hide behind multiple screen names, but I believe this one "educator" is now up to at least three that he or she has admitted to.
An "educator", I would expect this type of pablum from. Educators are usually the elitists, the office workers of education who can not see the forest for the trees. The elitism is on full display here, from someone who works in a California school district and terms all of middle America a "hick hole" (whatever that is).
Full of spit and venom, these far left elitists sit at their keyboards, expressing hatred for almost everything that makes America great. And these are the folks who are the 'deciders' when it comes to the curricula taught in our schools. One can understand the outcomes we see here in California schools with these types in control.
See, a real teacher doesn't refer to him or herself as an "educator". The teachers, the ones who are there every day doing the job with the kids are able to see the failures of the system that this "educator" is in complete denial over.
If and when an "educator" wants to stop scapegoating Walmart, admit to structural problems with the schools, and come up with constructive comments or suggestions, instead of destructive insults and useless rhetoric, I would be glad to engage.

Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore
on Apr 16, 2014 at 8:45 am

President GWB states "I'm the decider"!

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Posted by Demoralized Educator, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 16, 2014 at 9:32 am

After all kinds of chest thumbing denial, deflection, and dissembling, Jimfo1 wants us to believe that a system that leaves millions of Walmart workers and their families below the poverty line, with the kids going to bed hungry at night, is 'what makes America great'. And those billions upon billions that Walmart's Walton family sit upon? No structural problem there. Nope. Just part of what makes America great. Again, we cannot escape the deduction that Jim likes the idea of impoverished kids. The deduction itself is inescapable. From whence his view emerges? Well, that's beyond my pay grade: because most are people of color (probably); because many are recent immigrants (probably); that he has developed a hatred for them because his tax dollars go toward their education (yes, probably this too, consistent with his constant references to how Cal public schools need to do more with less tax revenue). What a guy!

And then he claims the figures regarding Walmart workers' dependence on food stamps and taxpayer subsidization for Walmart workers are "phony." I wonder, did he read the link that was provided? Does he make any effort to explain why he finds them "phony?" How locked behind one's own trap-door mind must one be to deny poverty in the United States?

And of the structural problems he refers to in education? He doesn't note them. But we know Jimfol and his other aliases well enough to know: he's against the "structural problem" of teacher unions who have negotiated wages for Cal's teachers higher than those in backwater Alabam and Keentuck -- you know, the dumb, uneducated red states.

So, what is Jim boy's modus operandi? Call results of scientific studies phony. Look at the overwhelming levels of poverty in America and tell us how great this country is. Look on approvingly as Walmart's Walton family amasses hundreds of billions, and does so at the expense of Walmart workers and the American taxpayers who pay for their food stamps. Deny the structural problems of America's capitalist enterprise, and instead lament structural problems in Cal's schools -- viz., that Cal's public school teachers get paid too much. Oh, yes, and there's his amusing quip about educators as 'elitists'. Sorry, Jim, that your own educational experiences were so bad as to leave you with such a pathetically warped view of things. Then again, I guess if I were in your position, with the views you hold, I'd be looking at public school secretaries as elitists too. Well, back to the woodshed where you can begin re-sewing your 'Don't tread on me' flag in anticipation of the next Tea Party hot dog fest.

Posted by jimf01, a resident of another community
on Apr 16, 2014 at 10:00 am

jimf01 is a registered user.

There we go. Let it all out. Racist, xenophobic, oops forgot sexist and bigoted?
Ignorant educator brings up "overwhelming levels of poverty in America", ignoring that California owns the highest poverty rate of the 50 states. But your schools have no structural issues you can think of.
Lying educator brings up "scientific studies", but fails to cite even one of them.
Here is the real revealing statement, "the structural problems of America's capitalist enterprise", and this same writer says we have a "structural problem" when a citizen starts a business, builds it in to a multi-billion dollar enterprise, and employs thousands of people. That's a structural problem. But California's highest income taxes, gas taxes, and sales taxes in the country, and schools performing in the bottom 1/3 of the 50 states? That is not a problem. Just throw more money at it, by, um, I don't know, making profits illegal? That would be a good start.

Posted by Demoralized Educator, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 16, 2014 at 10:46 am

Web Link

In mentioning your traits, you forgot ignorant, Jimfol. Because only an ignoramus like yourself could seek to justify/ignore how Walmart's labor practices leave the Walmart family with profits -- pure profits, of over $7 billion per year -- and leave the American taxpayers with a bill of $6 billion.

Let's do the math: If Walmart's Walton family agreed to do the right thing for its workers and their children, and tossed $6 billion into wages and salaries, THEY'D STILL BE MAKING A BILLION PER YEAR! But for guys like Jimf0l who like to imagine they're one of the Waltons (for being very, very alone in one's closeted thoughts can do this to people), one billion per year in profits just isn't enough. Let the kids go to bed hungry, because one billion isn't enough. Nope. He looks at the one billion and all he can think of about is how tyrannical any restrictions on exploited wealth must be.

So, suffer little children. You deserve to suffer. Because the Walton family deserves it's hundreds of billions in expropriated wealth. Their workers had nothing to do with it. Really. Because, see, they were justly compensated with a wage that may have left their kids hungry at night, but that's what makes America great.

So, the majority of Walmart's 1.4 million workers are eligible for and/or drawing upon food stamp assistance for their children, at US taxpayer expense to the tune of $6 billion, while Walton family sits upon hundreds of billions in accumulated profit. Nothing structurally problematic with this at all, says Jimf0l. See, he's fine with this. He's more concerned with Cal's public school system -- wants it functioning more like Wyoming's or Mississipp's school systems. Right. Get those hot dogs a boilin' on the stove, Ethyl.

Posted by jimf01, a resident of another community
on Apr 16, 2014 at 11:17 am

jimf01 is a registered user.

Still waiting for a scientific study, this is a Democratic (coulda guessed) Committee Staff Report, no chance they slanted any facts on that. An "educator" might know what a scientific study is, by definition, and know this isn't one. This study took anecdotal data from one study of one Wal-Mart in one state (Wisconsin), and extrapolated and outright guessed to reach the $6 billion number.
The "Democratic staff of the U.S. House Committee on Education and the Workforce" further faults Wal-Mart for taking the same IRS deductions that every other corporation is allowed in order to save $1 billion on taxes, GASP! They took legal deductions! Outrageous, isn't it.
No, I will proudly defend the Walton's and their billions. They earned their money, something a lot of educators don't do, obviously, given the outcomes we see in some school systems in our country.
No, I am calling BS. This writer is not even an educator, I am now willing to wager., we will just call this person DE, short for delirious extremist.

Posted by ll, a resident of Birdland
on Apr 16, 2014 at 12:02 pm

To the "demoralized" person who thinks they are entitled to our money,

The pension problem in California because an issue starting in 1999 when the liars at CalPERS (who had much to gain from rising pensions) convinced lawmakers that they could significantly increase the pension formula, do this retroactively, and it would not cost the taxpayers anything.

The taxpayers have been defrauded by this.

And now that it has been determined that this was a fraudulent statement, the unions say "finders keepers, looser weepers". It would be one thing to say that the vested time in this outrageous pension package is what it is, but to say that what goes up cannot come done and it is illegal to fix this broken problem for future vesting, is why the public rightfully so has determined that the public unions are at war with the taxpayers.

The biggest problem with the pension system is the employees have zero risk while the taxpayers have all the risk. There is no incentive for the employees to play fair. The unions can pay off the CalPERS decision makers and then the unions win, forever.

Posted by Demoralized Educator, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 16, 2014 at 12:12 pm

Ah, yes, Jimfol says: "I will proudly defend the Waltons and their billions." He then goes on to exalt these heirs of Sam Walton, one and all, because they "earned their money" unlike so many educators who Jimfol believes don't earn theirs. Yep, and then he calls me a "delirious extremist."

This study, like many if not most social science studies, take sample sizes and then generalize from specific results. This study openly reveals its methodology; indeed, given that Walmart pays its employees in other states less than in Wisconsin, it is valid to conclude that the estimate of taxpayers subsidizing Walmart to the tune of $6 billion is a conservative one.

But no matter to Jimfol. Because he LIKES the idea that it is legal for the Walton heirs to grab $7 billion in annual profits off the backs of their workers while the workers' wages leave them and their families below the poverty line. And what about American taxpayers having to subsidize Walmart workers because Walmart won't pay them a living wage? All fine and dandy, says Jimf0l. See, Sam Walton's heirs deserve all this because, heck, inheriting all those billions is hard work. Much harder than the kinds of work educators do. Aw, but I am digressing into what Jimfo calls delirious extremism.

It's pretty clear that Jimbol likes knowing that tens of millions of impoverished kids go to bed hungry every night. This fact, presented scientifically as well as anecdotally, is simply an expression of Jimfo's America and its greatness.

But let's move away from psychology and people's psychological problems.... Now, Jimbo's real concern is public schools. What he calls 'structural problems'. He hasn't identified any here for us. Since he's on this forum, we'd hope that he could tell us how -- since, unjust wages, unjust profits, and kids living in poverty aren't viewed as problems -- the real problem rather is structural in schools, as he claims.

Let's give Jimf0 an opportunity to educate all of us. Jimf0, if you can put down that hot dog for a moment: Can you tell us what Pleasanton's public school kids are not learning at school? Here's a chance to be specific. You know, are there types of reading, or domains of math, or the finer aspects of calf roping, that aren't taught to kids in Pleasanton, California but are in Wyoming? Please tell us what they are. We're eager to learn from you.

Posted by taxpayer, a resident of Downtown
on Apr 16, 2014 at 12:27 pm

Forcing Walmart to pay whatever amount DE comes up with would not put one dollar into the pot for teachers or pensions or anything else. The free market does not work that way. If you think Walmart is unfair, don't shop there. Ask those who work there how they would feel if you managed to close every Walmart in the country and put them out of work. Stupid result from stupid thinking.

About those pensions. You are so off base as to be ridiculous. 3% at 50 is not sustainable at any level not matter what. Public employees who pay little, if anything, into their pensions can retire at age 50 with 90% of their highest pay -- for life. Well almost, because what really happens is that they get raises to that amount every year. So after about, hmmm, a year these 51 year olds are making more money in retirement than when they worked. Of course many are then working in non-PERS jobs as there is no reduction of retirement benefits based on current earnings. Even worse, many of them take their pensions to states with no tax on pensions and the great state of California (that's you and me you moron) continues to pay their pensions but collects not one dime of tax on those pensions. Yeah, pensions should be funded entirely by the employers (again, that's you and me you moron) and then should allow retirement at age 50 with full pay for the rest of their lives, many times not taxed at all.

But DE has a fix for all that. Force Walmart to pay their employees more. Pretty sure DE will be sitting up waiting for the Easter bunny to show this weekend too. I sure hope that DE does not teach math or science. Basket weaving or aligning auras maybe.

Posted by Demoralized Teacher, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 16, 2014 at 1:56 pm

Oh, now jimfol changes his name in order to avoid the very easy and straightforward educative task we've given him. Perhaps jimfol/II/taxpayer will simply tell us what Wyoming school kids are learning that Pleasanton school kids aren't.

Yeah, taxpayer, you're fine with Walmart making and keeping $7 billion per year while you, the sucker taxpayer, pays for food stamps for the families of Walmart workers.

taxpayer appears unable to grasp that kids having adequate food and nutrition contributes to higher educational outcome; those same kids having parents who aren't as stressed will have a better home life, conducive to better learning. But, no, taxpayer wants the children to suffer so that Walmart heirs can keep their billions and billions. We've passed the point where this is a logical discussion. No, it is now about what kind of psychological malady would lend itself to such a warped view of the world. You know, a world where Walmart heirs deserve billions because they've worked harder than public school teachers; and where millions of kids deserve to go to sleep hungry because each Walmart heir possessing $40+ billion is what makes America great. No longer an argument, this is simply an exercise in psychological illness.

I've tried to move the discussion to higher plane. Again, what are the schools doing in Wyoming that make it a better educational milieu than Pleasanton. Still waiting....

As to taxpayer's rant. I'd much rather my tax money goes to teachers who have fairly negotiated for their salaries than to Walmart heirs who have done nothing except sit on their piles of billions while throwing off body heat

C'mon Jimboy, we're all waiting to hear about the great Wyoming, North Dakota and Mississipp educational systems. You know, why Pleasanton parents are getting the shaft by not living in Mississipp.

Posted by jimf01, a resident of another community
on Apr 16, 2014 at 2:04 pm

jimf01 is a registered user.

No longer an argument, this is simply an exercise in psychological illness.

I've tried to move the discussion to higher plane

In. Consecutive. Sentences.


No longer worth addressing a delirious extremist. You're in utter denial.

If you can name one, yes just one structural issue in the school system in CA, I will respond.

Posted by taxpayer, a resident of Downtown
on Apr 16, 2014 at 2:13 pm

DE, DT, whatever you call yourself. You just don't have a clue. The profit that Walmart makes has not one single thing to with your pay or pension.

Your rant about Walmart is only a rant, no reasonable suggestions (make them pay their workers more?, really?), nothing at all to do with reality.

If you really think that you, or anyone else, has the power to force Walmart to pay more and have less profit for the owners then you are even dumber than you first appeared to be. How about this then. We are having a terrible drought and really need rain. Would forcing Walmart to raise pay for their employees make it rain? Makes as much sense as the rest of your rant.

Posted by Demoralized Educator, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 16, 2014 at 3:26 pm

taxpayer, obviously you've overtaxed yourself. Trying to compare workers' labor struggles and successes (e.g., higher minimum wage) to wishing for rain is beyond comment. Tuck yourself in and try to get some sleep. For tomorrow, you never know, someone might expect you to tie your own shoe.

Jimfol, who entered the conversation ballyhooing all the structural problems with education in Cali, and who claims that most states have better educational systems than does Cali, now shifts the burden onto me. He wants ME to name a structural problem. In other words, he's admitting he can't. Oh, he'll call himself taxpayer or II and stomp his feet up and down about teacher salaries and pensions, but structural issues that pertain to quality of children's education? Nada.

Fact is, only a right-wing lunatic would encourage a Pleasanton parent to take their kids out of school here and move them into some backwater state school system. And, yes, by backwater state I mean the red states that typically vote Republican. Bad schools; dumb neighbors; terrible places to have your child educated. C'mon Jimbo, since you say California is obviously an inferior educational system to that of Wyoming's, tell us how Wyoming kids are better educated than kids in Pleasanton. Steer riding? Hitching up a country wagon? Geese calling? Keeping 'Inherit the Wind' out of the school library? C'mon, giddy-up, you raised the issue. Let's hear it.

Jimboy knows absolutely nothing about quality education. To learn about quality education, he'd have to care about kids. But he doesn't. He claims millions of kids going to bed at night hungry is part of America's greatness. No, all he's good for is putting on pouty little fits because he doesn't want his wife to pay taxes to support public education.

Posted by Right, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 16, 2014 at 6:00 pm

Demented teacher lays the foundation for her tirade based solely on a dailykostic blog.....that alone negates anything you screamed about afterwards. Your angry rant has me concerned that you might appear in a classroom with impressionable children any time in the future. Such irrational bombast is unfortunately becoming more and more typical of leftist union mouthpieces. Your union rep has indoctrinated you sufficiently, so you can go out and solicit dues from ignorant drones.
I'm glad the Weekly didn't remove your posts...they are very illuminating and should serve as a warning to all considering the mindset of unionistas.

Posted by ll, a resident of Birdland
on Apr 16, 2014 at 6:08 pm

Good point. If this person is in our classrooms teaching our children, he/she should be removed. Would be good if he/she learned critical thinking and how to have an intellectual conversation. I certainly hope this person is just an angry union troll and not a member of our education system.

Posted by Demoralized Educator, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 16, 2014 at 6:24 pm

Nice try! Can't refute her, so we'll complain about her teaching our kids. Better yet, why don't you move to Wyoming? Truth be told, neither II nor Right has anything of substance to add to the conversation. Unable to refute any of my arguments, they resort to name-calling, nothing more.

Now, you 'two', how about again donning your Jimbol hat and try to tell us how kids in Wyoming are receiving a better education than kids in Pleasanton. Giddy-up cowpokes!

Don't get me wrong, I've no qualms about name-calling. But I do think one should have something of substance to offer along with one's rhetorical flourishes. To simply call names is just all so much cowardice. If you had any guts, you'd attempt to back up the ridiculous claims I've already thoroughly refuted. Taking on yet another name or two only underscores what a ridiculous frump you are.

Now, back to Wyoming? Didn't think so.

Posted by liberalism is a disease, a resident of Birdland
on Apr 17, 2014 at 8:48 am

liberalism is a disease is a registered user.

Speaking of yourself in the 3rd person only makes you appear to be even more demented.
WalMart is here to stay. The grocery store they opened last year in Pleasanton is doing very well, thank you. The world didn't end and 100000 teachers did not suddenly exit the gravy train.
Your tiresome rants, while morbidly entertaining (like watching a car wreck) only amount to whizzing in the wind. Maybe you and your union buddies can open your own chain of grocery stores to compete with WalMart. Pay your high school educated, but unskilled, union workers $50 an hour, with full benefits and a pension at 200% of their base earnings. Then, pass the cost on to consumers, as is inevitable in any union run business. See how long you 'compete' with WalMart.
I'll drive by the Employment Development office and look for you. Word is there's really low unemployment figures in Wyoming.

Posted by jimf01, a resident of another community
on Apr 17, 2014 at 10:31 am

jimf01 is a registered user.

Aww the anon troll ran out of time. Too bad, you will have to register to keep this stimulating conversation going. But I know you feel that really, "to simply call names is just all so much cowardice" so your anonymous trolling days are through?

Buh bye.

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