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Home arrow Opinion arrow Letters to the editor for July 15, 2009

Letters to the editor for July 15, 2009

Freedoms not free

To the editor:

We are a country of immigrants, and should continue to extend ourselves to others as long as we are able. However, we should never reward those who break the law, whether they be those who enter our country illegally, or employers who knowingly hire them.

When we talk of national security, the estimated 20 million illegal aliens is frightening. I’m now wondering if our government really cares. Where is the fence that was signed into law in 2006?

When we talk about our Social Security, my most recent statement indicated that in 2017 we will begin paying more in benefits than we collect in taxes, and without changes, by 2041, the Social Security Trust Fund will be exhausted.

Again, I’m wondering if our government really cares. In spite of those sobering statistics, I’ve heard that we are again considering rewarding those who break the law, by a plan to award Social Security earnings credits for work done illegally in the U.S.

I have always felt that we live in the greatest country in the world, and am proud to be an American, but keep in mind that our freedoms were not free.

Scott Richards
Long Barn

Progressive taxation
 To the editor:

Our nation, over the past 30 years, followed the Republicans down a path which allowed corporations to consolidate power to control the marketplace. They enriched themselves massively as a consequence. And, when these monster-sized corporations began to show signs of collapse, we had really no choice but to prevent their complete failure with massive public investments lest we see our entire economy go down with these diseased corporate behemoths.

Today Goldman Sachs, one of the rescued financial institutions, announced that it will hand out $18 billion in employee bonuses, averaging $600,000 per employee. This is not behavior unique to Goldman Sachs. This is standard operating procedure for the corporate big boys. And this kind of obscene corporate greed has been robbing the rest of us far more than the government has with its taxation.

In fact the only way, and the most morally and appropriate way for the rest of us to repair this country and its economy is for us to return to the kind of progressive taxation that was in effect under Eisenhauer and Kennedy. In other words, it’s time to raise taxes on the rich — a lot. Remember that when these people find themselves in control of lots of money they take a lot for themselves. That’s a lot more like stealing than earning.

We do indeed need to take most of it back from them in the form of very high tax rates for earnings in excess of ... oh, I don’t know, maybe what we pay our president. Let your legislators know that we need to tax the heck out of the filthy rich.

Bob Wetzel

Forest management
 To the editor:

The June 9 letter “Stewards of the forests” (Gilbert Fryer) speaks of God’s request of man to be stewards of his creation, but represents the antithesis of what most Christians mean by “Creation Care.”

The errors of fact in the author’s diatribe against “environmental groups” which “continue to litigate and stall sales and harvests” require a response. During the past decade, not a single environmental group has litigated against any timber sale or attempted to block any fuel reduction project on the Stanislaus National Forest.

In response to the rant against environmental regulations, readers should know that Sierra Pacific Industries (SPI) is presently logging thousands of acres in the Sierra Nevada by clear-cutting. Clear-cutting is about as far from Creation Care as one can imagine. What form regulation should take is open to legitimate debate, but the need for some government regulation to curb destructive practices is undeniable.

The letter’s claim that “environmental groups and government regulations ... are attempting to destroy the health of our resources” insults readers’ intelligence. Private industry has its profit motive, but what conceivable motivation to destroy “our forests and our lands” could possibly drive citizen groups or democratically-elected government?

Forest management is complex and site specific, and reasonable persons can honorably disagree on the details. But responsible care for God’s creation is not furthered by demonizing those with whom one differs.

Rob Schaeffer, M.D.

Go Sarah!

To the editor:

This is a day to celebrate! Learning that Sarah Palin quit her day-job is the best news — ever! I know she is feeling our pain, and she can and will do something about it. She hasn’t announced it yet, but she will run for President in 2012.

I can feel it. I voted for “hope and change” in the last election, but I didn’t expect the kind of change we are now getting. I don’t want to live under socialism or communism. I finally woke up, changed the channel and began listening to real news and getting real facts, and I am truly disturbed at what is happening to our great nation.

Please people, you need to wake up also, before it is too late. Go Sarah!

Lyndi Anderson

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