Union Democrat staff

'Ideologically extreme' GOP

To the Editor:

In "It's Even Worse Than It Looks" authors Thomas Mann and Norman Ornstein charge that Republicans have become ideologically extreme, "scornful of compromise; unpersuaded by conventional understanding of facts, evidence and science; and dismissive of the legitimacy of its political opposition."

The government shutdown has validated these charges. And within the GOP stands an even more extreme group - the Tea Partiers whose aim seems to be the destruction of the presidency of Barack Obama. Our congressman, Tom McClintock is a member of the California Tea Party Caucus. Before his election in 2012 in his new district he didn't bother to inform the voters of his positions. Since then he has made plain his contempt for the National Park Service and Forest Service. It is ironic that he complains about "extremist environmentalists" when in fact he is the one who is an extremist. Let us not forget that the Affordable Healthcare Act has Republican origins and is modeled after then Massachusetts Governor Romney's healthcare plan for his state. The tea party led Republicans are the ones responsible for the government shutdown, a shocking and unethical abuse of their power, driven by their hatred of our President, a decent and law-abiding man.

Daniel Connell


The most powerful man in the world

To the Editor:

Who's the most powerful man in the world right now? No, not President Obama or any Asian or European leader. That person would be John Boehner who presides over the House of Representatives. He holds the power to call for an open vote of the entire House, on funding the government, which if done, would end the federal shutdown which has adversely affected millions of Americans. Polling of Republicans in the House has found enough votes along with the Democrats to pass a bill, since the Senate has the votes to pass it already.

Why won't he allow it? He fears, selfishly, for his speakership position if he should cross the minority of Tea Party advocates who actually believe that a government shutdown and refusal to raise the debt limit is good for the country! So here is a minority faction of both parties, mostly Republicans, who are giddy at the power they hold over Boehner. The speaker in trying to please the lunatic fringe in the asylum called the House of Representatives, has placed himself in the hall of shame. A patriotic American would take the slings and arrows that may come his way through public service, yet do what is right for the country regardless of personal ambitions. And we are approaching the eleventh hour with no resolution on the debt ceiling. Is it enough to bring tears to John Boehner's eyes?

Wayne Kirkbride

Twain Harte

Halloween monsters 2013: Tea Partiers

To the Editor:

Halloween is here again and we will see the scariest costumes and the cutest too. Little princesses, Tinker Bell's, Frankenstein's, spooks and goblins. But, this year there is a real scary creature out there straight out of the movie "Invasion of the Body Snatchers." Straight out of pods they walk out among us today. Can't tell them from normal people. So this year we must be ever careful of this scary costume. Their costume is a "Tea Party Congressman or Woman." Created from pods by the Koch brothers and their likes. They want their sweet treats like ACA, Social Security, Medicare, food stamps, Meals on Wheels, veterans benefits, tax cuts for their rich friends etc. and when they don't get their way they return to do their tricks like shutting down our government regardless of the consequences to the American people.

So, beware my friends and neighbors. As we are all not "suckers!"

Jim Hassay