Email letters, August 11, 2011

Few reasons exist for ballots to be printed in Spanish

Reading the Aug. 10 edition of The Daily Sentinel, I came very upset reading that more counties in the state of Colorado have to print ballet in Spanish and English. To vote in Colorado, you have to be a citizen of the United States. To become a citizen you have to be born in the states or through naturalization and reading and writing the English language is part of this process. You are exempt from the English language requirement, but are still required to take the civics test if you are. The exemptions to having to write and speak English are:

—If the person is age 50 or older at time of filing for naturalization and have lived as a permanent resident (green card holder) in the United States for 20 years (commonly referred to as the 50/20 exception). 

—If the person is age 55 or older at the time of filing for naturalization and have lived as a permanent resident (green card holder) in the United States for 15 years (commonly referred to as the 55/15 exception).

—Third you may be eligible for an exception to the English and civics naturalization requirements if you are unable to comply with these requirements because of a physical of developmental disability or a mental impairment. To request this exception, submit Form N-648 Medical Certification for Disability Exceptions. This form must be completed by a licensed medical or osteopathic doctor, or licensed clinical psychologist.

It looks to me that our government is trying to get it so they can get votes from people that are in Colorado illegally. I find it hard to believe we have this many people living 15–20 years on a green card in the state of Colorado.

BOYD ARNOLD
Grand Junction

It’s time to take back our economy

Since President Obama, our U.S. Congress and the super committee will not do anything but talk and debate well into the 2012, Americans will have to take matters into their own hands. Since our economy is 90 percent service oriented, not much economic growth can take place. 

We have become a consuming society. We have hit a wall economically. There is no balance to our economy. We are not manufacturing very much here. This is my plan of action:

—End both wars in Iraq and Afghanistan immediately. The cost of lives and taxpayer money has gone too far. Let’s end the blank check to the Department of Defense. The Taliban will always be in Afghanistan now and when we leave. 

Plus, Americans seem to be doing most of the fighting and not the Afghans?  It is obvious that our military strategies and tactics no longer work there.  Let’s get out now and make sure that we take excellent care of these veterans when they come home.

—Next, pay off China. Let’s get rid this financial burden as quickly as possible.

—Impose a 25 percent import tax or more on Chinese goods and those made in Southeast Asia. Look at what we have to buy in our stores. Our clothes, shoes and thousands of household products come from China and overseas.  This will bring in revenue in the short-term.

—Cut off foreign aid to most countries around the world.  We have done enough.  If they need money, they can go to the World Bank.  This financial drain on American taxpayers must end now.

Create a new banking system that only loans to American businesses and manufacturing.  Penalize corporations that have factories and businesses overseas with a high percentage taxation.
A token cutting 2-4 trillion dollars over ten years will not do anything for our economy.  Our current government will blow that much money within a year or two.  During these drastic times, we need real leadership from our president and congress. 

Right now, I do not see anyone there that has the guts to stand up and do anything close to what I am suggesting.  Wall Street and the thousands of so-called economists that can’t get it right will complain that my plan is extreme protectionism.  Right now, American businesses and workers need alot of help and protection right now.
RANDY FRICKE
New Castle
Public needs more control over country’s economy

It’s interesting how the media chooses what to report.  Soon after Standard &Poor’s downgrade recently, CNN reported S&P did make a $2 trillion error but still initiated the downgrade.  Don Chambers of S&P also said, “If the Bush tax cuts had been allowed to expire in December, this would not have happened.”

Neil Cavuto interviewed Chambers but Chambers seemed reluctant to argue with him.  Chambers only reiterated the Congressional gridlock as the cause.  Oddly, after the Chambers interview, Cavuto spoke with Dennis Kucinich who reported that Exxon-Mobile paid no taxes last year and received $154 million in tax subsidies.  Kucinich asked where when Cavuto tried to say
Exxon-Mobile had paid taxes.  Cavuto said, “Well, the workers paid.”

Maybe it’s time the public takes over.  Polls say overwhelmingly the public wants tax hikes on the rich.  A majority also want a compromise similar to the Simpson-Bowles proposal.  We’re so great with charitable donations maybe we should start a March of Dimes and Dollars for America — send whatever we can to the Department of Revenue like our parents did in the 1940s.

During World War II virtually every citizen in one way or another was employed by the government.  Rosie the Riveters received more pay than depression wages even with part of it being paid in war bonds.  We had no money to wage a war, so with 2.9 percent return in ten years, by the end of 1946 people purchased over $185 billion in bonds.  When cashed in these bonds bought houses and started businesses.

Every declared war in our history included war tax increases except the War on Terror.  We were instead encouraged to enjoy ourselves and buy $6,000 shower curtains while our soldiers died.

EILEEN O’TOOLE
Grand Junction

Spending is the only way to help the economy

What a strange and unhinged time we live in. The voices for unlimited deregulation are still strong after the savings-and-loan disaster followed by the mortgage-and-housing financial debacle that may yet bring our economy further crashing down. Both were the result of deregulation plus laxity on the part of regulators. We’ve made great strides in cleaning up the environment and cutting down on industrial accidents, yet the voices remain for deregulation and have the audacity to say that regulations are somehow complicit in our current faltering economy.
Now there are voices claiming that somehow our deficits and debt are critical and are connected to our sour economy. In our current stagnant economy that is absolutely untrue. Under vastly different economic conditions that could be a contributor, but not now. Cutting back on spending right now is a recipe for further disaster. It will take money out of circulation and add to the ranks of the jobless.
It is astounding that after World War II by far the largest part of our debt was run up by Republican presidents, the largest part by George W. Bush. Now Republicans are foaming at the mouth because of the debt run up under Obama. Most of that debt has been due to automatic safety net programs such as unemployment support and the too-small stimulus. For those trying to pin the whole thing on Obama I would ask, where would we be without that money circulating in the economy? The easy and obvious answer is the Second Great Depression.
No, the voices are clear for those who choose to listen closely. Our current troubles are purely manufactured by those whose only objective is to bring Obama down, led by Mitch McConnell who very candidly admits it. The good of the country is not involved. Those who proved they couldn’t run the country want back in.

JOHN BORGEN
Grand Junction

Congress needs to quit thinking in terms of black and white

How ironic the congressional super-committee designed to help put us on the road to fiscal salvation was chosen while virtually everyone in Washington is out of town on vacation.

Unfortunately, the committee’s chances of success are slim at best, if for no other reason that fully half the committee members are signatories of Grover Norquist’s infamous pledge to oppose all forms of revenue enhancement via taxation, without which the fiscal math to get us out of the mess we find ourselves in simply doesn’t work.

Lurking in the background of our current malaise is the black-and-white pattern of thinking which currently infects large segments of American society, mainly via the fevered fringes of the blogosphere and which many psychologists consider a form of mental illness.

William Falk, writing in The Week magazine, sums it up this way, “But let us not blame blogs or the Internet for the proliferation of extremism ... Let us blame black-and-white thinking itself, and the people who indulge in it. To live in a world devoid of doubt and ambiguity is seductive, and deeply satisfying, but it’s crazy, and inevitably leads to crazy results. If people who think differently from you aren’t merely different, but evil, then you mustn’t bargain with them, or even tolerate them. You must destroy them.”

Somehow, I don’t think this is what the Founding Fathers had in mind for us.

E. MICHAEL ERVIN
Grand Junction



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