E-mail letters, Sept. 30, 2010

History shows Americans
have been willing to pay

A tidbit on the History Channel told how President Washington signed the first federal tax to pay for the Revolutionary War.  The tax on liquor sparked the Whiskey Rebellion and Washington promptly put it down with federal troops.  We were a country for five minutes and ready to rip up the entire idea for a cheap drink and no taxes.
The Great Depression lasted 11 years with near 20 percent unemployment.  Government jobs built dams, improved national parks and government buildings, mostly with private contractors. A few private-sector jobs paid “depression wages.”

City dwellers lacked meat. Bread lines were long. Deficits grew. In 1920 federal taxes amounted to $6.6 billion. In 1932, the government received $1.9 billion.

As World War II erupted, President Roosevelt took over the auto companies and other factories. Government paid part in wages and part with War Bonds that promised only a future benefit. After WWII, the deficit-to-GDP ratio was twice what it is now but it didn’t deter pouring more taxes into the G.I. Bill, the Marshall Plan, interstate highways, airports and infrastructure, and, yes, they mortgaged their children’s lives. The richest suffered a 90 percent tax rate, (now at 35 percent).  That tax investment enlarged the free market dramatically.
People have to buy stuff to keep free enterprise going. Wealth does not “trickle down.”  The consumer drives wealth up. Look at all the road construction — that’s government money going to private companies with free-market employees getting paid to buy stuff.

With only about 50 percent of us paying taxes and those taxes at 35% or less, are we trying to eliminate all of it? Maybe the government can be paid with charitable donations — have the children send pennies and the adults have bake sales. Nobody these days wants to pay for road construction anyway.
Eileen O’Toole
Grand Junction


It’s no surprise that
Tipton changes mind

Why would anyone be surprised that Republican congressional candidate Scott Tipton is changing his mind on Social Security, the 17th Amendment, ending (or not) the Department of Education and term limits?

Tipton filled out tea party surveys and put whatever his opponent Bob McConnell put. He said whatever he had to say to get votes. Isn’t that what a politician does? He blamed his 2006 loss on the political climate and “not enough money” (a politician’s answer to everything). Wonder who he’ll blame this time?
In the Durango Herald, Tipton stated he “hated those things” (the yes/no surveys) because they “put you in a box” and actually force a candidate to take a stand. Sort of like when you have to vote in Congress “yes or no.”  There is no “maybe…let me check with my GOP good ole boys first” answer.

I am saddened and dismayed that, once again, it’s the lesser of two evils. But I’m not surprised Tipton is acting like the politician he has long been, pretending to be, “aw shucks” just a little businessman, when in fact he, and the state GOP have been planning this pathetic coup since he last got beat in 2006.
Dick Morris, Tipton’s No. 1 fan, switched political parties and lands on whatever side works for him at the moment, making him perfect for Tipton. He advises GOP campaigns to “stay in the middle” to get elected.

The middle is exactly where Tipton has always been and will remain — mediocre on his best day. I followed the primary because I am a Republican. I watched Tipton change positions depending on which crowd he was talking to. He does not deserve my vote any more than the Colorado GOP deserves my allegiance.
LeAnn Leffler
Grand Junction


Teck just repeats
scare tactics on ballot

Former politician Ron Teck wrote a letter recently to tell us how to vote on the three tax relief ballot issues — 60, 61, and 101. Teck repeated the silly claim they will “cost” 73,000 jobs.

No tax relief ever hurt any economy in the history of the world. It always creates more jobs. That is true nationally and locally. For example, state aid replaces 100 percent of the 10-year phase-in of school property tax relief, which is 3 percent of total school revenue yearly. That is new money to Mesa County. Add that new money to the tax savings people will also spend or invest, and the economic effect is double.

The 73,000 number was invented by a staff member of the opposition campaign. He was paid to make up the biggest, scariest number he could. The real number of job losses is zero, because new jobs will be created. That’s Economics 101.

The opposition runs those scary TV ads with their $6 million from 124 corporations, 30 percent being out of state or foreign-owned. They don’t tell you the opposition said in May and June the number was 100,000, then 20,000, then 35,000, then 70,000. The number kept changing until they had to pick one to make their TV ad. See “Fibs by Foes” at COtaxreforms.com.

Also there, read the Sept. 15 Wall Street Journal column by a Harvard professor of political economy. He studied 37 years of economic data in 21 countries and found more government spending often brings recession, but reduced spending and lower taxes triggers prosperity. That’s basic economics. We all know you can’t spend yourself rich; neither can government.

These three issues only slow the rate of future government spending, but all the opposition does is threaten to cut the basics. Aren’t you tired of their bully tactics?

Vote for sensible fees, like $10 to register your car; the state pays only $4 to county clerks for that act, and diverts 95 percent of the average $81 fee, doubled last year, to other programs. 

Vote to protect our children from repaying huge debts caused by overspending politicians. The state owes $17 billion, and local governments owe $36 billion. Don’t leave that immoral burden to your kids.
Debbie Schum
Cedaredge


Ballot measures threaten
to make Colorado like California

I’ve been remembering an afternoon in San Francisco when I called 911 from the elementary school where I was working because of nearby gunfire. The police never came.

Since moving to Grand Junction, I now rely on the fact that when I call the police, they show. It is a simple but vital part of the high quality of life we experience here in Colorado.

I worry because I hear about the current 10 to 15 percent cuts to our basic services like police and sheriff due to the economy, and yet we have three ballot measures (Amendments 60 and 61, and Proposition 101) on the ballot that would cut an additional 30 percent. I’ve done the math. It spells worse than a California sort of reduction in the quality of life here in Colorado.

I trust the democratic process. I believe if a majority of informed citizens vote on something it is the will of the people. My worry comes from the “informed” part of that belief. For if citizens are misled or simply uniformed the outcomes can be disastrous.

Measures 60, 61 and 101 are worded in such a way that Joe Citizen, who does little or no research before an election, might easily check the “Yes” box without agreeing with the outcome. It is crafted to seduce the less-than-focused voter to see a small annual personal savings, smile and approve the ballot.

The combined cuts from the current recession and measures 60, 61 and 101 will exceed 50 percent. That’s 50 percent cuts in police, fire, sheriff, sewage, garbage, road repair, schools, colleges, prisons and every other service. It will not feel like a good old-fashioned trimming of excess in government. It will be mayhem.

I’ve lived in a state whose voters were fooled. I’ve waited for police that never showed. I watched that state go from rich and strong to weak and impoverished.

So, please talk. Talk to everyone you know, and ask them to talk with everyone they know. Use civil discourse. If, once informed, the voter still agrees with the measures, then so be it. I really do believe in the democratic process.

Talk and now. Early voting starts soon. Voter registration ends Oct. 4.
Elizabeth Clark
Grand Junction


Salazar will stand up
for Social Security

As an individual who has now paid into Social Security every single year for more than 45 years, I find it abhorrent that certain political figures now propose a cut in benefits for me. I am fairly sure I am not the only individual in that situation.

Cutting our Social Security now creates a major violation of promise and trust. It seems that for the most part, the same politicians who want to cut Social Security are the ones who claim “You can’t trust government.” We certainly will not trust a government that takes away the financial base that we have paid into for 45 years.

I am very aware that life is not fair. However, I believe there is a fundamental difference between fairness and breaking trust with seniors — and cutting Social Security is breaking trust with us.

In view of the upcoming election, and Sarah Palins’ endorsement of his opponent, I endorse and applaud the courageous stand taken by Rep. John Salazar in regard to Social Security cuts.
Don W. Bell
Grand Junction


Passage of Amend 62
would promote discussion

In its Sept. 26 editorial titled “ ‘No’ on Amendment 62,” The Daily Sentinel editorial staff has essentially declared the unborn in-utero developing human a non-entity with no rights or even consideration in the debate. It rather chooses to emphasize what complications, “unintended consequences” or “legal uncertainty” might occur should we legally declare that unborn humans be afforded at least the right to life through the passage of Amendment 62.

If the unborn humans are really just that, “unborn developing humans,” as I and many
others strongly believe, then where is the compassion, the dignity, the respect and, yes, even the legal protection for these the most innocent and vulnerable of humans?

The passage of Amendment 62 would also force us to consider the question, that is difficult for all of us: “When is it justifiable to end the life of another human being (war, self-defense, capital crimes, euthanasia, doctor-assisted suicide, abortion, etc.)?”

Should we continue to ignore this question by dancing around the issue, as does the Sentinel editorial? Or rather should we place into our Colorado Constitution a reality that we all recognize that human life (personhood) begins at the very commencement of the biological development of that human?

Recognizing that reality will allow us to then move on to the discussion and legal determination of when and under what circumstances that life may be ended.

Yes, there may be unintended consequences of the passage of Amendment 62, but one very “intended” consequence would be the immediate cessation of the process that now ends the lives of in-utero humans without due cause, what we now so easily call “legal abortions.”

Please consider a “Yes” vote on Amendment 62.
John Andrews
Grand Junction


Personhood Amendment
supported by science, law

Regarding Dr. Jones letter to the editor: I have seen credible reports that suggest the “the life of the mother” is not a significant concern for the vast majority of abortions performed.

I have read of abortion providers who have killed mothers and have continued providing
abortions.

Talk about the Constitution? I have studied Roe v.Wade and note that the cagey activist justice who wrote it never offered any sound constitutional arguments. (according to Robert H.Bork in his book, “The Tempting of America; Slouching Towards Gomorrah”). And the justice thought it “Cool” to avoid the issue of when life begins” — the very question the Personhood Amendment desires to answer.

Modern Science supports the Personhood Amendment. Law supports the Personhood Amendment as fundamental American law. Tthe Declaration of Independence speaks of a God-given right to life.

Roe v.Wade was contrary to American law and therefore unconstitutional.
Robert Burkholder
Fruita


Woody’s article helped
explain what kitchen does

Thank you so much to William Woody for the article in the Sept. 28 edition of The Daily Sentinel about Christ’s Kitchen in Montrose. His story and the picture gave a good description of what we do at the kitchen.

We continue to welcome senior citizens, homeless individuals and families, and low-income individuals and families as they struggle with the cost of providing healthy meals. We cook for 125 each day, and the menu items vary from week to week, but we do serve from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday. We do take donations, but the meals are free.

We serve a four-course lunch, consisting of homemade soup, fresh salad, an entree and dessert, accompanied by lemonade and iced tea. The generosity of the various businesses here in Montrose allows us to serve great bread and desserts to our guests.
God bless William Woody for helping us to spread the word.
Sharyn Bennett
Christ’s Kitchen Board
Montrose


Editorial let readers decide
case against John Salazar

The editorial in the Sept. 29 edition of The Daily Sentinel is one reason why I subscribe to the Sentinel, not the Montrose Daily Press, even though I live in Montrose.

When I took high school civics classes, I was taught that true journalists should report the facts and let the reader or listener decide for him or herself. In this day and age, it seems most journalists just use their jobs to push their own agendas.

This particular editorial points out the inaccuracies of the John Salazar TV ads discrediting Scott Tipton. The editorial simply gives facts, rather than implying falsehoods, as the TV ad does. The Sentinel allows the reader to then decide based on the facts.

In the last election, I voted for John Salazar. However, now he just comes across as the typical Washington fat cat intent only on keeping his job, not serving the people of his congressional district. Alas, he is not a statesman, simply another politician.
Chris Warren
Montrose



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