Email letters, Dec. 18, 2012

Tipton, Cole should quickly push through middle-class tax cuts

We are writing to ask Rep. Scott Tipton to support without delay the extension of tax cuts for the middle class. We need to deal with our budget deficit in a reasoned and equitable manner; however, using middle-class tax relief as leverage for negotiations on other revenue and expenditure polices is not beneficial to our immediate need to maintain the recovery.

We agree with House Republican Tom Cole of Oklahoma that tax cuts for middle-income wage earners should be extended immediately. In fact, the majority of American voters support this position. The facts are clear. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office has determined that extending the middle-class tax cuts for households earning less than $250,000 a year would boost Gross Domestic Product by 1.3 percent next year and increase employment by 1.6 million jobs.

The CBO also reports that extending tax cuts for the top 2 percent of Americans would generate a paltry .1 percent change in GDP. Even more alarming, extending tax cuts for the top 2 percent would add more than $950 billion to the nation’s debt over the next 10 years. Citizens can check the facts for themselves at http://www.cbo.gov/publication/43694.

We request Rep. Tipton to please work with his colleague, Tom Cole, and make the middle-class tax cuts permanent before Christmas recess. As his constituents, we are asking that he stop using tax relief for hard-working Americans who have lost homes and jobs as leverage for tax cuts on those who have done very well during this massive recession. Decouple the two tax policies now, and keep $2,200 in our pocket.

We can guarantee that we will spend that money to stimulate the economy by shopping at local, truly small businesses in Palisade.

MAGGIE AND STEVE DENNEY

Palisade

Kerry’s exaggerations make him unfit to serve as secretary of state

Why have a secretary of state who is a proven exaggerator and betrayed his fellow soldiers during Viet Nam?
Remember the men who served with John Kerry and all agreed that he exaggerated the missions of “Operation Swift Boats” and told the press exaggerated stories about atrocities committed by U.S. troops?


Telling the truth, regardless of politics, should be the mission of the secretary of state.
Confirm this information by talking to Viet Nam vets.


DAVE E. BROWN
Grand Junction

Connecticut tragedy points out lack of care for mentally ill

Recent violent events such as Sandy Hook, Aurora, Portland, Virginia Tech, and Tucson have one thing in common beside guns: mental illness.

The failure of the various state and local mental health systems to bring proper treatment where most needed is evident.

This all began with “deinstitutionalization” in the 1980s. Although certainly full of advantages, freedom and rights for the mentally ill, the pendulum has swung to where the system is overburdened and underfunded.

After having worked in the mental health business for years, I have no qualms or illusions about persons with mental illness, but I do have a problem with the failure of psychiatrists, psychologists and politicians who treat the mentally ill with cavalier indifference.

The Aurora incident alone shows a system that kicked a can down the road and was just as culpable for 12 deaths. What became of treatment, duty to warn and common sense? The lack of proper care for the mentally ill is just as responsible for these unspeakable tragedies as the other victims—the untreated mentally ill.

MARK YOUNG

Palisade

Sandy Hook murders devolved from devaluation of life

On Friday, 20 children and seven adults were killed by a madman who happened to use a gun. Immediately, the left began calling for gun control laws. Our president led the mourning for this terrible loss of innocent lives. He promised to press ahead to fight for gun control.

I find it laughable that the president is going to lead the fight for gun control. This same president’s Justice Department sold these same weapons to Mexican drug cartels, costing hundreds of innocent Mexican lives. I have never heard the president or Democrats mourn these losses.

Friday, 3,287 innocent lives were ended legally in the United States. Just as the young lives lost in Connecticut, these lives had ahead of them their full potential. Their lives had birthdays and holidays disappear. Worse still, the days prior to and after Dec. 14 saw the same number of innocent lives lost.

Unlike the tragedy in Connecticut, the president and the left do not mourn for the 3,287 lives lost each day. If fact, the president and Democrats have just finished an entire campaign season justifying and exalting in this daily loss of innocent lives.

The first and most important of the unalienable rights our founders wrote about in the Declaration of Independence is life. The past 60 years, our country, led by the Democrats, has devalued this most precious right.

As long as we as a country devalue life through our laws and our actions, our children will never learn to value life and massacres such as Connecticut will continue. It will not matter if you take away an object such as a gun. A person who has been indoctrinated to devalue life will find a way to take it.

KEVIN MCCARNEY
Clifton

Cultural depravity provoked massacre of innocent kids

As we listen to the politicians and commentators discuss the tragedy in Connecticut, it would be wise to remember that few of them really confronted the sickness of our popular culture during this last election cycle.  They talked taxes and stimulus and jobs and energy and gay marriage, but when it came to the endangered soul of America, they remained effectively silent.

Surely the president’s tears are sincere. Nevertheless, one hopes other political “leaders” and he might reflect on the financial support they received from Hollywood and its cultural and corporate cohort, the video game industry, which among all our institutions have done the most to set the stage for this satanic mayhem, this culture of depravity.

Does anyone believe that this murderer of schoolchildren did not play hour after hour of vicious video games, watch putrid television shows and indulge shadowy fantasies on the Internet? All of these mass killers do. It is the common thread among them.

The culture of depravity is the realm of the slaughterhouse video games, the torture shows and murder on television, the Internet’s pornographic pit, the zombie apocalypse and the social network itself in which everyone’s lives have become a TV show.

It is the empty, perverse, voyeuristic, violent climax of freedom’s attempts to survive the tidal wave of immorality that has accompanied the dark side of its expression. It is the place where nothing and no one is real. Our acceptance of the virtual world has created a scenario in which the weakest and cruelest among us see others as digital apparitions, where flesh and blood children become unreal targets in a game.

As it so happens, our acceptance of the virtual world also allows an American soldier sitting at a joystick in Pakistan to bomb villages by remote control, murdering other nation’s innocent children anonymously and with impunity. We cannot lie to ourselves about our own murderous national sins and our own perverse pastimes and expect this nation not to breed perverts and murderers.

SAND SHEFF
Moab, Utah


Insurance companies use prospect of Obamacare to jack up rates

Don’t let the insurance companies fool you.  They love Obamacare.  My wife’s health insurance has doubled the past four years. 

Last year we raised her deductible to where she could still be considered covered.  This year the insurance company raised her coverage to a little more than $900 per month.  The accompanying letter said she was lucky that she was grandfathered in; otherwise, her insurance would be considerably higher. 

Next year she should be eligible for Medicare; then some other poor taxpayer can help pay her medical cost.


ROBERT SLAVEN
Grand Junction

Create infrastructure for biking, walking to reach “Livable City’ goal

How would you improve the community of Grand Junction if you potentially had $100 million to spend? The City of Grand Junction is asking Grand Junction voters for permission to retain tax revenues to continue to fund projects that benefit the community and the economy. The full story can be found at http://www.gjcity.org, under the “TABOR Comments & Questions” tab.

Grand Valley Bikes, a local 501c3 bicycle advocacy organization, applauds the City of Grand Junction for setting its goal to be “The Most Livable Community West of the Rockies” by 2025.

We appreciate the added bike lanes, sidewalks, wider shoulders and trails that have been added as new projects have been built. The continuation of the Riverfront Trail has been an outstanding example of adding to the livability of the Grand Valley.

We encourage the City Council to continue adding multimodal facilities to create safer pedestrian and biking in Grand Junction and to continue toward being the Most Livable Community West of the Rockies.

Grand Valley Bikes has seen many issues come up that highlight the need for pedestrian and bicycling infrastructure around District 51 schools, community parks, east-west bicycle corridors and connectivity to those areas. There is now an opportunity to improve and clean up some of the problem areas that have developed in past years.

A livable community allows everyone to move around safely, especially those that aren’t driving, including elderly populations and school-age children.

We want to welcome a burgeoning retirement community, who may target the Grand Valley as home, as well as young professionals looking for a great place to move to and raise children. A walkable, bikeable, livable community benefits all ages of people and improves the economy, health and of our community.

Please take the two-question online survey at http://www.gjcity.org (click the “TABOR Comments & Questions” tab). Perhaps suggest the City take this opportunity to make our Grand Valley The Most Livable Community West of the Rockies by 2025 by devoting upcoming funds for multimodal transportation infrastructure in areas where problems exist.

ELIZABETH COLLINS
Board of Directors
Grand Valley Bikes
Grand Junction

Put firearms in all schools to prevent horrific acts

Yes, it is time to change some rules concerning firearms. It is time to allow them in every building. At the discretion of the individuals, school staff should be allowed to carry a weapon.

Connecticut was a classic meth style crime, and he would have found a way to cause harm. Remember, when guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns. Look to the character of our society for the reasons such horrific acts occur.

DAVID DASHNER

Grand Junction

Successful economic development depends on innovation, collaboration

Thank you for your guest column in Sunday’s paper by Kelly Flennikan about economic development incentives. I am a new board member to the Grand Junction Economic Partnership and recently got more involved because I believe in the new direction the organization is taking. Through my involvement with GJEP, I have had the opportunity to see firsthand that incentives are an important tool to economic development.

And, I’m pleased that Mesa County has a strong leader at the helm, guarding the taxpayers’ hard-earned dollars. More importantly, however, I am encouraged by the innovation and collaboration that GJEP utilizes to encourage economic development. GJEP understands that incentive monies are few, so it thrives on thinking outside the box.

A recent example of this was seen in GJEP’s efforts to incentivize a company to take on an anodizing process as part of its operations. This innovative idea creates a handful of jobs today and enhances our community’s opportunity to recruit new jobs in the aviation sector for years to come.

As business leaders, we need to get involved in organizations such as GJEP. We need to be collaborative and innovative if we are truly going to see successful economic development in our community. Great ideas are only great if you share them and someone acts on them.

TIM FOSTER
Colorado Mesa University President
Grand Junction

 


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