Email letters, Sept. 27, 2012

National debt will fall on Americans like heavy house of cards

Jim Spehar’s Sept. 25 column touting public sector jobs mysteriously ignored the $16 trillion national debt that government has run up in part to pay for them.

The private sector produces a profit that is taxed by government to fund necessary public sector functions. When money paid by taxpayers in the private sector equals money received by those in the public sector, the budget is in balance and citizens are paying for what we get.

This should be the norm with occasional exceptions for items such as capital improvements and national emergencies when debt is justified and will be paid off.

But for decades government has routinely spent far more than it takes in to fulfill endless vote-pandering promises and entitlements and makes up the difference by printing and borrowing money. We are living far beyond our means in this country, and Jim’s column confirms we also have our local fingers deep in that federal pie.

The accelerating growth of debt to support this standard of living is not sustainable. As tax receivers continue to levy demands that taxpayers cannot afford, whether for make-work government jobs or pure handouts, we move toward the precipice. This will eventually crash down on us like a house of cards with an anvil on top. 

BILL MARVEL
Grand Junction

Forgo political commercials, research candidates’ records, promises

Mute your televisions when political commercials come on. Instead, take the time to research what the candidates have done and will do. See if what they are saying is what they are doing or proposing to do.

I was pleased to hear that both of our Colorado U.S. senators (Udall and Bennett) along with our U.S. representative (Tipton) all chose to support the designation of Chimney Rock as a National Monument, which lies in our 3rd Congressional District. Like many in western Colorado, I cherish our public lands and scenic/cultural wonders.

I’m confused about Tipton, though, after listening to a long debate on C-SPAN earlier this spring. An amendment for which our own Rep. Tipton voted “yes” would actually make it much harder for a president to designate a place such as Chimney Rock as a national monument. When I called Tipton’s DC staff, they said he wouldn’t be budging on that amendment and would be voting “yes” to make it even harder for a president to designate a national monument.

Interesting … to make it more difficult for Chimney Rock to achieve national monument status, yet advocate for Chimney Rock. Does this make any sense in the same year?

Now I hear Tipton saying he wants to protect Medicare for seniors, yet he supports Paul Ryan’s plan that would force seniors to find their own coverage, possibly using a voucher that may well not cover the current coverage afforded seniors now.

Tipton’s campaign website states, “It empowers the individual to make decisions regarding their insurance and health care based on their particular circumstances and priorities … It puts consumers of healthcare – the patient—in control of their health care dollars.”

Imagine if Republicans dismantle the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), you have pre-existing-conditions, you have children still between the ages of 19 and 26 who need insurance, you can’t afford basic preventive tests that are free and now you are also of Medicare age.

Tipton supports you looking for your own insurance? Good luck!

Research your candidates first. Don’t vote until you are an informed voter. Join me in supporting Sal Pace for Congressional District 3.

LINDA REEVES
Grand Junction

Is King’s good judgment going up in smoke?

Do I have this right? Is Sen. Steve King gambling that corporate tobacco profits are more valuable than our young people’s health? Has he forgotten our state government absconded with millions of dollars of the class-action tobacco awards and used it to balance our state budget for one year? The money was misdirected, and the budget was balanced at the cost of truth and information about the disastrous effects of tobacco use.

Hasn’t King seen the videos of a six-year-old Indonesian child smoking two packs of cigarettes a day? Six years old! Tobacco and other corporations have shown they have no desire to show anyone anything except record profits. How does he think facts should be exchanged? Tobacco corporations certainly won’t, as that’s not good for their profit margin.

King’s view about picking winners and losers applies only to businesses involved and not the people who are or will be addicted to cancer for profit. My father died of cancer from smoking way too long when he couldn’t kick the addiction. I was able to kick the habit and can only hope I will make it through without throat cancer, COPD, or any of the other myriad diseases caused by tobacco.

Does King think it’s OK for our state to have used money awarded specifically to inform and protect our young people of the serious health damages by tobacco, smoked, chewed, dipped between your cheek and gum, or used any other way? Hiding information must be King’s way of furthering his agendas, as after his DUI bill failed when public input was allowed, he manipulated it this last time to allow no public input and if legislative Republicans didn’t hate LGBTs so much, it would have passed.

What twisted logic.

RALPH HICKS

Clifton

Consider Obama’s record before casting votes

Government dependency programs have jumped for the fourth year in a row, while an ever-shrinking number of we-the-taxpayers struggle to pay for them. Almost 50 percent of Americans pay no income tax to help fund the programs that almost 50 percent of Americans use for food, housing, school lunches, etc. This unsustainable system will surely collapse if we keep the same president.

President Obama missed his daily INTEL briefings (not unusual) for several days before Sept. 11. The murders that day of our diplomats and Navy Seals in Libya resulted from a planned terrorist attack for which our embassy was inexcusably not adequately prepared or armed. This administration then unsuccessfully tried to convince us that the attacks were spontaneous demonstrations caused by an Internet video disrespectful of Mohammed. Obama should have been paying attention, but he thought that his election alone would magically change the world. Or he wanted the U.S. brought down a peg. Which was it?

In 2008 candidate Obama pledged, “Under my plan, no family making less than $250,000 a year will see any form of tax increase—not your income tax, not your payroll tax, not your capital gains taxes, not any of your taxes.”

However, the Congressional Budget Office just determined that Obamacare’s insurance mandate will tax six million Americans a minimum of $695 apiece in 2016, increasing through 2022. Almost five million of those people will have incomes well below the federal poverty level, according to the CBO. Another broken pledge.

Vote wisely. Our future is at stake.

ANGIE MANY
Eckert

Vote for content of character, not color of candidate’s skin

In 1963 Martin Luther King Jr. made his “I Have A Dream” speech. His main point was that he dreamed of a nation that would judge people not by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

The 2008 presidential election proved that King’s dream was still not a reality. Many people voted for Obama based on the color of his skin and not the content of his character. This was proven to me as a number of people across the nation, including some smart people such as a local physician, told me that it felt good to vote for a black man for president.

The 2012 election will again be a test of King’s dream. This time, I ask all to vote based on Obama’s character and not his skin color.

He said he would have five days of public scrutiny of passed bills before he signed them.  That hasn’t happened on any bill I’m aware of. Has he kept lobbyists out of his administration as he insisted he would?  No, he hasn’t. He said he would reduce the number of earmarks to the level they were in 1994. Did he?  No, the omnibus spending bill had more than 8,500 earmarks in it alone. Has he conducted his administration open to other ideas and thus in an atmosphere of bipartisanship?  He said he would; yet he didn’t accept any input from Republicans on Obamacare. In these few examples he lied. I could fill this editorial page with Obama’s lies.

What can be said about the character of one who will not release his college transcripts?  He successfully completed Columbia and Harvard, didn’t he?  Or did he?  Was he given a pass due to skin color and thus his character didn’t fully develop?

How about the character of one who judges people by their skin color and not the content of their character as Obama has done on several occasions?  Remember the “beer summit” where Obama tried to smooth over his attack on a white policeman? 

No one should ever vote for anyone based on skin color while ignoring his or her character. A person who lies about what he will do, hides his past and attacks others based on skin color is a flawed character and, regardless of his skin color, doesn’t deserve a vote. Obama is precisely that person.

RICK L. COLEMAN
Grand Junction

Garco commissioners urged to readopt resolution

It is disappointing that there are those in our society who seem to have little better to do than dream up lawsuits over trivial matters when they do not get their way. It is sadder still when public policy is made as a result.

Take, for example, the lawsuit leveled by the Grand Valley Citizens Alliance and the Western Colorado Congress against the Garfield Board of County Commissioners in response to the board’s resolution concerning the BLM’s programmatic environmental impact statement on oil shale. That resolution was rescinded as a result.

Let’s assume that the charges against the board are technically accurate – that public notice of the Vernal meeting was posted a few minutes late, and that the Garfield commissioners failed to provide either enough details about the meeting or a good enough legal reason for attending it. (It seems incredible that discussing with their counterparts a major federal government decision that has direct and long term implications for their region is not a legitimate reason, but OK.)

Let’s even further concede that the three hours of public testimony and months of build-up to the formal adoption of the resolution were insufficient for energy opponents to air their gripes.

The fact remains that the BLM has released an atrocious impact statement with a preferred alternative that would effectively spell the end of oil shale research, development and commercialization, along with the energy security, jobs, and other economic benefits it would bring – an impact statement ironically only inflicted on the American people as result of yet another legal temper-tantrum/lawsuit.

The Garfield County commissioners still have the responsibility to join with the rest of the region in opposing this punch to the gut of their community; therefore, their only reasonable course of action is to readopt their resolution without delay.

BRIAN HULL
Grand Junction

Obama’s first term hints at what to expect in a second one

President Obama is leading the United States down to a third world power and letting the United Nations tell us what to do.

He is out trying to repeat history by attracting the young and the gullible to his way of thinking.

His first term in office should give us a hint of what is coming if he is reelected. Unemployment is shameful; our national debt has skyrocketed; and our national security is frightening. He also is secretly attacking the Christians and most other religious faiths.

After looking at Romney’s and Obama’s financial statements in the newspaper, I surely would rather have Romney handling my tax dollars than Obama.

Obama has a poor record to stand on, so his campaign advertisements are negative misinformation on the Romney-Ryan plan.

If you are not convinced, you should read “Fool Me Twice” a nonfiction bestseller by Aaron Klein and Brenda J. Elliott. This book tells of Obama’s radical plan for a progressive socialist takeover. There are two new books to the bestseller list on this subject. Number 2 is “The Amateur” by Edward Klein, who outlines how Obama is too inept to lead. Number 3 is “Obama’s America” by Dinesh D’Sousa, showing how Obama is the designer of American decline.

DICK TODD
Montrose

Didier right about signers of Taxpayer Protection Pledge

Paul Didier’s letter (Signing Taxpayer Protection Pledge verges on sedition) aptly castigates the signatories – including Paul Ryan and our own “representative” Scott Tipton – of anti-tax extremist Grover Norquist’s “pledge.”


By subordinating his oath of office to an unelected self-appointed lobbyist, by disloyally pledging his allegiance to a subversive Tea Party agenda rather than to the Constitution, and by voting accordingly, Tipton has disqualified himself for re-election in the 3d Congressional District.


Moreover, not only is “the pledge” effectively seditious, it is also oxymoronic – because it fails to afford “taxpayer protection” against the mounting burden of our national debt and has had a pernicious delaying effect on bipartisan efforts to confront that issue.


In late 2009, the House passed legislation to create a bipartisan debt commission. In January 2010, six Republicans sponsoring it in the Senate voted against their own bill – with another abstaining. O Congressional Budget Office n Feb. 18, 2010, President Obama created the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform by executive order. That “Simpson-Bowles Commission” – which included Paul Ryan – began deliberating in April 2010.


When the commission announced that it was considering “revenue enhancements” (e.g. “closing loopholes,” eliminating unneeded subsidies,” and/or “limiting deductions”) in addition to substantial budget cuts, Norquist proclaimed that all such “enhancements” would violate the pledge if they raised anyone’s taxes.


In November 2010, the 111th Congress was elected – buoyed by the mindless “no tax” pledge. On Nov. 10, 2010, the commission’s cochairmen released their debt reduction recommendations. On Dec. 3, 2010, Ryan and all other signatories of the pledge irresponsibly voted against them – killing the bipartisan effort.


Ryan then falsely accused Obama of walking away from the commission’s proposals!


In fact, Republicans created the $16 trillion national debt. and Republican signatories of the pledge have been obstructing all efforts to address the problem for two years now.

BILL HUGENBERG

Grand Junction

It’s time for America to have true leader

I am amazed that anyone would even consider reelecting Obama.

Our foreign policy is a shambles, our economy is a mess, and all our president does is to fly around on “spiffy” 747s, hobnobbing with the 1 percent in Hollywood, attending fundraisers and doing interviews on meaningless shows like The View while ignoring chances to engage with other foreign leaders and Congress to solve our problems.

Wake up, America. We are on a path to ruin without a true leader who will lead from the front and not from behind.

RICHARD BLOSSER

Grand Junction



COMMENTS

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Mr. Hugenberg, I have no bone to pick with you over whether Scott Tipton should be re-elected. I actually agree with you that he should not be. I do, however, want to point out that Mr. Tipton does not and never has never had any “allegiance to “ a Tea Party agenda. If you refer to the backing and beliefs of the group known as Western Slope Conservative Alliance and claiming to be a “tea party” while endorsing Mr. Tipton you must also know that they are only an arm of the MCRP and are not supportive of real tea party values and principals. The only candidate out there for the 3d Congressional District in this election is Tisha Casida who does completely support the Constitution

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