Printed letters, January 17, 2013

I’ve seen several stories recently about Colorado’s new, all Democratic-controlled government. The House, Senate and governor are ready to get right to work on the important issue facing Colorado. It’s not education, jobs or the economy, not the tough decisions to curb spending, not energy or the environment.

The No. 1 item on the agenda of the new Legislature is civil unions. The article published in The Daily Sentinel Jan. 9, “Unfinished Business at the Capitol,” gives real insight to Colorado’s future and agenda. The new speaker of the House is openly gay and is taking it upon himself to prioritize civil unions as the most important agenda item to begin the new session.

His reasons include the argument that this will eliminate Colorado’s nickname of “hate state.” I’ve lived here 50 years, and my wife was born here. Neither of us has ever heard our state referred to in this way. Until recently I would characterize it as a “moral state.”

This new speaker urged the Legistature to “with bipartisan support, pass civil unions this year.” I’m not sure what is bipartisan about a Democrat-controlled House and Senate and the ear of the governor. The article goes on to say this bill includes support from all 20 Democrats in the Senate and all 37 Democrats in the House, plus one Republican. Speaker Mark Ferrandino needs to read the definition of bipartisan.

We (the citizens of Colorado) elected these individuals to represent us. It seems obvious that their agenda is self-serving and self-motivated. I would urge current legislators to remember they represent the entire state and act accordingly.

RANDY LITWILLER

Crawford

Public/private partnerships 
would aid national economy

Josh Penry’s recent column about the construction of I-70 was interesting. In it, he laments that we no longer attempt such “grand projects.” That’s truly ironic, considering people on the right usually deny that the government can have any role in job creation.

Penry’s column praises what is probably the best example of how public/private partnerships can create jobs and foster economic growth. The National Interstate and Defense Highways Act of 1956 was a key factor in the postwar economic boom. Since our infrastructure is now in tatters, let’s once again do some “nation building” here at home.

Hopefully, Penry and other Republicans will direct their energies toward helping to create a bipartisan plan to get our country moving again. If, instead, they insist on creating false crises such as the coming return of the debt-ceiling debacle and cause our credit rating to be downgraded for a second time, they will prove that their hatred of Obama exceeds their love for our country.

JERRY HALPIN

Grand Junction

 

Cutting Social Security, 
Medicare won’t fix economy

Whenever we hear the words “spending cuts,” we should realize that, for most Republicans in Congress, this is code for cutting Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. If everyday Americans think those words mean gaining efficiencies, those words can be misleading.

The casualty of misleading rhetoric is actually finding good solutions. Spending spared us from the downslide that European countries experienced with austerity. Money taken out of the economy produces recession.

Social Security has little to do with deficits, except that it has more than a $2 trillion surplus in Treasury bonds that must be added to the debt. Social Security can be sustained by raising the $110,000 cutoff point. Medicare was extended by eight years by the Affordable Care Act. It can be extended further with efficiencies and bargaining for drugs.

We hear, “The president is running up the credit card.” Remember that, according to Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution, only Congress has the ability to tax and spend. The purpose of raising the debt limit is for Congress to pay its bills.

Ending Social Security and Medicare would not fix our economy. In fact, Social Security payments help to provide needed spending during the recession. By their rhetoric and willingness to not pay our bills, Republicans in Congress are the greatest threat to our economy.

Deficits are solved by adding jobs, cutting waste and fraud and making it possible to improve oneself. We need to be adding jobs by building infrastructure and hiring back teachers, police and firemen.

Blindly hacking at spending, beyond cuts already agreed upon, is dangerous. Threatening to shut down the government, risk our credit rating or default on debts to get blind cuts is just crazy.

HARRY McDONALD

Grand Junction

 

Robinson deserves coverage 
and community’s respect

Thank you very much for duly honoring a fine gentleman who used his enthusiasm, talents and expertise to guide so many students during his many years of service to Mesa State College and this community.

Bill Robinson is so deserving of this community’s respect and appreciation, and may Robinson Theater retain that designation for the life of what is now Colorado Mesa University.

It was so good to retrieve The Daily Sentinel Monday morning and read something positive and heart-warming for a change. Thank you.

KATHLEEN DAVIS

Grand Junction


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