Printed letters, Oct. 12, 2010
Taxes have been used to fund wars
After some research, I find that throughout the history of our nation during wartime, taxes were raised to help pay for the wars — as much as 50 percent during World War II — except during the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, when we had no tax increase.
In fact, taxes on the rich were cut, although the richest Americans seemed to do fine with increased taxes under President Clinton. The result is that just the servicemen and women and their families are the only ones making sacrifices for these two wars. The billions of dollars the war cost was borrowed, mostly from China and Japan. We are fighting these two wars without the public making any sacrifices and that is where most of our huge deficit came from.
After having a surplus of $30 billion courtesy of the Clinton administration, the Bush administration not only squandered that surplus, but accumulated more debt than the 42 predecessors combined. What happened to this huge deficit? It was conveniently dumped into the lap of President Barack Obama, along with the worst depression since the ‘30s.
He’s not a miracle person who can just wave a wand and have our jobs come back. But this administration is trying with stimulus packages, which is all they can do to bring jobs back.
With Republicans outspending Democrats 6 to 1, mostly from millionaires and large corporations who, through numerous lobbyists have, after the Supreme Court gave them the power they wanted, are flooding the airwaves with outrageous ads — many deliberate lies. Now those very same people who got us into this mess and this huge debt want us to vote them back into power. How ridiculous.
Democrats have been wasting taxpayer money
Financially, the United States is on the precipice of economic disaster, thanks to trillion-dollar deficit spending and a national debt that has burgeoned from $10 trillion to $13 trillion in 20 months. Many like to lay the blame at Bush’s door, but that belies an ignorance of the fact that all spending originates in the House. Since 2007, the shameful growth in spending has been under the total control of Democrats.
Two of the most egregious, fiscally irresponsible offenders have been our own Rep. John Salazar and Sen. Michael Bennet. Both try to project themselves as fiscal conservatives, but they have marched in lockstep with President Obama, Sen. Harry Reid, and Rep. Nancy Pelosi, et al, in pushing this nation to the brink of bankruptcy and enslaving generations not yet born to unsustainable debt.
Each year, millions of taxpayer dollars are wasted on earmarks — funding that fails to see legislative scrutiny and amounts to nothing more than picking the taxpayers’ pockets. In the last three years, Salazar has obtained $77.7 million in earmarks, and in just one legislative cycle, Bennet accumulated a whopping $45.4 million. Neither man will agree to sign the no-earmarks pledge, content on continuing to reach into taxpayers’ pockets to fund their projects when the country is living on money borrowed from foreign entities.
Both men have strong ties to PACs, labor unions and various lobby groups outside Colorado. Salazar has even proposed a convoluted land swap of public land for the benefit of his largest contributor, a billionaire from Florida who owns coal mines here. It seems that their interests are more with their own continued longevity in Washington, than the people they represent.
Illegal aliens cost the taxpayers of this country billions annually, yet Bennet and Salazar much prefer amnesty for illegals in lieu of security for our country. These men, each in their own way, have had a direct hand in the decline of America and should be unceremoniously retired on Election Day.
Sheriff, search and rescue help find lost hunter
On the night of Sept. 16, one of our hunting party did not return to camp in the Grand Mesa National Forest. Members of the Mesa County Search and Rescue team and the Mesa County Sheriff’s Department responded to the scene. Everything turned out fine.
I want to thank Sheriff Stan Hilkey’s deputies and the search-and-rescue volunteers for their assistance.
RUSSELL S. SMITH
San Angelo, Texas