Letters

Letters 12-14-2014

Come Together There is a time-honored war strategy known as “divide and conquer,” and never has it been more effective than now. The enemy is using it against us through television, internet and other social media. I opened a Facebook account a couple of years back to gain more entries in local contests. Since then I had fallen under its spell; I rushed into judgment on several social issues based on information found on those pages

Quiet The Phones! This weekend we attended two beautiful Christmas musical events and the enjoyment of both were significantly diminished by self-absorbed boors holding their stupid iPhones high overhead to capture extremely crucial and highly needed photos. We too own iPhones, but during a public concert we possess the decency and manners to leave them turned off and/or at home. Today’s performance, the annual Messiah Sing at Traverse City’s Central Methodist Church, was a new low: we watched as Mr. Self-Absorbed not only took several photos but then afterwards immediately posted them to his Facebook page. We were dumbfounded.

A Torturous Defense In defense of the C.I.A.’s use of torture in a mostly fruitless search for vital information, some suggest that the dire situation facing us after 9-11, justified the use of torture even at the expense of the potential loss of much of our nation’s moral authority.

Home · Articles · News · Letters · Letters 5/16/11
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Letters 5/16/11

- May 16th, 2011
The Republicans & Big Oil
For the past two weeks, Republican congressmen faced blistering attacks at
town hall meetings for their vote on the Ryan Plan, which lowers the tax
rate for the wealthy another 10% while dismantling Medicare and Medicaid.
Republicans all claim they are carrying out the “will of the people” so
let’s look at what the people told them: Leave Medicare alone, tax the
rich and stop the oil subsidies. When confronted with the news that oil
companies posted profits of $38 billion in the first quarter, a few
sheepishly agreed, “maybe we should take a look at it.”
But that is not what they did. On May 5, with the media consumed with
Osama bin Laden, they quietly and unanimously passed the Restarting
American Offshore Drilling Act which, among other things, extends oil
subsidies. This is the second vote in three months they have taken to
protect oil companies’ taxpayer handouts.
It is no surprise that the GOP protects big oil. The Republican sponsors
of the bill took in $8.8 million from big oil in campaign cash. Rep. Dave
Camp received $77,000. Before the first vote in March, BP contributed
$1,000 to Camp, who is chairman of House Ways and Means. Three other key
players, Speaker Boehner, Kevin McCarthy, House Whip and Michigan’s Fred
Upton, chairman of Energy and Commerce were all gifted $5,000. Upton was
given $100,000 in the 2010 election. All defeated the Democrats’ bill to
rescind the subsidies in order to reduce the deficit.
In the past 10 years, Big Oil has contributed $238.7 million to congress,
75% to Republicans. In addition to the Republicans guarding their
subsidies, Dave Camp’s taxation committee has written thousands of
loopholes in the tax code for them. Last year they paid nothing.
Follow the money, Dave Camp is not looking out for you.

Julie A Racine • Marion

National security & NPR
It is shortsighted to cut NPR funding now when all things are carefully
considered.
NPR stations can be important communication branches for both FEMA and the
Department of Homeland Security. Wartime funding cuts in any of these
could lead to another “At Dawn We Slept” disaster, but on civilian basis
this time.
For proof, Interlochen Public Radio has broadcast tests of the Emergency
Alert System in both February and March. Hence, NPR stations are a
national necessity in wartime than most Americans understand.
For added security, FEMA radio ads this year have warned to get ready for
a national emergency. Those ads have said to make a plan and to carry it
out by doing something different every month.
In response, prudent people will do their civil defense work before hand.
Then they can confidently go forward into a trouble and even dangerous
national future.
Those people will be reaping their safety rewards by making hay wile the
sun shines. Will you?

Louis Burford • Petoskey

Unions seek support
We the people of The Coalition to Preserve the American Dream met and
organized in Manistee on May 11, to support the needs of the community.
The hopes and dreams of its citizens are:
• family-supporting jobs,
• fair wages,
• safe working conditions,
• preservation of collective bargaining,
• dignified retirement,
• barrier-free access for persons with
disabilities,
• world-class public educational oppor-
tunities,
• strong public safety programs, and
• vibrant community programs.

The proposed state budget will devastate these things mentioned above that
we hold dear.
We urge you to join with us and to become informed. Please contact State
Representative Ray Franz, State Senator Darwin Booher, and Governor Rick
Snyder (www.michigan.gov), and ask them to stop the assault on the
American Dream. After all, where in the proposed budget do we find a bill
that promotes “the general welfare” of the citizens of this community and
the State of Michigan?

Nanci Swenson • Manistee
 
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