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- August 16th, 2010
Migrant issues
In regard to your Random Thoughts
article in the August 2 edition, this is a written reply, comment and
challenge to you.
“Deport a migrant, raise your grocery bill” gives a lopsided view of
the cost of what realistic price raising is. Do you know that 18
states in the USA with budget shortages have paid more for illegals
than the amount of their budget deficit? Illegals cost the entire
country an estimated $113 billion per year, nearly $29 billion at the
Federal level and $84.2 billion at the State and local level.
I live part of the year in the area of Tucson, AZ. I live a quarter of
a mile from a freeway (highway 19) that is the main route from Mexico
to the U.S. I have witnessed the runaway illegals, sometimes more than
20 odd numbers to a truck or van, and the news
media repeatedly covers all of the illegal migration incidents in and
around the area.
We have helicopters and border patrols on the move as they serve to
protect the safety of legal U.S. citizens. Just before I left the area
in April another raid was made on one of their “safe” houses where the
“coyotes” were holding illegals hostage until they paid another
ransom. The young girls who could not pay the ransom were sold as
prostitutes. Drive-by shootings and house invasions are common in
Tucson and other border areas.
Do you think -- and again I challenge you to research -- how the
benefits of illegal
immigration could offset in any way the cost of American lives and the
billions of dollars we spend on prisoners, health care delivery,
education, and police and border protection?
The immigrants who work on the farms, factories, businesses, etc., and
have work permits or guest worker passes to do so are welcome and
needed, but we need to enforce and monitor the manner in which they
do. You could not go into Mexico and work without identification and
permission. You cannot even vote in this country without registration
and identification. No one is saying that immigrants cannot come into
this country to work.

Donna Bauman • Manistee

Wine Rack part II
In response to Anna Norris’ critique of the Wine Rack in GearBox: She
missed the point, in my opinion.
The Wine Rack’s purpose is to enable women to sneak adult beverages
into events that ban them. Bra size enhancement is merely a desirable
or undesirable side effect, depending upon one’s point of view.

John R. Joslyn • Honor

Conservative fixes
Your Letters page on August 2 showed frustration and anger at the way
the country is going and asked what would be a conservative
First and foremost is the belief that free market capitalism is a more
efficient system than big government socialism. You can’t put a
bureaucrat between yourself and your doctor or banker or energy
supplier and expect to save money. Don’t subsidize anything -- let the
market decide.
Fiscal responsibility! Don’t spend money you don’t have. When you do
spent it, be aware of the opportunity costs. Stimulus money has gone
for paving bike paths, teen pregnancy counseling, sidewalks to
nowhere, etc., and is now unavailable for job creation, which should
involve tax cuts. Unfunded
defined benefit contracts should be illegal and federal spending
should be limited by law to 20% of GDP.
Smaller government. There’s a difference between regulation and
strangulation. Our individual freedoms are being shipped to
Washington, D.C. Decisions are politicized to favor voting groups.
Look at the way the BP oil spill was handled, or the Chrysler
dealership closings. It’s correct to worry about what to cut, but the
flip side is that government employees make about twice as much as
those in the private sector for the same skills. Privatize anyone?
Federal programs and spending are the problem. No state, including
Michigan, is going to get out of the unemployment cycle until
Washington gets their boots off the neck of private industry.
“Spreading the wealth around” is also called a race to the bottom.
Free lunch (socialism) works great until you run out of other peoples’
money, and we’re at that point.

Hank Rohs • Kalamazoo

Beyond Wikileaks
The recent criticism of the web site seems to ignore the
fact that in recent years, and especially under the Bush
administration, hiding malfeasance on the part of the government and
the Pentagon using “national security” was rampant.
While Wikileaks may be criticized for possibly putting some lives at
risk by exposing lies and crimes of the government, how many lives
were wasted in the war in Iraq that was promoted by lies? How many
lives were wasted in war crimes committed by U.S. soldiers in Iraq and
Afghanistan and exposed to public view by Wikileaks?
It seems to me that the problem that the Pentagon has related to
Wikileaks is of their own doing, and they can solve the problem by
making sure what they do in their wars in the future is not criminal
or shameful. Then there will be no need of a Wikileaks.

Randy Bond • Beulah
More college advice
Thanks to the Northern Express for its tips on getting into college
and including me in the article as an academic adviser. I feel really
passionate about young people and am vested in their success and their
futures after high school. I am continually impressed at how bright
they are and just how much they have to offer. I don’t ever want
someone to feel they can’t do something just because they don’t know
how to go about it.
In that spirit, I wanted to add a few more tips that had to be
excluded due to space constraints.
• Ask whether professors or teaching assistants teach classes in the
freshmen and sophomore years, and just how big the classes get.
• Keep up your grades and activities in your senior year to prove that
you’re not a slacker at heart. Colleges often wait to evaluate your
application for senior grades if you are a borderline candidate.
• Let the admissions office know when you visit campus. Some colleges
keep track of the visits to determine just how interested you are,
especially at the smaller colleges. Visiting and showing an interest
can really make a difference.
Although I offer my services for a fee, I’d be willing to answer any
questions that are emailed into the Express (mail them to with “college question” in the subject line.

Sally Stilwill, educational consultant • TC

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