Letters to the editor: Sept. 14 - East Valley Tribune: Opinion

Letters to the editor: Sept. 14

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Posted: Sunday, September 14, 2008 6:53 pm | Updated: 9:09 pm, Fri Oct 7, 2011.

We encourage readers to submit letters to the editor on issues of interest to East Valley residents. Submissions should be no longer than 300 words, factually accurate and original thoughts of the writer. Please be brief and include name, address, city and phone number for verification. Letters and call-in comments may be edited for clarity and length.

Submit your letter to the editor

We encourage readers to submit letters to the editor on issues of interest to East Valley residents. Submissions should be no longer than 300 words, factually accurate and original thoughts of the writer. Please be brief and include name, address, city and phone number for verification. Letters and call-in comments may be edited for clarity and length.

Submit your letter to the editor

PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION

Obama tax plan discriminates

Suppose someone proposed raising income tax rates for people whose last names begin with the letter “A” while lowering tax rates for everyone else. Most people (and our courts) would see such a move as an unfair attempt to treat a small group unjustly.

Sen. Barack Obama proposes a similarly unjust measure. He would raise tax rates for those with high incomes despite the fact those with high incomes already pay the highest tax rates and receive fewer government services than the average American since they do not receive benefits from social programs.

It appears to me that supporters of the Obama plan are letting envy and covetousness cloud their judgment. They do not see that voting to increase taxes on the wealthy is little different than theft.

Men have long been tempted to steal from the wealthy. Bank robber Willie Sutton is claimed to have said of the banks he robbed “that is where the money is.” Robin Hood robbed the rich to give to the poor. Both Willie Sutton and Robin Hood were thieves and should not be role models for civilized society.

Obama must consider whether Christian values are embodied in a plan which looks a lot like theft and appears to incite the middle class to vote based on greed, envy, and covetousness.

The Bible warns that wealth can be a snare to the wealthy. Society’s continual attempts to steal from the wealthy does not help the wealthy avoid this trap. The Bible commands charity as the way to help the poor. Voting to force the wealthy to fund social programs is sinful theft and serves to crowd out true charity.

THOMAS C. SCHUELKE

MESA

Marx not Obama’s influence

Eric Burton’s claim (“Danger of Obama’s 'collective’ ideas,” Tuesday) that Barack Obama’s call for collective action can be traced to Karl Marx is absurd. Obama talks about individual and collective salvation. It is obvious that Obama is inspired by the Christian message of service to the poor.

A desire for salvation is not a Marxist message, since Marx was an atheist.

Burton also claims that an inheritance tax is a Marxist tactic.

Perhaps Marx would approve of inheritance taxes, but that alone does not make them a bad idea. After all, it was Christ who said that a rich person has as much chance of going to heaven as a camel does of fitting through the eye of a needle.

In addition, you don’t have to be a Marxist or a Christian to approve of inheritance taxes. Anyone who thinks people should earn what they have, rather than having wealth handed to them by their parents, should approve of ending private inheritance.

Market devotees should also recognize that the accumulation of wealth distorts markets by reducing competition. Inheritance taxes can be used to improve the operation of markets through programs that encourage competition and, thereby, increase market efficiency.

Obama has recently become wealthy. What has that done to his public policy? He is saying, “Tax my income. Tax my wealth when I die. Use the money to create programs that benefit the most needy among us.” Isn’t that a profoundly Christian message, even if Marx would agree?

If you think people working together for their communities is a bad idea, then don’t vote for Obama. If you think opposing unnecessary wars is a bad idea, don’t vote for Obama.

However, don’t be fooled by those who call Obama a communist and fail to recognize that Obama’s inspiration is Christian.

JESSE CHANLEY JR..

MESA

Check your facts

After reading Jeanett Nickels’ letter (“Palin’s record exposed,” Thursday), I had many questions about Palin’s past record.

During this presidential election, smears from both sides are getting numerous and things are starting to get ugly. I recommend visiting a Web site found at www.factcheck.org.

There is a section devoted to political smears. When adding left-wing or right-wing Web sites to your Internet favorites list, you can add the fact check site right next to them. This will save you from embarrassment when passing on falsehoods that are no more than rumors. No one would like rumors spread about themselves.

As mayor, Palin did not ban any books from the town library. According to the fact check site, Palin has not pushed for teaching creationism in Alaska schools. She has said that students should be allowed to “debate both sides” of the evolution question, but she also said creationism “doesn’t have to be part of the curriculum.” I say, ”What is so wrong about encouraging debate?”

DAVE BROWN

MESA

Just who is typical family?

A John McCain staffer was quoted as saying Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin’s family, with an unmarried and pregnant daughter, represents an “American family.” If that is true, how do you characterize my family, with not-pregnant 16-year-old daughters? Are we un-American? And if, by having unprotected sex with her boyfriend, Bristol Palin christens her family as “real” and “just like the rest of us,” I will be darned sure, when I tuck my chaste 16-year-old daughters in tonight, to tell them just what deviant misfits they are.

SCOTT B. NELSON

PHOENIX

Patterson misses point

Tom Patterson’s Aug. 31 commentary (“Obama’s 'fairness:’ Taking your money,” Opinion 2) contained the delicious quote, “A tax system based on some politician’s notion of fairness is dangerous nonsense.”

How right he is. Our current malaise or recession is directly related to the past eight years of wild spending by Republicans, cutting taxes for the rich while not paying for the wars they decided to fight. High oil prices are directly tied to the billions of dollars we have handed to large corporations that just so happen to be large contributors to the current administration.

Those billions have weakened the dollar and caused great pain to all working Americans.

We clearly have not learned the lessons of the past. You cannot fight a war without paying the piper. If you postpone the cost, you will feel the crunch of rising inflation and falling wages.

It is time to elect real leaders who will put our fiscal house in order.

MICHAEL MILLER

PHOENIX

CLIMATE CHANGE

Emissions in Arizona growing

Carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions have been growing dramatically in Arizona. Our state’s emissions of carbon dioxide, a leading contributor to global warming, have grown by 464 percent since 1960. In Arizona, some of the most serious consequences of global warming are how it increases drought, increases wildfires, and is likely to cause severe pollution alerts and heat-related deaths, illness and disease.

Through the Western Climate Initiative, Arizona has a chance to lead the way with real global warming solutions. But we need to make sure that the initiative sets a course of action that is both aggressive and practical. As it finalizes its recommendations, the initiative and Gov. Janet Napolitano should adopt a plan that does several things. It should cover all pollution sources, allow for the auction of excess-pollution permits, invest the revenue from pollution permits on clean energy solutions, have strong standards for pollution offsets, and be enforceable, transparent and free from loopholes.

DAVID ROGERS

ENVIRONMENT ARIZONA

PHOENIX

IMMIGRATION

Use radar to stop crossings

Why can’t we build a “virtual fence” to detect illegal border crossings, especially at washes and rivers? At Heathrow International Airport in London, a twin radar system can spot a spool of thread lying on the 2.5-mile runway! Heathrow’s system has also been installed at Vancouver International and Dubai International airports and at the Warwick airport in Rhode Island. Similar systems have protected the Yuma Marine Airbase for years.

Is the bureaucracy in Michael Chernoff’s Homeland Security the problem? Is prime contractor Boeing the problem? Or is it politics as usual?

FRANK WELSH

MESA

MARICOPA COUNTY SCHOOLS

Just pay the teachers

I don’t know all the acronyms, the funds, the injunctions, the major players, or the winding webs of political brinksmanship that are currently at play between the Maricopa County Regional School District and other government offices. To be honest, at this point, I don’t care!

All the accolades of being a team player, a beacon of altruism, or knowing that “I’m doing it for the students” are at this point insufficient. I work each day with a team of dedicated professionals who have committed their lives to the rehabilitation of society’s “throw-aways,” and all the pats on the back will not pay our mortgages, put gas in our cars, or food on our tables. We are not throw-away teachers. Salaries need to be paid and our health insurance needs to be functional!

I don’t care what needs to happen — make it happen. Work Saturdays. Stay late. I don’t even care if you have to work for free. I mean, after all — we are.

JOYLYN REIDHEAD

TEACHER, DURANGO JUVENILE DETENTION

TEMPE

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