Letters to editor: April 20 - East Valley Tribune: Opinion

Letters to editor: April 20

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Posted: Tuesday, April 20, 2010 1:21 pm | Updated: 3:26 am, Sat Oct 8, 2011.

God is not guiding Obama; Obama is

OBAMA: God is not guiding Obama; Obama is

A while back, a letter printed in the Tribune claimed that it’s possible that Obama is being guided by God in this "economic crisis". I think that is pure racdrops.

Here’s why:

Would God tell Obama to try K.S.M. in a civilian court, like a common criminal, instead of a military tribunal? (Fact: K.S.M. is the mastermind behind 9/11, which killed 3,000 innocent Americans)

Would God tell Obama to hang out at an unrepentant terrorist’s house?

Would God tell Obama to sit in a radical man’s church for 20 years? (The one who said

"G-D America, only he used the real words) .

Would God tell Obama to close Guantanamo, a prison where very dangerous terrorists are being held? Read: terrorists, not man-caused disaster makers.

Would God tell Obama to shove this unconstitutional health care bill down our throats? (Very few people have actually read the 2,000-plus page bill)

Would God tell Obama to break multiple promises he made during his campaign? (No earmarks, no lobbyists, etc.)

Would God tell Obama to build hotel-like prisons? (There's one in Chicago; I've seen pictures of it.)

No, He wouldn’t. God would not tell Obama to do any of those things. Therefore, I do not believe that God is guiding Obama. Obama is guiding Obama.

I believe that we are fighting something much more serious than just a war on terror. It should really be called the war on evil. Terrorism is evil, there is no doubt about that. Anyone who opposes this war on evil can only be evil themselves. I am not kidding.

Spencer Anderson, Mesa

GILBERT: Town employees are not low-paid

You’ve probably heard that Gilbert’s Town employees are among the lowest paid in the valley. Indeed Steve Urie, candidate for State Representative, LD-22, and former Gilbert Town Council member, has lamented many times, “Why is the Council looking at balancing the budget on the backs of employees? They work hard and do more with less.”

To whom are these Gilbert salary comparisons being made? Not to Gilbert citizens working in the private sector, or to anyone working in the private sector. Rather, municipalities compare themselves to other municipalities. This has caused compensation packages for government employees throughout Arizona to spiral upward as one municipality leverages against another to raise salaries and benefits.

So, exactly what is the average pay for a salaried Gilbert Town employee? What is it for the hourly employee? According to Collin Dewitt, Gilbert’s interim town manager, the annual mean salary for a full-time salaried Gilbert Town employee is $81,600. This does not include the benefits package, overtime pay, part-time employees, or contract employees. Nor does it include the higher salaries of the town manager, full time municipal judges or the town clerk. The annual mean salary for full-time hourly employees is $51,430.

Gilbert employees also receive a benefits package consisting of 80 percent paid employee and family health insurance; 80 percent paid employee and family dental insurance; 100 percent paid life insurance (up to $100k, depending on salary); also 100 percent paid short-term disability. There is also a long-term disability benefit. Most employees also receive contributions to Social Security as well as the Arizona State Retirement Fund, enabling government employees to retire at 50-80 percent pay after 20 years of employment.

If these government employees represent the “lowest salaries in the Valley,” how much more are the other Valley government employees earning?

Does it make sense for the average private sector Gilbert citizen and business owner, who has been hit much harder financially, to continue paying higher taxes in order to protect government employees' pay and to nourish an expanding government? Vote No on Prop 406, and send a strong message to our elected officials to be fiscally responsible, and to become more organizationally efficient.

Anita Christy, Gilbert

ECONOMIC REFORM: Stop big banks

I am writing to urge our senators to pass strong reforms and to stop the Wall Street lobbyists from spending millions to water down these financial reforms. Reckless behavior by big banks, mortgage lenders and credit card companies have cost millions of Americans their jobs, their retirement savings and their financial well-being. Strong reforms currently before the Senate would hold big banks accountable and crack down on abuses by credit card companies and the mortgage lending industry. Unfortunately, there is an army of lobbyists on Capitol Hill fighting to protect the bonuses, loopholes and sweetheart deals that some Wall Street banks enjoy while millions of Americans lose their jobs and savings.

Americans deserve to have their senators fighting for the working families who play by the rules and not support the big banks who created the financial mess this country is in. Senators must make sure that any final bill protects states' rights, requires that investment advice be based on the needs of the client -- not the financial institution -- and provides consumers with a watchdog to protect their financial security. Please do the right and honorable thing to strengthen our country and allow all of the citizens of this great country to live out their dreams. Bring back the middle class and dignity for all.

Ellen Sobie, Mesa

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