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Letters to the editor

March 10, 2005

Congress watches out for itself, not us


To the editor:

The members of Congress have approved the use of taxpayers' dollars to finance a generous pension plan for themselves. They also voted themselves a $4,000 pay raise for 2005, which will be about $330 more each month.

I get $14 more each month and pay $52.29 more on my supplemental insurance each month. Medicare is paying less on medical bills and that is why I pay more than $300 per month. The politicians enjoy a taxpayer-funded health-care plan that they get to keep when they retire. Members of Congress should serve the people and be good stewards of America's finances.

Under Congress' pension plan, they can reap more than $1 million in taxpayer-funded pensions. They even voted to give themselves guaranteed retirement pensions at age 50, after only 20 years of service. We can't get our little retirement until we are 62 or 65. They get a cost of living (COLA) that makes ours look like a little bitty one. We deserve a larger COLA, because of higher Medicare premiums and higher cost increases on all our bills.

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It is so unfair to the people who are retired and depending on Social Security for a living. I personally don't think Congress deserved another raise or larger pension.

We elected them to represent us, not themselves. Social Security is not the problem. Congress is, for reckless spending and greed on themselves. We are the victims and our Social Security has been earned and paid for by taxes withheld from our paychecks. Congress uses our money to pay for programs for its own political gain to get re-elected.

Even politicians who are convicted of a felony and forced to leave Congress are allowed to collect a taxpayer-financed pension. Congress has abandoned its job of being the servant of the voters. Instead, greed and huge COLAs and lavish health benefits for themselves has taken over. They have no worries or restraints. They need to stop the abuse of our tax dollars. Their pensions and selfish perks cost Americans a fortune. They need to make sure we the people have our Social Security retirement benefits that President Roosevelt promised us protected. FDR's vision was for a stable, secure fund that would provide a guaranteed pension for every American. Come on, Congress, change your style of living lavishly.

Anna Lee Burker
Sharpsburg




Act of heroism isn't surprising


To the editor:

I just finished reading the front page article in The Herald-Mail about David Norford saving the children from the burning building. This action on David's part does not surprise me at all.

I have known him since he was a small child and he has always been caring and ready to help others. He is truly a wonderful person. I hope he is selected as Washington County's Sheriff Deputy of the Year. He went beyond the call of duty, which is typical for David. I am so proud of him.

Rita Escobar
Hagerstown




Congress subtracts more than it adds


To the editor:

I would like to know how people can be put in office and come up with the brainstorms that they do. They steal all of the Social Security money from the ones who worked for it and bring all these foreigners here and hand everything to them, including Social Security benefits for doing nothing.

Do our representatives get something out of it? We get a raise of $2 to $3 a month and they take $9 to $15 for our insurance. They sit in an office and get paid all this money to sleep.

Congress just gave itself a raise to $158,000 per year.

Members of Congress get paid $1,519 per day to work just 104 days a year.

Congress is raiding the Social Security trust fund to pay for its wasteful spending. The career politicians would like us to be "fat, dumb and happy," so that we shut up, pay our taxes and leave the decisions to them.

You and I need a government that works for us. Find out how you can make Washington listen.

Emmert C. Stauffer
Waynesboro, Pa.




Pastor Leiter a good man


To the editor:

Pastor Brian Leiter was a very good man. He was always there for you and he would help you with your problems. He was a great husband to Sandy, too.

Anytime you would walk through the church doors, he would have a smile on his face. Also, if we would have any problems at church, he would straighten them out. He would sings songs with the kids like, "This Little Light of Mine" and his favorite and ours, "1-800 Heaven."

I know that right now he is looking down on us. Pastor Brian was the one who baptized me. Pastor Brian would always give and he would not want anything in return. May he rest in peace with God.

Amanda Reese
Hagerstown

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