Letters to the Editor - Feb. 1

February 01, 2012

Can nation stand any more hope and change?

To the editor:

A recent letter writer stated that each time he relived Colin Powell’s speech justifying our Iraq intervention, he was “revolted by the hypocrisy that my own government would initiate on an international stage.” The only thing revolting is the notion that the writer is so ill-informed.

In fact, every intelligence agency in the world believed Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction and said so. He used deadly gas on his own people, and he proudly claimed to have WMD. But the myth remains, or should I say the lie remains, that the Bush administration failed to tell the truth about the need for the Iraq invasion.

I think the people who perpetuate this lie do so knowingly and with some measure of enthusiasm, confident that the media won’t challenge this absurdity. Democratic senior leadership all read the same intelligence and came to the same conclusion for invasion. The reluctance of the mainstream media to challenge the falsehoods of the left-wingers is stunning. Now that we are in “campaign mode,” it will only be the more noteworthy.

For instance, when George Bush took office, the national debt was $5.2 trillion; when he left it was $10.1 trillion. During his eight years, we funded two wars, pricey prescription drug legislation for seniors, “No Child Left Behind” legislation, $50 billion to Africa to fight AIDS, Katrina, etc. — and, oh yes, the World Trade Center 9/11 attacks occurred.

Obama finished 30 months of “hope and change,” the national debt pushing $16 trillion, but the media allows him to get away with trekking across the country braying that the Bush administration mired us in overwhelming debt.

False political rhetoric, too voluminous to recount here, will probably result in the election of the current president yet again. I am not sure we can stand much more hope and change.

Nancy C. Boyer

Let’s tax unearned income on a sliding scale

To the editor:

The term “unearned income” has always troubled me.

Let’s say I put up $100,000 to start a company. I stand a very good chance of losing that $100,000. Let’s assume that things go great and I go public and keep 1 million shares of stock. Those shares produce $100,000 a year of income. Is that unearned income? It would seem to me that I earned it; after all, I put up $100,000.

Now, let’s assume I don’t start a company. Instead I have work earnings of $100,000 a year. I pay higher taxes on my income than the investor pays on his income. I pay the higher rate and continue to work and pay until I am 65, retire and get Social Security. At that point, neither the investor, getting his capital gains, nor I, getting my Social Security, are working for our respective incomes. Why is my Social Security treated as earned income but his as unearned?

Why do we even have something called unearned income?  Isn’t income income? And why is it taxed at a lower rate?

Why don’t we tax so-called unearned income on a sliding scale? That scale could be based on unearned income as a percentage of total income.

With total income less than $200,000, there would be no tax on unearned income. For total income greater than $200,000, the tax rate on unearned income would vary based on percentage of total income that is unearned. If unearned income is 5 percent of total income, the rate on unearned income would be 5 percent; if it is 6 percent of total income, the rate would be 6 percent. This sliding scale would continue until a maximum rate of 30 percent.

It’s not perfect, but it’s a starting point to think of something better than what we have now.

Cliff Lane
Black Rock

Thanks to e-recycling program participants

To the editor:

The MLK Day E-Recycling Program collected almost 10,000 pounds of electronic equipment and diverted it from entering the landfill. Volunteer Washington County would like to congratulate and thank everyone involved.

Volunteer Washington County would like to especially recognize our business partners who made the MLK Day E-Recycling Program possible: Freedom Electronics Recycling, Horizon Goodwill Industries, Penske Truck Rental, Washington County Government and Washington County Public Schools. VWC would also like to thank the 94 residents who did the responsible thing by recycling their electronic equipment rather than throwing it out.

MLK Day is about honoring the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. through service to others. I was asked, “What does recycling have to do with volunteerism and service to others?”  You might not think of recycling as an important aspect of volunteerism, but it is. Through recycling, it is possible to protect the environment and decrease pollution, which is a tremendous service to future generations.

Bernadette Wagner, co-director
Volunteer Washington County

Adults seeking higher education deserve fair shake

To the editor:

In 2001, President Bush created a law that says no child should be left behind. It is a thoughtful law, but what about adults who struggle to earn an education?

Many adults struggle to have the same education because of the high standards that most schools recommend. Students who attend class and are willing to participate in their academics should be able to get some source of recognition for their accomplishments.

So, together, we need to help these individuals so more adults can get help in furthering higher education and being able to get better employment placing.

Christina Moats

The Herald-Mail Articles