Editors Note: The following letter ran Dec. 7 with an editing error. A corrected version follows.
Shame on retailers
What has happened to the values we used to treasure during the Thanksgiving time of year? Now we have retailers opening at 8 p.m. or even midnight on Thanksgiving. It is all about greed. To all those employees of companies who were taken away from the family celebration to go deal with outrageous, mean and sometimes drunk people, I commend you. It is sad you had to miss dinner and the festivities because you have to go to bed at 4 p.m. because you have to work at midnight.
I refuse to join the mayhem that the crowds bring on Friday. I realize it is not the consumer that is at blame here. Open and they will come philosophy has run rampant at the retail corporate level and seems to be getting worse. Plan on being open on Christmas? Again, might as well. Youve robbed your employees of one holiday why not take them all away in the name of profit and greed?
It is time to say, Enough, stop the greed. This must stop so we can get back to what the real meanings of the holidays are. I am not talking about 50-inch televisions, either.
GARY ELLIOTT, Meridian
The election is history; its time for negotiations
Regardless of your political persuasion, now is a good time for all of us to contact our congressional representatives, congressional leaders and President Obama in Washington. Tell them to quit playing with our countrys economy. Tell them the time for political campaigning and grandstanding is over the election was several weeks ago! Tell them to be responsible and get down to serious budget negotiations. Tell them to do whats good for the country, and that (of course) is to get our countrys fiscal affairs resolved.
You can easily message these people by going to their websites. A Google search does the trick.
Dont forget its your future, its your childrens future and its your money.
DAVE CHURCHILL, Boise
Republicans only seek to hurt the middle class
We warned the Republicans that if they dont start working for those of us who hired (elected) them, instead of themselves and their cronies, they would be fired. We gave them another chance. Now, they are still trying to better themselves at our expense: They will be accepting a raise the previous Congress approved for them wait, they were the previous Congress.
Per Kaiser research, the Romneycare medical plan would have increased all seniors (in the middle class) medical expenses by a minimum of $200 per month. The Republicans supported this.
We have been told by the rest of the world there is a fiscal cliff looming, which will negatively affect our (middle class) wallets if nothing is done. The Republicans are supporting this and want nothing done unless it negatively affects the middle class.
We have been told the Republicans do not want those making over $200,000 annually to pay more taxes. I personally know no one with this income. But, the average pay in Congress is $174,000, plus up to an additional 21 percent, or $26,100, from other sources, for a total of $200,100. No wonder theyre against it!
DAVID B. SHIPMAN, Boise
Repeal the tax cuts for the ultra-rich
By a wide margin, Americans feel Bush-era tax cuts for the super wealthy should be terminated. These unnecessary tax cuts for the ultra-rich are political corruption plain and simple, favors for a small but powerful demographic that trades millions in campaign donations in exchange for tax cuts and loopholes.
Back in Eisenhowers day, following World War II, the super-rich paid a 90-percent top tax rate. He didnt get run out of office, and nobody accused him of being a socialist. We built the U.S. interstate highway system, our universities thrived, technological development surged and business boomed, bringing prosperity to millions of middle class working Americans. And the unemployment rate was way lower than it is now.
Lets raise taxes on the very rich beyond Clintons 39.6 percent top rate. Scare talk about a fiscal cliff notwithstanding, lets cut the military pork, too. Do this, and we can pay off our debts, provide health care and quality education for all, and develop real alternatives to oil and coal.
Idahos two senators and two congressmen should say where they stand on continuing tax cuts for the rich. How do their positions serve the U.S. economy and the people of Idaho?
CHRIS NORDEN, Moscow
The fiscal cliff. What is the big deal? So weve been hearing about how bad the economy is going to be if there isnt a compromise, but will it really?
This nation as a whole is driven on fear. Can we please stop with the media-influenced hype and the speculation on what could happen, and truly be presented with the facts? Is that too much to ask? Is it possible to see a news article that gives Americans hope and doesnt drive fear of the future into our hearts? What I hate about todays world is that people are hardly able to formulate their own opinions without being influenced in mostly negative ways by the media, by politicians, and by their friends or families.
The fiscal cliff has simply become another topic for distortion by the media. I say we let it play out and then see how bad it really is.
PRESTON BLACKER, Boise
Obama is to blame
Regarding letters from John Love and Andrea Witmer (Dec. 4). They complain of disinformation and then present a whole litany of disinformation. Theres not enough space to dispute all their claims. This president has spent more money than all previous presidents combined. Despite his promises of jobs, halving the debt and balancing the budget, the budget is in ongoing trillion-dollar deficits. Debt is up almost 70 percent, unemployment is up and an extra 17 million are on food stamps. He boasts of saving GM, but topped up union pension and health funds ... and stuck it to preferred stockholders. The original problems of GM went unchanged. They will end up back in trouble. His buddies at GE pay no taxes at all.
The family may have had fewer vacation days (not counting the 160 days of golf?) but at 10 times the cost. Bush vacationed at his ranch, these guys go to Africa (separate planes), Hawaii, etc.
Michelle has 20 assistants, Barbara had three. Blame the rich? Take all their money and property, it would only cover half of his annual budget deficit, then who do you blame? China, when they call in their loans?
BOB JILLINGS, Nampa
In a fair fight, based on reason, the right wins
I like a fair fight but often in politics this does not happen. Unfairness dominates the political left in their attack on the right by the use of deceptive straw men. Here are examples:
1. They call us climate change deniers. This is plain silly. No one I know denies the climate changes and has done so since the beginning of the planet. The truth is some of us are skeptics about panic from the left.
2. War on women by denying women contraceptives. This was crazy talk but the deception worked because of support from the media. The right is especially happy to see the left use birth control.
3. The left has a couple dozen words that, when used by the right, are supposed to make them dogwhistling racists, yet there is nothing they cannot use because they are so righteous.
4. When the right disagrees with the left it is hate speech, but when they disagree with us it is merely the loving expression of their opinion.
This is insane thinking. If we could discuss with reason, the right would always prevail.
JOSEPH J. DEWEY, Boise
Let the districts deal with school reform
Hearing the governor and others talk about education reform for the next legislative session makes me nervous. Education reform should not come from the state Legislature; education is a local matter. The role of the state government is not to dictate reform. Rather the states role should be one of encouraging and facilitating local districts and schools to institute the reforms that people in local areas want.
In 2013, the politicians need to take a holiday from education reform. Let the districts and the people work on it for a year, and then see what needs to be done at the state level. The people need a voice in education reform and that voice is best expressed and heard at the local level.
JOHN OWENS, Boise
Expensive rib injury
All the talk about medical bills, it is amazing. I fell and injured a rib, went to the ER in such pain. I told them I had no insurance. The lady that checked us in said we could make payments, which would probably be around $1,000 depending on the tests the doctor ordered.
After the morphine drip, I felt really great. They did X-rays, ultrasound, blood work and CT scan with contrast. They said nothing showed up, but it was probably a hairline fracture of the rib. The doctor never even touched me.
I got a bill for almost $7,000, plus a doctor bill for almost $1,000. The hospital wants it paid off in two years. I told them I would make payments, but could not pay it in two years. My son had a hernia operation that cost $8,000. Why would they order all these tests when they knew I had no insurance? Big puzzle to me.
I agree. Lower the medical costs. Please.
D. SUE THOMAS, Boise