Tax, trust up in smoke
The tax increase for cigarettes failed in Missouri for a good reason (11-7, A4, “Voters say no to tax hike”).
I voted for the stadium complex and am still enjoying the free parking and the rolling roof.
I voted for allowing gambling and was assured that the money would go to education. It didn’t help much.
I voted for regulation of dog breeders in the state. It passed and was immediately overturned by the state legislature.
To be very blunt, the legislature lies about almost everything.
I voted against the tax because I simply don’t believe the money will go for education.
Latino vote, Obama
President Barack Obama won a second term with a significant 71 percent of the Latino vote despite Obama’s failure to implement the comprehensive immigration reform he promised.
Loyal Latinos will now monitor Obama’s immigration policies and the expected Latina appointments for his new administration.
Religious right snooze
After being an average Republican for 70 years or so, I was betrayed by George W. Bush when he hijacked the party for the religious right and eventually the tea party.
I have become anti-extremist no matter what stripes or names they have.
Extreme Christians are not too different from extreme Muslims or extreme whatever, only in degree.
What bothers me is that the Republicans are trying to cater to (or pimp) the religious right and the tea party in ways that contradict the principles of each.
They are anti-contraceptives, anti-women’s rights and anti-gay as if God’s word specifically bans these. I feel a Christian group should promote what God does advocate, such as the ill and infirm (health care), the poor and downtrodden (the 47 percent) and the hungry (school lunches and food stamps).
The tea party is opposed to all of these “doles,” which Jesus “harps on” throughout his Gospels. Where is the religious right’s righteous indignation in all these contradictions of goals?
Is anybody awake out there?
Morality losses in U.S.
Taking advantage of a cashier’s distraction, John took $2 from the cash register. Jane behind him lied about her son’s age and paid $2 less.
Even though John’s behavior is against the law and Jane’s isn’t, there is a moral equivalence. By thieving or by cheating, each stole $2 from the company.
Stealing votes from the urns is against the law. Sending viral emails to gain votes through lies isn’t. The moral equivalence is clear.
By thieving or by cheating, both are stealing votes.
I prefer the first method in both examples. There is no chance of self-deception. The perpetrators know they are wrong and cannot rationalize that it is not stealing because “everybody does it.”
In my birth country, the incumbents took votes from the urns. They knew they were thieves and couldn’t brag of free elections.
In my United States, millions were spent to indoctrinate and misinform with outright lies.
To “steal” my vote with lies before I vote or by thieving after I vote is morally equivalent. The former sadly allows for self-deception and rationalization.
Helping those in need
For all of you conservative-thinking folks who firmly believe our government should not be in the business of helping the less fortunate, now is the time to act.
Let your elected representatives know immediately to keep your money from going to the many people and communities devastated by Superstorm Sandy.
As your leadership has indicated many times in the past, the government can’t afford to be giving away money. It puts us further into debt.
We’ve got to quit handing out doles or we must raise taxes. And we sure won’t raise taxes.
Frankly, I’m glad to be fortunate enough to have to pay taxes and, further, think we should help those in need. Not only in the Sandy-affected areas but in our own neighborhoods as well.
Richard R. Berner
Include men in ‘politics’
Because women’s reproductive rights have become a political issue, then I think condoms and erectile dysfunction drugs should also be part of that equation.
Action against Libya
Recent suggestions that we punish Libya are disturbing. It implies the use of military forces in some sort of combat.
My question is: How many American troops are we willing to kill in this effort and how long can we expect it to go on? Our tolerance for casualties and duration are notoriously poor.
Because political motivations run rampant in situations like this, I’d like to suggest a method ensuring a high likelihood of no American casualties, a brief duration with an assured effect, not only on Libya but any Middle Eastern nation that supports terrorists.
Using cruise missiles, attack the two to three largest power stations in the country, ensuring repairs will take three to five years. The 40 to 50 percent loss of electricity would devastate any economy.
Also, have our Navy attack a port with offshore bombardment and cruise missiles. The loss of a seaport would affect the country’s ability to bring in resources and replacements.
Careful planning would ensure U.S. forces aren’t harmed. Apply Gen. George Patton’s dictum: “War is not for you to die gloriously for your country but to make the other SOB die for his.”
James H. Tiller III
Billy Graham’s ad
In a Nov. 4 full-page ad in The Kansas City Star and other newspapers, Billy Graham urged voters in the election on Tuesday to vote for candidates who will base their decisions on biblical principles and will protect the sanctity of life and support the biblical definition of marriage between a man and a woman.
He makes no mention of any need to protect and support political values fundamental to a democratic form of government like ours, such as freedom of choice, freedom of association and equal protection under the law. He also doesn’t refer to Jesus’ mandate to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, take care of the sick, visit the prisoner and welcome the stranger, or Jesus’ caveat regarding the accumulation of wealth.
I hope that Dr. Graham would consider these values to be at least as important for a candidate to embrace as those he enumerated in his ad.
Drop Electoral College
Now can we get a consensus on getting rid of the Electoral College so every vote will count? I knew before I went to the polls on Tuesday that my vote would not matter because it was masked by the statewide majority vote.
And why must all of a state’s electoral votes be cast for a candidate who gets 60 percent of the state’s popular vote? That candidate should get only the electoral votes earned by his/her popular vote.
This archaic method of electing our president perpetuates lower voter turnout, and that is much worse than any voter fraud that has been uncovered. Our country pushes other countries to become democracies, but we have this gaping hole in ours.
The United States should be setting the example.
Smoking clouds festivals
I wonder what law allows smoking at a festival now that most of Jackson County is smoke-free.
At one festival this year, I walked around the many areas that served food, and there were many people smoking.
The beer garden was designated a smoking area except for two tents. And in my three hours at the festival, someone was smoking in both tents the entire time, and two of them were smoking cigars.
Why wasn’t the area smoke-free, with smoking tents in the back? And, yes, the food courts are on city streets, but why not designate these areas as non-smoking?
If smoking is allowed only in designated areas at the stadiums, is there a law that allows a waiver for festivals, and if there is, isn’t it time to repeal the law?
Now, I don’t smoke, but shouldn’t the law be uniform, and why wasn’t the smoking area law enforced with the same zeal as the alcohol law?
John M. Fox