Letters to the editor

01/28/2014 4:54 PM

01/28/2014 4:54 PM

Blame Obama

We are all familiar with trickle-down economics theory — that a richer upper class will eventually trickle down to the lower classes. The implementation of this theory has cost several presidents their re-election.

We are currently in the process of trickle-up economic theory. Hoping all the poor and numerous unemployed will eventually trickle up to the rest of the population. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi was quoted saying unemployment checks stimulate the economy.

Our president cannot raise taxes on the rich or give the tax money away fast enough. Our unemployment is close to 7 percent.

Welfare rolls have swollen. The only way unemployment drops is when Americans give up looking for work.

Food stamp recipients are growing at a lightning fast rate. I hope this president does irreparable harm to the Democratic Party.

Joe Lavender

Lenexa Death of tobacco

Typewriters. Rotary phones. Cassette tapes.

These have all become obsolete in the last 50 years. It’s time to add something else : the death and disease caused by tobacco.

This month marks the 50th anniversary of the first U.S. Surgeon General’s Report on Smoking and Health. Since then, we’ve cut smoking rates by more than half among Johnson County youth and adults, and now have among the lowest smoking rates in Kansas.

Our community has showed great leadership in bringing smoke-free public places to the state. We have made much progress, but there is still work to be done.

In recent years there has been an explosion of other tobacco products — new forms of chewing tobacco, e-cigarettes, little cigars and dissolvable products that resemble candy or toothpicks. These products are heavily marketed to youths, are equally dangerous, and should be subject to the same taxes, regulations and prevention efforts.

By doing what we know works, we can cut smoking rates to less than 10 percent within 10 years, protect everyone from secondhand smoke, and ultimately eliminate the death and disease caused by tobacco. It shouldn’t take another 50 years to end the tobacco epidemic for good.

Lougene Marsh

Director

Johnson County Department

of Health and Environment

Olathe Adjust KanCare

We all know the protected income level, of the home and community based services waiver in Kansas needs to be raised, but how? When the state turned over most of KanCare (Medicaid) to the three health care providers, did that also shift the responsibility of the spend-down to them?

If this is the case, why can we not legislate changes now, that would take effect in 2015? Since Kansas relinquished control and no longer has a financial responsibility, it wouldn’t cost taxpayers a penny.

Gary Carson

Gardner Nessel columns

Over the years I’ve sampled all of The Star’s Johnson County columnists. A few are/were perfectly fine writers, but their choice of subject matter rarely draws me in.

The sole exception is Sarah Smith Nessel. I’ve always looked forward to her commentary.

With a quirky, yet down-to-earth viewpoint, she gives us her take on the passing parade flowing around her, expressed clearly and succinctly, with a felicitous phrase or a fine skewering added for good measure.

If she ever finds the time to return to a weekly column, I hope you welcome her back with open arms. I sure will.

Talis Bergmanis

Fairway Vote for Nessel

In the 913 section of The Star, Sarah Smith Nessel represented the voice of reason in the suburban wasteland. Yes, I live in this wasteland, but I’m glad when I find any voices of reason around me.

Yes, I shop, eat out, etc., in this wasteland, but I also exercise, volunteer, vote and advocate for a better life here, where not everyone is as fortunate to live La Dolce Vita.

I’m sure there are many of us here, and Sarah gave our voice a public forum. One can only hope and pray that her voice opened other peoples’ eyes as well. Now, who will take her place?

My husband and I will surely watch for Sarah’s name on the ballot in the near future.

Kat Berger

Overland Park Check voting records

With approval ratings nearing single digits, Republicans are counting on traditional low voter turnout in the 2014 mid-term elections. To help them along, Republican controlled states, including Kansas, have enacted new voter identification laws that are now being overturned in the courts.

Kansas has reversed all of its earlier laws that made it easier to vote and instead are trying to make it harder to vote. As with all new Republican voter ID laws, it’s being done under the guise of voter fraud.

The only problem is that they have been unable to prove many actual cases of in-person voter fraud. The elections are a long way off, but I urge voters to look at how their elected officials actually voted on legislation.

Congressman Kevin Yoder will tell you he didn’t want to vote on the government shutdown, which lasted 16 days, but he did anyway. The truth is, it’s not what they say, it’s how they actually vote.

Gov. Sam Brownback promised a huge growth in jobs, which has yet to materialize. His grand experiment has hurt education, the middle class and the poor but paid off well for the wealthy.

It’s the actual voting records that tell the truth.

Karen Lane

Overland Park

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