Employ proven methods

To the editor:

High drama of the sort we hear on “fair-and-balanced” Fox “News” isn’t necessarily factual.

A recent letter writer advocates continued support for the wealthiest among us. Second District U.S. Rep. John Kline, R-Burnsville, voted for the deal that avoided the fiscal cliff. Still, cushy features that take care of the top 2 percent of income earners were “balanced” by only temporarily extended unemployment benefits and continued food assistance for the very poor. No increases in minimum wage were proposed, even as many of the poorest work several jobs for minimal wages.

Fans of Grover Norquist, like the letter-writer, want to continue the recession by advocating cuts in benefits to the victims of our economy, along with unneeded “help” for upper income recipients. Who spends money faster in our hurting economy, people who must use their scarce resources to feed and clothe families, or capital gains recipients who can stash their treasure offshore? Money spent locally supports the local economy, which might result in more local employment. Citing spurious data like the myth that the bottom 50 percent, or 47 percent, of earners pay no taxes, insults our intelligence.

Meanwhile, those who want to continue the recession will shortly have another chance to attack benefits to low-income wage earners. Proposals to raise the debt ceiling will be an opportunity to yet again damage the poorest among us, and the economy as well. We’ve trashed the poor and coddled the rich for too long now. It’s time we employ more proven methods.

Betty Fedde
Eagan

  • TAXPAYER28

    Betty, if you want “fair” taxation every citizen would recieve a tax bill of the $ amount.
    this idea of progressive taxation has lead to corperate welfare, and social welfare to no end.
    there is just one problem with it really, you eventually run out of people to loot.
    go Galt ;-)

  • Rosie from Rosemount

    Betty, your lack of understanding of how a healthy economy operates is only trumped by your obvious hatred of those who voice opinions contrary to yours. Your generalizations are unsurprising. NEWSFLASH: 96% of the wealthy DO NOT “stash” their wealth offshore! You can go to the IRS website and research this, but I doubt you will because then you would know the truth and would henceforth be unable to make such a proclamation.

    As far as helpting the destitute, I have repeatedly declared that as a society we should provide an adequate safety net to those needing food, clothing, and shelter as well as providing educational opportunities. However, if by “help” you mean providing taxpayer money to those people who use such to buy a smartphone and subscribe to its services, or who use taxpayer cash to buy a widescreen TV, or purchase potato chips instead of potatos, yeah, I definitely got a problem with that. Or if you mean taxpayers helping those who made very bad decisions about mortgages and their ability to repay a mortgage, or using a second mortgage to buy a boat (Do you own a boat? My family does not), and then lost their house, yeah, I also have a problem with that. All that TARP money, all of that stimulus money, all of that hurricane relief money: Where do you think it comes from, Betty? Who pays the most taxes and who uses the most resources provided by the tax-payer funded government? Frankly, I am not rich, but if banks failed, I would not, yet my hard earned money went to “fixing” the problem. I was against TARP and the other crazy federal programs which have done little but cost much.

    Finally, those Americans without good means are the traditional recipients of trillions of dollars of tax-payer provided entitlements over the past few decades, and obviously providing such programs does not work because even though we spend more and more taxpayer money to try to “fix” their situation, more and more of the population receives welfare-type entitlements. So you and I agree: Let’s stop employing the same tactics and move to proven methods. Giving money away has obviously been proved to not work, so it is surely time to go in another direction.

    • wageslave

      Is this a critique of programs for the aged (SS, Medicare, Medicaid) or of programs for working-age people (such as TANF, food stamps, Medicaid and unemployment)?

      Americans “without good means” get a lot of government money, all right, and so do Americans WITH good means.

      Surely you know that programs for the aged are busting the bank a lot faster than those other ones.

      Didn’t we reform “welfare” (typically known then as AFDC, now as TANF) back in the ’90s to put a time limit on it and attach work or work-search requirements? Isn’t that progress?

      Who are the “they” whose situations we are trying to “fix?” Alleged freeloaders or people who get old?

  • TheLip

    RFR, why always with the personal questions? (Do you own a boat) what business is it of yours if Betty or anyone on this board owns a boat.
    “your obvious hatred of those who voice opinions contrary to yours” you have alot of sand printing a statement like that. You bring up a lot of good points in your response but sully them with this kind of nonsense.

    • Jan Dobson

      1) TheLip might want to familiarize him/herself with the concept of a “rhetorical question.” Rosie’s question is clearly rhetorical. Purely by the way, I don’t own a boat, either.

      2) The English language is quirky in that “you” can mean an individual OR a group of individuals. As I interpret Rosie’s rhetorical boat question, it could be rephrased as, “How many of you own a boat?”

      Both of the above points are miniscule nits to pick, but it was TheLip that initiating the nitpicking process. Nits left unpicked have a tendency to multiply. Rapidly.

      • TheLip

        JD, what does owning a boat have to due the discussion? I find it intersting that posters to this board you agree with cannot be questioned and you have answers to poster that do question them. I did not see RFR question about owning a boat as a rhetorical question, she was making a point about people getting over extended and should have left it at that. If Betty owns a boat does not have anything to do with the discussion rhetorical or not. Again, with the suggestion that “TheLip might want to familiarize him/herself with the concept of a “rhetorical question” typical left side of the fence response, telling one what one should do because they know better than the one being given directions.

        • Jan Dobson

          Oh, my goodness, TheLip. I’m being scolded for mentioning boats? You are the one who harped on boats in the first place. Quite honestly, I thought you were just trying to redirect discussion away from substantial and toward trivial. But if you want the topic of boats to be your personal purview, that’s okay by me.

          Also, would you like to take a stab at reconciling the third sentence in your above comment with the last sentence?

          • TheLip

            No JD, if you recall, RFR mentioned boats, in fact asking a personal question of Betty about owning one and I just responded to that personal question being asked. I also stated that RFR was making good points but again you must have missed that. I do not tell anyone what to do as in “TheLip might want to familiarize him/herself with the concept of a question.”, I leave that up to the left side of the fence sitters on this board.

          • Jan Dobson

            (CAUTION. More nitpicking ahead.)

            So, let me get this straight, TheLip. If I use the phrase “might want to” in a sentence about another person’s possible behavior it indicates that I’m a control freak. On the other hand, if you use the word “should” in a sentence about another person’s possible behavior it’s hunky-dory. To state it another way, I am disallowed from suggesting what someone “might want to” do while you are allowed to suggest what someone “should” do. Do I correctly grasp the criticism you are trying to make? If so, I reject it on the basis that it constitutes the blatant use of double standard.

            Also, quit trying to bait me into using the word b**t. Use of word b**t is your private territory. That important point has been previously agreed upon.

  • taxpayer28

    it’s hard not to take it personaly when someone holds a gun to your heads and says hand over MY money. (hiring a theif to steal for you makes you as much of a theif as the robber)
    When you vote for a cantidate promising you an entitlement you are a theif.

  • Jan Dobson

    Ms. Fedde: You end your letter by saying, “It’s time we employ more proven methods.” Would you mind explaining exactly what those methods are. Also, would you outline what, in your opinion, would be a fair tax structure.

  • TheLip

    “hold a gun to your head” TP28 honestly what does that really mean. Tax laws are voted on in congress not with someone holding a gun to anyones head. That analogy makes no sense, how about “pick your pocket”? Fair tax structure: Flat Tax.

    • taxpayer28

      The US constitution used to chain congress from treating one citizen differntly than another. progressive tax rates by defenision do this. ever since Rosevelt threatened to pack the court, the suppreme court has rule against president & the constitution itself. If you think they don’t threaten you with force just try not paying you taxes. you’ll end up in prison. if you resist you will be injured.
      If you really want fairness you would start by having the citizens pay for the government they use. so called progressive taxation does just the oppostite.
      Government is not charity, it is force, nothing more or less.

      • wageslave

        Of course, changes to the U.S. Constitution permitted women to vote and ended the separate-but-equal doctrine.

        You wrote: “The US constitution used to chain congress from treating one citizen differntly than another.”

        Explain.

        • Jan Dobson

          1. Woman suffrage came about because of the groundbreaking concept that all are created equal, as is stipulated by the Declaration and the Constitution. Woman suffrage is in perfect accord with the Declaration and the Constitution.

          2. Emancipation came about because of the groundbreaking concept that all are created equal, as is stipulated by the Declaration and the Constitution. Emancipation is in perfect accord with the Declaration and the Constitution.

          3. Progressive taxation defies the Declaration and Constitution by penalizing citizens for being productive and successful. That is, it penalizes citizens that are financially successful due to exercising their right to the pursuit of happiness.

          • RollieB

            “…the groundbreaking concept that all are created equal, as is stipulated by the Declaration and the Constitution.”
            I’m pleased to see JD embrase this concept… given her previous posts on LGBTQ issues. Maybe there has been some progress in her thinking.

          • wageslave

            As long as you’re answering for Taxpayer, explain, as I originally asked, this statement:

            “The US constitution used to chain congress from treating one citizen differntly than another.”

          • wageslave

            I’m glad the Constitution is elastic and our deliberations thoughtful.

            Of course emancipation and suffrage were in accordance with the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. Who thought otherwise?

          • Jan Dobson

            The Declaration of Independence was a precursor the US Constitution. Basic to both the Declaration of Independence and the US Constitution are principles of recognition of and respect for the rights of the individual. The US Constitution is the law of our land. It’s a rulebook for determining what constitutes legal behavior in our national society. That is, it defines what is right and what is wrong.

            Previous to the US Constitution, a country’s law of the land was “elastic” in that it was simply the whim of an absolute ruler, a tyrant, a king, an emperor, a dictator etc. The “elasticity” of absolute rule is well documented as are the brutal abuses of power perpetrated by absolute rulers.

            Interpreting the US Constitution as “elastic” renders it meaningless as a consistent standard for guaranteeing recognition of and respect for individual rights. Embracing the law of our land—the US Constitution—as “elastic” is the same to embracing tyranny.

      • TheLip

        TP28 So you saying if you break the law you should not suffer the consequences? So you are OK with people not paying their taxes (tax cheats) not being punished for that? So if one does not want the use of the fire department they should not have to pay for it. How about the military, there are people who do not believe in the military so they should not have to pay for it? How about the highway patrol, if you don’t like them or use them you should not have to pay for them. Goodness, I get very confused with some of your statements.

        • taxpayer28

          There are rules within the constitution regulating how to change the law. To say a law passed by congress that does not clear constructional scrutiny shows a lack of understanding of a Republic vs. a Democracy. The framers abhorred Democracy as they viewed it from history of the Greeks. They correctly saw that democracies lead to tyranny of the majority, where the majority runs roughshod over the minority opinion. This is where their genius of the separation of powers, not only within the branches of the federal government but separation of State powers. The US constitution enumerated specifically what the Feds could cover and left the police powers to the several States.
          As far as the General welfare clause goes-this has changed dramatically from original intent and president of case law (primarily during the FDR years). I would be careful about the obedient to law argument, I would never support discrimination of other citizens, yet our tax code does just that. If you applied tax code by race of creed instead of production what would you say then? The principle is the same.

          • TheLip

            TP28, so you are OK with someone breaking the law and not having any repercussions?

          • TAXPAYER28

            That depends, by tour argument we would still have slavery! When the law is unjust it should be resisted. Another aspect could look at as well. We everything is so regulated as we have today it become impossible not to break the law. This is by design, now you are no long a nation under the rule of law, but a nation under the law of rulers, (they decide who the law is applied to and who get to subvert it).
            Just look at all the lawmakers who are tax cheats, they can get away with it, even receive administration posts in spite of it.
            Keep trying though Stalin would be proud of you.

  • resident

    Rosie, – your comments are rude arrogant bullying. Make your point without denigration! I can not believe we allow this behavior and attitude in a teacher influencing our kids.

    • Rosie from Rosemount

      resident,

      It would seem that the latest trend used to discredit the truth is to produce a label and attach it to the side or individual who uses real datum in their argument. For example, you have called me names and attached a term to me which has negative connotation, as opposed to offering potential redress to my comment.

      My post is factual and your is not. ‘nuf said.

      • resident

        Rosie, – Don’t change the subject!

  • Paul Hoffinger

    Wikipedia says the TARP program which “rescued” banks and other elements of our financial system was passed into law during the administration of Bush 43, and was less in amount than the cost of the Savings and Loan Crisis of the early Reagan years. It’s also concerning that many of the same folks who complain about such federal “rescue” programs, don’t seem to have any problem with the sweetheart capital gains rates that permit the wealthiest among us to pay a much smaller share of their incomes in tax than folks who don’t receive much income in business dividends at all. They also seem to agree with the Reagan idea that we should “unleash” American business by reducing government regulation, the kind of thing that had something to do with the sub-prime crisis, the accumulation of media by the Murdoch empire, a continued trend toward mergers and acquisitons, and a variety of other job-reducing factors.

    It’s interesting that during the Clinton administration, well-fixed taxpayers paid a much higher capital gains rate, top-income earners paid a higher tax rate, and we had a federal budget surplus, nearly-full employment, a booming economy, fewer people losing their homes or going bankrupt.

    Federal “rescues” of car companies, banks and other parts of our economy, might be far less likely with a better system of regulation. But this is an idea many “conservatives” seem to think intolerably reduces our “personal freedom”, a priority that seems to trump many others who hold libertarian values.

    • taxpayer28

      the market can regulat these industries, if they are allow to fail.

  • TheLip

    TP28, slavery is not a law anymore so what does that have to do with anything so how can you come to the conclusion that we would still have it. So any unjust law in your mind should be resisted? Your patend answer to everything is “you must be a communist”, what a well thought out response, every conclusion in your mind is “you are a communist”. You seem to fall back on that when ever you are confronted and have no answers. Good heavens come up with something new.

    • TAXPAYER28

      Suggested read: The Road to Serfdom by Friedrick Hayek
      It is my contention that we have forgone the Framers constitutional road map for Socialism. This is predictably leading to tyranny, and eventually serfdom.
      My piont, though poorly made, is that the framers placed proceedures to amend the constitution that require heavy majories, and the States to ratify them. when progressive tax code were put in place it went beyond equal protection.
      I think if you wish to see what the outcome of all of this will lead to you can look at history and find examples of the and concluled as I have.
      I would suggest you consider the principle of property rights. Do you have the right to own your property, or is the government just allowing you to use it?

  • TAXPAYER28

    If you study the constitution from the framers point of view (federalist papers etc.) you would conclude that Socialism would be incompatible with the principles outlined in the document.
    This was how the Supreme Court saw it up until FDR’s threat to pack the court. Ref. (the switch in time saves 9)

  • TheLip

    Thanks TP28 for the suggestion of The Road to Serfdom, once done with my current book your suggestion will be my next read.
    Enjoy the day.

  • Jan Dobson

    Today is Martin Luther King Day. Dr. King is a hero of mine. I could find no article about the holiday in this week’s edition so I will here mention that I hope all Americans take a moment to reflect on Dr. King’s incredible courage, heroism and devotion to the principles of the US Constitution.

  • TheLip

    JD, you are so right, that man had sand.

  • TheLip

    JD, please point out where I have told someone what they should do. “Also, quit trying to bait me into using the word b**t. Use of word b**t is your private territory. That important point has been previously agreed upon.”
    Please explain what on earth you are talking about here.

    • Jan Dobson

      TheLip:

      Have you ever seen a movie called “Clean Slate?” It’s a somewhat sad comedy about a guy who wakes up every morning having forgotten everything that transpired on the day(s) before. The star of the movie, I think it was Dana Carvey, copes with his debilitating forgetfulness by writing notes to himself at bedtime that recap events of the day he has just lived. That way, when he wakes up in the morning—even though he has no memory of what he did or said the day before—he has at least a clue as to what’s going on.

      Before retiring for the day, you might want to (just a suggestion now, not a command as to what you SHOULD do) reread your post of Jan. 21, 2013 at 9:28 am, making special note of the words you wrote in the third sentence.

      Meanwhile, it’s still not clear what Ms. Fedde is suggesting when she says, “It’s time we employ more proven methods.”

    • TheLip

      My goodness JD, my mistake, please forgive me for my forgetfulness, you are correct and I have been proven wrong by you, thank you again.You still have not cleared up what you ment by “Also, quit trying to bait me into using the word b**t. Use of word b**t is your private territory. That important point has been previously agreed upon.” Thanks for the recap of the movie to make your point of my forgetfulness. I only hope you would extend that type of jeweler’s eye to every post here. Enjoy the day and stay warm. Now what if I were a senior citizen with a poor memory, would RFR chastise you for being mean? Just wondering. I do agree with you on what proven methods should be used in Ms Fedde’s post, wow, I hope the earth does not swing out of orbit because I agree with you. Hold on to your hats, you never know.

  • Rosie from Rosemount

    !

    • TheLip

      ?

  • Rosie from Rosemount

    Many of my responses have not been posted. I hope this is a technical error and not suppression of ideas.

    • Jan Dobson

      Hey, Rosie. Some time back I had a similar experience. A comment would not post. As you have done, I put a question on the thread. “Is it censorship or is it an error in technology?” A member of the newspaper’s tech team noticed my question and was kind enough to send me a personal email explaining that my comment would not post because it included a word to which the robo-censor objected. The objectionable word was “class.”

      That’s not a typo. The word to which the robo-censor objected was “class.”

      Eventually the comment in question was posted.

      I’m curious. Does anyone know why the rotating new comments roster no longer includes commenters’ names?

  • TheLip

    Well that’s not how it should work nor is it right, hopefuly a technical error.

  • http://sunthisweek.com Tad Johnson

    Some online comments are automatically rejected because they include certain words detected by the filter. If you can email the date and time of the rejected comments to online.thisweek@ecm-inc.com, we can check the database to determine why the comment was rejected.

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