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Letters to the Editor

Republican leaders’ inflated claims fall flat

Republican leaders in Congress are bemoaning their projection that President Obama will double the national debt in 10 years and “bankrupt” the country.

Many of these Republican leaders, including Arizona’s own Jon Kyl and John McCain, were in Congress when:

• Ronald Reagan nearly tripled the national debt from all previous presidents combined from $937 billion to almost $3 trillion. Dick Cheney later said, “Ronald Reagan proved that deficits don’t matter.”

• Bill Clinton’s National Deficit Reduction Act of 1993 (which did not receive a single Republican vote) reduced the federal deficit and produced the first surplus budgets since LBJ’s last budget in 1969.

Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan testified to Congress in February 2001 in favor of reducing federal revenues so the national debt would not be paid off too quickly.

• George W. Bush doubled the national debt from slightly more than $5 trillion to almost $11 trillion, aided and abetted by these very same Republican leaders.

Three-fourths of our national debt today was accumulated under three Republican presidents: Reagan, George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush.

The Republican leaders who drove this country into the ditch now complain to the tow-truck driver who has come to the rescue that it is going to cost a lot of money to get the country out of the ditch and back onto the road to prosperity.

These Republican leaders should be sent into exile never to be heard from again.

Roger A. White

Give AIG executives the boot – boot camp

The AIG, Merrill Lynch and other players whose greed, irresponsibility and arrogance brought down the economy probably did not break the law.

The last 12 years of deregulation – thank you Phil Gramm – and laissez-faire attitude of the regulatory agencies probably make their behavior legal. But these people clearly lack moral integrity and social values.

We send teenagers who get into mild trouble or who display patterns of antisocial behavior to Boot Camp to learn some discipline and the value of cooperation, so they mature and develop nondestructive behavior patterns. I suggest we do the same for this crop of Wall Street delinquents.

Let’s send the people who were the top salary and bonus earners in these failed companies to reality boot camp.

Wouldn’t it be appropriate for John Thain, formerly of Merrill Lynch (rumored to be McCain’s choice for Treasury secretary), who handed out billions in bonuses and redid his office bathroom with a $1,000 trash can and $3,000 toilet, to strike out into the woods to do his business with a hand shovel and three pieces of useless paper that were once valuable stocks ?

How about making AIG execs who are used to drinking $300 bottles of wine with their $500 meals find their own drinking water in a stream a mile away, and forage for their dinners?

After six months of survival training, we’ll test their readiness for the real world by giving them jobs as custodians in schools filled with low-income students, pay them 50 cents below minimum wage, with no end-of-year bonuses. That should test their new-found moral fortitude.

Joan Safier

retired teacher

Government lulls us into false security

Can anyone believe we’ll come out of this recession by the government’s borrowing massive amounts of money and throwing it around?

Officials say they’re injecting capital, but capital is supposed to be what you have left after producing all that you need.

Our government is broke. It has no capital. What it’s investing is debt, no matter what they call it. Do reasonable people believe this makes sense, when excessive debt got us into the problem? Of course not!

Then why do so many people seem to support the Barack Obama plan? Because we all want stuff and, if the government is willing to steal via borrowing and taxation to give to us and our friends, we go along.

Our own government tells us this is the way to prosperity.

We are reminded of that comment by Ronald Reagan in the presidential campaign against Jimmy Carter, following a Carter remark that he loved a cold shower every morning. Reagan’s response was, “Anyone who will tell you he likes a cold shower in the morning will lie about other things, too.”

Our government is lying about the solution to the crisis, and it will lie about other things, too.

Feeling guilty for accepting stolen property and feeling like idiots for going along with the ridiculous concepts seems insufficient to jolt us back to reality.

Worse, it deadens our minds from being on the lookout for other incredible things our government preaches.

Such apathy will inevitably lead to an even more tragic outcome, such as the one predicted by Alexis de Tocquevlle.

He reminded us, “The will of man is not shattered, but softened, bent and guided; men are seldom forced by it to act, but they are constantly restrained from acting.

“Such a power does not destroy, but it prevents existence; it does not tyrannize, but it compresses, enervates, extinguishes, and stupefies a people, till each nation is reduced to nothing better than a flock of timid and industrious animals, of which the government is the shepherd.”

Roy Miller


Citizen Online Archive, 2006-2009

This archive contains all the stories that appeared on the Tucson Citizen's website from mid-2006 to June 1, 2009.

In 2010, a power surge fried a server that contained all of videos linked to dozens of stories in this archive. Also, a server that contained all of the databases for dozens of stories was accidentally erased, so all of those links are broken as well. However, all of the text and photos that accompanied some stories have been preserved.

For all of the stories that were archived by the Tucson Citizen newspaper's library in a digital archive between 1993 and 2009, go to Morgue Part 2

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