Monday, February 19, 2018

Letters on tax bill, electoral college, Medicare shift

Dec. 5, 2017 at 11:55 p.m.

Bad for America

In the dark of the night, the U.S. Senate passed massive tax cuts for billionaires and big corporations, donors to the GOP (news story, Saturday). The House led the way.

Louie Gohmert, our Fox radio star, again abandoned us for some other constituency. I'll quote his most promising challenger, Brent Beal: "1) The deficit and the national debt didn't matter (this tax plan adds a trillion-plus to the national debt. 2) the process didn't matter (the bill was a mess, thousands of lobbyists were invited into the mix, Democrats were out, no one had time read it or debate it, etc.). 3) the opinions and interests of average Americans didn't matter (because when it comes down to taking care of large donors, we all know who wins). 4) transparency and honesty didn't matter the White House has been flat-out lying about this bill for weeks ... ) It should be clear by now that we live in a plutocracy. Billionaires and big corporations own our political system and they own the GOP."

A tax bill that will leave the next generation of middle class Americans sicker, poorer and dumber is bad for America.

Mike Lewis, Longview

Corrupt machines

Since Hillary lost the presidential race in the electoral college but won the nationwide popular vote, the Democrats have been clamoring for the electoral college to be abolished in favor of the popular vote. There is a very good reason for the electoral college.

Each state receives a certain number of electoral votes based on the population of the state based on the U.S. census data. So no matter how many popular votes the winning candidate in each state receives, the candidate only receives the number of electoral votes assigned to that state.

If the presidential elections were decided by popular votes with no regard for the vote in each state, political machines like those in New York City or Chicago could turn out, dig up (literally), and fabricate enough popular votes to win any election.

George Parr in Duval County was a piker compared to the big city machines.

I'm sure there are also corrupt Republican machines around the country, but they are little league operations compared to the mammoth, big city, corrupt machines that are the backbone of the Democratic Party.

Don Peck, Longview

Reject Medicare shift

As a member of the federal community who served our country for years, I am concerned with an attempt to force current U.S. Postal Service retirees onto Medicare part B after they previously declined this coverage. While hailed as a way to improve USPS' finances, this is nothing more than balancing the books on the backs of seniors.

Why should retirees, who spent their careers serving this nation, be forced to pay an additional $134 per month or more for health coverage they previously deemed unnecessary? Mandatory Medicare part B coverage was never part of the agreement made upon employment and it should not be forced on any postal retiree, especially not retroactively.

Congress is currently attempting to fix the Postal Service's problems by shifting costs to Medicare. I urge our legislators to reject any year-end deal that includes the current postal reform bill, H.R. 756. Retired postal workers proudly served our community and promises to them should be kept.

Marshall L. Richards, Hallsville



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