Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor 8/17

Greedy, not scared

The commentary by Victor Davis Hanson on Aug. 11 titled “What if the president liked businesspeople?” just struck me as the most inane thing I’ve read in a long time.

Most of the bigger businesses import merchandise from, or send jobs to, other countries.

I would say that almost 90 percent of the items in some of the stores I shop in are from other countries. The statement, “Private sector businesses may have more than $1 trillion in cash, but they will be scared into not hiring or buying as long as they fear a new tax, a new regulation, (etc.)” They don’t come across as scared as much as they do greedy. And private oil companies, which do pay for the cost of exploration, export for almost sickening profits.

Our biggest debt began by a most unfortunate decision by the younger Bush to invade Iraq without the support of other countries. And if the tax break to the wealthy really worked we’d have jobs, wouldn’t we?

Marilyn Sims


Legalized bribery

A front-page article on Aug. 12 read “Special interests gave millions to budget panel.” The common situation described in the article is both legal and corrupting. It is legalized bribery and must stop if our country has a hope to survive.

Campaign finance reform is the solution. It is both complicated and necessary. It must occur to salvage our government system, but those in power do not want it. John McCain once campaigned on behalf of campaign finance reform.

Call him, write him, ask him to take up the mantle again.

Call and write Lois Capps, Kevin McCarthy, Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein. They need to know it is important to us, the people. Without campaign finance reform, legalized bribery will continue to ruin our great country.

Jane Mallett

Morro Bay

Retirement earned

Ms. Trout’s Aug. 16 letter doing the “Retirement Math” is lacking one crucial figure. What is the percentage of salary contributed by the police and fire department employee toward his or her retirement? I don’t have exact figures, but I’m sure they can be found.

I remember a number of years while working for the county, our entire pay raise went to cover increases in retirement contributions and medical insurance costs. Some people have the mistaken idea that police and fire department employees are getting a free lunch when it comes to retirement.

This is not true. As a deputy sheriff, I paid into my pension trust for 27 years and into Social Security for 39. I think I earned my retirement.

C.J. Bell

Arroyo Grande

So long, stay gone

This is in response to Paul Williams’ Aug. 14 letter. Bon voyage.

Thanks, Mr. Williams and his family, for your good wishes. We, who are staying behind, are going to bear and overcome the burdens of this great nation without your help. You know the old saying: When the going gets rough, the tough get going.

Wish I could be more professional with this note; however, I can’t. I served my country in the military and in public school, teaching for nearly 40 years. Do I complain about the high tax bracket I’m in? Sure, but then I attempt to do something positive to improve upon my position, and that of my country.

Fair seas and following winds, Mr. Williams. Don’t come back when the United States has straightened its course.

August Runte


Broke is broke

Nationwide, 16 percent of the people eligible to vote are on public payrolls. If each one is married, that makes up 32 percent of the electorate who are voting to preserve their jobs and benefits. It would seem that here in SLO County that percentage is even higher, based on all the letters that stream into The Tribune blaming the tea party for everything from the U.S. credit downgrade, to the fact that Obama’s rating with the public has slipped down below 40 percent.

They leave me wondering what part of the simple word, “Broke” don’t they understand? Here in California, where the Senate and Legislature are completely controlled by Democrats and governed by a stooge of the labor unions, public employee pensions have remained untouched, their costs are totally out of control and it’s rapidly drawing us down into a cesspool of economic disaster.

Where do they think this money is going to come from? Businesses have left the state in droves because of high taxes, over-regulation and union demands, while decently-paid private employment has shrunk accordingly. Those of us who have worked all our lives and are trying to get by on our Social Security checks and what we have saved will be the first to be squeezed out.

R.L. Hyde

Morro Bay

Failing our children

Don Volle’s Aug. 14 Viewpoint about America’s deteriorating system of public education is a vitally powerful statement by an educator who cares deeply about our children’s future.

It is rapidly becoming recognized around America that we are failing our children, increasingly lowering expectations, requirements and support. We have lost critical focus on what is important to our nation, which is providing, maintaining and enhancing a premier system of public education, second to none.

Our students are bored, disinterested and confused as to what is truly important, having little sense of being supported and encouraged to do their very best in all areas of education. America has “lowered the bar” so low that we are grossly ignoring higher-achieving students who desperately need focused attention to receiving mind-expanding challenges.

The Central Coast STEM Education Collaborative (www.endeavours.org/STEM), a new community-based organization dedicated to developing and enhancing robust science, technology, engineering and mathematics education inside and outside of our schools, is addressing Don’s concerns, and more.

Walter Reil


Pismo paradise lost

I grew up in Pismo Beach in the ’40s and ’50s. My mother took the census there in 1950, mostly by herself. The population was 1,900, made up of many different ethnicities. Everyone knew everyone else and most people were middle class.

We had a Bank of America, a Safeway, Pismo Theatre, a skating rink and an arcade with rides down where the tourists park their RVs now. There were no mansions and, quite honestly, I can’t remember any wealthy people.

My mother and father hitchhiked to California during the migration and both had businesses on Price Street. Our lives were ideal, with no crime and lots of friends in a town that came together like one big family.

Then, one day I left to pursue my career and when I came back, it was all gone. Developers, corrupt government and now this annexation, which is total madness. My grandchildren find it hard to believe me when I tell them how it was. The town in its original limits is in a state of ruin.

I am 73 now and hopefully I will be in my grave before they change the name of Pismo to North Los Angeles.

Wayne Roberts

Pismo Beach