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September 20, 2014

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Letter to the editor:

Nation has real, hard work ahead

Another view?

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I despair over recent Republican arguments about how to win the 2016 presidency by appealing to various interest groups, such as immigrants and women. How is that more important than the national interest in recovering our competitiveness in the global marketplace?

First, it seems obvious that we need investment in speedier, more reliable public transportation and communications. Hurricane Sandy was costly to the GDP as well as homes and jobs, as it cut electric lines and flooded subways. That suggests underground lines and better flood control are needed.

And if work time is lost because of slow trains in the Northeast or elsewhere, doesn’t that call for bullet trains, providing greater productivity? Also, if other countries have better, less expensive health service and plans, shouldn’t we consider them?

Also, if, as “60 Minutes” has noted, many skilled jobs exist (some in Nevada) but cannot be filled for lack of skilled applicants, shouldn’t we know why this is so?

And if countries outside cheap-labor Asia have found solutions to economic security and a better life for their citizens, might we not look there for clues?

In sum, we should look everywhere and, though contrary to human nature, beyond elective self-interest for possible solutions to our basic problems. Or are office seekers and the electorate too selfish and full of false pride? If so, this is a sorry synonym for American exceptionalism?

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  1. Mr. Weiss is in a government spending mood.

  2. I would say moving utilities underground in high-risk areas (tornadoes, hurricanes, etc.) is an infrastructure project worthy of consideration. But as other have mentioned, the cost must be determined, too.

    I would also place a higher value on efficient, reliable transportation as opposed to having the latest and greatest complex engineering in all circumstances. There is a saying in the IT community; Never underestimate the bandwidth of a station wagon loaded with magnetic tape cartridges.

    As for the initial observation of the letter, all I can say is to not play favorites. Both major parties made blatant attempts (successfully to some extent) to isolate the population into component groups with special interests that should be placed above the nation's as a whole.

  3. I agree with the letter writer that the nation, and particularly President Obama, have alot of hard work ahead. It's going to be a tough 4 years, domestically and globally. I disagree with the letter writer that the Republicans are worried about winning the 2016 election. They are not. They are however doing some well needed soul searching on why they lost the White House in this past election. As well they should and are.

    CarmineD

  4. As it has for a long time now, this all comes down to math. Through foolish actions and inactions by the government and by Americans, as the global economy changed, America didn't change with it. Consequently, we lost many jobs and a great deal of revenue to the government and we created a huge debt.

    More jobs will slowly be created in the private sector as we slowly adjust to the new reality, but many will be lower wage jobs that don't pay enough to support someone very well in this expensive country. Government can create well paying jobs via infrastructure and other projects...but the money to fund such jobs has to come through deficit spending and increasing the debt....

    UNLESS we are willing to reduce government spending in other areas and or raise taxes on the majority of Americans.

    MY problem with the R's is that they are against most government spending to create jobs, can't seem to find many spending cuts except in entitlements, and won't raise any taxes (voodoo math anyone?)

    My problem with the D's is that they are for for government spending to create jobs, but can't seem to find many spending cuts except in defense, and the only taxes they will consider raising are a small raise on a small portion of wealthy people (voodoo math anyone?)

    If the government is going to spend more in some areas, it needs to spend less in others. If the government needs more revenue, that revenue needs to come from all Americans in the form of higher taxes, not just higher taxes on a wealthy few. That's real math, not voodoo math.

    Michael

  5. Who cares about 2016? How about dealing with the economy and Federal budget as it stands RIGHT NOW TODAY! Personally, I don't care about the "fiscal cliff" and I want the BUSH ERA tax cuts to EXPIRE, like they should have TWO YEARS AGO. Having said that, I see the usual partisan hackery going on since the election ended, with no end in sight. But thanks to sequestration and the drop dead date for the Bush tax cuts, it DOESN'T MATTER WHAT THE HACKS IN CONGRESS DO! Keep BS'ing and gibbering about matters THAT DON'T MATTER.

  6. Stuart Weiss you touch on the very problem with leaders in Washington and throughout the USA. A lack of vision and creativity in preparing American for the future.

    There is only one leaders talking about the future. There is only leaders who has plans to prepare America to meet the challenges....President Barack Obama.

    The President main focus is to improve our education system. This is priority number one! The President also understands we need to forge ahead and advance our transportation systems. This includes high speed rail and improvements to our highway system as well. In addition, America's internet system is being evaluated to improve security and allow access for more American, this will improve commerce throughout the USA. And other important items, such as creating a national health record system to reduce redundancy and reduce cost. New fuel standard that will improve gas mileage for US vehicle and reduce emissions thereby improving air quality. All of this and more is coming from President Obama.

    Sadly, Republicans are focused on politics and not the future of America. We need more people in leadership who are will take action to prepare the America People to meet the challenges and after real solutions and not focus on trying to remove one man from office. That strategy failed. That strategy was soundly rejected by the majority of the American People on November 6, 2012.

    Debt will always be a part of any growing country. Advancing the country requires creative thinking. It starts with education. The President understands this approach, and the majority of the American People. This was made clear on November 6, 2012.

  7. Jeff,

    It really is disingenuous to say that all I offer is that 'R's are bad and so are D's'.

    I have stated that the reason they are both bad isn't anything inherent in each party, but instead is due to the system they work in. They are all happily hostage to the money and assistance offered by powerful interests to help them get elected and stay in office. It is a corrupt system and it corrupts everyone in it, R or D. I know you don't like hearing that, but that doesn't make it not true.

    Solutions? I have suggested public financing of campaigns, Congressional term limits and lobbying reform.

    You can stick with the belief that if we just elected all D's, everything would be fine, if you like, but believing that also doesn't make it true. Neither is it true for true believers on the R side.

    The real problem you have with me is that I won't take a side. There is a reason for that. I realize that until we change the system under which the R's and D's operate in Congress, there is no 'better' side. The system corrupts everyone and until that changes, we cannot expect to see the country move in a good direction.

    I was like you, but locked into the R's instead of D's. Like I said, we all have to vote for someone and I never have a problem with that. Vote D if you like, but be open enough to entertain the idea that the D's are held hostage to this corrupted system, just like the R's are.

    Michael

  8. Jeff, Very well said.

  9. Michael,

    You are spot on in identifying the key problem with our political system. It's the money and the accountability. Citizen United opened the flood gates. But you know the money was always there, now it's out in the open without an identity or accountability.

    This is your best issue Micheal. You were the first to bring this up. What is the solution?

  10. What? We should become a "one party" country? How nutty is that? No leftist takes that tack when the Republicrats are in the majority and no leftist calls "foul" when Dumbocrats work to defeat incumbent Republicrats. Now, why is that? It's because, although they may be too partisan to realize it, that's how our system has worked since its inception. The "loyal" opposition works to dislodge the other party. Supposedly, that keeps the crooks, liars and thieves who usually win office honest. Not so much, lately. Do we need a Morsi to rule over us? We have a quasi-Morsi in Osama Obama already and he is one too much, for me. Hail to the two party system. Now, if it would truly work on our behalf.

  11. The letter writer is spot on.The Republican party has made it their main focus to win the 2012 Presidental election at all costs.Instead of trying to help fix the woes of the country.Their actions did help in the defeat of Gov. Romney at the polls this past Nov.6th.Presidental race.

    The midterm elections are just 2 short years away.If they the Republicans want to gain any ground they had better start thinking about the country.Instead of their own rear ends.

  12. In a rush to hang Benghazi on Obama you on the right deleted a significant part of the equation. At that time twenty plus countries lost their minds over the xenophobic anti Muslim video. You also fail to acknowledge the CIA issued their report attributing the riots to the video as well.

    How can we ever succeed as a country when people prefer to be ignorant by ignoring reality? Fear and hate is driving the far right over the edge of sanity and reason.

  13. "I am sure if he took the time to write a book that ....and DiFazio would still sit their with their slings and arrows, " @Jeffery

    It would appear the only slings and arrows are coming from you, as usual.

    I don't see any constructive thoughts and words in your message, just personal and political attacks against those who disagree with you.

    CarmineD

  14. Jeffery:

    Too bad it took a second message from you a whole day later to make the points you should have made in the first message.

    CarmineD

  15. Let me return the favor and response to you Jeffery. President Obama should embrace the recommendations of his hand picked and appointed Commission of Simpson-Bowles. That's my suggestion as a start.

    CarmineD

  16. The Simpson-Bowles recommendations were rejected by the House Republicans who were on the Simpson-Bowles commission lead by Paul Ryan.

    Simpson-Bowles did not have the votes needed to advance the report to the House floor for a vote, because of the Paul Ryan and House Republicans on the commission.

  17. "The Simpson-Bowles recommendations were rejected by the House Republicans who were on the Simpson-Bowles commission lead by Paul Ryan.

    Simpson-Bowles did not have the votes needed to advance the report to the House floor for a vote, because of the Paul Ryan and House Republicans on the commission." @LTV

    Dems and Reps alike voted against S-B. In Ryan's case, and others, because S-B did not address the issues of rising health costs. It is a valid reason to do so [vote against], and even more so now that Obamacare is enacted into law. Some would say it was prescient on the part of those who did vote against S-B for excluding health care costs. Obamacare adds 30 million uninsured to the roles, expands Medicaid coverage at the state levels to more, and forces establishment of health care exchanges nationwide, without addressing funding at the State and Federal levels for any of these. It [Obamcare] needs to be on the table for financial reforms.

    CarmineD