Jan. 14 Letters to the Editor
When you don’t believe in God, you will believe in anything. This is evident in the letters of the “revenge” voters, as they flail about trying to justify their intolerance.
Stephen K. Gross
When confronted with the figures on the national budget, debt limit, revenue or deficit, the average citizen has no frame of reference for understanding these numbers in billions or trillions.
To assist in this dilemma, I have developed what I call the perspective factor or P-Factor. It is 50 million. Take any of these gigantic federal numbers write it down and divide by the P-Factor. (Move the decimal left seven places and divide by 5.) Now you have it in terms that one can relate to.
For example, take the federal tax revenue for 2012 ($2.4 billion), apply the P-Factor and it reduces to $48,000. That could represent a household earning $4,000 per month. Then do the same with the federal budget, deficit and debt. You then see that this household is spending $5,833 a month. It accomplishes this by borrowing $1,833 each month. But it already has a debt of $328,000. The interest on this debt is only slightly above 2 percent, but still costs this household $600 per month.
Once P-Factored, we can see this household is in trouble and must significantly raise revenue or reduce spending. The current administration sees raising the debt limit is the best solution.
You can also apply the P-Factor to any proposed tax increase or budget reduction to see how it will affect the hypothetical household. If someone proposes a budget reduction of $100 million a year, it is the equivalent of our $4,000 a month household proposing a cut in expenses of just $2.
There is debate whether there even is a fiscal crisis and, conversely, if raising taxes on the upper two percent will do anything to alleviate the crisis. The fact that we are running trillion-dollar deficits every year indicates a crisis. The federal government cannot continually spend that much more money than it takes in.
The rationale for borrowing money is based upon the assumption that next year there will be sufficient additional money to fund programs and enough extra to service the debt. The only way the federal government is going to have more income is if we have an expanding economy. That has not materialized in the last four years and we have not kept up with population growth. Average Gross National Product has increased at less than two percent annually, which is a stagnating economy. We will have to cut spending to even service present debt.
President Obama declared class warfare and raising taxes on the “rich” is his battle plan. Unfortunately, there are no winners in class warfare. Even if he gets his tax increases, there is the false expectation that he will have more money to spend. The United States needs to cut spending, even if taxes increase. There is a danger that with the tax increase, the economy may suffer even more and net income to the federal government may actually decrease. The real crisis comes when the credit rating sinks again and we have to pay more just to service debt.
Kelly C. Niemi
Semi-auto rifles and high capacity magazines make our country stronger. During World War II, as found in Japanese documents when the was over, the Japanese did not attack the U.S. mainland after Pearl Harbor for the reason that U.S. citizens were too heavily armed.
President Obama has said, and I quote, “We cannot continue to rely on our military in order to achieve the national security objectives that we’ve set. We’ve got to have a civilian national security force that’s just as powerful, just as strong, just as well-funded.”
I disagree, as we already have an armed populace of 75,000,000 people. That is a huge deterrent to a foreign power. It is called an armed citizenry that was defined by our forefathers as the citizen militia who are armed by right of the Second Amendment.