Franklin Countys First News

Letter to the editor: Turkeys voting for Thanksgiving

I am exhausted. Before I can become outraged over any single atrocity committed by the Trump Whitehouse, another and another and another have been perpetrated. A daily series of scandal and ignorance appears the norm, and the Republican Congress is complicit by their inaction.
The one thing most puzzling to me is the blind support by the average working man for a Republican party that does not represent him.

Since Reagan the Republican Party has been a one-trick-pony: tax cuts.

The Republicans have consistently looked to do away with Medicare and Social Security; meanwhile they placate their base with AR-15’s, open carry, closing abortion clinics, a willingness to enact religious based laws and vilification of brown people. While everyone is distracted they run up massive deficits to pass tax cuts that disproportionally benefit the wealthy.

Remember when Trump promised health care that would be better and cheaper? How has that worked out?

Instead Republicans ran up the deficit one-and-one-half-trillion-dollar specifically to pass tax cuts. I am on a fixed income, yet my tax return this year was actually $29 less than last year. However, with the decrease in taxes on stock market gains and the special rider for real-estate dealers the Trump family saved hundreds of thousands.

Democrats are the party that benefit the working man. But, the Democratic Party is bad at messaging. How would you not benefit from Medicare For All? Instead of tax cuts Democrats would beef up Social Security, pass massive infrastructure programs which would create thousands of new jobs repairing streets, roads, bridges and constructing high speed railways. Democrats would enact free public college and vocational training focusing on renewable energy and technology.

Of course, with the Republican Party in the majority they would object to any Democratic deficit spending that was not tax cut related. It is unfortunate that 90 percent of Republican legislators give the other 10 percent a bad name.

William Gilliland
Farmington, Me

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20 Responses »

  1. This guy is hurting "his own cause".
    Unless his cause it's sounding foolish.
    But lots of that going around these days.

    It's almost as if he doesn't know that " it is better to only be "thought" a fool, than to open your mouth and remove all doubt ".

    Sir,,, the more you yip and yap, the worse it gets.
    You solve absolutely nothing.

  2. "It is better,,,,,"

    Russian Bot visits the Bulldog

  3. It is better - I think your response is a good reaction to your response! You were clearly bothered by the letter, but didn't really say anything to refute it.

    The fact is that the working class squeeze started in 1980. From the late 1800's to 1979 the gap between rich and war was decreasing, due to a growing middle class. After 1980 that stopped. ( I'll link a graph at the end). Moreover, the 1980's appeared to be a booming economy, but it was built on debt - US government debt to GDP went from 30% in 1979 to near 60% by 1990 - and credit card debt mushroomed. Such debt-driven growth always benefits the banks, and large companies. Add to that the rise of outsourcing work, and we've seen a dramatic decline in working class incomes, and the gap between the upper and lower parts of the income spectrum has gone back to levels like in the robber baron days of the late 1800s. Trump captured the anger about this by attacking the politicians and the system, and people looked to Trump to somehow shake things up. However, he's doing the opposite - essentially creating stronger links between big business and big government to squeeze the middle class. He's also isolating a vulnerable US (due to high debt) from the rest of the world when we really need to work together.

    The Democrats have contributed to this mess as well - and both sides avoid blame by demonizing the other side. As long as people think the other side is bad, they'll be easy to manipulate. It's bread and circuses, with an emphasis on circuses!

    (The graph below just goes back to 1980, but it shows how the bottom 90% of the earners had just under 70% of the income in 1980, while the top 10% had just over 30%. Now the top 10% has more than half, while the bottom 90% is in the upper 40's% range.

  4. Remember when Obama said if you like your Doctor you can keep your Doctor? Or that your healthcare insurance costs would decrease? We can play this game all day. Suck it up you will survive. The fact remains half the country was upset the last eight years and half the country will be upset the next eight, but you will survive. The Democratic party is more concerned with protecting the rights of people who enter this country illegally than the working man. Lowest Black unemployment in history, more jobs available than people looking is really keeping the population down. We had eight years of American hating policies, I for one am enjoying the course correction and look forward to more of it. #MAGA

  5. Free health care free college. How is it free if my taxes pay for it?Nothing in life is free, somebody has to pay for it.

  6. I have lived from a Prez that promised a chicken in every pot to a turkey in the White House for 8 years and survived and now I am seeing good times ahead... As that turkey said... elections have consequences... so grin and bear it or bare it whichever you choose..

  7. The fact of this matter has nothing to do with political parties. The big question I have whenever I read a letter of opinion such as this, and the comments thereafter is: Who do you think is going to pay for this wondrous utopia of which you speak? You can't have it all. You either have highly paid public officials or highly maintained infrastructure. Either way, everyone has to pay for it regardless of which political party they choose to affiliate with.

  8. Yes it is bothersome when someone plays the total party line,,, like an idiot.
    Why is it bothersome?
    Because "That" is the problem.
    Yes, both sides do it.,, Like idiots.
    Accomplishes nothing other than dig the other side deeper into their trenches.

    I suppose I could wax at length eloquently,, blaming everybody and blaming no one at the same time.,,using many educated words to make a circle.
    What does that accomplish?

    The author of this piece is blind to only one side.
    Yes, people like that are absolutely bothersome.
    But I defended his right to be the way he is, and my right to my opinion.

  9. No comment section would be complete without a lecture from Mr. Erb.
    Keep it short and simple; vote Republican.

  10. I rest my case.
    William Gilliland

  11. Thank You William and Captain.

    Divide By Zero...

  12. Captain Planet... complete with link to graph.

  13. Enlighten: Previous Administration should be considered the worst in the history of the United States...the article I attached below should make most wake up from the dream state and haze that defies reason and sanity.

    Larry Tomczak says BHO is 'directly responsible for the carnage' against Christians
    Published: 07/17/2017 at 7:04 PM


    Looking back over history, there have been numerous books and articles rating our United States presidents. Various criteria are considered along with the obvious subjective element.

    From the title, the reader knows who I believe places last. From a biblically informed perspective, there are 10 reasons for the unfavorable ranking. They’re listed following three disclaimers:

    When Barack Obama came into office launching his “fundamental transformation of America,” I had a strong sense of foreboding, yet prayed for him daily, repeatedly affirmed his God-given gifts and spoke of him respectfully.
    I tried to separate the person from his positions in evaluating our former president in light of Scripture and not be influenced by his charismatic personality or persuasive communication skills.
    I was intentional in not giving him a “pass” because of our past racial history (as many in the media did), risking the standard liberal accusation of “bigot.”

    He presented himself as an authentic Christian, yet his life revealed a counterfeit convert, bringing reproach to the cause of Christ worldwide.Jesus taught seven distinguishing marks of a genuine Christian. He also said, “Every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit” (Matthew 7:17).
    Examining the beliefs, policies and character of Barack Obama reveals a compromising, deceived man not living according to biblical teachings in numerous consequential areas. He led millions to follow his wayward ways and, like all of us, will one day give an account to God.

    As a candidate, Obama assured Americans of his conviction on the sanctity of marriage as only between a man and a woman, then once elected, pivoted to endorse homosexual marriage and said his finest moment of 2015 was celebrating the Supreme Court ruling as he lit up the White House in rainbow colors. He emphatically and unapologetically gave hearty approbation to what Scripture calls an “abomination.”
    Upon election, he became a staunch proponent and defender of both the dismemberment of unborn babies in abortion plus endorsed financial support for Planned Parenthood, which executes nearly 900 children daily. He pronounced “God bless you!” on the abortion provider at its convention, shocking the sensibilities of tens of millions of pro-life Americans.
    He pledged to bring us out of the recession and reduce the national debt one-half by the time he ended his first term in office but instead allowed it to double from $10 trillion to $20 trillion by his lack of leadership regarding reckless spending, entitlements and waste. Forty-seven percent of America’s debt was accumulated during his eight years in office.
    He promised affordable health care for everyone and promoted it with what has been called the biggest lie of the decade: “You can keep your doctor, and you’ll save $2,500 yearly!” As foretold, premiums and deductibles skyrocketed as Obamacare imploded, revealing it wasn’t affordable but a debacle driving us toward socialized medicine.
    He jeopardized national security by refusing to identify or even mention radical Islamic jihadism as the world’s greatest threat, goading ISIS as a “JV squad” that was “being contained” while they laughed and advanced their terrorism worldwide. He irresponsibly cut strategic missile defense programs now being restored in light of North Korea’s defiant nuclear threat. Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich declared in disgust that Obama “is the greatest threat to national security ever in the Oval Office.”
    He repeatedly acted in a lawless fashion regarding drug enforcement, illegal immigration and religious liberty issues, setting an appalling example replicated in cities throughout America. His repeated uncalled for, insensitive remarks regarding police officers engendered suspicion and disrespect for law enforcement and encouraged left-wing radicals, even those in political office, to act accordingly in defiance of the rule of law.
    His aggressive advocacy of the LGBTQ agenda brought devastation to the future of the traditional family as he endorsed gay marriage, promoted transgenderism in schools, undermined the Defense of Marriage Act, celebrated the homosexual lifestyle by affirming people “coming out” and appointed unprecedented numbers of gay proponents to government and military positions. His policy instructing the military to recruit transgenders is only one example of his initiatives promoting what’s been labeled the “gayification” of the U.S. Armed Forces.
    He refused to heed the counsel of our military experts regarding withdrawal timetables and strategic initiatives in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria and Libya, which led to the slaughter of tens of thousands of people, destruction of holy sites that can never be restored and created a vacuum that birthed ISIS in addition to engendering the catastrophic refugee crisis.I still remember a “60 Minutes” report featuring a Christian leader in Iraq tearfully saying, “The United States walked away, and now ISIS is a cancer that has come to kill and destroy. It’s a cleansing of Christianity!” Former President Barack Obama is directly responsible for the carnage and destruction.
    He alienated Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu repeatedly and jeopardized the future of Israel, one of our strongest allies, in recklessly granting billions to Iran with the empty assurance they would not proceed in developing the nuclear weapon they continue to build to “wipe Israel off the map.”
    Obama’s legacy

    In spite of a fawning liberal media and “progressive” left-wing secularists committed to a “fundamental transformation” of America, millions of patriotic Americans have recognized the astronomical consequences of Obama’s leadership from a Christian perspective.

    Loving God, our families and this great nation, may we reconsecrate ourselves to pray for our current political leaders and ask God to continue intervening, as He obviously has, extending mercy on America. Only a true, heaven-sent spiritual awakening can turn things around so we regain lost ground and recapture the “city on a hill” vision upon which we were originally established.

    Nuff Said...

  14. SCOTT ERB: If you can suspend your study of Mother Jones for a short while you might want to look up post hoc propter hoc. It won't take long and could be a lot of help with your future posts.

  15. My posts: No graphs needed.

    Nuff Said...

  16. Thanks J.L. !!

  17. John F. You should look up the term Gas Lighting, it seems to be your specialty.

  18. Yeah, "short and simple" is definitely the Republican archetype, you nailed that one Captain Planet.

  19. Oh, John, I fear you aren't understanding. There is no logical fallacy here. Basically the US in the late seventies had high inflatino and Paul Volcker ended it with a massive increase in interest rates, causing a recession. This coincided with high oil prices, making the recession worse. The Reagan Administration, along with the Democratic Congress, responded with a sudden embrace of debt - they lowered taxes and increased spending, as the US federal government debt to GDP ratio went from 30% in 1980 to near 60% in 1990. It had been sinking since 1945. At the same time, oil prices dropped. This hyper-stimulated the economy, creating an appearance of economic good health, but hiding a growing debt problem (the 80's were built on debt). On top of that, credit card debt, virtually unheard of before 1980, skyrocketed, meaning consumer debt also fed the economy. This created a structural flaw in the US economy that persisted.

    As debt increased, globalization led to a decline in US manufacturing, and a shift towards goods and services. US consumers --- again, driven by debt -- bought foreign goods, feeding a dramatically rising current account deficit, which is unsustainable. The bottom line is that nearly 40 years of increased debt has lead to deep structural flaws in the economy, and a hallowing out of the middle and working class (decreased union strength also fed this decline in working class economic clout).

    Right now the US is a country in economic decline as China, enjoying current account surpluses and decases of sustained growth, is investing global and taking over as the main global economic power. The US took a wrong turn in the 80s, both parties participated, and have left our youth with high debt and the worst distribution of wealth and income since the late 19th Century.