Letters to the Editor

Unwise cuts

May 15, 2012


To the editor:

Why would Gov. Brownback and Mike O’Neal and radical right-wing Republicans force through a budget bill that calls for a huge deficit by 2017? Their theory may be that leaving more money for the rich will stimulate job growth and general prosperity, but this has been thoroughly disproved. Why would they continue down this dead-end path?

I believe we saw their intent here at home with the plan to close our SRS office. They didn’t want to close the office, they assured us; there just wasn’t enough money in the budget — the budget they created.

That was small potatoes compared with the cuts needed with the new budget. The cuts again will be made with the excuse that there just isn’t enough money to go around. Again state hospital staffs will be decimated, funds for general health and mental health will be cut, services to the unemployed, the elderly and the disabled will be slashed. School funding will be cut again.

The governor simply wants less government, regardless of the effects. You get a sense of his commitment to the less fortunate when he cuts taxes for the wealthy and increases taxes for people with low and middle income. He commented that the basic needs of homeless people are being met (yes, he did say that) while he handed out some hamburgers at our homeless shelter. He is out of touch with those who do need help.

Government should be for all the people. Remember this at election time!


Maddy Griffin 6 years, 1 month ago

Because that's what Koch Industries told them to do. Besides,by 2017, Brownback will no longer be in Kansas,he'll be in the White House. In his mind anyway.

Flap Doodle 6 years, 1 month ago

gram's up early getting her assigned talking points in.....

JackMcKee 6 years, 1 month ago

Nobody will want to live Kansas by the time these nitwits are finished.

JackMcKee 6 years, 1 month ago

I'll be more than happy to take my retirement nest egg to a nicer climate.I'll leave the asylum to the inmates. If all you have left is far right zealots and people too poor to get out you're going to realize what living in hell is all about. Kansas will be a place you don't even want to stop for gas.

jhawkinsf 6 years, 1 month ago

There is one way and one way only to opt out. That is to leave. Those are your only choices. Get over it.

jhawkinsf 6 years, 1 month ago

You have a wide variety of choices of where you can go. Go to any city, any state, any country where the type of economic system is more to your liking. Your problem Liberty is that there is no such animal. It doesn't exist here or anywhere. And because no place has an economic system that matches your desires, you can choose to remain here, with the system we have or you can go where the system most closely resembles what you want. So you do have choices, just none that you like. Welcome to the real world.

jhawkinsf 6 years, 1 month ago

Liberty, I never said you can't try to change the system. Should you garner enough support, good for you. I applaud your attempts at change and I will defend your right to try to make that change. All I'm saying is that until you are able to garner that support, until you are able to convince others of the wisdom of your ways, you're either stuck with our system or you have the freedom to seek a system more to your liking. That, "young man", are your choices.

jhawkinsf 6 years, 1 month ago

Well, dad, you could spend your time speaking politics and economics online. Or you could get off your butt and do something about it. You could stand on the corner of 9th. & Mass. and hand out flyers. Convince one person and they could go to 10th. and Mass. and hand out some more flyers. Should they convince just one more, you'll have 11th. and Mass. covered. Or you could write letters, go to town meetings, conduct your own town meetings. There's much you could do. And if you've already done these things, or similar things, yet have been unsuccessful in getting people to change their minds, maybe there is a reason for that. Maybe they don't agree with you. Maybe the world is not as dynamic as you would like. Or you may b*tch and moan online. Either way, dad. BTW - I'll be filling out my retirement papers soon, getting my well earned social security checks in the very, very near future. Will I be seeing you at the social security office?

jhawkinsf 6 years, 1 month ago

As have I for the past many decades. No gripes. Just paying my fair share as payment for having had the benefit of living in a civilized society. So I will thank you for your contribution as you should thank me for mine, as we should all thank each other.

jhawkinsf 6 years, 1 month ago

The stealing you describe paid for your public school education, and that of your children and grandchildren, dad. Those firemen that put out the fire in your neighbor's home would have done the same for you. Or maybe they did. If you happened to be in the World Trade Center on 9/11, just enjoying the view, it was they that went in to save you, your children, your grandchildren. Or the police that caught that burglar last week, you know, the one that was going to rob your house next week, the one who was going to imperil your life and those of your children and grandchildren. Wasn't that your grandchild who had the medical emergency last week? Or was that my grandchild? I forget, but someone has to pay for that. So our civilized society "steals" a bit of yours and a bit of mine. What you call Stockholm Syndrome might be called a lack of gratitude. A simple thank you should suffice. You're Welcome, dad.

jhawkinsf 6 years, 1 month ago

Let me ask you a simple question, Liberty. This economic system you value so highly, the one with so many advantages. It must be thriving in many places and it must have thrived at many times throughout history. So I might examine these places, and fairly compare the results of those systems compared to our own flawed system, would you please give me a few examples of these idyllic places and the times in which they flourished.
I thank you in advance.

jhawkinsf 6 years, 1 month ago

Interestingly, you did not answer my question. Is it because you can't, because this nirvana you strive for is nothing but a dream, an illusion?

As to the question of where I'd rather live, the answer is obvious. I'm a free person, able to go wherever I choose. There are few restrictions placed on my travels, none if I show just a tad of resourcefulness. I choose to live exactly where I am, in Lawrence, Kansas, U.S.A. As do you, I presume. So just like me, you must also believe that when balanced, this is the best place for you. At last, Liberty, we've come to agreement.

jhawkinsf 6 years, 1 month ago

No, you did not answer the question. I didn't ask for the results of a survey of where other people want to be. I asked for those places that fit "your" criteria, places that do not tax people, places where one may opt out of paying for roads and schools, opt out of medical care and social security. I asked where is "your" idyllic place. And now that you've opened the door when you asked would I rather be, here or there, I'll ask a follow up question as well. Once you tell me where "your" idyllic place is, why are you not there, given you are free to go wherever you choose? Why do you each day choose to be in a place where you are unhappy? BTW - "dad" would not call me obtuse. I'm beginning to question whether or not I am really your "son", as you called me early in this thread.

jhawkinsf 6 years, 1 month ago

You're not seeing the forest for all the trees in your way. This Utopia you seek doesn't exist now and has never existed because it's a fantasy, a mirage, a figment of your imagination. It doesn't exist because people choose not to organize themselves in such a manner. We have always had that option, yet we have always known it for what it is. It's fools gold, Liberty. And you're buying.
I choose the U.S. not because it's perfect, I choose it because it's best for me. The same for Kansas and the same again for Lawrence. And unless you're making decisions contrary to your own best interests, then you must also be coming to that same conclusion. Given your obvious contradiction, who is doing the time wasting?

jhawkinsf 6 years, 1 month ago

O.K., Liberty, you've called me ignorant, obtuse, etc., I'm going to call your bluff. I sincerely believe you are lying. About what? I'll explain. While you're asking to opt out of this or that, the problem is that you're asking us to opt out as well. What are you asking us to opt out of? Our collective humanity. You're telling us that should you go into full cardiac arrest, you, having opted out, we should just let you be. If you are in a major car accident, pinned inside, bleeding to death, we should not respond, we should just let you be. You are asking us to behave like animals, forgetting the very thing that makes us different. You're asking us to not be human. But while that's what you say, I don't believe you. You're counting on us to not opt out of our humanity. You're comforted by the fact that we will respond no matter how big a jerk you are. We will provide for you and you know it. You're counting on it, deep down. That's your lie, Liberty. You're not telling the truth. BS, Liberty. I cannot opt out of my humanity, Liberty. I once worked as a first responder. If I see you in full cardiac arrest, you will receive help. If you're involved in that car accident, you will receive help. From me. I cannot opt out of humanity, you can't opt out of whatever it is you want to opt out of and neither of us can opt out of society, unless we move to another society. And then we can't opt out of that one.
Buy a starship, go to the moon. Tell the Martians your lies, Liberty. But do not pee on my leg and tell me it's raining.

Liberty275 6 years, 1 month ago

"There is one way and one way only to opt out. That is to leave. Those are your only choices."

And take your jobs to China with you.

chootspa 6 years, 1 month ago

So did you intend an alternate meaning for the word "written," or are you simply bereft of any grammatical sense?

Nellane Laney Croan Stussie 6 years, 1 month ago

I wonder which car on the gravey train Joe is riding?

Doug Harvey 6 years, 1 month ago

Earth to libertarians: we went through all this after the crash of 1929 -- churches and civic groups don't have the resources to cope with the mentally ill and handicapped, much less the dire poverty created by boom and bust economics. Or maybe you think a Nigerian economic model is a good thing. The Koch Bros, Brownback's handlers, would benefit from being able to pay starvation wages to a large number of jobless people scrambling like rats over each other to get their pittance. Lawrence is the most vibrant community in Kansas, hands down. Why? It's also the most socialized. Go to Hays or Salina or even Wichita and see what their libertarianism is doing for them.

jhawkinsf 6 years, 1 month ago

Using that logic, if one were to go to California, or more specifically San Francisco, with even greater socialism, one might expect an even more vibrant community. But that's not what you would find. You will find great wealth living alongside homeless individuals who have been there for decades. You will find the mentally ill wandering the streets aimlessly. And you will find a general population who is so accustomed to their presence that they don't even see them. You will find junkies shooting up in plain sight of the very few school children that remain in the city with the smallest child population. Used condoms and needles litter the streets. As does human feces and the stench of urine everywhere. Perhaps the extreme libertarians don't provide the answers. But neither does the extreme socialists nor the extreme capitalists. Perhaps extremism only provides extremism. As intellectually unfulfilling as practical pragmatism might be, it just might be what provides the best solutions.

vimana 6 years, 1 month ago

thumbs up. you made my boss ask me what I was laughing at

tbaker 6 years, 1 month ago

Mr. Douglas - what is wrong with the people who actually worked for the money keeping more of what is theirs to begin with?

The state will only run a deficit if spending continues at current levels. Why don't you point that out?

In a down economy, raising tax rates reduces overall tax revenues, just like raising the minimum wage increases unemployment. The best way to increase tax revenues is not by raising the tax rate, but by increasing the tax base. We should be talking about growing the whole economy instead of more tedious liberal whining about tax cuts that presume all state spending is utterly essential.

Cant_have_it_both_ways 6 years, 1 month ago

Many of you liberals sound like the person that owns the bar and see that they are now selling more of one type of beer. Their thought processes tell them that they can make more money by raising the price of that beer, when in fact they will either move that customer to a different brand or to a different bar.

This is what happens when you continue to tax the snarf out of the working people. When you get to a point where the working people or the rich are bearing to much of the burdon, then they tend to leave. Look at California, businesses are leaving, according to news reports, in groves. I would guess that the Jostens plant in Topeka did not really care where it was going to down size to, but when the investment is required, they chose the more tax friendly place to settle.

I know that when it it time for me to retire, I too, will choose a place where I have a little control over my taxes, which makes Tennessee, Texas, Nevada and the other no income tax states look very attractive.

jafs 6 years, 1 month ago

If one checks the above link, the only thing questioned was the term "Big Oil", because the Koch brothers' involvement in the oil industry isn't as big as some others.

However, they did in fact donate more money to political causes than some larger oil companies.

A tempest in a teapot, I'd say.

I guess a $100 billion/yr. oil company isn't "big" to some people.

jafs 6 years, 1 month ago

Source, and your point, if you have one?

Ragingbear 6 years, 1 month ago

Deficits are good for the economy....somehow.

Lawrence Morgan 6 years, 1 month ago

jhawinsf does not depict the San Francisco I live in. I live here as well as Kansas. I know every part of this town. Sure, it has some difficulties, like any town, but he's totally making up things. He's totally wrong and to write this kind of stuff in the Journal World is totally UNTRUE!

jhawkinsf 6 years, 1 month ago

For many years, I owned a business at 6th. and Natoma. Do you know the neighborhood? And while I lived in the Sunset, It was difficult taking my child into Golden Gate Park, what with the needles in the sand by the playground. I recall one time yelling at him when he went to pick up a used condom, he thinking it a balloon, I thinking it better to scare him rather than he pick it up (it all happened rather quickly). My car was broken into on average one time per year. Once the person was caught, an illegal immigrant who was sentenced to probation, even though he was already on probation. Didn't a young Mr. Ramos recently get convicted for a triple murder even though he had be shielded from federal authorities due to S.F.'s sanctuary policy. S.F. was a fine town, I liked many things about it. I also liked leaving, as so many adults do as soon as they have children. Please do give S.F. my regards.

pace 6 years, 1 month ago

Generations of Kansans have built this state, and Gov Brownback is selling it's infrastructure for pennies on the dollar. If his tax cuts were suppose to create jobs it would be a carrot, not a give away gift to the wealthiest. The abuse to the elderly and ill is bad, but cutting the kids out of a decent education bothers me the worst. Governor Brownback should resign, being as he is addicted to Koch.

Mark Pickerel 6 years, 1 month ago

I remember a guy named Graves who was governor not too long ago. He cut taxes and it resulted in deficits a few years later, and Sebelius had to come in and clean up the mess. I imagine the same thing will happen a few years from now, and Sam will have a nice golden parachute.

History repeating itself.

seriouscat 6 years, 1 month ago

Oh just wait! When we are really in a hole due to the massive tax cuts the next step is selling off public assets at rock bottom prices to foreign investors who run them through management companies! Whoowee can't wait!

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