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Letters to the Editor published Nov. 21, 2012
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Fiscal cliff can be tied directly to Congress

Editor, Ceres Courier,

Does anyone else see the comedy of watching Congress and the Obama administration wrestle over the fiscal cliff?

First of all, who created the "fiscal cliff"? Congress created it to force themselves to fix the problem of not being able to stick to a budget. The fiscal cliff is an agreement where democrats vow to punish high income/net worth citizens and republicans vow to punish lower and middle income citizens unless both sides can come to an agreement on who to tax more and who should get the government money handouts. Yes, the real issue is who gets the handouts.

Isn't it ironic that congress put their citizens in harm's way as a means of forcing themselves to do the job we elected them to do? Did we hire them to punish us? Hahahahah, chuckle...

Here is where I throw my hands up in the air and start laughing. I want all the Democrats who wanted their congressperson to put them in a potentially painful financial situation to raise their hands. Then I want all the Republicans who wanted their congressperson to put them in a potentially painful financial situation to raise their hands. I bet there aren't enough hands in the air to have a backyard party even if there were free hot dogs.

Do we hear more about "fairness" or fixing the problem? Anyone with two kids can manage the "fairness" issue better than congress. Please run for office because your country needs you. You have the necessary skills.

Here are some thoughts. The Department of Defense has a budget of 524 billion dollars, the National Intelligence program has a budget of 52 billion, and Homeland Security has a budget of 40 billion. There has to be some synergies there and maybe consolidation would facilitate communication. Oh yeah, there is another 96 billion for Overseas Contingency Operations.

We budgeted 8 billion for the Department of Commerce and 12 billion for the Department of Labor. Shouldn't these two groups be in the same building? It might be easier to solve problems. They seem related.

Government keeps getting bigger. Defense spending has risen from 300 billion in 2000 to around 800 billion today. Did your wages almost triple for doing the same job? We spend 36 billion dollars on the Department of Energy to not have a discernible energy policy. The problem is that government always gets bigger. Bigger means more taxes. More taxes mean more loopholes and more loopholes means more IRS auditors...etc. They say that the only thing that protects us from government is its inefficiency. It sure looks like government can grow efficiently in any economic environment and we are not protected.

Seriously? Are you laughing at this comedy?

Mark Laurora

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