RJ reader opinions: Money and politics; Malloy and Foley; the Berlin Wall
RJ reader opinions: Money and politics; Malloy and Foley; the Berlin Wall
January 28, 2015 02:28PM
‘My final letter’
I’m not writing these words in anger, but truly in disappointment that the American voter responds so favorably to flagrant lies. This, in fact, will be my final letter to this page as I’ve taken on a “what’s the use” point of view. I am worn out, mentally and physically, with trying to maintain a fairly normal life here. I have been playing catch-up all my adult life and, on the surface, at times I did very good. I’m seriously slipping now, and find myself in nearly constant depression which was caused by both personal bad choices and spectacularly bad luck. My vision, from here (taking my age in consideration), is bleak as I consider the outlook of those just elected (nationally), and would rather take a nap than engage in anything. I have wonderful family members and friends — and, with pride, I say I was born and brought up in Meriden.
Eric Cotton’s column (R-J, 11-9) was right on target, although I disagree about has-been Chris Shays. I would point the fickle finger of blame at the head honcho, Jerry Labriola. I am convinced that tired old man does not know what he is doing, loves two-time losers, and needs to be removed immediately. If I had the time (which I don’t, unfortunately), I would be active in the state GOP, and campaign to replace him myself. It will never happen, though, because Carol (wife) and I will retire in the next few years, and we are definitely going to leave Connecticut, probably heading back to the much saner (and less snowy) Buffalo, New York, area. Which brings us to a point about the Connecticut electorate: People who have lived here all of their lives are clueless that most other states have lower taxes and living costs, so Malloy is free to raise taxes yet again, which he will do first thing in 2015. I did send a letter to Chris Christie, thanking him for making 5 campaign appearances in support of Tom Foley, but explaining that Connecticut is a hopelessly left-wing state, and that Foley, a weak candidate, ran a subdued campaign, depending too much on Christie to campaign for him.
Finally, a word about the future of Connecticut: I think that Connecticut may turn into a welfare state, with even higher taxes — supported by the southwest corner (Fairfield Country).
Aaron Woien, Southington
Money and politics
A recent R-J editorial (11-9) states that the party coming into power in January should pay attention to voters instead of implementing a far-right agenda. This view ignores the fact that most current politicians have no interest in the opinions or welfare of their constituents. Their only interest is billion-dollar donors and getting the money to get re-elected.
For the last 20 years, politicians have been serving the interests of the rich and depending on their money to keep them in office. And unfortunately it has worked. How else can you explain the re-election of legislators when their approval rating has been in the single digits for the last 2 years? This is the reason we have no national background checks for guns, even though 80 percent of citizens support it. This is reason we have no raise in the minimum wage, when it is wildly popular. It has been proven that if you can buy political ads to swamp the airwaves before your elections, you have a higher than 90 percent chance of winning. So these politicians do whatever makes the million-dollar donors happy to keep the money rolling in steadily.
Fortunately, there is a way to stop this wholesale legal bribery. If a majority of states call for a constitutional convention, we can amend the Constitution to say corporations aren’t people and that elections will be publicly financed. California and Vermont have already passed this resolution, and I hope that Connecticut will be the next state. We can never match the money of the Koch brothers, Adelson or Bloomberg. The policies governing all of us should not be determined by the privileged few. Please call your state legislator and tell them you want to take our democracy back by passing an amendment to get money out of politics.
Ben Martin, Wallingford
President Obama stated that his “policies are on the ballot.” His actions were also on the ballot. First: Benghazi tragedy where 4 Americans were murdered; the Obama administration did nothing to get them out of harm’s way. Second: Veterans Administration scandal — veterans have died while waiting for care. Third: The president was warned over a year ago about ISIS terrorist threat, but did nothing about it. Fourth: Keystone pipeline to create at least 30,000 jobs — stalled by the president. Fifth: Obamacare: millions losing their doctor — premiums to skyrocket. Sixth: President’s open-borders policy allowing children without medical screening into this country with viruses, causing sicknesses and deaths. Millions of illegals becoming citizens, hemorrhaging city budgets to pay for resources required (loss of jobs for our own citizens). Facts of Governor Malloy’s administration: Imposed largest tax increase in history of the state. Connecticut ranks 3rd-worst for cost of living. CNBC ranked Connecticut 5th-worst for doing business. Ranks 3rd-worst in property tax and 4th-worst in overall tax burden. The rest of the country “got it” by throwing Democrats out of office in historic numbers; unfortunately, our state full of “low-information voters” and “clueless voters” didn’t “get it.” If you, the uninformed voter, ever whine and complain about the direction of our country, living in Connecticut and its (property) taxes, look in the mirror. Blame yourself for being so clueless about both administrations. Then blame yourself again for being reckless in not voting wisely to oust politicians who spend the people’s money without conscience, and high taxes that are a result of such spending in Democrat-controlled cities, such as Meriden. To paraphrase a famous quote: “Don’t confuse me with facts, I’ve already made up my mind. I will continue to vote Democrat no matter how bad things are.” God help the clueless Connecticut voters.
Henry J. Krupa Jr., Meriden
The Berlin Wall
The Berlin Wall has been much in the news, with this being the 25th anniversary since it was taken down. It is certainly worth remembering as a pivotal symbol of the defeat of Communism in East Germany and the eventual restoration of all of Germany as a dynamic democratic nation. But the wall would never have been constructed had it not been for important events of the latter 1940s when the Soviets were attempting to push the west out of the city. How many people today remember that after WWII Berlin was divided into four sectors, governed by the four countries who had defeated the Nazi regime — the U.S., Britain, France and Russia? All Germany was also divided into four zones of occupation, to be administered by the same four nations. Berlin was left surrounded by the Russian zone.
But the Soviets were determined to control all of Berlin. In June 1948, they played hardball by blocking all land routes between West Germany and Berlin to starve us out. The west was determined to hold fast in West Berlin. And then President Harry Truman authorized what became known as the Berlin Airlift. The west, principally the U.S., flew into Berlin all that was necessary to sustain life, especially food and coal, to keep the western sectors fed and warmed. Every three minutes military cargo planes (“Flying Boxcars”) brought the necessities of life to West-Berliners — the “Berlin Airlift.”
Finally, in the spring of 1949, the Soviets gave in and reopened the land arteries. The U.S. had stood its ground! West Berlin began to rebuild and East Germans came flooding in; hence, the building of that notorious wall to keep East Germans from fleeing to the west. But it didn’t work, and twenty-five years ago the “walls came tumbling down.”