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Joe Heller | Green Bay Press Gazette

Election letters

Corporate interests count most to Pence

Our state is at risk of being sold to vultures. That is if Mike Pence – nonresident professional politician and betrayer of the American Dream – is elected as our next governor.

Pence not only is stone cold when it comes to compassion for the poor and disenfranchised, but he’s also the property of big business interests, the gluttonous greedy who worship money and power. This comes at the expense of average working families, many of which are struggling to get by.

Ask Pence to identify the big out-of-state interests – especially PACs – that have funded his campaign, the super-rich, both individual and corporate. You won’t get an honest answer. Pence doesn’t want you to know.

The Bible says that the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Jesus adds that we can’t serve both God and Mammon. Most of us have already put our trust in God. Pence, however, seems to have chosen Mammon.


Democrats abandon abortion safety

The legalization of abortion was originally promoted as a “safe” alternative to back-alley procedures. Then, for years, the Democratic Party platform said that abortion should be “safe, legal and rare.” Well, no longer. That little word “rare” has been deleted from its platform. Abortion itself is no longer a problem, just as long as it’s affordable.

But what of the desire to make abortion “safe” for the mother? Throughout the country, federal regulation of abortion clinics has been lax. Fort Wayne’s own abortion clinic provides neither handicap parking nor wheelchair accessibility. After invasive surgical procedures, women are forced to walk with great discomfort back to their cars. In such a situation, steps can be painful and perilous. Yet, when a complaint was filed with U.S. Department of Justice, the department responded that it would do nothing. So we see the masks coming off one by one.

The abortion extremists who have taken hold of the Democratic party do not seem to care whether abortion is safe or rare, just as long as it’s legal. Fifty million children later, we can do better.


School privatization disqualifies Bennett

The race for Indiana state superintendent of public instruction between Republican incumbent Tony Bennett and Democratic challenger Glenda Ritz comes down to how you feel about the privatization of public schools and standardized testing as the yardstick to determine its necessity. In my mind, once you put a corporation in charge of anything, suddenly profits become more important than the original mission statement, the general welfare of our children.

Bennett is pushing to speed up the timeline for state takeover of struggling schools. He’s also seeking legislative support for the power to take over entire school corporations. He has raised 30 times the amount of money for his campaign as his challenger, a large share of that from sources outside the state. Why are corporations and individuals from outside Indiana sticking their nose in our business?

Ritz states she would roll back many of Bennett’s initiatives, in particular the IREAD-3 test for third graders. Ritz, a library media specialist in Indianapolis’ Washington Township, says she’s seen firsthand the detrimental effects of the IREAD-3.

There is much more at stake this year than tax breaks for overseas corporations, subsidies for rich farmers, flag burning and gay marriage; there is the future of your child’s education. Vote for Glenda Ritz for Indiana state superintendent of public instruction.


Women slighted by both candidates

Regarding the question posed (in the town-hall presidential debate) by the young woman about unequal pay for equal work: What will you do to change the fact that women earn 72 percent of what men earn for the same occupation?

Neither candidate answered the action-oriented question. Neither candidate stated what steps or actions would be implemented to ensure women and men earn the same income for the same occupation. Disappointing.

My take-away from both candidates’ successful evasion of the question is that nothing will actually be done to ensure women earn what men earn when fulfilling the responsibilities of the same occupation.


Trade enforcement facts favor Obama

I know it’s not popular anymore to talk facts. But for those still interested in the truth, here’s one for you: The Obama administration has done more to consistently enforce trade agreements than any other administration in 50 years.

The jobs that have been saved and created by these actions are real and are being filled by real people. Part of the story of the resurgence in manufacturing is this administration’s commitment to it in all kind of ways.

So if you really want a jobs program, we have one. I can’t remember an election when the candidates didn’t claim to be hot to do something about China and trade. None of them has delivered until now.

Sure, there is lots more to do. But the facts are the facts.


Donnelly aligns with state interests

When I consider the options to represent us as Indiana’s next senator, I see a clear difference and one that raises my passion. Richard Mourdock’s proclaimed unwillingness to compromise and work with those who do not share his extreme views are not what Indiana needs. Instead, I have learned that beyond the sound bites about a few votes, Rep. Joe Donnelly has a rich history of fairly representing Hoosiers, reaching out to work with others.

As I watch the endless political ads on TV, I am struck by the fact that the parts of Donnelly’s voting record being maligned in fact reflect careful efforts to meet Hoosier needs. I remember visiting Donnelly’s office to talk about the importance of health care reform to Hoosier families like mine who are raising children with disabilities and special health care needs, and encountering in him a congressman working hard to include the voices of business and faith-based groups in reform that would work for all Hoosiers.

Similarly, his votes to raise the debt ceiling are not a deviation from his Hoosier frugality but instead a nod to the responsibilities of Congress to avoid allowing America to default on its commitment. These characteristics reflect the best of Indiana’s political tradition.

When I split my ticket this November to vote for Donnelly, I believe it will be my most important vote for the democracy I value.


Romney/Ryan plans just donít add up

We all know politicians lie for votes. But there are some lies that truly astound in their audacity. Every domestic policy offered by Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan is found through nonpartisan analysis to lead to the precise opposite effect as promised.

Care about the federal deficit? Romney/Ryan claim to, but through promising to cut tax rates across the board while only raising revenues equivalent to a fifth of that cost, federal borrowing will rise $4 trillion (at least) beyond its current unsustainable level over 10 years. Add to that a couple of trillion in new defense spending, and the repeal of the significant cost savings that come with the Affordable Care Act, and you have a playbook for a deficit explosion.

Romney/Ryan also like to talk about how much they value our health. At the same time, though, they promise to end Obamacare’s extension of private health insurance coverage to millions of Americans. Romney used to understand that lacking health insurance cripples not only the economic competitiveness of individual workers, but also overburdens the system at large (thus he birthed Romneycare in Massachusetts). That fact has not changed, but Romney has, in order to fit the extreme GOP script.

I am an Obama supporter, but it’s because I care about the economic vitality and competitiveness of our nation – and because I understand that Romney/Ryan’s promises are not only too good to be true, they are dangerously false and wrong for America.


Keep tax dollars circulating locally

Everyone thinks they pay too much in taxes. Yet few know exactly how much they paid in taxes last year.

Taxes come in many forms: Federal income tax, state income tax, Social Security and Medicare, property tax, CEDIT and COIT, wheel tax, excise tax, library tax, airport tax, school tax, federal and state gasoline tax, and sales tax are some of the many ways we all pay. Unless you keep detailed records, it is hard to put a final dollar amount on what one actually pays per year.

A large problem I see is that people don’t realize where their tax dollars go, nor do they care. Consulting dollars spent by the city and county are a thorn in my side. It is really a big thorn when people outside the city, county and state are paid to do this type of work. All local tax dollars should be spent in Indiana to keep our economy strong.

Voting for anyone who declares they will not raise taxes is dumb. Any politician who signs a statement that they will not raise taxes is dumb. Taxes are a necessary part of our way of life. I could not name all the things that are paid for by our taxes.

Vote smart and elect people who will not waste taxpayer money. Look for people who will spend those dollars supporting local businesses that hire our neighbors and ourselves.


Hateful billboards a waste of money

As veiled hate artists put their wares on display along the south side of U.S.30, we are mindful that the Whitley County Patriots aren’t really patriots at all.

Nasty, vile billboards disrespecting the president of the United States belong in the garbage. They are nothing more than a disgusting phenomenon born of those who exist merely on withering put-downs, desperate to keep their brand of contempt and disloyalty alive.

Our principles aren’t for sale. Money wasted on oversized, meaningless and ridiculous billboards would be better used to serve your fellow man and woman.

THOMAS A. McCLOUD U.S. Navy veteran Fort Wayne

Donít be misled by biased media

When will it end? Never, say I, unless the American People wake up and realize how biased the so-called “mainstream media” are toward the president.

The disgraceful pandering and preferential treatment Candy Crowley gave toward President Obama in the recent “debate” are a prime example. Even with the bias, Mitt Romney held his own.

News that is critical or less than flattering toward the president are conveniently overlooked, given “lip service” or buried on Page 6, second section. This happens time and again. But let a conservative make one tiny miscue and it’s breaking headline news – investigative reporting to follow.

Sad but true, when one philosophy (in the USA it’s the liberal agenda) is strongly favored by the mass media, that society is in for a rude awakening when all is said and done.

Don’t be lemmings, Americans; don’t be blind followers. Think for yourselves.

RICH POLK Fort Wayne