Letters to the editor
Highlands TodayA 12-year plan
Published: November 9, 2012
Published: November 9, 2012
In virtually every conceivable manner, our country has been heading downhill at 70 mph for four years. Except for abolishing Obamacare and returning the three-fourths of a trillion dollars to Medicare, to abruptly turn would result in a fatal wreck.
A life-saving 12-year plan should be started with the goal of energy independence, balanced imports and exports, the total cost of law enforcement being shouldered by the law breakers, federal, state and income taxes being replaced by value-added taxes, 90 percent of all federal programs being returned to the states; a constitutional amendment requiring a balanced federal budget, and Social Security being used exclusively for those who have paid the premiums.
Obviously my proposals are incomplete, but these could serve as starters.
Bicycles are the answer
My heart goes out to the people up north who suffered through the awful storm, Sandy. We Floridians have gone through our share of storms for sure, but we stick together and help each other out.
What I saw in disbelief on the TV news were those couch potatoes up north who sat in their cars for hours waiting in miles-long gas lines. A better solution would have been for them to get on bicycles to get to their destinations. The hours they spent waiting in gas lines could have been spent bicycling to wherever they needed to go and, at the same time, gotten rid of that lard off their backsides.
As I stated in previous letters, I got rid of my car years ago and use the bicycle for everyday transportation in all kinds of weather. My motorcycle is for out-of-town use only. In 10 years of use, the bicycle has paid for itself many times over and I went from 260 pounds to 190 pounds as a side benefit. I learned from the gasoline shortages of the 1970s how useful the bicycle can be as everyday transportation.
The verdict is in. Congratulations, America — you won. Truth won.
Shameless voter suppression, super PAC money, the birthers, obstructionism, hatred, conspiracies, falsehoods, trash talk, dirty tricks, paranoia — all lost.
But this is not a time for gloating. It's the time for our leaders to work together.
The presidential campaign is just too long, too nasty, too costly and too frivolous. We should consider a six-year term with no second term. No sooner is the president elected than the business of their re-election becomes a top priority, immediately. Well, that just makes it extremely difficult for any elected official to concentrate on the real business at hand, which is the business of the American people.
It has been natural for the incumbent president to have his eyes fixed on re-election and all acts of the first term, directly or indirectly, in some measure affected by the ambition for a second term.
In 1787, the delegates to the Constitutional Convention voted to limit the president to one seven-year term. But because they knew that Gen. George Washington, the convention's presiding officer whom they all revered, would be the first president, the delegates relented, established a four-year term and did not restrict the number of terms Washington could serve.
James Madison famously noted that "if men were angels, no government would be necessary." Because presidents are not angels, knowing they can serve only one six-year term frees them to make decisions that are right for the nation but wrong for their re-election. And opposition solons like Mitch McConnell and John Boehner will have a more difficult time publicly justifying their obstructionism.
Is a six-year presidential term the solution to every problem that vexes the nation? Of course not. But is it a constitutional reform that merits serious public discussion? Absolutely.
Greta Lee Rassel