Sequester hardly the bogeyman Obama and his ilk painted it as

Saturday, March 9, 2013
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Sequester hardly the bogeyman Obama and his ilk painted it as

Let’s establish a perspective. First President Obama proposes sequester; then he and his surrogates spend a month or more fear-mongering and blaming the Republicans for the impending sequester.

Lies are spread, the White House says police, firemen, and air traffic controllers will be gone; U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan makes up a story about teacher layoffs, a congresswoman says 170 million jobs will be lost (more, of course, than exist).

Why create anxiety? Pressure to force Congress to increase taxes and spending! That way, we can follow in the fiscal footsteps of Athens! For now, we will happily fiddle as Washington burns!

A 5 percent spending reduction in discretionary spending (about $85 billion annually), properly allocated, will be hardly noticeable. If any necessary cuts started at the top — as common sense would suggest, rather than at the bottom, as our president suggests — then we would still have police and fire protection and open airports and schools.

That is a lot of money to remove from the economy, and there will be some effect, but keep in mind that we recently injected $65 billion extra into the economy as a result of [Hurricane] Sandy. So, the economy is pretty much even for the first year at least.

Perhaps the clearest indicator of impending economic doom created by reining in spending is the financial market. The fact that the Dow has been moving up since the discussion began (and now approaches a record high after sequestration) belies the doomsday predictions!

The 10 percent defense reduction may have a more significant impact on that sector, but this is tempered by the reduction in commitments to Iraq and Afghanistan.

It is likely that many, if not most, local politicians — [Gov. Andrew] Cuomo, [Mayor Jerry] Jennings, [Rep. Paul] Tonko et al. — will blame any fiscal problems (even the ones they’ve created) on sequester. Medicaid corruption, unfunded mandates, reduced state aid will all be the unfortunate by-products of the budget cuts. And the story will be spun that it’s all the fault of those damned Republicans (maybe not Bush this time, and certainly not he who proposed it)!

It is refreshing to see a more balanced allocation of criticism emerging; hopefully this will lead to more rational compromise!

Jay Murphy

Clifton Park

Corporal punishment leads to violent adults

Following the death of an 8-year-old bright and happy child, apparently at the hands of his custodial grandmother [March 3 Gazette], we must ask ourselves if it is time to end the practice of corporal punishment in our homes.

Raising children with nonviolent methods of discipline is not an impossible dream. Many parents have learned to raise respectful, happy children by using thoughtful, calm, consequence-based methods. Beating a child, spanking a child, slapping a child — any physical punishment — does very little to promote strong character, and in some cases is the impetus for creating an angry, resentful, dangerous adult.

Not every child who is hit will die, and not every child who is hit will become a violent adult, but virtually every violent person lived a violent childhood.

It is time to grow beyond a physically punishing family culture into a culture of nonviolence. Let this be the legacy of Sha’Hiim Nelligan.

Rev. Valerie Mapstone Ackerman


Third party needed to break selfish logjam

The recent fiasco in Congress over sequestration shows a critical need for a third party to represent the ideas of a majority of Americans with moderate political views.

Congress is broken and run by selfish elitists, who only want what’s good for their party. They hold their views with a sickening air of self-righteousness, and therefore they do not represent a majority of Americans.

Both parties are unreasonable, illogical and run by greedy and corrupt politicians. This is not true democracy. Until more voices are heard outside the two major parties, yours won’t [be heard], either.

It’s time the American people understand this, or the consequences will be a continuously dysfunctional government that will not do their only job, which is to serve the people. Until that day, the government will only serve itself.

Thomas Short


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March 9, 2013
9:22 a.m.
muggy says...

Sequester: a paltry $44 billion dollar reduction in the amount of increase in the federal budget. Consider this. The U.S. Treasury prints that amount every two weeks to pay for current services in the federal budget. It's dishonest to repeat and print Obama's and Tonko's lies, without a "reality check." The media used to "speak truth to power." Not anymore. They've thrown-in with Obama.

March 9, 2013
9:54 a.m.
janesjoys says...

Did you really think that the sequester would have an immediate effect? I will be interested in your letters in a couple of weeks if our legislators don't get theit acts together.

March 9, 2013
12:54 p.m.
wmarincic says...

It is a 2.5% cut on a budget increase for Gods sake. That is like saying I'm was going to spend an extra $100 on my credit card this year but now I'm only spending $97.50, do you have to be a conservative to see how stupid the is?

March 10, 2013
7:08 p.m.
smith says...

It's interesting to see the party that accused the republicans of campaigning on fear now has its president and his extreme left wing followers breeding fear.

March 11, 2013
7:07 a.m.
steveleary1 says...

The "cuts" are Government cuts. To make the numbers simple, last year we
spent $ 100. This year we wanted to spend $ 105, but because of the sequester
we have "cuts", so we can only spend $ 103. No place else but the government
does an increase in spending count as a draconian cut.

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