Hindu temple’s desecration evidence of intolerant America
Re the Oct. 24 article “Vandals desecrate Hindu temple”: America is continually retreating to its past ways.
With the ratio of minorities to whites in America becoming more [even], cultural change is going to happen. The question is whether people are going to accept and work with the change or repeal what is happening.
With the continued stereotypes against Muslims because of the 9/11 attacks, to our past of slavery, America has not been a country that integrates nicely.
In this situation, where minority groups are being attacked for their beliefs, who’s to say America will ever change its ways?
The biggest issue is if these minority groups continue to increase and eventually become a majority; will people be able to get past their prejudices and come together?
Our country cannot afford internal conflicts at this time, with the many other issues at hand. Is democracy important enough to be able to accept the new cultures and ideas?
This church that was attacked is just one of the many attacks on various cultural groups, but how can a country have a democracy if they do not value others’ beliefs?
Voters should boot out disrespectful pols
Schenectady will soon cease to exist due to the same old City Council that has been here for years, and their newer cohorts who’ve been handpicked by the old guard to vote exactly how they say.
Why would Mr. Vince Riggi have to leave a room where the [rest of] the council is meeting? Isn’t he part of the council? They say it was a caucus, and they have a right to do it; well, maybe it’s time for the people who pay their taxes in this city to hold the good ol’ boys accountable.
Maybe I should get out of this city and take my tax money with me, since I am one of the ones who pay my taxes on time. When the city threatened me with fines because my house needed painting shortly after my husband passed, I got a loan and put siding on the house. But at this time, I have abandoned houses on both sides of me that are falling down. I watched a person who purchased a house down the street have his whole house spray-painted, windows and all, that’s up to code! Both of these things bring down the value on my property.
This sneaky, behind-closed-doors stuff has to stop. Voters sent Mr. Riggi to represent them in the city, now this council is taking it upon themselves to exclude him. Why do we keep voting for the same old tired people with the same old tired ideas? We have no more money for taxes and fees — what don’t they understand about that? They cry “improve downtown”; what about the rest of the city?
We’ve become so brainwashed that we go to the polls and vote for the same people. Is a political party really that important? When did Americans get so scared of trying new things?
So go to the polls on Election Day and vote in anyone who hasn’t been in. Let’s take a risk and try something new. If someone is not working out for you, vote them out of office.
Stefan Ann Braun
Don’t have money to give? Then give yourself
Re Oct. 22 article, “Less-wealthy leaving money in their wills to charity”: In the past, charitable donations have generally been associated with the super-rich giving to the poor. People like Bill Gates and Warren Buffet donate millions to charities, leaving average citizens to think their donation do not mean anything.
This should not be the case, because all people have the ability to help those in need, regardless of income. Charity, along with public service, can take people much further than just money alone.
Public service creates bonds between people that can last a lifetime. Instead of just giving someone $20, you have the chance to create a friendship with them and help them get back on their feet.
Charity is a short-term solution and can help people in the present. Teaching people the skills they need to live and survive on their own, through public service, can last a lifetime.
Perhaps the best part about public service is that you do not need millions of dollars to participate!
“If you give a man a fish, he eats for a day. But if you teach a man to fish, he can eat for a lifetime.”
County should withhold services to city of Sch’dy
Interesting to note that the city of Schenectady is not going to [make the county whole for uncollected] taxes this year (Oct. 23 article, “Schenectady may ignore county tax bill). Why don’t they just secede from the county? I believe we will do well without them!
If the city is not going to pay county taxes, I sincerely hope the county will not provide any services to the city. I believe we can do as well without the city as we can do even if they paid the taxes they are supposed to.
What action is the county going to take to make up the deficit? Lower services to the remaining towns in the county?
Robert H. Boutier
Romney wasn’t a job creator, but a destroyer
Voters who might be taken in by Mitt Romney’s incessant bragging that he knows how to create jobs would do well to read the article by Peter Joseph in the Oct. 18 New York Times.
Mr. Joseph has nearly 25 years of experience as an investor and fund manager in the private equity game where Romney became extremely rich, operating as a financier. That is not a role for creating jobs — in fact it often involves eliminating jobs to create enormous profits for the company’s investors.
With Bain Capital, Mr. Romney was very successful at finding opportunities to purchase or invest in businesses using other people’s money. The most important step in maximizing investor profits is to improve the cash flow of the business — and that often involves cutting labor costs by reducing head count.
These same businesses, bought at bargain prices, are often saddled with debt and resold at huge profits. Some of them recover and prosper, but they may wind up in bankruptcy, with the loss of all the jobs. That’s about what happened to Contec — a Schenectady company bought by Bain Capital after Romney left.
Some other surprising facts pointed out by Mr. Joseph: A lot of public money, from pension funds, is used by Bain Capital to execute their “private equity” deals. These pension funds represent the savings of public-sector workers, who may realize little profit from the transactions.
Further, the enormous profits made by Romney and Bain Capital are taxed at very low rates, due to our regressive tax laws that favor multimillionaires.
Health account benefit cut in half by Obamacare
I wonder how many Obama supporters are aware of a change coming their way in January — conveniently after the election, of course.
To help pay for his Obamacare, flexible spending accounts, which are used to pay for medical expenses on a pre-tax basis, will be limited to $2,500 per year starting in 2013. There was previously no federal limit on these accounts. What does that mean for those of us who take advantage of them?
If your employer previously allowed you to defer $5,000, you will now be paying an estimated additional $875 in income taxes ($2,500 at a 35 percent federal/state tax rate).
Who does this affect most? Those with the greatest needs — chronic illness, children with special needs, etc.
And Obama claims to be for the middle class? Don’t believe it.
Keep views on global warming off Mini Page
I was reading the Oct. 20 Mini Page about “Cooking up a sugary treat,” right under where it says “Maple syrup producers are worried that if the climate keeps getting warmer, sugar maples may no longer thrive in the United States.” Why, after reading the nice article about sugar maples, does someone have to show their political agenda?
Per the Sans Model, global climate has large changes without human carbon dioxide emissions. There will be syrup made for many generations, so why even bring it up?
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