It’s not too late to make a deal
To the editor:
November 14, 2008 - 10:00 pm
To the editor:
When my family and I moved here in 1988, the Yucca Mountain Project was being lauded by many for the jobs it was bringing to Nevada, along with the billions of dollars spent locally by the federal government. Over the past five years or so, the state of Nevada has been spending millions of dollars trying to keep the country’s nuclear waste out of Yucca Mountain.
I have to wonder why anyone thinks that the unconstitutionally powerful federal government is going to just kiss $10 billion goodbye and roll over for our little pip-squeak state (“Waste site critics see opening,” Monday Review-Journal). I also can’t, for the life of me, understand why there is not some kind of negotiating going on to get something for the possible (believe whatever you want) groundwater contamination from this stuff in a million years.
The Army Corps of Engineers could bring water from the Columbia River right into Lake Powell. They could even get us water from the Great Lakes.
Then there is the proposed bullet train from Los Angeles to Salt Lake City, with a few stops in between, including Las Vegas.
When you consider the alternatives, I believe we should get something out of this besides a bunch of jobs and more tax revenue for the state.
Nicholas P. Gartner
Look to Europe
To the editor:
In response to the Tuesday letter to the editor by Dave Hanley (“Can’t lose”):
As a country, we are already experiencing a form of dreaded socialism: We transferred billions of dollars in taxpayer money to corporate welfare bums in order to rectify their failure to act responsibly in the so-called free market.
Our current system wholeheartedly protects capital interests and leaves labor victim to the whims and impulses of the unchecked free market. The vision of an egalitarian society is not utopian in the sense of being politically unachievable. In fact, a current stripe of socialism is working in Scandinavian countries. It’s called socialist democratic capitalism, and these countries lead the world in social justice, equality and human emancipation.
Mr. Hanley is espousing tired, old Hobbesian clichés which argue that proponents of a social-equality agenda are in reality power-hungry hypocrites who wish to set up their own totalitarian states in order to force people to be free in the Rousseauian sense. The writer is overly deterministic in proclaiming that the imminent end point of a more egalitarian society is totalitarianism.
We must give thought to the possibility of a solution to moderate a system oriented toward the satisfaction of the material needs of just a few. We need new and transformative avenues, in the spirit of Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal, to stress the possibilities of transcending the present national crisis affecting most of us.
Tax giveaway was illegal
To the editor:
I knew something was wrong, but because I am not a corporate tax lawyer, I couldn’t put my finger on it. I have been hearing about a $700 billion bailout for the banking industry for weeks now, and it just didn’t make sense to me.
Why do banks, the holders of billions of dollars, need a bailout? Don’t they have money? I have a friend who has lost $18,000 in her simple IRA this year. Is she going to get a bailout?
Then, in Monday’s Review-Journal, on the front page, I read an article by Amit R. Paley of The Washington Post about a tax law change and how it might have been illegal. What bothered me most about the change to Section 382 of the tax code is not the illegality of it. It is the fact that, according to an anonymous congressional aide, no one challenged the legality of it out of fear — fear that our unstable economy may become more unstable. Is that possible?
According to the article, now that Wells Fargo owns Wachovia, PNC owns National City and Banco Santander acquired Sovereign Bancorp, these banks can claim the losses of their new acquisitions and receive billions of dollars in tax breaks or even get a cash refund from the government. The Jones Day law firm calculated that Wells Fargo could gain about $25 billion and claimed that this change could cost the American people $140 billion.
But that is how the almost-former administration has ruled this country for the past eight years. It ruled through fear and intimidation. Hopefully, now that we have a new commander in chief on the way, Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., who is chairman of the Finance Committee, can finally pull everyone’s heads out of the sand and reveal the crookedness and illegality of this change.
And we, as taxpayers must stand up and scream that it was illegal and should be changed.