How about compulsory service for young people?

To the editor:

Time and again I see complaints about how young people and teens can’t find jobs. Decades ago, this was much less of a problem. Change is in the air, or at least I hope it is.

Back in the day, we had what was called a draft. It wasn’t a style of beer — it was military conscription. Local draft boards sorted through their geography and developed a list of those most eligible for the draft. If you were disabled, in school, or too old, you were exempt. During those years, many young people thought twice about dropping out of school, so they not only finished high school, but many went on to college.

Today we have too many young people with too much time on their hands and little if any disciplined home life. I don’t think bringing back the draft as I knew it will solve today’s problems. But I believe, just as officials in many developed countries already do, that a mandatory two-year national service program for young people who are no longer in school is the right thing to do.

With options ranging from serving others in a local setting, such as working in public hospitals, to a remake of the Civilian Conservation Corps cleaning up urban blight, and of course the military, everyone gets to repay society for their education and other privileges afforded them here in America.

For all those high school dropouts and gang-bangers who like to shoot at unsuspecting, innocent people, there will certainly be a place for them. Of course, in those places people actually shoot back. Why is it we always want to send our “best and brightest” into harm’s way?

Richard Rychtarik

Las Vegas

Fungible cash

To the editor:

How refreshing it is to know, from Jane E. Olive’s Friday letter, that there is a way to give money to the U.S. Treasury that would go exclusively toward lowering the national debt. I started to become excited, but then that pesky word jumped into my head: “fungible.”

All money is fungible.

Taking care of the debt for this out-of-control administration would be like taking care of the debt of a drug addict whose credit was cut off by the dealers. Does this solve the underlying problem?

No, no. Reducing this administration’s debt just means that they could argue for more borrowing (this is where “fungible” comes in) so they can fund programs to teach Chinese prostitutes how to drink responsibly, then expand it to Mongolians.

This argument also stands for not increasing taxes on the wealthy. I trust the wealthy to spend their money more responsibly, like on our girls here in Nevada — who already know how to drink responsibly.

Richard Vertrees

Las Vegas

All noise

To the editorial:

Your nitpicking June 23 editorial criticizing the 14 ideas Bill Clinton has for improving the economy is one way the GOP noise machine misleads the American people.

The right-wing machine constantly portrays society’s strongest forces as victims. Corporations making record profits are somehow inhibited because they pay too much in taxes.

The Review-Journal also reflects a Republican tendency: What you voice is less important than what you don’t say.

I heard good examples of both tendencies in a recent “telephonic conference town hall” with Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev. I asked Sen. Heller why, when oil companies are making record profits, they need $400 million in subsidies? He answered that when we need oil, we shouldn’t put a tax on them. Somehow eliminating subsidies to companies making unheard-of profits is suddenly a tax increase,

What Sen. Heller and the Review-Journal omit is that House Republicans voted to turn Medicare into a voucher system for future seniors. So ExxonMobil and Shell can’t afford to lose their subsidies, but future seniors can afford $6,500 out of their pockets yearly.

Similarly, Republicans and the Review-Journal reject the policies of Bill Clinton and Barack Obama and advocate returning to the failed policies of George W. Bush. Let’s see, Bill Clinton’s policies resulted in 22 million jobs being created during his presidency.

President Obama inherited an economy that was losing 780,000 jobs a month. Mr. Bush’s policies resulted in collapsing banks and the near destruction of our auto industry. Mr. Obama saved Chrysler, GM and millions of jobs. We are now creating 130,000 jobs a month. Returning to Mr. Bush’s policies makes no sense.

Ray A. Cohn

Las Vegas

Too much info

To the editor:

I cannot understand why the Review-Journal and the local television news programs announce in advance the times and locations of DUI checkpoints. If I have had too much to drink and know I have to drive through one of these checkpoints, I’ll change my route.

These should be kept under wraps. Let the drunks beware.

Gary M. Sunby

Henderson

Yucca fight

To the editor:

Finally, citizens can easily understand our nation’s true policy on nuclear waste disposal. Friday’s decision by the federal appeals court on the lawsuit by Washington state and South Carolina against Yucca Mountain clearly reveals that the plan is to keep the issue tied up in court until the waste decays to a safe level.

Or maybe until the sun burns out — whichever occurs first.

Dwayne Chesnut

Las Vegas

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