Letters to the Editor (February 20, 2013)
ATF aka The Population Control Bureau
We pay people (lobbyists) to bribe our government officers to keep America’s three deadliest sins legal in this country.
Alcohol — In one year’s time we can have up to 150,000 alcohol-related “road kill” deaths alone, not counting overdose deaths due to alcohol poisoning. We cut down on alcohol-related car accident deaths thanks to MADD, Mothers Against Drunk Driving.
Tobacco — This drug kills more people worldwide than any other disease. Nicotine in this country, at one time, directly or indirectly killed up to 300,000-plus in one year. This number includes tobacco deaths such as lung cancer and other cancers like mouth, throat, etc. This does not include the fire deaths caused by careless smoking.
Firearms and guns — Mass murderers are the NRA’s favorite people. Thanks to them, gun sales skyrocket, which means more money in their pockets. How many more 6-year-old children need to be murdered before the NRA is satisfied? Gordon Gekko from Wall Street stated, “Greed is good.” The good food of evil is greed. The number of gun-related deaths is staggering. These numbers are ongoing on a daily basis, many are killed by guns. President Obama is a start, but it is not enough.
The powers that be will not allow us to know the real numbers on all three of the sins. When you add greed to this deadly mix, the fire will burn forever.
Again, Philadelphia leads the nation’s top 15 cities in the ratio of murder deaths vs. population.
Philadelphia tax deadbeats must pay
Philadelphia has an opportunity to bring some much-needed revenue into the city. We simply have to collect on the taxes that this city is rightly owed.
For too long, delinquent taxpayers have been dodging their responsibility to pay their taxes. They are a part of the financial problems the city faces.
I’m pleased to see that Mayor Michael Nutter has announced a plan to collect those taxes. At a time when public schools are hurting, firefighters are working without a new contract and a property tax overhaul is about to impact many residents, it’s about time we think clearly on how to bring in revenue without burdening our citizens and services.
I’ve been calling on the mayor to implement a tax collection plan on delinquent taxpayers for quite a while because it’s a huge problem. It’s outrageous that we’re sitting on a potential windfall of $500 million and have done nothing to collect it, and I’m relieved the mayor is finally on board with this common-sense idea.
I’m also pleased to see that City Council, and Councilman Bobby Henon in particular, is taking it seriously and will soon hold hearings on solving this problem.
I look forward to hearing how Mayor Nutter implements his plan and will continue to work for policy that ensures tax dodgers pay what they owe.
State Sen. Mike Stack (D-5th dist.)
Patronize contractor Dennis Davis
In stringing Christmas lights around the deck, I discovered the flooring was separating from the rail and felt loose when standing on it.
I found the receipt, which indicated the deck was installed eight years ago, and I hoped the contractor was still in business.
To my surprise, the contractor called me right back, scheduled an appointment and kept me informed if he could not make a certain day.
After he fixed the deck, I asked, “How much?”
His response was, “Merry Christmas!”
He made this widow’s holiday worry-free and has proved to me there are honest contractors around.
I hope he gets a lot of business from this letter.
The contractor is: Dennis Davis 215-638-2535. He is a general contractor.
Democrats have run Philly for too long
The letter concerning Traffic Court by stay-at-home mom Shannon Lindsay, Esq., (She wants to fix Traffic Court mess, Feb. 6 issue) was very good.
The real problem is power breeds corruption, and in Philadelphia, the Democratic Party has been in power more than 60 years.
There must be a change.
Nowhere to hide for sex molesters
In light of recent developments concerning priests and the sexual molestation of young boys and the convictions of such individuals, the judge, jurors, and the district attorney should be highly commended for their tolerance and insight.
Their ability to judge these matters objectively and not emotionally with a clouded mind should be noticed as outstanding.
Individuals who commit such acts, regardless of who they are, should not have the ability to hide behind a uniform, or a building with a cross on top of its roof.
They have to be held accountable for their actions and behavior.
Mum should never be the word for such actions that damage young children mentally and force them to serve a different life sentence other than prison.
All consumers have credit rights
All consumers should know their rights, but do not.
We are living in a country that lacks education about credit rights.
Laws are being passed without the consumer even knowing about them. Did you know that our Congress is trying to pass a law where the merchants charge another fee when a consumer pays with their credit card?
Just say no, and pay cash if this happens.
Attorneys are freezing bank accounts illegally, and people think they are in a corner.
Know your rights, use them, and you will see you know more than the system and not let it get over on you.
Consumers, it is time we reverse what is going on in our country, just by getting educated. As a consumer advocate, I am working to change laws that are not right for the people, and stop bill collectors in their tracks.
Please visit my website at www.pearlpolto.net.
Possible reasons for shredded newspaper
OK, I’ve been pulled into the mystery of the person who shreds the pages of the Times and lets them blow all over Bustleton.
I have lived in the Northeast all my life but recently moved just outside the city. I do, however, still work in the Northeast and must have my weekly copy of the Times, which is delivered to my work place.
Most of my family members still live in the Northeast, and I am feeling very apprehensive over this matter. The last letter I read referring to a “crazy lady” responsible for this act of terror leads me to wonder what sad, sad issue set her off.
Was it that one of her children was a better basketball player than the child featured on your sport page?
Did she send a picture of her grandchild in too late to make it into the issue before his birthday?
Is her husband a Philadelphia fireman who has been screwed over by Mayor Nutter because he is pouting over not getting their support in the election?
Is she a teacher who lost her job due to the cutbacks and now she has to shop at Walmart?
Or did she try to adopt a kitten who was already gone when she got to the shelter?
I wonder what she is thinking when she cuts it (according to the last letter with scissors). Does she feel sad if she cuts off the head of the picture of the greyhound wearing the surgical mask in the advertisement that appears weekly or does she methodically cut around the cute puppy pictures?
Lastly, I wonder what she is thinking as she releases the shredded words back into the neighborhood that produced them.
Personally, I feel a kinship toward her and hope she seeks the professional help she must need so she can once again enjoy just waiting and reading the Times for what it is: A great community paper that tries to give all members of the community a voice regardless of their views of the issues.
Affirmative action is unconstitutional
It’s that time of the year when blacks along with their white, liberal puppets will shout about the wrongs done to the black community and never the other way around.
They’ll cite MLK Jr.’s speech of how “they want to be judged by the content of their character and not the color of their skin,” but yet they support a racist and unconstitutional policy known as “affirmative action.”
This is a policy where lower-scoring blacks get government jobs over higher-scoring whites. It sounds like they want to be judged by the color of their skin. Also, they shout for diversity when it benefits them and them alone.
We have a black mayor, police commissioner, fire chief, school superintendent and City Council president. Where are the white, Hispanic and Asian faces?
It’s time for others to demand the fairness of “the best candidate gets hired” and not the hypocritical hiring of blacks solely because of their skin and not their character or qualifications.
Questions about abortion and littering
I would like answers to these questions that a lot of our government officials are for.
If people who are all for abortion, are they sad or happy that their parents did not think like them?
If politicians vote for bills that are full of pork, do they care that they are putting our nation deeper in debt?
If the Boy Scouts have gay men involved, if they do anything like some priest did, would the Scouts be sued the same way the church was?
If filmmakers make pictures with a lot of foul language in them, do they talk like that in their everyday lives and in front of their children?
Corbett transportation plan is no plan at all
One issue that has been neglected for far too long by Harrisburg lawmakers is transportation investment. Unfortunately, Governor Corbett’s transportation plan that was unveiled on Feb. 5 does little to change the status quo.
Pennsylvania has an unmet transportation funding need of $3.5 billion, which is set to grow by $90 million annually between now and 2020. With a looming transportation crisis, the Corbett transportation plan will provide only half the funding necessary to meet this need, with no mention of how the remaining multibillion-dollar funding deficit is to be filled.
At a time when older bridges are going longer before being replaced, and one out of every four miles of Pennsylvania highway is in need of repair, half a solution to our transportation problems is simply not good enough.
In and around my legislative district, there are more than 35 bridges that are structurally deficient or obsolete, meaning that they no longer effectively function or serve the needs of the area where they’re located. Given that these are bridges that you and I drive over every day, this is unsafe and unacceptable.
As our needs as a community change, it is important that our roads and bridges change as well. Over the last 50 years, Northeast Philadelphia has seen significant population growth and an increase in car ownership, and yet the average structurally deficient bridge in the area I represent is 59 years old, with nearly a half dozen deficient bridges having been built prior to the 20th century!
The longer we put off investment in transportation, the longer we delay creating new jobs in construction and other fields to perform the work our roads and bridges require. The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials estimates that for every billion dollars in transportation investment, 35,000 jobs are created. For perspective, if the revenue lost through a $1.65 billion tax break lobbied for by Gov. Corbett for Shell Oil was invested in transportation, we could create almost 60,000 jobs over the next 10 years across the Commonwealth.
When I think of the many Pennsylvanians who are unemployed and roads and bridges that need fixing across our state, I ask myself why we aren’t doing more to come up with a more complete solution to our transportation problems.
As an elected official, I think offering fewer multibillion-dollar corporate tax givebacks and using that revenue to pair Pennsylvanians who are looking for work with jobs on badly needed transportation projects would be a good place to start.
Given the price of underinvestment, I hope that the governor will take the opportunity over the next several months to meet with stakeholders and come up with a plan whose scale matches the task of keeping our transportation infrastructure intact. Philadelphia and Pennsylvania taxpayers who depend on our roads and bridges to live and work deserve no less.
Brendan F. Boyle is the state representative for the 170th Legislative District, representing neighborhoods in Northeast Philadelphia and Montgomery County.