Letters to the Editor for February 4, 2023

Simple steps to cut the deficit

We are faced with a budget crisis not seen since World War II and are facing some critical choices in the coming months. There are false claims of cuts in Social Security or Medicare. Congress should look at some of these items for budget savings.

There are 2 million federal employees with an average annual salary of $108,500 or $217.1 billion in wages. The impact of cutting the workforce by 10% puts us back at the FY02 level with 1.83 million employees. Congress must force the audit of all government programs for duplication of efforts. Here is an example, the Force Management Agency audited the Strategic Logistics Agency, which had 1,000 personnel; the audit found that 900 positions were duplicated in other activities. This activity was subsequently deactivated.

Use block education grants to the states and eliminate the Department of Education. The pullback of all remaining COVID funding from the states and government saves $500 billion. Why not reprogram the $400 billion of mandatory spending back to discretionary funding? My research shows that there are 45,000 half-empty federal buildings.

The federal government cannot determine who owns what or the number of people even though it's obligated to do so by law. How much would that save the American taxpayer with the sale of those properties? GAO cannot even sell some of the properties because they do not have a consensus within their agencies. These few simple steps can cut the deficit by $1 trillion, so why can’t Congress do it?

Drew Runde

Carson City

Excessive taxes

In 1787, James Madison in the Federalist Papers addressed excessive taxes: “The apportionment of taxes on the various descriptions of property is an act which seems to require the most exact impartiality; yet there is, perhaps, no legislative act in which greater opportunity and temptations are given to a predominant party to trample on the rules of justice.”

Mr. Madison, we have certainly seen your observation come true in the past two years.

Serge Duarte


Proud to be an American

Growing up and learning our history I was inspired by the Declaration of Independence, Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, MLK’s Dream, and the Pledge of Allegiance.

I am thankful the founders won our independence and codified our freedoms into law, won the Civil War, ended slavery, helped win World War I and World War II and won the Cold War. Americans are a compassionate and charitable people. I’m proud of all the good we have done.

And yes, there are times we failed the great principles of our founding. I agonized over Wounded Knee and other atrocities, but I am proud we are progressing. We’ve granted women’s suffrage and ended segregation and Jim Crow. I look forward to the day when the scourge of abortion and affirmative racism will also be regulated to the dust bin of history.

The current crop of race hustlers makes it difficult to sympathize with the terminally aggrieved. I share no guilt with those who believe America is irredeemable and systemically racist. It’s hubris to believe they can make America better by surrendering our God-given rights and the glorious ideals of the Declaration. The worldwide failure of their ideology is testament to the fallacy of their passions. Capitalism has lifted more people out of poverty than any other economic system.

The Constitution is not an impediment. It protects the rights of all Americans as together we seek the promise of our founding. America may not be perfect, but there’s no place better. 20 million illegal immigrants agree.

Mike Rodgick

Carson City


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