Bob Thomas: Answering letters to the editor
Thanks to you readers who take the time and trouble to send letters to our editor. Without your input, we columnists have no other way of knowing whether or not our stuff is any good and worth reading.Today, I’m going to answer two letters, one from Rosalee Barnwell Hinton concerning my “Joseph, Husband of Mary” column, and the other from Andy Harold about my “Hypocrisy Transcends a Commandment” column.First Rosalee: Rosalee, not being a Biblical scholar myself, as far as I can see you are dead right in all that you say except for one detail. You missed the word “legal” in my column which puts a different light on Joseph being Jesus’ father. I said that Joseph was Jesus’ legal father. He was recognized as such by Romans and the Jews. Of course, Jesus’ real father, his spiritual father, is God the Father. And you are correct in saying that Mary wasn’t divine nor is she worshipped as is Jesus. But she had a special relationship with Jesus that went beyond that of mother and son. There is no place in Scripture where Jesus failed to do whatever was asked of him by his mother, Mary. As I pointed out in my column, the miracle of changing water into wine at Cana, his first public miracle, proved that Jesus would always do as she asked. And yes, Mary knew she needed a savior but she had no idea that her savior was her son until he was crucified and rose again on the third day. One more thing, Rosalee: Roman Catholics do not worship Mary as some people think. Because Mary had such an extraordinary relationship with her son, we pray to Mary to please intercede with her son on our behalf. As there is no record of Mary ever being refused by Jesus, we Catholics feel we have a much better chance of our petition being granted by Jesus, through Mary. Thanks again, Rosalee. Go with the Lord.Second, Andy Harold: I have to ask you, Andy, who are we to demand that others pay their “fair share”? We simply don’t know what share others are paying. We do know that a small minority collectively pays over 90 percent of all federal income taxes. Now, if you’re saying that we should go after super-rich individuals and corporations that escape most, if not all, U. S. income taxes — as does General Electric — then I agree with you. That is why I wrote that our federal income tax code needs a complete overhaul.While I strongly believe in giving “job creators” special tax consideration, I did not advocate a “free ride.” But the object of any intelligent tax code should be to raise the most money for public purposes with as little hardship on taxpayers as possible. This can only be successful by creating more taxpayers by creating more jobs. This is why job creating companies should pay the lowest of all income tax rates while company owners should pay income taxes at regular rates. Finally, you say that we should concoct a new version of President Roosevelt’s New Deal of the 1930s. If you actually lived during that 1930s Depression and its “New Deal,” as I did, you wouldn’t say that. The New Deal experimented with every kind of make-work scheme imaginable: the NRA, the CCC, the WPA and many more too numerous for me to remember. All of these except the WPA (Works Progress Administration) failed miserably. The WPA did build some federal buildings all across the country, employing three times as many workers as were needed, but at low wages. It did manage to put food on many tables and the quality of work was acceptable.However, Andy, if you think the New Deal had anything to do with our finally breaking out of the Depression’s 30 percent unemployment barrier you are sadly mistaken. World War II is what finally got this country going again. The war machine’s deficit spending beginning in 1940, with lend-lease military equipment being sent to Great Britain, coupled with the draft, were the beginnings of full employment. Thanks, Andy, for writing. • Bob Thomas is a retired high-tech industrialist who later served on the Carson City School Board, the state welfare board, the airport authority and as a state assemblyman. His website is http://www.worldclassentrepreneur.com.