Boeing betrayed community, workers
The Boeing Co. has betrayed the future for Kansas.
This is not just a loss of 2,100 jobs. It is the loss of transportation of materials and goods; a loss of medical and dental insurance for Kansas families; a loss of research and development in new designs, new machinery, new materials and improved product safety; a loss of support for our schools, churches and charities; and the betrayal of a trust between Boeing and our community.
The nice-sounding platitudes do nothing to ease the betrayal of Boeing’s loyal and highly skilled workers and their families. This company’s bosses have no loyalty to our community, even though it has done everything asked of it to provide support for Boeing.
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As a frequent flier, I have always chosen to fly on Boeing planes whenever possible, often changing times and routes to ensure I would be traveling on Boeing products. I felt safer knowing these highly skilled and well-paid workers build the best airplanes in the world. And as a parent, sister and niece of dedicated members of our military, I always want the best and safest products for them. I cannot have that kind of confidence any longer in view of the ridiculous decisions made by the Boeing bosses.
Change tax policy
Boeing’s announcement reinforces how desperately Kansas needs a change in state income-tax policy. Now more than ever, Kansas needs to embrace Gov. Sam Brownback’s proposed tax reform legislation. The elimination of the state’s income tax would give wage earners an immediate pay raise and encourage economic growth in our state. With surrounding states such as Missouri considering income-tax elimination and Oklahoma already on the path to lower state income tax, it is critical for Kansas to create a better environment to do business before we lose out to neighboring states. Kansas has the 19th-highest state and local tax burden in the country with an economic outlook that is ranked 37th in the nation.
We need to elect state senators and representatives who will pursue aggressive tax reform and create an environment that will make Kansas attractive to businesses. Consider where Boeing has chosen to move these 2,100 Kansas jobs: Oklahoma, Texas and Washington state. According to the Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council, these states rank 13th, second and fifth, respectively, in the best tax systems. Kansas ranks 26th.
Now is the time to look forward – to pursue an optimistic agenda that focuses on growth and expansion, not one mired in the big-government, tax-and-spend policies of the past. This may not be an easy process, but we will persevere.
JOHN R. WHITMER
Taste of socialism
Boeing settled its difference with the union and the National Labor Relations Board and will stay in its new plant in South Carolina. Was moving the tanker work to Seattle from Wichita part of the deal to pacify the Seattle unions? Probably.
But why is Boeing moving part of its work from Wichita to Texas? That goes back 30 years to when John Carlin was governor of Kansas. He spent more than there was and grew the government exponentially. No subsequent administration did anything to remedy the situation and get the state financially sound.
Texas is a business-friendly state. Kansas has not been since the 1970s.
Boeing is not the only company that will have left Kansas. But what about the companies that didn’t come? When companies were bailing out of California, they didn’t come to Kansas for the same reason. This is what happens every time legislators and governors believe they are smarter than businesspeople.
A taste of socialism, and humans get a self-destructive insanity.
Report good news
I was truly disheartened to read the article regarding Newman University women’s basketball coach Jaime Green and her supposed secondary infraction of NCAA rules (“Newman penalizes its coach,” Dec. 31 Sports).
The Eagle has barely written about the Newman women’s basketball program during the past year, despite the fact that our players average a 3.2 grade point average, the team is near the top in the nation, according to a USA Today poll, and has a great record. Why doesn’t any of that get into The Eagle? Newman University is located in the heart of Wichita, has had one of the best admissions rates in its history, and yet is almost overlooked entirely by The Eagle until now, when there is dirt to throw around. Why is that?
May I ask that The Eagle reconsider its coverage of Newman? The article regarding Green was about secondary violations of NCAA rules back in 2010. How does this warrant front-page coverage in the Sports section when our winning record doesn’t even make news at all?
ALLISON M. WOODS
Looking like Vegas
Mulvane is looking more like Vegas every day. It just opened another liquor store and a smoke shop to complement the new casino. I wonder where it is putting the brothel.