Letters to the Editor

Letters to the editor on trickle-down economics, bus service, good vultures, Miracle Field, social workers

Still waiting for the last ‘trickle down’

Here we go again. Apparently the Republican majority in this state doesn’t remember the experience with supply-side economics – fondly called “trickle-down” – that we experienced in the ’80s with the Reagan administration. Or maybe the Republicans do, and they want another infusion of cash into their pockets courtesy of the working middle class. Gov. Sam Brownback has used the same primary adviser of that fiasco for his guidance in crafting this fleece of the hourly wage earner.

What this boils down to is that we, the state government, throw all of the money we can back to businesses large and small in the form of tax breaks in hopes that the majority of it will “trickle down” to the wage earners in the form of more and better-paying jobs. This theory could work except for one small detail – human greed.

Additional money in the pockets of business owners generally means one thing – increased profits with no more effort or expense.

I hope the people of the great state of Kansas will wake up before these legislators bankrupt Kansas much in the same manner that Congress has done to America.

I can’t speak for anyone else, but more than 30 years later, I am still waiting to “get wet” from my first experience with “trickle-down” economics.



Need grid system

How about a 1 cent sales-tax increase, like we used to build the downtown arena, to pay for part of the operating costs of a new grid-system bus service? Bus systems across the country don’t pay for themselves. They are simply a convenience to the citizens and something that is really necessary to cut down on pollution.

A grid system would be much better, eliminating riders from having to go downtown to transfer to go anywhere. That is why it takes so long to get anywhere.

Extending the hours of service to 22-24 hours per day, seven days a week, would really benefit our city. It would allow people to get to work and back on all three shifts, while making it more cost-effective for people to ride the bus instead of driving. It also would give all our citizens and the tourists visiting Wichita the opportunity to participate in many events on weekends and late at night.



Don’t cut buses

The ultimate goal of a transit system should be to connect major places of employment; educational and medical facilities; shopping hubs; religious, sporting and cultural venues; and other places where all people, including those with disabilities, go to work, shop and play. It provides independence for nondrivers, the elderly and people with disabilities, and can open up employment opportunities otherwise unavailable to nondrivers.

A transit system benefits the entire community by reducing congestion and air pollution. However, a transit system that will be attractive to riders cannot be financed by fares alone and needs a definite and permanent stream of funding.

It is unfortunate that our elected officials are doing just the opposite – cutting money for the transit system that will prevent all of the above from being possible. It is clear that Wichita is on the road to destruction of the current transit system.

The League of Women Voters Wichita-Metro studied the rapid transit system, and supports a grid system and a sales tax to maintain and perhaps even improve the current transit system of Wichita.

We urge the Wichita City Council to consider all these points.


Study chairwoman

League of Women Voters Wichita-Metro


Selective vultures

A pretty damning letter concerned the insensitive and unethical greed of all those Wall Street vultures, keying on the intentional destruction of Air Capital favorite Hawker Beechcraft, which is now enduring bankruptcy (May 9 Letters to the Editor). But wait – wasn’t one of those vultures the same one that bought out part of Boeing Wichita and established prominent, efficient Spirit AeroSystems, which still resides here in Wichita and has growing employment? How do those vultures decide which of our unfortunate companies to devour? Maybe we ought to forensically investigate the carcasses.



Field of dreams

I attended the enthusiastic and heartwarming opening of Miracle Field at Orchard Park (May 6 Local & State). Every great idea starts with a dream. In this case, the dream was that of Lainie Armstrong, founder of the For Love of Chance Center and the energy behind the Miracle League of Wichita. The Miracle League of Wichita is a baseball and T-ball program for children with special needs ages 5-18. It’s on the Web at miracleleagueofwichitaks.org.

The baseball field is specially designed for people with disabilities and was superbly built by Lafarge. It has a rubberized surface easily used by players using wheelchairs, walkers or crutches.

Opening-day ceremonies included speeches, of course, and acknowledgment of all responsible for building the field. This included the city of Wichita, which contributed $300,000 from city capital improvement funds; the Via Christi Children’s Miracle Network, which donated $66,000; and the national Miracle League.

While the large crowd acknowledged those who contributed time, materials and money, their most enthusiastic applause was for Lainie Armstrong. It was her dream that got the ball rolling. Now the 4-year-old league has a home of its own.



Caring people

I recently had an opportunity to thank in person a couple of our state social workers. They are amazing, caring people who deal with terrible situations on a daily basis. They deserve all the respect we can give them. Their funding has been cut back, and yet they are still trying their best to help all kids.

In the past, I had issues with our state reporting system. I am still not sure it is fixed. But I have enough faith in these women to now ask people who suspect child abuse to call 911 first and then call the 24-hour hotline at 800-922-5330.