Why I always stand for the flag
Today, I met one of our precious World War II veterans in the grocery store. It’s my practice to tell these heroes thank you whenever I can.
I said, “You’re one of our national treasures, you know.” His eyes sparkled as he responded, “That’s what they tell me, but there aren’t too many of us left!” When I offered that my dad served in the South Pacific, he told me he had served in Germany and that he was glad he was there and not the South Pacific.
“Well, neither one was a cake walk, was it?” I said, and he answered, “That’s for sure!”
Connecting with these amazing men and women never ceases to bring a tear to my eye and a deep gratefulness in my heart. As we parted, I said, “God bless you, sir, and thank you for bravely serving our nation.”
That’s why I stand for the flag. That’s why I will always stand.
Nancy Crabtree, Wichita
Increasing vs. restoring
In a recent mass mailing from Kansans for Kobach, those of us unfortunate enough to be on the list were subjected to the misinformation that the state legislature pushed through the largest tax increase in state history this year. There is a significant difference between increasing taxes and restoring taxes. The legislature acted to end the tax holiday of over 300,000 upper-income earners, which was bankrupting the state treasury, overriding the governor’s veto. And what was restored were rates that were lower than ones prior to the holiday. It would take a huge increase just for them to catch up with the rest of us.
What actually did increase for the rest of us back in 2012 and 2013, was the rise in the sales tax rate, which as we know still applies fully to food which makes it the most regressive tax possible. In addition, the elimination of the deduction for mortgage interest, real estate taxes and health-related costs, amounted to a measurable increase in state income taxes owed by all those who itemize their deductions.
So please, let’s get our vocabulary straight: tax restoration is different from tax increases.
Bill Zuercher, Hesston
America’s new farmyard
When politicians claim to understand agriculture, what they really mean is that they know how to slop the hogs ... to fatten them up for slaughter.
Today’s farmers are the global banking and corporate oligarchs who believe they are God’s gift to a hungry farmyard and that promoting their special interests will eventually trickle down to everyone else in the form of table scraps, which are called slop.
Today’s hired hands are the politicians and central bankers who work for, are paid by and thus concerned with the special interests of the farmers. Their job is to gather up the slop and feed it to the hogs, who have forgotten how to forage for themselves.
So who are the hogs? And what makes up the slop which the hired hands deliver and over which the hogs fight one another at the trough? You decide.
Maybe tax reform is just another way of managing the table scraps. Maybe it’s time to reform the farmyard so that everyone pulls their own weight and forages their own food. Let the hired hands eat the slop for a while and we will see if their thoughts about agriculture changes.
Bob Love, Wichita
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