Letters to the Editor

Letters on welfare restrictions, North Carolina model, Keeper unkempt

Why restrictions only on welfare?

The Legislature placed restrictions on how the poor spend their federal assistance, even though there is no evidence to indicate it was a problem. The poor can no longer spend public assistance money on cruises, tattoos and strippers. (No one had ever explained how the state will determine whether the dollars being spent came from a poor family’s public assistance or from selling blood or any other income source.)

Regardless of the practicality of enforcing the law, the point is that the state is telling the poor the “appropriate” use of public assistance. So why weren’t the same restrictions that were placed on welfare recipients put on the 330,000 farmers and owners of LLCs and Subchapter S corporations who no longer pay state income tax?

The tax break was given to encourage hiring new employees. It is clear, based on the state’s job statistics, that the money is being spent on things other than hiring new workers. We can only surmise that the owners of these businesses are wasting money on cruises, tattoos and strippers.



State model

Tax-and-spend is the progressive and media solution to the Kansas state budget. The conservative experiment started just a few years ago is vilified and condemned in a liberal discussion. But there is a great success story that will not be found easily in the media.

North Carolina conservative tax cuts slashed areas paralleling the Kansas cuts. North Carolina’s revenue and job growth has been phenomenal and is a huge success. They also eliminated the estate tax. A North Carolina business may rely on these rates when planning the future – no backpedaling, the state a stable entity. But North Carolina did one thing Kansas did not do – cut spending, cut spending and cut spending some more.

The preferred story line is tax-and-spend in Kansas.



Keeper unkempt

We recently visited the Keeper of the Plains plaza with a friend from Denver. We’d done some bragging about “the pride of our city,” so she was looking forward to it.

Along the walk to the bridge, two dead trees signaled what we were about to see. Around the plaza, the landscaping was shameful. The native plants and grasses the city touts on its Keeper website were either nonexistent or overgrown.

Most disappointing was the exhibit itself. The “o” was missing from the word “warrior,” the audio describing the history of the Plains Indians wasn’t working, and the background needed painting.

This was a sad commentary on the city’s care and concern for its public attractions. Not only does it leave a poor impression on visitors, it’s an enormous disappointment for those of us who live here. Factor in that the Keeper/river renovation is only eight years old, cost $20 million and is considered our premier exhibit, and the substandard maintenance is inexcusable.

When Wichita’s stewards appear to care so little, is it any wonder that citizen surveys conclude that many of us have little pride in our city?



Letters to the Editor

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Phillip Brownlee at 316-268-6262, pbrownlee@wichitaeagle.com.