Letters to the Editor

Letters on Davis, Roberts, Orman, health care compact, corporate taxes, online sales tax, Dillons closing, poopy park

Davis has vision for public schools

The following letter was submitted by Roger Elliott, Andover; Janet Sprecker, Derby; Gail Jamison and Kevin McWhorter, Goddard; and Jeff Davis, Connie Dietz and Lynn Rogers, Wichita:

If Gov. Sam Brownback contends that record reductions in per-pupil funding are not a detriment to maintaining or advancing student achievement in Kansas, he has his blinders on. How can he tell if the sun is really shining in our state?

More than 450,000 Kansas public school students depend on proper decisions aiming to provide for the ultimate learning experience every day. Annually, another high school class of students graduates; they move on equipped with 12-13 years of academic opportunity. They can’t come back and take a refresher course, for another graduating class of students is waiting in the wings.

It’s time to provide assurance to these students that they are and always will be the priority and not an afterthought. As local school board members past and present, we have always placed our students’ well-being as the priority. As unpaid volunteers, we are elected to decide what is best for our young people. We are adaptable by necessity to the ever-changing environment affecting the resources and eventual achievement outcomes.

We believe that Democratic gubernatorial candidate Paul Davis can provide a clear vision, ongoing commitment and essential energy to advance Kansas public schools and remove the doldrums of indifference and shortsightedness plaguing our schools under Brownback’s leadership.

As members of Republicans for Kansas Values, we urge your support by casting your ballot for Paul Davis and Jill Docking on Nov. 4.

Use both wings

I was born a Republican and remained loyal for 60 years. Then a decade ago I noticed that the robins in my tree had better sense than some of our elected representatives. You see, the birds all know that they must use both wings to fly. A bird flapping only one wing just flops around, never getting off the ground. Even baby birds know to use both wings to fly.

On the other hand, as Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., struggles against independent candidate Greg Orman, all Roberts’ fellow politicians seem be saying to “use your right wing.” Nobody has all the best answers, so I prefer a representative who will work with both the left and the right wings.



Need real change

A flimflam man is someone who passes himself off as someone he isn’t in order to gain your trust. Then, after he has your trust, he takes you for all he can.

Meet the Kansas flimflam man, independent U.S. Senate candidate Greg Orman. He tries to pass himself off as a centrist independent, yet everything I can find out about him is that he is either an Obama clone or will ride the political winds in how he votes. Have any of Orman’s campaign ads actually stated what he will do? None that I have seen. The ads just reflect the sentiment that many people have in that they want to see change.

Real change will come when a vote for Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., helps give Republicans a majority in the Senate and we can finally get votes on everything Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., has not allowed to come to a vote in the past six years.



Fight compact

The decision of the Legislature to take over Medicare threatens the economic and health security of nearly 500,000 senior citizens. There is a danger that the next Congress will approve the proposed interstate health care compact on Medicare, which Kansas is committed to join.

Senior citizens must fight back. We cannot stand idly by while our Medicare benefits are threatened. All of us must vote against candidates who would place these benefits in jeopardy. We must speak out loudly in our own defense.



No corporate tax

With the recent news that Burger King is moving its global headquarters to Canada, one of many corporations to do so because of our high tax rates, there is renewed interest in reducing our corporate income tax. It should be not only reduced but eliminated.

Income taxes, like all other expenses, must be included in the prices of a corporation’s profits and services, which means that consumers ultimately pay them. But it is even worse than that. Our impossibly complex tax code, with its array of loopholes, compels corporations to employ staffs of high-salaried attorneys and accountants to prepare, file and defend their tax returns – a major expense that adds no value to their products and services and that consumers also are forced to pay.

Because of our income tax, domestic companies are sequestering large amounts of foreign profits where they were earned, funds that would likely be transferred to the U.S. home offices if our income tax were eliminated. And we can scarcely imagine the near stampede of foreign corporations moving to the United States to avoid taxes in their home countries.

With no corporate income tax, there could be no repeat of such shenanigans as General Electric Co. managed when it gamed the tax loopholes to report no taxable income in 2010, a year it had record earnings.



Market not fair

Internet access has changed economic competition in the United States. The Internet has provided a new realm for businesses to make a profit from nationwide sales. As online competition grows, so should our laws and regulations surrounding the marketplace. Unfortunately, sales tax laws have not been updated in more than 20 years. If business practices are evolving, shouldn’t the laws that govern these businesses advance as well?

The Marketplace Fairness Act brings these laws up to date while creating a level playing field between online-only retailers and brick-and-mortar competitors. Currently, online-only retailers do not have to collect sales tax at the point of sale. Instead, a “use tax” is imposed, and the burden is placed on the consumers, who often don’t report and pay it.

Those who are adamantly opposed to the Marketplace Fairness Act argue about its implementation and negative implications for remote retailers. These points are moot when remote retailers can avoid collecting taxes on their sales and offer lower prices for consumer goods.

While Kansas has done what it can to address this problem, there needs to be a fix from Congress. Local retailers, especially our small businesses, are the backbone of our local economy.



Not so friendly

I live in the center of Wichita and have now lost my second Dillons. First the one at Central and Oliver disappeared, and now the one at Woodlawn and 13th.

Dillons claims to be serving its customers better, but that doesn’t include everyone. Instead, it is catering only to the suburban, middle-class population, because that’s where the money is. As a result, those who need transportation to get to these stores, who often have fewer resources, are left abandoned. Then we are sent coupons in an attempt to make us feel better about these changes.

I understand that profit is essential to keep a company afloat, yet I would hope this would not be the only consideration. Meanwhile, the city’s food desert grows larger. It turns out my friendly, neighborhood Dillons is neither.



Geese invasion

When did a major portion of the goose population decide to make Wichita a permanent home, rendering places such as O.J. Watson Park so full of goose poop that people can’t even let their children walk freely around the park?



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