Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

February 1, 2008

In Your View — 02/03/08

It’s time to put partisanship aside

The Bush administration spent the first four years blaming Bill Clinton for everything that went wrong in the administration, even though Clinton’s eight years in office marked the longest boom in U.S. history.

The Clinton economy had expanded by 50 percent in real terms. Budget surpluses were projected for future years that totaled into the trillions-.

Additionally, Clinton's years gave us the lowest unemployment in 40 years, and the unprecedented economy created 15 million jobs. The stock market grew more than three times and created thousands of millionaires among middle class shareholders.

It's now time to look at the Bush legacy. The national debt has now reached more than $8 trillion and increases at a rate of approximately $2 billion daily. Huge tax cuts to corporations and the rich have greatly exacerbated the debt.

We’re engaged in a senseless war that had no basis at its start and is one from which we cannot now extricate ourselves. The Iraq adventure fueled a precipitous decline in America's image abroad. Bush opened the floodgates for Latin Americans immigrating to the US. and the myriads of related problems that now go along with it. Bush and others blamed the previous administration for many of his administration’s failures in spite of being handed a near perfect hand.

Unfortunately, Bush was supported by an enabling Congress. With congressional assistance, this administration is leaving a mess of gigantic proportion for the next administration and for this country.

Now is the time, more than ever before, to put aside partisanship and vote for the strongest candidate, no matter the party — one who will accept full ownership of whatever he/she inherits. We have to do it right this time

Kendall Felts, Catlettsburg

Cemetery responds to her complaints

I’m pleased to report that I’ve met with Dewey Akers, vice president of Saber Management from Indiana, owners of Golden Oaks Memorial Gardens. We spent 2 1/2 hours discussing all the problems and walking the grounds. He agreed that the things that had been going on there were not acceptable and they have been working very hard to get everything back the way it should be.

The graves have been filled in and repairs are being done to the damaged graves and markers. It looks very different today than it did just a week ago.

The maintenance supervisor promised that he’d be walking the grounds often to make sure the work was being done properly. There were several people who contacted me with problems that they had that had not been resolved. Those graves were found and promises made to contact those involved and do the needed repairs.

I feel confident that Mr. Akers is sincere in his promises and intends to see that the cemetery maintenance is maintained properly. I will certainly check the progress being made and take the necessary actions if these promises are not kept.

For those who may have thought that this was one woman’s complaint, let me assure you that is wasn't. There are many spots in the cemetery that are in very good condition and I'm sure if you visit those spots you could think that all was fine. All was not fine, but after meeting with Mr. Akers I feel that once again it can be. Golden Oaks has always been a beautiful cemetery and it will be once again.

Marcellia Lother, Ashland

Generation lived within their means

I find it funny that when Congress and even local citizens talk about rebates for senior citizens, it sounds as though someone dropped us out of an airplane at age 65 without a penny to our name and completely dependent on the younger working people to take care of us.

My husband paid into Social Security for 40 years; I contributed for 25 years. My husband passed away 14 years ago, so I receive his Social Security only.

The government didn’t give us anything; we paid for it. I'm sure if we had put the money in a 401K, we’d have had a nice retirement. There was a time when there was more money paid into the system than was paid out, but the government didn't put any excess money aside. It spent it.

We’re from a generation that worked and would rather have been shot than go on welfare. We didn't have two or three cars, a cell phone or charge on credit cards things that we couldn’t afford. We had six children. I stayed at home for 20 years, then worked for 20 years outside the home. We lived within our means,.

I live on Social Security and savings. I try to live on the interest on my savings in order not to run out of money.

I think the government should figure how much money I paid into the system plus interest and send me a check and I will give up my Social Security. According to the government people don't save enough and owe too much on credit cards. So what do they do? They take away from people (like senior citizens) to give it to people who will go out and spend it. Please don't save it or pay down debt. Is this the new generation?

Erma Bauer, Ashland

Politicians become hostages to donors

As long as the American people refuse to demand that we take “big money” out of politics and choose public financing of presidential campaigns, we will continue to elect politicians who become hostages to their big money donors.

It is a sad commentary that a candidate for president has to spend so much time raising huge amounts of money in order to compete. It is virtually impossible to adequately, honestly track the flow of campaign cash.

If “money is speech” continues to be the law backed by the Supreme Court, our country will forever be a broken democracy. One can be sure that the politicians who tout the “money is speech” line have overflowing campaign war chests and are pawns for big money special interests. They are usually Republicans, who primarily serve the rich.

For the sake of saving our democracy, the middle class and poor must stand up to the ruling plutocrats and demand their voices be heard.

Paul L. Whiteley Sr., Louisville

1993 Boyd class planning reunion

The Boyd County High School class of 1993 is planning its 15-year reunion slated for May 17. The reunion committee is currently seeking the addresses and phone numbers for graduates of the class of 1993. If you were a class member, please contact Teresa Davis Skaggs at (502) 331-9391 for more information.

Teresa Davis Skaggs, Reunion Committee Chairperson

Ceremonies to mark historic flag raising

There will be a ceremony honoring the 63rd anniversary of the flag raising on Iwo-Jima at 2 p.m., Sunday, Feb. 24, at the VFW Post in Flemingsburg. At 4 p.m. there will be another ceremony at the grave of Franklin R. Sousley, United States Marine Corps, who was one of the flag raisers on Mt. Suribachi, Iwo-Jima, on Feb. 19, 1945. He is buried in Elizaville Cemetery.

For more information on these two events, contact Don Dixon at (859) 277-2654, or the Flemingsburg VFW at (606) 849-2257.

Don Dixon, Lexington, and Rick Johnson, Flemingsburg