Other Views

Let’s try to be ‘first’ in

cutting spending

Dear Editor,

I see by the editorial pages of Alabama newspapers that we need to show &uot;courage&uot; and &uot;do the right thing&uot; by supporting the governor’s tax program.

We are last among states in the taxes we pay. Well, we all want to be first, don’t we?

Let’s quit fooling around with small increases and burden shifting and get right to being first.

Let’s see, to be first in property taxes, we could use California as a model.

A $200,000 house there would pay about $8,000 a year in property tax. We could be first with $8,500 &045; oh, what the heck, make it $9,000.

Income taxes? Well we should be right up there if we use New York as an example.

State, city and local income taxes added together should be about 40 percent of your income.

You smokers won’t mind paying $5 a pack for your cigarettes if you can be first, right?

Since we want to be &uot;first&uot; and show &uot;courage&uot; and &uot;do the right thing,&uot; we aren’t worried about fairness or even our ability to pay, we just want other states to know we are first.

After all, no one will want to move to Alabama if we aren’t first in taxes. Too bad &045; we can’t be &uot;first&uot; in cutting spending. Wouldn’t you love to see how that would work?

There is a difference between &uot;the courage to do the right thing&uot; and the equitable treatment of Alabama citizens by their elected representatives. Maybe those representatives should realize that before the next election.

Chuck Ewing

Birmingham

Anti-tax stems from selfishness

Dear Editor,

When a conservative Republican governor and the state legislature agree that the tax system in Alabama needs to be overhauled and taxes increased, a miracle has occurred.

I cannot understand those people who claim that we are too heavily taxed as it is.

The theory that the government is just an incompetent bureaucracy that will waste our money is fashionble, but false.

When one looks at the scandals and incompetence in business and compares business with government, the government actually shines.

And when one looks at all the SUVs on the road, the idiotic video games people watch on their computers, the fancy and unhealthy meals they eat, the gambling they engage in on Alabama and Auburn football games, etc. one cannot seriously hold that the middle class and rich are being ovetaxed.

I do not necessarily agree with how this extra money could be spent, but the plan put before the voters is better than the present situation.

The idea that the government is just a necessary evil rather than the supplier of things we cannot do ourselves is behind the low tax sentiment and stems from misinformation or selfishness.

Roy Lechtreck

Alabaste