March 20 Letters to the Editor

Posted March 19, 2010, at 5:40 p.m.

Qualified Israel support

Those of us who truly care about Israel know that President Barack Obama is right to confront Israel over its approval of a new settlement construction plan in East Jerusalem. Settlement expansion undermines the prospects of peace. And Israel’s future is dependent on reaching a two-state solution.

Americans are smart. We know that peace for Israel is more important than the expansion of settlements. We also know that our interests are directly tied to Middle East peace and to Israel.

Peace talks will not succeed without genuine, sustained American leadership. All sides must know that there will be a price to pay for frustrating peace efforts. President Obama enjoys my support when he demonstrates such leadership.

The latest move by Israel to build on Arab lands just adds fuel to the fire of hatred and costs more lives. Every time Israel pulls a trick such as this we should remove some of our support.

John Browne

Calais

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A better health care plan

I strongly urge our elected officials to terminate the Pelosi-Obama health care bill. Rationing health care, creating a health care taxing authority, mandating taxpayers fund abortions and increasing individual Americans’ cost of health care to fund restrictive medicine is not the kind of health care reform Americans want.

This proposed government-run system would doubtlessly turn the world’s best health care into an expensive and inferior also-ran.

Congress, in a bipartisan manner, needs to start health care reform from scratch and work on medical lawsuit reform. Low income working Americans without health insurance should get help in buying private coverage through a refundable tax credit. Congress should establish simple guidelines to make policies more portable, with more coverage for pre-existing conditions.

All consumers should have equal opportunity to buy the lowest-cost, highest-quality insurance available, possibly through pooling and interstate marketing.

Congress and the president should be focusing on reduction of the deficit, while allowing free market solutions to stabilize the economy.

James Jacobs

Calais

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Shell game not working

Please allow this 80-year-old lifelong Maine Democrat to weigh in on the state of the state. To say I’ve never seen anything like this economy since the Great Depression, as well as how our state is not coping, would be an understatement.

Since Maine is already one of the most heavily taxed states in the nation, I agree with Gov. John Baldacci and the Legislature that it would be bad to raises taxes. It would be bad for business and bad for the people of Maine. But seriously, whom do they think they are fooling?

The good governor tells us he is not raising taxes, yet costs are consistently passed back to the towns, which already are struggling to maintain services, and in some cases survive. What’s the difference between a tax and a fee? Only that elected leaders can say they didn’t raise “taxes.”

Let’s get real and either make the cuts in state government we need to help our towns, or consider an emergency, temporary 1 percent raise in the sales tax to pay for educating students in kindergarten through grade 12. Maine taxpayers are already paying dearly for education while a number of Maine schools are labeled as “persistently low achieving.”

Obviously, the current shell game is not working.

George Arnold Roach

Smyrna Mills

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LePage is the one

I recently heard candidate for governor Paul LePage speak at the Republican caucus in Lewiston. All the Republican candidates were present and spoke individually and then as a group took questions. LePage won the straw poll by a huge margin, which was taken at the end of the event, receiving more votes than all the other candidates combined.

I first met Paul last summer at a forum in Waldoboro organized by Constitutionalists of Maine and was impressed with his common sense approach and basic, sound, philosophies and am planning to vote for him in the primaries June 8. It is critical that we make choices that reflect our beliefs and values as to the direction we want our beloved state of Maine to go and for me, Paul LePage is the best choice.

He has a proven track record as mayor of Waterville (lowered taxes and raised the towns S&P rating) and general manager of Marden’s. Experience running a business with actual political experience speaks volumes.

I do not feel attorneys and other lifetime bureaucrats make the best leaders and Paul is neither. He is not accepting clean election funds because the state is broke, but rather is relying on donations from the public. This shows integrity, responsibility and the ability to make the right choice even if it is a difficult one.

I urge you to do the research, go listen to LePage, and help determine Maine’s future.

Paula G. Sutton

Warren

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Abortion provision

Once again, we Americans are being kept in the dark concerning major legislation coming from the White House and Congress. For what other reason than to be deceptive is the information kept hidden until the dawn of voting on it? The Obamacare bill is a very dangerous and costly one for us.

Tell Rep. Mike Michaud to vote against it.

The most pressing issue to me is the abortion funding through whatever method is instituted, although the leadership contends that it is not an issue.

Once again, I reiterate that the plight of over 52 million unborn babies in the last 37 years has left America without the potential moms and dads, doctors, nurses, lawyers, teachers, businessmen, garbage collectors, congressmen and congresswomen, state legislators, etc., many of whom would have been having children (keeping our schools open?), keeping our health care costs down, keeping our economy strong, our churches filled, and yes, perhaps adding to the prison population.

Some so-called intelligent people have come back to my single-issue stance with, “well, you would have saved rapists, pedophiles and criminals.” This answer is true, but certainly does not bode well in the overall picture of more than 1 million babies per state having had their lives snuffed out since Roe v. Wade of 1973.

If life is not treasured and defended, then the consequences are very dire as is obvious today.

Sharon I. Rideout

Hermon

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