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Monday, Oct. 8, 2012: BIA prices, Searsport tanker and taxes

Pocketbook landing

There is nothing I would rather do than fly out of the Bangor airport. However while recently making reservations to Florida I found the airfare out of Bangor almost twice as much as out of Portland.

Well, obviously there was no choice except to travel out of Portland, even with adding the cost of travel to Portland, we were still saving well over $200.00.

In addition to the idea of a BIA reward program, I suggest contacting the airlines, Delta and US Airways and ask why fares can be twice as much out of Bangor as out of Portland. Maybe someone can get them to understand loyalty.

I will still always try to fly in and out of BIA, but not when it doesn’t make sense to the pocketbook.

Kathleen Huff


Truth be told

Recently one of our oft-heralded Maine weekly newspapers ran an editorial captioned “Entitlement Reform,” in which the paper took the Democrats to task for their misguided, loathsome, and super-sanguine indulgence of the poor and needy by claiming that our days as a viable society were numbered because entitlement costs were mushrooming out of control, and we were all surely going to Hell in a handbasket.

Entitlement costs, the article writer said, that were little more than 14 percent as a percentage of revenue back in the ’70s, were over 40 percent in 2005 and were headed, Ad Astra, to the stars. Now I am neither red nor blue, Republican nor Democrat, and will vote for whomever I think is good for America. If you have to distort the truth, it follows that you are probably not for your country but for yourself. So, I wrote a letter pointing out the underlying and misleading fallacy of their article, saying, to whit:

If entitlement costs were 10x percent in year A on a tax revenue of 100x, and those costs remained the same in year B but tax revenues decreased to 50x as a result of tax cuts to the super rich ($250,000 plus), then entitlement costs would have increased to 20x — doubled — as a percentage of revenue but in actuality remained the same.

Needless to say, the newspaper didn’t publish my letter. Maybe it’s me who’s missing a few marbles.

Phil Tobin


Whom do you trust?

Do you trust ConocoPhillips, the 12th largest corporation in the world or the grass-roots movement that is trying to save and preserve this beautiful 950-square-mile Penobscot Bay?

ConocoPhillips denies connection to DCP Midstream, but San Antonio Press has linked ConocoPhillips with DCP Midstream.

The Coast Guard is concerned LPG tankers might be in the channel at the same time that other tankers are coming in to dock. On Sept. 17, 2012 two tankers were awaiting Mack Point docking and another was docked. LPG tankers will highly interrupt normal shipments into Searsport.

Why is ConocoPhillips importing foreign gas when we are exporting our gas?

LPG megatankers will interfere with every walk of life that there is on this bay. They will interfere in every way of life; from roads to fishing/lobstering; boating; ferries; manufacturing; boat building; farming etc.

Every single person in or near Penobscot Bay will be affected. Do you really want to expose your children, family and the entire Penobscot Bay to this danger?

Nancy-Linn Nellis

Stockton Springs

Vote down loan

The $3.6 million bank loan under consideration by the Regional School Unit 19 school board for the Nov. 6 ballot should be voted down by the board or by voters.

The district is overspending its budget, already has a more-than $1 million revenue anticipation loan, has a $1.2 million increase in school taxes in the 2012-13 current budget, has raised school taxes over four years to completely replace reductions in the state subsidy, and increased the budget by $725,000 over last year — all paid for by stressed-out local taxpayers.

The new superintendent and board are starting out on the wrong foot by proposing this loan. RSU 19 should not be going into debt for operating costs and increasing school taxes $4 million to pay for it.

This is dangerous financial mismanagement and will jeopardize businesses like Hartland’s tannery.

Hadley Smith


Big budget debate

In deciding to expand our business recently, my husband and I had a lot to consider: staffing needs, availability of supplies, potential consumer demand, among many others. What played no role in the process was the marginal federal tax rate on net income over $250,000 — first of all, because like 97 percent of all small businesses, we don’t clear that much money in a year; and even if we did, we view taxes as a patriotic duty, not the single expense item that somehow drives all our business decisions.

This is all contrary to what we all too often hear in the public debate about whether to allow Bush-era tax cuts on the wealthiest Americans to expire on schedule at the end of this year. And yet it’s the reality of Maine small business.

What often seems to be forgotten in all the excessive reverence of entrepreneurs is that business owners are citizens, too. We drive on public roads, send our kids to public schools, and in general have an interest in a well-funded public sphere. It’s the healthy interplay of public and private that’s good for both business and society.

I think our two U.S. senators tend to understand this. Sen. Collins is to be commended for bucking her party this summer and voting against an irresponsible tax bill. I trust she and Sen. Snowe will follow a similarly balanced approach in the big budget debate that will follow the fall


Cary Hanson


Tax code sides

Isn’t it ironic that when Mitt Romney uses all the tax breaks carved out of our tax code by his lobbyist he is considered a smart businessman? Wise men nod their heads in agreement when Romney says, “I pay my taxes and not a penny more,” but the person who pays no federal income taxes because they use the tax breaks allotted them in the same tax code is considered a leech.

Kind of like when the big oil companies are given tax “subsidies,” but if my great aunt gets heating assistance its considered “welfare.” One is democracy at it’s finest, while the other is called socialism, depending on which side of the tax code you fall.

Bridget McIntosh


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