Your Views - Letters from Our Readers; Opinion
Description of Elmbank block was incorrect
I read the article Missing mother found dead in her car trunk (Jan. 9) concerning the condition of the 4400 block of Elmbank Avenue by Christine Byers. I am president of our block unit and am incensed by her comments.
Our block does not consist mostly of crumbling homes and vacant lots. The majority of the homes on our block are occupied. They are occupied by families.
We have numerous properties that are being rehabbed. We have three vacant lots on the entire block that we worked with the city to have those homes razed. We have a home that was occupied and had a fire on Thanksgiving morning. The owners have not had time to repair the building.
We have an active church in the middle of the block, Gregg Chapel AME Church. In the spring, one of the lots (vacant) has a flower garden that is maintained by homeowners on the block.
We may not have homes like those in the county, but we have pride in the property that we own. The entire block is very disturbed about the incident that happened here, but people outside of our community commit these heinous acts and visit them on our quiet street.
We are all very hurt by what happened to the young woman whose body was discovered on our block, and our sincere sympathies go out to her family.
Saundra White St. Louis
More revenue is still needed to balance federal budget
In George Wills Jan. 10 column (A rally cry to tame spending), he continues to make his ongoing mistake that merely restating a Republican position makes it true, final and binding. Not so! Wills latest example is repeating that They cannot now increase government revenues as a share of GDP because Republicans insist that the Taxpayer Relief Act closed the revenue question.
According to data obtained from the Tax Policy Center, in the last three years of Clintons presidency and the first year of Bushs presidency, where there were revenue surpluses, revenue averaged approximately 20 percent of GDP and spending averaged approximately 18.5 percent of GDP. 2011 revenue was 15.4 percent of GDP and 2011 spending was 24.1 percent of GDP, after the downward trend of the Bush years into Bushs Great Recession and the slower-than-hoped-for rebound of the Obama years due to the obstructionism of Republicans. Clearly, revenue must be raised and spending must be lowered by approximately 5 percent of GDP in the next several years to balance the federal budget. This must happen in concert will the extreme need to increase jobs. These issues are all short-term issues that must occur gradually, whereas reducing the federal debt is a longer- term issue.
More difficult issues to address must be on the table. They include:
(1) Closing many loopholes and special interest exemptions in the tax codes on big corporations and rich individuals.
(2) Eliminating the salary cap on the Social Security tax.
(3) Instituting a minimum individual tax for people making over $1 million a year.
(4) Instituting a minimum corporate tax.
(5) Funding teams to investigate fraud at all levels in Medicare, Medicaid and the Childrens Health Insurance Program.
However, the most essential task is for Congress is to raise the debt ceiling immediately with no strings attached.
Paul M. Jeannot Foristell
No chance that Obama would reduce deficit
This statement by the White House press secretary would be laughable it wasnt so tragic. Jay Carney said, The presentation of the question was, we will only raise the debt ceiling if this and that happens, and he continued. Lets just remember what danger awaits the pursuit of that path. We can and should negotiate over how we continue to reduce our deficits in a balanced way, be we should not play chicken with the full faith and credit of the United States.
The most striking thing about that statement is that the so- called White House press corps didnt immediately have the man tarred and feathered for saying something so void of meaning. …