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Guest commentary: An open letter to every American


Fri, Jan 13th, 2012
Posted in Commentary

For years I have watched the political scene as the Democrats and Republicans blame each other for all our troubles. It seems the main goal of each party is not to solve America's problems, but to oppose each other. When an article on the subject of politics is read, it is very near the beginning where we can determine the party affiliation of the author, from which point on it will be scorned by the opposing party and praised by the corresponding party.

No matter your affiliation, I think the average person will agree we now have a government that is corrupt and broken, and it seems no matter who we elect, it only gets worse. And this corruption and fighting amongst officials is not reserved for the federal government, it has trickled down to the state, county, and local authorities as well. Don't believe me? Four of the past Illinois governors have now been jailed!

Our broken system is what inspired me to write this article. It is not a composition of answers, but rather, questions. It is not intended to shape your thinking, but get you thinking. It does not preach, it simply asks why. These questions have either been asked by me or others who are concerned about the direction our nation is headed. They are in no particular order. Maybe if we all think hard about them, we will finally come upon lasting solutions.

If our government is of the people, by the people, and for the people, why is the average person so frustrated with it?

When a corporation is in financial striates, it downsizes by removing non-essential personnel and cutting salaries and benefits. Why doesn't government?

Will higher taxes solve our economic crisis? Since I was a child I have seen taxes increased literally hundreds of times. Yet our government never has enough money. Are not taxes to date higher than ever in history? Yet is our country not broke and higher in debt than ever before? Why will raising taxes this time be any different than in the past?

Instead of raising taxes on the rich, how about lowering taxes on the middle class and the poor?

Why does our government stand by and do nothing as high energy prices make it difficult for Americans to buy fuel to heat our homes and operate our transportation, while oil companies report record profits? Yet they investigate Microsoft for anti-trust issues and force the phone company to break up to prevent a monopoly. Do the oil companies "own" some key government officials?
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Goodbye, so long 2011

Fri, Jan 6th, 2012
Posted in Commentary

A new year has begun already. Where did the 2011 go? It was a year of sadness, tragedy, accomplishments and new beginnings. As we look back at the events in our lives, many of us seek to begin the New Year with well-meaning resolutions for change an ..... 
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This will be the year

Thu, Dec 29th, 2011
Posted in Commentary

I don't think I've ever been as proud to live in Harmony as when they recently decided on their budget. The council members should be commended for taking our budget issues seriously and cutting approximately 15 percent from the 2012 budget. Fillmor ..... 
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One Moment Please... The Secrets of Fillmore County

Thu, Dec 29th, 2011
Posted in Commentary

Another new year means we have another year of opportunities.

While a fluctuating economic climate can create uncertainty, people are still spending money. National retail results for December 2011 show a remarkable spike in consumer spendin ..... 
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One moment, please...

Fri, Dec 23rd, 2011
Posted in Commentary

Today marks an anniversary for the Journal. This newspaper, our last issue of 2011, closes another chapter in the history of our newspaper - now stepping into its 28th year.

One element of discussion at our company on a regular basis is the ..... 
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Emergency landing in Norway

Thu, Dec 22nd, 2011
Posted in Commentary

We had flown for about fifteen minutes at over 2,000 miles per hour after reaching our cruise climb altitude above 70,000 feet. We had just crossed into international airspace along the northern reaches of the Soviet Union. A bright orange light ill ..... 
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Is the ship sinking?

Fri, Dec 16th, 2011
Posted in Commentary

According to a poll by Hill Newspapers, 69 percent of Americans are willing to state that America is in decline. An estimated 83 percent indicate that they are concerned about the future of America.

If we were to look over our shoulder to t ..... 
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In defense of ethanol

Fri, Dec 16th, 2011
Posted in Commentary

Our Dad always told us that there is nothing worse than someone who "thinks they know something, but doesn't know anything." These words kept returning to me all week after I read the response to my commentary about the importance of the Renewable F ..... 
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Investment in America's infrastructure - One path to a better future

Fri, Dec 9th, 2011
Posted in Commentary

Let's face it, America has been short changing its future by falling behind in the development of necessary, innovative, modern infrastructure and the maintenance of existing infrastructure. According to a recent CNN documentary, America invests les ..... 
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