United voters should back the renewal levy
To the editor:
Having been residents of Hanover Township Columbiana County for many years, my husband Tony and I have always supported and worked for any project or improvement that would benefit the community and residents of our area. Tony is gone now but I will continue to work for and support projects that would affect us and all the residents of our community.
One such project is the United Local renewal levy which will be on the May ballot. United is an excellent school and busy preparing our youth for their place in the world. This levy will be used entirely for the upkeep of the building itself not for teachers' salaries or benefits or anything that does not last more than five years.
Items needing attention include window replacement, new buses, outside LED security lighting, new fire alarm system, boiler replacement, technology upgrade and text books.
If anyone has any questions or concerns they only need to go to the school and get the correct information and satisfy in their own minds how the money will be spent. This renewal levy will not increase property taxes as certified by the county auditor.
We are fortunate in this rural area to have such a quality school system and I will continue to give them my support.
MARGARET A. "PEG" LEONE,
Columbiana leadership needs to redirect energy
To the editor:
Between the upcoming water rate increase, the never ending electric rate discussion, and the way it seems the city council would rather spend its time lambasting the new mayor, (read mayor's methods called into question on April 5 by Katie Schwendeman from the Salem News, Morning Journal) one can't help but wonder what is going on there?
For anyone who wasn't there a few weeks ago, the mayor was actually called out for wanting to get voicemail. A member of council didn't think such a thing was needed. ?That alone speaks volumes. Anyone who lives in the city really needs to get to these meetings.
On April 22 they are holding a meeting that was set up specifically for a third party company to tell you that the rates being charged are justified for the electric. Why? If there was no problem, why the meeting? Right? I do not need a lesson in city economics. The bigger question is what is the real benefit served by the current way we get utilities. Anyone who has questions, and I know you are out there, come to the meetings, I ask that you fill the building up on the 22nd. The way we get power is not cheaper that any other method. What's the point of this method if it is nothing but a revenue stream? The last time I checked the city of Columbiana is not a for profit enterprise.
If by chance every effort is made to break even when it comes to the rate we are charged, and there is no surplus at any time generated by this system, than I would be happy to be told that I am incorrect. I know that council and the manger work hard to do a good job. But from the citizens' viewpoint, the energy focused on things like not needing voicemail, and adapting Roberts Rules of Order seems like people are more bothered by the new mayor not "toeing the line" than getting things done for the benefit of all in the city.
Eliminating Chief Wahoo rankles longtime Tribe fan
To the editor:
Alex Sockalexis was a Penobscot Indian who played first base for the American League Cleveland Spiders in 1897-99. He came from Notre Dame University and was very popular with Cleveland fans. He died in 1915 and the ownership of the team decided to honor him and his race by changing the team name from the NAPS (named for the famous player-manager Napoleon LaJoie) to the Indians.
In every interview with his descendants, they all said how proud they were that all American Indians were honored. Do you know why that race is called Indians? When Christopher Columbus (Italian) landed in the "New World" he thought he was in India and therefore called the natives Indians.
But now, as our once great country in deteriorating with something disgusting called "political correctness" the name Indian and our beloved Chief Wahoo are considered by a very few to be demeaning. According to those espousing the putrid "political correctness" the name Indians is wrong and should be Native Americans. Also, they say, the image of Chief Wahoo is demeaning.
The cowardly ownership of the team is bowing down to this tiny minority and strongly considering to get rid of Chief Wahoo as the team mascot. The new cap has replaced Chief Wahoo with the letter C.
I would wager that if a poll was taken among the three million people of NE Ohio that at least 95 percent would want to keep Chief Wahoo. Growing up in Cleveland during World War II, I've been an Indians fan for 70 years. I'm sick of this small minority who want the majority to always pacify them. What these few should do is get a job so they have something productive to do. And, I'm also disgusted with those in the majority who are afraid to say no to the agitators for fear of being criticized by the few, including the spineless politicians.
The ownership of the Washington Redskins have repeatedly said it will never change the name or mascot.What can't the Indians ownership do the same? You go to a game and you see a group of four or five agitating for the change and the news media builds it up, but never shows a picture, and try to make us believe that it was a great big throng. They are the ones who probably never buy tickets to a game and don't even follow sports.
So, if you pass by my home you can see my big Chief Wahoo stand up in my front yard, or if you are around town and you see someone with an Indians jacket with a big Chief Wahoo on the back and a cap with the chief of the front, that's me.
Chief Wahoo is a century old part of our heritage and if the ownership abandons the name and mascot they will have destroyed that heritage. Remember, the name was given to the team to honor a whole race of people. The protesters don't even realize that they want to destroy the very thing they want!
I hope the ownership does the right thing and satisfies the overwhelming majority by keeping the name and mascot. It's what the majority and those who buy tickets to support the team want.
Long live Chief Wahoo!
DR. MICHAEL J. TRAINA,
America tumbles among the economically free
To the editor:
I just returned from an economics conference (talk about a wild time - spend two days rubbing elbows with a couple hundred economists).
The keynote speaker was Dr. Joshua Hall, co-author of the widely acclaimed "Economic Freedom of the World" annual report. The survey, produced by the Fraser Institute, a Canadian think tank, is a 284-page report which measures the degree of economic freedom in the world's nations.
The startling fact that comes to light in the most recent edition of this report is that over the past several years America has fallen from number 2 to number 17 in the rankings of the most economically free nations of the world. Most Americans believe that we are the freest people on the planet. That America is the pinnacle of freedom that the rest of the world aspires to emulate.
That is no longer the case. We have now fallen behind the socialist nations of Finland and Denmark. We are behind the middle eastern countries of Bahrain, Jordan, and the United Arab Emirates. The U.S. has even fallen behind the Estonian Soviet Socialist Republic, which is now known as the Republic of Estonia.
Taken directly from the introduction of this report is the statement: "The cornerstones of economic freedom are personal choice, voluntary exchange, freedom to compete, and security of privately owned property;" and, "Protection of persons and their rightfully acquired property is a central element of economic freedom in a civil society. Indeed, it is the most important function of government."
Property rights are the foundation of an economically free society. They are also the foundation of what we know as the United States of America. The primary reason the colonists revolted and separated from Britain was to attain property rights.
How do I know this??B?y reading the Founding Fathers:
"The moment the idea is admitted into society that property is not as sacred as the laws of God, and there is not a force of law and public justice to protect it, anarchy and tyranny commence. Property must be sacred or liberty cannot exist." - John Adams
"Private property and freedom are inseparable." - George Washington
"The utopian schemes of leveling (redistribution of wealth) and a community of goods (communism) are arbitrary, despotic, and, in our government, unconstitutional." - Samuel Adams
"With all these blessings, what more is necessary to make us a happy and prosperous people? Still one thing, fellow citizens-- A wise and frugal government ... shall restrain men from injuring one another, shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government." - Thomas Jefferson
"To take from one, because it is thought his own industry and that of his fathers has acquired too much, in order to spare to others, who, or whose fathers, have not exercised equal industry and skill, is to violate arbitrarily the first principle of association, the guarantee to everyone the free exercise of his industry and the fruits acquired by it." - Thomas Jefferson
"Government is instituted to protect property of every sort nor is property secure under it [government], where the property which a man has in his personal safety and personal liberty is violated by arbitrary seizures of one class of citizens for the service of the rest." - James Madison
One point Dr. Hall repeatedly made was the concept that economic freedom and economic inequality have a direct negative correlation. The freer we are economically, the wider the gap between those that excel and those that do not. And the only way to close that gap is through government force and that force causes the demise of economic freedom. The redistribution of wealth is the antitheses of the property rights our Founding Fathers risked their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor to acquire for us.
In the most recent State of the Union address, Barack Obama emphasized economic inequality. Obama has stated: "That's why reversing these trends (economic inequality) must be Washington's highest priority. It's certainly my highest priority."
With all of the problems confronting our country, economic inequality shouldn't make the top 100. In the first place, it isn't a problem. It is a byproduct of our freedom. In a free society you are free to achieve as much as you are willing and able to acquire. You are free to work as hard as you choose to get ahead. You are free to pursue whatever occupation suits your fancy. Financial success is a function of the choices an individual makes, not a result of some grand conspiracy to maintain a permanent underclass.
Does this freedom guarantee your success? No. But neither does it restrict you from attaining success. Do you want to give up freedom and the inalienable right of private property to codify into law a system that essentially attempts to reduce jealously?
Redistribution of wealth schemes, at their least insidious, are meant to placate the have nots, who have been taught by the public education system, politicians, and the media that they are incapable, without the aid of the government, to climb the economic ladder.
Obama likens himself to Abraham Lincoln. That comparison is a joke.
Lincoln once said: "Property is the fruit of labor. Property is desirable, is a positive good in the world. That some should be rich shows that others may become rich and hence is just encouragement to industry and enterprise. Let not him who is houseless pull down the house of another, but let him work diligently to build one for himself, thus by example assuring that his own shall be safe from violence I take it that it is best for all to leave each man free to acquire property as fast as he can. Some will get wealthy. I don't believe in a law to prevent a man from getting rich; it would do more harm than good. So while we do not propose any war upon capital, we do wish to allow the humblest man an equal chance to get rich with everybody else."
Obama's teleprompter would self-destruct if those words ever scrolled across the screen.
What differentiates the economically free from those who are prisoners of an economic system is not that everyone finishes the race at the same time, but that everyone starts at the same time. What I mean by this is that government isn't standing on the head of one individual while giving a boost to another. This is known as equality of opportunity as opposed to equality of result.
Remember when Joe Biden said: "You cannot go to a 7-Eleven or a Dunkin' Donuts unless you have a slight Indian accent."
This wasn't just another moronic faux pas from the fool who is one heartbeat away from the most power position in the world. What he said was profound, although he is too dense to know it. These immigrants, many of them with only the shirts on their backs and unable to speak English, are able within few years of arriving in the America to own a business and become relatively rich. They didn't ask for a government handout or blame society for their circumstance. They didn't sit on their arses bellyaching and complaining about the fact that others are rich and they are not, asking politicians to fix the discrepancy. They worked hard, lived frugally, and reinvested in their businesses. They took advantage of the freedom that is available to every American to build a new and prosperous life.
Why are they able to accomplish this when millions of native born English speaking Americans cannot? Perhaps it is work ethic, individual responsibility, and an appreciation for those gifts that are available in America to those that are willing to take advantage of them. Perhaps our so-called passionate society has created and enabled a dependency on handouts instead of instilling a drive for self-dependence and industry. Perhaps the act of removing the shame and ridicule associated with accepting charity has made it painless to do so. After all, it is easier to blame the successful for our failures than to turn our failures into successes.
If we truly want to close the distance between the rich and the poor we need to tear down the barriers that stop people from climbing the economic ladder. Rid ourselves of the 70,000 page IRS code that empowers the politicians to pick winners and losers not based on merit, but on political ideology and allegiance. Close the alphabet soup of regulatory agencies packed full of unaccountable bureaucrats that dictate every facet of our lives and make it virtually impossible to be an entrepreneur. And force the government to abide by the same laws of the land and the laws of economics that it demands its citizenry follow.
Whenever you hear politicians, bureaucrats, or the media decry income inequality as one of our greatest social ills, remember, what income inequality signifies is that we are a free people. Free to exploit what little remaining opportunity the government hasn't sucked out of the free market system. We do not want to "fundamentally change" our country into one that is driven by the impossible prospect that government can eliminate jealousy from our culture by redistributing wealth and as an unintended (or perhaps intended) consequence, destroy the last vestige of our economic freedom.