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NATION: Courage needed for cuts

| December 12, 2010 9:00 PM

I hope that I am not the only person to note the irony of companion stories in the Dec. 7 Press. On the one hand The Press covered events honoring those members of the "Greatest Generation" who served at Pearl Harbor and others of that generation who endured the hardships of the Great Depression and the sacrifices required of our country throughout World War II. In a companion story The Press highlighted the recent compromise fashioned by Congress and the White House to continue the income tax cuts for the wealthiest among us.

Those who expressed their concern for the debt that our country is piling up through their involvement in the Tea Party and other avenues this past November, should be pounding their desks in frustration, since this compromise to expand the deficit, comes scarcely more than 30 days after the Congressional leaders of both political parties and the president publicly acknowledged that they had "heard the message" from the electorate and would "balance the budget" and "stop wasteful spending."

The tax cut compromise (which includes cuts in Social Security taxes - increasing the deficit facing that program, expanded spending on unemployment benefits, and continued extension of the limits on taxation for estates exceeding $5 million) also comes scarcely a week after the bipartisan Presidential Committee on the deficit submitted a lengthy and well-considered list of realistic proposals to cut spending and increase taxes aimed at eliminating or greatly reducing this country's deficit over the next 10 years.

We ask for solutions from those brave enough to tackle a hard problem, and then do the exact opposite. Our elected representatives continue to represent not the bulk of the public, but the wealthy and certain special interests.

Those brave men and women who sacrificed and endured rationing, gas coupons, scrap metal drives, Savings Bond sales, victory gardens and limited access to sugar, flour and other commodities during World War II; and those veterans who have put their lives on the line in every war in which our country has been involved (including those currently serving throughout the world) must surely be amazed and dismayed at the self-interest, cowardice and venality consistently being displayed by those who profess to represent our "best interests" in Congress and in the White House.

LEN CROSBY

Post Falls

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