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Platteville Journal Letters to the Editor for Sept. 26
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Skubal responds

Mrs. Parsons wrote a very nice letter in your Sept. 12 issue in which she apparently disagreed with some of my opinions. In reading her letter, I was warmly reminded of being at a family gathering. I don’t know Mrs. Parsons, however, she sounds like an educated individual who has formed her opinions based on what she feels to be of importance to her and her views of what direction she feels is best for this country.

This is precisely the point of my original opinion. I have no problem with opinions that are formulated with accurate information. My concern is that the majority of our electorate do not know the facts and that they are shielded from the hard truths by an obvious media bias. Let’s be very clear; no one can ever be completely certain that their views are of absolute purity. All any of us can do is form our opinions on as much information as we can find.

I may be wrong about this, but my guess is that Mrs. Parsons votes the same party line with regularity. This is just one suspected difference between us. My support of past candidates include names like: Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon (first term), McGovern, Carter, Reagan (second term), Clinton (second term), Gore, Bush (second term) and McCain. I have, and will continue, to avoid party politics. The freedom to vote with my own personal perception of common sense remains alive by avoiding the letter behind the name of the candidate. If I make a mistake in judgment, at least it was not the result of following the cow mentality of strict party affiliation.

Mrs. Parsons’ letter hailed President Clinton’s record, but neglected to admit that it was under Clinton that the seeds of future financial collapse were sewn. Establishing a policy to give home loans to people who could not afford to pay for those loans and then enhanced by Dodd/Frank and overlooked by President Bush, were all part of the policies that led to the housing collapse and bank bailouts.

There is plenty of blame to go around. With all respect, we need to cut the spin, the blame game and distortions of the truth. To get beyond all the blame crap, let’s just say that it is all Bush’s fault. I suppose we can even blame the additional $6 trillion debt under President Obama on Bush. That gets us to the main question; where do we go from here?

As a platoon leader in Vietnam, I learned many lessons that have served me well. One vital lesson was that when I was placed in bad circumstances, it wasn’t going to do any good to complain about who put me in that situation. The only things of importance were the decisions necessary to best improve or survive that situation.

I am certain that the answer is not bigger government. The fundamental comparisons of business and government are the same. The decisions and policies of what this government is currently doing would make them the most poorly run business in existence. This is not a scare tactic; this is the hard cold truth. No business or country can survive, much less thrive, with such fiscal irresponsibility. Look around the world at those countries who have gone down this road. The basic principles are the same.

Last week, this administration decided on a policy to simply print an additional $40 billion each and every month for however long it takes, with the hope of stimulating the economy. The idea that the rising inflation will solve anything is completely absurd. We just keep making one bad decision after another.

Mrs. Parsons and I agree that the tax code needs to be changed. Removal of loopholes is critical and would result in those “evil” wealthy folks to pay a little more. Don’t be fooled; this will do nothing more than to scratch the surface of our financial problems. Be assured, much more fiscal responsibility will be required.

We also agree on the general concept of “common good.” Our difference lies in that the common good is not a short-term concept, but rather a long-term requirement. The long-term common good will not be achieved by creating unsustainable debt and an ever growing dependence on a failing government. What happens to that common good when we can’t borrow any more money? The best thing that we can do for the common good is to become responsible for our long-term future.

Carla Cooke also submitted a letter expressing her opinions. I have only one disagreement with her views. When she wrote, “Come on, we all know what’s going on here ... our society is changing from self-reliance to ‘give me stuff.’” The problem is that not enough of us know “what’s going on here.” We should, but we don’t want to face the truth.

After all the facts are spun to create the chosen image, we are all left with the same question: is this really the best we can do? I certainly hope not! If you would like to be a real hero, vote with the future of our children as your main concern.

Thomas Skubal

Cars vs. walkers

Walking home from work today, I was almost hit by a car. I walk to and from work and run errands on Main Street nearly every day, and nearly every day I have to worry whether drivers will be paying attention or obeying traffic laws. They often do not stop at the intersections until they are completely blocking the crosswalk. The safe, legal thing to do would be to stop at the stop sign, check for pedestrians, and then pull forward slowly to be able to see cross traffic, but every day I see drivers take the risk of striking a pedestrian, not stopping until they can see around the parked cars.

Today, when a car approached on Oak and did not slow down until very close to the crosswalk, I jumped backward, afraid they hadn’t seen me and weren’t going to stop before the crosswalk. I reacted quickly enough that, had they not stopped, I probably would have been safe, but the streets should be safe for everyone to walk unharmed - for people who may not be able to move out of the way quickly, and for children who do not imagine there are people who actually won’t stop before a crosswalk.

People need to realize that they take a very serious risk when they are ignoring stop signs and aren’t watching for people on foot. The “yield to pedestrians” sign at the top of Main isn’t doing much to affect drivers’ behavior in the Main Street area.  Maybe more signs need to be put up, or maybe the police need to keep a closer eye on the Main Street area.  Either way, something needs to be done to make it safe to walk and shop on Main Street, and I want to urge all drivers to please stop before stop signs, not in the middle of the crosswalk.

Carla Holloway
155 N. Water St., Platteville