The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

November 20, 2013

Budget solution

Daily Item

---- — All of the tax loopholes and excessive subsidies are the result of campaign support by industry lobbyists and the wealthiest Americans protecting their investments.

The problem is money; we don't have enough to operate federal and state governments and pay for the subsidies and the tax loopholes that make the 1 percent richer and the middle class poorer. The cause obviously is government. That is the people who we have elected to take care of us and govern in a manner that is in our best interest.

They seem to have been caught up in self-preservation and party ideology and forgotten why we put them there in the first place.

The solution is to restrict re-election campaign funds. With severe restrictions on the amount a candidate can spend on re-election, the lobbyists will be out of business and no longer able to buy laws and lawmakers and promote such freebies as big oil subsidies and paying absent land owner city farmers to not grow crops.

I think all top level people including the president, his appointees the representatives and senators and all their assistants should take a 25 percent salary reduction.

Also, reduce retirement by 25 percent and have them pay a large portion of their health care. They need to be part of the solution, not part of the problem as they are with their inflated self-importance.

Even with 75 percent of their present income they will be head and shoulders above the people whose jobs they cut, laid off and those who are casualties of the recession. These are the people who run the country, the same people who got us into this mess. Maybe they will think more about their actions if they are also financially affected. The money saved would go a long way in curing our country's ills.

Carlyle W. Westlund, Middleburg