The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA


January 26, 2014

Don't ever cut military benefits

This letter is directed towards Republican voters residing in The Daily Item’s distribution area: Your 2012 vice presidential candidate, Congressman Paul Ryan, is a real piece of work.

He never had the guts to serve in the military, but he has the gall to cut the retirement benefits of those men and women who have served, and are serving our ungrateful nation. Anyone who has thanked a military service member for risking their lives in defense of our country, but who has not raised their voice in protest of these budget cuts should hang their head in shame!

“Thank you for your service.” Civilians love to say that to our men and women in uniform, but those words have been greatly cheapened by Paul Ryan’s projected cuts to our military service members’ retirement system.

Paul Ryan justifies his military retirement cuts by promoting the idea that the “private sector” has nothing comparable to the military’s “sweet deal.”

Well; let’s review that “sweet dea.” 1. Traveling to foreign lands so that people who hate the United States can try to maim and kill you. 2. Living away from your family for years at a time while those people try to maim and kill you. 3. On those occasions when you’re based stateside you move your family four or more times during a career so that our military can train the younger troops. Yup, that sure is “sweet,” nothing in the civilian sector nearly as “sweet” as that.

Before you throw your support behind Mr. Ryan with your silence take time to review the editorial column by Margaret Carlson (Dec. 20) about excessive government waste titled “Millions for romance and 3D pizza.”

Then think about the billions we spend annually to support children who are born out of wedlock to biological fathers who are never held responsible for the child support the government provides. Think about the drug addicts and malingers who draw billions from Social Security under the SSI and SDI programs.

After reviewing the fraud and waste in those programs think about the blood, lives, and tears our men and women in the Armed Services have given; and then ask yourself — did we get a good return on our military tax dollars spent directly on the troops?

Cuts in retirement payments owed to our troops? I’ve grown to expect that from a liberal and a Democrat, but I sure as heck was disgusted to see a Republican leading the way on this one.

Truly, thank a service member for their sacrifice by calling your Senators and congressmen and telling them to vote against the military retirement cuts. 

William Shirk, Selinsgrove

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