Congress is spending too much money.
One of Alabama's senators, Richard Shelby, recently joined only seven other Republicans is voting to reject a ban on congressional earmarks. Earmarks are those pork projects that cost American taxpayers billions of dollars every year. That is money we have to borrow so that Senator Shelby can divert money to projects like "Shelby Hall," a $40+ million dollar project to build a new Engineers and Computer Science building at my Alma mater, University of South Alabama. Although it is a noble cause, it is money the federal government should not be spending.
Here is the text of the letter I sent to Senator Shelby:
I was quite disappointed when I read that you were one of only eight Republican senators to vote against a temporary moratorium on congressional earmarks. Fiscal responsibility is a cornerstone of the Republican Party and your vote clearly is a contravention of the party’s ideals.
While many important and necessary projects may be funded through the earmark process, it hints at cronyism. Many of the projects simply are not in the purview of the federal government and should be left for the states and local municipalities to handle the funding. As the 1984 Republic platform states, “not every problem cries out for a federal solution.”
Your voting record indicates that you have a certain fondness for an abundance of pork projects. Please reconsider your position on this matter.
On a somewhat related matter, as a two time graduate of the University of South Alabama, I am well aware of the federal money (i.e. tax payer money) that you secured to build the new Shelby Hall. While I, like most other U.S.A. alumni, appreciate your efforts, I am concerned of the stigma attached to the name Shelby Hall. I urge you to sponsor legislation to forbid the naming of any facility, project, roadway, etc. for any person currently employed by the federal government, elected or not, if it makes use of federal funds. This is especially appropriate given the details of recent high-profile ethics investigations into congressmen like Representative Charles Rangel.
Gordon Moulton was quoted as saying, “We owe a debt of gratitude to U.S. Sen. Richard Shelby whose steadfast support over many years has made this facility a reality,” In reality, the debt is not gratitude, but is a debt owed by each an every tax payer in the United States that we will be paying for many years to come.
Since you have been recently re-elected and will not stand for election for several years, I hope my concerns will not fall on deaf ears.
T. Dale Watts, Jr.
There are several reasons that I vote Republican. I do not hold certain beliefs because they are attached to a particular political party. Some of these ideas are not especially popular even within the Republican Party:
- Abortion is murder. Simple as that.
- There is more to the first amendment than freedom of speech; however, it does not grant the right not be offended.
- "…endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness." Notice the Declaration of Independence does not guarantee happiness. Life is not fair and it is not the government's job to try to make it fair.
- Some people argue about keeping the government out of their bedrooms. I say: Keep the government out of my paycheck. The income tax is nothing more than a slave tax. We get to keep what the government decides we should. Income taxes should be replaced with consumption taxes. Don't tell me that consumption taxes are regressive. How many poor people spend $100k+ on a boat? If you buy expensive things, you pay a lot more in taxes.
- Eliminate the Department of Education. The federal government should not be involved in the education of our children. Education issues should be addressed at the local level. Parents should be able to decide what school their children attend. At the state and county levels, parents should be given vouchers for their children to attend the school of their choice.
- Eliminate the Department of Energy. During the Carter administration the Department of Energy was created because of the continued increase in foreign energy dependence. In this task the department has been a complete and utter failure.
- "That the people justly view with alarm the reckless extravagance which pervades every department of the Federal Government" This is from the Republican Party's 1860 platform. Some things never change.
- The federal government should not be looked to first to solve any problem. It is up to the individual first and foremost to try to solve any issue. From there look first to the local then state government. "Not every problem cries out for a federal solution." (1984 Republican platform)
- Your estate belongs to you. The government has no business taxing your death.
- All men are created equal. You learn some important things when you are young. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
- 5th grade Sunday School lesson: "End of the World." The kids always like that lesson and get really involved. #
- Ready for the Cowboys v Redskins. How 'bout them Cowboys! #
- El Giro Mexican Restaurant is now a favorite if mine since it changed to a completely non-smoking restaurant #
- Sirens going off downtown- Ammonia leak in Theodore Industrial canal #
- I survived my first day as football coach of the 1st & 2nd graders. Let's see how many players come back for day two… #
- Going to see if they will take my blood donation today. Last time they said no since I had recently been to the Amazon jungle #