Monday, August 22, 2011

Letters, We Get Letters

I gave up writing letters to the editor years ago, but I still read them and think what I might say if I were to write responses to the ones I consider silly and/or moronic.  If I were still writing them, here's one I would answer for sure:

The letter said, and I quote, "My wife and I live on Social Security, somewhat below the poverty line.  However, to help our strapped nation, I would gladly pay $1,000 or so in income tax to help out (we pay none now). As to cuts, I can do without public radio, the National Part Service (trees grow without it), Housing and Urban Development (which hasn't worked), handouts to millions of people and a half-dozen other federal programs."

And, he ends, "I just want to do my part."  Signed Frank (last name withheld by me)

And, this would be my response,

Dear Frank:

1. If you and your wife "live on Social Security, somewhat below the poverty line," you can't possibly find the money to  pay $1,000  or so in income taxes or otherwise, fool. But if you do, miraculously,  have an extra $1000 or so at the end of each year, feel free to write a check to the government with a note that says "Please apply this to the national debt. More to come next year."  I'm sure the IRS will happily accept your donation. (And, then, they'll probably audit you back to the Nixon Administration.)

2. "Do without Public Radio?" Oh, ha-ha.  Cutting funds would not help one iota in paying down the national debt. It's a tiny, tiny percentage - less than 1/10th of 1%.  So, don't turn it on if it offends you. Nobody's forcing you to listen.

3. "The National Park Service doesn't aid in the growth of trees."  I think you must have the Park Service confused with Johnny Appleseed. It does help in keeping trees from being cut down willy-nilly by the lumber industry, though, and it makes it possible for you to safely enjoy vacations in places like Yellowstone Park without getting lost or eaten by bears.  Next time you're in one of our beautiful parks, say "Thank You" to a Park Ranger.

4. "HUD hasn't worked??!!?" Tell that to the thousands of communities who have benefited from Urban Renewal and the millions of people who have been able to afford low cost housing.  In fact, if you're truly living below the poverty line, you might want to look into some of the benefits. You might be able to pay less rent or get help with your mortgage.

5. "Handouts to millions of people."  I assume you are talking about welfare and Medicaid, while ignoring the vast numbers of companies that have benefited to "handouts" in the form of corporate welfare. I'll wager that you are also receiving some form of "handout" from other Federal or State agencies if you actually DO live below the poverty line. You don't seem to mind drawing your Social Security.

Frank, go get a cup of tea, along with the rest of your pals and stop embarrassing yourself with silly letters to the editor, and I will stop embarrassing myself by responding to them.

Stay tuned.


marlu said...

I don't understand how some folks pay NO income tax. Seems to me like we all ought to pay something for the privileges we have -
What is the poverty level at which people pay nothing? I need to check up on this.

Margie's Musings said...

Marlu, I am at the top of the poverty level and barely qualify for the job training program I work. I work 12 hours a week at minimum wage through the Department of Labor. . I assume Frank would do away with that program too. I am also required to look for a job each month and send in a list of seven to nine places I apply. If I choose not to do that, I will lose my job training job.

I listen to NPR each day and watch PBS too.

Meryl Baer said...

The Federal Poverty Level for two people - 2011 numbers - is $14,710(higher for Alaska and Hawaii). You can check out the numbers at:
Great article - tell it like it is!

Margaret (Peggy or Peg too) said...

Thanks for a great retort - I wish you had really sent that one in!!!

I predict that ole Frank is a fat white man with buckets of money who has no empathy for anyone else or has never done a charitable deed in his lifetime. I hate those smug @#$%ers.

Anonymous said...

This is what I don't understand-how these folks vote against their own interests. You know that the rich ones vote for the party/candidate that serves their interests. Why are these folks going with them?

I will never understand the logic. But I do have a prejudice, in that I don't think that many are of limited education/factual information. That is where the focus needs to be. Your responsive letter would have been a step in the right direction.

Kay Dennison said...

I am on Social Security and well below the poverty line and yes, I get some help for which I am grateful. I do the best I can with it and a pox on those who would deny me it.

Love your response, Betty -- you have a great sense of humor.

marlu said...

Thanks for the information. I must confess ignorance because I had never checked on what the poverty level is.
Now I can understand how it is possible not to owe any income tax. I had no idea. I am on Soc. Sec. but my husband is not. He has a retirement package.
I guess the corporations who pay nothing are the ones who should pay something.

Looking to the Stars said...

LOL, I love your response. I used to write letters to the editor, which none were printed. But, they seem to always print the stupid ones, like Franks :)

thanks for the great laugh :)

Darlene said...

Betty, for goodness sake please send this to your newspaper. It should be published so idiots like Frank can be exposed for the small mindedness they possess.

Betty said...

Margie: You are the busiest person! Where you find the energy to do all you do is a mystery to me. I admire you.

Marlu: I'm glad you got the information you were looking for.

Mercyn: Thanks for the information!

Margaret: I think ol' Frank knew exactly what he was saying, and he really believes it. He'll never wake up.

always: I don't think there are that many of limited education/factural information, either. But, I DO think that many are mean-spirited individuals.

Looking: My letters were printed, but didn't have much effect in this majority Republican state.

Darlene: In this state, letters like mine will get you death threats. Especially in my part of the state, where the necks are bright red and the heads above them are empty.

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patsy said...

i think Frank is a liar or living on hot air.

Grayquill said...

While reading your blog post I had feelings of nostalgia I was reminded of when my GLB (great liberal brother) set me straight – you liberals all sound alike – is that you GLB? I do think you should pick back up that pen and start writing to the editor. We need something to save our newspapers.