MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

November 3, 2012

THE PEOPLE SPEAK — Check out Romney’s record as governor


— If the Republicans had checked Mitt Romney’s record as governor of Massachusetts, they would not have nominated him. He was a very unpopular, one-term governor. Unemployment doubled and young people had to leave the state to get jobs. At the end of his term he had the largest debt in history. Romney claims the unemployment rate fell during his tenure as governor and that he created 40,000 jobs in his last year in office. As the nation s economy grew and the median income rose, under Romney Massachusetts plummeted from 36th to 47th out of 50 states in job creation and the median income declined. When he took office, unemployment in Massachusetts was below the national average. When he left office, the unemployment rate was higher than the national average for the first time since 1995. Even as his state failed to keep up, Gov. Romney slashed funding for the Massachusetts Manufacturing Extension Partnership, a program that helped hundreds of small manufacturers compete, survive, and save thousands of jobs.

In January 2011, Bain Capital (Romney owns 50 percent) purchased Sencat Technologies in Freeport, Ill., an automobile sensor company, from Honeywell for $140 million. Even though the company had shown large profits, they had almost two years to prepare for closing and the company was outsourcing to China. The workers trained the Chinese. The workers lost their retirement and all other benefits. They begged Romney to save their jobs. He said it was a smart business decision. He has bragged that he knew the best time to outsource jobs and he was impressed with the Chinese slave labor. This is how he has made his millions.

MILDRED GRAESER

Muskogee



Be smart, well-read,

but most of all — vote



The discourse in politics, locally and nationally, has degraded from being substantive to silly talk. Sound bites and pet phrases seem to mean more to voters than facts and reality. On a late night mail run for the church I met a gentleman in the parking lot of the post office. He approached me and said, “Sir, I’m sure you’re voting for Obama, but not me because he was born in Kenya.” I paused before responding, and almost walked away without saying anything at all, but something in me provoked me to speak. I asked the man how he arrived at that conclusion, and immediately he went into a rant and tirade about “taking back our country” and our country not becoming a “socialist” government. Only one example of how many in the electorate are erring on the side of soundbites and not substance, exaggerated fiction and not facts.

To complicate matters further in Oklahoma, our state Legislature is now asking voters to decide on issues in the form of state questions that they were elected to resolve as a body. State questions are usually the result of personal agendas that cannot get enough votes in the Legislature so are put to the voters to decide. Arguably, a majority of the questions have no merit and have been presented like a stone being cast from the shadows by cowardly legislators who insist on appealing to constituents’ fears and ignorance.

As a voter I hope you’re smarter than some candidates or legislators take you to be. Don’t be deceived by silver-tongued politicians who use words like “socialism” or “entitlements” to which they can barely define themselves; neither be misled by language in state questions such as “affirmative action” or “lower taxes” that tend to appeal to our emotions and not to our intellect. As the voting begins be smart, well-read and informed, and most of all, vote.

THE REV. MARLON J. COLEMAN

Antioch Missionary Baptist Church

Muskogee



Question 766 protects

businesses, individuals

As a future graduate at Northeastern State University with a major in cellular biology and plans to go into the optometry program, I cannot help but express the importance of voting yes on State Question 766. If this gets voted against, it can have detrimental effects not only on a large number of students in the future as business owners, but individuals and other businesses as well.

Not only does this state question affect businesses and individuals, but it also will have an effect on trying to find a job in Oklahoma. With businesses having to cut back even more on expenditures due to the unnecessary taxing of their intangible property, it will have an effect on the number of jobs that are going to be available to Oklahomans. This being said, businesses and individuals don’t need to be taxed more. The last thing that businesses and individuals in this economy need is to be bombarded with more unnecessary tax dollars that are just wasted by the government.

If this state question fails, businesses in Oklahoma will stop expanding trying to avoid the taxes that no other state collects. It will cause businesses to avoid Oklahoma, therefore causing a decline to the jobs available in this state. By voting yes on State Question 766, we as Oklahomans can ensure that job growth will continue in this great state. We can also ensure that we won’t be taxed on things such as life insurance policies, pensions, customer contracts, ideas and imagination of Oklahomans, or any other such intangible properties. Vote yes on State Question 766 and protect Oklahoma businesses and individuals.

RANDY COX

Fort Gibson



President Obama

deserves pink slip



In his recent daily editorial (Oct. 2), President Tony Perkins of Family Research Council wrote that Obama, desperate to cushion the blow of next year’s defense cuts, is asking companies not to warn their staff and employees about impending layoffs until after the election.  By law, employers have to give workers at least 60 days’ notice of potential layoffs. In the Pentagon’s case, the planned cutbacks are severe so that the military is scheduled to take a half-trillion dollar hit Jan. 2. Instead of dealing with the fallout, Obama  is hiding the painful reality from thousands of people (voters) who will be out of work. Lockheed Martin is one of the companies so affected.  It is flabbergasting to know that Obama would urge companies to break the law and then have the audacity to stick taxpayers with the bill for covering severance or liability costs for this new government-funded bribe. Rep. Buck McKeon  and Sen. Lindsey Graham are planning to prevent any taxpayer dollars to be spent reimbursing companies for failure to comply with the WARN Act.  Graham said, “This illegal action is beyond the pale, patently illegal.”

Obama is on record of promoting policies that diminish the military strength and morale, even obstructing the military voters’ procedures so that their voting privilege is  delayed in November, one has to wonder how many voters are impressed with a man who puts his own career and election possibilities ahead of the security of thousands of families by denying  workers adequate time to plan changes in their families’ financial situation and provide care for them.  Obama is the one who deserves the pink slip for continuing to show more evidence of corruption in his administration.

CATHERINE WHITE

Muskogee



Hulbert needed

in state Legislature



At a time when our public schools, economy, and traditional Christian family values are under attack, Arthur Hulbert is the type of individual we need representing us in OKC. Arthur is an educator himself who currently has his 3 children in public schools, so he understands what must be done to stop the cuts to our school system, and he has the support of 6 local superintendents to do so. He also has created over 200 jobs for young people, including myself, who thanks to Arthur’s personal investment in our lives have had opportunity to not only earn a living ourselves, but also to return the favor and provide employment opportunities for others as well. As a man of faith, Arthur has made it his life’s work to serve others and tend to the needs of others before his own: Whether it’s providing free physical therapy to the Muskogee and Fort Gibson football teams, or his willingness to provide therapy services to the elderly who in some cases did not have the financial resources to pay for their care, and without Arthur’s generosity and desire to serve them, would have continued to go without the care they so desperately needed.

By now many of you have probably received some negative propaganda about Arthur consolidating our rural schools, supporting crippling Social Security and Medicare cuts, as well as Arthur supporting more damaging cuts to our education resources altogether. This is simply untrue, but it does reveal the type of extreme behavior and lack of character that some individuals will resort to for political gain. This is the type of politics that we have all grown so tired of, but it is very uplifting to see individuals with the character of Arthur rise above these attacks, put the needs of others first, and continue to serve their community with every ounce of strength and courage they have.

With the election coming up on November 6th, it is my sincerest hope that you will join me in voting for Arthur Hulbert to provide a brighter future for our friends and family.

GRANT LINIHAN

Muskogee