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Deficit Reduction and California

August 18, 1993

* In response to your editorial "But Is It Good for the State?" Aug. 7:

The Times is supposedly a premier national newspaper. It is therefore sad to note your indulgence in jingoism and simplistics when you complain about our receiving only 13% return from 15.5% deficit reduction costs.

You complain about the "asymmetry" in the present depression. Perhaps we are "down" more because we were "up" more. We contributed to it. By greedy and stupid business decisions of a real-estate business gone crazy--encouraged by dumb tax laws. (Which we are now reinstating.) Did we receive more than our share of the defense budget? There are 100 B-1 bombers sitting out there--useless. But they sure brought jobs!

This relates to the media cry that everyone else wants the deficit cut; but not in their back yard. You criticized spineless legislators for not cutting the honey-bee and mohair subsidies. Would you do the same if they were in California? I think not. I haven't seen any concern about pork brought in by Sen. Dianne Feinstein, et al.

Whatever we say about the perfidy of Congress and the public, let's not forget that newspapers are part of the problem.



* I cannot recall a critical piece of legislation that has been so misleadingly represented on both sides and, as a result, so little understood as the tax and deficit reduction bill just signed into law after an embarrassingly partisan display of bad government.

I suggest that President Clinton and Minority Leader Bob Dole join hands publicly and attest to the following:

-- That failure to reduce and eventually eliminate budget deficits, which lead to unmanageable debt, can bankrupt our nation;

-- That, simultaneously, the already fragile economic recovery must be carefully protected against relapse into recession or worse;

-- That deficit reduction, whether by tax increases, by spending cuts or by both, puts a drag on economic growth and job creation. Nevertheless, it must be done.

-- That people, rich and poor, if given the honest facts, and if shown evidence that government intends to cure itself of waste, corruption and mismanagement, have the capacity to make the sacrifices necessary to do so.


Pismo Beach

* Your editorial (Aug. 12) bemoans the lack of bipartisanship in Congress. I would remind you that the discipline and responsibility of the political parties until 33 years ago are largely responsible for the greatness of this country. When voters were able to assign the responsibility for results to a particular party, we were all better off. If this "deficit reduction" program works, we will know the Democrats were right and reelect them. If it doesn't work, we know who to blame. Simple, isn't it?



* A valuable lesson can be learned from the deficit reduction budget passage process--hold out, act like a spoiled brat and you will be richly rewarded!



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