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Terrorism Takes Focus Off the Jobless

January 12, 2002

Re "Jobless Rate Nears a 7-Year High; Political Debate Shifts," Jan. 5: The typical "Republican mentality" strikes again. Who cares if the unemployed, the poverty-stricken, the less fortunate are in trouble if we have the power to cut taxes for wealthy business owners? Unemployment rates have been steadily rising since George W. Bush set foot in the White House but, luckily, Sept. 11 took the spotlight away from the slumping economy and countless layoffs and directed Americans' anger toward Osama bin Laden.

The economy's trouble is not the infamous Bin Laden, it is the incompetence of those in power to provide sufficient aid to the unemployed. The war on terrorism quickly and less than efficiently emptied our budget surplus and turned it into a depressing, negative figure. And yet Bush remains a hero--the public's approval of him skyrockets to a whopping 90%--when all he managed to do was quietly and quickly shift focus away from his follies to his "strength as a leader" in a time of crisis. As abruptly as the war on terrorism will end, so will Bush's time on America's pedestal.

Veronica Yakovenko

Hollywood

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If Bush really is the compassionate conservative he claims he is, in return for the tax breaks that he is pushing for corporate America he should get promises from corporate CEOs to rehire the thousands of employees they let go in the past year. Otherwise, he should drop this wasteful corporate tax-break scheme and funnel the money into extended unemployment benefits for the thousands of unemployed workers trying to get by.

Raymond Tam

Glendale

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Re "Bush Signals Possibility of Deficit in New Budget," Jan. 8: Let's see. The Democrats spend too much, then balance the budget through taxes. They are labeled the "Tax and Spend" Party. The Republicans of late spend too much, then completely blow the budget by giving out tax cuts. I guess they should be labeled the "Spend and Spend" Party.

Don and Sharron Brundige

San Pedro

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In the 2000 campaign, George Bush said that the Democrats squandered opportunities. If Bill Clinton had squandered a $237-billion surplus in less than a year in office, the Republicans would have eaten him alive. Sept. 11 and the recession did not drain this huge amount of funds. Thank you, Mr. President.

Paul Bruyn

Huntington Beach

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