Letter to the Editor

Guilty conscience

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Dear Editor,

Coming from Nebraska roots, and still having family in the McCook area, I read the article in The McCook Daily Gazette: "Nelson introduces bill to freeze salaries of members of Congress" (April 14).

How thoughtful of him! Had he initiated this action three or more years ago, it might look credible. This latest bill of his is a mark of a guilty conscience. In today's dire economy, even "freezing" salaries of members of Congress at their current levels isn't enough. Their salaries, benefits and perks should be CUT, downsized and rolled back to levels seen at the benchmark year of 1982.

Our nation has, for far too long, played games with financial "net worth." Until this nation drastically rolls-back cushy pay and benefits to reflect "real worth" instead of what can be borne, leveraged or extorted ... we won't pull out of this log-jam. Public servants should remember that they are to serve "The People" and not run their own little feudal kingdoms. Ben Nelson should hide his face and his name in utter disgrace and resign immediately.


James A. Marples

Longview, Texas

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  • Why is it that when one person makes a misjudgement, he's haunted by it forever? Can you honestly say that you've made all perfect decisions in your life? HE'S TRYING to do what he thinks is best. Unfortunately, not everyone likes it! What are you doing?

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Thu, Apr 15, 2010, at 1:03 PM
  • It is none of your business what he is doing, he is not a public servant rep. Nebr. citizens but Ben is. I have to agree with Mr. Marples. Ben probably wants to freeze them because he knows he won't be a senator much longer.

    -- Posted by geewhiz on Thu, Apr 15, 2010, at 2:35 PM
  • ONE MISTAKE? Does that one mistake make him bad? Can't we weigh everything that he has done for McCook and Nebraska as a whole and think that maybe he's done alright overall. Why are people judging him based on this one decision? Oh yeah, he's a Democrat. Then why did so many people vote for him?

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Thu, Apr 15, 2010, at 2:37 PM
  • *

    People voted for him because they believed he would represent their interests. When he stopped representing their interests why are they wrong to criticize him? Rural Citizen you are the one who brought up party affiliation. Sometimes one mistake is enough to scar for life.

    -- Posted by SWNebr Transplant on Thu, Apr 15, 2010, at 3:40 PM
  • He didn't stop representing our interests. He felt that decision was the best at the time for most of his constituents. Was he wrong? Yes however, he's done alot of great for this State and we shouldn't forget that. By the way, I am a Republican however don't like that we don't support our town people that have reached great successes in their lives. Do we always have to agree? No, but we still should be proud that McCook has been represented well in the State.

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Thu, Apr 15, 2010, at 4:17 PM
  • Sadly, from what I see, Ben's 'one' mistake will have an end result of a potential crippling of our way of Constitutional life, in freedom.

    I watched the FOX news interview of Senator Nelson, and came away with the sinking feeling he will say anything to protect his seat of power. One of the things Ben said, was to the effect that he didn't even know about the 100-Million dollars, until after they voted,,and then coupled another grabber, in that, he was negotiating for all States to not have to pay....OK, if no-one pays, and it must be accomplished, who then ends up paying?? A conundrum, I believe.

    Ben has done much for Nebraska, and his home area. However, he shouldn't have been elected to place his home above the Nation. Senators are elected to the responsibility of guiding the Nation, through adherence to the Constitution, for the overall betterment of the Nation, as allowed by the States, nothing more, and nothing less.

    The Nation is owned by the States, which are owned by the people. Therefore, the people own the Nation, and all elected to a position of trust, and leadership, must and shall always work for the people; something our elected, and appointed officials seem to have placed in a drawer, somewhere, along with our Constitution.

    Ben is not the problem, as much as we the people are the problem. We sit on our (you know what's) and demand that those we hire take good care of us, through 'Entitlements,' and 'Oneupmanship.'

    Being created equal, life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, are the only true entitlements addressed, in the Declaration of Independence. Nowhere does the term 'Socialist' appear in either of our two primary documents of Sovereignty. Sorry, I begin to rant.

    Should Ben's error, as we see it to be, prove to be greivious enough to remove him from office, we have two more years to determine. Let us not judge more harshly than we would wish to be judged.

    -- Posted by Navyblue on Thu, Apr 15, 2010, at 4:40 PM
  • Very well said, Navyblue! We should expect to be "taken care of" by the people that we elect to office. We should still make sure we are heard before they make decisions and hope that they make a well rounded adviced decision. We need to take responsibilities for ourselves and dig ourselves out of this mess that we all put ourselves into. Stop blaming others!

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Fri, Apr 16, 2010, at 9:46 AM
  • You destroy your own argument rural by saying," We should still make sure we are heard before they make decisions and hope that they make a well rounded adviced decision." That is exactly the point Ben did not listen to his constitutents since a large majority did not want this healtcare bill. He went ahead and put his party before his constituents toed the line and sold out for his vote. Fortunately the people who tried to call him like me and could not get through because they took the phone off the hooks so we woulnd't bother them are not goinjg to forget it.

    I still want to know. If it is such a great bill why are Ben and his buddies exempt from it? Why are they exempt from Social Security? I would love for a congress person to put forward a bill that tried to put them on SS and Obamacare and see who votes against it. I have a suspicion where Ben would come down on it and it wouldn't be "for the people" but for the senators.

    -- Posted by Chaco1 on Fri, Apr 16, 2010, at 10:14 AM
  • That doesn't destroy my argument. Just because he didn't make the correct decision based on YOUR opinion or several others in SW Nebraska, doesn't mean that he didn't do what he felt was right at the time for what HE thought was the majority. No ONE person can please 100%. If I remember correctly there was a bill that was submitted a few years back and it was shot down - by a Republican majority. So it's not just Obamacare. If you think you could do better, stand up.

    -- Posted by Rural Citizen on Fri, Apr 16, 2010, at 11:21 AM
  • I think that Nelson is on government insurance now. I would say if its good enough for him its good enough for everyone else.

    -- Posted by president obama on Fri, Apr 16, 2010, at 12:46 PM
  • Sounds as if several of the more conservative bloggers should have been in position to vote for Leon Panetta during his years in Congress.

    Afer election, voted against every pay increase bill and refused to accept more than the salary available the day he was first elected.

    His wife managed the primary district office for his many years in office --WITHOUT PAY.

    Panetta (The GOP's young star who walked away as VISTA director when ordered to violate federal Civil Service codes by the Nixon White House)served as House Ways and Means Chairman for more about a decade and was a key figure in balancing the budget and paying down the debt while director of the OMB and White House Chief of Staff.

    Immediately after being elected to Congress, he found a large apartment and organized a housing group of six first term congressmen to minimize their D.C. housing costs, allowing all to spend every weekend in their district.

    Summers, it was common for the congressman to arrive at Little League ball games by walking down from his house about 6 p.m. and going by the food stand to buy a drink and snack from his wife working there.

    All he has done as CIA director is get control of spending and track down all the various hidden legislative sources for CIA funding.

    ONE LITTLE DETAIL -- For any small state congressman to get anything accomplished for the folks back home -- He must swap votes and engage in some old-fashioned log rolling.

    One vote doesn't mean diddly. Building a reserve of YES votes for any measure you want for the folks at home, means voting for the other guy's per project. That's reality.

    -- Posted by HerndonHank on Fri, Apr 16, 2010, at 3:29 PM
  • Nelson did not go with what his constituents wanted. You can spin it any way you see fit but that is the crux of the matter.

    The congres needs to be stripped of it's perks and huge benefits packlages making it a citizen congress again rather than a 40 year profession for many who become multi millionaires at our expense.

    Yes Nelson is on a gubment healthcare program but it sure isn't the same one you will ever be able to get on to.

    -- Posted by Chaco1 on Sat, Apr 17, 2010, at 8:26 AM
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