- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 18, 2008

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

Enough. If capitalism is so great, why is it that us members of the proletariat - read taxpayers - have to bail out the capitalists? Phrased alternatively, if our government cannot “sell” our financial institutions to our own citizens, why do we think any other country will “buy” our capitalistic system?

Perhaps our heroes should not be the captains of industry - whom I suspect created such complex financial instruments that even they do not understand what is in them - but rather rulers who nationalize.

Perhaps of even greater concern to us in the proletariat: Where are the government bailouts for all those whose jobs were shipped overseas by these same capitalists? Or the government bailouts for those who cannot survive on the minimum wage or cannot afford higher education or are unemployed through no fault of their own and have lost all of their benefits, such as health care?

Perhaps we should be putting our money elsewhere. To paraphrase a famous American patriot: Forget bailouts - give me health care or give me death.

GORDON E. FINLEY

Miami

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How about pushing for more details from the candidates?

Sen. Barack Obama claims there will be no tax increase for anybody earning less than $250,000. At the same time, he also is promising to increase the tax on both dividends and capital gains, along with imposing additional taxes on corporations.

Does the $250,000 figure refer to gross income or income after the usual deductions, including the exclusion of tax-exempt interest income?

What about those folks with earnings of less than $250,000 who have investments (outside their tax-deferred retirement accounts) involving dividends or capital gains?

What about likely tax increases on corporations? These increases undoubtedly will be passed back down to the taxpayer as an additional expense that is not generally even deductible.

What about those folks who receive a one-time windfall (income over the deductible ceiling on the sale of their home)? Will income averaging over (say) the past five years be reintroduced to obtain a more realistic estimate of actual annual income?

DENIS ABLES

Vienna

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