US Needs Reform, Not Reruns

It's a shame that in the opinion-page essay ``In '96 Election, the `P' in GOP May Stand for `Powell,'' Nov. 8, the author has to keep putting forth candidates like Gen. Colin Powell as the answer to Clinton in 1996.

There's no argument that General Powell's race isn't the issue; he's a fine American by any standard.But doesn't the author realize that this country needs vision and true reform on many fronts more than it needs a rerun of the Eisenhower years? President Clinton, for all his warts and failings, has really tried to put forth an agenda for mainstream Americans. Jay Putt Hauppauge, N.Y.

Oust higher taxes, not oldsters

While companies are trying to force 55-to 65-year-olds into early retirement to cut expenses, Budget Director Alice Rivlin's idea to cut the government deficit through higher taxes and reduced spending on Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid is cruel (``Growing American Economy Leaves Middle Class Behind,'' Nov. 1).

This cycle will usher many oldsters into economic hardship at a time when it is increasingly difficult for them to get jobs themselves.

Case in point: I am 54, and I have recently completed a PhD after years of teaching part-time and substituting at low wages while raising children.

I have applied extensively, am willing to relocate almost anywhere, and I cannot even reach the interview stage. Anne Weiss St. Petersburg, Pa.

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