Letters to the Editor

Readers write about how the US should respond to Pakistani terrorist attacks in India, whether a stimulus package for the US economy should include more spending, the unique voice of columnist Mel Maddocks, and the end of junk mail.

America should help India fight Pakistani terrorists

Regarding the Dec. 1 editorial, "Best way to react to India's '9/11'": I am surprised by your editorial asking for restraint from India in the wake of the terror attacks. I understand the American fear that military attempts by India to destroy terrorist camps in Pakistan would jeopardize US attempts to fight the Taliban along the Afghan border. However, I cannot understand asking a nation that has lost more than 7,000 citizens to terrorist attacks in the past four years to show "restraint." Pakistan has not only refrained from taking action against terrorists operating against India from its soil, but also actively supported these terrorist groups. America can be a true leader in the war on terror by joining India's efforts to uproot the terrorist infrastructure in Pakistan.

Bhavani Subramaniam
Blacksburg, Va.

Obama stimulus can't raise US deficit

In regard to the Nov. 26 article, "In switch, Obama emphasizes belt-tightening": President-elect Obama's current plans to contain spending while simultaneously spending on a stimulus package concern me. Doing so will push the federal deficit to new heights.

Mr. Obama's economic advisers argue that a stimulus plan will increase the deficit simply because it must be increased in a bad economic climate. They argue that failing to act will push America into a depression because government intervention is needed to promote economic stability and job creation, a lesson learned from the Great Depression. But this is 2008, and the Depression-era government did not face a budget that spends almost as much on debt repayments as it does on the Defense Department.

The federal government tells Americans to manage their debt responsibly, but it should lead by example. I agree that the government should intervene to promote growth, but not at the expense of destroying its own balance sheet. Obama needs to have his economic team cut the federal budget's waste and develop a stimulus plan that does not exceed the amount of future budgetary cuts. If too much debt can force the average American into bankruptcy, it can do the same to our government.

Norman Sawyer Jr.

Mel Maddocks was a unique voice

Regarding the Nov. 28 commentary, "Mel Maddocks: an appreciation": I began subscribing to the Monitor as a college student in the 1960s. Despite my busy schedule, I rarely missed Mel Maddocks's columns. He was a genius at combining his wit, humor, and perspective on a wide range of topics and issues. He was a deep thinker and a gifted writer with a unique approach to every subject. Mel was able to make the connections that put our very thoughts and feelings on paper, making the reader laugh, if not smile. He was a truly great columnist.

Joanne Anderson
Edina, Minn.

Business can survive without junk mail

In regard to the Dec. 2 article, "Americans hail a postman who didn't deliver": As a real estate agent, I send out hundreds of pieces of junk mail every week, knowing that the vast majority goes straight in the trash. Half of my business comes from the few pieces that are actually read. Despite this, I will applaud if junk mail is banned. Americans aren't going to stop buying what they need simply because they don't get junk mail. Business owners like myself will just have to find new ways to reach our customers.

Daniel Schein
San Jose, Calif.

The Monitor welcomes your letters andopinion articles. Because of the volume of mail we receive, we can neither acknowledge nor return unpublished submissions. All submissions are subject to editing. Letters must be signed and include your mailing address and telephone number. Any letter accepted may appear in print or on our website, www.CSMonitor.com. Mail letters to Readers Write and Opinion pieces to Opinion Page, 210 Massachusetts Avenue, Boston, MA 02115. E-mail letters to Letters and Opinion pieces to OpEd.

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