Restore sanity to Wall Street
Regarding the David Francis column, “Four ways to tax Wall Street’s rich”: The US government shouldn’t stop with a capital gains tax, it should start with it. We need to restore sanity to Wall Street, eliminate speculation, and encourage investment. Today, stocks, and especially derivatives (think oil futures), are valued on emotion, the whim of one stock broker thinking the price has peaked versus another who thinks it’ll continue to go up.
We need to tax capital gains heavily on longer timelines for yields and discourage speculation. To stabilize commodity prices, their derivatives should be restricted to market participants. We need to eliminate margin loans. We need Wall Street to work for us, to provide the seed money for innovation. We don’t need Wall Street getting fat and rich off our hard work while it destabilizes our economy and nation.
America: still No. 1?
"A New Year’s resolution: Don’t accept US decline," was an excellent editorial. The major reason for negative thinking about the future of the United States is simple: TV network news delivers bad news and controversial stories 24/7. Americans must turn off the TV news channels and read quality newspapers for impartial news. With an informed citizenry, the US will once again become a nation of problem solvers and a beacon of hope for the human race.
This editorial states, “The World Economic Forum ranks the US as No. 2 in global competitiveness....” It should be noted that the US score is 5.59, just shy of first-ranked Switzerland’s 5.60. With over 20 percent of the world’s gross domestic product, the US economy is 10 times the aggregate size of Switzerland and the next four ranked on the list: Singapore, Sweden, Denmark, and Finland. Rather than signaling weakness for the US, the forum’s report actually highlights the strength of all the top-tier economies.
DAVID K. MCCLURKIN
Dialogue will bring peace
John Hughes’s “tongue in cheek” resolutions (“From Cheney to Dobbs, resolutions to swear by” ), demonstrates his lack of understanding of the process of dialogue when he says, “I would not be comfortable with a group that has just given the [Nobel Peace] prize to a president who talks the talk, but has not yet walked the walk.”
Dialogue doesn’t make an instant impact like dropping a bomb or invading a country, but it has far-reaching effects that raise consciousness, restore relationships, and create lasting peace. Let’s give Obama two terms before we judge just how much his talk will result in a more pleasant walk for all of us.
SUSAN M. ANDRUS