In his cover story on Robert Lipscomb ("The Point Man," March 31st issue), John Branston wrote that Hamilton High School was in Whitehaven. I grew up in Whitehaven in the 1950s and 1960s and don't recall any public high school being in the official boundaries of Whitehaven in 1967 (as laid out by the Whitehaven Utility District in 1950) other than Whitehaven High School and Hillcrest High School.
Malawi is a long way from Memphis, but it's where my mind is these days. I'm thinking of one little village, Neno, where I stayed while volunteering in 2007. I am proud to be an American for many reasons, but I am proudest of how we are giving people across Africa a chance to live free from AIDS, hunger, and childhood diseases like measles and pneumonia. Unfortunately, this may all change.
Over the next few weeks, our representatives have some very difficult budgetary decisions to make. Reducing our national debt is critical, if not for us then for the future of our children. For less than 1 percent of the entire U.S. budget, we can help to end mother-to-child transmission of HIV, provide basic childhood vaccinations, and train communities in farming techniques to help them become financially independent.
As a member of the anti-poverty organization ONE, I'm going to let Senator Corker know that I care deeply about the future of America as well as the future of the world's poorest in places like Neno. Join me in urging Congress to continue our legacy as a leader in helping the least of these.
Mollie Merry Campbell
The current Republican-dominated Congress has promised to reduce the federal budget by $100 billion and thus restore fiscal responsibility to the nation's finances. Glaringly lacking in their plan for budget balancing, however, is any mention of cutting funds for nuclear weapons production.
The Obama administration likewise has vowed to expand nuclear weaponry, proposing a half-billion-dollar increase for more bombs. These funds would include a 30 percent increase for the new Y12 bomb plant at Oak Ridge, Tennessee, and an even larger increase for the plutonium bomb plant at Los Alamos, New Mexico.
The United States has 5,900 nuclear warheads. We've agreed to reduce this stockpile to 1,550. New bomb plants are both costly and provocative — they blatantly undermine U.S. arguments against a nuclear Iran and justify a revived global arms race involving Russia, Pakistan, and North Korea.
The case against new bomb plants and in favor of fiscal responsibility has never been clearer. The time for cessation of new nuclear arms production has never been more crucial.
G.J. Billmeier Jr.
Some people say I have a financial problem. I made $105,000 last year. I spent $175,000, and I plan to spend $185,000 next year. I've accumulated a debt of $715,000 so far, and every year I borrow more to sustain my spending and pay the interest on my debt. At 15 percent interest, it would take all of my income just to pay the interest on my debt. I have pledged the future earnings of my children to secure credit as long as possible so as not to cramp my lifestyle and have to face the unreasonable hardship of having to live within my means.
Fortunately, the kids aren't paying attention to what I'm doing and don't have a clue the shape they're going to be in. My friends who come to all my parties and share the benefits of my spending know my spending habits, and they say I'm doing fine. Others insist that I'm financially irresponsible, but my friends and I easily discredit them by calling them extremists and radicals. By the way, I'm your Congress.
The amounts above are scaled to reflect that of an irresponsible individual rather than an irresponsible government. If you double the amounts above then add seven zeros, you will arrive at the relatively correct figures for our government's revenue, annual deficit, and accumulated debt. Take a close look at the financial position of the moral degenerate depicted above. What are the chances of his future solvency?
8th District Tea Party Coalition
Correction: In last week's "Fly on the Wall," we stated that the Flyer received an email from the Memphis Business Journal offering a 2005 plaque. The email was from the company that made the plaques, not from MBJ. We regret the error.
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