HR1 hurts average citizens
Did you know that HR 1, the new tax plan currently being presented to the American people, would repeal the following deductions for individuals, but not for corporations?
• A teacher who buys pens, pencils, paper and other supplies for students can now deduct up to $250 on federal taxes. Repealed under HR1. Corporations can continue to deduct “business expenses.”
• Citizens can now deduct state and local taxes. Repealed under HR1. Corporations continue to be able to deduct state and local taxes.
• Homeowners can now deduct up to $10,000 in property taxes. Under HR1, that is the most they can deduct. Corporations continue to be able to deduct property taxes over $10,000.
• Workers who have to relocate for employment can now deduct moving expenses. Repealed under HR1. Corporations that close facilities, fire workers and relocate either inside or outside of the United States can deduct moving expenses.
I can understand wanting to simplify the tax code, but why is this plan, devised in secret, without bipartisan input, skewed so heavily against average citizens and for corporations? Does this seem fair to you?
One more thing: Representative Newhouse asks his constituents what they will do with their $1,100 “tax return.” Well, my health insurance premiums increased to $1,500 this year. Hmmm.
Sandy Vaughn, Chesaw
Snowblower cautionary tale
To my fellow snow country folks: Now that it looks like winter is showing her face, I feel moved to pass on some annual advice:
Over 20 years ago I had a moment of brain-deadness and ended up turning off a snow blower with my left hand, and being flown to Harborview Hospital in Seattle where three hand surgeons spent 21 man-hours rebuilding my hand. I write to remind all of you snow blower operators this winter season to not repeat my stupidity!
Even with new designs and safety features on today’s machines (mine was 20 years old), blowers can still jam with wet snow or “yard” objects. Due to the potential kinetic energy stored in the engine compression and belt tension when jammed, the impellers in a blower can rotate slightly when a jammed or clogged machine is freed up. There is very little clearance in the impeller housings. If your hand is the “freeing” agent you can lose fingers or an entire hand.
Never use your hand or foot to clear a clogged or jammed snow blower. Use a broom handle or long, stout stick. All new blowers come with a plastic paddle used to clear jammed blowers. Some even advise removing the spark plug to release any engine compression before working on a machine.
Snow blowers, like many powered devices, are in and of themselves not dangerous. They do need to be respected and operated with care and attention. Fatigue, being in a hurry, distractions, objects left out in the snow, etc., are the real dangers. Hopefully you will remember my story every time you operate a snow blower and not create your own story. Have a safe winter season.
Barry Stromberger, Twisp
Rude at best
Just as the Veterans Day ceremony started outside the Mazama Store on Saturday (Nov. 11), a man drove up to the gas pumps. This was a rude interruption to this solemn and meaningful ceremony. People were distracted as they had to move out of his way. He then started pumping gas, which was very loud and made it difficult to hear the speaker. When he was finished he started his car (more noise) and people had to move out of his way once again. He then drove a short distance down the road and parked.
So this was not an emergency need for gas, and even if it was he could have waited. The ceremony was short. I don’t know his motivation, but he was either completely clueless, or it was some kind of protest. Whatever he may have been protesting this was not the time or place to do it. The men and women we were honoring fought and died for our rights, including the right to protest. Just do it with respect for others. And even if it wasn’t a protest, it was incredibly rude behavior.
Eunice Marchbank, Winthrop