Republicans' rhetoric not helping their case

According to columnist Thomas Sowell, the respected Stanford product, if the rich do pay the extra higher taxes, the amount would not run the country for more than 10 days with those extra funds.

Why is the Republican leadership so stupid not to point this out to our citizens day after day, instead of giving out the same old repetitious rhetoric, which makes them look like fools?

No wonder hardly any folks have a high opinion of politicians anymore.

Stan Ginn

Albany

Halt sports, junk food to save our schools

We constantly hear our schools need more money.

Here are some simple solutions that require no new taxes.

End school sports. Spend that money on teaching our children reading, writing, math, science and critical thinking.

All students should either walk or ride bikes to school.

No animal or dairy products in the cafeteria; no sugar/corn syrup/refined flour junk in school vending machines; and no fast-food outlets within 1,000 feet of a school zone.

Still want more funding? Impose a guzzler/luxury/nuisance tax on breeders having more than two children and give tax breaks for those adopting. A horribly overpopulated nation and dying world will thank us.

Michael Scott

Walnut Creek

GOP leadership wrong on taxing the rich

John Boehner and his fellow Republicans insist the only way to stimulate the economy is to give the rich more money.

Forget the bull about the 35 percent tax rate for the rich. Look at Mitt Romney and his 14 percent tax rate, which would have been less than 10 percent had he taken all the deductions to which he was entitled.

The ultrarich are taxed at the lowest rate since the Great Depression. Where are the jobs? The Republicans claim President Barack Obama's jobs bills won't work, so they block them. They say tax breaks (for those who don't need them) is the way to create jobs. It hasn't worked yet.

Why would we believe a bunch of greedy people who don't care about the 47 percent? They only care about the price of their stock. That's how they make money. Jobs go overseas, costs go down, stock goes up. They will sell America down the river for money.

If they actually paid the 35 percent tax rate, they might have cause to complain. But they don't. They pay a lower rate than someone earning $50,000 to $100,000. And they complain.

Steve Brown Sr.

Oakley

Must get to core of the problem -- culture

The school tragedy in Connecticut brings out discussion for more gun-control legislation.

Having more rules and regulations will not get to the core or source of the problem. Why do legislators continually go after the NRA and those who lawfully own guns?

How about going after the vicious and violent video games and movies that are primarily directed toward our country's youths? Practically every video game shows guns blasting away, explosions and other violent scenes.

Let us get civil for a change and try to teach respect and how it should be in the real world, not one based on Hollywood's influence.

Dale Berven

Livermore

We must work together to halt gun violence

On Dec. 14, a few hours after learning about the senseless shooting rampage at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., I was prompted to take a long walk in my small town of Piedmont. The walk provided much-needed silence and space to reflect on the horrific tragedy that has touched so many.

On my way home, I walked past our town's relatively new and lovely elementary school, Frank C. Havens, and through an open window in the school's auditorium, I could hear the clear and truly enchanting voices of children practicing a song for an upcoming Winter Concert. I paused and listened, as the singing voices made me smile and feel hope.

Immense hope, in fact, that even in the face of random acts of unthinkable violence perpetrated against the most vulnerable in our communities, our children, that to be human is to love deeply and passionately -- and we have the power to bind together and collectively upend the interests of the few who gain so much in making weapons that eviscerate the innocent: www.bradycampaign.org.

Denise Bostrom

Piedmont