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Letters, March 20

HB 2001: more housing options

Our community lacks affordable, accessible, and varied housing options to meet the needs of residents today. By removing outdated barriers, communities can begin to build housing options that create a vibrant community for people of all ages and abilities, including older adults. This includes building duplexes, triplexes and four-plexes in neighborhoods that have not allowed these diverse housing options, instead limiting building to only traditional, single-family homes.

The Legislature is considering House Bill 2001 to do just that by eliminating bans on these “middle housing” types in cities with a population greater than 10,000 and counties with a population greater than 15,000 on lands previously zoned exclusively for single-family homes. AARP supports this bill as part of the solution to address the housing crisis by expanding housing options.

There is an urgent need, as was elegantly outlined in the March 10 Mail Tribune guest opinion, “Remove barriers to ‘middle’ housing.” HB 2001 will help Jackson County become more age-friendly and vibrant for people of all ages and abilities. Please ask your legislator to support HB 2001. Someone in your family may need it today or tomorrow.

Liz James, volunteer leader, Southern Oregon AARP Community Action Team (CAT)


Trump is a disaster

The trade war that our glorious president is waging against the world lost us 0.25 percent of GDP last year and also caused our nation to have the worst trade deficit last month in the history of the nation. Our budget deficit is a disgrace and a huge threat to the country.

Trump hasn’t nominated an FAA cabinet official yet (too busy watching Faux News). He fumbled the ball by shutting the government down, delaying the work being done on 737 Max 8 jets. The GDP losses and gigantic trade deficit caused by an ill-conceived trade war is taking place while Trump insults the world. Then he tweets out a moronic message about planes and Einstein. This is our president, a sick loser if there ever was one. From theft of government revenue for tax cuts given to his rich friends, to his foul language, from his ignorant raving tweets to his two hour podium-pounding speech from a deeply disturbed man, Trump is a disaster. Trump lied and conned his way into the presidency. Yes, behold the Great Orange-Haired President who has brought us to the precipice of insanity while we all watch daily in horror.

Gerry Kirstein


Understanding economics

Most Americans don’t seem to understand the nature of our economic system as a social construct.

The truth is: Government spending creates money ex nihilo, while collecting taxes annihilates money within the system. The details of these creation and annihilation events define the economic system’s characteristics and elucidate its society’s values. In concrete terms: Taxes levied do not generate revenue that in turn funds government spending. Never have, never will.

The toxic myth of the self-made billionaire combined with the tax-spend rhetorical lie have contaminated the discourse to the point that it has become impossible to deal honestly with real economic issues in our effort to create lasting solutions. The most telling symptom of this break with reality is that few seem to understand the true nature and positive value of a high maximum marginal tax rate.

We must become mature enough to decouple the concept of money from its representation in the form of currency. Or as Piaget should have said: “When I was a child, I thought as a child. But now I have put away childish things. I must be scientific.” — Philip K. Dick. I love the intrinsic irony of Philip K. Dick referencing Scripture.

Robert I. Price


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