Setting the Veits straight | AspenTimes.com

Setting the Veits straight

Dear Editor:I have to take exception to Mr. and Mrs. Veit’s letter dated Sept. 19. Although they are entitled to their feelings and opinions about President Bush, it should be pointed out that Bush has given more in poverty and minority entitlements than his predecessor, President Clinton. Bush gave $368 billion compared to $191 billion from Clinton. That is according to the General Accounting Office of the U.S. government.It should also be pointed out that the U.S. Census Bureau figures can be misleading, because the illegal aliens can be counted into the census and in most cases they do not report employment, or the people that are cheating the welfare system don’t want the government to know they are working on the sly.On the other hand, the employment numbers under Bush stand at 4.9 percent unemployed (pre Katrina) compared to Mr. Clinton’s average of 5.5 percent unemployed. Bush’s and Clinton’s unemployment numbers both compare well with that currently of Germany (11 percent) and France’s (13 percent) unemployment numbers. The Veits should be aware that more than 50 percent of the federal income tax is paid by less than 1 percent of the wealthiest taxpayers, as it should be. This has not changed since the elder President Bush. It should also be noted that close to 30 percent of our taxpayers are paying an Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT). This means that this percentage cannot use their tax deductions such as mortgage, dependents, charitable gifts, state and local taxes. The AMT was a gift from the 1967 Democrat-controlled Congress; it was meant to catch the high-income makers who were abusing their deductions. Unfortunately, it does not allow for inflation. This means that each year the AMT will gobble up more and more of the middle class, which can hinder the U.S.’s ability to create more jobs. Less available income, fewer products purchased, less production, less jobs.As far as the assumption that Bush is lying about his commitment to the Gulf Coast, it would be foolish for President Bush and the Congress not to rebuild what was damaged by Katrina. This area is vital to our country, and everyone knows it.In reference to the Veit’s accusation of broken Bush promises, I do remember a promise that was made by President Bush to ask Congress to include, in the national budget, billions of dollars for the continent of Africa. As I remember it was made in 2005 after the tsunami hit.Jim Perry (J.P.)Aspen