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Like Ike said

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Thursday, March 28, 2013, 8:55 p.m.

I could have heartily agreed with Ron Raymond's letter “Cut spending” (March 23) had he not invoked British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher to support his economic position. And his use of the term “socialistic” pejoratively to characterize those who think otherwise weakened his quite temperate and thoughtful thesis.

I credit Mr. Raymond for supporting balance in seeking solutions in the current economic struggle facing our country, saying: “We need to quit thinking ‘Republican' or ‘Democrat.'” But his position would have been clarified and strengthened had he used President Dwight Eisenhower's 1961 farewell speech for support.

Ike said:

“(We) need to maintain balance in and among national programs — balance between the private and the public economy, balance between the cost and hoped for advantages ... balance between our essential requirements as a nation and the duties imposed by the nation upon the individual.”

In the same speech, Eisenhower warned: “In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.” To paraphrase Oscar Wilde, “defense spending ... a spending cut that dare not speak its name.”

If one chooses the mantra “No tax hike; cut spending,” defense spending is where to go, since 20 percent of our national budget pays for past, current and future wars.

I'll take Ike over Thatcher any day.

Robert Jedrzejewski


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