Based on inflation, today's minimum wage should be $15-$16

To The Daily Sun,

It is interesting how the present legislature is bent on compromising the rights of all workers in the workplace, whether in the private sector or government sector.

Current legislators are attempting not to provide the right to work, rather it is the right to freeload that is being promoted. Current employees in the government sector are paying what is called "fair share" fees in that the union bargained for their benefits and therefore "fair share" employees should assist in the finances of benefits bargained for on their behalf. It is not right that these hard-earned benefits be provided for all, while some do not pay their way. It is not a matter of choice, rather it is a responsibility that everyone pay for the benefits earned in the bargaining process.

It is also interesting, that many legislators are much more financially better off than most of the state employees, who are also represented by these legislators. In a way this is a class battle of the haves and not so fortunate. Therefore, not only does this right to work or right to freeload impact on full-fledged members, but everyone in the workforce, be it the private sector or the government sector. Wages that are held down is not the driving force of a healthy economy. Rather, by providing better wages as well as benefits, the economy is improved on a global level.

What happens is that when you increase people's wages, you increase their spending power. Not many people retain their hard-earned wages, but are spent on daily activities of life, food, shelter, heat, medical, and transportation. When these people have less to spend, there is less money entering the overall economy. In turn, with the increase of demands brought about by more spending, this means an increase in the need for more labor to help move the product of productions as well as increase the profits of either the businesses and their respective owners.

It is a proven fact, that economies are wage driven. Without people who have wages to spend, there is no economy. Today, based on rates of inflation, the minimum wage should be around $15-$16 an hour. These delays of improving our economy by increased hourly wage also impacts negatively on the work force that drives the economy. They do not have money, no one buys big companies products.

Therefore, freeloading does not help the economy, it hinders it. By forestalling increase of wages long overdue for all workers of both government and private sectors, the economy will be sluggish, if not going into a downward spiral. The unions in this state are critical to the improvement of this state's economy. Freeloading is not the answer. Rather, it is actually the detriment toward a positive direction of this state's financially picture, as well as further worsening the state's own government funding.

With improved wages, there is also decreased welfare spending, which in turn will reduces taxes of those paying into the system. In turn, people have a better perspective of themselves, their employer, and their government. It is a win-win situation for all parties, employees, employers, and the government sector. Vote "No" to the right to work.

Bob Joseph, Jr. RN, ASN, BA, EMT-I

New Hampton

  • Category: Letters
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Scalia has maniacal obsession with rigid view of Constitution

To The Daily Sun,

Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia has said he was forming an "independent search committee" along with Justice Clarence Thomas to "pick a new Pope".

"I have no alternative," he continues, but to pick a Pope himself based on a "disturbing" interview with Pope Francis. It is rumored that Scalia is a member of Opus Dei, a renegade right-wing Catholic cult numbering about 100,000 worldwide. Its main tenants are that God is authoritarian and, therefore, Opus Dei adherents support dictatorial societies that women stand behind men in life, that mass should be held in Latin, and that God created a natural order of life where the rich are rich and the poor are poor. This divine order of inequality shouldn't be disrupted.

Unfortunately, these and other beliefs are basic to Scalia's rulings on the Supreme Court including his maniacal obsession with a rigid interpretation of the Constitution.

It brings to mind the writers of the sacred texts of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam — all of which forbid "idol" worship but over time the texts themselves become idols and many modern believers practice essentially book worship also known as bibliolatry.

George Maloof


  • Category: Letters
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Labor unions are essential to the working and middle classes

To The Daily Sun,

Unions give power to the workers. The organization of labor and subsequent collective bargaining allow the workers to seek a greater share of the wealth being generated by the company. A union can also prevent or at least fight against workplace injustices and unilateral unfair worker related decisions by management.

Whether you personally like unions or dislike them they are essential for the well-being of the working class and the middle class — the 99 percent. No one in New Hampshire is required to join a union. Even in a unionized business you will find those who are not members. Those non-union members however do receive all the benefits of a union member. That is why they are required to pay a fee to the union to support the collective agreement.

Since the 1960s, union membership in the United Stated has been on the decline. During the union membership "hay day" only about one-third of all workers were in unions. But, with this level of membership, the country had a strong middle class. All workers, union and non-union, benefited by this ratio. As we have all seen, now that union membership has declined our middle class is disappearing.

According to a research project by Jaumotte and Buitron, lower rates of workers in unions has contributed to more income going to the wealthiest. Income inequality today is as high as it has been since 1917. The top 10 percent of earners receive more than one-half of all income distributed. Jaumotte and Buitron 's research also found that reduction (or stagnation) in minimum wages has increased wage inequality "considerably."

If we look back over time we see that labor unions: (1) gave us the weekend, (2) helped end child labor, (3) won widespread employee-based health coverage, and, (4) fought for The Family and Medical Leave Act. This according to a source in

So, regardless of your personal feeling about organized labor, unions are essential to the working and middle classes in America. If you see efforts to weaken unions, such as right-to-work legislation, or destroying collective bargaining, these actions are not in our best interest. Union busting is a national tragedy and is detrimental to the well-being of you and me, the middle class, and our nation.

Tom Dawson


  • Category: Letters
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Rep. Groen is a disgrace to Republican Party & to humanity

To The Daily Sun,

To say that I am outraged at the disrespectful and completely inappropriate comments made by state Rep. Warren Groen of Rochester last week to a group of fourth-grade students from Lincoln H. Akerman School in Hampton Falls is a gross understatement.

These young children worked hard, both in school and on their own, to create a bill which would name the red-tailed hawk as the official state raptor. What a seemingly fantastic real-world experience to understand the workings of government, from the inception of an idea for a bill to its ultimate acceptance or defeat. Did Rep. Groen spoke to the measure and to the children on a fourth-grade level? Absolutely not. He chose to shoot their bird out of the sky by treating them as adults, using as a crutch the argument that he didn't know if free speech should be limited or if the attendance in the gallery should.

Are you kidding me, Rep. Groen? Do you honestly believe that by stating your belief that the bird "would serve as a much better mascot for Planned Parenthood" due to its aggressive hunting methods was even remotely appropriate? It is quite clear from both his platform and voting record, Rep. Groen has an anti-abortion agenda. To allude to this at such a time, in front of a young audience who don't even understand the concepts of abortion or Planned Parenthood, is repugnant.

The message that he sent to these young, conscientious students was nothing short of discouraging. What child going forward would feel comfortable or have the desire to participate in politics when their hard work has been mocked and translated into an adult agenda that they didn't even understand?

As a member of the Republican Party, I must say that you do not speak for me, sir, nor do I support the callous and cruel remarks you made which were aimed at such an innocent group of children. Bullseye! You are a disgrace not only to the party, but to humanity itself. Shame on you, Rep. Warren Groen!

Victoria Bradley


  • Category: Letters
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Come to the Corner Meeting House on Thursday night at 7 p.m.

To The Daily Sun,

I want to thank all those people who came out to vote. It was a great exercise in the democratic process. Even though I did not win, I will continue to take an interest in the welfare of Belmont and be a voice for change. In politics one must follow the people's will and accept the outcome.

I do not agree with some of the decisions made by our selectmen, including their intention to demolish town-owned buildings. It has been reported in the newspapers and in minutes of meetings that they would like to demolish the bank building, the Gale School, the Belmont Mill and even the existing Town Hall. Any decision to destroy public property should be well publicized and brought to the townspeople for a vote.

When bad decisions are made they eventually show up sooner or later and that's when the taxpayers pay for the mistakes. The placing of a garbage transfer station on top of the aquifer that provides our drinking water is the latest big mistake.

Has Belmont put out a news release about the upcoming public hearing to be held at the Corner Meeting House on Thursday, March 26, at 7 p.m. The State of New Hampshire requires the town to hold this hearing regarding allowing household trash to be brought in to Belmont and stored at the Bestway site on Route 140 over the aquifer. However, the only notice that I have seen regarding this hearing was in The Laconia Daily Sun on Feb. 21 by N.H. Environmental Services. You would think that the selectmen would want the public's input on such an important decision with such far reaching effects for our town. This has got to be potentially the worst decision that has been made by the Belmont selectmen.

Water is the most important resource the human race needs to survive. We, here in Belmont, have a beautiful stratified drift aquifer, a gift that we should protect. There is nothing more important than protecting this resource, not even money. Please go to this meeting and discover that the town wants to allow Bestway to import up to 600 tons of garbage a day and process it over our pristine water supply. Needless to say it would take a number of years before we discover that our water supply is contaminated. But then, it is too late. It is up to every person who understands what an important meeting this is to be there and let your voices be heard. We don't need garbage on top of our aquifer.

I would recommend that the town find a larger room than the Corner Meeting House to be able to house all the people who will be there.

George Condodemetraky


  • Category: Letters
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