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Where will money to pay $1 billion fine come from at S&P?

To The Daily Sun,

I read that the government and Standard & Poor are near a settlement that might involve a fine of $1 billion. I'm sure my fellow letter writers here can help clear up my confusion. Where is that money coming from? It all belongs to someone.

Maybe (but I doubt it) it will come from management bonuses. Maybe it will come from customers having to pay increasing prices. Maybe it will come from shareholders losing possible dividends. Maybe it will come from you and me, if the accountants can find a way to make the fine deductible. Maybe it will come from rank-and-file employees losing wages and benefits.

Companies do not commit crimes; people do, and it is people who need to be punished, by fines or jail, not companies. For all the behavior that led to the financial crisis, no one has been sent to jail. This can't be right.

The same argument applies to corporate taxes, I think. Where does that tax money come from? Management, employees, shareholders, customers or the general public. There's no other choice. In that list, by the way, I personally think the money comes from shareholders and management last, and I'm not thrilled about that either.

Johan Andersen

Gilford

Last Updated on Tuesday, 13 January 2015 10:31

Hits: 104

Six new companies came to New Hampshire last year. Wow! Six!

To The Daily Sun,

Recently the president has suggested that Americans spend their extra cash from low gas prices to buy a new car.

I have a car with 185,000 miles. I would love to buy a new car. Unfortunately I am unemployed. I have better things to use my "extra cash," such as food. There is no way I could afford a new or used car with less mileage.

I am a mechanical design drafter. I do not have an engineering degree, but I have experience — a great deal of experience. There are very few positions in New Hampshire but a bit more in Massachusetts. I have been applying to positions in Massachusetts and Maine. Yes, Maine. It would be an hour and a half commute each way.

I was a single mother with an ADHD son. My energy went into trying to keep him away from video games, which was his addiction. I tried everything to get him interested in anything else. Fortunately, I succeeded and he excelled in math and graduated college and has a great position and is doing well.

But I am not. I worked as a contract design drafter so that I could take my son to all his outside school activities. And I am glad I did.

For a short time, I was a substitute teacher in a town in Massachusetts. When I stopped substituting, about half dozen students were expelled. The school system could not get anyone to substitute for the middle school, which is where I was most of the time.

The students that were expelled were very smart kids. They did not have any family support and as result they got into trouble.

I am a firm believer that many students who get into trouble at school are very smart and bored — attention deficit kids. But this is another story for another time. I just want to reiterate that I am glad that I did what I did as a mother in keeping my son busy.

When I contracted, I would get laid off and would go to the next job. I would submit my resumes to many contract agencies. I worked all over Massachusetts. Companies would have a number of requirements. Not everyone filled the requirements and the company would pick the best person.

There is a change in employment now. Companies have requirements and they want all the requirements. They can be picky because there are so many unemployed that they can afford to be picky.

Companies are finding that they have gotten by without the extra person and are in no hurry to hire anyone unless they fit perfectly their requirements. Some companies are outsourcing jobs to India.

I have a friend who is an employment recruiter and sometimes she finds the perfect candidate and still the company does not hire.

I am familiar with three different types of CAD software. I have worked with all three in the past and can easily start working with them. But that is not enough. They want experience on the latest version.

When I go to a company they usually have one CAD software. And not all use the latest software package. It is impossible to be up to date on all CAD packages ... unless you purchase the packages and do work at home. The average price of CAD packages is $5,000. I don't know about you, but I do not have that kind of money to spend.

Not only do I not have a job, but the money I spent when I had a good job affects my community. I no longer can spend that extra money in the community. My community suffers.

Today Gov. Hassan is being sworn in for another term. It is a sad day for me, as I do not see anything that she has done to create good New Hampshire jobs with benefits nor keep the ones we have/had.

She went to Turkey for some sort of trade deal.

So many businesses are leaving states for right-to-work states. I wish New Hampshire was a right-to-work state. Businesses are leaving New Hampshire for right-to-work states. I think I heard or read somewhere that six new companies came to New Hampshire last year. Wow! A whole six.....

We have plenty of space and people to work in New Hampshire. We should be actively getting businesses to stay and expand in New Hampshire.

I do not want unemployment. I do not want Obamacare. I want a job. . . a decent paying job with benefits.

Today is a sad day. I am still unemployed and we still have Gov. Hassan. I wonder what the jobs prospect would be in the state if Walt Havenstein was elected?

Linda Riley

Meredith

Last Updated on Tuesday, 13 January 2015 10:28

Hits: 43

Downward slide of our middle class began under George W. Bush

To The Daily Sun,

Jan. 10 issue's letter, "Path Democrats Are On Is Fraught with Danger for Our Country" by Tony Boutin is wild with misinformation and plain old bias. How does Mr. Boutin (going after retired Prof. George Maloof) come to conclude that "in academia ... authority isn't challenged?" And, their "views (are) never questioned?"

It may be a long time since Mr. Boutin experienced formal education, but at all levels critical thinking now is taught. This is all about questioning, lest he think critical thinking is a useless fad. He should like to know it. Assumptions are examined. Questions are asked about questions. This isn't rigmarole. It plainly endorses arguing with evidence used to reach a reasoned judgment (replacing unsupported opinion).

Tony branches off from attack-on-academia to fear-mongering. It pretty much consumes the remaining many lines of his letter. The downward slide of our middle class, however, began under George W. Bush, who turned the $80 billion surplus funds left him by President Clinton into tax breaks for the wealthy. All went bad for our middle class, from there. And I will say that I'm not happy with any of our D.C. representatives who cater to corporate wants while groveling for those large campaign donations. Both parties have guilty participants on this score.

I'll wait to see if Bob Meade supplies his usual anti-Lynn-Chong letter, that he'll end with ominous tone: "...and she teaches our children." He may not. I called him up and we had a decent conversation, where I explained that in my literature and writing classes, my politics don't come up. I hope he remembers this, and that I do mind when he leaps to such a wrong conclusion and does it so confidently.

Lynn Rudmin Chong

Sanbornton

Last Updated on Tuesday, 13 January 2015 10:21

Hits: 43

Are majority of Meredith residents unhappy with non-peak traffic?

To The Daily Sun,

I've been following the robust discussion about the proposed Meredith roundabouts in your paper for the last few weeks. As usual, I'm astounded by some of the questionable information that's being submitted to you.

I tend to call them half truths, and the old saying is "A half truth is a whole lie."

Here's what's missing in many of the letters written to you by the members of the Meredith 3/25 Advisory Committee and Meredith Selectmen:

— Proof of their claims.

— In one letter, Warren Clark talked about how he and others gathered at the 3/25 intersection and observed traffic. That's good, but none of them has had extensive education in traffic engineering.

— I maintain that all the members of the 3/25 Advisory Committee, as well as the Meredith selectmen, make a field trip to the Portsmouth roundabout where State Route 16 goes under Interstate 95. I'd like them to do this at rush hour on a Monday morning and then on a Friday afternoon. They'll quickly determine that roundabouts are worthless in periods of peak traffic.

— Tell me again why we need roundabouts in Meredith? Have hundreds of citizens of Meredith lobbied for them? Who are they? Show me the petitions.

— As for turning right at the intersection of Routes 3 and 25 in Meredith, motorists and logging trucks can already turn right on red. If they can't turn right now because of oncoming traffic, that same traffic will block them from entering the roundabout. That fact was conveniently left out of several letters.

— If roundabouts are such a great idea instead of "inefficient traffic signals that force cars to stop," then why don't we see roundabouts at all larger intersections controlled by signals?

Finally, don't fall under the spell of the magic word "grant." You'll hear those in favor of the roundabouts that we're getting a free grant from the federal government to cover the cost. There's no such thing as free grant money from the federal government. All grants are legal contracts and the Town of Meredith will be bound to provide many things to the federal government in return for the money. It's all in the documents that you can read right now.

Here are a few questions that need truthful answers:

— Have the residents of Meredith been polled to see if they want their taxes to go up and tax revenue to go down as a result of installing roundabouts?

— Are a majority of residents of Meredith unhappy with the flow of traffic in non-peak hours?

— Have all of the selectmen of Meredith read all of the accompanying documents that are part of the legally binding contract the Town of Meredith must sign with the federal government?

— Are the selectmen of Meredith aware of all of the strings that are attached to the grant? Are they aware of future obligations to the federal government that are part of the legally binding contract they must sign?

There are countless questions and facts that must be answered and considered before roundabouts are approved.

If you want to discover some additional questions and facts about the proposed Meredith roundabouts that some of the other letter authors have left out or are not aware of, please visit this web page:

http://go.timcarter.com/meredith

Tim Carter

Meredith

Last Updated on Tuesday, 13 January 2015 10:18

Hits: 57

Belknap Mill is unique treasure that should be pushed as a major attraction

To The Daily Sun,

Recently, there has been a number of letters to the editor in this paper regarding the Historic Belknap Mill in Laconia, and most of the letters are concerned about the mill and what, if anything should be done about the state of its finances.

Since I don't actually live in Laconia, I had not paid much attention to the mill until after reading Carol Anderson's book on the industrial history of the mill. Her fascinating story not only talks about the history of the mill, but also how the city of Laconia played an important role in this country's industrial history.

For example, does everyone know the mills in Laconia manufactured stockings for soldiers during the Civil War, World War I, and also World War II?

When my wife and I visited the Belknap Mill in late October, we were surprised to see a small manufacturing museum on the first floor where stockings are still being made by cleverly designed, complex knitting machines that were manufactured during the 1800s.

We were also given a tour of the machine room where water, diverted from a dam on the Winnipesaukee River, had once provided direct power to the mill. Later, around the turn of the century when electricity was still in its infancy, two large, specially made electric generators were installed to provide hydroelectric power to the Mill. Excess electricity was sold to other customers in Laconia.

In my opinion, the Belknap Mill is a unique treasure that needs to be publicized as a major attraction for visitors from outside this area as well as for local residents, and hopefully, publicizing it might also lead to other sources for additional income to help support and maintain this historic building.

I encourage everyone who has never visited the mill to go see it.

Wayne Bredvik

Meredith

Last Updated on Tuesday, 13 January 2015 10:12

Hits: 37

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