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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

December 22, 2008 at 4:00 PM

Solar panels for Qwest Field Exhibition Hall

Enough is enough

After reading “On Nickels’ wish list: solar panels atop Qwest Field hall” [News, Dec. 20], and listening to the pundits’ snide comments about the “pork” asked for by the mayors and governors in the recent meetings with our next president, I can’t help but wonder why one simple question isn’t being asked: Why is this money leaving our localities and going to the federal government in the first place.

They have no right to take our money and distribute it as they see fit, especially since most of it goes to support a ridiculous foreign policy, to other countries fighting wars and to useless federal bureaucracies, all through an illegal federal income tax. This sort of collectivism has never worked and never will.

If they want to provide real stimulus and fix this country, they’ll bring all of our troops home, cut the federal government down to its constitutional size and get rid of the Federal Reserve and federal income tax so the localities can take care of themselves rather than relying on the federal government.

— Adam Schmidt, Tacoma

What’s next?

Mayor Greg Nickels idea for spending $7 million to put solar panels atop Qwest Field Exhibition Hall makes about as much sense as spending the money on an outdoor swimming pool in Fairbanks, Alaska.

At least with the swimming pool they could use it as an ice-skating rink in the winter. God help us if Nickels’ top choice for spending the stimulus money is indicative of the projects that will be funded to alleviate our economic problems.

— Bill Hirt, Bellevue

Something less glamorous

We should not view potential federal-stimulus funds as though they are some sort of gift to be frittered. Instead, we should invest prudently, as though it were our own money, and keep in mind that, since it is all borrowed, it is really our children’s money that we are using to fund our lifestyle. Their generation will be expected to pay back what we have borrowed.

The Seattle Times story regarding Mayor Greg Nickels’ request for $7 million for solar panels atop the Qwest Field Exhibition Hall does not provide enough data to determine the project’s payback period, but the fact that the mayor isn’t touting this aspect of the project leads me to think that it isn’t a wise use of funds.

I bet there are other, less-glamorous projects with shorter payback periods that should top our list of things to do.

— Scott Flagg, Kirkland

Comments | More in Economy, Seattle

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