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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

February 24, 2009 at 4:14 PM

Washington state budget

Falling short in neutral language

Andrew Garber’s bias is glaring; please make it stop. In his article about the state budget [“State’s $8B shortfall is among the worst,” page one, Feb. 20], he repeatedly uses the word “shortfall.”

This is as liberally biased a word as you can choose. It implies the incoming tax is falling short of what it should be. Garber speaks of “the shortfall” as if it is fact, rather than his opinion.

Imagine using the word “overspending,” which is equally biased in the other direction, implying spending is more than it should be. “Overspending” just as much of an opinion and has no place in news reporting.

Your job is to be neutral, not to imply where the level of taxation, or the level of spending, should be.

From then on, I recommend you use neutral terms such as “budget deficit” or “budget gap” without implying taxpayers are not doing enough — that they are falling short — even if that is your bias.

— John Panesko, Chehalis

Creating jobs by the sheer volume of economic activity

Based on history, government attempts to “fix” the economy in the late 1920s and early 1930s made the stock-market crash and ensuing recession into the Great Depression. Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., and the rest of the Democratic Party demonstrate a clear lack of understanding of free-market economics.

The government’s role should be to have minimal, but effectively targeted regulations, low tax rates that allow and encourage business development, expansion and research. This kind of government would create the jobs we want by the sheer volume of the resulting economic activity.

Stop with guarantees and entitlements; people driven by necessity will strive harder to achieve and succeed.

— Jeff Iacchei, Renton

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