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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

Category: Economy
February 28, 2014 at 7:04 AM

Improving economic disparities: Give workers a basic living wage

Columnist David Brooks states in his column that “ … the majority of workers are not seeing income gains commensurate with their productivity levels.” [“Capitalism for the masses,” Opinion, Feb. 22]. He also states that “ … Republicans need to declare a truce on the social safety net.” So far, so good. However, then…

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0 Comments | More in Economy, minimum wage | Topics: American Enterprise Institute, David Brooks, economic disparities

December 17, 2013 at 7:00 PM

Coal exporting makes economic sense for Washington

If shipments through Wash. ports increase, investment in infrastructure does too

I applaud the idea of keeping the debate about building new bulk-export facilities on a rational rather than an emotional level.

If the goal behind the notion cited in Lance Dickie’s post, “Look at the economic costs of exporting coal,” [Online, Dec. 6] is indeed an unbiased rational look at the economics of transporting and trading bulk-export commodities, that should be applauded. Too often, studies are skewed by preordained policy wishes and don’t look at key facts. Hopefully that will not be the case with this study.

Information in Dickie’s post implied that transporting products from out-of-state sources is bad for the local economy and infrastructure. Much of Washington’s economy is based on trading goods that originate from beyond our state’s borders. Approximately 70 percent of the imports that come through the ports of Seattle and Tacoma don’t stop in Washington — they continue by train and truck to various inland markets crossing many states.

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0 Comments | More in Economy, trade | Topics: Coal exporting, trade

December 15, 2013 at 7:15 AM

Federal government has sunk to new lows

It has shunned the jobless and protected corporations

So, let’s give Congress a pass because we avoided budget gridlock and another debacle over the debt ceiling? And, as you infer, the consequences at the polls would be avoided [“A federal budget deal, and no drama,” Opinion, Dec. 12].

We have sunk to new lows. I hope and trust the American people will figure out why this is happening, who is responsible and vote them out of office. Spoiler alert: that would be the radical element of the Republican (or tea) Party.

They have taken food from the needy, cost us billions, ignored immigrants, shunned the jobless and those just trying to survive. All while protecting the corporations, the military-industrial complex and the wealthy at the expense of education and training, infrastructure and the other investments needed to rebuild a civil society and reverse our current historic inequality.

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0 Comments | More in Congress, Economy | Topics: Congress, Debt ceiling

December 14, 2013 at 7:53 AM

Apprenticeship programs are a great option for high-school students

What are we waiting for?

High schools that partner with industry to provide apprenticeship programs offer another option to students who aren’t sure if they are bound for college [“A German import helps keep factories humming,” page one, Dec. 1].

Apprenticeship programs, like those that have existed in Germany since the Middle Ages, can provide students with high-level skills and set them up to acquire well-paying jobs in the community, especially in a time when finding a job is so challenging.

Instead of resting on the idea that all will be fine with a college degree, maybe it makes sense in today’s economy to have something to fall back on, like a trade. This doesn’t prevent you from going to college at a later time. Apprenticeship programs also increase the number of skilled workers needed to meet America’s economic needs.

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0 Comments | More in Economy, Education | Topics: Apprenticeship programs

December 12, 2013 at 6:29 AM

GM bailout is still not complete

When GM produces quality cars that exceed fuel efficiency standards, then we can call it a success

While I agree with Treasury Secretary Jack Lew on his statement that without the money given to GM the U.S. would have lost over a million jobs and might have slipped further from a recession to a depression, I have to ask why the American people didn’t have a voice in this decision [“$10.5 billion price tag for federal GM bailout,” Business, Dec. 10].

Granted taxpayers cannot be informed on all the issues specific to the auto industry, but, in principle, bailouts should be the topic of a larger discussion and specific legislation regarding when such rescue maneuvers are appropriate.

Today, some say President Obama made good choices that led to a recovering auto industry, but the truth has yet to be revealed. How the money was truly used and how much of the $26.8 billion in cash that GM now has on hand will be “returned” to the tax payers is still an unknown.

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0 Comments | More in Economy, Energy | Topics: Auto bailout, GM

December 6, 2013 at 6:30 AM

Mistletoe debate sparks moral questions

Why is begging legal and selling is not?

I think the mistletoe debate is very thought-provoking [“Oregon girl gets top row of braces after mistletoe snag hits the news,” NWWednesday, Dec. 4].

It presents an issue of morals versus extremely finite legal issues: a question that is truly hard to answer.

It is clear from a moral perspective that she should be able to be able to receive medical treatment. But should she be able to harmlessly bend the rules? The article would suggest yes by implying that the guard is in the wrong here by denying her the chance for dental care.

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0 Comments | More in Economy | Topics: economy, Mistletoe

November 20, 2013 at 6:30 AM

Gas tax increase falls on Metro, not the state

Where’s the accountability?

The Times seems to blindly advocate for the proposed statewide gas tax increase. If passed, it would give our transportation departments more money “to play with,” and that’s what they’re doing [“Big issues remain, but Senate GOP open to gas-tax hike,” Online, Nov. 12].

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0 Comments | More in Economy, Transportation | Topics: metro, transportation

November 6, 2013 at 11:21 AM

People need the opportunity to get a job

American workers lead to a bright American future All of the conservative, Republican, tea party people feel that poor people, who might need some help getting their lives together, just want to bury their snouts in the trough of free benefits forever. I don’t believe that for a moment. Yes, there are times when people, through no…

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0 Comments | More in Economy, Job market | Topics: economy, job market

October 27, 2013 at 8:29 AM

State hasn’t paid its share

2008 recession continues to affect those who had nothing to do with it There is a lot of pressure for the state Supreme Court to overrule lower court rulings on state employee pensions [“Supreme Court: rule against pension lawsuits, Opinion, Oct. 24]. A recent editorial pressures the court to rule against state employees because the state needs…

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0 Comments | More in Economy | Topics: economy, Pensions

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