1-17-13 Waconia Patriot Letters to the Editor

At stake is the nation’s financial solvency

To the editor:

If you spend anytime reading how our founding fathers crafted the important documents of our country, one can only marvel at the wisdom and focus that they exhibited. There was much rancor over issues but they were loathe to repeat anything resembling the British monarchy.
When the Constitution was approved in 1787, the Articles were clear guidelines as to how the fledgling nation was to govern itself. However the 13 states and their delegates never would have supported this document unless they had an agreement that the first Congress would fine tune the Constitution with Amendments. They were insistent to have both individual protection and structural limits specified. “Ratification debates,” over 1,600 of them, ensued as the new Congress made sure that nothing could be misconstrued or any abuse of power be allowed. As a result, the first 10 Amendments were approved.
However, all throughout these “debates” the delegates were resolute that all matters of spending, taxation, borrowing and monetary policy would be the explicit purview of Congress. Specifically that of the House of Representatives because they were thought to be most representative of the public. This was specified in Article 1. The executive power and its limitations were specified in Article 2. The delegates were in lock step to deny the executive branch any power to control “the purse strings.”
I say this as a nexus to Bruce Helmer’s diatribe over the McConnell debt ceiling issue. Mr. Helmer is correct that McConnell tabled his own proposal, but there is more to it. Sen. McConnell, in July 2011, proposed an idea that would give the president temporary debt ceiling authority for the remainder of his term. He could ask for an increase in three steps of which each were to be voted on by Congress. He further stipulated that any increase in the “ceiling” had to be linked to a commensurate decrease in real spending. So while McConnell’s proposal flirted with the intent of Article 1 mentioned above, it was a bipartisian attempt to break the impass over the impending debt limit. The White House called it a “fall back plan” and not the best option. Even some Democrats said McConnell was “passing the buck.” Conservative Republicans weren’t happy either because it walked the fine line of executive authority over money issues.
The July 2011 plan went dormant until Dec. 6, 2012. Sen. Reid brought the McConnell plan to the floor of the Senate in which McConnell “objected,” thus killing his own proposal. However the President had now won re-election and the balance of power had changed. The President has said, along with others, that he has a mandate to “get things done.” To be fair, McConnell had also gotten an earful from the conservative wing of his party during this time and realized his “olive branch” was a bad idea.
However, there is more at play. On Friday, Jan. 11, 2013, Sen. Reid sent a letter to President Obama, signed by other senior Democrats, to use his “executive power” and raise the debt ceiling unilaterally. This completes the circle back to the Geithner porposal of Nov. 29, 2012. This now becomes a potential Constitutional crisis to which the President seems rather aloof. In addition, watch for some executive order potential with respect to 2nd Amendment issues.
Look, this debate between myself and Bruce Helmer should not be the issue. Rather what is at stake here is the financial solvency of our nation and how the balance of power is arranged going forward. I expect the Democrats will test the genius of our founding fathers.

Joe Polunc

Abortion has led nation ‘into the wilderness’

To the editor:

Next Tuesday, Jan. 22 will mark the 40th anniversary of the Roe vs. Wade U.S. Supreme Court decision that struck down all laws regulating or restricting abortions, thus effectively making abortion-on-demand the law of the land.
These 40 years since 1973 remind me of the wilderness wanderings the children of Israel endured which we read about in the Biblical account of Exodus. Our nation too has wandered in a “40 year wilderness” that has now made us comfortable with the culture of death.
Now our secular society no longer speaks about keeping abortion rare, but is concerned only that it is available and affordable. Christians are even being drawn into abortion’s web. Our tax dollars fund Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider. The new health care law, a mandate from the Department of Health and Human Services, requires employees to include abortifacient drugs as part of their health care plans.
Our U.S. Constitution guarantees us the “right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” But in abortion a life is taken! The inherent value of life as God created it is disregarded. In the past 40 years, since that deadly decision, 55 million Americans have been killed. Think of the states of Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin, Missouri, Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, South Dakota and North Dakota. Picture those states completely uninhabited — that’s 55 million! Every day, abortion takes from us the number of people lost in the World Trade Center on 9/11. Everyday 3,000 little children are dismembered with trash bags as their coffins and Dumpsters as their graves. And after every abortion there are two casualties, a dead child and a wounded mother. (My thanks to Rev. Dr. Peter Scaer of Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Ind., for these figures.)
The tragic school shooting at Sandy Hook got our nation’s attention! There is no respect for life anymore. “What is wrong?” and “How can we make our children more secure?” are the questions being discussed. For 40 years of history — a child was no longer secure in the womb.
The problem is sin. We no longer follow God’s word — the Bible. We need to repent and ask God for forgiveness. God’s son, Jesus, made His home in Mary’s womb until His birth. Jesus is our Emmanuel — God with us, to give us courage and strength to speak up on behalf of all children whom He loves.
Pray for our nation. Mentor the young people in your family and community on the importance of standing up for life. Make known the blessings of adoption. Embrace those women who have had an abortio and now live with guilt. Remind them Christ’s forgiveness is greater that their guilt. Volunteer at a woman’s care center. Join the thousands of Minnesotans on Jan. 22 at the annual MCCL March for Life at our state capitol, beginning at noon.

Helen Bunge