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Wall Street greed proper cause for tax protesters

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I'm glad to see that 300 or so fiscally-confused local folk take their democracy seriously and participated in the protest against taxes on April 15, although after seeing the signs railing against "Socialism" and the president's birth place, I reckon their real problem is with Obama. I don't recall seeing this crowd protest when George Bush was spending like a drunken sailor on programs that either didn't work (missile defense),were bloated with earmarks (the highway bill of 2002) or completely unnecessary (the invasion of Iraq).

They didn't come out and holler when our civil rights came under the greatest assault in decades as the government a) listened to our phone calls, b) read our regular and electronic mail, c) tortured prisoners and d) threw habeas corpus under the bus. Nope, the subject that gets these armchair freedom fighters drop the remotes and come flying out of their homes to protest with all the dignity and reverence of Thomas Paine is ...money.

The irony that our current disastrous economic situation is due to rampant financial greed and that many of the Wall-Street types responsible for the whole fiasco are the ones who financed and organized this so-called protest is almost too much to bear. I've got news for you, gang: taxes aren't good or bad; they just are. You can quite legitimately argue that certain programs, policies or earmarks -- like, for example, the event center -- are bad investments and should not be funded.

But if you live in the lowest-taxed nation in the industrialized Western world and you talk a good game of patriotism, citizenship and sacrifice, the least -- and I mean the very least -- you can do to play your part is to pay your fair share without whining about it.

The generations before us made sacrifices that we can hardly fathom today. They were willing to give blood, sweat and tears for their country and their memories are honored justly. I have no doubt that, long after those of this generation have gone to their graves, their wallets clutched to their breasts, they will be given the place in history that they so richly deserve.

Robert Saxton

Bemidji

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