Schools, too, deserve their funding

Environmental agencies and public schools seem to be the only public entities that are still forced to beg the voters for meager amounts of funding to maintain their already stripped-down programs.

Meanwhile, our current elected officials continue to spend billions of dollars on an unnecessary war and bailouts for millionaire banks, insurance and investment firms without any voter permission.

This is absolutely ludicrous.

Shame on anyone who votes no for public school or environmental funding as the only way to retaliate against the current government. Instead, please vote yes for school and environmental funding and elect government officials with some common sense.

SHELLY CLAUSEN, MINNEAPOLIS

Why Kline should not be reelected

On Monday, the Star Tribune endorsed Rep. John Kline for Congress in the Second District based on the anguish showing on his face after voting in favor of the $700 billion bailout of Wall Street. Anguished or not, it is far too early to praise Kline for his vote.

On Friday, it was announced that PNC Bank was using its $7.7 billion share of the bailout money to purchase National City Bank, rather than loan the money to Main Street. Likewise, in a report in the New York Times on Saturday an executive with JPMorgan said that his company would be using bailout money "on the acquisition side or opportunistic side." Was Kline casting an heroic vote and proving his leadership or merely following the instructions of the Bush administration, as he has done throughout his six years in Congress?

Meanwhile, just hours after the endorsement appeared, Kline unveiled a new television add attacking fruit flies as the real cause for economic concern. I would like to suggest to the voters of the Second District that fruit flies have nothing to do with the economic trouble we find ourselves in and a politician who wants to make a campaign issue out of them in this time of trouble does not deserve your vote.

JOHN LARSON, EAGAN

Bachmann's well-founded concerns

I am tired of all the attacks aimed at U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann. When she said she is concerned that Barack Obama may be anti-American, she was completely justified.

When Obama was asked about raising taxes, he said with his own lips that he wants to "spread the wealth around." As Joe the Plumber says, that sounds like socialism. If Obama mistakenly believes that he and his friends in government know better how to handle my hard-earned money than I do, that's definitely anti-American! I am grateful for people like Bachmann who have the guts to speak out. We need her in Washington.

JENNIFER GOLDEN, WYOMING

Follow the fund distribution

McCain supporter Jim Triggs' complaint against Barack Obama's tax plan is that it is a "redistribution" of funds (Opinion Exchange, Oct. 19). Well, isn't that what it is with every tax fund?

The real question is just who are the funds being redistributed to? The middle class (Obama plan) or wealthy executives and corporations (McCain plan)? If the corporations are so needy of your tax dollars that they can't create new jobs without them, how can they afford to pay their CEOs multimillion-dollar salaries every year? Exxon Oil is making record profits but John McCain thinks they need more help as you struggle to pay your mortgage.

As the Republicans are so fond of saying, I'd rather have the money in my own pocket and "redistribute" it as I see fit. If they really believe this, they should be voting for Obama this year, not corporate supporter McCain.

CINDY ROHDE, ZIMMERMAN, MINN.

Palin's record

Both John McCain and Sarah Palin are attacking Obama's tax plans as a socialistic means of "spreading the wealth."

But in Alaska on taking office, Gov. Palin substantially increased taxes on Alaska oil companies, calling a special legislative session in 2007 to pass this tax increase. She then used the proceeds to add $1,200 to each of the checks sent annually to every Alaska resident, thus executing one of the biggest wealth-spreading schemes in recent history.

ROLF E. WESTGARD, ST. PAUL

Biden's wardrobe

Enough about how much was spent on Sarah Palin's clothes! Somehow I doubt that Joe Biden is wearing discount suits from The Men's Warehouse.

DIANE KELSON, ANOKA