LETTER

The Baltimore Sun

Make Wall St. repay those big bonuses

I read with interest Dan Rodricks' commentary on the corporate greed of Wall Street, and I agree with the outrage he expressed ("A new low for corporate greed," Commentary, Feb. 1).

In recent weeks, we have heard countless people - from the president to elected representatives on down to the person on the street - decrying the outrageous bonuses handed out by the very Wall Street financial institutions we taxpayers have bailed out.

When will we stop making our outrage known and start taking legal action to regain the money they have taken and used in such a greedy and selfish way?

We are now past the point of talking about and exposing this situation. It is time to force these firms to give back the money and fire those involved in allowing these payouts to happen.

The troubled financial giants that rewarded themselves and their high-level employees with billions in bonuses in 2008 should not continue to receive government assistance.

Enough is enough - people have to be held accountable.

Elizabeth Kirk, Baltimore

Trickle-down policies create huge inequities

Finally, Dan Rodricks said what needs to be said in his column "A new low for corporate greed" (Commentary, Feb. 1). And it needs to be said again and again: Something needs to be done to correct the gross economic inequity that has been created by corporate bigwigs with the help of our politicians.

Mr. Rodricks hit the nail on the head when he pointed out that all this started with the trickle-down policies of President Ronald Reagan.

All you have to do is look at the data cited by Mr. Rodricks with regard to the shift of wealth to the top fifth, or even tenth, of the population to see what those policies caused.

Add to that something Mr. Rodricks didn't cite - the fact that the federal debt began its rapid rise under Mr. Reagan - and there is little doubt about the source and the type of policies that have created our current economic woes.

Thomas Rowan, Columbia

Stimulus bill loaded with pork for liberals

The stimulus bill is a Trojan horse for all the programs and agendas the liberals wish to fund without having to debate their merits; they have just added to this some stimulus spending, which looks like window-dressing or icing on the cake ("Stimulus package will touch nearly everyone," Feb. 1).

But has anybody seen a pie chart showing where all this money is going? Why are we giving our government a pass on better explaining what it is planning to do with all this money?

Let's stop the process and take a careful look at what we are doing and question what will really work to fix the economy and how to help those who are truly victims.

But let's not rescue those who are in trouble because they made unwise decisions because they were greedy - and that includes homeowners as well as rich executives.

Geof Smith, Reisterstown

New president suffers from values withdrawal

President Barack Obama made more than just a mistake by choosing expediency over integrity ("Tax lapses are undoing of Daschle, Killefer bids for jobs with Obama," Feb. 4).

Unfortunately, Mr. Obama will now have to suffer the withdrawal symptoms.

Ruth Fried, Owings Mills

Impose strict penalties for filching the fish

When I read Candus Thomson's article about the theft of thousands of pounds of striped bass by commercial fishermen in the Chesapeake Bay, I could feel nothing but contempt for these lawbreakers ("Punishment for striped bass poaching put on hold," Feb. 2).

I hope the federal courts will enforce strict penalties on these individuals that will help curtail future fish thievery.

Every citizen should know that marine creatures in the bay do not exist solely for commercial fisherman; these wonderful resources belong to all Maryland citizens.

If commercial fishermen harvest no more than their allotted share of fish and recreational fishermen do likewise, it may be possible for the bay to retain sustainable stocks of fish and crabs for the future.

Bill Huppert, Perry Hall

The writer is a member of the Maryland Department of Natural Resources' Artificial Reefs Committee.

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