This week’s Viewpoint letters…
Get over it
In response to Robert Orgeman’s Viewpoint letter Dec. 18, there is one thing worse than the Democrats (losers) whining about the election and that’s Republicans (winners) whining about their whining.
Republicans say, “Get over it. Get on with it.” Maybe they should set an example by being gracious winners rather than rubbing the loser’s noses in the dirt. But no! When Trump addressed a rally on Dec. 16, what did we hear? We heard chants of, “Lock her up,” just like we’ve heard all through the campaign! A “positive change” should start with the winners, but they just can’t get over it and move on. What hypocrisy!
Mike Kuehl, Rhinelander
Reader disputes claim of whining
I’d like to respond to the writer that said he was tired of the “whining from the left.” I disagree. It is about time that the left takes a stand. We’ve had to listen to the GOP complain, obstruct, bellyache and whine about Obama since day one and continue for almost eight years. What’s wrong with making sure the election which just took place was on the up and up. Didn’t the GOP make an issue of ensuring the integrity of the voting process and pass numerous Voter ID laws to supposedly guarantee this? Then didn’t the GOP candidate keep insisting that the electoral process was rigged? Up until the day he won.
The recount was, to my way of thinking, undertaken not so much in hopes of changing the outcome, but to re-establish the integrity of the system and confidence in our voting machines. Between 2000 and 2010 in all general elections, with over 649 million votes cast, there were only 13 cases of in-person voter impersonation convictions. But, compare that with the problems exposed by an election analysis. For example, hundreds of Ohio absentee ballots were lost after reaching the Pontiac sorting center and in Detroit a large number of ballots listed in poll books were not the same as the totals given on machine printouts resulting in a third of the precincts in Wayne County being disqualified. In the Wisconsin hand recount, Clinton received 713 more votes while Trump added 844 votes, because voting machines misread valid ballots. The fact that nationwide there are only three manufacturers of voting machines, each one a huge GOP contributor, should give one pause. Remember too, the recount was paid for by Stein, not the taxpayers.
As for the Electoral College, it was created for two reasons, the Founding Fathers had to placate the slave holding south whose slaves outnumbered citizens and they didn’t trust the common man to elect the president. So they agreed on a compromise between Congressional and popular election, in case a totally unqualified person was elected by popular vote they hoped clearer heads would prevail. It looks like that hope will again be dashed when a reality TV show star who is demonstrably unqualified takes office. Behold America’s answer to Silvio Berlusconi.
To paraphrase Abraham Lincoln, “America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we’ve destroyed ourselves.”
John Kocovsky, Hazelhurst
Oneida County tax information
Oneida County taxpayers should have received their 2016 tax bills. If you did not receive your tax bill, you should contact the county or your local treasurer.
Oneida County treasurer’s office can be reached at 715-369-6137. Remember, state law states you must pay your taxes and pay them on time even if you did not receive a tax bill. You can also find the 2016 Oneida County tax information on the Oneida County website. Go to www.co.oneida.wi.gov. Click on property tax information located in the center of the screen to access the information. 2016 tax payments will not be updated on this screen until the municipalities have closed their books in February.
You must pay at least the first installment listed on the tax bill on or before Jan. 31 to your local town/city treasurer. If you miss the payment deadline, or if you pay less than the amount due, your taxes will be delinquent. You will be charged 1.5 percent penalty and interest per month on the total unpaid tax amount if you miss this payment. More importantly, however, you lose the option of making your second half payment in July.
Now is also the time to be sure you are certified for the lottery and gaming credit. Please check your tax bill. The amount of the lottery and gaming credit appears in the middle of your tax bill, right above the net property tax calculation. If you have not received the lottery credit and meet the requirements, contact your local treasurer who will see that you receive a claim form or go to the county website and look under departments, treasurer. You must sign and return the form to your local treasurer before you can be certified for and receive the credit. You are only allowed one credit. It must be property that was owned by you and was your primary residence on Jan. 1, 2016 to be eligible for the credit. This form must be in the hands of the local treasurer by Jan. 31 to receive the credit off the current tax bill.
Kris Ostermann, Oneida County Treasurer