Your lead editorial on Sunday, "Mad As hell," expressed exactly how I and many of my friends feel -- helpless with the total lack of morality in our elected officials. What kind of world will our grandchildren inherit?
Lois Meierhof, East Meadow
Two simple steps would begin to address the problem: public funding of campaigns and term limits. We are in a chicken-and-egg conundrum.
Politicians don't relish fundraising to finance their campaigns. However, with the cost of campaigns increasing they need to get money. We end up with a "he who has the gold rules" environment.
Politicians, however, have created the "club government" atmosphere. They like trappings of being in office. It becomes their rationale for everything, as opposed to really governing. So the rules support their continuing tenure, just look at election district gerrymandering!
The lust for continuous and increasing power, along with the seniority system, has bastardized our representative form of government. We need to return to the citizen legislator. Term limits will do that.
Bob Detor, Port Washington
How much more can Nassau homeowners take? It seems almost every day for the past month, Newsday has published scandal after scandal regarding the fraud, waste and corruption in Nassau County government. The latest quid pro quo for campaign donations is tax-reduction firms getting big fees for reduced assessment services.
Instead of fixing a broken system, Nassau County government allows further benefits for politically connected firms. Fees for these services have grown into the millions. Of course, if the settlement favors the homeowner, Nassau County receives less property taxes. Some say it is the way government works. No, it is the way government doesn't work.
Until residents demand integrity in our government at every level, the cheat goes on. The cheat goes on and on . . .
Anthony Mignone, Massapequa Park
I strongly agree with Newsday's editorial about the anxiety of Americans.
People know the economy is changing, yet their paychecks remain static, super PACs are drowning out their voices in Washington, and the elite are amassing more wealth and power while the majority of Americans are forced to tread faster than ever just to stay afloat.
Fortunately, there are pragmatic solutions. Here's a start: First, drastic campaign finance reform requiring overt disclosure of donations to all super PACs. Second, cap interest on college loans so the next generation isn't saddled with debt. Third, prohibit American companies from intentionally relocating abroad to escape paying taxes and use those funds to create jobs at home and rebuild our crumbling roads, bridges and commuter transit.
The anxiety Americans feel is historic, but the solutions are out there if our leaders are only bold enough to look.
Rep. Steve Israel, Huntington
Editor's note: The writer represents is New York's 3rd Congressional District.
Thank you for Newsday's excellent investigative reporting and bringing these stories to the public. It is time to put an end to these elected and nonelected officials' shenanigans. We are mad as hell and we are not going to take this anymore!
Alfred Roldan, Lake Grove