It is so good to see local people putting aside their normal routines in an effort to improve the country’s financial distress.

We will get better government when people demand it. Willingness to take to the streets in great numbers is an effective way to direct attention to problems and their solutions.

Peaceful street protests can make a huge difference.

Hubert Kauffman

Oxford

The “budding anti-capitalism protest movement” might want to reconsider and become the “pro-social-conscience-in-capitalism” movement.

Throughout American history, the economic classes have clashed while simultaneously enabling full participation in “the American dream.”

That is, that the lowly, through hard work and, more recently, continued education, might rise and the mighty, as a result of greed and disregard for the well-being of the masses, might be brought low in a kind of social justice.

A new version of that “American dream” is emerging. It calls for those individuals and corporate bodies who have survived and even thrived in these “tough economic times” to become the benefactors to the lowly, whose numbers increase with the demise of the “middle” class. How?

Hire and train, become involved in promoting work-force housing, support government efforts to legislate economic opportunity, support those troublesome “entitlements” such as Social Security, food assistance and, yes, even welfare programs, that benefit untold numbers of your fellow

Americans. Do these things with as much fanfare as you like, proclaim your good works!

We lowly will, as we are able, continue to work hard in your factories or in your service sector.

We’ll continue, as we are able, to seek training and educational opportunities that will benefit us and you. And we will continue to be born, grow up and grow old in this shared America. Help us, we’ll help you. Who knows, we may become as you, or you as us!

William Hobbs

Falmouth

Bill Nemitz’s column Oct. 5, “Finally, it’s a purpose both sides agree on,” should appear in large print on the front page of every newspaper in America.

Instead of fighting over what color state we live in (red or blue), or whether our political agenda aligns more with liberal or conservative ideas, we – all of us, including those we hired to work for us in Washington – need to listen to Maine’s Pete “The Carpenter” Harring, who said, “Let’s focus on what we can agree on” and also to Demi Colby, who said we need “to come together in solidarity for a common goal.”

The people, beginning with small groups and growing stronger day by day can make a difference.

The Mother’s March on Polio in the 1950s started a drive that helped lead to the Salk vaccine and virtually wiped out polio, and when those in government told too many stories which turned out not to be true the people rose up and forced an end to the Vietnam War.

It’s time for Congress and the administration to come together for the good of us all. When congressmen make statements like “the president’s job bill is dead on arrival,” it means they are unwilling to compromise or even talk about possibilities.

Do they not understand that they were sent to Washington to work for all the people? Compromise has always been the hallmark of a democracy and it is the best way out of this financial morass that they created.

Please, please, please, congressmen and senators, listen to Bill Nemitz, to Pete Harring and to Demi Colby. Your  job is to find the common ground and plant the seeds that will return us to prosperity.

David Murray

Falmouth

Many letters to the editor about taxing the rich are evidence that these people should be called “sheeple,” because they are like sheep and simply suck up all their education from mainstream media. The fact is that if we taxed the bottom 50 percent of incomes just $43 monthly, that would raise $60 billion.

According to the IRS, for 2010 the bottom 50 percent paid 2.39 percent of their incomes to the government. The top 50 percent paid 13.65 percent and the top 1 percent paid 23.27 percent.

People who blindly follow the crowd and spit out statistics that are wrong are a big part of the reason this country is in the mess it is now.

If people who voted took time and did their research before voting, we could have avoided this terrible mess.

Karen Bonsant

Windsor

According to Adam Smith himself, money should be thought of as “the wheel that circulates wealth,” because money does not work unless it circulates. There is a very good reason for referring to it as “currency.”

The folly of a focus on accumulation rather than circulation is painfully obvious when we have companies unwilling to start their money flowing down in the form of salaries until it starts flowing up in the form of purchases.

The problem we face is not so much the inequity between the rich and the rest of us, who has the biggest pile, as it is the inevitable stagnation that happens when the dominant flow stays in one direction for too long. Take a look at the Dead Sea.

Can we trust the market to come to its senses in this regard, or do we have to elect a government that will invest in the country’s greatest asset, its producer/consumers?

George F. Dole

Bath

It can cost a ton to buy Maine-, U.S.-made stuff

“Buy Local” is costly. Trying to buy local produce can put a wicked dent in a person’s pocketbook unless your wallet is a lot fatter then mine.

Buying Maine-made items and products are 30 percent more. A tomato grown in Cape Elizabeth is $1.71, a package of four from California is $2.79. Maine blueberries or strawberries are $5.50, from Florida or California, $2.99.

Vermont maple syrup is $8.50, the same size from Maine is $11.50. Even gasoline, last month it was $3.79 in Portland when in Massachusetts it was $3.47 on the same day.

I have always tried to buy U.S.-made whenever possible, but if you find a item produced here it is almost always noticeably higher in price, whether it be auto parts, tires or shoes. You might say you get what you pay for, but unless money isn’t an issue, sometimes a person has to shop price and buy a toaster or pliers made in China and hope they last. (They won’t.)

Greg Locke

Portland