I am writing this letter to comment about the headline on the front page of the March 11 Maine Sunday Telegram. I’m hoping that a little feedback might go a long way. The headline, “Over 1,200 public workers double dipping,” was catchy, however it was very misleading. The subhead implicated those who work for the state or public schools as the culprits of something unethical — “double dipping” — while private-sector retirees took a “hit.”

We all know that many readers do not read an entire article. It would be so easy for those who did not take the time to read the whole article to assume that educators were getting more than their fair share, receiving pensions that didn’t rightly belong to them, or, even worse, being paid twice by the state for doing one job.

Please be sensitive to how your headlines might cause gross misperceptions about people. Others could not even succeed in the public or private sectors without being educated by the so-called “double dippers.”

Moreen R. Halmo


Shame on those state employees who take advantage of the loophole allowing double dipping while continuing to work at the same job. And some of these people are involved in the education of our children? What an example to set for Maine’s school kids.

How can these people look at themselves in the mirror and feel good about themselves? In their heart they must realize this is not the right thing to do.

Daniel Goodwin


Romney rattles just like George W. Bush did

Mitt Romney’s public assertion that immediate military posturing will stop Iran’s efforts to make a nuclear bomb is extremely dangerous. He echoes the same mind-set as George W. Bush, who believed a war with Iraq would be quick and painless.

Any commander-in-chief who chooses gun rattling as our best form of diplomacy is himself a loose cannon.

Dorothea Fournier


Congress erodes values on which nation stands

My sincerest apologies to the dead of the Civil War. Your deaths were in vain.

Your sacrifices have been ignored by all members of Congress who voted for their own pay raises and benefits, the inclusion of their cost-of-living allowance with the military, their allegiance to big business, their arrogance, their complete dismissal of working individuals as the people they should serve and their obedience to their party and lobbyists.

Government of the people, by the people and for the people did not survive. This did not happen overnight. One hundred fifty-plus years have passed since these words were spoken by a true American.

Will it take 150 more years for this country to become a shining example to the rest of the world?

E.L. Eaton


LePage misrepresents safety net as ‘welfare’

Gov. Paul LePage represents what is wrong in American politics.

In his weekly speech on March 3 he railed about America becoming a “welfare” country and Maine becoming a “welfare” state.

It seems that he classifies citizens who are in need of government assistance as unnecessarily dependent upon the “nanny” state. What he calls welfare is in reality a humanitarian safety net that is, at best, frayed. Consider these examples:

An 18-year-old man who is in a coma following a horrible car accident. He needs 24-hour nursing care. His parents are devastated emotionally and financially. MaineCare is funding nursing home care: welfare or safety net?

A 3-year-old girl with autism needs specialized therapy services. Her parents work full time and have two other children. Private insurance funds only a small portion of services. The balance of services are funded through Child Development Services and MaineCare: welfare or safety net?

A 68-year-old retiree suffers a stroke that results in paralysis of his left side. His wife and children care for him at home, but need help from home health agencies to make this possible: welfare or safety net?

A 19-year-old single mother is trying to get on her feet emotionally and financially. She receives in-home parent skill training, vocational job training and funding for child care services: welfare or safety net?

To add insult to injury, LePage ended his speech by praising Sen. Olympia Snowe’s public service. Doesn’t he understand that Snowe is leaving the Senate because of the polarization of politics exemplified by LePage?

It is hard to imagine that Snowe found LePage’s praise anything but ironic and hypocritical.

Peter Sentner