Imagine my surprise when I opened my Sunday paper to find our history-stunted governor appealing to the shrill-seekers yet again (“LePage calls IRS the ‘new Gestapo,'” July 8).

The Geheime Staatspolizei and the IRS, identical twins? Look, Governor, open up a history book. The Gestapo was its own judge, jury and executioner, and rare it was for anyone brought in by the Gestapo for questioning to emerge physically and/or mentally unscathed or unscarred.

You may not like the Supreme Court’s decision, but you do our country a great wrong by comparing our current institutions, especially the Obama presidency, to one of the most evil regimes in history, Hitler and German Nazism.

To think that an American governmental institution could bypass our guaranteed constitutional rights; present charges to secret judges and hidden courts with no chance for the suspect/accused to refute or even know the charges; secretly kidnap its own citizens and then whisk them away to be brutally tortured on foreign territory to provide deniability, well — oops, well, I guess you’d have to go back to the Bush presidency to find examples of that.

I don’t know, maybe you’ve actually got something here, but it doesn’t help if it’s eight years late. Will you please, please get up to speed?

Scott A. Caulfield


The governor has drawn a parallel between the Nazi Gestapo and the IRS. As someone whose family was decimated by the Gestapo, I have to ask: How many people have been killed by the IRS? Does the governor know something that most people do not?

John P. Broida


Gov. Paul LePage was criticized for his use of the word “Gestapo.” In wriggling away from that, he showed a more disturbing side of his uncouth profanity and lack of professionalism as governor: He said that anyone offended “ought to be goddamned mad at the federal government.”

Taking God’s name in vain is far worse a curse than saying “Gestapo.” The governor of Maine has a foul mouth.

The ease with which Gov. LePage spouts off such profane language, or tosses off down and dirty insults to others, shows he is not fit for office.

Paul Kelly


Maine Democratic Party Chairman Ben Grant objects to Gov. Paul LePage’s characterization of the IRS, as expanded by Obamacare, as the new Gestapo. Grant calls the remarks “extreme language” that the governor uses “to misinform, degrade and insult people.”

While I understand the politics of the chairman’s response, I’d appreciate his response to this question: What would the IRS — or the FBI, Homeland Security Department or Oval Office — have to do before you would agree they were like a Gestapo? How much freedom are you willing to surrender? Where is your threshold?

Just on the tiny off chance that Bill Nemitz is maybe, possibly, currently working up a column on the subject, perhaps he’ll include his response to my questions as well.

Tom Zimmerman


Constituents, not career, should be Congress’ priority

The Congressional Reform Act would put in place the following provisions:

1. No tenure and no pension. A congressman collects a salary while in office and receives no pay when they are out of office.

2. Members of Congress (past, present and future) participate in Social Security.

All funds in the congressional retirement fund move to the Social Security system immediately. All future funds flow into the Social Security system and Congress participates with the American people. It may not be used for any other purpose.

3. Members of Congress can purchase their own retirement plan, just as all Americans do.

4. Members of Congress will no longer vote themselves pay raises. Congressional pay will rise by the lower of the Consumer Price Index or 3 percent.

5. Congress loses its current health care system and participates in the same health care system as the American people.

6. Congress must equally abide by all laws it imposes on the American people.

7. All contracts with past and present Congresses are void effective upon passage of this act.

The American people did not make this contract with Congress. Congress made all these contracts for themselves.

Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, so ours should serve their term(s), then go home and back to work.

I’d vote for anyone who supports this.

Carl Miller


“Fire them all!” Remember last August when that was the battle cry on most Americans’ lips?

However, here we are back to the same old, same old. “My political party has the right answer!” “No, my political party has the right answer!” You know what I say? None of them has the right answer.

If anything, the political parties (both old and new) have done more damage to this country than all terrorist organizations combined ever dreamed of.

We have taken America and turned it into a political civil war at a time when we truly need to work together. We need to turn off that talk radio and news for a while and just stop. Talk to our neighbors while keeping just a one-word rule in mind: “Respect.”

Being a serving member of our political system is supposed to be a civic duty, not a career.

I have yet to hear a single candidate stand up and say, “I do not belong to any political party. I’m simply an American who is not corrupt. I want to serve my country for both my fellow Americans as well as the Americans who have not yet been born. I will serve both the 99 percent as well as the 1 percent because both of them are Americans.”

As it is now, I don’t believe a single member of our political system unless they’re hooked up to a polygraph. How sad is that? So sad that it’s tragic.

Give me your grocery clerks, give me your retired businessmen, give me your electricians. Average Americans from both the 99 percent as well as the 1 percent who want to do their eight years, then get out. And do it together for the benefit of this country as a whole.

Tim Emery


Writer, sex-abuse survivor thanked for their outreach

Thank you, Bill Nemitz, for your column “Male victims of sex abuse find courage, then freedom” (July 1), and thank you, Edward, for sharing your story in order to help other victims of abuse.

Jennifer Quimby


Incumbent with good ideas merits re-election to House

I am writing to support the campaign of Helen Rankin of Hiram for re-election to the Maine House of Representatives.

Rep. Rankin listens to the voters and she understands how people in our part of Maine live. She understands our concerns for our families, our future and our way of life in Maine.

I have had the opportunity to listen to some of Rep. Rankin’s ideas, and I believe that she has a wonderful vision for our bright future.

At this time, our economy is challenging for many in our communities. We need someone in the Legislature who can speak for the people of Maine, whether they have been here for generations or have just moved into town.

Please consider voting for this great Mainer, our neighbor and friend, Rep. Helen Rankin. She is the best choice!

Diana Bell


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