Guest columnist " John Fanning: A note to President Obama
Dear Mr. President:
I realize you have many challenges as you assume your duties as our president. However, many past presidents have faced difficult challenges also. It is unseemly and unprofessional when you keep whining about the challenges you inherited, and continually blame them on the previous administration. Many of us have faced challenges in our lives, and when we have done so, most of us have sucked it up, faced the challenges and tried to find solutions.
You also keep referring to the present economic situation as a crisis, a disaster, a catastrophe, and other words that invoke fear. You seem to be stoking the fires of panic. If you will remember, this tactic of “fear” was severely criticized by you, referring to the Bush administration, while you were on the campaign trail. Be a cheerleader, Mr. President, as you were and promised you would be and expressed so eloquently in your inaugural address. Remember your slogan, “we can do it”!
Speaking of difficult economic times, I remember paying 15 percent for a mortgage in 1982 when I purchased a home in Chicago. At that time, the interest rate was as high as 20 percent, and the inflation rate was 12 percent. Unemployment was on its way to 10 percent. I don’t remember whining. We did have to cut back to make the payments, but we had done this before a number of times in our lives.
Speaking of mortgage payments and falling home values, I wonder if you could help me. I am retired; I have no pension; I have a retirement and savings portfolio which has lost about 20 percent; I live in a home where the value has decreased at least 20 percent, and the very real prospect of higher inflation with the trillions of dollars you are spending in your first 30 days.
All of my working life, my family has done without many times so we could afford our mortgage payments. We rented until we could afford to buy our first home. We have lived in homes where the value decreased, and due to job losses, have had to sell homes at a loss. We have paid high mortgage interest rates as I mentioned before, and we have lived through very high inflation. Not one time has the government stepped in to help us, and not one time did we ask the government to do so.
But now, since you are spending trillions of dollars to help others, many who have been irresponsible, many who are con artists and will receive a payoff for being so, and corporations who have failed business models, not to mention the pork projects and earmarks too numerous to mention here in the so called stimulus package, I would ask you consider helping me and my family. You can call it a payback for being responsible.
We need to sell our home. I respectfully request a payment for the difference between the purchase price and the selling price. This is about $70,000. In addition, I request a one-time payment of the difference in the value of my savings and retirement portfolio from the time the economic downturn began and the end of next month. Note: I am not asking for what could be more money as the economy continues to decline. I want to be fair.
If you need my bank account number for direct deposit, I will be happy to provide it also. This would save the necessity and expense of writing checks.
Thank you in advance, Mr. President.
Yours very truly,
John Fanning, Dillon
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