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posted: 7/12/2012 5:00 AM

As voters we can control politics

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As voters we can control politics

I am not anti-union, but political and union negotiations have gone unchecked for too long. Big money is needed for anyone entering politics, including unions who have votes and money to help win elections. Once elected lawmakers can lose their jobs without party support and are generally expected to vote along party lines to keep it.

This we understand, but recent news about the University of Illinois vice president getting an extra $360,000 in pension benefits, firefighter add-ons that cost Chicago $84 million a year, stories of double dipping, etc., make me angry and frustrated. The Illinois debt is the worst in the nation.

For years many politicians agreed to union demands to keep peace. We have reached a point, as Greece has, where we have to know if and how we can pay for past and continued growing debt. House Speaker Michael Madigan has delayed talks until later in the summer. Too many Democrats and Republicans in Springfield have been arguing and ignoring the critical need for reform for too long.

Politicians can only be controlled by the voters. Union members deserve retirement security for loyal service, but they must be reasonable. They have to know that there are abuses that corrupt the system and have to be addressed. Politicians are elected to represent the public good and are not doing their job. The only fuel to push them is the voter. The silent majority is not a list of names in the cemetery. It is those of us who do not vote. There is a saying, "Fight crime, vote them out." Only the voters can do this, maybe the time to do it is now.

Wiliam McNutt

Des Plaines

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