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Fight tax increases

Texas Gov. Abbot did his best to reduce property owners’ taxes due to their slow, steady increase statewide. Property owners are hurting by this periodic continued rise several years after the last property tax increase.

For example, if your property evaluation in the year 2000 was $100,000 and today it is valued at $300,000, your property has increased 200%. Where will it end? Inflating your property does not benefit you, it benefits them, so they can collect more. It only hurts the property owner. This snail pace tax increase on property will change America. People will be less willing to own property and more willing to rent where they can more easily move anywhere in the nation they desire and not be tied to paying property taxes and staying in one place.

Now we come to contest your property increase. Should you just submit to the new increase? Of course not, you are not a sheep that follows the sheepherder. Fight it every time you get an increase.

And to believe that you own your property, it is an illusion. It is more like you are paying rent for your property and you get punished for fixing it and making it look nice. And in reality, you own nothing but the headaches that come at being a property owner; and if you fail to pay your taxes, you lose your property and out the door you go.

This young generation saw the light and is not into owning a home at all. Home ownership will become part of the past in America.

Rafael Madrigal


Trump trial wasn’t rigged

Katy Tur, reporter, covered Donald Trump well before 2016. At the speech at Trump Tower the day after the verdict, she noted he seemed tired, disheartened. He would drop his hands to his sides as he gestured and spoke, which she opined she had never seen him do before. That action could have made his martyrdom seem all the more authentic, although he is always blameless apparently in his mind, a victim such as one in a soap opera. That level.

Blameless people often indulge in projection, whether conscious of the practice or not. A folkloric example of projection might be “the pot calling the kettle black.” The pot is unhappy with its condition so it takes comfort in calling the kettle what the pot is.

Trump “did nothing wrong” (his words). Everyone is against him (victimhood). The trial was “rigged.” How, asks Andrew Weissman, a former prosecutor. David Pecker recited in court the “catch and kill” practice for old friends like Trump (many years). So, his tabloid bought the stories and stored them in a safe so they would never be published when they could damage Trump’s campaign, and at the same time, created stories to damage his opponents and published them.

Hope Hicks’ testimony was interesting and apparently truthful. These people were insiders in the Trump orbit. Their testimony and others joined with texts, phone calls and recordings were part of the damning evidence. There exists a transcript of the trial that belies any claim that the trial was “rigged.”

Shirley Rickett


Trump blasted

In 2016, a great number of Americans, who, ironically, were not in the majority, elected to the highest office of the land a very peculiar person. Folks around the world, including the USA and the candidate himself, didn’t believe he could win. Well, surprise, surprise!

One newspaper in Sydney, Australia, thought the outcome was so outrageous that it stamped “W.T.F.” in huge letters across its front page!

In his four-year tenure, President Trump lied uncontrollably and he disparaged many innocent hard-working folks with his comical name-calling silliness, simply because they did not bend the knee to his highness. I have no idea why he felt the need to engage in this. I suppose he figured it would please his constituents.

When he lost his re-election bid, the biggest lie that came out of his mouth was that he was robbed! His supporters fell for it, and the Jan. 06, 2001, fiasco erupted!

Kari Lake, a 2022 GOP candidate for governor of Arizona, said this: “If you want to get to President Trump, you’re going to have to go through me, and you’re going to have to go through 75 million Americans just like me. And I’m going to tell you, most of us are card-carrying members of the NRA.” (Hoo-boy, tremble-tremble.)

Like Trump, she also lost and she also falsely claimed she was robbed! It’s possible that some of those card-carrying members of the NRA had enough sense to vote against her. Even Even they couldn’t swallow her shallow, intimidating threats.

Carl Sagan said, “One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we’ve been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It’s simply too painful to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back.”

“United we stand, divided we fall.” Now more than ever, Americans need to heed this.

Italo J. Zarate


Trump opposed

Back in the eighties, I was a member of the Republican Party. That was when the party had some respect for the Constitution and Bill of Rights. It was the law-and-order party, but no more.

The party is paying the legal bills of a convicted rapist, felon and orange Jesus. He is the son of a man who once was arrested at a KKK function and like his father has used the “N” word to describe black people

The worshippers of Trump are planning a Christian nation. U.S. House Speaker Mike Johnson is a total supporter of doing away with our democracy and going with the Laws of Moses to rule this nation. Would lying, adultery and coveting have Trump stoned to death? Whom would Trump blame it on? Joe Biden or Barack Obama?

Christianity has had a long and evil influence on governments. The First Reich was the Holy Roman Empire’s rule of Europe. Convert to Catholicism or die was rampant throughout Europe; there was only freedom for the Catholic clergy. The Second Reich was the German Empire (a Christian nation) from 1871 to1918. It was followed by another Christian nation, the Third Reich. Each was worse than the one before. Their National motto was Geh Mit Gott (go with God).

Now Trump is pushing the idea of a Fourth (unified) Reich. The Christian and white nationalists love the Idea.

Vote for Trump and destroy America.

Hank Shiver


This wasn’t a show trial

Donald Trump’s wannabe running mate, Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., says the Manhattan hush-money trial was “the most outrageous travesty” he has ever seen. He says, “This is a quintessential show trial. This is what you see in communist countries.”

In communist show trials, juries are packed with party loyalists, whereas in the Manhattan trial the 12 jurors were approved by attorneys from both the prosecution and the defense. In communist show trials, the defendant loses his life. In the Manhattan trial, Trump lost a little campaigning time. In a communist show trial, the justice system is run by a totalitarian dictator without elections. In the Manhattan trial, the prosecutor, governor, president and everyone else down to dogcatcher is elected in the light of day in free elections.

MAGA Republican voters believe whatever a party bigwig like Rubio says. They just want to go with the flow, have some fun wearing red hats, and save their own skins. In fact, Rubio and his boss are the real witch-hunters in America. Democrats don’t seem to have the ability or the will to expose the propaganda Republicans are smearing them with.

Kimball Shinkoskey

Woods Cross, Utah

Religion and politics

I have been following the trial of Donald Trump about his million-dollar sex escapade on various formats in the news media. Most seem to be sticking with the facts and some are totally out in space with their coverage and analysis of what’s happening.

I was a single-family home builder in my last working part of my long life and an investor in the stock market trying to build up our retirement nest egg. But the news coming down to this old man from the building industry was that Trump had absolutely no regard for the contractors working for him. He would stiff them in a heartbeat for his benefit and fortune.

Some 20-odd years ago when he was talking seriously about running for office and he was aiming for the top spot in America, I thought he didn’t stand a chance because of his work ethics, no experience in governing and lack of compassion for others.

How could anyone coming from a country (being first or even second generation) with a dictator running the country even think about voting for such an individual after living under the boot-on-the-neck style? This amazing creature has so perverted the law-and-order system in America that it looks like a rubber stamp for his crowd.

The preachers running around like chickens with their heads cut off, making all kinds of excuses for Trump’s behavior! They are at their conventions asking why the people are leaving the church, so to speak. When the Pharisees learn why they are in that profession and start teaching that Jesus only matters in life, not politics, then the people will attend again. I saw and left the Baptist church long ago because politics was becoming the main point in the services after 30 years of attending two and three times a week. A sad day in my life!

My opinion only is this: Politics has no place in the church and Trump has no place in America’s politics.

Bill Williams


Conviction addressed

The legal system is not corrupt when your entire inner circle are convicted felons, and you get convicted on all 34 counts. You are judged by the company you keep.

Don’t tell me the economy is in shambles when on May 16, the Dow Jones industrial average topped 40,000 for the first time in history. Year after year, the U.S. has produced more billionaires than any other country (704 in 2022 and 748 in 2023). Unemployment is still low at 3.9% compared to 6.3% when Donald Trump was in office. Yes, inflation is higher, but it is in the rest of the world. California is the fifth-largest economy globally, and Texas is the eithth-largest. Numbers don’t lie. When Donald Trump says “our country is going to hell,” he’s lying. It’s a fear tactic that the other side always says to scare people. Again, numbers don’t lie.

Is our country perfect? Of course not. There are so many issues and opportunities to improve our country. Still, our Congress refuses to address them because they constantly attack one another instead of working together to attack the problems.

Republicans control the House, and Democrats control the Senate. Instead of governing, they vote straight party lines and don’t get anything done.

Back then, we had a “give and take” mentality to get things done. Today, it’s a rare event. Once upon a time, we would disagree on political issues, but our political leaders were decent people, no matter on which side of the aisle they voted. Now, we have significantly lowered the standards. The judgment against Trump told us that no one is above the law. Yet, our Republican friends say it was a “rigged” case, that the charges brought against a former president were petty. Well, which one is it, Republicans? On one side, you claim that your party is the party of “law and order.” Really? Is it only foul when Lady Justice finds you guilty?

It’s unbelievable how the presumed Republican nominee and his entire inner circle are criminal felons. Yet, 48% of Americans would still vote for them. I admire those Republicans like Mitt Romney, Liz Cheney and Jerry Moran who stand up (and speak up) against Trump and his rhetoric of hate and racism.

It’s not a question of being liberal or conservative any more. It’s a question of right and wrong. Do you want these people running our country?

Raul Banda


Abortion bans deemed unfair

Abortion bans are unfair to women, monitoring their pregnancy by who and when and who bears the cost. Maybe have 24-hour police surveillance outside their homes to make sure of a successful pregnancy or get convicted for murder.

Where does the individual who got her in that predicament, persuades her and willingly offers to pay to terminate the pregnancy, fit in?

Herschel Walker in Georgia impregnated not one, two, but several girlfriends, persuades and pays for their abortions, gets to run for politic office, gets full endorsements from the traitor himself and those same reckless lawmakers who made that absurd law. They then easily convince their followers to support his political campaign. Very interesting.

I wonder if inflation has driven common sense out of range.

Juan Gonzales


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