Reckless spending is root cause of fiscal crisis

Re: "Sequester growing more likely for March 1," Feb. 7

I encourage civil servants to contact their congressional representatives to remind them that they work for Virginians and not the president.

Sequestered cuts will have grave impact on the region and my disposable spending.To compensate, I will cancel planned home projects, plans to purchase a new car, unnecessary spending at local restaurants and stores and commitments to my charities.

Let's be honest and acknowledge the root cause of the problem was precipitated by reckless spending.It's time the Democrats stopped blaming Republicans, listen to what is being proposed and work out a deal. This administration got its tax increases; now it is time to responsibly address the spending side.

Allowing this insanity to move forward will not move my independent vote to the left.Congress needs to develop a plan that's workable for all Americans and stop using my paycheck as a political football.

-- Robert Schmidt


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Doctor admits abortion is traumatic

Re: "Subsidized churches can't complain about regulation," From Readers, Feb. 10.

Edd Doerr mentioned the "rights-of-conscience of the vast number of women of all faiths" to defend abortion and the Health and Human Services mandate.

But Dr. Julius Fogel, a psychiatrist and obstetrician who performed thousands of abortions, says there is also is a troubling message-of-conscience: "Every woman -- whatever her age, background or sexuality -- has a trauma at destroying a pregnancy. A level of humanness is touched. This is part of her own life. When she destroys a pregnancy, she is destroying herself. There is no way it can be innocuous.

"One is dealing with the life force.It is totally beside the point whether or not you think a life is there. You cannot deny that something is created and this creation is physically happening ... it is not a harmless and casual event as many in the pro-abortion crowd insist. A psychological price is paid."

-- Thomas J. Pierpoint


Telework tax credit will benefit entire community

I was thrilled to find out that the Telework Tax Credit Bill, sponsored by Delegates David Ramadan, R-Dulles, and Barbara Comstock, R-McLean, was passed by the Virginia House of Delegates 59-38 with bipartisan support. The bill will provide a $250 tax credit to employees who telecommute at least 25 hours a week, 45 weeks a year.

This tax credit would certainly be an added bonus to the existing benefits I receive by working from home, which include more time with family, greater output for my employer and the ability to volunteer in my community.

I was provided the opportunity to telecommute full time in 2007 and I've worked remotely ever since.Because I don't have to commute into the office every day, I save roughly two and a half hours per day, which equates to 50 hours per month -- a typical work week for most. I am able to greet my children when they arrive home from school, help with homework, care for our home, prepare meals so we can eat together as a family, and ensure my children are engaged in extracurricular activities.

The monies saved on gas, vehicle wear and tear, lunches out, dry-cleaning, take-out and fast food dinners has allowed me to contribute more to my 401(k), more to our children's 529 college plan and pay off our mortgage faster.

While I have always been an involved parent volunteer, this year I am serving as co-president of the Lowe's Island Elementary School's Parent-Teacher Organization. So besides enabling individuals to responsibly prepare for their family's future, the benefits of telecommuting are wide-reaching for the entire community.

-- Megan Mancuso