EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Opinion

December 9, 2013

Sound Off

Housing woes

All you seem to hear about with charities are food drives, walk for hunger, food kitchens, etc. Is anyone doing anything to develop a charity to help people with housing? There are so many families living in their cars. It is not just alcoholics and drug addicts that are homeless or sleeping in shelters. Tenement houses are no longer being built, just condominium complexes with exorbitant rents, often too unaffordable for the oppressed middle class. The government keeps cutting benefits for the needy and the elderly. How about more housing assistance? Whatever happened to rent control? In today’s world renters are looked down upon. Well, maybe they just didn’t want the burden of increasing property taxes and water bills and repairs, high mortgages, computers replacing humans and jobs going overseas. The middle class is being crushed.

Ellsbury

The Yankees obtained Jacoby Ellsbury for $153 million. Yes Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. Here is a guy who is an accident waiting to happen and they throw a fortune at him. This is insane and a slap in the face to the middle-class and the people who pay to see him play. You just may go and when you get there learn he is out that day because he broke something. The entertainment world -- pro sports, TV stars, movie stars, big-name singers -- are the biggest cause of the rift between the rich and the poor.

Break even

Mayor Zanni has stated that municipal employees “took two 10 percent pay cuts, then received zero (pay increases) for three years” as justification for the new contractual pay increases. That is a fact, but I think not the entire story. If I can remember back in time, they were given a choice between those levels or pink slips to their co-workers. They fully deserve credit for choosing the former. So is their sacrifice any different from those of the Methuen taxpayer? I think not. We’ve all had to tighten our belts a little, and for those on a fixed income it’s been even tougher. So, if the mayor truly wants to operate the city “like a business”, it’s simple. If you make a profit you spread the wealth. Otherwise, you find ways to at least break even.

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