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Letters to the editor: Minnesota surplus, Wisconsin deficit; St. Croix County yellow vest revolt time?

Minnesota surplus, Wisconsin deficit


Read recently where the Minnesota Governor left the state with a $1.5 billion surplus. The Wisconsin Governor left us with a $1.1 billion deficit. I thought that a Republican-controlled state would be better off fiscally, then one with a Democratic Governor. Guess I was wrong.

Eugene Hoff


The GOP has stolen voters' power


The voters spoke in November when they elected Tony Evers and Josh Kaul to pursue the agenda they espoused on the campaign trail. Now the lame duck legislature has changed the rules to rob Evers and Kaul of the ability to deliver on their promises.

Their blatantly anti-democratic "sore losers" legislation makes mockery of the election, a stain on Wisconsin's historical reputation for clean government and fair play.

Back in October when he was running for re-election, State Rep. Shannon Zimmerman presented himself as the voice of bipartisan cooperation. He told the RiverTown papers: "I am firmly of the opinion that the division and polarization we see today can be resolved ... We are stronger together and once we've all become sick and tired of the rhetoric and hyperbole, we may find an era of cooperation and true results." Yet Mr. Zimmerman voted with his fellow Republicans in the lame duck session to thwart Wisconsin voters.

I fear the GOP has wasted an opportunity for compromise with a moderate Democratic governor willing to reach across the aisle.

Republicans have essentially told the majority who elected Evers and Kaul that their priorities don't matter. How can polarization in Wisconsin not continue to deepen and become more toxic as a result of this betrayal?

Meanwhile Mr. Zimmerman's happy talk about bipartisanship rings empty, hollow, and hypocritical.

For all I know, some Republicans may actually believe that permanently locking more than half the electorate out of political power is good for Wisconsin. No matter how you spin it, it's bad government to weaken the power citizens legitimately wield at the ballot box. It's your power and mine the GOP has stolen, and we must remember that when we go back to the polls less than two years from now.

Thomas R. Smith

River Falls

St. Croix County yellow vest revolt time?


Did you know there is a potential carbon tax resolution being proposed by Roy Sjoberg of the St. Croix County Board? This potential resolution is of the same cloth that has sparked the Yellow Vest revolts in France. Overburdened taxpayers in France are revolting against the redistribution of wealth by global elitists like Macron, Sjoberg and others.

In 2013, the National Association of Manufacturers released a statement saying (in part): The cost of using natural gas would increase by more than 40 percent. Prices at the pump would jump by more than 20 cents. Electricity rates in Wisconsin households will increase 11 percent, the tax would deal a blow to employment with a loss of worker income equivalent to 28,000 to 39,000 jobs in 2013 and 56,000 to 68,000 by 2023. The economic sectors hardest hit in 2023 would be agriculture, energy-intensive manufacturing and non-energy-intensive manufacturing.

The NAM also states: The increased costs of these critical fuels will impact every person and business in Wisconsin. This is bad news for manufacturers, which consume one-third of our nation's energy supply ... To make matters worse, many Wisconsin companies that compete internationally will be placed at a disadvantage as their foreign competitors operate without similar costs.

As a "Washington Times" headline stated: "Political disconnect: Paris riots reveal public's unwillingness to accept a carbon tax." The turmoil sparked by French President Emmanuel Macron's proposal to boost gas taxes is just the latest example of an emerging political truism.

What's the best way to explain carbon taxes? It's a tax on breathing! No one would be exempt from the tentacles of a carbon tax. But China is exempted? Farmers, with farm bankruptcies rising in Wisconsin, how do you plan on absorbing these potential extra costs?

To view the video of Sjoberg proposing this carbon tax, go to

Please wear a Yellow Vest to the St. Croix County Administration Committee meeting at 5 p.m. Dec. 17, St. Croix County Courthouse, in protest against this potential carbon tax resolution. Speak out while you can. Contact your Board supervisor at:

Darla Meyers


Library funding


I read with great interest Roy Sjoberg's plea to the Hudson City Council on Nov. 19 advocating an increase in local library funding. While I believe we're all concerned about the financial sustainability of our local library, I think it's important to highlight that Mr. Sjoberg is also the leading proponent of cutting funding for our local library at the county level. So on one hand he advocates increased funding, but on the other hand he leads the effort to cut funding for our local library. With all due respect, I thought it was important for our local library supporters to be aware of this contradiction!

Bob Long

Town of Hudson