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Editor, The Beacon:

Re: Tom Walker’s letter to the editor, May 25, 2023

I don’t agree with Tom Walker’s opening premise that wealthy people derived their wealth “from usurping the world’s natural resources and creating financial and banking regulations favorable to the result.” The financial and banking regulations are created by the elected government officials and other employees of the government. Are his usurpers the people who take gold, silver, oil, etc., from the ground?

This country was designed as a bottom-up country. “We the people …” My grandparents were not in agreement with the 16th Amendment in 1913, which gave Congress the power to collect taxes on income. Yet in 1913, less than 1 percent of the population paid income taxes at the rate of only 1 percent of net income. Now everyone who earns enough income is paying tax. “Wealth” is not taxed until after death, when an estate tax return is required.

What bothers me is when the politicians suggest that we should power our houses with windmills and only drive electric cars, etc. First, they should look at the problem Europe has had with windmills. They killed a lot of birds until the Europeans realized that they could paint stripes on the poles and blades to lower the bird kill. But there is still a problem with the windmills in the ocean that kill fish.

Electric cars might be great, but first we need charging stations and other infrastructure. Until some creative inventors come up with better ideas, we’re all using fossil fuels, not just the wealthy.

Global warming and rising seas might just be cyclical. The example that I always use is the heat wave in 1911. It was 103 degrees the day my mother was born in Chicago. Heat waves and rising seas probably can’t be fixed by legislators.

How do wealthy people become wealthy? Sometimes, it’s education and luck. One of my grandfathers was a traveling salesman. He sold “strike anywhere” Diamond Matches. During the Depression, Diamond Match had trouble paying their employees. They were paid in stock certificates. By the time Grandmother died in 1957, she was worth enough that an estate tax return had to be filed. Diamond Match stock paid for my sister’s and my college education.

Ruth Ann Fay, DeLand


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