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LWV League of Women Voters of California Education Fund

Smart Voter
Monterey, San Benito, Santa Cruz Counties, CA November 2, 2010 Election
Candidates Answer Questions on the Issues
United States Representative; District 17

The questions were prepared by the League of Women Voters of California and asked of all candidates for this office.     See below for questions on Economy, Federal Budget, Energy, Health Care, Campaign Financing

Click on a name for candidate information.   See also more information about this contest.

? 1. In this time of high unemployment, what are the most important steps that should be taken to improve our nationís economy?

Answer from Mary V. Larkin:

Stop spending and cut unnecessary government programs. Stop bailouts and expansion of government. Privatize whenever possible; it has proven effective at lowering costs and improving quality. It also means less people on the government payroll. Don't raise taxes. It may seem like the very rich can afford to pay more but why should we demand that of them? That isn't moral. Furthermore it hurts prosperity. The economy does well and jobs are created when there is incentive for people to prosper. Taxes and regulation take away that incentive.

Answer from Ronald Paul Kabat:

Our economy is ill at several different levels.

First Priority = Federal Debt.

Our President has currently stated that 42 cents of every $1.00 coming to our Treasury goes towards paying our National debt. Unless we identify and prioritize the controls on Federal spending, we will be headed towards a financial crisis. I highly recommend reading the Congressional Budget Office (CBO)report titled 'The Long-Term Budget Outlook' (Revised August, 2010).

When our President ran for office, he said that he would not allow Congressional 'earmarks' in any bill coming before his desk. Contrary to his campaigning, the first financial bill he signed into law contained over 8,000 'earmarks' from members of ALL political parties. It's not too late, I would hope that he would show us the leadership that our country needs by instituting the policy that he preached to us in his campaign.

That was then and this is now. We've got to get the Federal government's debt under control or we will soon be known as the first country with the stamp 'Owned by China'!

Second Priority = Jobs. (A multi-tiered solution.)

A.) Janitorial, construction, culinary arts, food service, factory, etc. categories.

We currently jail 2.2 million people. Approximately 10% of these individuals are jailed for property crimes like stealing, robbery, burglary, etc.. Many performed the crime to simply pay for essentials like food, utilities, and rent for their family. The costs of jailing these citizens is approximately $9.5 billion/year. The emotional costs to their families cannot be measured. However, they are placed in this situation SIMPLY BECAUSE THEY DO NOT HAVE A JOB - - - but the jobs are actually currently present for them in our country!

I have developed a policy which I call the 'Reset Rule'. It is listed at my website. It addresses our jailed citizens' unemployment situation by applying a comprehensive solution to our illegal immigration issue.

The 'Reset Rule' has been called unique, equitable and fair. The money saved ($9.5 billion) from not jailing our citizens for lack of a job could be used to decrease our Federal debt and/or partially applied to other programs, like Education. It could also be used to reduce the costs of the 'Reset Rule'.

B.) All other job categories.

The Federal government must clarify and use its tax and economic policies to provide stability in the private sector's job market. Our private sector cannot make decisions to invest in new equipment and jobs if they cannot plan because of the unclear nature of Federal regulations.

For instance - - I have been trying to provide my clients with tax planning. However, for the past several years, Congress has made substantial tax law changes in October and November and made these new laws effective RETROACTIVELY to the beginning of the year! Not only did these Congressional changes make tax planning unfeasible but it also made obsolete many of the IRS forms that are printed in September. (Added government money wasted.)

President Kennedy's administration created the Investment Tax Credit which helped the private sector by subsidizing the cost of purchasing new equipment for businesses. This idea helped subsidize a demand which created jobs in the private sector. This law did not change for several years and helped the private sector in planning its equipment purchases and job expansions.

We need more ideas and creativity in our Congress. I would like to 'bring down the wall' between our Democrats and Republicans to make them, once more, work for the stability and good of our Nation.

? 2. How should federal budget priorities be changed, now and into the future? How will you balance the costs of military action overseas and national security with the costs of domestic needs?

Answer from Ronald Paul Kabat:

Forthcoming and please see part of answer to previous question.

Answer from Mary V. Larkin:

We should require the federal budget to cover only their Constitutional responsibilities and get them out of everything else they are involved in at this time. Give more power back to the states. We can have a secure country and a strong military without sacrificing the needs at home. Bring our troops back home from the Middle East where we are wasting our time and money and making more enemies. Let's take care of the crumbling USA. Give our returning soldiers jobs fixing our infrastructure which is in desperate need of repair (bridges, highways, etc). We did enough damage to our own security by getting involved in international politics. It's time to mind our own business and take care of this country again.

? 3. What, if anything, should be done by the federal government to address our dependence on fossil fuels or spur the use of clean energy?

Answer from Ronald Paul Kabat:


Answer from Mary V. Larkin:

History shows us that federal involvement leads to massive fraud, corruption, mismanagement and excessive cost. Only the free market can manage this problem in a way that will be sustainable. Maybe the government could offer tax incentives for private companies legitimately researching new energy sources. If a good source of energy is not discovered by the free market, it will not be cost effective and therefore will just be a financial black hole for this country. If we're broke, the environment will suffer too so it's a lose-lose situation for all.

? 4. What, if any, changes should be made to current federal policies or programs that promote or provide health coverage for Americans?

Answer from Mary V. Larkin:

First of all, the new health care bill must be overturned. Where does the government get the authority to mandate that we buy a product? How is it moral for them to sacrifice the elderly, who will often be denied treatment, in favor of those who previously, for whatever reason, didn't have health care insurance? Sometimes those uninsured simply decided they would rather spend their money somewhere else. Why should that be our problem? The health care plan is "supposed" to cut costs by being more efficient. To do this their plan is to have us implanted with the Veri-Chip to streamline the administration of the medical industry. Google it or look at my website. It is not a secret or a conspiracy theory. Several industries are already invested in this technology. Will you be chipped? If we don't stop this now I'm afraid it will soon be too late to resist. There are solutions to make health care more affordable. Tort reform is a start but again, government needs to get out of the way. The costs need to have a more immediate, direct effect on the patient so they don't abuse the system either. If enough people buy catastrophic insurance it could be made affordable for everyone, even the very sick. The fee for less urgent visits and check-ups could be paid directly to the doctor without all the paperwork bringing the costs down for the doctors. Those savings could be reflected in their fees making it affordable for everyone and reducing the trips to the E.R. for minor ailments which cost Medical and Medicare so much money. There are many more ideas out there worth a try.

Answer from Ronald Paul Kabat:

Medicare - Can we spend smarter?

Doctors in the USA are getting smaller and smaller Medicare payments for medical services. Many cannot afford to take on new Medicare patients because of the dwindling payments. So, how about the following idea?

Would Medicare participants needing surgery (ie. joint, hip, etc.) allow us to fly them overseas (India, Thailand, etc. with our excess US aircraft and US Air Force personnel) to have the surgery and physical therapy?

We would have to insure that the foreign surgery centers were enforcing USA standards and that they could be using doctors who were previously trained here in the USA.

The savings from these surgeries could be used to supplement our current Medicare payments to doctors in the U.S.A. so that they would be able to accomodate more Medicare patients with other medical issues.

Medical Care and Our Financial Debt - -

The current 2,700 page health bill has some good points but needs to be supplemented. (ie. Tort Reform, etc.)However, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has also identified costs in this legislation that can financially strangle our Nation. If our Nation dies a financial death, we will not be able to pay for anyone's care. Therefore, some of the current bill may have to be de-funded in order to preserve our Nations future financial health. Just like the emergency room at the hospital, we must employ triage to the bill.

The Law of Unintended Consequences - - -

At my website, I list some of the unintended consequences of the 2,700 page bill.

Example 1 - Under the new Health Law we are required to spend millions of work hours to file millions of Forms 1099-MISC on corporate purchases. However, the IRS will NOT be able to reconcile many of them because the corporations (like Staples, Office Depot, etc.) may be on a fiscal year while we have to file the forms based upon a calendar year. (Argh!)

? 5. What, if any, changes should be made to federal rules on campaign financing or disclosure of political expenditures?

Answer from Mary V. Larkin:

It is unfortunate that it takes so much money to win a campaign. I think it behooves all honest people to hear the position of every candidate, even if they don't have money. If someone is really interested in the position of a candidate there are resources, like this one, which offer that information. It may be a responsibility that lies more with the voting public than with the government.

I cannot say I know what is wrong or right with campaign finance rules although as a candidate I should be an authority. The government makes it so difficult to do anything or understand everything with their thousands of pages of rules and regulations. This is a problem for small businesses also. The books I've received on campaign finance rules are something only a lawyer could love (and they are long). Fortunately, yes fortunately, I probably will not raise enough money to have to worry about their extensive rules and forms. That also makes me free from any obligations if I were to win the office.

Answer from Ronald Paul Kabat:

Forthcoming and partially covered at my website.

Responses to questions asked of each candidate are reproduced as submitted to the League.  Candidates' responses are not edited or corrected by the League. No candidate may refer to another candidate in the response.

The order of the candidates is random and changes daily. Candidates who did not respond are not listed on this page.

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Created: January 6, 2011 15:01 PST
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