Town Hall Meeting

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By Joe Starkey | September 1, 2010

Congressman Randy Neugebauer started off his town hall meeting with the Pledge of Allegiance, a prayer and Posting of the Colors by the Dyess Base Honor Guard. He then recognized their service with a 19th District Congressional Coin. He next recognized Boy Scouts of America for their 100th Anniversary. He awarded three members of a local Boy Scout troop with the Congressional Coins and a flag flown over the U.S. Capital Building on the day of the 100th Anniversary.After commenting that the country needs a lot more praying and a lot less talking, he stated that the “good news from D.C. is that Congress is in Recess.” He stated that he enjoys Recess not because of escaping Washington but that it gives him a chance to come home to the Big Country and “talk to his bosses.” He then opened the Town Hall Meeting by listing his main concerns of Spending/Debt, Security, Big Government, Taxes and Energy.{{more}} He opened the discussion by stating that the United States currently borrows 42 cents of every dollar Congress spends. Our major creditors include China and many of the Far East countries. He continued with studies that show the American people are getting their finances in order by saving more, paying off their debt and spending less. They are questioning why the Federal Government cannot do the same.Next was his discussion of the belief held by some that the Federal Government is the creator of all jobs and the money should flow through it. “NOT TRUE,” said Neugebauer, “and it is time for the government to stop picking on the people who create jobs. This country was not build on credit from others and we need to quit depending on other countries for our jobs, factories, and other necessities of our current standard of living.” He then opened the floor to questions and asked that those with questions line up to speak with a microphone set up in the middle of the conference room. The first question had to do with the apologies President Obama was making to other countries. Congressman Neugebauer responded that America does not owe anyone an apology after all the times we have helped other countries at our expense. He stated we need to reassess our foreign policy/spending and our relationship with the U.N. He said the U.N. was particularly bothersome as they seemed to be very selective in which countries they enforce human rights.A question on the value of the dollar was answered with observations that the dollar has been the world standard currency for a very long time. However, U.S. banks are now on a road trip to many countries to discuss settling debts to China in Chinese currency instead of U.S. dollars.Energy independence was next and the reserves locked up in the oil shale of Wyoming brought up. Response covered both that the technology is expensive and we have to start planning yesterday to transmission from a hydro-carbon based technology before we can be energy independent. Part of this problem is that the Federal Government actively provides disincentives for U.S. companies to develop new technology. The Interstate Highway system started by President Eisenhower started a great surge in commerce. We have not improved or even maintained it well and it is showing. “You cannot have commerce without a transportation system.”Other comments included “Every time you turn something over to the government – you lose some of your liberty.” To rein in the EPA, you have to go back to Congress and have them make the law clear instead of the fuzzy wording that currently allows interpretations that Congress never intended. You also need to stop the effects of the many lawsuits that these fuzzy interpretations created.Social Security needs to keep the promises made while putting the program on a financially sound basis.Congressman Naugebauer took this opportunity to talk about his belief that opportunity in America was based on “pulling your own wagon.” In times of trouble, neighbors might help you pull yourRetired State Representative Bob Hunter talking with Mr. and Mrs. Robert Briley. Photo by Joe Starkey. wagon for a while but no one expected to ride while others pulled. Some did find a way to ride the wagon without ever pulling. Now the government is encouraging people to get on the wagon and quit pulling. Some people are even considering taking their wagons somewhere else. Disincentives from the government are why we are building our new factories in other countries. “We need a renewal of basics where you pull your own wagon but in hard times your neighbors help you pull – not pull while you ride.” He added later that the current tax system is one reason companies are looking to other countries when they need to build new factories.His comments on term limits were based on his bout with cancer. Do you choose an intern or a surgeon with a history of successful operations? Do you want to fly with a pilot just out of training or one with 20 years of successful flights? The other part is that all of Congress does have term limits in that Representatives serve two years and Senators six before their term is limited or extended by the voters.Congressman Neugebauer concluded the Town Hall saying “we’re in hard times but I have faith that if we can put the job back in the hands of Americans – We will solve the problems.”