Think about our country’s military presence abroad. According to official sources, we had 737 military bases in other countries in 2005.

Do people think there is any connection between our military expenditures and the budgetary problems we are dealing with as a nation, as a state, in our towns and schools?

These bases have nicely paved roads (and golf courses and officers’ clubs), but my town’s roads are filled with potholes. We pay plenty in taxes to the federal and state governments, but now the governor wants to suspend revenue sharing to municipalities, which will increase our property taxes.

Do we really think we can spend trillions of dollars — not defending ourselves, but creating distrust of our country all over the world — and having no effect on our lives here at home?

I want to see Pentagon spending reined in. Extremely costly projects are going ahead, projects that our military leaders have said they do not want or need. Congress, however, keeps voting for these projects because some powerful senator or representative wants a few jobs in his district or state.

We don’t need to live in a country where our infrastructure is not maintained, where our schools are not properly funded from federal tax dollars, where our seniors must choose to buy medicine, food or heat.

We are a rich country, but you would never know it driving the back roads of central Maine.

Susan Siens

Unity