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IQ: $6.2 billion cut 

Even with the war against Iraq still unresolved, George W. Bush is proposing a $6.2 billion cut over the next 10 years in veterans' benefits. Is this his way of showing support for the troops?

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Jerry White

Medical physicist North End

Is President Bush's plan to cut $6.2 billion in veterans' benefits a good idea? It's right in line with what we've seen all along from the Bush administration -- a transfer of wealth from people who need and deserve the money to those already well off.

What should be cut instead? Corporate subsidies. Sweetheart contracts to politically connected companies.

What should veterans think about the cuts? The veterans I know are honored to have served their country and don't feel a sense that the country owes them for what they did, but I think we do.

How could we better help veterans? Transferring their health-care system to a system of nationwide single-care health insurance so that not only veterans, but all Americans, have adequate health care.

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Tom Roberts
Retired school principal Dublin/Academy area

What's your view on the president's plan to cut veterans health benefits? Isn't it a bit ironic that, given the present war with Iraq and given the tremendous contributions vets make to society, we're trying to cut veterans' benefits at the same time we're looking at tax cuts that disproportionately affect working-class Americans?

What would be a better target for tax cuts? I agree with most Americans that we shouldn't go forward with the tax cut. It's especially inappropriate at a time when expenditures have soared due to the war and homeland security.

How could we best help vets? It's important that they continue knowing that they play an important role in our society -- both in peacetime and in wartime.

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Gillian Hoggard
Correctional officer Ordway

What's your read on President Bush's plan to cut veterans benefits? It's stealing from Paul to pay Peter. The war was expensive, and Bush has to find money somewhere. At the moment, he's taking it from prisons, among other places.

Do you find the timing of these cuts ironic? I'd say so, given that he's just created another 150,000 veterans.

What would be a better area to make cuts? Begin with cuts in the Bush administration. This country is top-heavy with management.

Do you know any veterans? A lot -- mostly from the Vietnam War. Resources to meet their needs are disappearing. I think the federal loan programs for vets and the GI Bill are fabulous.

How could we better help vets? Stop sending them off to wars on the other side of the world.

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