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Withholding pay is not enough

In this July 30 2013 phoArmy Pfc. Bradley Manning is escorted out courthouse Fort Meade Md. Few Americans living memory

In this July 30, 2013 photo, Army Pfc. Bradley Manning is escorted out of a courthouse in Fort Meade, Md. Few Americans in living memory have emerged from obscurity to become such polarizing public figures _ admired by many around the world, fiercely denigrated by many in his homeland. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

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Updated: September 6, 2013 6:08AM

Gov. Quinn’s plan to withhold the legislators’ paychecks until they resolve the pension crisis is not a solution to this unconscionable fiasco.

You know what your boss would do if you were consistently unable or unwilling to perform your job. He’d “can” you. So we should fire every last one of the incumbent incompetents at the next election.

Lee J. Regner, Park Ridge

Illinois needs national attention

President Obama should declare Illinois a disaster area that qualifies for a low-interest federal loan to solve the pension problem. Expecting the state to solve the problem without federal help is like expecting a miracle, and miracles do not happen.

Kenneth J. Epstein, Edgewater

Bradley Manning’s real guilt

Although Bradley Manning was found innocent of espionage, he remains guilty of many other charges:

He is guilty of being a whistleblower whose revelations embarrassed the State Department and Pentagon.

He is guilty of thwarting the intelligence agencies’ much-lauded secrecy, security and omniscience.

He is guilty of forcing long-overdue accountability upon the federal government and armed forces.

He is guilty of exposing the tip of a clandestine iceberg that has grown exponentially in the last decade.

He is guilty of spurning the fearful silence and unquestioning allegiance demanded of soldiers and civilians since 9/11.

He is guilty of complying with the military’s slogan “Army of One.”

He is guilty of testing the David-versus-Goliath theory.

He is guilty of putting his apathetic and distracted countrymen to shame.

He is guilty of releasing classified information that blurs the distinction between the infantile terms “good guys” and “bad guys.”

He is guilty of failing to rouse Americans from their decade-long indifference to war.

He is guilty of provoking the government to make an example out of him, forcing it to adopt the Soviet model of “This is what happens to dissenters.”

He is guilty of refusing the timidness and dedication to a paycheck that silences millions of his fellow civil servants.

He is guilty of challenging our preconceptions of courage and the traditional image of a warrior.

Paul Mack, Warrenville

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