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Government `of the people'

The Monitor notes (March 7) the reelection in Burlington, Vt., of Bernard Sanders, ``the nation's only Socialist mayor.'' Readers, cherishing the image of the self-sufficient, independent Vermonter, may be surprised to learn that there is no inconsistency in Sanders's election. Under a series of ``socialist'' governors, two calling themselves Democrats and seven, Republicans, the state's general fund spending rose from $15 million in 1950 to more than $365 million in 1984, an increase of 2,333 percent.

Vermont is as pretty as ever, but its rock-ribbed independence has become a museum relic. Daniel E. Woodward Montgomery, Vt.

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``2 cents too much,'' by Joseph C. Harsch (Feb. 21), struck a responsive chord in me and I would even go further to suggest that as long as the administration is getting out of the railroad business it ought also get out the mail business and turn it over to free enterprise and honest competition. A big plus in doing this would be to help reduce the budget deficit by billions of dollars now shelled out in overpaid salaries and costly pensions. It would also take the political pressure off Congress by the threat of a voting bloc of hundreds of thousands of postal workers. Furthermore, if it's wrong for the private sector to have a monopoly, then it should be wrong for the government to have a monopoly. Charles F. Rasoli Long Island City, N.Y.

The article [``Love of labor, lost?''] March 6, by Nancy Olson, which says, ``The demise of the family farm worries me. . . . I lament the loss of young people who are not only unafraid of hard work, but relish the experience of giving their all to a task, mentally, physically, and spiritually,'' should be given publicity far and wide. The world needs close family ties, which are strengthened by cooperation in work, fun, planning, thinking.

(If government funding is needed, how regrettable is the President's veto [last] week.) Emma A. Hunt Charlestown, N.H.

Letters are welcome. Only a selection can be published and none individually acknowledged. All are subject to condensation. Please address letters to ``readers write.''

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