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Saturday, November 22, 2008

An Open Letter to Nancy Pelosi

Madame Speaker,

I am the owner of Mad About Books (www.madaboutbooksonline.com), a used bookshop in Oglesby, Illinois. My business has been clobbered by lackluster sales and choked credit, and could go under before year's end. Such a collapse would be a severe blow to our local economy -- and to the view of the nation's economic strength -- and deal a crippling blow to the ability of many Americans to afford quality books for education and pleasure in these trying financial times. In addition, the loss of our online international sales will further undermine an already unstable world economy, and the export of American ideals.

In order to prevent the failure of my business, I would like Congress and the Bush Administration to take action to provide immediate, targeted assistance to allow my business time to develop a plan to assure its long-term viability. I understand such emergency assistance would be conditioned on compensation restrictions, a prohibition on golden parachutes, rigorous independent oversight, and other taxpayer protections to ensure that my company -- and not the taxpayers -- bears the full burden of repaying any costs that are incurred.

I am sure you will agree that books will continue to play a crucial role in the expansion of our nation's knowledge, culture, and leisure, at home and in the global marketplace. I am willing to work with Congress to meet all conditions, and provide a plan for long-term viability and competitiveness, in order to receive short-term assistance through the Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP) recently authorized by Congress.

Thank you.