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October 18, 2012

Language rehab needed for pols

The Daily Star

---- — Language rehab needed for pols

I wonder sometimes if most politicians need some time in language rehab. We see plenty of proof that politicians and political commentators have an ample vocabulary of derogatory names and slurs. Republicans and conservatives seem particularly well-versed in those types of remarks. 

The remedy might (should) require practice in several areas, now mostly ignored.

For a start, I suggest learning to work on (1) cooperation; (2) compromise; (3) compassion; (4) tolerance; and last but hardly least, (5) truth. This would just be a part of such a rehab program. 

Marginal note: I doubt I am the only one who dislikes the tendency of the media and others to refer to former office-holders by the titles they once held — President, Governor, or other.

It seems to give those people an authority they no longer have — if they ever did. 

William F. Roberts


Romney’s positions have changed

During the first presidential debate, Romney said: “I will not reduce the taxes paid by high-income Americans.”

True, Romney said he would sign a 20 percent across-the-board tax cut to everyone, and that the top bracket would come down from 35 percent to 28 percent.

That plan would give people who make as much as $3 million a year a quarter-of-a-million-dollar tax cut.

Without specific details, why should we believe that Romney isn’t going to blow up the deficit with another gigantic tax cut?

Romney also said: “But No. 1, pre-existing conditions are covered under my plan.” True, his plan would cover pre-existing conditions, but not for people who don’t already have insurance. Romney’s campaign manager Eric Fehrnstromn came out afterwards to say that he didn’t mean to say that, because he only meant people who already had a policy.

Romney argued: “We’ve had 43 straight months with unemployment above 8 percent. If I’m president, I will ... help create 12 million new jobs in this country with rising incomes.”

However, the morning after the debate, the Labor Department reported that the unemployment rate fell to 7.8 percent in September, from 8.1 percent the prior month.

Obama joked: “When I got onto the stage, I met this very spirited fellow who claimed to be Mitt Romney. But it couldn’t have been Mitt Romney because the real Mitt Romney has been running around the country for the last year promising $5 trillion in tax cuts that favor the wealthy.

The fellow on stage last night said he didn’t know anything about that. Gov. Romney may dance around his positions, but if you want to be president, you owe the American people the truth.”

Jim O’Leary


Socialism isn’t

good for us

Regarding the tape found of President Obama saying “I believe in redistribution!,” now the truth is known. “Redistribution” is just another way of saying “socialism.”

So my question to our president is, if socialism is so good for us, why are the regular people in socialist governments out in the streets rioting?

I’ll tell you why! Because socialist government promises things it can’t deliver, year after year.

They are out of money in those countries — just exactly what the president is trying to do to us. He must know that people with money will always be on top, even in all the socialist countries. Socialism doesn’t change that!

Even in communist countries, you have your rich. So stop trying to change our democracy! Stop dancing with the Hollywood celebrities and do your job — keep America safe! We just lost four Americans because you didn’t go to security briefings.

If you had gone, you would have known that terrorists were ready to attack our embassy — it was the anniversary of 9/11. The terrorist chanted, “We are all bin Ladens.”

If our government had acted, four Americans would still be alive.

Please stop your dancing, golf, fundraising and talk shows on our dime. 

I voted for you in 2008 for hope and change, but it’s only been shame and change. In 2012, I won’t vote for you.

It’s time for change, not shame. We’re Americans, and proud of it. 

Thomas Merlino


Many reasons

to protest pipeline

Concerning the Sept. 19 letter in which a reader asked, “Why protest a pipeline?,” the reasons are too numerous to list here, but the issues he mentioned brought these points to mind.

The pipeline is tied to hydrofracking, and the heavy industry that would move in once it is in place. It’s not simply a little ditch that is covered up, and nothing looks different. 

Some insurance companies refuse homeowners’ insurance, or will charge a higher rate, on properties where a gas pipeline is being put in. Some banks will not give mortgages on properties where there are gas leases or pipelines, since heavy industry depresses resale values.

Local county officials said the pipeline will bring jobs. Did they research this, or did they simply take the word of company officials?

Pipeline workers are recruited and imported from areas that already have experienced workers. This influx will raise the cost of housing temporarily — good for anyone who has a place to rent, bad for local people looking for affordable, long-term housing. 

The writer mentioned that you can “ride ATVs and snowmobiles over it, and cross-country ski.” True. And the public sees an easement as a right of way and thinks they don’t need to ask permission of the landowner to access the land. 

He also states that you can grow crops on it. That is of little consequence on forest land.

The pipeline has a 600-foot easement, in which trees may not be planted.

To any landowners who are affected — you can say no.

You do not have to allow surveyors on your land, as there is no right of eminent domain yet.

And if you have agreed already, you can change your mind.

For more information, there are many websites, including 

Deborah Blue