Diners want some privacy to go with their meals
During a visit to San Francisco, I had the pleasure of restaurant dining with wonderful service.
Numerous times while dining in Lexington, the waiter hovered over me and my guests.
I don't need to be asked 15 times during a meal if I need anything else. It is very disruptive to a serious conversation between guests, or to any conversation, for that matter.
When a person dines out, the enjoyment comes from the companionship, conversation and, in most cases, the treat of not having to prepare the food — not to mention the expense for the experience.
Waiters in Lexington, unfortunately, are primarily paid a salary and tips, and their real wages come from tips. I am not blaming the waiters for wanting to turn tables quickly, but please do not take my order and hand me the check at the same time.
If Lexington truly wants to show its Southern hospitality, not only on a day-to-day basis but also for visitors attending the upcoming Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games, please let their dining experience be what it is supposed to be — enjoyed, savored and not rushed.
If my waiter truly wants a great tip from me, leave me alone unless I need you, and don't hand me the check and say "Have a nice day" as soon as I'm seated and you take my order. That's a major turnoff.
Fix the greediness
If investment banking giant Goldman Sachs is guilty of fraudulent greed, it is a bad guy. If politicians take huge contributions from corporations seeking political favor that feeds their corporate greed, then the can-be-bought politicians are bad guys.
Mohandas K. Gandhi once said, "It is difficult but not impossible to conduct strictly honest business. What is true is that honesty is incompatible with the amassing of a large fortune."
The sorry state of today's American economy, so entangled in out-of-control greed, seems to support Gandhi's statement.
Deregulated capitalism, what many would say is our country's greatest strength, is becoming a weakness that threatens to bring down the American empire.
How can a nation that has "In God We Trust" inscribed on its currency allow evil greed to corrupt and disrupt the economy? Greed kills; if untreated, it is a terminal disease.
Does anyone of faith really believe a just God favors Wall Street over Main Street?
There is hope for America when it solves the individual and corporate greed problem and takes big money out of politics.
Paul L. Whiteley Sr.
Debt crux of anger
The May 10 letter writer, "Debt is taxation," is obviously angry with the Reagan and two Bush presidencies.
After all, those presidents' executive skills were to max out three credit cards and declare bankruptcy.
The three Republican presidents since 1980 added $7.6 trillion to our national debt, and President George W. Bush alone created $4.36 trillion in debt, even though President Bill Clinton left him a handsome surplus of $236 billion (per the Congressional Budget Office) with which to begin his presidency in 2001.
Combined, the rest of our presidents, from George Washington on, rang up a total of less than $2 trillion. And here's a shocker: All presidents from Harry Truman on have reduced the gross federal debt, except for Reagan and the two Bush presidents.
All of which adds up to the letter writer saying that $7.6 trillion in Republican national debt is bad.
With all the writer's anger about the debt the Republicans have saddled us with, his compliments of Tea Party members have me scratching my head.
In the face of an agreement between Iran's leaders and Turkey and Brazil to exchange half of Iran's uranium stock for enriched uranium, it is now even more important for our government to enforce stronger sanctions against Iran.
There is no question that Iran's goal is to develop nuclear weapons.
Iran's increased numbers of centrifuges, acquisition of trigger mechanisms for bombs, additional enrichment plants and, according the CIA, the tripling of its uranium stockpile last year makes it apparent the kid-gloves diplomacy the United States has been attempting has not worked.
The State Department for the past three years has publicly said it has been investigating companies for potential violations of sanctions against Iran.
During that time other government agencies have publicly identified companies that were investing more than the allowed amounts in Iran's energy sector.
As Secretary of State Hillary Clinton states, we need to enact crippling sanctions that "would be necessary to deal with this tremendous threat to our national security."
Come on, President Barack Obama and Congress: Do something about this threat before it is too late for us, Israel and the rest of the world.
Greece should be a warning to America.
When the European Union presented Greece with a trillion-dollar bailout, it brought to light the impact of social programs on countries.
There are only 11 million people in Greece. Greeks who have been given everything in the entitlement programs were rioting in the streets because they weren't getting their handouts anymore.
A trillion dollars is a lot of money; my calculator won't even go that high. When you divide that amount by 11 million people, that is a lot of money per person.
All of Europe is feeling the effects of its socialist programs and policies, and Washington is determined to send our tax dollars to help.
We need to worry about ourselves and let the European Union worry about how it is going to cover all of its handout obligations.
In the United States, there are millions of people on welfare. I bet many of them have been on welfare long before any recession began.
This needs to stop. Entitlements need to be cut. It is time for those who have taken advantage of the tax dollars of the working class to get out and find a job and quit sitting at home waiting on me to send you a check.
Drug testing is required for me to work and make money to pay taxes, so drug testing should be required to get welfare.
Many Americans are sick and tired of working hard so someone else doesn't have to.
No H-L help needed
As John McEnroe would say, "You cannot be serious!"
I'm referring to the Herald-Leader's endorsement in the May Republican primary for the U.S. Senate. The audacity of it was mind-numbing.
I'm asking other Republicans to join me in stating that we are fully capable of a thorough examination of the issues and the candidates' capabilities and of deciding who should be selected for our party.
The Herald-Leader should stick to its party.
And isn't it interesting, and I guess to be expected, that the editorial board cannot write about the Republican primary without dragging George W. Bush and Dick Cheney through the mud.