Vets deserve police escorts during funerals
The Lexington police department's decision to quit police escorts for funerals is, without a doubt, the worst decision it has ever made.
The department said the cost of overtime for officers is too high. What about the cost of overtime for the festivals that are so frequent downtown?
I have seen seven police cars blocking streets from Vine Street to Short Street. It should take only one car at each intersection with the officer tending the road block, not enjoying the festivities like any other spectator.
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I praise the sheriff's department for taking over this most important duty. When someone loses a loved one, they don't need to hear that it costs too much for the city to show the proper respect.
We are losing our veterans at a very high rate and it really hurts our men and women who put their lives on the line for America and our way of life to be told this. Veterans applaud the Fayette County Sheriff's Office for a job well done.
GOP's new clothes
Why would anyone vote for a Republican? After the Republican Tea Party terrorists hijacked the debt ceiling and nearly brought the country to economic ruin we see that today's Republican Party has been stripped naked and exposed for the entire world to see.
And the unclothed Republican Party isn't a pretty sight.
Exposed is the contempt for any government program that aids those in need. If the Republicans had their way, Medicare, Medicaid and even Social Security would be no more.
Why would anyone want to punish those in need of medical care, food and shelter in order to continue to give unneeded tax breaks to the richest Americans who have more than they could ever need or use? It should be a criminal offense to try to accomplish such a cruel act devoid of simple human compassion.
And what's so upside down about all of this is that the Christian right claims the Republican Party as the party that most supports its religious beliefs.
Did Jesus say "take what the poor have and give it to the rich?" No, I believe Jesus told a rich young ruler to sell all he had and give it to the poor.
The Book of Acts tells how the early Christian church lived a communal life where those who had more gave to those who didn't until all were the same.
I believe the one word that best describes today's Tea Party-proud Republican Party is "selfish." Republicans: the party of self.
Actions speak louder
The Republicans are for putting America back to work — for creating jobs.
Well, no, they went on vacation, leaving 4,000 FAA employees and 70,000 other workers out of jobs for nearly two weeks, by refusing a temporary extension of the FAA's authorization.
OK, then, Republicans are for cutting the debt and deficit. Well, no, their actions — which they claimed were to cut off a $30 million subsidy to provide air service to small communities — cost the U.S. Treasury $15 million a day in passenger tax revenue, money that enriched the airlines.
Well, then, what are the Republicans for? They are for what they have always been for: creating depressions and recessions, and using government to make rich people richer.
Extremes: New norm
The Aug. 4 Washington Post column, "Common hot weather myths," did a good job of disputing the myth that extreme drought and flooding can't both be due to climate change.
But there are a couple of additional scientific factors as to why global warming could be contributing to, possibly even responsible for, both extreme droughts and extreme floods.
Basically, warm air holds more water vapor than cold; in arid areas this means increased evaporation and, hence, drought. This is part of a "feedback loop" where increasingly warmer air holds more water; that water vapor then holds yet more heat in an unending cycle.
Satellite observations since 1988 over the world's oceans indicate that water vapor has been rising about 1 percent a decade.
However, the larger, controlling factor is that heat is energy. It's this additional energy in the atmosphere (in the form of increasing warmth) that drives both daily weather and longer-term climate change.
The increased frequency of extreme weather suggests a pattern where the global climate system seems to be adjusting to its warmer and wetter atmospheric conditions.
If so, the cumulative effect of continuing (and increasing) greenhouse gas emissions will probably intensify this weather situation over time.
Choose to agree or disagree, but that's a glimpse of the climate science where side-by-side extreme floods and extreme droughts are possible — indeed likely.
I do not know if cartoonist Joel Pett takes suggestions, but I would love to see him depict the current Washington mess as follows:
Titled "Grover's Lemmings," with Grover Norquist in front heading over a cliff (with parachute) followed by Virginia Rep. Eric Cantor holding a bottle of $325 wine with his smirk, leading House Speaker John Boehner, who appears to be a dog on a leash being dragged along, followed by Sen. Rand Paul dressed as Napoleon with his right arm inserted into his jacket and a sword in his left hand prodding Boehner in the posterior, followed by faceless lemmings pulling the United States over a cliff.
Words to the wise
■ The only jobs politicians can create are government jobs. They can only create them by first taking the money from the private sector.
Since government doesn't produce anything of salable value, there is never a net gain with government jobs. When politicians tell you they created X amount of jobs, they are lying to you to get your vote.
■ If you want your credit rating to improve, you reduce deficit spending and pay down your debts to lower your debt-to-credit-limit ratio. The idea of borrowing more and spending more to maintain your credit rating only makes sense to politicians.
■ The difference between the United States and most countries is that an American's liberty is endowed upon them at birth — government is only there to protect liberties, it doesn't grant them. In most other nations, citizens don't have liberties, only privileges granted by those in power at the whim of those in power.
■ Americans' individual liberties extend only until they encroach on another's liberty. Your rights can never cost another citizen anything. If they do, they cannot be considered rights.
■ Americans do not have the right to the following: food, clothing, housing, a job, transportation or health care. You only have a right to that which you have worked for and can afford to buy with money you've earned.
Now, act like an adult and be responsible for your actions.