If Clinton is praiseworthy, why not Obama?
Let me say up front that I am not a fan of either Bill Clinton or Barack Obama.
I am writing this because some of my Democratic friends praise Clinton and his presidency but have problems with Obama.
People praise Clinton for getting our economy out of difficult economic times. That is just not true. According to the National Bureau of Economic Research (the official record keeper) the recession of the early 1990s ended in March of 1991, Clinton didn't become president until January 1993.
Clinton is not hesitant to take credit for balanced budgets but what would have happened if "Hillarycare" had become law?
Would the budget have been balanced if Congress hadn't put pressure on Clinton to agree to a capital gains tax cut in 1997?
I believe the biggest difference between Clinton and Obama is in the "war on terror."
There was no real response by the Clinton administration to the "Black Hawk Down" catastrophe, the 1993 World Trade Center attack, the 1996 attack on Khobar Towers, the 1998 attack on east African embassies, and the 2000 attack on the USS Cole.
I have serious disagreements with Obama over arms control, military budgets and treatment of certain allies, but I can't imagine Clinton giving the OK to kill Osama bin Laden or Anwar al-Awlaki without doing a poll first to see if it would benefit him.
I don't think Obama will ever lose his law license or be cited for contempt of court like Clinton was.
Thugs are out there
On May 16, my son-in-law was driving home from work. It was around midnight. Seeing that he was low on gas he stopped at a Marathon gas station on Paris Pike. He entered the store to pay for his gas. There was a group of young men in the store.
As my son-in-law attempted to leave, two of them blocked his way. He walked around them and walked toward his car.
Realizing that they had followed him, he pumped his gas trying to ignore them. He told them, "I don't want any trouble. I just want to get home to my family." To which one of the men lifted his T-shirt to show a gun in the front of his pants and leered, "No man, you don't," at which point two of his buddies showed they too were carrying guns. It was a silent threat.
My son-in-law drove home feeling sick at how easily his life could have been cut short.
I want to know how much longer we have to put up with these kind of thugs and why more is not being done to keep them off the streets.
Where are our police? Why are they not out there? Or are we to just get used to it as part of everyday life? I don't think so.
It's time parents stepped up and took responsibility for their children. Control your kids. Don't blame everyone else when little Johnny ends up dead on the street or in jail.
Rein in banks
The J.P. Morgan Chase $2 billion-plus derivative trading loss is a wake-up call. We forget that the major cause of the catastrophic great recession was the result of the too-large-to fail banks knowingly buying liars-loan home mortgages, packaging and selling them to trusting clients as good investments, then betting through derivative trading the same investments would fail.
Yet our chief law enforcement officer, Attorney General Eric Holder, hasn't arraigned a single perpetrator. Perhaps the old axiom "don't bite the hand that feeds you" explains this.
Large banks funneled millions of dollars into the 2008 campaign coffers of President Barack Obama — Holder's boss — and powerful congressional candidates of both political parties.
In the savings-and-loan meltdown in the 1980s, 2 percent the magnitude of the bank debacle, 1,000 S&L officers were convicted of felonies, 300 were imprisoned.
In contrast, the same too-large-to-fail bankers are still running the banks.
Congress passed the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010 containing hundreds of pages of regulations. J.P. Morgan Chase speculative trading losses demonstrate the regulations are too lax or that bankers and their lawyers have already discovered loopholes in the maze that allow them to continue business as usual.
To solve the problem, the Glass-Steagall Act, 38 pages, repealed in 1999, should be reinstated. This legislation, separating investment banking from commercial banking, served the United States well for 66 years.
The too-big-to-fail banks, even bitter now, ought to be broken up for the public good. Finally, commercial banks should not be permitted to trade in derivatives.
I have lived in Lexington many years, commuting in from far out Tates Creek Road and have noticed a few things over the years. This is my first letter and I wonder if:
■ People turning onto Tates Creek off East Hickman realize how dangerous it is to pull out in front of commuters heading northbound.
Almost every day I watch cars and especially horse trailers pull out in front of me as I come down a hill.
Please, people, wait until nobody is coming before coming out. A bad wreck near East Hickman Church is going to happen unless crazy people quit pulling out without looking.
■ Men realize that toupees look foolish. To the older men trying to hide a bald head with a toupee, just take it off and keep your hair short, it looks better. And to the older men in the city with gray sideburns and jet-black hair, it looks odd. Just let your hair go gray. Most all women I have talked to find that your natural hair color is much more attractive.
■ Lexington city government understands its anti-pollution TV campaign will not work. The true nicotine addicts, the ones responsible for cigarette butts on our streets, consider our streets and intersections their personal ashtrays.
Many of these idiots smoke in front of their children and certainly don't care if our streams are being polluted. Other communities have found tickets from police are the only way to make cigarette smokers understand that throwing butts out their car window has consequences.
President Barack Obama has taken a courageous stand by endorsing gay marriage. Gay marriage seems like a radical idea because it is against religion, history, tradition and may lead to new legal problems.
The biggest problem with gay marriages is the issue of them taking care of children. Gay women taking care of girls is like a belief in the ancient Amazon tribe. Gay men taking care of boys is like ancient Spartan training and raises the fear of abuse.
If it were possible to interview a beatnik from the 1950s the cool cat might say, "shacking up is the better way, regardless of whether you are straight or gay. Get a new plan! Free love, man!"
To believe in gay marriage is like finding the forbidden tree from the garden of Eden. American politics lies somewhere between the Twilight Zone and Star Trek. Are you really sure you want to go down the bumpy gay road?