Paul says foreign aid should go to true allies or keep money home
The Herald-Leader recently chose to take me to task for not understanding some dubious facts.
Unfortunately, I and the 80 percent of Americans who agree with me on cutting off foreign aid have had ample time and evidence to understand the corruption, destruction and utter failure that has been our foreign aid program.
We are, right now, sending billions of taxpayer dollars to countries who are burning our flag, storming our embassies and killing our diplomats. We are sending billions to Pakistan, whose government has imprisoned and tortured the hero who helped us get Osama Bin Laden.
I believe we should cut foreign aid. But my legislation was actually not about that. It was about attaching minimum conditions to our aid — namely, that you be considered an ally of the United States in order to get your aid. This condition causes confusion only in the halls of Congress or in the editorial board rooms of major newspapers.
The American people clearly understand this very basic concept.
I offered to put this aid to good use — by doubling the size of the veterans jobs bill. I have previously offered to send the foreign-aid money to rebuild bridges and roads.
It seems no offer is enough to convince Washington to cut off the foreign welfare gravy train.
But I will continue this fight along with my fight to reform and shrink government and restore liberty.
Sen. Rand Paul
McConnell failed veterans
With all the hoopla over Mitt Romney's gaffes, news outlets largely ignored an important story involving our distinguished veterans.
Veterans face a higher unemployment rate than the general population. Yet, a bipartisan proposal to help our military heroes find new careers — the Veterans Job Corps bill — was killed on the floor of the Senate by Republicans led by our own Sen. Mitch McConnell.
The bill had enough votes to pass. But McConnell's partisans killed the measure based on a technicality.
Why? Because the initiative was originated by Barack Obama.
McConnell has made it clear that his No. 1 priority is to make Obama a one-term president. He is fulfilling this personal mission by creating more anguish for military veterans. These Americans have already endured more than their share of misery and deserve our respect.
Kentuckians elected McConnell to lead, not to obstruct. How do we send him this message?
Stacy V. Bearse
Encourage military to vote
Everybody would like to pick their boss. Members of the U.S. military, unfortunately, shy from this notion every four years.
According to the online Fox News report from Sept. 6, "Group warns of 'bleak' military voter participation despite Pentagon efforts," the voting turnout in this assembly is extremely low.
In the imperative state of Ohio, merely 3.3 percent of eligible voters in the military have requested a ballot for November's race to the White House.
This conflict of interest is also the military's strength: remaining apolitical. They must not publicly speak in disagreement against the civilian leadership. Gratefully, the right to vote is available to our service men and women.
This vote is their sole opportunity to privately voice a judgment with or against the current president. Given such a decision, perhaps most soldiers, Coast Guard members, airmen, sailors and Marines feel that they are wrong in voting. This reasoning should be avoided.
Members of the military are also citizens of our nation. As such, we should continue encouraging those men and women to acquire a ballot and vote this November.
Return timely comic strip
I'm very sorry for the medical situation that caused the creator of Cul De Sac to end the comic strip's run. But, the paper's additional termination of Daddy's Home leaves me sad and disappointed.
Daddy's Home is a very timely comic, with the interactions between father and young son, as well as the philosophical conversations with his next-door neighbor. I plead with you to bring it back.
If something has to go, I'd suggest Dilbert which has run its course and is no longer funny. Doonesbury is yet another comic that has never interested me.
Albert E. Hoffman
Alicia Wincze Hughes' article about equine corrective surgery ("Making the Cut," Sept. 9) was interesting and informative. But I was dismayed that nowhere in the lengthy story did anyone mention concern about whether such surgeries are morally defensible.
I know horse breeding and racing are businesses, but surely many breeders and owners love their horses and have reservations about causing them pain not to cure a disease or injury but merely to enhance their performance on the track.
In the past, the Herald-Leader has run excellent stories regarding how breeding, training and racing practices sometimes hurt horses; I hope the paper will address these issues when covering such topics in the future.
Sarah Jane Herbener
Ticket distribution is madness
The University of Kentucky needs to review its policy on distribution of tickets for Big Blue Madness. There are (as is always the case) scalping groups that eat up all the tickets online and then charge exhorbitant prices for a ticket that cost them nothing.
As of noon on Sept. 22, there were tickets on eBay for upwards of $750, for sale by several groups that have way more than the prescribed four-ticket limit.
I would suggest the UK ticket office get back into the business of selling tickets rather than using Ticketmaster. In the past UK and Rupp Arena sold tickets at the window exclusively. While this may not be the most convenient method, it does cut way down on scalping. Nothing will ever stop the scalping, but something needs to be done to protect the consumer and fans.
If nothing else, all Madness tickets should be distributed strictly in person or at "will call" on the day of the event.
Regular season tickets could easily be sold at the UK ticket office. Yes, the fans would be inconvenienced, but at least they would be given a fair opportunity to get tickets that would otherwise only be obtained by paying more than the legal rate a check-cashing place can charge in interest.
Cartoonist's messages dismay
I am disappointed in the paper's decision to publish John Barber's Sept. 16 cartoon to the editor, "Mittens goes to foreign policy school." While it certainly is Barber's First Amendment right to share his political opinions regarding the election, that right should not extend to mocking our military heroes who have made the ultimate sacrifice in defense of our freedom.
The desecration of the burial coffin and the flag in order to make a political point — showing Romney standing on it to get attention — evidences the lack of respect for our military heroes by the editorial staff and Barber. I would hope you would consider publishing an apology to those of us who served and especially to the families of those who have given the ultimate sacrifice and earned the right to the American flag.
Mark A. Wohlander
U.S. Army, 1971-79
I was shocked to read John Barber's Sept. 23 cartoon to the editor.
Just when we are striving to educate our population on the evils of bullying, this supposed artist comes forth with a cartoon with Tea Party political strategist Jesse Benton telling one of our elected officials that he will pound him into senselessness if he does not hand over his lunch money.
What kind of picture does this paint for our youth? I can only hope that Barber's sense of humor does not run along the lines of the majority of the American people.
'Mr. Magoo' refs
Well I, for one, cannot wait to see the new movie going behind the scenes of the National Football League's 2012 season. Look for it soon. It will titled, "Blind Side, Part 2." It will cost a lot of money to make, but will contain very little sustenance.
Bad ad strategy
I just want to go on public record in vowing that I will never do business with any company that advertises on or supports the half-overleaf (or whatever you call it) on the front page of any newspaper.
It's a nuisance and immediately hits the recycle bin at our house. Hard to say what advertising genius came up with this idea, but I'm sure it would never be approved by Mad Men's Don Draper.