Demonization of conservatives fosters division
The Herald-Leader's responsibility to civility has clearly gone missing.
I take issue with a letter writer of Nov. 10 and lodge a complaint with the newspaper for running it. In this letter, the writer labeled the "rabid right" as "fascism lite," described one half of the nation (conservatives) as ignorant from conformist dogma, making minorities into scapegoats, enjoying curtailing civil liberties and liking war. Hogwash.
I understand the letters section is intended for opinions and the Herald-Leader occasionally prints a steamy letter to keep things lively, but printing that letter was a gross error in editorial judgment in my opinion. While bordering on incoherence the letter remains divisive and incendiary.
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Through editorial letters like this one, Barack Obama's campaign continues with dribs and drabs of the outrageous lies that helped him eek out a second term. The left sees that with a complicit press it is OK to demonize truly decent, successful people like the Romneys because they wouldn't represent a collection of fringe groups, rather, all Americans.
The divide in America between metropolitan areas (blue) that claim the lion's share of minorities, liberal institutions and poverty, and the more suburban and rural areas (red) where most people just want to work and live a decent family life is not going away. No amount of demonizing hard-working family people is going to make them favor liberalism. Too many already know that liberalism doesn't do any real good for any subgroup except politicians at election time.
Benefit of H-1
I read, with amusement, the commentary by Ben Kaufmann ("An unneeded layer of restrictions on property owners," Nov. 12).
I too own a home in Chevy Chase that was affected by the historical designation.
There is a rental house next door to us. We maintain our property in the way of painting the trim (which the city made us do before any H-1 designation was made), keep the lawn mowed and nicely maintained, replacing our old gutters and windows, replacing our sidewalk and just generally taking care of our property.
The rental house next to me has never been taken care of. Yes, the city made the owners paint as well, but the shingles are falling off the roof and I get to look out my nice, kitchen garden window every day to the gutters falling off the house.
I was against H-1, but if it makes the owners of the rental property around me clean up their property, then I'm all for it.
Healthier food program
When it comes to the federal food stamp program, I'm for it, front and center.
However, when you go into the grocery and see prepared ribs in the deli with a big orange sticker stating it's food stamp-eligible, at the price of $12.99 for 1.5 pounds, that ain't right. No, sir. The taxpayers are getting shortchanged.
Only fresh fruits, vegetables, health food and staples should qualify for the program.
Other items that qualify for the program are: raw cookie dough (a mother bought some for her young teen son, who proceeded to eat it while waiting for the bus), sugary soda pop, personalized fresh baked cakes from the store bakery and prepared baked chicken wings, to name a few.
The federal program needs to readdress health and financial issues.
In the meantime, pass the Twinkies.
The Kochs' real quest
I read "The Kochs' quest to save America" last month in the Herald-Leader. The reporters selected the authors of The Betrayal of the American Dream as the "balance" for their article. Don Barlett and Jim Steele are not the most knowledgeable about the machinations of the Koch brothers. Greg Palast, an investigative reporter for the BBC, is. He is the expert. Had they read Billionaires and Ballot Bandits they might have added this:
Twenty years ago the Kochs weren't so rich. They only had about $2 billion. Yet, they found it worthwhile to cheat Osage Indians in Oklahoma when collecting oil from the small stripper well pumps which netted the families about $30 a week. The drivers were watched. They were documented always recording fewer barrels than they collected. Finally the FBI stepped in, taped and recorded the transactions.
Many asked why the truck drivers were being directed to shortchange the Osage. The Kochs already had plenty of money. Charles Koch was asked by someone wearing a wire. He laughed and said, "I want my fair share and that's all of it."
The Kochs have not changed.
Read Chapter 5 to learn why they needed Mitt Romney to be president. The Kochs need the Keystone XL pipeline. Aquifers be damned; bring on earthquake risks, polluted water and increased cancer.
Sara M. Porter