Ky. lawmakers aiding business over citizens
I am dismayed and saddened to read that several bills proposed to our legislators are going nowhere because of business interests.
No protection for the elderly because of opposition from the nursing home industry.
No protection for babies and young children who live in homes where their parents are cooking meth because of opposition from the drug companies.
I urge all citizens of the commonwealth to note closely how their representatives vote in this legislative session. Are they voting for all of us or are they voting for business interests?
Remember, the power that we have in a democracy is to vote these guys out of office. Notice, remember, vote.
Let's spoil everything
While Brandon Smith is trying to legislate poisoning Kentucky's waterways with coal tailings, he needs to legislate in favor of the "straight pipes" that dump so much raw sewage into Kentucky's streams.
This is something that will benefit the common folk.
Think of all the "brown" trout we'll have. Just be careful what you pull off your hook.
And, of course, let's re-write America the Beautiful so the line "Flattened mountain majesties" can bring tears to our eyes.
It's so Kentucky.
Poor state of union
Our Constitution requires the president to provide information on the state of the union to Congress, and to recommend such measures as "he shall judge necessary and expedient."
Congress received no specific measures from President Barack Obama to address the 50.2 million impoverished Americans or any of the other well-known problems, ranging from debt and meaningless wars to the tyrannical lobby industry.
Moreover, a recommendation was needed to prevent a repetition of the legislative incompetence and self-serving conduct responsible for the poor state of the union.
Another obvious omission was a recommendation to prohibit current and future politicians from sticking unwanted noses into the internal affairs of other sovereign nations.It would have been a great help if a recommendation had been included to reinstate the efficacy of the adage, "Charity begins at home."
America would be better served if Congress and Obama would confine their activities to their constitutional purview and let the profit motive produce the next "Sputnik moment."
The era of blind-eyed politicians and their corporate sponsors ended on Nov. 2.
The old, familiar-faced incumbents say they got that message, but their subsequent rhetoric and that bland State of the Union pep rally suggest: "What message?"
By 2012, incumbents who really got the message will be readily recognizable.
Their words and deeds will have reflected unselfish courage, common sense and honesty, or, like Superman, "truth, justice and the American way."
Todd ruled by sports
Lee T. Todd Jr.'s salary and contract gift to Athletics Director Mitch Barnhart is a more honest indication of Todd's reign as University of Kentucky president.
What an image for an educational institution, with UK faculty and staff salaries seeing no gain. UK now impresses by raising sports hierarchy salaries, not by improving Kentucky's educational and intellectual achievements.
Why not collect these raises with tin cups to give these gods such bonuses? I would suggest fans would be smarter than that.
Todd's legacy will be of a president padding sports gods' back pockets. Not a much different reign than of the previous president, only with a little better public relations.
Athletics is mostly entertainment, thus should not be the dominant theme of a university. Todd's real Top 20 accomplishment, No. 1, has been to consistently dumb down the fans with an occasional win falsely providing dreams of next season.
Even the basketball program has made Wildcat Lodge nothing more than an extended-stay motel with our one-and-done player goals.
This type of leadership should make these UK administrators embarrassed to go out in public. Someone should make them aware of the economic times we are in. Current conditions demand better decision-making.
If the board of trustees can't control this presidential expenditure, cut Todd's departure benefits. Would Barnhart share with Todd?
Factors in gas prices
There are several things going on with the gasoline price increases, but none of them is directly related to any supply-and-demand problems. It is all about greed of the local suppliers.
We have been paying 15 to 20 cents per gallon more than surrounding states for months now. It is further complicated by the drivers in this area who will not cut back on their driving.
It is also being driven by the Obama administration's desire to have prices reach $5 a gallon.
U.S. oil reserves are frozen in place by environmentalists. Get rid of the Environmental Protection Agency and gas problems will go away.
Donald R. Fugette
U.S. must help Israel
As the Middle East is convulsed in turmoil, the only country on whose loyalty the United States can truly count is Israel's.
That tiny country, which shares our Western values and has established the only democracy in the Middle East that is consistent with our vision of what democratic government actually means, is vilified and surrounded by enemy countries that are like a baying pack of hostile wolves.
If these wolves sense encouragement from the U.S. president, they will feel all the freer to strike and try to devour their prey, Israel.
It is time for Barack Obama to stop playing diplomatic cat and mouse with the brave citizens of that beleaguered little country. He has put quite enough "light between them and us."
He does, after all, represent the people of the United States. And poll after poll has shown that we, the people of the United States, support Israel.
We do not want him to damage the alliance between the United States and Israel that has existed since its founding 60 years ago.
At least Obama, with support of both houses of Congress, did instruct our ambassador at the United Nations to veto the condemnation of Israel that is before the Security Council.
Jerusalem is not a settlement — it is the capital of Israel.