A Revolting Development

To the Editor,

Mailbag Regarding Jeff Smith's "The Coming War" (Tucson Weekly, June 26): I strongly agree with his view about a coming conflict between the rich and the poor in this country, but must add that this conflict has always existed in this country. What the rich white men in Congress have forgotten is that the only thing that has kept this conflict from boiling over into a true revolution has been the meager support people got in the way of government benefits.

In the 1930s people were in the streets by the millions and openly discussing class conflict and the need for radical change. The thing that saved the day for the ruling classes was the New Deal and its programs such as AFDC. In the 1960s Watts and many other inner city areas were in flames as people had reached their limits of tolerance with poverty and inequality. And again the day was saved by the Great Society and its increased government programs. These programs were completely inadequate, but were enough to keep the desperate majority satisfied.

The right-wing ideologues in Congress seemed to have chosen to ignore history in their zeal to finish off the vile Reagan Revolution. I work with poor people and cannot tell you how often clients have chosen not to speak out against their poverty and the injustice around them because they were afraid to lose their food stamps, AFDC, or housing assistance. Well, soon all the benefits will be gone and millions of people will be forced into a job market that will be unable to absorb them. These millions will have nothing to lose anymore and they will act. When they do they will shape a society that will look radically different from that envisioned by a Congress (Republican and Democrat) that only serves the rich.

--Paul Gattone

To the Editor,

Regarding Jeff Smith's "The Coming War" (Tucson Weekly, June 26): In spite of shrinking profits, the corporate CEO gives himself a bonus, blaming market conditions or worker productivity for the decline. The local crack dealer blames the oppressor from the gated community. The school teacher blames disinterested parents. Jeff Smith blames rich white guys.

At what point in this country's history did the attitude change form self-reliance, hard work, and an honest attempt to grab the brass ring? If you believe Jeff (doom and gloom) Smith, we're on the verge of class warfare, "...the only option for a guy on the short end of the stick is to yank the stick from his oppressor's grasp and whip him upside the head with it." I'm 48 years young and my credentials include school, work, military, work, loans, school, more work, loans, more work.

The good news is that after years of perseverance and sweat, I'm rich. My four-banger hums and guzzles 25 miles to the gallon, and I own a luxurious one bedroom co-op. I am one of those guys who, in Smith's words, "owns the nations economic engines." I do own a modest portfolio, built a buck at a time. Shame on those filthy capitalists for allowing me to invest in my future! Let's redistribute all the wealth and remove all investment incentive. We'll call it "The Unfunded Nature of Financing, Which Depends on Collecting Taxes Each Year From the Working Population to Pay Benefits to Retirees."

I'm pissed off, too, Jeff. I'm pissed that Third-World countries aren't more like us. Why such a scramble to reach our borders? Let's make it so that the whole country is at the short end of the stick. Fist City from sea to shining sea. I've done my share of the heavy lifting, and never once pointed a finger at the wealthy. Been too busy being my middle-class self, and taking advantage of the opportunities envisioned by Jefferson and Madison.

Your contentions that unemployment and blue-collar pay-raises impede on the Dow are not supported by the facts. Never let it be said that you let the facts get in the way.

--Tom Farrell

Give Me Incorporation

To the Editor,

As a resident in the community of Casas Adobes, I am starting to get involved in the incorporation movement. Tucson Mayor George Miller asked the current incorporated towns of Sahuarita, Marana, Oro Valley and South Tucson to join his effort through a lawsuit to halt the incorporation of Casas Adobes, Tortolita and Foothills.

May I remind the Mayor that we as citizens of this country, state and county have the right to determine our own future? Our forefathers spent over 12 years fighting an unwelcome King George to prevent him from determining their future.

Many of us do not wish to be carved up between Oro Valley, Marana or Tucson!

This incorporation is about self-determination. As residents of Casas Adobes we do have the right to determine our own future. Local businesses and residents can come together to enhance our community, attract more business, increase property values, and allow us to reinvest in our community.

This incorporation is about fair taxation with representation. Our elected council members will be elected from districts where they live and work at responsible taxation for the betterment of the whole community. We do not want our sales taxes supplementing town hall annexes and infrastructure for the new solar city.

This incorporation is about community. We will be able to develop parks, improve roads, keep town government small, develop a town center and determine our community needs free from outside influence.

This incorporation is about good, conservative, environmentally sensitive growth. We want to infill areas to make our town whole, while remaining sensitive to the needs of our beautiful desert. Marana's position is clear--clear the desert and build high-density housing. Oro Valley is conservative, unless you are a developer with master plans including golf courses watered with fresh water. Tucson says it wants infill development, but its officials are considering annexing Rocking K and giving concessions to the solar city developers.

This incorporation is about local government. We want to see council members elected representing their own districts and working for the whole community.

Who really runs Tucson? The council or the bureaucracy? We want a council who will genuinely listen and work with citizens to improve our town.

Am I talking Utopia? Sure, and why not? We have seen through the media the failures of petty politics, uninhibited growth, water disasters, recall elections and irresponsible annexations. This is our opportunity to do things differently. Put the authority into the hands of our residents and let us choose our own direction. Put your threat of a lawsuit into the garbage can and show respect to the residents of Casas Adobes.

--Jim Gerety

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