Tales of Third-Party Voting, Music Downloading

To the Editor,

Regarding Jimmy Goeller's letter blaming Tom Volgy's mayoral loss on Kim Swanson ("Swanson Caused Volgy's Loss," Mailbag Nov. 27), I say BULLSHIT!

First of all, Volgy's loss is not the fault of Swanson. Much like Gore fans blaming Nader, this is utter bullshit. Who's to say the Swanson voters would've voted for Volgy? Perhaps some of them would've voted for Walkup or a write-in candidate. Perhaps they wouldn't have voted at all.

As someone who voted for Nader, I get tired of Goreheads blaming me for Gore's loss. My vote was never Gore's to count on and take for granted. The same goes for the mayoral election. Personally, I'm glad to have more than two candidates on a ballot, someone other than a Republican and a Republican-lite ... er, a Democrat.

Also, in regards to Tom Danehy's column "Music for the Long Haul" (Nov. 27), I see Danehy has changed his mind about downloading music. In a previous column, he equated downloading music with stealing. As I replied at the time, there are completely legitimate, legal downloads to be found. Some of us use downloaded music to preview material we buy, especially those of us whose taste runs a bit wider than what the local Clear Channel outlet offers. (Thankfully, here in Tucson, we have KXCI.)

So Danehy uses Napster now, huh? I guess he feels better paying for it. Well, paying for a download doesn't necessarily mean the artist is being compensated, Tom.

OK, I feel better now.

--Mark Shull

Tea Time for Smokers, Too

To the Editor,

Referring to the article published about the tea studies ("Tea Time for Soldiers?" Nov. 20), I would like to clarify that the Department of Defense is the funding agency. However, the participants in the study are smokers and former smokers who are 40-80 years old and experience some breathing difficulties with activities--not the soldiers. The overall goal of this study is to establish an intervention for subjects at particularly high risk for lung cancer.

The study is currently ongoing. For more information about the study, interested persons can contact the study recruiter Mary Lurie (phone 321-7444, ext. 12) directly for more information.

--Iman Hakim, University of Arizona

Who Cares What Seniors Think?

To the Editor,

I read with increasing annoyance your interviews with Green Valley residents concerning the recent expansion of the Medicare welfare system to cover prescription drugs ("Mixed Diagnosis," Dec. 4). What the elderly think is irrelevant. The important thing is what the children and grandchildren of the Green Valley residents think of the program. After all, they are going to pick up the vast majority of the tab. They are going to get screwed into the ground paying for this unearned welfare benefit.

Oh sure, the geezers are going to have to pay $35 a month. And a few are going to have to shell out a few hundred bucks a year before 100 percent of all drug costs are covered, with no maximum! So what? The real travesty is that this welfare program is going to have to be scaled back as the children of the Green Valley residents get into retirement. The economy simply cannot afford such generous welfare benefits.

Frankly, the geezers in Green Valley (and everywhere else) ought to be on their knees thanking their children and grandchildren from the depths of their being for bestowing this unearned welfare benefit upon them.

--Rick Cunnington

No Apples for PCC Teachers, Either

To the Editor,

Thank you for running Stephanie Vie's article about the working conditions of UA graduate assistants ("No Apples for the Teachers," Dec. 4). I am part of a similar system as an adjunct at Pima Community College, but with considerably fewer benefits.

Adjuncts who teach English courses for PCC receive about a third less money than adjuncts and graduate assistants who teach the same classes at the UA. We also share the problem of health care benefits. PCC does not offer any benefits to adjuncts, regardless of the course hours taught.

Vie wrote of taking the gamble and hoping you don't get sick. This year, PCC started deducting our pay for class days missed, although we are allowed to make up the days. I recently made the decision to teach two classes even though I had a fever of 102 and a severe cough. It was either show up or not get paid. At the end of the semester, when was I going to make up the class time?

I work with a very supportive, sympathetic faculty, and I enjoy my teaching at PCC, but these conditions are difficult. There is a rumor that the new chancellor wants to improve things for the adjuncts; I hope this is true.

--Margaret Gillio

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