Eller Gets Flacks in Return for CashTo the Editor,
According to Thomas Sanders ("Karl Eller Rules!" Mailbag, Feb. 12), Karl Eller "gets nothing back" for "his generous support of the entrepreneurial program bearing his name" at the university. Well, he at least gets PR from university flacks like Sanders. That "entrepreneurial program" could be justly named the Eller School of Bankruptcy after Eller's famous mismanagement of Circle K.
See Laurence H. Kallen's book, Corporate Welfare: The Megabankrupties of the '80s and '90s. Kallen writes, "megacorporations learned they could dominate and control the bankruptcy process" to "pick the pockets of suppliers, elude responsibilities ... and bust unions--all at very little risk to the jobs of top executives."
The university loves money, no matter how dirty it is, and will defend all "generous" donations from smugglers, corporate thieves, etc.
I'd Rather Be Independent Than a Gore SupporterTo the Editor,
Just a little reply to Tom Danehy's comment in "Voter Guide" (Jan. 29). He wrote: "Purgatory ... is populated by independent voters ... who never could make up their damn minds."
I'm an independent voter, because I've made up my damn mind. Let me guess: Danehy's one of those crybabies who blame Ralph Nader for Al Gore's loss. I voted for Nader, and the truth is, without him, I would've picked Bush. Because on the other hand, you have a candidate whose wife was head of one of the most evil censorship groups, the Parents' Music Resource Center.
Lieberman a "nice guy"? Try a social fascist. Check out his record against free speech.
Mr. Danehy, independents like me have made up our minds. We're sick of the Demipublicans and Republicrats. There ain't much difference between horse shit and pig shit. Give us a real choice. How about socially liberal and economically conservative? Think Jesse Ventura or any number of mavericks out there who aren't constricted and anchored to the two parties. Give us real choice.
My mind's been made up all along. I'll vote for a damn monkey if he's got a shot and winning can shake up this two-party system. Independent, yes ... liberal Democrat, no and never.
Libertarians Are Runnin' for OfficeTo the Editor,
Conservatarian Emil Franzi attacks me and Rich McKnight ("Libertarians Just Don't Get It," Mailbag, Feb. 19) because, ultimately, he does not understand the issues. Libertarians do.
Rich and I painted our views with a broad brush in this paper. The reason is simple: The Weekly gave us 1,000 words to make our point, not one million.
We did not mean to single out the county attorney and sheriff for un-election. We're not exactly fans of George Bush, John McCain or other politicians. We chose our focus for one reason: We took out nomination papers to run against Barbara LaWall and Clarence Dupnik in 2004.
We are certainly not trying to hide our libertarian views. We are proud of these ideas. That is why we're campaigning with the slogan FREEDOM NOT FASCISM.
Emil Franzi might not vote for us because he does not cherish freedom like Rich and I do. That is his prerogative.
Seniors in Parks Aren't Looking for SexTo the Editor,
I thoroughly agree with your statement on police priorities ("Boom and Bust," The Skinny, Feb. 12). The total waste of resources to card everyone at El Charro is one example. My neighborhood has tried to get the police to come to the large beer parties to at least stop the noise and possibly arrest some underage drunks, but they were too busy. They could have taken dozens off the street after drinking.
Now get this: Another priority is to remove single-appearing men from the neglected westside parks. They claim that they are getting complaints--sure, like WMDs. Retired men like myself have been meeting in the parking lot for years to talk and enjoy the desert. Now we are approached by uniformed officers, and we must produce our driver's licenses and get interrogated as to why we are there, why we're we talking to someone, etc., and we are told not to come back. They said they will card us every time we return.
We have been called names, asked if we were there for certain sexual acts, and of course, everyone is assumed to be homosexual. These are humiliations that I must endure if I am to maintain my walking schedule at Greasewood Park. My senior citizen friends have filed complaints with the police department.
I will write to every council member and strongly suggest that Chief Richard Miranda does not get one more cent until they develop priorities that fight crimes against law-abiding citizens.
--Stanley A. Carpenter
Cars' Cleanliness Goes Beyond Gas MileageTo the Editor,
An interesting fact: While the nostalgia for the hippie Beetle is admirable, young people today would be doing far less damage to the environment by driving one of today's new SUVs than an older-model car with poor pollution controls ("What Are They Good For," Opinion, Jan. 22). The Beetle got two to three times better gas mileage, but new motors with modern pollution controls burn about 97 percent cleaner than before. That's about 30 times cleaner per gallon of gas burned. That means roughly 10 or 15 times cleaner per mile driven.
It's a good thing everyone on the road today isn't driving an old Beetle. Of course, if we all drove modern small cars, we could get the additional gas mileage factor as well. Isn't technology wonderful?
SUVs: Size Does MatterTo the Editor,
How could Renée Downing (and everyone else on the roads) not understand what SUVs are good for? Perhaps it seems so clear to me, because I was not part of that Birkenstock, granola, save-the-whale, commune era of yours.
I came at the tail end of that period, emerging as a product of the '70s. It was "me" who now mattered--enough to selfishly lay claim to the whole "me" generation. Thoughtfulness and integrity was boring and passé! If cool couldn't be stated by what you drove or by some designer label, then your status was quickly ranked as unworthy
I've been trying to avoid being blunt about it, but the clear and simple truth about the SUV is that it's still about size! I can't tell you how many times I have laughed hysterically at the enormous sperm utility vehicles pulsating their bass over the driver's heads, beneath their bumpers.
I see you! I see your axles, your tire tread and four-wheel drive. I hear your conversations and feel your vibrations before I've even left the house! So you don't need to keep pulling it out and waving it in front of me, OK? IT'S BIG! I GET IT! IT'S HUGE, IN FACT!
Thanks for letting me have some fun with this issue.
It's All About Oil, BabyTo the Editor,
The sound of jets overhead may resemble many things, but freedom is not among them ("Disturbing the Peace," Currents, Jan. 29 and "I Like the Noise of Blaring Jets," Mailbag, Feb. 12). An analysis of sources from the federal government and oil industry publications reveals some curious insights.
Given a static rate of world consumption measured in 2001, the current known reserves of oil will last just less than 36 years. The additional volume of new reserves found each year has been in steady decline since the late 1960s. Our current rate of discovery adds only one barrel of oil for every four burned. The United States, which represents less than 5 percent of the world's population, is responsible for 25 percent of its daily oil consumption. Natural gas is similar, and only outlasts oil by about a dozen years.
As the armed forces restructure from an organization designed to fight a war and then come home, to one that is prepared to rotate its entire force through constant deployment, the true nature of our involvement in the Middle East becomes apparent: Every abundance we take for granted--food, medicine and shelter, for instance--is totally dependent upon an unceasing flow of cheap hydrocarbons. No other source of energy is as efficient at producing the lowly calorie. No other source of energy is staged to replace oil to continue the relative level of energy dependence we have placed ourselves in.
Call it what you want, but while there is an ounce of hydrocarbon left to hurtle steel through air, the sound emanating in its wake is that of addiction, ignorance, hubris, and a million other things other than freedom.