Take the Tom; Hold the Catherine

Catherine O'Sullivan's piece on senior-care facilities was pure dreck (Jan. 22). Her attempt at drollery was lame.

Tom Danehy's George W. Bush column was way more intelligent and insightful.

J.C. Livingston

Take the Tom; Hold the Former President

We loved Tom Danehy's "column" on, oh, what's his name?

Hopefully, out of sight will be completely out of mind. Brilliant column!

Carolyn Webb and Herb Boskin

Che Was Not Necessarily All That Great--and Neither Is the U.S. Government

In response to Paul Gattone's letter supporting Che Guevara ("In Defense of Che, TUSD's Raza Studies," Jan. 22): Ask any honest person in Latin America about the atrocities committed by both sides. They may not have reached the scale of the former Soviet Union or China, but were ruthless and cruel anyway.

A maxim in the former Soviet Union was: They pretend to pay me, and I pretend to work. It is a fact that communism makes everyone equally poor except the elite. It is sad that in America, we have monopolistic capitalism, which is not the competitive capitalism proposed by the founders and the Constitution.

The Communist Manifesto represents a misguided philosophy which teaches citizens to give up their rights for the sake of the "common good," but it always ends in a police state. This is called preventive justice. Control is the key concept of the Manifesto:

First plank: Abolition of private property (fail to pay taxes--IRS/state revenue).

Second plank: Heavy progressive income tax (federal and state income taxes, Medicare, Social Security taxes).

Third plank: Abolition of all rights of inheritance (inheritance taxes).

Fourth plank: Confiscation of property of all emigrants and rebels.

Fifth plank: A central bank (our Federal Reserve system, a private monopoly).

Sixth plank: Government control of communication and transportation (Department of Transportation, Federal Communications Commission).

Seventh plank: Government ownership of factories and agriculture (Department of Agriculture, choking regulations).

Eighth plank: Government control of labor (Department of Labor).

Ninth plank: Corporate farms, regional planning (multinational agribusiness, breaking down counties, states, etc.).

Tenth plank: Government control of education (Department of Education).

Is it any wonder why this crisis is upon us?

David Fosca

Another Volley in the Racism/Cultural Grouping Debate

Apparently, Bryan Smith thinks generalizations should be treated as equally as humans ("And Now, a Word From the Letter-Writer Who Started All This," Mailbag, Jan. 29), regardless of whether those generalizations are disparaging or innocuous and, more importantly, whether they are supported or contradicted by empiricism. Such a leveling makes Eva Zorrilla Tessler's views comparable to Hitler's, but reality is not that simple. For reality's sake, let's first put aside a straw man in Smith's letter: We can speak of whites, Asians or any other racial or ethnic group as a whole because of culture, history and/or present-day experiences that are common to their group. I'm sure social scientists and pollsters would take exception to his notion that it's "just wrong" to think Group A might view things differently than Group B. Polls conducted before the 2003 invasion of Iraq showed that black and Latino people tended to be less supportive of the war than white people. Is it racist of me to state this?

Smith should take a look at statistics on housing, employment, education and criminal justice (the latter an Orwellian term to those who know its racial biases). They should make it apparent that we're not all sharing the same experience of life in the United States. White people enjoy more privileges here, so why not balance things by rewarding those who bring the voices of the marginalized to the arts?

Matt Peters

There's Good and Bad in All Cultures!

Just a final word on my part in response to Bryan Smith: The fact that all cultures suffer from the same denigrations of humanity does not free them from facing up to their own dark histories.

People of every culture have many things in common, including genetics, location and a general point of view. The fact is, on this continent, the world knows which point of view has conquered and cared, immolated and innovated, awed and annihilated. Like all cultures, there's a duality.

Acceptance of all of our faults as well as triumphs is the gateway to cultural freedom and racial tranquility.

David Bayardo


Due to incorrect information from a public-relations firm, some Valentine's Day prices in last week's Noshing Around were incorrect. At the JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort and Spa, all restaurants' four-course dinners will be priced at $59. We apologize for the confusion.
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