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Thinkers vs. doers

Brian Vickers ("Liberty threatened," Letters, Nov. 6) likens the political parties to mobs. After seeing the TV ads in the last days before the election, all people who continue to examine motives and ask questions might feel compelled to agree. But of course there would be those who would cry "elitist" if these thinking people spoke up.

Aye, there's the rub. The "thinkers" are discouraged by the "doers." No allowance.

Haven't they been taught this way? Hasn't there been a movement to "dumb down" America's schools and take us back to the embrace of the religions of superstition? Hasn't this same movement been in power for centuries and often changed the course of history?

Haven't we had enough?

Tom MacDonald

Florence

Litter bugged

To Albertsons, King Soopers, Safeway and the Gazette: Please stop paying somebody to throw your litter onto my driveway! Every Thursday, without fail, some poor schlub gets paid by your organizations to throw unsolicited litter onto my driveway. Neatly rolled advertisements, and tucked into plastic bags. They dutifully throw your garbage onto my property.

On how many levels is this wrong?

1. We haven't killed enough trees yet that you think it's OK to throw more paper onto people's property unsolicited?

2. Are you that stupid to think it's OK to use plastic bags?

3. Do you really think this is a good message to send to our children in this time of ecological strife?

4. If I throw my old magazines onto my neighbor's driveway, it's called littering. What's the difference, and why aren't you being cited for littering?

5. You're making so much money that you can just throw it away? How about lowering your prices more don't worry, we'll find out without having to pick up your crap from my property.

I understand some people use these things, but covering the entire neighborhood in garbage is wrong. I've sent letters to all the advertisers. I would encourage others to do the same.

It's time to start pulling our heads out of our proverbial asses and see that these wasteful practices are not acceptable!

Robert Grote

Security

The 'A' word

On the morning of Wednesday, Nov. 5, I was packing up my books after class at UCCS, and was completely caught off-guard by what I heard. Two students were chatting about the presidential election when one said, "Well, hopefully he'll get assassinated before he becomes president." I was shocked, appalled and offended. These two women were laughing about their statement. I did not know how to react and did not say anything at the time. My reaction was delayed, but here it is:

I may not (or may) agree with the political views of the democratic majority all of the time, but that is irrelevant; I need not wish death upon those who want this country to succeed. I have exercised, and often do exercise, my constitutional right to express my disagreement. I in fact consider it my patriotic duty, as did many forefathers of this great country, to express that dissent.

But we must play nice in the sandbox. The election is over; let us welcome our new elected officials to office. If you think you could do a better job, run for office rather than wishing death upon them. If you do not agree with the majority, you still must abide by that majority's decision.

UCCS is a hate-free zone. It is hurtful and wrong to speak that way of another person, and could be considered treasonous to speak that way of an elected official, be it a city councilor or the president-elect. Disagreeing with policy is a completely different animal from musing about assassination. If you don't agree with someone, it's OK to have a civil discussion, but to wish harm even death upon anybody, simply for different views about how to confront America's current challenges, is immoral and unethical.

Matthew J. Brown

Colorado Springs

Cartoon commentary

I enjoy your newspaper and its editorial stance. Please keep up the good work!

However, must you publish the amateurish scratchings of derf? I don't know if "derf" is a name or a diagnosis, but the guy not only can't draw, he (she?) can't think of anything to draw about, either. Whoever draws the guy with the pipe is pretty poor, too.

Tom Tomorrow is pretty good. But replace derf!

Ted Wilkin

Pueblo

Embedded enviros

The seventh edition of a regional sustainability conference will happen Nov. 20-21 at the Crowne Plaza. For six years it was the Fort Carson Regional Sustainability Conference, accurately representing Fort Carson's dominance in setting the agenda. "Sustain the Mission, Secure the Future" was the subtitle.

Now it's the Southern Colorado Sustainable Communities Conference, but how much has really changed? The environmental movement's slogan has been "Think Globally, Act Locally." The problem is, many, if not most, of our local environmental activists don't do it that way. "Think and Act Locally and Ignore the Big Picture" sums up their stance.

How else does one explain their willingness to take at face value the green claims made by Fort Carson? The Army has done some good things to reduce its resource consumption in the cantonment area, but that's not the whole story.

Consider the huge, fuel-guzzling combat vehicles that are the mainstay of Army training and combat. The M1 tank's fuel efficiency is measured in gallons per mile, not miles per gallon. Bradleys, Humvees, MRAPs and combat helicopters are all big guzzlers. They must be taken into account when determining Fort Carson's carbon footprint. War itself is very destructive of the environment and leaves behind a toxic mess, as an Oct. 3 Army Times story details.

Fort Carson's campaign earned a Heroes of Sustainability award from the Alliance for Sustainable Colorado. As mentioned, the Army is revered in the local environmental community, which pays huge dividends when expansion of Fort Carson and Pion Canyon come up for consideration.

Embedded status is debilitating. Fort Carson has great resources, making the embedding temptation attractive. But we deserve better from our local and state environmental movement. We need a strong environmental critique of Fort Carson's expansion, and we need it now.

Bill Sulzman

Colorado Springs

Libertarian menace

Jeff Wright writes ("Brace yourself," Letters, Nov. 6) that too many are clueless as to how an economy operates, and that the economic mess will get worse. Correct.

Include the libertarian worship of the twin "free market" and "free trade" gods that got us into this mess. True believers are blind to their failures. (Google "Invisible Hand Drops Ball & Economics 101.")

Henry Hazlitt, in his Economics in One Lesson resource, blames economic woes on inflation, from expanding the money supply to support deficit spending and to reduce unemployment. His causes of unemployment: unions, minimum wage, unemployment payments and welfare.

But the real causes of unemployment and low wages? Federal Reserve policies and "free trade" offshoring of jobs.

The "Fed," partially comprised of private corporate banks that impose "command and control" policies regulating the U.S. economy, assures inflation isn't caused by a "wage price spiral" from "too low" unemployment driving up wages.

Official U.S. unemployment (U-3) is 6.5 percent; U-6, a wider measure that counts many others, is 11.8 percent. More than one in 10 can't get a job. The "added value" of that extra person is zero. Game theory informs us the added value of "any one person" is zero, driving wages at the bottom to between zero and subsistence level. Unions and minimum wages only mitigate this effect.

"Free trade" offshoring has us competing with those who work for pennies a day, undermining wages so they won't support an American mortgage. The Fed increases the money supply so the U.S. can keep running a $700 billion trade deficit and growing federal debt.

Wright's, Greenspan's and the Gazette's Libertarian menace is more dangerous than the Communist menace ever was. That's why the worst is yet to come.

Bob Powell

Colorado Springs

Intelligent voters

Hoorah! Ah, justice finally (defeat of 1A)! Thank you, voters of El Paso County.

Sheriff Terry Maketa, perhaps you should find another job and save citizens money and grief. (After all, the budget has to be cut somewhere in your department.)

And Barbara Drake, though I like you personally, perhaps you should teach your fellow Department of Human Services employees that they are paid public servants and they should learn how to perform their job duties correctly.

Thank you, voting citizens. You're smarter than the government thinks.

Conrad J. Czajkowski

Colorado Springs

Dances and spirits

The defeat of 1A shows courage and a common sense toward the future of our great community. It's time to roll up our sleeves and make the tough decisions.

The drumbeat of war has enriched our community with the massive expansion of our industrial military complex. The war dance of our congressional and executive leadership has also unleashed an evil spirit: the Department of Homeland "Security." The mentality of "use it or lose it" has bloated emergency services to unsustainable levels in every city and county. Budget cuts need to be balanced and fair.

Karl Knapstein

Colorado Springs

Good for America

Democracy was celebrated on Nov. 4, after being ignored, mocked, manipulated, abused, defied and finally hacked by Bush and Cheney for eight years. These high crimes must be prosecuted before Bush pardons his cronies and himself in a final act of treason as he sails out of town.

Justice demands to be served. I urge everyone who is once again hopeful and excited about America to Google "impeach Bush" and add your voice to the cause a fitting way to put a period on the shameful actions of these war criminals.

Miriam Schuster

Colorado Springs

The Keyes option

Most of us will live to regret Barack Hussein Obama as our next puppet-in-chief. If this nation was/is truly bent on "electing" a black president, Alan Keyes would have been far better. I grieve for this country and the hell it is about to go through. We now have the clearest evidence that ignorance is not bliss. I only hope and pray more people wake up to what is really going on in this land of foolishness.

Gregory-Alan Johnson

Colorado Springs

Correction

The "Quote of the Week" in the Nov. 13 issue began with a mistake in transcription. City Councilor Tom Gallagher was addressing Vice Mayor Larry Small, not Mayor Lionel Rivera. The actual quote: "Mr. Vice Mayor, what you know about traffic engineering, you could fit in a thimble." The Independent regrets the error.

  • Political parties, driveway trash, cartoon analysis embedded enviros and many others.

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