Gazette's next shot

After more than a half-century, the Hoiles family's control of the Gazette has collapsed. This is both wonderful and sad.

It's tragic when any newspaper or other news outlet goes bankrupt. All kinds of ideas must be heard. Even the most absurdly eccentric ideas from the Gazette editorial pages, when not disgustingly inhumane (anti-union, anti-public schools, anti-welfare, anti-entitlements, and groveling at the feet of the rich), were at least entertaining as fantasy.

The Hoiles philosophy was Frank Capra in reverse: Bankers win; struggling workingmen get squashed. It was especially amusing that while the Hoiles Libertarian philosophy blasted anyone who would not or could not fend for himself, the Hoiles family luxuriated in wealth and did little or no work themselves.

They seemed to believe their mantra of "rugged individualism" as if it had any grounding in reality. But every human is born utterly helpless and dependent and cannot become self-sufficient for at least a dozen years, double that in complex societies. There never was a time of rugged individualism.

All the social philosophers — Hobbes, Locke, Hume, Mill, etc. — agreed the reason for existence of any social group is mutual protection, and increased ability to get food and wealth from cooperative arrangements, which an individual operating alone could not achieve. In Hobbes' stark words, any individual living alone would have a life that is "solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short." Even the mountain men of 1800s Colorado had to go to towns to get gunpowder, tools and medicine. John Wayne was an actor, not a historical accuracy.

So goodbye, Hoiles ideology, hello ... what? The Gazette for now remains in the hands of chief editorialist Wayne Laugesen, staunch Libertarian Christian religionist and tireless advocate of concealed guns. What would Jesus pack, a .38 revolver or a .45 automatic?

— Larimore Nicholl

Colorado Springs

Unfair, unbalanced

I just read Pam Zubeck's "Paper cuts" article (News, May 6) article. We had subscribed to the Gazette for a very long time, but the editorials got to the point where we could no longer support that newspaper. We felt like we were supporting (through our subscription) an agenda that we simply did not believe in. We canceled last year and now read the Independent and Denver Post exclusively.

As for the Gazette, they say that they want to provide a product that is "consistent with what the community needs." If that's their view, we made the right decision because they are a divisive publication that only fairly covers one side of this community's views. The Independent does a great job of covering community-related stuff and so we depend on you for that. It's a great little newspaper. If the Gazette changes the editorial board and makes it more balanced, we might reconsider subscribing again. Otherwise they will never see another dime from us.

— Ernie Storti

Colorado Springs

Who's wasteful?

Does anyone else find it ironic to receive a full-size, full-color, taxpayer-financed mailer (the third such in a month) from U.S. Rep. Doug Lamborn (R) talking about how he is an alleged champion for eliminating government waste? He wins awards for allegedly protecting taxpayers from government waste, and to celebrate the award he sends out glossy, colorful mailers at taxpayer expense.

This guy is our "champion"? It sounds more like he is a huge part of the government waste problem. We receive two of these mailings at our house every time this champion for waste fires up the government-funded color printing press, financed with money from China, despite our repeated pleas to his office to stop sending them to my house.

Congressman, if you are so concerned with runaway government spending, why don't your personally pitch in to stop this blatant waste? Can we get your pledge to do so? Probably not, since the waste you rail against is the only way to keep your face in front of Colorado Springs voters. You have no election opponent, so how about you knock it off?

— Brent Buzbee

Colorado Springs

Rove-ing for reality

Is there no end to the apologists for Bush, Cheney, Rove, Rice and now Palin? With respect to Eric C. Mason ("Defending Rove," Letters, May 6) how is it "creating an alternate reality" to recall highly questionable elections, three wars (remember that Rove, Cheney, Powell and others were involved with Pappy Bush in the first Gulf War), the near-destruction of the economy, utter disregard for the environment, hyper-secrecy regarding most executive branch dealings and decision-making, torture in defiance of international law, collusion with corporations (Halliburton comes to mind) ... the list could go on indefinitely.

The issue is not intelligence. (Although, despite Mr. Mason's objection, I think "dim-witted, confused-looking guy from Texas" pretty much hits the nail on the head!) After all, they were smart enough to steal two elections and create enough division and fear in the American psyche to pursue a ruthless, reckless program of international imperialism that has created enemies for us throughout the world.

Much of this brilliant strategy was pure Rove with a dash of Cheney; it was clear to anyone with eyes open (an important element of enlightenment) that W. was a manipulated puppet. These people are also clever enough to avoid being prosecuted for international war crimes and domestic deception and lies. It's very dangerous to confuse political savvy (winning elections) with moral sense or diplomatic ability (providing responsible leadership) or intelligence.

The real issue is our intelligence in allowing this mockery of our republic to take place as a result of electing arrogant, irresponsible, self-indulgent fools to represent us on the international stage. And we compound our ignorance by not only letting these villains slip into history with impunity, but actually defending actions that were indefensible. And yes, I would be interested in seeing that Bush/Rove reading list.

— Paul Dahlsten

Colorado Springs

Deepsea thoughts

Despite the horror story of the explosion of the BP Deepsea Horizon oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico, I find hope in the outcome. The hope is that this wakes us up to the possibly devastating consequences of our addiction to oil, and the resulting conclusion that we need other sources of energy to ensure the future health of the planet and vitality of our grandchildren.

Yes, these alternative options, i.e. wind, geothermal, solar and wave power, need developing, so let's do so. We have the equipment and the potential to both harness and employ this power; we just have to utilize it.

Imagine how much research we could have put into developing these alternatives with the money that is now being spent on cleaning up the BP rig accident. We need a clean energy revolution.

— Hannah Nichols

Colorado Springs

Farewell, downtown

Last Saturday I met a friend at Poor Richard's on North Tejon Street, and we were having such a good time that we forgot to feed the parking meters. My friend received an excessive $20 parking ticket. I was lucky enough to have a few minutes of time on my meter.

I think this will be the last time we meet downtown and risk such a ticket. I would like to support downtown businesses, but I refuse to give the City Council more money to waste. So I apologize to the owner of Poor Richard's, but I won't be coming back anytime soon unless the City Council stops nickel-and-diming us to death.

— Jim Gosse

Colorado Springs

Endless argument

The condescension, the smugness and most of all the disingenuousness of Michael McMahon ("Mandate mistake," Letters, April 29) are just too much to pass up.

He has the nerve to tell us that no one is being legally forced to support an insurance company by the recently passed "health care" legislation. My income tax, according to Mr. McMahon, will just be "adjusted accordingly." It makes just as much sense to say that there is no law against bank robbery. It's just that if you do (rob a bank), your freedom to move will be "adjusted" into a prison!

He's also dead wrong to say that no one is going to be subjected to a tax increase, or that it is all the same to look at it as a tax reduction for those who cooperate. It is not. No one — no one — is going to get a tax reduction. Instead, those who try not to participate are set to be hit with a huge, deliberately punitive surtax.

About a year ago, I pointed out to a friend that, once a country has an income tax scheme up and running, it becomes possible to enforce anything — no matter how ridiculous, unfair or unconstitutional. He didn't seem to believe me. There could be no better demonstration of this principle than the very real health insurance mandate the federal government is currently pursuing.

— Patrick L. Lilly

Colorado Springs

Sam I am?

Marketing. I am so confused. Years ago, actor Sam Elliott was the commercial voice for the American Beef Council. "Beef. It's what's for dinner," Sam said. With a voice like that, I started eating more beef.

Then, 20 pounds later on me, Sam became the "voice" for the bankrupt General Motors, selling the best Chevy truck ever, the Silverado. So my bigger butt and I purchased an awesome Silverado. Well, being American made, within 14 months this Chevy developed numerous electrical problems — the American way for all three U.S. car companies.

Last week, I heard GM was proud to announce paying back its debt to our government, five years early! Good for GM! Good for our country! Although my electrical challenges still exist, I love my "Made In the USA" truck.

But the very next day, I heard that voice again. It's Sam! Oh no, now Sam is the voice for the still-failing Chrysler Co. He's hawking Rams.

The newest best truck built in the USA ... marketing! So now I must take my fat butt, sell my electrically challenged Silverado and go buy a Ram? Obviously, what Sam says sells. Marketing ...

— Wendy Booth

Colorado Springs

Helping you

The chaos theorists have it down. Nothing is as simple as linearity. George Washington had it down. The two-party system only leads to bickering. That's not to say that on an individual level, a personal goal is wrong; nor in a monogamous relationship, a bipartisan system is wrong. Often, personal direction and progressive balance are a beautiful thing.

What I want to say is this: Next time you use the roads more than me, thank me for my cut in the deal; next time you go to the parks, museums or other city-maintained facilities, thank me. Next time you talk to someone on disability or Social Security and have a good time, thank me. Next time you go to the bank, thank me. I gave part of that to you.

Thank the uninsured idiot socialist who helped you buy Powers Boulevard and Academy Boulevard for the wonderful spring day at the park, or the fact that your neighbor's disabled kid might get a chance at life. Be glad the corridor of Powers and that of Academy aren't just dirt roads.

Oh yeah, and you'd better thank me when you have to call the cops, or have to get in touch with the Internal Revenue Service for tax form help. Might I say thank me for having that car dealership to go to?

— James Nall

Manitou Springs


Leave us alone

This is about telephonic solicitation. But it can't be written to that industry, because it's our own stupidity causing the problem.

Do not cooperate with any solicitor! Whether it's a survey, a campaign against MS, help for cops and firefighters, political causes, sales agents, whatever. Do not cooperate! The home is where we escape the daily hustle. It's where we relax and hope for calls from people we love. We're not at work taking incoming calls. We're home. Good chance we're napping, or on the poopie, or watching a movie, or making woopie (rhyme intended).

Those solicitors don't know and can't care because they're chasing power and money through our living room. How often have you been hoping for a certain call and stepped out of the shower to answer the phone only to discover it's somebody wanting money for a disease? All the dread afflictions mankind has ever suffered cannot compare to the accumulated negative effects of interruptions and disappointments felt by millions of people every day due to telephonic solicitation.

This abuse of our homes will not stop until we check our own stupidity. Every time, no matter what, just say no. And tell your aging parents to do the same.

— Jim Inman

Colorado Springs

Manifesto dilemma

The manifesto for governance change presented by the Citizens for Accountable Leadership on May 5 at Stargazers Theatre and Event Center did not accomplish the purported objective — a strong-mayor panacea for Colorado Springs inhabitants.

The theme "Understanding City Government in America," by Adrian S. Kwiatkowski, president of the Strong Mayor-Council Institute, was a thesis with merits, but many questions for citizens of Colorado Springs could not be answered because it lacked profound and explicit information.

Currently, among American cities ranked by population according to the last Census, Colorado Springs is one of many with over 100,000 that have the system of council-manager government. Therefore, the clamor for change becomes moot.

Yes, the citizens of Colorado Springs need to determine how viable their current council-manager system has been in order to seek a charter amendment change. We have a workable structure. During the historical epoch (1920-2010), the council-manager government has served our citizens well; therefore, we must ascertain our real 21st-century needs before embarking on a governance crusade.

As former director of the Urban League of the Pikes Peak Region, I feel this complex governmental dilemma requires a collaborative effort by all entities: economic, education, political and social, because this represents a major change.

Finally, Colorado Springs citizens must relentlessly pursue the most rational solutions for the city's problems. Every man and woman must seek a doctrine that improves the well-being for their constituencies.

— Charles H. Guy

Colorado Springs

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