India will win
So the country is really happy about our new health care plan! No, not this country, of course, the jury's still out on that verdict and likely will be for a while. But India is expecting a surge in outsourcing as the health care industry tries to cut costs.
Too bad we can't send that business to Afghanistan or Somalia or some other troublesome destination. Capitalism is the great pacifier. It tends to make money and comfort your prime objectives. Instead of sending troops, we could send jobs! And armies of Middle Management Automatons!
As long as we're going to lose jobs to another country, it should at least be a move that compensates us for the loss in some way, like saving us money and lives. The drop in defense spending and taxes could offset the job losses. Our first move, obviously, would be a "preventive strike" prerequisite bill that would send any Defense Department lobbyists on a three-year backpacking tour of the worst of these countries.
— Steve Suhre
Too much vitriol
I am deeply concerned over the hate speech that is still happening around the health care reform bill. The aggressive bigotry, racism and homophobia displayed outside the White House had almost no reaction from Republican leaders. In fact, news footage shows Republican leaders encouraging these actions from a balcony. Democratic leaders were called the "n" word, "faggot" and were spat upon.
Then, when Republican leaders were questioned, they distanced themselves from these folks by calling them the fringe element and defended their right to protest. These same leaders have incited people over the past year with vitriolic rhetoric, fear tactics and false information.
Everyone has a right to protest, but protesting is one thing and hate speech is another. This type of threatening hate speech incites violence and endangers lives. Republican leaders have a major responsibility to send their party and its fringe element a message before someone gets killed.
— Sharlene White
Santa Fe, N.M.
Phil Kenny ("Clueless masses," Letters, March 25) displays the typical arrogance of a liberal, namely that everyone who agrees with him is smart and informed, and everyone he disagrees with is ignorant and stupid.
But if a writer is busy pointing out others' ignorance, perhaps it's our duty to point out his own, namely, his mention of young people putting their priorities on a product that, at the time of writing, didn't yet exist for the consumer: the iPad. How ignorant of Phil not to know that.
Granted, it's a minor point, but glass houses and all that, y'know.
— Tom Neven
I'm responding to Audrey Brodt's letter ("Stay with Bennet," March 18) wondering why voters would want to switch horses in the middle of the stream and vote for Andrew Romanoff when Sen. Michael Bennet is "doing extremely well."
For starters, we didn't elect Bennet. He was appointed by Gov. Bill Ritter, much to the amazement and disappointment of Democrats and independents who knew there were others who would better represent Colorado, one of them being Romanoff.
The fundamental principle here is that no one is entitled to these offices; that's why we have primaries and elections. Just because Bennet was selected to take Ken Salazar's place doesn't mean that he's the best person to represent Colorado for the next six years. Our country fought long and hard for straight-up elections and right now, in today's political atmosphere, the contest of ideas is very important. Would Bennet have taken such a proactive stance in areas we support, in an independent-minded manner, if Romanoff were not in the campaign? Or would he have played politics and fundraising closer to the vest?
I want my senator beholden to we the people, not to the corporate interests that have kept the Democrats from enacting meaningful change. The majority of Bennet's campaign funds are coming from outside the state. Corporate interest groups that bankroll a candidate expect to get something in return. I cannot believe that candidate will represent rank-and-file Democrats or independents as reliably as Romanoff, a champion of progressive causes who is being funded by the people.
Nothing is lost with Romanoff. What we risk with Bennet is likely losing the entire seat to Republicans because he has not served Colorado as Romanoff has, and the polls across Colorado register that fact.
— Gail Marcus
Regarding Attorney General John Suthers targeting the health care reform bill: Yes, Suthers is a Republican. Yes, this is another attempt by a Republican politician to derail the American health care bill. Yes, Suthers is a member of the Republican party of NO. Suthers will do anything possible to stop health care for needy Americans.
Yes, we are all required to buy insurance for the cars we drive. Yes, we are all required to buy insurance for the homes we own. Why in the world shouldn't we buy insurance for the most precious part of our existence, our health and the health of our loved ones?
Suthers, and all Republicans, are on the wrong side of history again: NO on Social Security. NO on workers compensation. NO on civil rights. NO on Medicare and Medicaid. NO on banking regulations. NO on health care for Americans.
Heath care for Americans is not socialism. Health care for all Americans is intelligent civilization.
— Leon Rodriguez
Regarding the employee of the Sheriff's Office posing nude ("Star treatment," cover story, March 11), I really don't care. One of these days I might even go look at them myself. They're really no big deal. However, on the issue of jumping pay levels, I am reminded of Paul Wolfowitz, who used to run the World Bank. That is, until he was found responsible for a similar situation.
The lavish pay raise he arranged for his girlfriend cost him his job. The Pentagon-No. 2-turned-banker, Wolfowitz was forced to resign in 2007 after he was found guilty of breaking the institution's rules. Wolfowitz had helped his girlfriend, Shaha Riza, win a promotion and a massive pay hike when she moved from the World Bank to the U.S. State Department. Riza, a World Bank staffer, changed jobs to avoid the conflict of interest when Wolfowitz was appointed to the bank's helm in 2005. Her salary also moved, the $60,000-a-year tax-free pay raise making her better-paid than Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.
The scandal plunged the World Bank into the worst crisis in its history — it had never before dismissed a president. Wolfowitz stated that he had acted ethically and in good faith.
See any similarities?
— Lou Morlando
Don't let up
Hoorah, hoorah. Regarding the stories about Sheriff Terry Maketa, the Independent (Pam Zubeck) tells it like it is. No drawbacks or B.S. to her readers.
As usual, we can depend on an in-depth story and good analysis of facts from the Indy. I'd love to get an 85 percent pay raise in three years and be paid $95,208 annually, and I'm certain most others would also. Pucker up ...
Maketa is a typical government employee who believes he does not have to answer to anyone and can decide pretty much which of his friends he wants to promote and why! Unfortunately, this type of action goes on in the federal as well as state and city government.
Here's a good example: I wrote a letter to state Sen. Dave Schultheis in October 2009 asking some questions about a site-assessment tax on my food at King Soopers on Hartsel Drive. I am still waiting for a reply. Even after an inquiry call to him in January, when he assured me I would be receiving a reply, it never happened, verbal or written.
Jerald Day should be in jail, not working at one, and Maketa should be his cellmate. Tiffany Huntz did a really stupid prank and spent 2-3 hours of paid time planning and plotting how to perform the prank on another employee. There is something wrong with this picture. She should have been dismissed for that.
Keep up the great reporting and informative, fact-filled stories in your publication. We love it! Colorado Springs folks need to hear the truth.
— Rose M. Rospierski
'Israel is eager'
There is little or no doubt that Rachel Corrie was a nice, compassionate and a good person. But to suggest, for one moment, that she is in the same league with Anne Frank, is ludicrous!
Grace Yenne ("Corries' cause," Letters, March 18) states that like Anne Frank, a symbol of Jewish suffering under the Nazis, "Rachel Corrie has become a symbol of suffering for the Palestinians under the brutal, 43-year-old Israeli occupation."
Yenne fails to realize that if the Palestinian authorities (which must include Hamas, PLO and all those groups that want Israel destroyed) formally accepted Israel's right to exist as an independent and sovereign nation, there would not be the "brutal occupation" that she speaks of. While Hitler planned to destroy the Jewish people, Israeli occupation of "Arab land" is the result of Arabs' refusal to accept Israel as viable state.
In contrast to Hitler, who was planning to eliminate the whole Jewish people, the Israelis would like to shore up the "oppressed" Palestinians, and to help them develop a state of their own. Israel is on record as supporting a Palestinian state. Israel is eager to have Palestine as a peaceful neighbor, providing, of course, that such a desire is reciprocal.
— Dan Goor
Lori Krista's letter ("Peace for all sides," March 25) claims that "Israel wants nothing but peace for itself and its neighbors."
Our experiences in Israel and Palestine, and those of others, have been that the 1967 invasion, occupation and control of the remaining 22 percent of the Palestinian United Nations British Mandate effectively removed freedoms and many other international rights guaranteed under the Nuremberg Charter, Geneva Conventions, Israeli Declaration of Independence of 1948 and hundreds of U.N. resolutions.
Krista states: "Jews who live in predominately Arab neighborhoods have recently come under criticism." Israeli colonization of East Jerusalem and the West Bank is not a recent event. Her acknowledgement simply affirms victimization of an indigenous people by a dominant military power.
Israel's control of both West and East Jerusalem has been condemned by the community of nations. Israel, unlike Iran or all other Middle East nations, possesses nuclear weapons and has the fourth-strongest military in the world. Israel refuses to admit its possession of weapons of mass destruction and submit itself to the same international regulations that govern other nuclear powers.
The policy of Israel has been to preserve the status quo while feigning willingness to seek a peaceful solution. A significant international movement is now considering sanctions, boycotts, economic divestment, international criminal court prosecutions and U.N. third-party intervention to bring peace and security to Israel and Palestine.
Such has failed in the past 43 years primarily due to an aggressive nation refusing to withdraw from territory it illegally occupies in violation of international laws in place since Nazi nations committed similar acts in Europe in the 1940s.
— Bill and Genie Durland
Divide and be conquered
Israel is the most important nation in the world! Jerusalem is where God Almighty in the form of a man, Jesus Christ, died and rose again. Iran nor any other nation will wipe Israel off the earth. Israel and Jerusalem belong to the Jewish people and none other.
But through all that the Jewish people have come up against, against all odds, the Jewish people are still willing to share and have peace. Something that most nations would not put up with. But no one has the right to say that Israel or Jerusalem is anyone's but the Jewish Israel people's ownership.
Whenever any nation tries to force Israel to divide the land, that nation faces a disaster. Who would like to be next?
— Karen Rose
Walking on air
It's hard to figure out why, in the face of smaller government and less spending, which is causing the city to slide into partial ruin, some city notables are so cheery, optimistic and light in the loafers.
For examples, the redoubtable City Councilperson Sean Paige and Gazette editorialist Wayne Laugesen seem as happy-go-lucky and upbeat as they can be about the Springs' future. Both are longtime boosters for less spending and smaller and smaller government. Which is what we got.
Maybe they somehow see a bright side to things. Water turned off in city parks? Natural Xeriscaping, for free! Dog droppings like minefields in parks? Free fertilizer! Closed restrooms? Good discipline for kids and adults to go before leaving home. And parks will resemble the vacant lots kids used to play in before big government messed up this great nation.
Less police and fire protection? More self-reliant, rugged individuals with more guns and hoses, of course. Keep big government out of your life and keep your money in your pocket.
You don't like City Council? Then push for a powerful "boss" mayor system, a dream come true for developers who already control city government but will have more centralized power, a mayor more easily controlled. Bring on the billion-dollar water pipeline and more subdivisions.
Don't fret over less bus service. People need more exercise.
And if fired and unemployed workers have to sell their blood to help put food on the table, a double benefit! Sick patients have a bigger blood supply, and food on the table for the kids!
If you try hard, you too can look on the bright side as Paige and Laugesen do. So whistle while you work — if you can find a job.
— Larimore Nicholl