Letters to the editor: Aug. 16 - East Valley Tribune: Opinion

Letters to the editor: Aug. 16

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Posted: Saturday, August 16, 2008 9:07 pm | Updated: 11:59 pm, Fri Oct 7, 2011.

We encourage readers to submit letters to the editor on issues of interest to East Valley residents. Submissions should be no longer than 300 words, factually accurate and original thoughts of the writer. Please be brief and include name, address, city and phone number for verification. Letters and call-in comments may be edited for clarity and length.

Submit your letter to the editor

We encourage readers to submit letters to the editor on issues of interest to East Valley residents. Submissions should be no longer than 300 words, factually accurate and original thoughts of the writer. Please be brief and include name, address, city and phone number for verification. Letters and call-in comments may be edited for clarity and length.

Submit your letter to the editor

PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION

McCain misguided on conflict

John McCain seems unable to explain just what American interests are at stake which would justify American interference in a civil war in South Ossetia, of all places. In the absence of legitimate American interests, this simply looks like unwise meddling for some sort of specious political advantage.

We have had seven years of an inept president who stumbled from one foreign policy mistake to another. We don’t need another one.

NEIL THEX

MESA

Obama’s speculation

Sen. Barack Obama wants to release 70 billion gallons of the federal oil reserve. Sounds good. If that forces the price of oil down, then the federal government can buy the same amount back at a deep discounted price. Probably the only time that government actions were profitable. But suppose that the price of oil does not go down. Then what? Wait a minute, isn’t that speculating? We can’t have speculation. That’s what we blame the rise in oil prices on in the first place. I’m confused.

AL FISCHER

MESA

Does McCain back troops?

In mid-2007, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., noted that Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., missed 10 of the past 14 votes on Iraq. Here is a summary of several votes with respect to Iraq and funding for veterans or for troops, including equipment and armor. I have also included other snippets related to the time period when the vote occurred.

September 2007: McCain voted against the Webb amendment, which called for adequate troop rest between deployments. At the time, nearly 65 percent of people polled in a CNN poll indicted that “things are going either moderately badly or very badly in Iraq.”

July 2007: McCain voted against a plan to decrease troop levels in Iraq. At the time, an ABC poll found that 63 percent thought the invasion was not worth it, and a CBS News poll found that 72 percent of respondents wanted troops out within 2 years.

March 2007: McCain was too busy to vote on a bill that would require the start of a decrease in troop levels within 120 days with a goal of withdrawing nearly all combat troops within one year. Around this time, an NBC News poll found that 55 percent of respondents indicated that the United States’ goal of achieving victory in Iraq is not possible. This number has not moved significantly since then.

February 2007: As such a strong supporter of the escalation, McCain didn’t even bother to show up and vote against a resolution condemning it. However, at the time, a CNN poll found that only 16 percent of respondents wanted to send more troops to Iraq (that number has since declined to around 10 percent), while 60 percent said that some or all should be withdrawn. This number has since gone up to around 70 percent.

BILL DUNLAP

MESA

LOST ID

Blame parents, not feds

In regard to the Tribune’s opinion on the feds’ reaction to Ken Tabar’s immigration issue (“Feds keep citizen from supporting himself,” Aug. 10), it seems to me that here lies a case of blaming the wrong party. The article did not say if Tabar’s adoptive parents are still living or not.

But, being responsible adults and American citizens, they should have known better. They are the ones to blame, not the federal government. When one loses their ID, the first reasonable and responsible thing to do is to get a replacement. You stated right in the editorial that the family “made a mistake by not keeping track.”

I feel for Tabar and the situation he is in, but his parents are the ones who need to shoulder the blame. Ignorance is not an excuse. At his age, he should know the laws and should not have waited so long to take care of the problem. Now that time is of the essence, he is bumbling around and trying to put the blame on others. I truly hope all turns out well for him, but his family needs to realize that under the circumstances, they are the ones at fault, not the government.

CAROL DREW

MESA

MARICOPA COMMUNITY COLLEGES

Integrity needed

Thank you for uncovering the corruption in our community college system. We need people of integrity in positions of leadership, therefore, replacing Chancellor Rufus Glasper needs to be the priority. He is at the top, and knowingly allowed the dishonesty to continue, therefore more and more took advantage of the situation. Please do us taxpayers a favor and replace Glasper with a person of integrity.

LOUISE WOLFE

TEMPE

LEGISLATIVE ELECTIONS

Decades-old filing irrelevant

I recently received one of the most despicable and unconscionable attacks on a public figure that I have ever witnessed. The organization “Mesa Deserves Better” aptly describes our need to ignore this group’s mailings.

This campaign mailer characterizes Russell Pearce as a “violent attacker of women.” Highlighted for readers is the date of Feb. 3. It took a magnifying glass to determine that the divorce papers were filed in 1980.

Common sense tells us that divorce filings frequently contain exaggerations. Even if true, the passage of time, Pearce’s subsequent honorable service as a police officer, head of the Motor Vehicle Division, and state legislator render these allegations completely outdated and irrelevant.

The politics of personal destruction, the distortions and exaggerations of the truth do a disservice to the political process, and show a lack of respect for both the voter and the promulgator’s position on the issues.

If this group cannot beat Russell on the strength of its arguments against positions he’s taken, without vilifying and defaming his character, then its positions are undeserving of the voters’ consideration.

CECIL ASH

MESA

Schmuck good for all of Arizona

It’s not every day that we, members of the Arizona veterans community, find ourselves with the opportunity to support a fellow veteran running for public office in our state. Lately those chances have been dwindling below what should be expected based on an estimated more than 600,000 veterans in Arizona and about 2.6 million registered voters. Yet, soon the voters of District 20 will have that opportunity.

Shortly after I became deputy director of Arizona’s Department of Veterans’ Services, I was introduced to a young man, a Gulf War veteran and fellow aviator by the name of Frank Schmuck. Frank was recovering from a mercury poisoning that almost took his life. What I witnessed in Schmuck after his recovery is something that will be tremendously positive for Arizona and the people of our district.

Schmuck brought together volunteers and organized and produced a series of concerts featuring U.S. military service academy choirs and civilian choirs here in Phoenix all to bring awareness of neurological disease, which had stricken his friend and fellow Gulf War veteran Mike Donnelly.

Schmuck’s efforts, along with others, helped convince legislators and the executive branch of the federal government to provide full disability benefits to any veteran from the Gulf War diagnosed with Lou Gehrig’s disease. This decision was monumental in comparison to the challenges Vietnam veterans faced with Agent Orange.

Beyond that, Schmuck has done many great things in our community. He is a fellow inductee to the Arizona Veterans Hall of Fame for all the good he has done for Arizona since his military service. We as veterans and Arizonans can be proud to have Frank Schmuck offer his time and talents in the true spirit of public service.

MAJ. FREDERICK E. FERGUSON, RETIRED

CHANDLER

Swann would avoid new taxes

Our state isn’t collecting enough revenue to fund all of the programs added in recent years. In addition to that, our citizens are hurting financially. Our state leaders need to find ways to reduce the burdens on taxpayers — that doesn’t mean finding new ways to squeeze money out of them. As a small businessman working to raise a family with kids in school, Andy Swann understands that the government shouldn’t be standing in the way of people’s ability to do business. I think Swann will be the responsible leader we need in this tough economy. He is running for the Arizona House in District 20, and I hope you will join me in voting for Andy Swann this September.

JOHN LANGMACK

TEMPE

McComish has proven his worth

Only one of the Republican primary candidates for the House in District 20 has the experience needed to help get us through these tough times. That candidate is John McComish.

Only McComish has a proven track record of getting things done for our district and our state. He has been called thoughtful, hardworking and competent. He is all these things and more. McComish was a corporate executive for 24 years and president of the Ahwatukee Foothills Chamber of Commerce for 10 years. As the majority whip in the state House, McComish has shepherded numerous pieces of legislation through the process and has shown himself to be a proven and effective leader.

Only John McComish has the extensive experience and proven track record needed in these tough times. John has shown himself to be a true friend to the people of our district. He deserves your vote.

KERRY G. WANGBERG

PHOENIX

PINAL COUNTY ELECTIONS

Transit is biggest issue in A.J.

I was surprised by the politicians of Pinal County all clamoring to get some of their ideas in the local papers about what they believe National Day of the Cowboy is all about. It seems Pinal County Supervisor Sandie Smith, D-District 2, had a view from her high horse. In one paper, she was quoted as saying “independent spirit” is the important ideal of the American cowboy; something she herself claims to aspire to as well. I agree the independent spirit of Americans is what made this country great, but what about collective action and sharing a common interest?

For 16 years, she has heard numerous cries for improved mass transit and has seen several costly studies on the subject indicating the need and benefits of even the most simple bus extensions into Apache Junction with little real effort to implement the idea in a useful way.

I often wonder as I see the daily reports of the home foreclosures, how many would have been avoided with the ability to negate $4 plus per gallon for gas.

I won’t even bring up the environment and health benefits of mass transit. I think the two leading parties have some answering to do. I have been attacked for being “a one-issue candidate” in Apache Junction and Pinal County; more or less, a transit gadfly. The way I see it, the leadership of Arizona has failed us. The people who could do something never learn from their own rhetoric or history.

Affordable movement, as the railroads proved in the past, along with the latest technology is the future for the west. As a candidate for the Board of Supervisors, I ask you to support the idea that collectively we can achieve more together then we ever did alone and ever will.

ELLIOTT E. FISHER

INDEPENDENT CANDIDATE, DISTRICT 2

APACHE JUNCTION

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