Speak Out 9/30/03

Tuesday, September 30, 2003

Human kindness

I JUST wanted to thank a guy working at the Osage Centre on Saturday. A friend and I were riding on the bike trail when it start raining. We stopped at the Osage Centre to call for a ride home, but we didn't have any money for the pay phone. The employee gave us money to use the phone. It's nice to know that there are still kind people out there.

Doesn't click

DAVID LIMBAUGH never ceases to amaze me. He actually believes that political conservativism, an ideology based entirely in self-interest and materialism, is somehow compatible with Christianity.

Western values

THIS IS the epitome of the tail wagging the dog. Student enrollment should not dictate SEMO curricular offerings. SEMO should become a world-class liberal arts institution with exclusive emphasis on the humanitites of the Western tradition. All other programs should be considered superfluous and deep-sixed. If SEMO sinks as a result, it will do so defending the traditional values of Western civilization against the barbarian hordes.

Appreciates Chris

I USED to wait all week for Sam Blackwell's column on Thursday. I love the sensitivity and vulnerability Sam brings to his writing style. However, he's been replaced as my favorite by another feature in Thursday's edition, Chris Pagano's "Faces & Places" page. Chris brings out the good things that make Southeast Missouri a great place to live. I wish we had more of her column every day rather than all the other garbage that seems to make the front-page headlines. But cheer up, Sam: I read you before I hit the obituaries!

Corporate welfare

GOING AFTER the Weed and Seed program is easy pickings for the Southeast Missourian. But because it would alientate the large constituency of conservatives who read the Southeast Missourian, taking on agribusiness and other undeserved corporate welfare is considered unctuous.

Cut from top

WITH THE Bush recession and unimaginative management, the Dobbins administration finds that SEMO is in crisis. Rather than really cutting the waste in the top-heavy management of the university, Dr. Dobbins is cutting faculty and closing majors. Gotta protect those administrators, since they are doing such a great job!

Bus funds

WHY CAN'T the city help pay for a bus system from the Transportation Trust Fund?

Check there

TO THE person who called about the condition of McClure and asked where the county commissioner was: One of them lives on the main street in McClure.

Cut athletics

SO SEMO will announce what degree programs and tenured faculty will be cut on Nov. 14? What is more important to Dr. Dobbins: educating students who pay for their education or paying for athletes to compete in Division I? Clearly he has put spending money on athletics far ahead of what 99 percent of students go to college for -- an education. Even if SEMO could compete at the Division I level, doing so means losing money the university clearly can't afford to lose.

Get us out

PERHAPS PRESIDENT Bush did make it clear to the U.N. that we'll go it alone in Iraq if we have to. I mean, who am I to challenge the wonks at The Wall Street Journal? Still, it's just that I see a not-so-subtle shift in U.S. policy that amounts to kowtowing to and hat-in-hand begging of the U.N. to get us out of this mess.

And it rhymes

HURRAH TO the Southeast Missourian front-page headline writer who wrote, "Poverty rises; good growth surprises." Your implicit confirmation that, under the Bush administration, the rich are getting rich and the poor are getting poorer was an act of unparalleled courage. Anyway, I'd like to wish you the best of luck in your new job.

Don't blame press

THE GOOD news in Iraq? With $79 billion of our tax dollars already going there the president wants $87 billion more and hopes that other countries will pony up an additional $55 billion. That much money spent in the United States would give every state a budget surplus, fully fund homeland security and be able to raise every citizen above the poverty level. The problem isn't the press; the problem is the quagmire we have been dragged into.

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