Speak Out 6/17/10

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Military policy

SOMEONE said the only ones who are against the "don't ask, don't tell" policy were the Republicans in Congress. This overlooks a major group that doesn't want it repealed: the military itself.

Broadway needs help

I hadn't been down Broadway for quite a long time. Today I found it to be nothing but scary. At one time, that was a wonderful place to walk from one end to the other. Anymore I'm afraid who might pop out of some of those stores. And all I could think is "Bring the casino, please." Our nice little town needs a cleanup. A casino would help our downtown area and Broadway.

Remember Dad

FATHER'S Day is fast approaching, and I'd like to take this opportunity to remind everyone not to take their fathers for granted. I lost my father nine years ago, and at Christmastime last year I lost the closest thing to a father I had. Take time to be with your dad and remind him how much you love him, because you never know how much time you have left.

Blame the president

CONSERVATIVE Republicans around here are so out of touch with the rest of this country it makes me sick. The right-wing Southeast Missourian has an online poll asking if you think it's time for the government to take over the oil spill. I thought you were under the impression that the government cannot do anything better than the private sector. It shows that you want some way to blame this oil spill on the current president.

Party views

IT is worth reflecting on where political parties stand on the issues. By nominating Sharron Angle as their senatorial candidate, the Republican Party has identified itself with the following extreme views: Opposed to fluoride in the public water supplies, supporting legislation that would require doctors to inform women seeking abortions about a debunked theory linking abortions to an increased risk of breast cancer, that the disastrous oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico suggests that we should deregulate Big Oil, that it is wrong for both parents to hold jobs simultaneously and that Social Security, the Department of Education, the Department of Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency should be abolished.

Far-back thinking

THE tea party movement wants to take the country back. It's necessary to understand how far back they want to take it. Kentucky's Republican tea party Senate candidate Rand Paul opposes the 1964 Civil Rights Act and would repeal it. Nevada's Republican tea party Senate candidate Sharron Angle is itching to dismantle Social Security. And California's Republican tea party candidate Carly Fiorina dismisses climate change concerns as fretting about "the weather." If you want to live in the 21st century, where we evaluate the evidence and then make rational decisions, the tea party Republicans are not for you.

Proud of Robert

WITHOUT prompting, Soap Box Derby champion Robert Blessing presented his prized All-American Championship Soap Box Derby helmet as a gift to Super Kids racer Greg Swinney, after letting Greg wear it down the track during the Super Kids Classic Division race this past Saturday. A finer young person will be hard to find. We're all so very proud of Robert.

Fighting meth

IN response to a charge that Jason Crowell and the Missouri Legislature virtually ignore the meth problem: The answer is provided by Nick Reding in his New York Times best-seller, "Methland." Reding asserts (accurately I think) that state legislators lack the courage to adopt the Oregon solution and allow all products containing pseudoephedrine to be legally purchased only with a doctor's prescription. Oregon legislators had the courage to stand up to the pharmaceutical and retail-store lobbies. As a result, the bottom dropped out of the number of meth labs and meth related arrests. One can only hope and pray that Missouri lawmakers will summon the courage to take a similarly significant step and help us make real inroads in the losing battle against this scourge.

We'll all be poor

THE comment saying the "standard of living" in the United States isn't improved from decades ago is confusing the definition of "standard of living" with "quality of life." The first is an economic term to evaluate the average person's ability to buy material items, which looks at issues of income as well as the price of a basket of goods. For example, does anyone dispute that the average person has more access to televisions in their home than decades ago? It is imperatively true that the "standard of living" is better in the United States than it was decades ago. However, whether the "quality of life" is better is more debatable. Just because the average person now has a TV doesn't mean that the quality of life is better. The fact is that conservatives, according to the poll printed in the Missourian, are more in tune with objective economics. Liberals, as the comment confirms, are obsessed with issues of "income equality" and "social justice" at the expense of basic economics. Result: If liberals have their way, we'll eventually all be at the same income level: poor.

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