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November 15, 2010
What the GOP Wave Means
I’ve always agreed somewhat with each party’s ideas but never fully with either [“GOP Wave Sweeps Capitol Hill,” November 5]. Perhaps now we will get some truly meaningful legislation out of Washington. This bitter feud between Democrats and Republicans should end. A more understanding tone should prevail. The radicals, on both sides, will be tempered by the middle-of-the-road predominance. That should enable more compromises.
FRED BEHR Whitesboro, N.Y.
One unfortunate byproduct of the Republican Revolution of 2010 is that if left to Congress, the president’s promise to end the bizarre and anachronistic “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy is likely to be broken. Republicans, and particularly those on the far right, have found that it plays well with their supporters to continue treating homosexuals as lepers. Their view is reinforced by a number of prominent members of the military who tell us that “troop morale” will be negatively impacted by the presence of those whose sexuality is not considered to be the norm. What a tragedy that our nation refuses to join the enlightened countries of the world in recognizing that homosexuality is not a factor that renders one incompatible with military service.
OREN SPIEGLER Upper St. Clair, Pa.
As a lifelong Republican political activist, I have been asked several times about my reaction to the recent apparent Republican election victory. I usually respond with an example from when I worked in the real estate business. We experienced many ups and downs and, naturally, we overinvested during the boom and consequently lost big during the bust. A common joke was that we used to pray: “Lord, if you give me just one more real estate cycle, I promise that I won’t screw it up this time.” Republicans have been given one more chance.
ROY MILLER Phoenix
To Deal or Not to Deal?
Jobs and taxes, taxes and jobs will be the focus of the lame-duck Congress [Editor’s Note, November 5]. Since the GOP is not yet in charge, they will have to agree to something or risk looking foolish right after the new session begins. Democrats should paint the president’s $250,000 limit as hard on trial lawyers, since they are supposedly a favored constituency.
STEVE SHERMAN Mountain View, Calif.
Lost Love for Obama
Obama doesn’t get it. Americans have spoken [“Assessing the Democrats’ Election Disaster,” November 5]. Obama will never accept that his agenda is not acceptable and he’s going to be a one-term president. Healthcare will be overturned, and we took away the checkbook. The arrogance of the Democrats with their backroom deals is over. These two years have been pure hell. As a Democrat, the lesson I learned is never again to give my vote to them. If you believe Obama and the Dems will change, forget it.
LEE HAUSER Sherman Oaks, Calif.
Obama has divided us, calling those who disagree with him enemies. He has squandered almost a trillion dollars on goodies for public employee unions, auto companies, and Wall Street, while failing to create the needed jobs. He passed an unintelligible healthcare bill by bribing senators and arm-twisting representatives, all the while misrepresenting the financial impact on the general public. Obama has lost all credibility—whatever he has to say is suspect despite the attempts of the mainstream (what stream is it, anyway?) media to cover up the lies and incompetence.
SUE MASIELLO Solebury, Pa.
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November 5, 2010
‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’
I served in the Army through Desert Shield / Desert Storm [“Injunction Ups Ante on Gays in Military,” October 15]. I don’t have an issue with gays at all; in fact, I have had quite a few gay friends over the years. [But] the units I’ve served in were all supply—and thus coed. So we had to have separate showers and bathrooms in the field and at home for males and females. That being said, how are you going to house and shower gay soldiers stationed with straight soldiers?
PAUL SKINNER Hanceville, Ala.
The Partisan Fight
Stop with the blame game. Every time Democrats talk about the economy, they state that they have saved us from a second Depression. They have no facts to back up that statement; it is pure conjecture. It is so disingenuous. They blame everything on George Bush, yet it was the Democrats who were in charge of passing legislation.
JEFFREY GREEN Eden Prairie, Minn.
Both the Democrats and Republicans deserve credit for the destruction of our great nation. They have worked hand-in-hand to achieve this. And both blame the other. Meanwhile, the public is losing their nation, their economy, and their way of life. It is time to rid ourselves of politics-as-usual and bring back integrity. But, realistically, what do you think the chances are of achieving this? We are doomed. We have met the enemy and he is us.
JAMES BOWER Redmond, Wash.
I find Republicans confusing. They just never seem happy [“Grudge Matches,” October 15]. Clinton left the presidency with the country’s budget in the black. Bush left the country deeply in debt and on the verge of another Great Depression, yet what do I hear? “They want fiscal moderates and a balanced budget.” So why are they voting Republican again?
PATTY PARKER Fairfax, Va.
The Tea Party movement is talking change in more-real terms than the last upstart who tried it—who is now watching his prospects fizzle. Budgetary responsibility is easy to cheer for when we’re seeing unpopular initiatives run up the debt. The government should have cinched the belt rather than thrown money at the problem. I just hope that voters are on board with the price that comes with the gutsy Tea Party recommendations.
TED CLAYTON Joyce, Wash.
I read a book in 1993 entitled Who Will Tell the People: The Betrayal of American Democracy, by William Greider. Why should anyone vote for either party when they created the problems the country now faces? Both parties are the problem, not the solution.
DAVID SOLO Georgetown, Texas
Jon Stewart and Liberal ‘Sanity’
It’s kind of interesting that comedian Jon Stewart’s “Rally to Restore Sanity” was considered a liberal, pro-Democrat rally [“Looking for the Stewart Bump,” October 29]. Sanity is considered a liberal position? I wonder why that is.
MARC PERKEL Gilroy, Calif.
Schlesinger and the GOP
Mr. Schlesinger’s smart aleck remarks [“If the Republicans Take Charge . . . ,” October 15] about anyone who doesn’t suit his liberal mindset will force me to not renew my U.S. News subscription.
STEPHEN CHAPMAN Englewood, Ohio
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November 2, 2010
Democrats and Illegal Amnesty
If leftist Democrats like Barbara Boxer and Nancy Pelosi again win control of Congress, they along with liberationist Obama will grant total amnesty to all illegal immigrants, most of whom are Latinos whom Democrats are politically beholden to [“Democrats Practicing Campaign Triage,” October 15]. Pelosi, Boxer, and the Democrat-controlled state legislature made California a “Sanctuary State” and radically changed California two ways: First, the torrent of illegal immigrants in the last three decades has catastrophically overtaxed government, causing devastating public deficits; and second, Latinos will in a couple of decades be the major race in California and Spanish its most spoken language. (President Obama is on record saying, “America’s children should speak Spanish.”) These leftist Democrats will do to the nation what they did to California. [See where Pelosi gets her campaign money.]
DAVEY TRUMAN Santa Cruz, Calif.
Obama’s Mideast Peace Game
Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu does not realize that the Middle East game has changed [“Negotiating Peace Should Be a Private Process,” October 15]. No American administration and no Arab negotiator has ever made settlements out to be the critical issue. Mutual recognition, the end of hostilities, the borders separating Israel and Palestine, and refugees were the problems to be solved. Barack Obama changed all that. He, like former President Jimmy Carter, sees the Middle East conflict from a distinctly Arab perspective. Obama lavishes praise on the Arabs and misses no opportunity to scold Israel. His philosophy seems to be that if only Israel were more cooperative and did whatever the Arabs wanted, the Arabs would reciprocate. So he has scant praise for Israel unilaterally setting a 10-month construction freeze, while the Palestinians name public places after terrorists. Now Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas threatens to quit peace talks unless the construction freeze is made permanent. The focus of the talks should be to set borders, allowing each side to build on its own territory. One must conclude that, even with a sympathetic American administration backing them, the Arabs are still not interested in allowing a Jewish state to exist.
LEN BENNETT Montreal
A GOP Takeover?
Of course Republicans are going to win the House and maybe even the Senate because America, the greatest country in the world, is racist to its core [Editor’s Note, October 15]. So the majority of white Americans, or the 70 percent majority of Americans (as Bill O’Reilly likes to say), would rather put control back into the hands of Republicans, who over the course of eight years left America in its worst economic shape since the Great Depression. These racist Americans are comfortable with this economic weakness [even] realizing that it makes this great nation extremely vulnerable to nuclear superpowers like Russia, China, and, unfortunately, even India and Pakistan. The power of racism is amazing. It can apparently cause one to be willing to place his own children in harm’s way just to feel more comfortable, or should I say superior?
ELTON McWILLIAMS Houston
[Can the president do anything to change the November outcome?] 1. Spend more time praising America than bashing it. 2. Honor your oath to uphold the Constitution. Stop trying to “revise” it into a progressive document. 3. Renounce the state religion of environmentalism. Green theology has destroyed industry, forced jobs out of the country, kept us dependent on our enemies for energy, increased prices for goods and services, and reduced recreational opportunities for millions. 4. Proclaim that unborn babies are endowed by the Creator with inalienable rights. Further, that these rights are not predicated upon the personal whimsy of irresponsible, selfish parents for the sake of their personal convenience. 5. Cast out party members who dishonor their oath of office—draining the swamp, as it were. 6. Reduce the size and scope of the federal government. Guarantee more autonomy to the states. 7. Support term limits. 8. Renounce pork-barrel politics. 9. Support vouchers, charter schools, and private education. 10. Reduce the size of the kingdom. There simply aren’t enough resources to man the outposts of the realm. And, sadly, it is also so with the Republicans.
RICHARD SCHAEFER Marina del Rey, Calif.