Arrogance abounds on these pagesThe editorial elite has...

the Forum

November 02, 1990

Arrogance abounds on these pages

The editorial elite has spoken, and it is my hope that the voters will use independent judgment in their decisions next week. It's unfortunate that most of us are complacent, cynical and/or uninformed about the issues and rely upon such things as newspapers for direction.

For all practical purposes, The Baltimore Sun is the only act in town and a respected institution to many Marylanders. But let's not lose sight of the fact that only a very few ordinary people earn a living writing for a newspaper. They have no special powers nor unique insights into issues that affect us all each and every day.

It's time we not march lock-step to the voting booths with an Evening Sun in hand to cast our vote. The newspaper's managerial staff, whose primary duty it is to make profits for Times Mirror, has anointed itself "keepers of the public good" as a corollary function only.

You are entitled to your opinions, but arrogance abounds on these pages, and it's time we all become better informed and make rational decisions independent of the "fourth estate," which serves its own masters first and foremost.

Joseph L. Bishop

Monkton

Those 'bums'

You can say what you wish about "throwing the bums out."

But from the facts that have been presented, the "bums" are those (principally Republicans) and their leaders and those Democrats who refuse to place the burden of balancing the budget on those who obscenely enriched themselves during the Reagan-Bush administration and who are now being shielded by the former vice president, his cabinet and callous counselors.

The "bums" are those who demand or demanded a reduction in the capital gains tax for the wealthiest members in our society who, if they paid their fair (tax) share would assist in reducing the budget by at least $30 billion a year.

The "bums" are those who demand that Medicare recipients, many of whom are poor and ill, pay a disproportionate share toward budget balancing, even as heartless "representatives of the people" breathe new life into the hawkers of $600 toilet seats and $400 electric bulbs.

The "bums" who are preparing to extend to the wealthiest members in our society a free or freer ride on the broken backs of our exploited citizens (irrespective of a budget deficit resolution) should be reduced to "panhandling" on Nov. 6 by an electorate that knows a "bum" when it sees one.

eon Peace Ried

Baltimore

I am a life-long Republican and chairman of Republicans for Sophocleus.

I am not a highly-paid political lobbyist. I am a retired senior citizen, struggling like so many others to make ends meet on a company pension and Social Security.

I am not a political expert. I know nothing about running a $H political campaign. The little I know about political action committees I have learned through recent experience.

I really have only two things going for me: my concern for fiscal responsibility and my enthusiasm for Ted Sophocleus. And those two things are definitely linked.

I know there are many Republicans who agree and will also vote for Ted.

Bob Outman

Linthicum

It was mildly surprising to see Roger Hayden, Republican candidate for county executive in Baltimore County, come out of the woodwork to oppose the use of Hart-Miller dike as a disposal site for chromium-contaminated dredge spoils from Allied Chemical Company. Voters should question Mr. Hayden's FTC motives for waiting until an election year to get on the environmental "bandwagon."

While Mr. Hayden was quick to point out that chromium poses a health threat, he elected not to tell the public about his own involvement with chromium waste disposal practices during the time he served in management at Eastern Stainless Steel in 1983 and 1984.

According to state records, during that time the company's operations were "an environmental nightmare." Hexavalent chromium dust was "buried" behind the facility without a permit. This practice resulted in numerous problems with chromium leaching from the facility into off-site areas and streams entering Back River. The company also discharged hexavalent chromium into its wastewater treatment system.

The state ordered the plant to close the landfill and clean up the hexavalent chromium, but not before an emergency community evacuation plan was in place.

Mr. Hayden boasts that "his business background as vice president of operations at Eastern Stainless Steel has prepared him to save money by cutting costs and implementing efficient procedures." At whose expense?

The environment is not an abstract entity; it is the air we breathe, the water we drink, the land from which we reap our food.

Do we need an administrator who would abandon, delay or trim environmental restoration programs that have taken far too long to come to fruition?

Pat Williams

Baltimore

It is apparent that the county administration led by Dennis Rasmussen is using scare tactics to dissuade voters from approving Question T ` the proposal to place a 2 percent limit on property tax increases.

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