We will win, but then lose the gulf war
We would do well to read Rami Khouri's column (Global View, Jan. 24), as we will have many occasions in the future to recall his prophetic words.
In winning the war which we will against Iraq (or is it against Saddam, Mr. Bush?), we will have lost everything in the Middle East! Every opportunity which we may have had to establish the right of each Arab country to self-determination and self-fulfillment, unfettered by our own greedy interests, will have been squandered. We have more completely and ruthlessly zTC destabilized this region than Saddam could ever have hoped to do.
Left alone, the Arabs would have dealt with Saddam in an appropriately Arabic manner. But with our burning desire to represent, to the hilt, our own interests primarily and Israel's secondarily, without so much as a nod toward Arab concerns in their own homeland, we have created a poorly aligned and artificial tilt of power in the Middle East. We have shamefully failed to exhibit any honorable intent or moral responsibility toward the Arab peoples. Indeed, our standards for Israel's behavior are quite different from those we set for the Arabs.
Think of what our reaction to a Lebanese bombardment of Israel would have been. Dare to imagine our response to an Iraqi bombing of Israeli nuclear arms production facilities!
We are now draped in the moth-eaten cloak of imperialism (many, however, have mistaken it for patriotism) previously worn by both of the now-deceased empires of Turkey and Britain . . .
and it is a very uncomfortable fit!
Saddam Hussein did not start the war in the Middle East. George Bush did so that he could avoid important issues. Some of these issues are homelessness, the savings and loan crisis, the deficit and a downward economy, to name a few. I believe he cares nothing about the people of Kuwait or defending democratic ideals. He is putting the selfish interests of himself and his friends in the oil companies first and last.
The recent revelation that the federal budget deficit will be approaching $260 billion further demonstrates the fraudulence of the 1990 budget agreement.
Congress told taxpayers that it would increase taxes by $100 billion and cut spending in order to reduce the budget deficit. Instead, Congress increased taxes and spending by $100 billion apiece. Congress lied.
In short, there were no spending cuts, only tax increases. The $100 billion tax and spending increases show that taxes do not cut budget deficits, but instead merely increase spending. If there is to be any progress in cutting the deficit, it must be on the spending side. Spending on entitlements must be frozen, spending on the bureaucracy and marginal programs must be cut and spending on useless programs has to be eliminated.
Unfortunately, taxpayers in the 4th Congressional District have little hope for fiscal bravery in Rep. Tom McMillen. While his opponent in the November election, Bob Duckworth, tried to tell the truth about the budget, McMillen slouched to victory by claiming he was for fiscal responsibility while simultaneously supporting the tax-and-spend budget sham.
McMillen is the consummate politician, telling his constituents what they want to hear while doing the bidding of special interests and the liberal leadership of the House of Representatives. He got away with his game in 1990. But if the federal deficit continues to mushroom, he might not be so lucky in 1992.
As reported in The Evening Sun Jan. 15, Rev. John Wright of the NAACP states with regard to the coinciding of the U.S. deadline for Iraq to withdraw from Kuwait and Martin Luther King's birthday, "We should have been given this day clear..."
Leaders of the black community are constantly using race to demand the upper hand in social and economic issues.
Black leaders and the black community need to realize that society owes them an equal opportunity to succeed, not the guaranteed advantage.
All people are owed an equal chance. Government should stand ready to ensure this. But no people or persons have the right to expect a government-enforced advantage.
Turn the lights on
The editorial in The Evening Sun (Jan. 29) ridiculing as "trivial pursuit" the passage of a law requiring drivers to put on their headlights every time they put on their windshield wipers is downright irresponsible.
Several other states have found this legislation to be an important addition to other laws to ensure safe driving. In many conversations with colleagues and others over the years, everyone had experiences with vehicles appearing seemingly out of nowhere. Headlights, whether in rain, snow, early dawn or dusk do little to enhance the driver's vision, but for oncoming vehicles those two beacons of light are lifesavers. Remember, at times like this, headlights are for others to see, not to illuminate the roadway for the driver.
I hope you will reconsider and encourage this legislation be passed this session. Any attempt to prevent highway traffic deaths is certainly not "trivial pursuit."
Ben T. Opalski Sr.
And we wonder why white-collar crime continues to proliferate! I refer to your Jan. 23 "On the nation" column which reported that a judge had sentenced a lawyer who stole $150,000 in taxpayer money to three years' probation, a $5,000 fine and 300 hours of community service.
Had I committed this crime, I shudder to think what penalty I would have had to pay. The judge in the above case should be recalled and disbarred. Perhaps then the word would get out that judges are there to protect the innocent taxpayer/citizens, not their lawyer brethren/thieves.
By the way, how about the lawyer who recently stole $25 million of his clients' money and fled to Africa "to donate the money to charitable causes"? Ho, ho, ho!