Bartlett right to stand by U.S. in U.N. debt disputeRecent...


September 28, 1997

Bartlett right to stand by U.S. in U.N. debt dispute

Recent newspaper articles, debates by politicians and reports by the General Accounting Office, a non-partisan government entity, regarding the monies the United Nations owes the United States versus the monies the United States owes the United Nations have been of great interest.

In an attempt to better understand the situation, I attempted to relate it to my role as family bookkeeper. In our household, we diligently pay our bills. The idea of our country's not paying debt is disturbing. Since there is a dispute regarding who owes whom, the tag of deadbeat on the part of the United States may be undeserved.

This brought to mind a recent incident involving our HMO in a billing dispute over a clearly covered service. On paper, we looked like deadbeats. However, I would have been foolish and irresponsible to pay a debt I did not owe. With my persistence and the HMO's investigation, the error was corrected, the bill was paid by the HMO, and indeed, we were not deadbeats.

On a national scale, the GAO reports that the United Nations owes the United States a substantially larger sum than we owe it. As the United States assists the United Nations all over the world, common sense would dictate that we expend enormous amounts of manpower and money to U.N. ventures. How much does it cost taxpayers to keep our troops in Bosnia alone?

The GAO report certainly warrants the position taken by Rep. Roscoe G. Bartlett and others in refusing a carte blanche payment to the U.N. It would be irresponsible to make any payment until the GAO figures are thoroughly researched. I relayed this message to both of Maryland's senators.

I sleep better at night knowing that some of our representatives are diligent watchdogs of the people's business. It is doubly heartening that our representative in the 6th District is leading the change. Thank you, Mr. Bartlett.

Helga Rottach


Letter about Diana was cold, heartless

It's a shame that such a tasteless letter about Princess Diana (Sept. 18) can be published when its sole purpose is to insult. I can respect the fact that some people may not have been interested in her, but to say, ''I could care even less about her now that she's dead,'' is cold and heartless.

Diana was a wonderful, caring person. If nothing else, she was a mother of two young boys who will now have to face life without her. Perhaps the letter writer is one of those at the opposite end of that ''moral spectrum'' Earl Spencer spoke of.

Tracy Das


Rosenthal is right: Ripken should rest

I offer my congratulations to The Sun for printing Ken Rosenthal's Sept. 18 column, "Sitting down would be a stand-up move." Many times I have taken issue, even offense, at particular columns, but this one is truly responsible journalism. The Sun is to be commended.

Being 57, I understand only too well the facts of aging and attendant aches and pains. Cal Ripken is not immune to these. I hope he and the O's deal with this in a responsible, mature and upfront manner.

There is no disgrace in aging. While sad, and this is a sad matter, Mr. Rosenthal's statement is correct. Let Ripken have his at-bats until the game becomes official. Then give him a rest. He deserves and needs it. On to the Series!

David R. Kreiser


Pub Date: 9/28/97

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