Olesker's bias against Ehrlich, Steele tiresome In...


July 19, 2002

Olesker's bias against Ehrlich, Steele tiresome

In attacking Rep. Robert L. Ehrlich and running mate Michael Steele's appeal to working-class voters, Michael Olesker resorts to insupportable generalizations that imply a center-right political philosophy is incompatible with a real concern for that constituency ("Ehrlich, Steele have some explaining to do," July 11).

It seems every time a Republican candidate argues that stimulating the market that provides jobs is a more realistic and effective remedy for unemployment and underemployment than resorting to government command-and-control and benefit programs, people with Mr. Olesker's biases assume that person's motives are suspect and greedy robber barons are manipulating the debate.

Mr. Olesker has not had to work for a Maryland district in a Congress controlled by the likes of Reps. Newt Gingrich and Tom DeLay. Mr. Ehrlich has - effectively.

Mr. Olesker has not had to deal with being a politically active African-American challenging the conventional wisdom of a special-interest establishment wedded to dependence on government. Mr. Steele has - successfully, and with class.

Perhaps from here on we could all debate people's policies and stop questioning their motives and integrity.

Anthony Cobb


The writer is a member of the Baltimore Republican Party's Central Committee.

As a reader of The Sun and a Democrat, I'm really getting frustrated with Mr. Olesker's extreme distortion of every move and position of Rep. Robert L. Ehrlich.

Were the Republicans in Congress solely responsible for the biggest economic gap between the haves and the have-nots? No. The Democrats are an equal partner in the "big-business" culture.

And before criticizing Michael Steele's selection as "empty symbolism," perhaps Mr. Olesker could listen to him and note the reasons he chose to be a Republican.

During the upcoming campaign, I hope Mr. Olesker and other journalists will take their powerful positions seriously, discuss both candidates objectively and leave their biases at home.

Stanley J. Tupaj


Michael Olesker's left-wing political ideology has always been obvious in his columns. However, his relentless attacks on Rep. Robert L. Ehrlich and his running mate, Michael Steele, are over the top.

It seems that every week Mr. Olesker has a new column bashing Mr. Ehrlich in a mean-spirited way. This is very unfortunate and poisons the dialogue in this campaign.

I think Mr. Olesker is the one who has the explaining to do. He should explain why he is doing everything in his power to damage the reputation of Mr. Ehrlich by continuing to throw mud at him.

Andy Sozio


Rhetoric alone won't stop fraud

President Bush's corporate responsibility speech was certainly less than satisfying ("Scandals present dilemma for Bush," July 14).

Mr. Bush keeps talking about "corporate responsibility." How about political responsibility (and political greed, too)? Republicans accepted large corporate donations, won control of Congress and proceeded with the deregulation that made corporate looting easier.

The Bush administration is attempting a balancing act. It wants to appear to protect stockholders while doing nothing to jeopardize corporate campaign donations for the upcoming election.

Most important, the administration wants to "Wag the Dog" and get "corporate scandals" off the front page.

Richard L. Ottenheimer


Mfume himself earns poor grades

I find the use of a grading system for the hotel industry by the NAACP and its president, Kweisi Mfume, the height of arrogance ("NAACP sees progress with hotels," July 10). I think Mr. Mfume needs a report card of his own:

Continuing to foster poor race relations: A+

Following in the footsteps of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.: D

Maintaining the reputation of the NAACP: D

Distinguishing between entitlements and rights: D

Mr. Mfume should be given detention until he understands that equality and ascendancy are two completely different concepts.

Charles H. Thornton


A welcome reminder of Western smugness

"Swiss Cheese" (July 11) was a wonderful editorial - the best I've read in The Sun in years.

I congratulate The Sun for making the smugness of Western assumptions a topic for editorial discussion. I'm waiting - in vain, I suspect - for other papers or television commentators to do the same.

Peter Muncie


Gun control wastes funds, manpower

Reading the letters "Still-violent city needs new laws on deadly guns" and "Gun licensing makes owners accountable" made July 8 seem like gun control misinformation day.

Maryland is No. 1 in robbery rate again this year, according to the FBI. Focusing on the guns instead of the robbers, who may not even use a gun, is a waste of crime-fighting dollars and manpower.

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