Letters To The Editor


March 20, 2003

Liberal litany just cannot win a wide audience

Bruce Kluger's column "Cable talk television shuts out liberal voices" (Opinion*Commentary, March 18) implies that MSNBC canceled Phil Donahue's talk show because Mr. Donahue wasn't sufficiently pro-war.

Mr. Kluger seems to ignore the fact that liberals, whether on talk radio or cable TV - both of which are competitive venues - have invariably failed to draw competitive audiences. And Mr. Donahue failed because he, like other liberals, attempted to preach an unacceptable philosophy to his audience.

The tired litany of the left wing thrives in the print media and on network TV where only one viewpoint is given. That viewpoint collapses on talk radio or cable TV, where competing conservative points of view are also presented.

And the reason for the failure of liberals on these latter markets is not, as Mr. Kluger implied, network bias.

The fact is that the public has rejected a philosophy that insists government rather than the individual should determine what is best for that individual; that conciliation is better than standing up for principle; that peace at any price is better than war; and that criminals should be rehabilitated rather than incarcerated.

W. C. Harsanyi


Surtax option sure beats slots

Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. is trying everything to get some sort of slots bill passed this year. His latest bill includes language to exempt the track owners from local zoning laws ("Ehrlich's slots revision aims to strip local zoning power," March 14). This from someone who once promised to allow local jurisdictions to vote up or down on slots.

Mr. Ehrlich has shown no leadership on budget issues. It seems he just wants to be able to say he never raised income taxes when he runs for office in the future, regardless of the consequences for Maryland.

The two-year surtax on high-income taxpayers proposed by House Speaker Michael E. Busch is a very sensible alternative to the rash rush for slots money that will have negative, long-term effects on Maryland.

Roger Fitzgerald


Put slots parlors in the schools?

Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. and the supporters of slots are missing a trick. If slots are to benefit neighborhoods and schools, then slots should be in neighborhoods and schools. In fact, the best way to put slots in neighborhoods is to put them in schools.

The benefits would be enormous. Mothers who can't easily speed off to Pimlico Race Course and other proposed slots venues would be able to wager a few bucks while dropping off their kids and picking them up.

The kids themselves would receive a practical education in the art of gambling, formerly condemned but now redefined as a benefit to society. And the schools would receive a percentage of the take.

And in this overfed society, what better way to prevent obesity in children than to encourage them to spend their lunch money on the slots?

My message to Mr. Ehrlich and the legislature: Think big.

Paul Romney


Aid to Israel brings murderous results

I hope Peter Hermann's article "Israeli bulldozer crushes U.S. protester" (March 17) will shock us U.S. citizens into questioning what the government of Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon is doing with the billions of dollars in aid that our government has been handing over to him.

If we have not been moved by accounts of Palestinian children, women and the elderly shot, crushed or left to die at checkpoints, perhaps Rachel Corrie's death will make us sit up and take notice.

As a fellow activist was quoted as saying, "I just hope this makes a few Americans think about what is happening here. She was an American killed by an American machine."

The Rev. John J. Podsiadlo


Demolishing homes combats terrorism

How sad that Rachel Corrie accidentally died trying to protect Palestinian homes ("Israeli bulldozer crushes U.S. protester," March 17).

But these home-demolition raids by the Israelis are in retaliation for the Palestinian terrorist bombing raids on unarmed Israeli civilians in schools, buses, restaurants and shopping centers.

Ms. Corrie would still be alive today if she'd been able to distinguish between humanity and habitat.

Elaine Rosenbloom


Turning empathy into revulsion

With supreme arrogance and insensitivity, President Bush has turned the love and compassion the world felt for us 18 months ago into a hatred and revulsion that will cause us to reap more attacks like those on Sept. 11 for generations to come.

He has taken an enormous budget surplus and, by handing his wealthy and privileged peers tax cuts they neither need nor deserve, brought this country to its knees economically, with thousands upon thousands of those not blessed by his largesse now out of work and homeless.

And his blatant attempts to do all he can to assist his business cronies, without regard to the effect on our waters and forests and air, will do irreparable damage to a planet already struggling to survive.

Help me here: What exactly does it take to get impeached?

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