Letters To The Editor

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

August 16, 2004

Federal Reserve loses touch with economy's woes

Federal Reserve Board Chairman Alan Greenspan must go. This last quarter-point raise in the interest rate shows that this man and his organization is no longer capable of recognizing the truth about the economy ("Federal Reserve raises rate a quarter-point as expected," Aug. 11).

Mr. Greenspan needs to get out of his ivory tower, rid himself of his six-figure income and walk the streets to see how the economy is really doing. The bottom line: It is on life support. Few jobs are being created and those that are created offer decreased wages and fewer benefits.

The engine that drives this economy right now is the wage-earning public. Corporations are contributing little and seem more interested in helping the economy of China than that of the United States.

But now Mr. Greenspan seems to be trying to cripple that engine. This quarter-point rate rise will make mortgages, home equity loans and future loans on big-ticket items more expensive.

Gas will soon be $2 a gallon, health care premiums will rise, government "fees" will increase and wages will continue to stagnate.

As Mr. Greenspan leads us back into a recession, as he did several years ago when he also tightened credit too quickly, will our two presidential candidates stand up to this icon, tell him he has made a mistake, and promise better leadership in a new administration?

Alan McAllister

Severna Park

City's failed schools need a new trustee

The Sun's editorial "In the dock" (Aug. 6) was totally biased in its depiction of the situation concerning Baltimore's public schools. We, the taxpayers of Maryland, are tired of contributing more and more money to a system that is dysfunctional in providing a solid education to the students and continues to mismanage money, confront massive deficits and has no structure for accountability.

I applaud the proposal state Superintendent Nancy S. Grasmick made to the court. It's time for a serious solution to the serious problems being discussed.

This is not about politics but about the students of the city.

Jean Thomas

Lutherville

Count on parents to handle their kids

As The Sun writes, "Despite all efforts, the disparities in health and well-being between Maryland's white children and its black children not only continue but in some cases are increasing. ... That's just unacceptable" ("All kids count," editorial, Aug 10). I agree. So when is the quality of parenting in some families going to improve?

Typically, The Sun places responsibility on government, but I believe the most significant point in the editorial was this: "Some of the problems tracked in the report result from personal or family irresponsibility -- teens having babies, children dropping out of school."

During my three-plus decades as a Baltimore school teacher, I witnessed far too many immature parents doing a miserable job of raising their kids and, consequently, too many kids making disastrous life choices including giving up on school and becoming immature, incompetent parents themselves.

The government of a free society cannot be held responsible for every personal failure in people's lives. It is time for more African-American leaders to show the same courage Bill Cosby did and put responsibility where it belongs.

The quality of a child's life is directly proportional to the maturity, education, wisdom and love of his or her parents; it is the parents' and their families' excuses for their failings that are "unacceptable."

Paul Totaro

Baltimore

Expatriate's anger carries little weight

I am an American and I love this country; therefore, it annoys me when someone like Elizabeth Scanlon Thomas, who has not lived in the United States for 15 years, writes a column about what she does not like about America ("A different America," Opinion * Commentary, Aug. 10).

The majority of Americans recognize our problems but do not forget all the wonderful things in this country.

I'm sorry The Sun chose to give space to Ms. Thomas.

Senora McGuire

Baltimore

Kerry had no power to react to attacks

In his column "Kerry makes himself fair game on 9/11, Vietnam" (Opinion * Commentary, Aug. 11), Cal Thomas claims that Sen. John Kerry showed a lack of decision-making ability on Sept. 11, 2001. He suggests President Bush's seven minutes of inaction after the second tower was struck is comparable to Mr. Kerry's 34 minutes of inaction that day.

Mr. Thomas fails to note, however, that on Sept. 11, 2001, Mr. Bush was president of the United States, commander in chief of the armed forces and chief executive officer of all federal law enforcement.

Mr. Bush's ability to act was thus almost limitless, yet he did nothing for seven minutes. On the other hand, Mr. Kerry was a U.S. Senator from Massachusetts whose only power was to propose and vote on legislation and give advice and consent to presidential appointments.

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