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Published: Tuesday, 7/6/2004

Bush team can't salvage credibility

The arrogant way the Bush team and Republican party loyalists defend their mistakes and failed policies is astonishing. In an attempt to salvage their credibility and shore up their shaky standing with the American people, they have embarked on a campaign to discredit and vilify their critics and opponents.

Lacking a substantive hero of their own, Republicans have chosen to cast doubt on the heroic military service of presidential candidate John Kerry.

Fortunately there is an abundance of credible material substantiating Senator Kerry's four years of outstanding service to our country in the Vietnam War.

Sources such as the Selective Service System, the biographical "Tour" by Douglas Brinkley, and a June, 2003, series in the Boston Globe verify Senator Kerry's participation in deadly armed conflict with the Viet Cong in the dense jungles of the Mekong Delta and other Vietnam hot spots.

These independent biographies present an unbiased profile of John Kerry, a much-decorated Navy war veteran.

For those who ridicule him for protesting the Vietnam War, I would suggest there is no better critic of a situation than one who has been on the inside of it.

The angry rhetoric and churlish response to criticism exhibited by George Bush and Company send a clear message that they have no reasonable explanation or valid defense for their miserable record.

There is a growing awareness of the Bush Administration's duplicity and bad judgment. Americans love their country too much to permit these shenanigans to continue and deep in their hearts they know it's time for a change.

JOAN BRADNER

Carriage Drive

America has spent millions of dollars on the war in Iraq and continues to spend millions more to study rocks on Mars while millions of Americans remain jobless, homeless, and in poverty.

I don't get it. Do you?

Tony Daniels

Potomac Drive

Feb. 16 was a tragic day in my life and the lives of many others. I'm grateful to everyone in our wonderful community for their love, compassion, and support for all the families and friends of these great men who died and were injured in the bridge accident.

It has meant more than you will ever know.

Robert Lipinski, Jr., was a very special man with a heart as big as his 6' 8" frame. I'll never forget his reply when I asked him how he could stand working in such horrible weather conditions.

He told me with the biggest smile on his face, "I love it, I love building bridges.

As our bridge continues to be built I ask that your prayers also continue to keep all the men and women who will complete this beautiful bridge safe.

God bless them all.

KATHY McGRANAHAN

South Avenue

There seems to be a good bit of concern about those electronic voting machines Lucas County is planning to rent for the November election. I can understand because I own a computer that often surprises me.

Wouldn't it be wise to consider contacting a printer and ordering paper ballots for this election? Couldn't cost any more than the lease.

Oh, I know it would take a lot of extra time to tally paper ballots, but, at least, there would be something to count!

Jim Richard

Algonquin Parkway

A recent Forum letter asserted "that there are American oil reserves enough for the next 150 years."

Data posted on the Department of Energy's Web site suggest otherwise.

The DOE reports that the U.S.A. consumed 7.1 billion barrels of petroleum (broadly defined) in 2002; 150 years at 7.1 billion barrels per year totals over 1 trillion barrels, 30 times the DOE's estimate of domestic petroleum reserves (32 billion barrels).

Between 1992 and 2002, our average rate of oil consumption increased about 1.45 percent per year.

When we factor normal growth in demand for oil into the spreadsheet, during 2154 (150 years hence) we will burn 63 billion barrels, with total U.S. consumption during the 150-year interval of 4 trillion barrels.

Global reserves are currently estimated at 1 trillion barrels, about two-thirds in Middle Eastern fields.

It would take more than 60 new fields, each the size of Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (using the most optimistic ANWR estimates), to bring U.S. reserves to 1 trillion barrels.

If all of those new oil fields are really out there waiting to be discovered, we geophysicists would like to know where they are.

Please send me the map!

I've spent vacation time prospecting for oil in the Illinois Basin, where there are already wells (mostly dry) drilled about every mile, and have not hit pay dirt - yet.

By the way, the governor of Florida who recently convinced Washington to block access to promising prospects in the Gulf of Mexico happens to be Republican.

Donald J. Stierman

Associate Professor of Geophysics

University of Toledo

Will Rogers used to say that all he knew he learned from the papers.

Rogers would surely be confused by your article, "Michigan man accused of fleeing state police."

The man was said to be an illegal immigrant who would be turned over to the border patrol.

When did Michigan separate from the U.S. and become a foreign nation?

We have about 2.5 million of those illegal immigrants here in California, but I never dreamed they were from Michigan.

Barbara Vickroy

Escondido, Calif

I remember Gov. Bob Taft warning us about voting for his opponent during the last election because he would raise taxes on many things. Oh, the irony of it.

Donald C. Wenslow

Sylvania

Your June 25 editorial, "Visceral and vengeful," was a powerful argument for the adage, "two wrongs don't make a right." I agree with your position, save for one ill-considered sentence following your comment concerning those who "scrawled derogatory remarks, including some about Allah, on walls."

You wrote, "Did they not know that the name refers to the one God or Yahweh most Americans worship? Likely not."

If they do not, you should understand the distinction. Those of the Islamic faith whose holy book is the Qur'an worship Allah.

Those of the Christian faith whose holy book is the Bible, worship God (or Yahweh, in your words).

Edward Slack

Bannockburn Drive

Let's face it. Many folks buy gas-guzzling trucks for a testosterone rush. Road-bullying, cowboy-riding, and exemption from pollution-control devices appeal to them in this uncivil age. Let them agonize about fuel prices while they ponder their choice of a 500-horsepower vehicle, unnecessary as it is to carry a lawn mower or the kids.

On the other hand, I think I have the gasoline industry's rationale figured out.

Assuming they felt they could profit at a target of $1.80 a gallon, they raised the price to over $2 for a while, then when they dropped it to the $1.80 level, we all felt like they were doing us a big favor. Possible?

STEVEN G. SIROTNYAK

Sylvania



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