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Published: Sunday, 12/4/2005

Oil execs OK, but stuck with government

I like oil executives and I hate our government.

People have been complaining of price gouging, but I would like to make a simple argument on the gougers' behalf. As a private citizen I can take direct action against the gougers. I can take public transportation. I can carpool. I can move close to work and drive a bike. I can install a wood burner in my house or solar paneling on my roof.

All of these things I have every freedom to do. But what are my alternatives if I do not like the way my government is run?

The government can send the military to kill foreigners in my name. Politicians can subsidize any favorite public project to buy votes. They can spend not only my money, but also borrow on my future earnings and spend it any any way they like and I have no say in the matter.

I can move into the mountains or I can immigrate elsewhere. If I immigrate elsewhere, the government claims a right to tax my next 10 years of earnings and I can be extradited or not allowed in to see my family. Not something the love-it-or-leave-it crowd shouts out at the unpatriotic. This is servitude.

If I think the government stinks, I have little recourse. I have to get on my hands and knees and beg some congressman to take action for me. I can try to run for Congress myself, but without the millions of dollars in kickbacks from the recipients of my own tax dollars, I have no ability to fund a counter-propaganda campaign to woo the drooling masses.

No matter what the oil executives decide to charge me, at least they provide me something useful.

DENNIS BOYLON

Grand Rapids

It was reported that Ex-FEMA Director Michael Brown is setting up a disaster preparedness firm. Mr. Brown had little knowledge or experience in the disaster preparedness and recovery field before his appointment to the FEMA position. He now joins the ranks of many ex-government officials who are consultants.

I believe that consultants should have a minimum of 10 years experience in their field of expertise. Consultants should have a degree or certification of educational accomplishments as validation of their knowledge.

I suggest that any business hiring a consulting firm should study the resumes and qualifications of the consulting personnel. If you are paying $100 or more an hour for a consultant, you deserve an experienced and educated expert in his field.

DAVID R. GROSS

Tiffinand

Answer me this: When has Robert Miller or any other CEO taken a 64 percent decrease in their pay? Could it be that Mr. Miller and Delphi are just pawns in the war of getting rid of unions and their workers' wages? Once again Delphi is another case of poor management. Mr. Miller wasn't worried about things when his pockets were full - and still are.

Now he wants GM and other auto makers to go down because they didn't bail him out of his own mess.

CHUCK BEAVERS

Lambertville, Mich.

Ohio Catholic Conference director Tim Lauckhaupt's suggestion that performing criminal background checks on priests and other church leaders will weed out sexual offenders from the ministry and make SB 17's passage unnecessary is laughable at best.

Criminal background checks are completely ineffective when previous cases have been diverted from the criminal court system, as was revealed in The Blade's investigation into how local police officers abetted the diocese in hiding sexual abuse cases.

Criminal background checks are absolutely meaningless when diocesan officials don't openly admit that they directed their legal counsel to utilize laws to expunge the few convictions that made it to the criminal courts in the first place.

Given that the local leadership of the diocese is unwilling to cooperate with the investigation of the murder of Sr. Margaret Ann Pahl, resulting in the execution of two no-knock search warrants on their offices, why would anyone think that have really weeded out all the sexual criminals from their ranks?

LINDA WATERS

Sandusky

A war of growing unpopularity within the country. A war entered into for seemingly good reasons, but continued in the face of evidence that those reasons were inaccurate. The reason given for staying the course: the liberation of millions of people and the establishment of a fledgling democracy. Growing resistance to the war from the political opponents of the nation's leader. Iraq 2005? No, America 1778. The country in question: France.

It was France, currently the butt of many jokes with cowardice as the punch line, that came to the aid of the struggling new American nation.

How sad it is that liberal opponents of President Bush such as Sen. Harry Reid, Sen. John Kerry, and Sen. Edward Kennedy lack even the courage of the French to stay the course and help the new Iraqi nation lay its foundation.

In 1778 the French helped to nurture our nation to greatness. In 2005 these senators and others diminish that greatness and themselves become the punch line.

SCOTT FOOR

Rossford

No matter how bad things seem to be going, all we have to do is look around and someone has it a little worse than we do. The Salvation Army volunteers are standing by stores ringing their bells hoping to make it a nicer Christmas for someone else.

As co-chairman of the Shriner's Hospital tabloid promotion that recently concluded in northwest Ohio, I personally know how appreciative volunteers are when you throw a dollar or your loose change in their bucket. It makes their time standing there worth it.

All of our monies collected with exception of the cost of papers went directly to our Shrine Hospitals and our local transportation fund, which transports area children to our nearest hospitals in Cincinnati, Chicago, and Erie, Pa., free of charge.

We, like the Old Newsboys, who will be collecting next week, have no administrative fees. Please give generously!

BERNIE WELNIAK

Whitehouse

How dare George Bush question my loyalty or that of other Americans because we want peace for our country?

If anyone's loyalty is in question it would be George Bush's. He took us into a war that no one wants - except him.

The body count is rising every day but that doesn't seem to affect him. I'm not sure if anything would affect him. But what if his daughters were part of the body count? Maybe that would affect him. He's willing to send everybody's family into harm's way except his own.

As Americans, we need to keep questioning this administration. It's a sad day in this country when people question your loyalty because you stand for peace.

As a Christian you should want no less.

BARBARA FOLTZ

Holland

The United Jewish Council of Greater Toledo is saddened that the neo-Nazi group will again be appearing in Toledo on Dec. 10. We support the First Amendment to the Constitution guaranteeing a person's right to freedom of speech. We do not, however, support people who spread hate and prejudice and incite violence.

What we can do as a community is ignore this group and not give it the satisfaction of confrontation. Stand up for acceptance of all people no matter what their race, religion, or ethnic origin. Toledo should stand together as one united community and not allow this group's message of hate to be spread.

WENDY GOLDSTEIN

Community Relations Director

United Jewish Council of Greater Toledo



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