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Published: Sunday, 12/12/2010

Public wants fightin' lean city schools

Memo to the Toledo Board of Education: You don't need a big committee to advise you (“TPS may hire consultant for $72,000 to get public input,” Dec. 9).

Big committees move slow — think Congress. The ship is sinking; you need to act.

You don't need public hearings until you have something to say; 99 percent of the community wants the same thing, and most of the time you'll hear only from the other 1 percent at public hearings.

We want you to cut costs, reform contracts, and improve performance. And we want you to do it comprehensively, as Jeep, Dana, Owens Corning, and countless other companies have done, and then emerge lean and fighting strong.

So figure out all the options. Then lock yourselves in a conference center with the superintendent and his team and the heads of all your labor unions. If you think it will help, bring along a few trusted outsiders, maybe even some business and labor leaders who have been through systemic restructuring.

Don't leave until you've agreed on how to restructure TPS. Next, tell the voters exactly what you're doing and why, and what it will cost. Hold fast. Then put a new levy on the ballot in the spring with the restructuring you're committed to if it passes.

Peter R. Silverman

Barrington Road

Editor's Note: The writeris a former member of the Toledo Board of Education.

Define the basics, and then we'll talk

Would someone define basic education? What is it that students need to learn and teachers need to teach?

Another issue that needs to be discussed is what is curricular and what is extra- curricular.

If we start with these basic issues, we might be on the road to success.

Bob Holup

Delence Street

Grinch makes U.S. tax policy

Once again, those of us on Social Security will not see a cost-of-living increase in our checks.

Thank you so much for seeing to it that we have to continue to find new and innovative ways to pay our rising utility bills, housing costs, taxes, medical expenses, grocery costs, and gasoline prices. Tax breaks for the richest continue, and the poorest and neediest receive higher taxes.

The Grinch is alive and well and living in Washington.

Rosalie Bravo

Commonwealth Avenue

Bashing tax cuts is plain wrong

Blade op-ed columnist Marilou Johanek is irresponsible to parrot the inaccuracies of Sen. Sherrod Brown's comments on the Bush “tax cuts” (“Midterm-election trust was misplaced,” Dec. 9).

The assertion that tax cuts will increase the deficit or have the government begging the Chinese for loans is absurd.

Should the proposal to extend the “tax cuts” pass, taxes will not decrease for the rich or the middle class; they will remain the same. No money will be spent to support the proposal, because nothing will have changed.

Are Ms. Johanek and Mr. Brown misinformed on basic economics, or is this a deliberate attempt to deceive the public?

Jim Krusinski

Goddard Road

Party's over, folks; let's do cleanup

The party has been over for some time, but Americans refuse to clean up and turn out the lights.

We've embraced a bloated welfare state without realizing that the level of production needed to sustain a welfare state cannot be sustained by a welfare state.

WikiLeaks has confirmed we bomb civilians in places like Yemen and then wonder why they send bombers on our airplanes.

We've seen billions of stimulus dollars going to foreign banks, union voters, connected profitable companies such as Goldman Sachs that continue to give million-dollar bonuses, and General Electric, which then lays off employees.

We are witnessing “too big to fail” bailouts of countries such as Greece. The bailouts of Spain, Portugal, and Italy are next. That will be followed by states such as California and New York.

We should start looking at government bailouts as toxic, and bankruptcy that allows corporations, cities, states, and countries to reorganize as therapeutic. Then we'll have it right.

The party has to end and the hangover must be endured to regain our stability and freedom.

Jim Boehm

Drummond Road

Time to review Bell's leadership

Let's recap what Mayor Mike Bell has done for Toledo during hard economic times:

wIncreased the trash fee.

• Asked to raise water and sewer rates.

• Taken much-needed money out of the capital improvement fund (I wonder whether the voters who approved the transfer will be singing the same tune when they damage their autos on pothole-filled roads).

• Given raises to the unions.

• Assessed Toledoans for streetlights that don't work.

The mayor is right about one thing: The Toledo public schools need help. As a graduate of a city school, he certainly didn't learn about budgets and public trust.

Terry Majoros

Belmar Avenue

Give city jobs to unemployed

In his ivory tower, counting his double-dipping income, Mayor Bell comes up with some fancy ideas to raise money for Toledo.

But the rest of us live under much different conditions. He should see how people are striving to get every penny's worth out of their dollars. Let him set his sights on those who must participate in sharing the load.

When are the higher-ups in all municipal governments going to stop firing or laying off necessary people — teachers, school bus drivers, crossing guards — and instead fire those who get good-paying jobs with expensive benefits as political payoffs, and are likely to do more double-dipping?

Give the jobs to the unemployed and save the government some money.

Adele Federman

Mockingbird Lane

Dogs must move over for real news

I am disgusted by your Dec. 10 article “Questions arise over once-gentle dog put to death” about a dog in the care of Lucas County Dog Warden Julie Lyle.

I cannot believe this made it on the front page as “news.” Could The Blade not find a positive event to report?

We have no jobs and low pay, and Toledoans are losing their homes. We have more serious issues to worry about than this one.

Andrew Tepper

Douglas Road

All must share loadof fixing economy

To address our national debt, we must both cut spending and increase taxes. To do one but not the other will not work.

As patriotic Americans, we must all share the burden.

Richard Kolb

Whitehouse

Leading our nation the best gift of all

This Christmas season Congress owes no one a gift. Congress owes us integrity and real leadership.

Lock the door, break out the mattresses, and freeze lawmakers' paychecks until they govern.

Congress needs to listen, learn, lead, and legislate with common sense for the common good.

Douglas M. Winkler

Blissfield



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