I was utterly appalled when I read the article about the desert tortoises (8-26, A2, “Desert tortoises face grim fate”). Because of a shortage of funds, the refuge in Nevada can no longer afford to care for 1,400 tortoises, which are on the endangered species list, so about half of them will be euthanized.
Never mind that there are fines and penalties for harming or killing one of these animals. Our hypocritical government seems to think it is above the very law it created to protect these creatures.
But I have a solution for obtaining more funds for the tortoises. I propose we give the salaries of elected government officials who aren’t doing their jobs (that would be most of them) to the tortoises and other endangered or threatened animals.
Why should my tax dollars pay the salary of someone who is incapable of carrying out his or her basic job responsibilities, such as setting our national budget? The taxpayers should have more say in how their tax dollars are spent.
I vote we give it to the tortoises and not to the overpaid, underperforming officials.
Mary Ann Wieczkowski
Leawood Ads for abortion
How interesting that the South Wind Women’s Center in Wichita seeks to “normalize” abortion (8-28, A10, “Broadcaster to run clinic ads”).
There is absolutely nothing normal about killing one’s own offspring.
It’s sad to hear that Clear Channel caved in and will air ads for this abortion clinic after initially taking a stand for what is right.
Grain Valley Business raiding
Why do Star editors and writers persist in using “border war” to describe economic or sports competition in the bistate area? Shouldn’t journalists be masters of their craft — wordsmiths who rise above stale, time-worn cliches?
War is not a contest between corporate CEOs whose aims are a Vanderbilt-esque public-be-damned reach into taxpayers’ pockets. War is not a game between two teams of pampered young athletes, playing on the finest facilities money can buy and led by overpaid coaches, where hardship is failing to make a bowl appearance.
War is suffering and dying. War is Valley Forge and Yorktown. War is Fort McHenry. War is Antietam, Gettysburg and Appomattox. War is the Marne, the Western Front, Verdun. War is Pearl Harbor, Bataan, Midway, Normandy, the Battle of the Bulge, Iwo Jima and Okinawa. War is Korea, Vietnam, Kosovo, Iraq.
Oh, and war is what killed my grandson in Afghanistan on July 23. An insurgent suicide bomber attacked his unit, killing three Americans instantly, with two others dying from wounds later.
Don’t demean his sacrifice and the supreme sacrifice of other young Americans by inane analogies to what was the real border war.
Neal K. Nichols
Overland Park Questioning Obama
As an independent voter, whenever I hear any president promise transparency and then lie and give us opaqueness on vital issues, I am very disappointed.
I have five simple questions that President Barack Obama has refused to answer. In fact, he lets these questions slide off as if he had Teflon shoulders whenever the subjects are brought up.
• How difficult is it for our “transparent” president to tell us what he was doing and where he was during the eight hours of the Benghazi terrorist attack?
• Is it hypocritical for our president to demand answers (and rightfully so) from the military concerning sexual harassment while refusing to demand answers on who gave the Benghazi stand-down order?
• Is transparency being practiced when 20 or so survivors of Benghazi are still sequestered and not allowed to be questioned by the press or Congress?
• Who in Washington gave the employees of the Internal Revenue Service in Cincinnati orders to target and harass groups and individuals?
• And finally, how can our president promote and employ Eric Holder, Susan Rice and Lois Lerner when government documents clearly testify of their dishonest misrepresentations?
Now, should I plan on being audited?
Kansas City Climate change spoof
A cartoon in The Star on Aug. 28 ridicules deniers of climate change.
Who’s denying climate change?
Hasn’t it always changed? When it stops changing, that would merit a headline.
Bonner Springs Backward tax cuts
The commercial for Grow Missouri fails to tell the whole story. The story behind the commercial and its political action committee is its major contributor, Rex Sinquefield.
Mr. Sinquefield is a major driving force behind the extreme right wing in Missouri. He would like to drive Missouri into being a no-state-income-tax state, which sounds good for a talking point.
But he would like to replace the income tax with a sales-tax-based economy. In the long run, a sales-tax-based economy would hurt only the poor and middle class and not a billionaire like Mr. Sinquefield.
In a sales-tax-based economy, when the state does not collect enough revenue it starts cutting services such as education funding, infrastructure and social services.
Mr. Sinquefield and his ilk have had the luxury of massive tax cuts for more than 11 years on the idea of creating jobs while creating very few and pocketing millions in tax cuts.
Grow Missouri is really out for the upper crust and not the middle class, which pays the bulk of the taxes in this state.
Please do your homework before supporting PACs with catchy names. Please support the middle class.
Independence Hands off Syria
The same intelligence agency that told us Iraq had weapons of mass destruction is now certain, without any doubt, that Syrian President Bashar Assad used chemical weapons on his own people. Even if he did, we have no business interfering in another country.
Our track record in this regard is poor. And since when did we become the world’s policemen?
Our so-called leaders in Washington need to mind our business and keep our resources home. We have issues here that they should be addressing.
Riverside TV ‘news’ in KC
Kansas City area viewers won’t have better luck at any other station besides KSHB, Channel 41. They’re all clones of each other.
“Breaking news, the world quit turning, but first a mini-forecast of the weather.”
Then viewers get a short ditty on the breaking news, 14 commercials and a stand-up with another mini-weathercast.
Fluff and banter of what they’re going to tell us next. The only things that are different are the faces and maybe a three-second time differential.
Don Rinck Sr.
Mission Cheney for Senate
No, no, no. Liz Cheney running for the Senate? Our sense of justice protests.
What happened to humility, to honesty, to history?
Her father assisted in getting us into forever wars without a whiff of reflection or apology.
Now, she is going to save us from all the mopping-up because of calamitous decisions.
But Dick, the Koch brothers and the tea party can help her become a U.S. senator. These arrogant, living-in-a-bubble people leave me breathless.
Lee’s Summit Unjust CEO salaries
I truly fail to see how anyone can be worth the salaries that some CEOs earn today, and “The Bailed Out. Booted. Busted” report only confirmed my skepticism (8-28, A11, “Matching pay, results”).
Clearly, paying these obscene salaries isn’t attracting the best and the brightest.
Google “you vs. Paulson,” and you will see that if you earn $32,000 annually, it takes hedge-fund giant John Paulson 3.4 minutes to earn that. He earned $4.9 billion in 2009, an average of $13 million a day.
It would take a $32,000-a-year worker 153,125 years to earn the same. Imagine how long it would take him to earn a fast-food worker’s salary.
As Dickens’ Scrooge said, “I’ll retire to Bedlam.”