Letters to the Editor

Readers react to the Keystone XL Pipeline, Gov. Brownback, Obamacare

Keystone pipeline

Now is the time to rally around President Barack Obama in his planned veto of the Keystone XL Pipeline.

This pipeline will not create jobs that will strengthen communities or lead to long-term financial security for individuals.

Instead, the alleged jobs will be temporary construction jobs, which means that workers will descend on a site and live in nearby trailers, buy expensive trucks that will be repossessed a few months later when the work runs out and then move on.

As much carbon as possible needs to remain in the ground, because when it is released into the atmosphere, the result is pollution, global warming and unpredictable weather patterns.

We need to structure our economy around renewables such as wind and solar.

Finally, the most important question we all need to ask ourselves is, Do we want our children to inherit an Earth that can sustain all of its wondrous creatures, including ourselves?

Margaret Kramar

Lecompton, Kan.

Kansas’ wrong focus

Maybe Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback should spend more time working on the state budget problems he has created and less time minding other business regarding abortion and other people’s personal issues (1-13, A4, “‘Crisis of the family’ cited”).

Gary Levin

Overland Park

Krugman column

Paul Krugman opposes the Keystone XL Pipeline, ridiculing the 42,000 construction jobs it is to create, but supports highway and bridge projects (1-13, Commentary, “Building roads, bridges would create jobs, too”).

He blames Republicans for jobs “lost” because of “destructive cuts” in federal spending but ignores President Barack Obama bragging about job growth.

He overlooks salient facts: The Keystone project is private money, bridges and highways are taxpayer money and the “destructive cuts” in federal spending result from the so-called sequester first proposed by the Obama administration, which is bragging about bringing down the federal budget deficit.

Krugman and other opponents of the Keystone project have seized on the recent and temporary drop in oil prices to oppose the pipeline and to propose an increase in gasoline taxes. Heaven forbid that working-class families should enjoy a respite from increases in the cost of living.

So, to Krugman, privately funded pipeline jobs are bad and deficit-funded highway jobs are good. Increased federal spending is good, but spending on defense (and the jobs created) is bad.

The lack of adherence to the facts and the lack of logical analysis by this brilliant economist, at least as brilliant as Jonathan Gruber of Obamacare fame, is staggering.

Jim O’Connell


Obamacare trap

Vermont passed a universal health care law in 2011. Community organizers convinced voters a state-run, single-payer health-care system would provide health care for everyone, regardless of income, health status or employment, and save Vermont $500 million per year.

Vermont just learned universal health care would cost $500 million per year instead of saving $500 million. Oops. Reality is hard.

Democratic Gov. Peter Shumlin canceled the state contract with consultant Jonathan “Voters are stupid” Gruber, and then canceled universal health care.

Vermont missed the cost estimate by $1 billion per year.

Was it a typo or just another lie? Now supporters are going to court to force the Legislature to implement the system, regardless of cost.

That brings us to Obamacare. President Barack Obama and the Democrats lied. The original cost estimate was just under $1 trillion.

Then it was $2 trillion. Now the Congressional Budget Office won’t even try to estimate it. And enrollment figures are impossible to verify.

Democrats will eventually say Obamacare is broken and we need single-payer, universal, federal health care.

Remember, when it sounds too good to be true, it usually is.

Let’s find a better way.

Bill Reynolds


Black homicides

Missouri had the highest rate of black homicide victims in 2012 (1-16, A5, “In 2012, Missouri had highest rate of black homicide victims”). Some of the latest were children in the Kansas City area.

Where is the Rev. Al Sharpton? He addresses the plights of many victims, yet Missouri had 34.98 homicides per 100,000 black residents.

Need I say more?

Jack Hatchett

Lee’s Summit

Gun safety matters

There have been so many gun tragedies this year already. There also are so many ways to prevent the killing and maiming.

For the deaths of children, our hearts go out. To adults, please lock up those lethal weapons so little ones cannot kill each other with them.

Could we require gun-safety classes of all gun owners and new purchasers, starting with learning to lock up the weapons of destruction?

Ann B. Stern


Good guys, guns

I cannot help but wonder how the National Rifle Association’s Wayne LaPierre would spin his mantra of “the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun” if he knew about the fatal shooting of Jon Bieker at his She’s A Pistol gun shop.

Jon was a tall, good guy, surrounded by guns in the store and yet was unable to protect himself from a bad guy with a gun.

Also, it makes me wonder how a good teacher with a gun could stop a bad guy with a gun.

Platitudes and empty phrases cloud the issue of who should have guns and who should not.

Judy Sherry

Grandmothers Against

Gun Violence

Kansas City

Donated deer meat

Missouri’s Share the Harvest program allows Missouri’s deer hunters to help many of our less fortunate citizens who need it to maintain good health and especially our needy children.

Since 1992, our hunters have donated more than 3 million pounds to this program.

Processing costs are subsidized for donation of a whole deer. Participating processors are listed in Missouri Department of Conservation publication “MDC’s 2014 Fall Deer & Turkey Hunting Regulations,” available at MDC offices, and online at mdc.mo.gov/sites/default/files/resources/2010/03/ftd2014.pdf.

Arthur W. Elkins


Great empires fall

All the world’s great empires — Greek, Roman, Persian, Ottoman and British — came to an end because of internal corruption and debauchery.

They were not defeated by external armies.

They rotted from the inside.

The United States today is working at having standards set by social norms. The absolute standards of the world’s great religions are being rejected in favor of progressive thinking and social norms.

Man is not smart enough to set the standards.

History will repeat itself.

Richard Blaisdell

Kansas City

Continuing thanks

Thanks come in so many varieties.

I thank the Kansas City Royals.

I thank advanced age for a long and varied memory.

I thank a short-life horizon that avoids frets and invites sighs, because I will not see this movie’s end.

I thank Russia because that country proves Cold War outcomes mean nothing.

I thank Iraq for outcome-free U.S. interventions.

I thank the U.S. Civil War for delivering a uniquely durable outcome (a well-defeated enemy keeps the peace?).

I thank trivial matters to cause jubilation from a Southeastern Conference football win by our southern-border state.

I thank Bersa, Charter, J.C. Higgins, Kel-Tec, L.C. Smith, Marlin, Mossberg, Noble, Ruger, Savage, Stoeger, Taurus and the United States for my fun with guns.

I thank the strange power of religions to handily intensify our soap opera mystery on earth.

Dale Basham

Lee’s Summit