Letters to the Editor

Your views in 200 words or less

Archives: Aug. 2010

Aug.
30th

TAXES: Wonder why income tax is wanted?

A Wall Street Journal article (8-27) on California public pensions by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger provides useful insight into the state of public employee pension plans. It is clear there is unfunded taxpayer liability for these pensions. We can thank the governor of California for being so forthright.

Unfortunately, the governor of Washington state is not so candid. Washington state has a similar unfunded liability problem. It is just proportionately smaller than California.

The Washington state unfunded public pension liability is part of the motivation to institute a Washington state income tax. Let’s spread the wealth!

Remember, voters; November is coming.

Aug.
30th

ISLAM: Learn more about religion’s medieval Koranic tenets

Re: “American Islamophobia running out of control” (editorial, 8-27).

The editorial bemoaned a rise of “Islamophobia” (undefined) in the United States.

I suggest that those who have not studied the Koran, or perhaps even read it, do read it and at least some of the voluminous commentary about it by Muslim scholars. Then I believe the linkage between a deeper understanding of Islam and the possible rising antagonism of a free, modern, constitutionally governed and secular people toward Islam’s political goals – based as they are upon Islam’s fundamental medieval Koranic tenets – will make that linkage between rising concern

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Aug.
30th

ELECTION: Murray and Rossi ads abysmal

Dino Rossi and Patty Murray need to knock it off. Were they both in absentia when their campaign managers selected their TV ad campaigns? Do they ever watch them?

These abysmal ads sound as if they were produced by the same writers, delivered in the same negative, softly spoken tones.

We, the public expect better. Why should we vote for either of them?

Aug.
30th

EDUCATION: Unions have higher priority than children

Re: “Race to Top grades put Washington near bottom of class” (Peter Callaghan column, 8-29).

Apparently the state’s educational vehicle is breaking down. However, the Legislature, the governor and school chiefs have decided to continue their journey with no attempts to avoid further dumbing down of our students.

It appears that inaction is due in part to appeasing teachers’ unions. Union interests take priority over the educational well-being of students.

It is clear that teachers unions do not have the students as a priority. A telling statement attributed to the late American Federation of Teachers union president Al Shanker: “When

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Aug.
30th

CRIME: Car prowlers steal from children

I teach pre-kindergarten and kindergarten at a public school on Hilltop and recently have been preparing my classroom for the coming year. The other night someone got into my car and took a brand new art easel and a CD player (used for listening to stories), among other things. They also took a box full of objects that start with the different letters of the alphabet which I have been collecting during my teaching career.

These items were not toys but teaching necessities for my class.

I am hoping that this year I will instill personal responsibility and respect

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Aug.
30th

PUGET SOUND: Where is the taxpayer’s protection?

Re: “Agency committed to Sound cleanup, earning public trust” (Viewpoint, 8-25).

Martha Kongsgaard’s Viewpoint about the Puget Sound Partnership is way off. The “measures” she cites to fix the inappropriate use of funds at the partnership are like putting a Band-Aid over a cut artery.

The real problem started when David Dicks was chosen to run a newly create environmental bureaucracy with dozens of staffers and tens of millions of dollars at its disposal to spend willy nilly on “green” projects. Dicks had no previous administrative skills, and he even admits that in the press.

I just can’t believe that

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Aug.
30th

WASHAM: Hold both assessors accountable for harm

Re: “Washam paints bull’s eye on Pierce County taxpayers” (editorial, 8-29).

The News Tribune bewails possible costs to taxpayers of potential lawsuits resulting from Pierce County Assessor-Treasurer Dale Washam’s undeniably inept administrative and personnel management and ignores the over-assessments and inflated tax bills already caused by past Assessor-Treasurer Ken Madsen’s stoppage of legally required inspections.

The County Council pronounced in 2009 that the missed inspections caused “no harm” to taxpayers, but they addressed only lost revenues from missed inpections and ignored the fact that accurate assessments depend on updated property characteristics to “fuel” Pierce County’s computer-assisted-mass-appraisal system.

A home near

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Aug.
30th

BECK: Sharpton comments the height of hypocrisy

Al Sharpton poked fun at the Glenn Beck rally in Washington, D.C., saying some participants were the same ones who used to call civil rights leaders troublemakers (TNT, 8-29). And this is a comment from a man who revels in traveling around the country causing trouble.

Just how does Sharpton know those attending the Beck rally ever called civil rights leaders troublemakers? Is it likely some of those attending Sharpton’s counter rally are the same ones who stood in the polling places wearing paramilitary garb and displaying clubs to intimidate those they disagreed with?

For Sharpton to call anyone a

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