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Oct 13 , 2011
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Throw the crooks out!

I am aware that people are saying that the current office holders are a bunch of ineffective crooks beholding to special interest money and need to be voted out of office. Will that do any good? It seems to me that there have been some extreme changes of elected officials over the years. Remember Newt’s “Contract with America?” The GOP managed to defeat lots of Democrats, but did it change anything? Why does Newt have to propose a new contract? What happened to the old one? Eventually, the special interest money wins out and compromises even the most idealistic!

This all started with Lyndon Johnson. He wanted to have his “War on Poverty,” his war in Vietnam and a balanced budget. So he raided the Social Security Trust Fund, and they have been doing it ever since. Then he embraced civil rights. That ended the days of the Democratic “Solid South” and enabled Nixon to pursue support among former Democratic conservatives. That has now given us this fundamentalist bend in politics where people like Bachmann (from Waterloo, no less) and Rick Perry want to enact their religious beliefs into law.

It’s good to be old, and I hope I die before that disaster strikes! I was born in the first year of the Baby Boom, so my benefits are locked in so long as there is money to pay them. But what about the people who were born in the last year of the Baby Boom — 1964? They are not so lucky.

Gary Thelen

West Des Moines

Ron Paul is not the right solution

After reading both sides, I agree with John Hicks (“Your View,” Sept. 29) more than Matt Storms (Your View,” Oct. 6). We could face a lot of anarchy if Ron Paul was our president. I believe that even Ron Paul, Storms’ hero, would not fly in an airplane that had no government regulations relative to pilot licensee or plane safety.

We need government regulations in many areas.  The real question concerns the number and stiffness of these regulations. Many people, myself included, believe that if we had more, stiffer regulations dealing with Wall Street and big banks, we would not have the economic mess we have now. Think about it!

Ed Rethman

West Des Moines

Name that crime

Please help me out regarding your weekly “Name that Crime” challenge. When I’m trying to decide which one of the six crimes each of these people is potentially guilty of (but not proven), do you recommend I come to my conclusions and judgments based on gender, age or race? Or maybe there are some other criteria I haven’t yet thought of, which might be a better indicator of guilt. Perhaps, a facial deformity?

Timothy Cooper

Des Moines

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