Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor for Sept. 28

Kingsbury is wrong on isthmus

We need a change in our City Council.

Stephen Buxbaum is running for the seat now held by Jeff Kingsbury. While Kingsbury is a great addition to the city of Olympia in his contribution of art, his views on development are detrimental to the best interests of the future of our community.

Tall buildings on the waterfront isthmus would be an eyesore forever and would severely diminish the beauty of our town.

Stephen Buxbaum is a capable and wise citizen, and would be a fine choice for the seat. Let’s do this right.


Work to preserve Capitol Lake

Capitol Lake is a thing of beauty. It is an artistic work, designed to enhance the Capitol Campus’ beauty. It’s a marvelous enrichment to Olympia enjoyed daily by hundreds of seniors, children and families during a lovely walk, run or jog around the lake. Works of art should not be destroyed.

Artistic expression and the creation of beauty represent the pinnacle of human achievement, the very essence of humanity at its highest level of development. There are those who would destroy our lovely Capitol Lake.

Would any serious consideration be given to spray-painting Michelangelo’s work on the ceiling of Sistine Chapel in order to return it to its natural state? At one time, Michelangelo’s statue, David, existed in its natural form as a mere block of marble. Should David be destroyed as well? For the same silly reason?

My friends, it is time for action. Write to General Administration now. They are seeking public comment. The barbarians are at the gate and the vandals among us. Take action now to save this work of art in the midst of our capital community.

Please note that the incremental cost to taxpayers to maintain the existing lake is, in fact, zero. Zero new cost as compared to millions it would cost for destruction.

The Deschutes River will always carry spoils downstream that will need to be dredged at some location. This is not a new, or additional cost simply because the state has failed to maintain the lake in recent years.


We've seen time of hatefulness before

When Jackie Robinson broke baseball’s color barrier, angry people screamed that the national pastime was doomed.

In the 1960s, anger erupted because of the fear of change embodied in the civil rights and women’s liberation movements.

Change seems to create fear – making people susceptible to misinformation and emotional appeals.

Sean Hannity and Glenn Beck lament that this is not the America in which they grew up. I am grateful that it is not.

The America that I grew up in was segregated and I could be punished as a female college student if I wore pants on campus. McCarthyism turned Americans against one another in search of Communist conspiracies and political assassinations were too common.

So, I am amazed when I see people who, like me, grew up during those tumultuous decades repeating history.

Baseball did not end because Jackie Robinson played in the major leagues. Parents and grandparents delight in their daughters having opportunities for education and careers that were once denied them. Change is not a conspiracy, but often it improves our lives.

By listening to and participating in the current conspiracy arguments, we have become pawns in a narrative that isn’t based on facts or fairness. Those of us who have lived through previous periods of hatefulness in the United States should know better that to contribute to its rise again.


Congress created clunkers program

A recent letter writer to The Olympian made a number of statements that may deserve the epithet of Rep. Joe Wilson. I don’t have the space available to debunk them all so I’ll address just a few.

The “Cash for Clunkers” program was not a program of the Obama administration but rather the initiative of Congress and Rep. Betty Sutton of Ohio as a way to use a portion of the already approved stimulus money to quickly help Main Street.

Contrary to the writer’s statement, no income tax is owed on the rebate since the legislation specified there is no taxable gain.

Social Security and Medicare were called “bankrupt.”

This is a common error. Both programs collect more in revenue than they spend. That is hardly the definition of bankrupt.

Yes, as baby boomers like me go on, their rolls both will need more funds; Medicare sooner than Social Security which is why health care reform, not just insurance reform, is essential.

Medicare is riding on a broken medical cost structure that has to be fixed. Social Security is stable for decades and even in the worst case scenario will have at least 75 percent of expected benefits. If you don’t believe me, see page 88 of the October issue of “Money” magazine: “Can I count on Social Security to be there? You can.”

A package of relatively painless adjustments will keep Social Security fully funded and continue to keep millions of senior citizens out of poverty.