Letters for May 22, 2003

Academy support
Thanks to Devanie Angel for her piece in the May 8 CN&R on the possible closing of the popular Butte Culinary Academy [“Unappetizing move,” Everybody’s business]. Besides its success as a small training restaurant that serves deliciously unique yet reasonably priced lunches, the academy has an 80-percent success rate in student placement. Of its 200-plus graduates over the years, 190 are still employed as chefs.

The community clientele of the academy hope that its sponsor, the Private Industry Council, and its landlord, CSU, Chico, can work together to continue this program. Unless CSU, Chico has a competing renter, it could lower the rent. Perhaps the academy could be housed in the former president’s mansion, which stands empty. Local restaurants that benefit from employing well-trained academy chefs could, themselves, contribute to a fund to support the program’s staying here. These are only a few of the many possible ways to keep the doors open at the Butte Culinary Academy in Chico.

Joy Scott

Academy II
I was saddened to read that Michael Iles’ Butte Culinary Academy was in danger of being shut down or moved from the Chico State campus to Oroville. The academy, sponsored by the Private Industry Council, has been a wonderful long-term success. Under chef Michael Iles, it trains many unskilled young people into skilled restaurant workers in several capacities, enabling them to acquire good jobs, especially in the local area, and becoming a showplace for the university.

This is a program with unqualified support from local business, the university, its successful graduates, and those who eat there. Let us hope that creative solutions will enable it to continue just where it has always been.

Ed Bronson

Republicrats rule
In your divisive editorial “Dàja Voodoo,” you imply that Reaganomics didn’t create jobs [CN&R May 8]. On the contrary, it created millions of jobs—for Singaporeans, Thais and Indonesians!

The last paragraph begins, “Of course, the rich own the Republican Party. They’re the very people who paid to put George W. Bush in power.” In a so-called two-party system, the implication in your editorial is that somehow the rich have nothing at all to do with the Democratic Party.

Six of the 10 richest senators are Democrats.

Leading people to believe that the Democrats are somehow better than Republicans is just plain evil.

There is only one major political party in America: the fascist Ûber Party that we call the Republicans and their socialist wing we call the Democrats. The (s)election of Hillary Clinton next year will not change things for the better. Until we eliminate the party hold on our country, we will continue to have a government of the corporate rich, by the corporate rich, and for the corporate rich.

Quentin Colgan

Whodo voodoo?
What I find interesting is that you wrote one editorial, “Memory loss,” and the other “Dàja voodoo.” The writer of “Dàja voodoo” had a memory loss. In this editorial, the writer mistakenly wrote that “George Bush the Elder, then vice president, used [the term ‘voodoo economics'] 20 years ago to describe the fiscal policies of his boss, President Ronald Reagan.” Then-Vice President George Bush never called his boss’s fiscal policies voodoo economics. He never called Ronald Reagan’s fiscal policies voodoo economics when he became president or since he left the White House. The only time George Herbert Walker Bush called Ronald Reagan’s fiscal policies voodoo economics was when he was Reagan’s opponent in the 1980 Republican primary for president. He was his opponent, not his running mate.

Using incorrect information in an attempt to discredit the fiscal policies of our current President Bush just discredits the point you are trying to make. That’s not the only memory loss you had: “Voodoo economics” worked.

Val Montague

In His hands
Under a doctrine called “sound science,” President George W. Bush ignores the U.S. Meteorological Service’s position on global warming. The reasoning points to the fact that computer modeling is not the same as verifiable evidence. Indeed, these models can only suggest that global warming will cause increasingly severe and unpredictable weather patterns.

Meanwhile, the Rev. Billy Graham tells a CBS audience of 25 million: “You don’t have to worry about the planet. Let God worry about the planet.” Then, just last week, in the Bible belt community of Moore, Okla., an awestruck man stands on the rubble of a house twice destroyed by tornadoes in the last three years, and when CBS offers him the chance of a few seconds in the national spotlight, he can only lament, “Maybe God is trying to tell us something here.”

Raymond Dion

Cheers to Enloe
If we do need a euphemism for the word “hospital,” I don’t think “health system” really rises to the level of bureaucratic incompetence. Perhaps we could descend to the level with the euphemism “ill mill.”

All of this foolishness to the contrary withstanding, I would like very much to put on a funny hat and walk the halls of Enloe Medical Center’s second floor, where I recently underwent heart surgery.

I remember many of those hard working, dedicated people by name, but all by hand touch and disposition. Cheerful and caring, they made my life as easy as possible under difficult circumstances.

And the food was great. Not Red Tavern great, but mass-cooking great.

When I am out and about again, these lovely people should hope not to encounter me; I’m just liable to hug and kiss them to smithereens.

Lou Gardner

Orchestrated effort
On behalf of the “Music Matters” group of parents, teachers, students and concerned citizens, I would like to publicly thank the five members of the Chico Unified School District Board of Education for unanimously voting to keep the elementary music program intact.

Over the past several months, many members of our community have collected signatures, attended meetings, made speeches and shared facts about the many benefits of music education in our school. It has been a collaborative effort with positive results. The support of board members for our efforts sends a clear message that music education is an important component of a well-rounded education.

To see first-hand what music can do for children, be sure to attend Spring Concerts at each school this month. You will indeed see that “Music Matters.”

Kristen Wilson