Letters for October 2, 2003

Correction: It is not illegal to ride a bicycle on all sidewalks in Chico, as suggested in a caption to a photo accompanying last week’s essay, “A shared responsibility.” The prohibition applies only in a certain zone in the central business district downtown. We regret any inconvenience this error may have caused to readers.

Best criticism
Gee, I really thought that your [Sept. 25] cover displayed a wonderful regard for what is best in Chico. Thank you for the care that you put into that design.

Pretty little ladies with skinny waists and big tits serving the men or just looking sexy and desirable really says it all.

And of course life in a coffee shop is the true marker of Chico’s excellence.

I was completely caught off guard by the sophistication, intelligence and courage evident in your journalism. Wow. Bring it on.

What’s next? The life of an office shoe? Or maybe you will really do some research and tell us all something we are craving to know: Which of the council members are having affairs, and have any participated in orgies like our good friend Arnold Schwarzenhaggard?

Keep up the great work!

Ben Piper


Finance info for all
I am disappointed by the Chico City Council’s campaign finance reform efforts.

Dan Nguyen-Tan’s first proposal was to require recusal of councilmembers from votes in which one or more of their contributors has “a stake.” This would have been progress. Instead, the council simply voted to lower the amount of contributions to $500. Now Nguyen-Tan is asking for a ballot measure that requires councilors to “disclose” these contributions as they are preparing to vote on related business but still allows them to vote.

Currently, campaign disclosure reports are required to be filed regularly for public viewing at the City Clerk’s Office.

Unfortunately, the reports aren’t required to tell us exactly who knows who, who socializes with who, or who does business with who. It is also legal for a business to give one contribution and then for the owners or employees of that business to give their own separate contributions, all totaling well over any limit but recusing no one.

I’d suggest making these disclosure reports available on the city Web site. Every voter should see them. Now, an interested party must go to the City Clerk’s Office downtown, during working hours, to get this information. The staff is wonderful, but I’m sure they have better things to do.

Juanita Sumner

Detention for Arnold
Regarding your feature “Arnold Uncut” [CN&R cover story, Sept. 11], on No. 13, “Arnold can’t shake his reputation as a flirter and groper,” your uncredited writer states that Arnold made “female-friendly films” and cited Kindergarten Cop as an example. All I can say is you must not have stayed for the big ending! It was all movie-cop and anything but friendly.

After 70 minutes of an unlikely Arnold masquerading as a male kindergarten teacher (wonder if he was fully credentialed?) opposite a mob of ultra-cute and smarmy Hollywood moppets, he suddenly turns mega-mean to gun down a bad-guy father of one of his students. Plenty of “action": shooting, running around the hallways of a public school, and blood, of course—typical Scary-Arnold fare.

As a real male kindergarten teacher (not the nine-millimeter packing, iron-pumping, undercover kind, I guess), I really resented this inane characterization, as you can imagine. I always hoped that no parents were fooled by the title of the particular flick and let their kinder watch the violence-fest that climaxed it!

Wick Humble

Subsidy windfall
So well-heeled farmers have finagled more bucks from the feds. And as the economy emulates the Titanic, the war escalates cost-wise, and more workers are laid off to face dark certainties such as loss of homes, savings, marriages and status, Congress, the subsidized farmers’ guardian angel, hands out checks like compliments at an Ahnold fund-raiser.

Subsidies are immoral and antithetical to laissez-faire, a principle many business people say they adhere to, especially in California, where they squawk like abandoned nestlings that government is anti-business. Our proud farmers, furthermore, ignore that subsidies cause farmers in other countries to remain poor and unable to compete globally. A guaranteed income blinds one to the needs of desperate people.

In 2001, farmers, comprising less than 1 percent of California’s population, produced $30 billion in commodities, according to the Farm Bureau’s Web site. Yet many of these farmers still accepted subsidies.

Farmers, among whom I’ve lived and worked, have always cried the blues, always defamed social-service recipients (the aged, handicapped and infant children) and always complained they’re broke because of government meddling—even as they received government checks and proclaimed their patriotism. Yet as I picked their tomatoes and figs and trucked them to packing and shipping houses, I was acutely aware of their huge homes, long cars, expensive vacations and increasing political donations.

Though the rest of us don’t qualify for subsidies, we do qualify as taxpayers whose money bloats the bank accounts of many farmers.

Is this a great country or what?

Leonard Adame

Ban the buns
I have sun-bathed nude in the remote Sangre de Cristo Mountains of New Mexico, the Chugach Mountains in Alaska and many remote places in between. I learned my lesson in Pogonip National Forest of Santa Cruz, Calif. After walking a mile in, I was startled by a naked man doing yoga. He stood right in the middle of the path, giving the impression that he was some holy man doing a holy ritual. I was disgusted. I tried to ignore him and passed by while feeling his extreme need for some kind of reaction.

I wanted to get to a secluded place where I could privately do some bun-bathing. I’d been there an hour when I looked at the bushes in front of me to see a pair of eyes and that same long-blond-haired guy crouched down peeping at me. I was furious and shaken. I went to park headquarters later to report the invasion. I was told there was no law against nudity, so nothing could be done. I never went back, and I haven’t sun-bathed nude in a non-remote area, other then my own very private back yard, since.

Nudity must be banned in public areas; otherwise you’re inviting people who don’t respect others’ privacy. Get naked whenever you want, but do it in privacy, because the only naked ass I want to see is my partner’s!

L. Patterson