Letters for February 1, 2007

Good catch
Re “Bars & Clubs Ad” (House ad, Jan. 18):

Hope the 2007 Bars & Club Guide is edited more carefully than the advertisement on page 35 of the Jan. 18 issue, though it may be that I am so unhip that I am unaware of new “suppliments.”

Mike Greenan

Unquestionable qualifications
Although Hillary Clinton and Barak Obama think that they have all the necessary qualifications to be President of the United States, I wish to emphatically disagree. It should be obvious to anyone with the least historical perspective that America is not going to vote for anyone as short as Clinton or as skinny as Obama. While it is true that there have been such exceptions as the diminutive James Madison and the sometimes excessively thin John Kennedy and Abraham Lincoln, this is a different country now. The anti-short and anti-too-thin constituencies will surely express themselves in 2008.

You may have heard that “you can’t be too rich or too thin,” but this was not said about presidents—at least the part about being thin. And you may have spotted the recent research concluding that tall people are smarter than smaller ones. They may have ignored Albert Einstein, Milton Friedman and thousands of brilliant short Asians and Jewish grandmothers, but their findings surely must be reckoned with. So why bother to even hold the Democratic primaries in 2008?

Richard Siegel

Corrupt elections
Are we ever going to get an election in the local government that is not paid and bought off by outside interest? You want proof? Look at the races in the last city elections in Sparks. It took $74,000 for the mayor in Sparks to beat me, and none of it was his own money! Most of it came from Lazy 8/Peppermill Casino, any surprise there? In his own words, Mike Carrigan said he had to get money from the same group to buy his way back into office! If either of these gentlemen had any manhood left in them, they would accept a challenge for a new election right now with no money involved! A 30-day window to run a race and that all of the media gives everyone at least a 15-minute spot on their TV, radio, newspaper and talk shows! But we already know neither candidate wants to lose their job or risk it on a challenge.

Gene Newhall

Hook doesn’t add up
Re “It’s about the message” (Right Hook, Jan. 25):

Mike Lafferty, your guardian of fiscal responsibility, was a little off in last week’s column. If Harry Reid had spent $124,513 per vote in the 2004 election, he would have only received 61. Actually, Harry got 494,744 more votes than that.

Fred Hinners

Fair isn’t equitable
Re “Reform thyself” (News, Jan. 25):

How ironic that a story about the perceived unfairness of media fails to mention that Sen. Bernard Sanders is the lone socialist in the U.S. Senate, representing Vermont. And where are the Republicans and traditionalists at this conference on fairness? Were they not invited? How is it that progressives cling to this outdated concept of the “fairness doctrine,” which only applies to radio and television? Don’t we have hundreds of cable and satellite stations from which to get differing opinions? And “news” has become a commodity which the savvy consumer must examine through the prism of various sources. If the left is angry about conglomerate ownership, will they really enact a law that creates “fairness” in the realm of the print media—two newspapers in each metropolis with opposing viewpoints, or will that be left to the free market, which they find so reprehensible in the electronic media?

“Fairness” is such a relative term, isn’t it? There was a time when the left used to say, “I disagree with what you say, but I defend to the death your right to say it.” But now, Neo-liberals—well, just look at all the “angst” from your readers about Mike Lafferty being in your newspaper.

Bill Thibault

Editor’s note: Sen. Sanders is a socialist, but he didn’t run as one. He was elected as an independent candidate, not on a party line.

Follow the money
Let me see if I have this right: The public schools have teachers who can read a student essay and assign one of 13 fair and duly considered grades [F+ or F- is almost never given] to said essay. The grades from said essays are very important to the student, as they determine things like what college the student might go to and if a scholarship is a practical goal. The public schools also have administrators who seem to think they need more money to combat school violence. Perhaps the public school teachers and/or public school administrators can tell me why teachers who are so skilled that they can determine much of a student’s future by reading an essay can’t determine, from the same essay, that the student who wrote the essay is violent and dangerous. I think I have an answer coming as my status as a Reno homeowner means that I pay the public school teachers and the public school administrators.

AJ Bima