Letters for February 2, 2006

One is treasonous
“More on the hypocrisy of the Democrats” (Right Hook, Jan. 26):

Here is the difference between leaking the identity of a CIA agent and leaking the Bush Administration’s domestic spying.

Leaking the identity of Valerie Plame served one purpose: Revenge. Ambassador Wilson was critical of Bush’s rush to war. Bush’s administration sought to discredit him by leaking the fact that his wife was working for the CIA.

Leaking the truth of Bush’s domestic spying program has many purposes.

First, it sheds light on the secrecy surrounding the actions of the Bush administration.

Second, it alerts the public to the fact that the president has broken the law, ie. he has not followed the rules set forth in the law.

Finally, it demonstrates Bush’s lack of concern for civil liberties. He uses a war he created as justification for impinging on U.S. citizens’ rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution.

Mr. Lafferty, I ask that you read the 4th Amendment and the Supreme Court cases interpreting it. A lawful justification for domestic spying you will not find, though your myopia may hinder your ability to see the light.

The “slippery slope” is a clichéd argument, but once you realize the portent of the erosion of the 4th Amendment, you, too, will be scared.

Ted Chrissinger

Impeach Bush
President Bush is violating the Constitution and needs to be impeached. He claims he has the authority to conduct secret wiretaps, but the non-partisan Congressional Research Service found that the Congressional resolution passed after 9/11 did not authorize the wiretapping program and found it “unlikely” that any court would agree with the White House’s justifications. Both Republicans and Democrats believe the president may have broken the law. The White House is using lies and misdirection to trivialize widespread concern over the secret wiretapping program, and their justifications don’t stand up to the facts.

Diane Albrecht

Say it isn’t so!
“Man behind the mask” (15 Minutes, Jan. 19):

I had to laugh when I read that Frank Leto aka “Zomboo” credits Soupy Sales for his Zombo schtick. Hey, Frank, what about episode number 60 from The Munsters titled “Zombo"? May Al Lewis turn you into a toad!

Phil Davis

Down with big brother
Samuel Alito should not be approved for the Supreme Court. He would bring with him to the bench a pro “big government” agenda by supporting unchecked executive power. This is contradictory to the principles of checks and balances on which this country was founded. In Alito’s eyes the executive branch is above the law—he advocates for full immunity for executive officials who illegally spy on Americans. For example, Alito opposed Morrison v. Olson, which gave Congress the power to appoint a special counsel, which the president can’t just fire at will, to investigate presidential scandals. Any candidate who brings an agenda is counterproductive to an impartial judicial process.

Hillary Robison

Play within the rules
“Battle in the air” (News, Jan. 12):

I just read your article, and I just wanted to clear up a few facts. I also live in the Dallas/Fort Worth area and get to see the battle first hand.

Prior to the construction of DFW Airport, Dallas and Fort Worth each had smaller airports (Love Field in Dallas and Meacham Field in Fort Worth) that competed against each other. The two cities agreed to work together to build DFW and make it the one major airport for the region. The Wright Amendment was passed in 1968 to formally shut down both of these airports to any commercial air traffic. This all took place before Southwest Airlines was ever conceived.

In 1971, Southwest Airlines started service to only three cities in Texas (Dallas, San Antonio and Houston). This was fine because they were within the regulations set forth in the Wright Amendment.

Fast forward to the present. Southwest Airlines is now a major airline and wants to start long haul flights from Love Field. Here is where the problem starts. Southwest Airlines knew the rules before they ever flew their first flight out of Love Field. The rules were not changed to punish Southwest Airlines.

Love Field is located in the middle of a residential area with no room for error. (Think Chicago Midway Airport and the recent accident that Southwest was involved in). On the other hand, DFW has a large buffer zone around the airport with no residential areas.

The longest runway at Love Field is about 8,500 feet. When planes are flying long haul, they carry more fuel, and it requires more runway, and creates more noise to take off. The longest DFW runways are 14,000 feet.

When you hear Southwest complain about the Wright Amendment remember that the Amendment existed before Southwest Airlines did.

Arnold Garcia
Bedford, Texas