Letters for October 11, 2012

Get a wax job and a thong

Re “Diamonds, cash and tats” by Matthew W. Urner (SN&R 15 Minutes, September 27):

Wow. Just when you think our culture couldn’t get any dumber, along comes Irish Cash to prove it’s actually hit rock bottom. This guy takes the cake.

As a woman, I couldn’t be more repulsed, not by his body art, but by his frighteningly shallow mentality, which includes the complete objectivity of women. His ego, which obviously rules him, is driven by the need to prove his manliness in no uncertain terms. I’m somewhat relieved to read that he drops his “professional” persona while raising his son, but concerned for his son as he matures into his own person. What if his son discovers he’d rather love other men and do hair for a living? If so, I wonder if it might be an expression of a part of his father that the latter has worked so hard to repress and hide.

For Halloween, I suggest Irish get a Brazilian wax job and wear a gold lamé thong to get in touch with his exploited female side.

Susan McKinney
Nevada City

Progressive case against Measure U

Re “The $28-million question” by Nick Miller (SN&R Frontlines, October 4):

It’s not just anti-tax and chamber-of-commerce types that oppose Measure U. Progressives should, too.

Measure U is a regressive sales tax. That means that poor and middle-income families will pay the same rate as Sacramento’s wealthiest citizens, essentially subsidizing the rich for services that we all receive.

According to Citizens for Tax Justice, since seniors, students and low-income families spend most of their money on essentials, a sales tax hits them the hardest. Measure U will cost these families hundreds of dollars and require a larger chunk of their income than it does of the rich. It’s a reverse-Robin Hood policy. And it’s why none of the statewide ballot measures that seek to increase school funding is exclusively a sales-tax hike. The governor’s proposal (Proposition 30) to balance the budget relies heavily on progressive taxation (where the wealthy pay a higher percentage).

I would like to think that most of Sacramento’s city council members know this. They just chose to ignore it. Instead, they spent $40,000 of taxpayer money on a political poll to tell them which type of tax was the easiest to pass—not which tax was the fairest or would produce the most stable level of revenue for the city, just the one that would sell at the polls.

Furthermore, this tax increase—which would make Sacramento’s sales tax the highest in the region—does not guarantee more human services, more funding for programs to reduce homelessness or even more community safety. The $28 million in additional revenue (which, at best, is a huge guess given that retail sales will likely be driven out of the city because of its high tax rate) can be put toward anything that the city council wants, whether it be arena studies or pay increases for city management.

Voters should scrap Measure U. It’s time we sent a message to the city council that Sacramento citizens want accountability and responsibility in tax policy and budgeting.

Steven Maviglio

Breton and soup

Re “Blown away” by Cosmo Garvin (SN&R Bites, October 4):

If [The Sacramento Bee] put up a notice (or more likely, in the Bee’s case, a pop-up) on their pay-wall page that said the money will be used to fire Marcos Breton and make sure he becomes homeless so that he will now be in the homeless population’s “unforgiving sights,” I think the Bee’s online subscriptions would skyrocket.

I like the line “afflicting the afflicted and comforting the comfortable.” I wonder how I could turn those words into a poster? Or maybe that should be Breton’s voice-mail message?

The only thing that makes me sicker than Campbell’s Soup is now knowing that they didn’t pay property taxes. Thanks, city of Sacramento. Looks like the soup isn’t the only thing going down the drain.

Noah Kameyer

Taxed too much already

Re “Yes on 30!” (SN&R Editorial, October 4):

Simply put, I’m voting against Proposition 30, because we are already taxed too much sales tax. Yes, there is a valid argument for an income-tax increase for the higher earners, but that should have been a separate voting measure.

Herbert Holeman

More of the same

Re “Undivided” by Todd Walton (SN&R Essay, October 4):

Spot-on! Most people have a frail grasp on the big picture and support the status quo, I’m afraid.

Thank you for your brilliant essay! Einstein said [that] insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result—like voting for a Republicrat, again. On to empire. More bread and circuses, please.

Steven Wood

Higher metaphors

Re “Name calling” by Ngaio Bealum (SN&R The 420, October 4):

Really enjoyed the apples-to-cannabis metaphor.

Alyse Yerby
via email

Problem was play, not production

Re “Creepy as hell” by Maxwell McKee (SN&R Stage, September 20):

As a writer, I found flaws with the story rather than the acting. I believe that to properly critique any piece of work, you need to focus more on craft, not content. If you can’t properly separate the two, then you shouldn’t try giving criticism, because it won’t be helpful to the actors, director, etc.

The content of this play was intense, dark and layered. But the way in which the director and the playwright have tackled the subject matter should be commended. The challenge of portraying a pedophile comes in making him human enough for the audience to empathize with. Not an easy task for an actor or audience member to relate to a story like this, but the director did a good job of slowing it down so I could process it.

Losing sympathy for the main character makes it hard to continue with that character for the rest of the story. I consider this a fault in the storytelling, not the directing. Yet, this play made me really ponder the humanity of the people we as a society consider monsters. And I’m glad I went to see it, because it’s always interesting to see what the other side has to say.

Sarah Boutwell