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Everybody's column

Clinton administration loosened restrictions

I am getting very tired of people telling me that I am entitled to my opinion, especially when I am stating a fact. It is a fact that the Clinton administration loosened the restrictions on lending and mortgage institutions that have led to our current crisis. It is a fact that within the past two years, the Bush administration has tried to reinstate restrictions on these institutions but was blocked by liberal Democrats. Now Barack Obama and his supporters are trying to put all the blame for this crisis on President Bush and the conservatives, and that is just not true.

When are our elected officials going to stop playing the blame game and take responsibility for the mess our economy is in? Both parties are at fault because they are all too busy playing partisan politics to get anything done. Both parties keep accusing the other of not sticking to the issues while they both continue to employ smear tactics in their ads. The only people who are taking the brunt of our politicians' inability to work together and having to make all the sacrifices are the hard-working taxpayers.

If our elected officials do not agree to put their partisan politics aside and work together for the common good, then you can rest assured of this fact: A house divided must fall.

William L. Herby



Wealthy are bailed out while little guy suffers

I am writing to congratulate our two branches of government for acting so rapidly on the Wall Street bailout. Wow! What a class act. Wall Street obtained its money within a week. Democrats and Republicans were falling all over each other in a united bipartisan action to save the economic health of our nation. Hurrah!

Now, what about us, the paying citizen, who has to pay the bills for our own physical health? What about our health care? If I am not mistaken, Congress and presidents have been considering universal health care coverage since the Truman administration. Why is this taking so long? Oh, I remember, it's socialism.

Then what do you call a $700 billion bailout to Wall Street in order that the wealthy get wealthier? I hope that our government exudes more savior heroism toward us, the people. After all, we pay the bills.

Frank Leli



Media should treat candidates equally

Call me an overly sensitive conservative, but The News' bias is showing. The Oct. 4 "In the Headlines" section had two very different treatments of stories about the current political candidates.

The article about Sarah Palin's tax returns spent 30 percent of its space chastising her for releasing her returns on a weekend -- "a time long used to reveal embarrassing details." What embarrassing details? When Joe Biden released his returns on a Friday, was there a similar statement in the story about him? No.

Then we get to hear about Barack Obama buying his wife some roses. How nice. The writer even helpfully explains that forgetting how long they are married is "understandable since they've spent most of the last year apart." It couldn't possibly be a character flaw.

I know these are Associated Press stories, but they are in The News. In the future perhaps the editors should separate stories like this by a few pages so it isn't so obvious.

Paul M. Halsey



Let's implement plans to conserve lake water

Today, we celebrate as the Great Lakes ecosystem receives historic protection. The John G. Shedd Aquarium applauds Congress and President Bush for passing and signing the Great Lakes Water Resources Compact into law, which protects these magnificent yet vulnerable waters.

The compact ensures the world's largest freshwater resource is sustainably managed and used; protecting the water supply that 42 million people now use with clean, fresh drinking water every day, and ensuring that our children inherit a plentiful resource for their future.

Clearly this is one pivotal step, but the passage of this compact is just the beginning. Now is the time for our Great Lakes leaders and communities to roll up their sleeves and swiftly develop and implement water-conserving actions for which the compact calls.

Shedd Aquarium's Great Lakes conservation program inspires people to take individual action on behalf of the lakes. Visit for tips about how you can get started in the effort to help our waters.

Melanie Napoleon

Great Lakes Conservation Director

John G. Shedd Aquarium


Writer distorts the facts on Obama's gun stance

The Oct. 6 letter regarding the rights of gun owners mirrors exactly what our country is suffering from: Too many of us are totally incapable of putting our country ahead of our selfish and petty interests. The writer fails to demonstrate what benefits America as a whole has gained from irresponsible wholesale gun ownership, and totally distorts the facts of Barack Obama's thoughts regarding responsible gun ownership, not guns unlimited.

As we all know the senseless killing and maiming brought about by the proliferation of all manner of guns affects the citizens of this country in our day-to-day life more and more every year -- in our schools, in our streets, in the pubs and, yes, even in our homes. Our policemen are being shot at with increasing frequency because someone feels the thrill of power holding a gun in hand.

And yet the writer finds that one of his many freedoms is being threatened. It seems to me that if he wants to shoot his gun so badly, he can go to Iraq.

Anthony Christodoulo

Town of Tonawanda


Neither Obama, Palin is qualified for position

In its editorial of Oct. 4, The News accurately judges Sarah Palin to be, at this point, unqualified for the office of vice president. That is clear to anyone who reflects upon her candidacy in a nonpartisan manner. Unfortunately for The News, it has not approached this presidential campaign in a nonpartisan manner, or else the editors would have come to the same accurate conclusion about the presidential candidacy of Barack Obama. His lack of accomplishment in both domestic and foreign policy, from the Illinois State Senate to his brief stint in the U.S. Senate, is obvious to anyone who reflects upon his candidacy in a nonpartisan manner.

If The News were legitimate, it would choose to support neither of the two main candidates for president this year. Both the Democratic and Republican tickets are seriously flawed and include four candidates about whom any clear-headed voter should have serious doubts. To claim that one ticket or the other is clearly more qualified or better prepared to lead than the other is nonsense.

Terrence Henry


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