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Opinion

  • Buy American cars

    to offset auto bailout

    I wonder how many engaged in the domestic automobile industry are driving domestic cars. If all who are not now doing so would convert to their own product it would strengthen their job considerably.

    If the taxpayers who are about to bail out American car manufacturers bought domestics maybe their contribution to any bailout would be less.

    Don Pixley

    Ocala

    Who cares about

    the little people?

  • In taking a look at our president-elect’s appointments you are first struck by all the familiar names, so many of them old-time President Bill Clinton cronies and recycled Washington insiders. You wonder if the president-elect’s transition committee just couldn’t find anyone who isn’t a beltway has-been.

  • Lockheed, the world’s largest "defense" contractor which in 2007 sold $41.8 billion worth of weapons throughout the world, needs $500,000 from Florida taxpayers to expand its capacity in Ocala to "ramp up" production of the Hellfire precision-guided missile that has been used widely in Iraq and Afghanistan to rain death and destruction not only on enemy tanks and installations but also upon thousands of helpless people who happen to get in the way.

  • Can Obama clean up

    the conservative mess?

    It took President Clinton eight years to clean up the Reagan-Bush mess that he inherited. He left office leaving the new Bush with a fantastic surplus. So what happens?

    These “new” business-oriented conservative Republicans came in and practically destroyed our country. They lied us into a no-win, no way out war.

  • Have you talked directly to your bank corporation lately? How about your insurance corporation, your telephone corporation, your investment corporation or your credit card corporation?

    “Silly,” you say? You are right. Corporations have no ears, no tongue, and no bodily functions. They do have relatives and offspring, however. They’re called holding companies and subsidiary corporations.

  • As we approach the holidays, it seems that our understanding of a tradition may be about to end and it is heartbreaking. The down and dirty of it is that as grandchildren get older, they are less inclined to accept the fantasies that we, the grandparents weave for them in the expectation that they will be children forever — at least in our minds.

  • “It came to me in a dream!

    I’ll protect the aquifer!”

     

  • According to President Bush the world financial crisis was in no way caused by free market economic policy. History doesn’t support the president’s belief. Our current crisis is a repetition of many other periods of abuse of economic freedom, most memorably the Great Depression.

    Capitalism is successful when economic and political freedom are mutually supportive. Institutional responsibility and political protection of the individual freedoms set forth in our Constitution are both necessary.

  • Can scientists

    find a hate gene?

    Who is looking for the hate gene? Surely, since we have the DNA double helix available, someone must be looking for the hate gene!

  • “Half the people I know are below average.”

  • When Marion County held special ceremonies this week to unveil some big generators at the Baseline Landfill, they acted like it was a big deal.

    It was.

    With a nation that puts some 80 percent of our garbage in our landfills – and those landfills reaching capacity – community leaders with vision are looking for new ways to solve the problem.

  • Recently, a friend mused and asked if the good old days were really that good.

    There’s no easy answer. Comparing what has been to what is depends on where one is coming from and which priorities were set. 

    Hope would be at the top of the list if we didn’t recognize it.

    Can anyone recall growing up with anything but positive prospects for the future?

    Your writer’s birth country was embroiled in war and her adopted country stepped in to help win it.

  • It was once easier to remember Pearl Harbor Day because Dec. 7 was far enough from Christmas that the holiday hubbub had not begun. Like other traditions, it is customary to interview survivors of the “day of infamy” for the issue on or near that anniversary. But the commercial side of Christmas gets an earlier start each season and those survivors are much harder to find. It was 67 years ago and even a 17-year-old serviceman would be 84 by now – and they had to first live through World War II.

  • How many generations

    will pay for this meltdown?

    The default of the quasi stocks and bonds cooked up by investment banks and Wall Street for their real estate interests was the trigger for our current economic collapse. But at the end of 2007 several other record-setting factors were also pulling at its seams.

    Home mortgage debt was $11.1 trillion. Consumer debt for credit cards, autos, student and personal loans was $2.6 trillion. One in every 35 households declared bankruptcy.

  • Congress has been running around in circles since it handed $700 billion in bailout money to one man, Henry Paulson. The proposal was originally supposed to prop up the crumbling mortgage market that was in a crisis mode, but when he didn’t move funds timely to the banks, they started to buy up other banks and increase dividends to their investors, give employee raises and executives bonuses, instead of loaning the money out to citizens they were supposed to help. There were no strings attached to the funds so it was legal what the banks were doing.

  • Our fascination with newspapers began when there were 2,500 dailies and six times that many weeklies in the U.S. Our attachment was instant and has obviously persisted.

    National fascination with newspapers predates even Benjamin Franklin and his Pennsylvania Gazette, which began publication in 1730. The Pony Express carried papers across the continent to illiterate pioneers, who would gather ‘round to hear someone read the news.

  • “It’s not hard to meet expenses...

    they’re everywhere!”

  • Regarding the great motorcar company bailouts; to start with, Chrysler has made it clear that it no longer intends to manufacture its own and intends to import Chinese cars; nothing for them. The general public is so-so about GM’s Detroit “bombs” over the years and wondered if they would ever get their act together. If one has read Delorean’s book about GM, it leaves no doubt about their inability to understand the marketplace and respond to it.

  • A pundit remarked recently that the president looked quite contrite, agreeable and almost worthy of sympathy. Yes we would all like to think he has experienced redemption and, in his new iteration, come to the awareness that he had made mistakes and is truly apologetic and that from now on, we will find a new, gentler Bush.

    Don’t count on it. Bush is a good ole’ get even boy from the Lee Atwater mode: Anything goes to achieve desired ends. The entire family is that way, including sweet mother.

  • Sometimes we are chided by our readers for something we did or didn’t do. Most of the time it’s only a comment or two; on occasion there are a number of calls – and a few lengthy conversations.

    We try to learn something from all writers of e- and regular mail and the telephone callers. And once in a while,  we realize a common thread in those discourses is something we should have addressed.