Require everyone to test emissions
A recent letter condemned the Hamilton County enforcement of the auto emissions standards as oppressive to poor people.
I can understand the writer's point of view, because for poor people, many who can only afford older cars, the cost of repairs is a serious dent in the budget. However, poverty does not excuse failing to follow the law.
The real problem is twofold: first, the law needs to be metrowide, if not nationwide. Unless forced to do so, many polluters thumb their nose at society and selfishly refuse to fix their catalytic converters and other exhaust parts, forcing the rest of us to breathe their toxic fumes.
All vehicles should be examined annually and owners held responsible for emissions quality.
Second, like free spay and neuter programs for pets, we need an emissions repair program that will assist the poor to cover such costs, as they are for the good of the general society.
GARY FURMAN, Rossville, Ga.
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We got along fine not knowing pay
I personally do not give a whit to know the pay of TVA workers and other area public employees, considering it being none of my business.
We, the people, got on with our lives through time since the signing of the Constitution without bothering to know the salaries of public and/or government leaders; that is, before the forming of the ACLU, instigating powers of "never-thought-of rights," albeit the protection of these rights alluding decisions from the U.S. Supreme Court.
Then came the rioting, political tea parties and Occupying.
MARTHA HAGAN, East Ridge
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Current president is the smartest guy
As I watch the carnival called the Republican primary, I can't help but think how sad it is that our country has gotten to the state we are in.
But I can see why we are in such sad shape. Watching the Republican primary debates, with a pompous windbag, pandering and pontificating, a former governor (product of the 1 percent/silver spoon) spewing platitudes written by his minions, a religious zealot who wants to bust the Constitution with regard to separation between church and state ... I see no way to go on this road.
It seems there's one man worthy of leading who has not or will not sell his soul, but whose time has passed because of age.
I voted for Obama in the last election. Why? I'm an independent, and I might have considered voting for McCain. But there's no way on earth I could/would take the chance on Sarah Palin being a heartbeat away from the top spot.
Guess I'll have to vote for Obama again ... unless Ron Paul gets the nomination. I feel comfortable with that.
I think we should all vote for the smartest guy in the room. That would be our current president.
TIM ENGEL, Hixson
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Spending at times comes in handy
Be careful what you wish for, congressman.
Seems like that "Socialist Big Government Spending" comes in handy sometimes. And it might just lead to both needed infrastructure repair and create jobs right here in the 3rd District.
Who can blame the president for not sending money your way?
He certainly doesn't want you to compromise your principles. You can't have it both ways.
To quote you on your government spending freeze bill:
"This bill is a continuation of my promise to the 3rd District to fight against a large federal government and for less government spending. I kept that promise my first year in Congress and will continue to do so this year." -- Congressman (Chuck) Fleischmann introduces 2012 Spending Freeze Bill.
Perhaps throwing tea in the "crumbling Chickamauga Lock" would be a more appropriate act for the congressman and his fellow anti-government GOP primary opponents than bellyaching about the government.
And next time, sir, I suggest you wear a Revolutionary War patriot hat rather than a hard hat.
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President has role in oil prices
When is the media going to wake up and realize that the president does have a major part in high oil prices? Stop blaming the oil companies and everyone else, etc.
It is very simple. As we keep spending and going in debt and the feds keep printing more money, etc., the U.S. dollar is actually being devalued by the oil supply countries.
So say that last year, we paid $1 for a "barrel" of oil and now that dollar is only worth 75 cents. Now you will have to pay about $1.33 for that "same barrel."
That is the real part that our president and Congress and the news media are not talking about.
Keep up the spending and printing. Next we will be paying $10 for a loaf of bread or a quart of milk.
Do not believe me? Go grocery shopping in Europe.
GENE HAY, Hixson
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1944 commerce ruling is faulty
Section 8 -- Powers of Congress: "To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes."
In 1944, The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Wickard v. Filburn that regulation of commerce meant the federal government could dictate how much wheat a farmer could grow. They argued that if he had not grown the wheat he would have bought it on the market and this would affect interstate trade. This is true, but the original intent was to prevent trade wars among the states.
Consider that if the interstate commerce clause allows Congress to regulate how much wheat an American farmer can grow, then it must be that Congress can also regulate how much wheat a farmer in a foreign nation can grow. There is no distinction in the commerce clause.
Legal precedent is defined as "an already decided decision which furnishes the basis for later cases involving similar facts and issues."
Binding precedent means a lower court must honor findings of law made by a higher court.
The Supreme Court is not a lower court and not bound by precedent. Wickard v. Filburn is a faulty ruling and must be overturned.
BERT LOFTMAN, Jasper, Ga.
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Develop models to train parents
I hear a lot about parents needing to take back their power and somehow, magically, discipline their child.
What's missing with such a statement is how parents must themselves have models for appropriate behavior and social niceties.
If they don't, and so often they do not, I or anyone including the schools cannot expect behaviors appropriate to the place, in this case the school building. For many kids, the loss of those models is critical and impacts that child's future as a citizen and a contributor.
Can we do something about it? The simple answer is yes, we can, but some other thinking must be put in place, and the only place that can really happen is the school.
Why not develop parental models; parental training early in a child's early experiences to the school? Why not develop parental advisory boards that can assist with the development of "how to be an effective parent?"
That 4- or 5-year-old child just beginning the school experience also is the very best time from a developmental standpoint to effectively serve as a change agent.
Could this be done inexpensively? You betcha! What is the cost of incarceration? Isn't that number, in dollars, more then $25k per year?
ROBERT J. BROOKS
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