Ryan, Boehner better than foes
I am responding to the letter Aug. 16 criticizing the Aug. 14 Free Press editorial "Ryan's disappointing reality." I could not agree more. Why don't you just endorse Obama and be done with it? Ryan or Boehner at their worst is much better than anything the opposition has to offer.
I have considered canceling my subscription, and this may be the tipping point. This is the first time I have written to the editor, but it may not be the last.
Reagan fortified Law of the Sea
The editorial "Drown the Law of the Sea" (Aug. 11) does not recognize how President Reagan, in fact, strengthened the Law of the Sea treaty -- which would immediately increase U.S. sovereignty by giving America exclusive sovereign commercial rights to the full U.S. outer continental shelf.
President Reagan urged changes that granted the United States a permanent seat and permanent veto power on the council that governs seabed mining, and he held out for amendments that specifically eliminated technology and revenue-sharing mandates.
His changes were effectively addressed, and they explain why a long and distinguished list of former Reagan officials -- including The Honorable John Negroponte, former Chief of Naval Operations Vern Clark, former Secretary of Defense and Sen. Bill Cohen, and former Coast Guard Commandant and Deputy Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security Jim Loy -- have all publicly set the record straight about President Reagan's work to ensure the treaty favored America.
With President Reagan's efforts and all living former U.S. presidents supporting Law of the Sea ratification, the Senate must act without delay.
Old Republican Party is gone
The Republican Party should no longer be called such. With the selection of Paul Ryan as Mitt Romney's choice for vice president, the old Republican Party that practiced considered compromise and moderation is now officially dead.
The tea party, which knew better than to attempt a real third party, succeeded in co-opting the Republican Party. With fear-mongering, distortion and lies as its tools in trade, it has, in very few years, managed to rise to significant new political heights.
Although I hate to reiterate the oft-quoted cliché, "the stakes have never been greater," there may be truth to it. That roughly half the nation's voters will vote Republican remains baffling to me. Some will vote because they do not realize what has happened to their party. Others seemingly vote against their own best interest, which remains ever puzzling. Others will vote, thinking they are swimming away from the shark only to be swallowed by the whale.
In an age when it is difficult to discern fact from fiction, horse pucky from roses, one thing is clear to me ... the wealth pushed, tea-party driven "Republican" agenda is one that will only bring more pain to 98 percent of the country, while bringing more gain to the 2 percent.
JEFF CAMPBELL, Lookout Mountain
Sisk best choice for Catoosa sheriff
I have found Gary Sisk to be a humble, gracious man who has earned and retained the respect and admiration of both the Catoosa County sheriff deputies he has led and the sheriff under which he has served. He listens with empathy and reacts to injustice with tempered, steadfast and logical responses.
Gary believes in accepting the community's help and leveraging their collective gifts to try and steer young people away from trouble early, catch them quickly if they get in trouble, and finally have community leaders mentor them going forward to show them there is more to life than crime and jail.
His opponent, Larry Black, is a big concern. He seems to think of himself in much the same way New York Mayor Bloomberg does. Prone to illustrating his "superior ideas" by exerting his authority, Black easily dismisses open carry as though it is a crime and not lawful. When any public official can speak a lawful right into exile because they are uncomfortable, I would submit we are on track for big trouble. Catoosa County, Gary needs us and we need him. Vote for him Tuesday for Catoosa County sheriff.
CHUCK BACHA, Ringgold, Ga.
Comcast needs to do line work
Attn: Comcast: our cable line has been down since July 5. We have reported it down on July 7, 13, 20, 23, 31 and Aug. 2 and 14.
We have cable down across our drive and a dozen on hold to work on our driveway and yard. We have a grandchild we have to keep away from the lines.
What does it take to get Comcast to do their line work and to give us back our yard?
HOUSTON AND SUE CULVER, Sale Creek, Tenn.
Give Iranians a deadline
The uncertainty of Iranian intent for its obvious, and freely admitted, nuclear development program is daily news as the U.N. struggles with unearthing their every move and determining how much Israel, the Middle East and the rest of the developed world should worry. Maybe the wrong people are doing the job. Maybe it is not a technical question at all.
Let's look at it this way. If their intent is to develop a domestic source for electric power and medical materials, why bury the development under a mountain and keep everybody out? Why not put it on the surface and invite every capable contributor to come in and help? That would save Iran tons of time and money, plus create an international team of nuclear experts for ongoing support.
As it stands now, their visible actions tell us all we need to know. Why can't we simply give the Iranians a date and time when we and/or Israel will, with the consent of most major nations, close the openings to their underground workshops so they can get their people out? Or if they refuse, which is most likely, announce nothing and implement the contingency plans I hope we have in place
Demand disclosure from candidates
A letter asked the question "How is it that a person can come to the pubic asking them for a job, but will not disclose information that will help evaluate the person for the job?"
His question is absolutely dead-on correct and fundamental for any job.
People must demand that candidates provide personal information so we can determine who is best qualified for a government position. The Congress of the United States must bend to the will of the people and enforce the absolute necessity for having this information.
The people of Hamilton County, Tenn., and the United States must join together and in one mighty voice demand that this information be required before a person can be elected. We need birth certificates, school records, Selective Service registrations, passports, unusual trips, explanations for gifts and special deals and any questionable arrangements as well as federal tax returns.
Let's shine the light of truth on anyone running for public office and leave no stone unturned. Join in demanding complete disclosure by the candidates, or take their name off the ballot!
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