published Sunday, December 16th, 2012

'End obesssion with DesJarlais' and more letters to the editor

End obesssion with DesJarlais

Here’s hoping the Times Free Press writers and editors soon will be over their obsession with Scott DesJarlais. They appear to resent the fact that he has repented of his previous evil lifestyle, when he acted out the “moral” positions of Presidents Obama and Clinton, of the Kennedys, and other heroes of the left such as Sandra Fluke.

Leading up to his election, his opposition was doing all it could to uncover this dirt and say it meant he was unqualified to represent Tennessee. Nancy Pelosi’s PAC even sent money to run ads. With breathtaking hypocrisy, they act outraged over possible abortions, one of their core values even enshrined in their party platform.

One particular Scripture seems most appropriate: “For there already has been enough time spent in doing what the pagans choose to do: carrying on in unrestrained behavior, evil desires, drunkenness, orgies, carousing, and lawless idolatry. So they are surprised that you don’t plunge with them into the same flood of wild living — and they slander you. They will give an account to the One who stands ready to judge the living and the dead." 1 Peter 4:3-5.

NATHAN SCHWENK

Spring City, Tenn.

Hospital deserves some of the blame

Concerning the pranksters, the royals, and the nurse’s suicide: I believe that the hospital has been given a pass and bears some of the responsibility. Here’s why. Over 40 years ago, I was a 22-year-old second lieutenant Army nurse working in Walter Reed’s coronary care unit. We saw a lot of VIPs. One day I got a phone call from the secretary of defense, (I won’t say which administration), asking about one of our patients. I told him I was not permitted to give out information and referred him to the Public Information Office. He became very demanding and threatened my job. It was an unpleasant situation. (Was I intimidated? Yes!) But it was an easy call for me. Walter Reed had a clear policy that no information was to be given out on VIP patients — period! I’m amazed that a hospital that cares for the royals does not seem to have such a policy in place. This nurse’s death was preventable for more reasons than one.

NANCY BISHOP

Birchwood, Tenn.

Knowles shows his dedication

I feel compelled to write concerning our Hamilton County clerk, Bill Knowles and his office. Sometimes we feel elected officials do not necessarily work hard and/or care about their job. This is not true concerning our Hamilton County clerk. I realized on Thanksgiving Day I had an issue that needed to be handled by Mr. Knowles’ office. I emailed their office on Thanksgiving and less than one hour later I got a response from Mr. Knowles personally. Needless to say, I was very surprised to get a response on Thanksgiving Day with their office closed and from Bill Knowles.

After speaking to his office on Monday and visiting his office later, I was told by two employees that Mr. Knowles works 24/7 and they were not surprised by his personal response since he feels that citizens should not have to wait for an answer when his office is involved. They also told me that Mr. Knowles leads by example and how they enjoy working in his office.

Thanks, Mr. Knowles, for your dedication to those of us in Hamilton County.

RON DELANEY

Here’s an example of USPS inefficiency

If you wonder why our U.S. Postal Service is losing money, here’s an example that may help you understand. The USPS website allows you to purchase stamps using a credit card; a convenience for those who dislike standing in line, or who may have difficulty getting to a post office.

Since all postal facilities are interconnected by modern electronic communications, you would assume that your order for, say, a roll of “Forever” first class stamps will be transmitted to your zip code’s post office, and a friendly postal service delivery person will drop the stamps in your mailbox — perhaps even the next day. But, ah, no! The stamps, destined for Chattanooga, Tenn., are sent from Kansas City, Mo., 700 miles away, via priority mail. They are handled, at a guess, by at least seven or eight postal employees along the way, at a cost far, far in excess of the revenue from this small purchase.

Without doubt there are ample bureaucratic reasons behind this Byzantine approach to marketing, but to this retired business manager who remains sensitive to waste and inefficiency, the rationale is unacceptable. And it illuminates a managerial culture which seems blind to the obvious.

BILL LAUDEMAN

Red Bank

Special education needs an advocate

I offer support for Esther Taj and for her letter Dec. 6.

Without going into any personal details, be assured that Mrs. Taj is uniquely qualified to critique the current controversy regarding special education. She served admirably and with distinction for several years as principal and resource teacher at the original Snow Hill Elementary. The fact that she held both positions concurrently in itself is remarkable.

Sadly, her plea for “a special person to work with special needs children” will go unfulfilled until this area has an organization to provide authoritative, credible advocacy and training for all aspects of special education.

Minnesota has the gold standard for such an organization. It is know as PACER Center Inc. (PACER.org)

Several previous attempts by parents to organize both locally and statewide initially showed promise to have a positive impact on special education but, for a variety of reasons, the efforts always ended in failure.

Somewhere out there is a group of dedicated parents who possess the necessary charisma, contacts and resources to establish a PACER-like organization. Until that occurs precious young lives will continue to be damaged.

H. L. FLOWERS

Harrison

Two approaches get same result

So, increasing revenue by increasing tax rates is bad for growth, but increasing revenue by cutting deductions and loopholes, by exactly the same amount, from precisely the same people, is not bad for growth. Seriously? Is there really a difference? Is that really the John Boehner position?

Sorry, I’m not buying it. To me, it sounds a lot like deciding whether to pay for my case of beer with two fives, or to use a ten instead.

What’s really going on here? Why does Boehner make this argument? Could it be that the real answer, the one no one ever says out loud, is that for every deduction or loophole the government might cut, two or three more are waiting to be uncovered? The investment world has a surprise under every rock.

It’s true that some conservative economists believe that increasing tax rates will harm growth. But who among them actually says that raising the same revenue by cutting deductions will have a different effect? Is there anyone actually standing behind Speaker Boehner’s negotiating position? Names, please.

Will you give me two fives for a ten?

ROBERT L. FAST

Democrat likes Corker’s efforts

As a lifelong Democrat, I was pleased to read Bob Corker’s statement on page A11 of the Times Free Press (Dec. 12) and to find that he is a responsible, thinking Republican. I appreciate Corker’s efforts and hope for a successful conclusion. I thank him for what he is doing for our country.

TOM CALDWELL

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NATHAN SCHWENK, if you pay attention to the character of his responses, he hasn't repented. He's just pretended to do so. Check your scripture for words on that.

BILL LAUDEMAN, in reality, you're wrong, and you'd see the same practice implemented in such stalwarts of efficiency as Amazon or Wal-Mart. See it costs more to ha people at each post office site handle that effort than it does to have a centralized location to process it, and send it out along with mail that's going out anyway.

Sorry, but you really are just showing your blindness to the reality of economics. Besides, the Post Office isn't losing money to operations, but Congressional Fiat.

ROBERT L. FAST, it's actually that they're asking for 6 ones, a five, and a 2 dollar bill.

They're not going to find enough deductions, they just want to play games with what they're doing rather than own up to the hard choices.

December 16, 2012 at 11:26 a.m.
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