From the Times Free Press: "Alexander resists GOP, backs pollution rules" (June 16).
What refreshing news! Accurate or not, it is the impression of people I talk to that most members of Congress vote as they are ordered to by party leaders, not according to their own analyses of issues. If this is true, why should we pay attention to campaign promises -- the candidate will probably do as he is told, regardless of what he thinks.
Sen. Alexander should be complimented for "breaking ranks" and ignoring a $400,000 TV attack by voting to support stricter pollution controls on coal-fired power plants. This is a vote in favor of our health and economic future. If only more Congress members had this much independence we might have a better government.
As the founding chairman of the Chattanooga Food Bank, I am proud and amazed of the achievements of retiring director Clare Sawyer. When we began the Food Bank some 30 years ago, none of us could imagine the great success it has become today. It is, in my opinion, one of the very best examples of a sustainable nonprofit business. If only our first director, Bill Johnson, were still alive to see what Clare and her enthusiastic team have made of our humble beginnings. We should all be proud of this great organization and the great work they do every day for our community. Congratulations, Clare, a job well done!
JIM KENNEDY III
I am writing to encourage my friends, neighbors and fellow residents of Soddy-Daisy to vote for Bryan Hoss for judge on Aug. 2. Bryan is a man of integrity and wisdom. His commitment to his legal practice, family, friends and greater community distinguishes him from his peers.
I have had the pleasure of working with Bryan on various volunteer and community organizations in the past, where his professionalism and fair-minded, honest opinion proved invaluable. Even with a busy professional schedule, Bryan always finds the time to play an active role in the strategic planning, coordinating and management of these volunteer organizations. These actions speak very highly about Bryan's character and his levels of commitment and discipline.
I believe Bryan would be a major asset to the Soddy-Daisy community. I look forward to raising my family in a community where Judge Hoss is residing. Vote Bryan Hoss on Aug. 2.
ANDREW CARROLL, Soddy-Daisy
Walker County fails to attract many business ventures and residential development due in part to dilapidated structures. Direct costs drive so many budget decisions which, in my opinion, is short-sighted. What about other benefits?
Who looks out for Walker County children's safety when they go wandering into dangerous structures? How does the county weigh cost vs. benefit with that issue?
Which county government official really believes new businesses (and their high-paid employees) are attracted to a county that allows such a high percentage of dangerous structures to remain? Just because the county may have a lower median income than Hamilton is no reason to ignore a simple cleanup issue. We're not talking about cleaning up Chernobyl!
I would like to hear more LaFayette and Walker citizens with campaign signs proudly posted in their yards all over the county to speak their opinion, too.
WAYNE VanLANDINGHAM, Flintstone, Ga.
Where were all these deficit hawks when Bush/Cheney sponsored two unfunded wars, unfunded gifts to pharmaceutical companies in the guise of Medicare Part D, tax cuts for the obscenely wealthy in the middle of these wars, and losing 700,000 jobs a month?
There are hateful letters daily in this paper parroting distorted nonsense of sordid neo-con misinformation. They support and vote for those who would take everything from the middle class and poor to give to their filthy rich, hateful, greedy donors -- how sick. It's not the wealth; it's the vile, hateful greed. "Wealth redistribution" -- what an idiotic, childish bumper-sticker lie.
The notion that President Obama is responsible for running higher deficits due to excessive spending is a complete myth perpetuated by the GOP and its highly paid propagandists. The increases to the deficit and the national debt are due to a reduction in revenue and high unemployment caused by the Bush/Cheney/GOP recession.
Every hate group in this country is in bed with the GOP and are aided and abetted by the usual "Faux news and Limbaugh hate machine." Those lying propaganda promoters are highly paid to brainwash Americans who do not seek the truth.
ANN BENTON Signal Mountain
If Chattanooga lets Tennessee-American Water raise our water rates again someone is not doing their job. I live in Hixson, and my last bill was $99.90. The water was just $21.33 but the sewer was $60.60, sewer cleanup was $16 and tax was $1.97. Anyone can see how the actual water fee is and how out of line the sewage fee is.
I have called Hixson Utility concerning this several times for an answer. It is Tennessee-American that tells them what to charge. When they get their new increase, can you imagine what my sewer charge will be? The water is not unreasonable, but the sewer charges need to be looked into. Let's not pass the buck again.
VIRGINIA CARR, Hixson
I encourage Hamilton County voters to elect Ron Powers to the position of Session Court judge in the county election on Aug. 2. I have known Ron Powers for more than 18 years, and he is a man of integrity who is devoted to his family, church and community. Ron conducts himself in a professional manner in all walks of life. He is patient and analytical. He does not make hasty or uninformed decisions on important issues.
Today, many of those who appear in court are repeat offenders who often become habitual criminals. I know that with his broad legal experience, his commitment to doing what is right and his genuine concern for people, Ron Powers will make it his goal to encourage those who appear before him in court to seek restoration and recovery and to stop the cycle of criminal activity.
In civil litigation cases, he will be strong in his mediation and fair in his decisions. Ron Powers is the strongest and most promising candidate for Hamilton County Sessions Court judge in the Aug. 2 election.
To the photo taken by Dan Henry of those protesting prayer by remaining in their seat, love it. This message is to the individuals who sued the commissioners for praying and the group who protested prayer during a meeting: I want to let you know that you do not speak for me. I am against what you are doing in a government building.
I am a Baptist, and as long as anyone prays in Jesus' name, let them pray. If you do not want to participate in prayer, then please step out of the room. Our society is in a sad state these days. Maybe it is time we put God back in the government, back in the schools and back in the family.
It is great we live in a country that gives every person the freedom of speech. The problem is that when you stand up to speak for something that isn't changing or helping our society improve, maybe it's time to move on to a new topic. I think improving our schools is a great topic. So please don't waste my tax dollars.