In the noose
About your Aug. 3 editorial, “Another defeat for progressives”: The editorial states that “we have a new breed of Republican now.” Unfortunately the Dems don't get it, and they keep giving the GOP rope to hang the Dems with. Once their heads are in the noose, the Dems make bad deals and say they had no choice, and they blame the voters for not coming to cut them down before they were forced to deal.
Then they resume giving the Republicans more rope -- as with the debt ceiling.
The GOP was in a corner on the Ryan budget plan, but the Dems let the GOP manufacture a crisis out of what was heretofore a routine matter, and soon nobody was talking about Ryan.
Part of the problem is Obama's insistence on compromise. But as we have seen, compromising with intransigent people who are wrong means that you end up with half-ass solutions. Appeasing today's breed of Republican isn't just another defeat for progressives; it's a defeat for the country.
Dan Jacobs, Mira Mesa
Ruled by the car
When it comes to cars and city planning, you only need to travel outside the U.S.A. to see how backwards we are as a country. Cars rule our lives. We're whores to oil -- the ultimate tail wagging the dog. If we can't get there by car, then good lord, how will we get where we're going?
If cars are a problem in Balboa Park [“Editorial,” July 13; “Letters,” Aug. 10 and 17], then by all means let's spend money we don't have, sit through months of meetings, tear things apart, maybe even build a go-around bridge to bypass the museums. And if we want to ban cars from the plaza on the Prado then, my god, where the heck will we put them? I mean, it's a nightmare! What are we to do? Dig down? Build a high-rise lot? Gather signatures and put a bond measure on the ballot?
Hey, if someone needs to get into the park that badly, especially when it's busy, then they can walk (but it's so strenuous!), or they can ride a bike (but it's so dangerous!), or they can take the No. 7 bus and walk into the park (but it's a whole block or two!), or they can take a cab (but they don't speak English and it's eight bucks from downtown!), or they can just stay home and check it all out on the internet. I mean, really. Come on. We're wasting all this time trying to figure out what to do about cars?
Ban the cars where they need to, open it up and make it more pedestrian- and bicycle-friendly and be done with it. If someone is so lazy and feels that inconvenienced about accessing one of the most beautiful parks in the city because they can't drive right up to the Organ Pavilion and park out front, then they have bigger problems.
Be creative, walk a little and get out and smell the roses -- literally.
Why does every problem always require months of planning, millions of dollars and endless construction? Can we please move on to other more important issues plaguing this fine city -- like how we're going to finish building that new library that we can't afford?
Tom Lombardo, Hillcrest
Better things to do
Regarding your Aug. 10 news story “Cock blocked,” about Matthew Hess' efforts to get circumcision banned: While I applaud Hess' passion for keeping the cock intact, he and the many like him could better serve man by engaging their energy in public education that informs without offending.
We certainly don't need our otherwise-ineffective state and federal legislatures to pass yet another law telling us what we cannot do. Such a law would serve little value beyond glorifying those who want to have their way.
There are a lot more pains that our boys will face down the road than the simple snip of the tip. Perhaps we should encourage our lawmakers to work on them and allow parents to decide the “MGM” issue for themselves.
Terry Kovarik, Azalea Park