Letters

Letters 12-14-2014

Come Together There is a time-honored war strategy known as “divide and conquer,” and never has it been more effective than now. The enemy is using it against us through television, internet and other social media. I opened a Facebook account a couple of years back to gain more entries in local contests. Since then I had fallen under its spell; I rushed into judgment on several social issues based on information found on those pages

Quiet The Phones! This weekend we attended two beautiful Christmas musical events and the enjoyment of both were significantly diminished by self-absorbed boors holding their stupid iPhones high overhead to capture extremely crucial and highly needed photos. We too own iPhones, but during a public concert we possess the decency and manners to leave them turned off and/or at home. Today’s performance, the annual Messiah Sing at Traverse City’s Central Methodist Church, was a new low: we watched as Mr. Self-Absorbed not only took several photos but then afterwards immediately posted them to his Facebook page. We were dumbfounded.

A Torturous Defense In defense of the C.I.A.’s use of torture in a mostly fruitless search for vital information, some suggest that the dire situation facing us after 9-11, justified the use of torture even at the expense of the potential loss of much of our nation’s moral authority.

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Random Thoughts

George Foster - June 19th, 2003
Hats off to Hillary and Martha
Did you ever wonder why Hillary Rodham Clinton is hated so much? With the possible exception of her husband, only Hillary could write a book that has the capacity to be savaged before it even hits the bookstores.
Many Americans will not accept that her book might be successful. People who will never read a word of it are charging that the book is a pack of lies. Right wing pundits are even accusing her publisher, Simon & Schuster, of intentionally misstating high sales figures in order to attract more buyers.
This kind of rabid criticism often comes from the same people who believe the Clintons killed Vince Foster and assorted others during an alleged Clinton murder spree over the years. Ironically, these unwitting critics may have helped spur sales for a book that has been reviewed by experts as relatively mundane.
Why is Ms. Clinton hated so much? On the surface, she should command respect for her immense talents and achievements. Highly educated, on the staff of the Senate Watergate Committee in her 20‘s, author of several best-selling books, and a successful attorney, the current Senator from New York is infinitely more accomplished than any other former first lady - and she ain‘t done yet.
The answer is obvious: Hillary Rodham Clinton is disliked because she is a woman. First Ladies have rarely had the background to advise the President on national policy issues. Most are neither smart nor ambitious enough for professional careers of their own. And of course, women are never, never to aspire to the presidency.

The public‘s reaction to Hillary Clinton might give some insight into why Martha Stewart is despised so much.
The CEO of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia is about to face significant jail if the 7-year sentence and millions charged in fines received by her friend and financial associate Sam Waksal are any indication. Stewart is charged with violation of insider trading rules when she earned $47,000 by selling stock from Waksal‘s company Imclone.
The public seems riveted with fascination at Stewart‘s freefall in worth and image. Many are downright gleeful that billions of dollars in her stock holdings of Martha Stewart Living have become a mere fraction of the original value after charges were filed.
Why do we fixate on Martha when criminal CEO‘s of World Com, Enron and other corporations are still walking free among us after bilking stockholders and pensioners out of billions? Somehow, we can‘t bring ourselves to hate them. After all, guys who play high stake financial games at the expense of others for a shot at immeasurable wealth are as American as the robber barons and Kennedys.
A woman in the same position, on the other hand, is not the same thing. Oh no. While being stridently blunt on issues is considered a refreshing quality in someone like Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, the outspokenness of Hillary Clinton on national affairs makes her seem like a bitch. The high-roller activities of Donald Trump is admirable as healthy ambition, the same quality in Martha Stewart makes her greedy. Let‘s face it, on some level we still want all women quietly subservient to men - if they are allowed to leave the home at all.
While it is unimaginable to see myself voting for Hillary Rodham Clinton as president or ever viewing Martha Stewart‘s TV show, I can‘t help but respect their moxie. Both women have stood up to their critics and refused to blink. As such, Clinton and Stewart have helped blaze the trail to allow women to compete equally in professions traditionally dominated by men.
Don‘t you think it is about time we all joined the 21st century and got used to it?




 
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