After eight years of the Bush Administration, its time for those who often blindly marched in lock step behind George W. Bush to look at what his policies got us.
Our country is literally crumbling around us. Bridges and levees are failing; our electrical grid is inadequate; our schools are often decrepit buildings with leaking roofs and plaster falling down; and the No Child Left Behind act is leaving plenty of children behind.
A recent report card of our infrastructure netted almost all ‘Ds‘, which includes our nations water, roads, mass transit, rails, and more.
Jobs are being lost at a staggering rate. Last year alone over one million jobs lost; just last week over 145,000 jobs lost; poverty and foreclosures are rising everyday; more people are in need of food stamps than ever before.
Were spending $10 billion a month on Bushs war of choice, total cost thus far: $593 billion; our environment has been totally neglected; climate change was ignored; 48 million citizens do not have access to health care; millions have lost their life savings and pensions; the redistribution of wealth from our once-strong middle class to the already obscenely wealthy folks at the top 1%; witness Wall Street handing out $18 billion in bonuses to its CEOs in December, despite the taxpayers bailing the companies out in September 08.
Our national debt when Bush took office in 2000 was $5 trillion; the amount Obama inherited: over $10.5 trillion. In 2000 Bush inherited a budget surplus of $230 billion, while Obama is inheriting a budget deficit of $1.2 trillion in 2009, all created under Bushs watch.
Bushs war and his let-Wall-Street-go-wild attitude have bankrupted this country. This crushing debt of $10.5 trillion and expected budget deficit of $ 1.2 trillion is far more a national security risk than any terrorist.
Bush and Treasury Secretary Paulson pulled off the greatest heist of all time in September, 2008, with a simple six-page plan to give Paulson over $800 billion to hand out to the failing Wall Street banks and other corporations, with no transparency, restrictions or accountability.
Now, its a new day. We have a new President. Hes inheriting the biggest crisis ever handed over from one administration to another. What does the GOP and its talking head Rush Limbaugh do? Good ole‘ patriot Limbaugh is hoping Obama and his plan FAIL.
Like a bunch of zombies, every single Republican congressman voted just as Limbaugh directed. This, after Obama sincerely reached out to Republicans and has been appointing them to posts in his administration. On top of this, some items were removed from the stimulus package, or put in, per Republican requests!
America is in a crisis. We no longer have the luxury of behaving like adolescents via partisanship. Do conservatives want a plan to save America to fail, as GOP spokesman Rush Limbaugh wishes?
Karen Martin Cheboygan
GOP‘s war on workers
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act is meant to stimulate and invest in the economy. Americans voted for green infrastructure jobs, health care, education, tax cuts for the working class, middle class, and small businesses. Those are our values and where our money should be spent.
The Republican war on working Americans has cost three million jobs so far. Bushs tax cuts did not work for us! Republicans are playing games while thousands of workers are daily losing jobs, homes, and health care. Bill passage is extremely urgent. Please contact your legislators today to vote yes. Use www.senate.gov and www.house.gov.
Regarding the recent article on high definition (HD) radio and Roy Henderson, I would like to offer some facts, figures and thoughts. Sentences within quotation marks are taken verbatim from the article:
Three years ago, Henderson went toe-to-toe against the popular WTCM-FM when he turned WLDR 101.9-FM into a country station.
My records show that prior to switching from adult contemporary to country, WLDR-FM was hovering around a 7 share in the Arbitron radio ratings when the property was owned by Don Wiitala.
But, from the Arbitron ratings figures for the Traverse City-Petoskey market for Fall 2007, WLDR-FM went to a 4.0 share for country music.
The point here being that Roy basically blew up a fairly successful adult contemporary radio format that was familiar, having been around for decades, for a tiny slice of the country pie.
Note that WTCM-FM/WBCM-FM, WTCM-AM, (Midwestern Broadcasting properties owned by Ross Biederman) combine for a total 19.5 share of the radio listening market. This is a huge number in the biz.
Ive been in contact with acquaintances in the radio broadcasting industry and from what I gather, high definition radio is not popular yet; nor does it pique much interest in the way that iPods, Blackberries or Wii have in recent years. Ive yet to hear or see ads touting the benefits of HD radio. HD receivers are widely available, but owing to the economic climate, purchasing one is not at the top of a radio listeners must have list.
So heres the challenge: converting folks over to HD radio. Im going out on a limb here but I dont think the casual radio listener cares a great deal about high-tech equipment like HD radio, and if they do, they already subscribe to satellite radio.
And if there are no demonstrations so that the listening audience can compare sound quality between regular radio and HD radio, then whats the sense in socking a half a million dollars into an untested entity, particularly if engaging programming content isnt there?
Remember when AM stereo was going to be the next big thing in radio? Broadcasters cited superior sound quality, even better than FM radio, greater stereo separation, smaller, more portable listening devices. Know what happened? Listened to AM stereo on your radio lately? Thought so.
In the next article, perhaps the author could ask Roy Henderson why hes not streaming programming on the Internet? Why his stations dont have websites, like most stations do? Why no e-mail contacts?
You can put lipstick on a pig, but its still lipstick.
Mark Staycer TC
Please note, the beautiful gown on the cover of Jan. 26‘s Express was courtesy of the Petoskey Bridal Salon.