Reader Mail

Bush Out-Foxed

Base is ready to bash Bush and his balancing act. Plus: Boobies in paradise. Lonely is the legal alien. Pretty Prius. Plus much more.

5.17.06

Send to Kindle

CROSS BORDERS
Re: John Tabin's Bush's Balancing Act:

Regarding Bush's immigration speech last night, as described in "Bush's Balancing Act" -- it was just what I expected from a President who seems absolutely determined to go on treating his party's base as a bunch of dumb hayseeds who can rolled one more time.

Who does he and his rich friends in both parties think they are fooling? It is just another amnesty, as usual, with worthless public relations promises to secure the borders. The amnesty will, of course, accomplish nothing, just like the one in 1986, except to encourage even more illegals to enter the U.S. -- plus their families and other relatives.

It is quite obvious that our rich sneering elites in both parties love illegal immigration, and that they will keep it going no matter what.

At least the speech wasn't as bad as Senator Bill "I'll surrender to anyone" Frist, and his proposal that he floated recently for a "virtual fence" -- electric eyes and infrared cameras.

Can't you just imagine Frist and other political titans conferring on this? Hey, what we shall we call the camera idea -- almost fence, electronic barrier -- no wait, we need to stick the word "fence" in somewhere, to roll the rubes -- I know! "Virtual fence"! Hey, the dumb peons will go for that! A perfect answer!

I notice he hasn't used the phrase since then -- I assume it went over like a lead balloon.

I also notice that the Wall Street Journal is being careful not to repeat its earlier proposals for a Constitutional amendment -- "There shall be open borders."

That's what our wonderful elites really want.
-- John Lockwood
Washington, D.C.

As much as I enjoyed Mr. Tabin's column I feel I have to add a few things.

My impression of the President's speech was that his heart isn't in it. His proposals were all very nice sounding but I think it really misses the point. I hope I'm proved wrong. The problem isn't in the Congress, although it looks like the Senate is doing everything they can to make it worse. The problem is in the Executive branch.

We have a group of civilian border watchers (the Minutemen) judging their efforts and they aren't impressed. If the President was serious about border enforcement he would have the government enter in to a partnership with the Minutemen rather than have the border patrol supervisors doing everything they can to thwart them. Any debate about the border that doesn't include the civilian man on the spot will be missing part of the big picture. In any case the President is responsible for results.

The President also talked about the need for a temporary worker program. Fine, make it impossible to become a citizen without beginning at their country of origin. Tell the world that anyone not registered in some way will be forever barred from the U.S. citizenship for them and their family. Then set a time limit, such as July 1, 2005. Anyone not in the system by that time will never be in system, they will be deported. Every law abiding, productive, hard working guest will be happy to sign up.

Employers of illegal aliens should be subject to an I.R.S. audit and pay all taxes that should have been withheld (assuming at least minimum wage) including penalties. If their books are in order you can believe that they didn't know what they were doing. Any congressman who calls the border patrol or INS trying to influence them to not enforce the law should be censured.
-- Jeffrey Ring
Lorton, Virginia

As a rancher I tend to think more simply than the President. Our life is defined by caring for the cattle that are ours. We need to provide feed for them, water to drink, and territory marked by fences to both keep them safe and to keep them from the highway where passing cars might hit them and injure folks. So, it is that shortly after we went to war I began to wonder about our nation, its borders, and who was here. This might have had more impact because of a son who became an Air Force pilot following after his Dad an Army helicopter pilot.

Knowing the extent terrorists will go to obtain their ends, that being our subjection or death, I am quite supportive of the reasons we entered this war. Our family had first hand contact with terrorists while we served in Germany in the 1980s. After that my view of good and evil was much clearer when said terrorists tried to kidnap our three children. Knowing that terrorists will use any end to win their war against the U.S., and that if they win we lose the way of life forever we know and love so well, I knew that this war had to be won.

But what still amazes me is the view from the Beltway. I guess it shouldn't surprise me as we once lived there and I know first hand how folks there look at issues in one way while the American public sees it a totally different manner. I am convinced we need to limit how much time those elected representatives need to be in that city...no more than six weeks a year, as they lose their way and forget whom they serve.

The President needs to review lessons learned from ranching. As a rancher he knows he must have a fence around his ranch to keep out predators and keep in cattle. A similar view should be held in his caretaking of the American people. We want protection. I don't want to have sent my only son to a war far away and find that a terrorist crossed our border and planted a bomb here in the United States. The President also knows that he provides feed only for the cattle that reside on his ranch. No rancher in his right mind would buy feed for all the ranches around Crawford. First, they couldn't afford to and secondly it is the responsibility of other ranchers to provide for their own cattle. Mr. President, tell this to Vicente Fox.

Life is much simpler when you live on a ranch. I don't mean to say it is easier but that we define it by what we need to do to make our ranch work. We are responsible for that which is in our care. Mr. President this is true of you as well. Secure our borders. We cannot say it more simply. And, while you are at it do as my mother told me when I had a big task ahead of me....start and stay with it and you will get it done. Get busy using the laws on the books and create a society that adheres to laws. Begin sending back the illegals now one at a time. If they want to come here they must come legally. We are tired of providing hospital service for free. Our schools are overrun with illegals and we are tired of paying taxes for those here illegally. Trust me the American people are rising up and telling all elected leaders this.

We are the most generous people in the world. We give and give and volunteer and give some more. But we are past weary with providing for all the illegals. It is time to take care of business. We will vote in any party that will get the job done. We are not sending our sons and daughters to fight away from home just so we can be overrun here. Hear us now, please.

If any folks in Washington cannot figure out what we elected them for please send them for summer vacation to work on my ranch. I will teach them about building fences, tending to cattle, and enjoying sunshine and outdoors. I might even throw in fishing in the lake for free. And I guaranty that if they step in cow manure here I will teach them how to clean it off their boots. Heck, I'll even use the cattle prod on them for free. It might help them use good sense. After all, that is why we elected them.
-- Beverly Gunn
East Texas Rancher, Proud military mom and wife

This speech was a joke and an insult. He used the word URGENT about getting border under control. Give me a break. Urgent is doing something in his first term, not six years into it. There was nothing new in this speech other than the token National Guard. This is just to try and get thru November elections. We do not need NEW laws; just enforce the ones already on the books. We do not have to round all illegals up and ship them home, just stop giving them my tax dollars in the form of schooling, health care and welfare. When they apply for any of these services they should have to show that they are here legally. Enforcement is really a no brainier, start fining the employers that hire illegals.

Now is the time to get tough with Mexico and stop treating them as friends, a friend does not come into your house uninvited and Fox acts like America is just an extension of Mexico and Bush is helping him.

I understand the business leaders want the cheap slave labor, but they are keeping the wages low for everyone.

I think it was Rush yesterday talking about how we got the port deal stopped, but the Senate is not listening to us now. Well I can tell you why...FOLLOW THE MONEY. Business gives bundles of money to the Senators and they want cheap slave labor and our Senators are falling all over themselves to give it to them.

ILLEGAL means a law has been broken and nothing should be given to these people that the first thing they do in our country is break a law. I don't care what you want to call it, anything that lets them become citizens without going home and going thru the process is AMNESTY.
-- Elaine Kyle

Is there really any way of handling this situation? I regret saying it but I'm getting more pessimistic everyday. As long as Mexico itself is such a third world mess with woeful leadership a solution seems remote. It also angers me when we are lectured about our prejudice against "brown peoples." I remember my brother telling me about visiting border plants of a large U.S. corporation some years ago and he would observe the undernourished Indians working on the plant floor (actually there was no floor in the sense we know just dirt) and the well-fed Spanish descendents in the offices as managers. But at least the Indians were taking home paychecks to their huts something they were not doing before. The U.S. companies would explain somewhat defensibly that the Mexican government would only let them improve conditions for the workers on a gradual incremental basis. At the risk of offending our ever offended "hate America crowd," perhaps we should just make Mexico a U.S. territory and administer it as such. A recipe for disaster? Perhaps, but it couldn't be governed any worse than it is now as it appears possible it will elect a socialist government this year.
-- Jack Wheatley
Royal Oak, Michigan

Bush is now treating us as we would expect to be treated by Democrats -- making a meaningless, sham proposal that amounts to nothing of consequence. He spent more time talking about "guest workers" and "path to citizenship" than he did about enforcement. He said nothing about building a secure, permanent physical barrier.

Bush appears contemptuous of the majority of Americans that consider secure borders and reducing illegal entry to be important. Without a more formidable physical barrier across our entire southern frontier, short-term deployments of the National Guard are nothing other than window dressing and hollow pandering.

Rewarding those who come illegally and allowing them to bring family members who consume large amounts of government services is stupid. Watching elected Republicans try to outdo the Democrats' pandering to create and attract large numbers of potential new voters is sickening.

Elected officials of both parties are not only turning their backs upon, but spitting in the faces of, their base constituencies. The President is now clearly among them.

If the Democrats take control of the House in the coming election, their first order of business will be to impeach George W. Bush. Should that happen, I will do as much to defend Bush then as he is doing now to secure our southern border now -- absolutely nothing.
-- Steve Fernandez
St. Louis County, Missouri

First, about the military on the border. Let's clear out some of the smoke. Not one single Guardsman will make one single arrest of an illegal alien. Not one single Guardsman will participate in any way in the detention of a single illegal alien. They will all be support troops and paper pushers. It is anticipated that they will be Guardsman fulfilling their annual two-week training commitment. They will each need (presumably) a couple of days of training, thus leaving roughly a week and a half to do their supporting and paper pushing. This can be expected to put additional burdens on Border Patrol resources to orient the Guardsmen, and thus will take away from their own actual border enforcement activities.

Second, how are we supposed to believe that a federal bureaucracy that can not even keep track of the illegal aliens here now, will suddenly know who is in the country and whether they are terrorists, narco traffickers, MS-13 members, or simple good folks that only want a job to support their families. This is simply ludicrous. Homeland Security, and that twit Chertoff, has shown that they can not find their butts with both hands. Oh, and Gen. Myers little girl, with zero actual law enforcement experience, is the perfect person to put in charge of the Border Enforcement effort and personnel, right?

As for holding the employers to account for their hires, the laws have been on the books for years. I have seen no serious prosecutions during the Bush presidency. I have seen no one go to jail for hiring illegal aliens at the expense of American citizens. I have seen articles about businesses on the Gulf Coast with government contracts sending American workers home because "the Mexicans are here now." So much for that Katrina boondoggle. Now I am supposed to believe that Bush and his attorney general (a Texas Hispanic) are going to uphold the law. Piffle!

As regards assimilation, the illegals have no intention of assimilating. As for learning English, the courts will assure that all govt. levels are mandated to provide their services in Spanish and a multiplicity of other languages.

I seriously resent being played for a fool by the very politicians that I helped put in office. I am also sick and tired of Bush being called a conservative. That is pure bovine excrement. It also should be noted that the politician that insists on adamantly keeping to the middle of the road, is destined to be run over by the traffic in both directions. If Bush doesn't thoroughly demonstrate that principle, I don't know who could.

VIVA LA BUSH -- VIVA LA FOX -- MI AMIGOS FOREVER -- RECONQUISTE IS NOW
-- Ken Shreve

It's one thing that George Herbert Walker Bush was pantsed by Dan Rostenkowski and the Democrats. It's quite another thing when George W. Bush gets pantsed by Vicente Fox.

Do the honorable thing, "W," and resign.
-- Jack Hughes
Chicago, Illinois

FORBIDDEN FRUIT
Re: Yale Kramer's Paradise Regained:

Love it. Great article
-- Ed Fortini

Yale Kramer's "Paradise Regained" in yesterday's TAS served as an excellent metaphor for the left's penchant for romanticizing all things non-Western -- without the benefit of any critical thought. When the left reflects on everything from American Indians to African Tribespeople, they attach a patina of pastoral nobility and serenity that is simply not the case. Native people in most of the world lived short lives that were devoted to a brutal struggle to feed, house, and dress themselves, not to mention protect themselves from neighboring rivals who would kill them or enslave them. In many cases, women were, as Dr. Kramer points out, treated as dispensable chattel, doomed to a life of manual and birthing labor.

Many on the left, primarily city dwellers with no direct real experience, anthropomorphize animals as benign beings who only yearn to lie in the sun and coexist with their fellow creatures. One afternoon on the farm or in the woods would prove that animals too must struggle to exist and that struggle is neither serene nor nonviolent.

It is an article of faith in the liberal world that the earth was a virtual Garden of Eden until European white males profaned it and spoiled it with their religions, imperialism, pollution and war. Editors of the NYT -- and the people who believe them -- would do well to remember that Western culture has transformed the world with its contributions to medicine, industry, agriculture and democracy. All cultures are not equivalent. Spend a week with the Masai, the Inuit, the Bedouin, or the Nukak and see if primitive non-Western cultures are worth celebrating.
-- Deane Fish
Altamont, New York

Regarding Yale Kramer's excellent article on the current (dismal) state of the New York Times editorial page, I noticed a glaring error made by Mr. Kramer in the third paragraph. Adam and Eve DID NOT eat "forbidden fruit from the tree of sexual knowledge." This phrase appears nowhere in the book of Genesis.

Per the account of this incident in the book of Genesis from the New International Version of the Bible, the scripture is as follows:

"The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it. And the LORD God commanded the man, "You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will certainly die."

The same incident is recorded in the King James version of the Bible in the following manner:

"And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die."

In Genesis 22-24, we see that God explicitly created Eve to be Adam's companion well before they fell from Grace and were expelled from the garden:

Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.
The man said, "This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called 'woman,' for she was taken out of man."
For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.

The man and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame.


The difference between ""forbidden fruit from the tree of sexual knowledge" and "the tree of the knowledge of good and evil" is critical, and has nothing to do with semantics. It matters.
-- Gavin Valle
Peapack, New Jersey

I have a quick but important quibble with Mr. Kramer's otherwise excellent and hilarious article: Adam and Eve got kicked out of Eden for eating the forbidden fruit from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, not the tree of sexual knowledge, as alleged.

There were two trees in the Garden of Eden: the Tree of Life and the aforementioned Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. It was the latter from which they could not eat. Sexual knowledge, while not a tree, was sanctioned by God in Genesis Chapter 2. The Fall of Man, which had everything to do with pride and nothing whatsoever to do with sexual knowledge, is detailed in Genesis Chapter 3. Among the consequences of the Fall mankind was no longer allowed to partake from other tree, the Tree of Life.

It is an illogical conceit of popular culture that the Bible teaches that God, the very creator of sexual knowledge, was or is opposed to its practice between a man and his wife. It is a further illogical conceit of Hollywood and the framers of the "Sexual Revolution" that it was they alone in history of humankind who discovered sex, not the two sole nekkid inhabitants of the Earth, alone in an idyllic setting, with not a whole lot to do other than name things, and with the specific instruction from God to have at it. (Or words to that effect; see Genesis 2:24.)
-- R. Trotter

Wlady, more from this cat, if possible. He nearly killed me with this.
-- Ken Watson

WELCOME HOME
Re: Yuri Mamchur's I'm Not Illegal:

I am a legal immigrant to Canada and I concur with the figures in Mr. Mamchur's article, as well as the continuing confusion in the information handed out to applicants. For example, I was informed that my interview (scheduled for Detroit -- I was living in Atlanta at the time) would be the following year -- I rented a small apartment and took a long-term contract job on the strength of this, and promptly received a directive two months later to appear for the interview. Travel and time off of a week's duration, plus lost wages of course, for a 15-minute interview that I passed, and then home to pay to break my lease and travel to Canada for job interviews (Canada requires you to have a job and a place to live if you come in legally -- if you come in illegally they will provide you a place to live and give you generous welfare and free health care to boot) and engineer my move over Christmas.

But the process of visa application and acceptance is an expensive and difficult exercise including the gathering of a banker's box full of paperwork, a lot of travel, and a good immigration lawyer which will run you $450 per hour plus disbursements. Or you can just appear at the border and claim refugee status and get a nice package of goodies for the next five years minimum, plus now you get $100 per month per child under 6 that you produce during that time.

Given the choice of taking two years and paying $20,000 or simply strolling across the border and applying for the goodie basket, which would the average foreigner choose?

Incidentally, when New York State had a crackdown on illegal immigrants during the Carter hostage crisis, the vast majority of people they busted were Canadians and Irish. And at present the people that are being busted in Canada are Portuguese. Go figure.
-- Kate Shaw
Toronto, Ontario

Make that man a citizen! These are the kind of people we WANT in this country...
-- Paul

WASTED EFFORT
Re: Jed Babbin's The Producers of Intelligence:

After reading Jed Babbin's latest column, I could only wonder why conservatives went to all that trouble to vote in 2004, because it looks like John F. Kerry was the real winner after all. He didn't get into the White House himself, but his policies sure as hell did, and they don't look much like coming out, either. It really makes me wonder why liberals hate Bush so much, when the people with the most to complain about are the poor saps who voted for him.
-- Christopher H.
Canberra, Australia

I'm so disillusioned by the administration's failure to prosecute the leakers, and otherwise defend itself against the relentless partisan attacks, that I'm on the verge of calling it quits. Very depressing, isn't it.
-- Meredith Weaver (Esq.)
Somerset, Pennsylvania

ACCOUNTING FOR OIL PROFITS
Re: Terry Druffel's letter (under "Ben's Oil") in Reader Mail's Life Can Be a Cadillac:

Terry Druffel asked for help with oil company "record profits" and, being an accountant and holding an economics degree, I'll be happy to oblige.

Terry asked, "Isn't a company's profit determined by subtracting the cost of producing a product from the revenue generated by selling the product?" Yes Terry, very good. Exxon posted an $8.4 billion profit in the first quarter. This was on $89 billion in sales, less than 10 percent. Not a very large margin for a business that big. And by big I mean in context with other industries operating in the world like Wal-Mart.

But Exxon and other U.S. oil companies are just pebbles on a large beach compared to the gigantic world market of oil run by nations like Saudi Arabia, etc. And those record profits (compared only to their past performance) are taxed and most plowed back into capital to keep production of oil products flowing (gasoline being just a slice of the oil pie).

As a percentage of sales their profit hasn't changed much even when a barrel of oil was $28 and gasoline was closer to $1.25 a gallon. The key element in the larger numbers is demand which is also at record highs. Even at $3 a gallon the demand has yet to curb and will be just as strong this summer as any. Also, the usage from transportation (hauling of goods, airlines, etc.) is growing as the economy keeps booming. All those consumer goods don't travel by rail any longer.

If you are looking for a boogey man to put blame on, Terry, try government. Since 1977 the entire profits of all U.S. oil companies dwarf the over $1.34 trillion taken in federal and state fuel taxes. Then there is the over regulation of the industry that hasn't allowed a refinery to be built in over 30 years not to mention more drilling and more nuclear power plants. All of which would increase the supply of energy currently generated by the use of oil. Natural gas regulation also curbs its usage and thus we use more oil. And back to the consumer and the demand for low price things that are packaged more and more in plastic (lighter than glass and close to aluminum) and the increasing use of plastics in manufacturing which requires more oil. Add the exploding economies of 3 billion Chinese and Indians coming out of third and second world status that add to demand.

It's simple Terry. Don't look at the dollar figure of the profits and whine. Look at the totality of the industry and its product and go back to the simple economic principles of supply and demand. Increase the supply and the price will drop. Lower the demand and the price will drop. Create alternative sources of products from oil (electricity for example) and the price will drop. Allow the markets to work without ridiculous government control and the price will drop.
-- Greg Barnard
Franklin, Tennessee

O'REILLY WATCHERS UNITE
Re: Ben Stein's Stop the Scapegoating:

Your article on rising oil prices is a joke.

What do you mean, don't blame the oil companies. Take a good look at the record profits the oil companies are making and the huge salaries their executives are making and the wages they are offering to employees to work for them in this booming oil market, and tell me the oil companies are not doing what they can to push the prices higher.

Open your eyes man!
-- unsigned

FUEL SIPPERS
Re: Reader Mail's Life Can Be a Cadillac regarding Lawrence Henry's The Real Cost of Driving:

Your correspondents who sing the praises of small, imported, semi-electric cars that look like Scotch-tape dispensers overlook another important point in their favor: the more that people drive those fuel-sippers, the lower the price of gas for my manly Chevy Trailblazer and my lovely wife's cute lil' Jeep Liberty.

To such folk I say, buy more Priuses! Drive them everywhere! Be proud! Beep your horns and wave at each other! You're not just helping stop global warming -- you're helping millions of real Americans afford our large, safe, comfortable trucks.
-- Doug Welty
Arlington, Virginia

NOT FOR THE MARKET
Re: Lawrence Henry's The Real Cost of Driving:

The economics of cars and their operational cost are always as confusing as trying to figure out why Ted Kennedy still has a driver's license. If I apply the overall cost of my 1989 Honda Accord with 168,000 miles on it, its life to date maintenance cost and mpg cost for fuel, most Toyota Prius owners will never recoup the "premium" they paid for the technology they bought in less than a decade of normal driving. A new four-cylinder Accord has a comparable purchase cost to the Prius but otherwise the comparison ends there. One battery swap out will erase all the fuel savings for two decades of driving. In effect the tax credit you receive is a down payment on the battery swap out and disposal charge coming down the pike. I drive an average 10,000 miles a year and my Honda's average mpg for life is 30 mpg. It gets up to 40 on the road or 33% over the EPA rating at the time. Based on my experience with new cars, they have a hard time reaching their rated mpg and the Prius is no exception to this. The Prius or Honda Civic Hybrid can not haul the number of people or cargo my Accord can. To compare them is an Apple to Orange comparison and most people in this country drive an Accord sized car or larger.

As for saving the "planet," in the early- to mid-'90s Honda produced a 92 hp VX Civic that got 50 mpg on the highway everyday of the week. A friend of mine is on his second with over 370,000 miles on it. His per mileage cost makes my numbers look pretty lame and that of a Prius ridiculous by comparison. Honda quit producing that car because it was made to be efficient above all else meaning it was light weight (and a bit noisy) and the EPA complained about one of its pollution numbers. One of its numbers per gallon of gas was higher than say the H2 Hummer for example which burns five times the gallons per mile but that didn't matter to the EPA from what I heard. When my friend bought his 1996 VX it cost him $12,000 and was the cheapest Civic in the line up. Neither the Toyota Prius or the Honda Hybrid is on his list as a replacement simply because they carry a price premium that is out of line with what they deliver and both carry a down the road hidden operational cost factor that makes $3.00 a gallon gas look cheap by comparison. My friend didn't buy the VX to save the "planet"; he bought it to drive a lot of miles because he wanted to move his family out of the "City" but he still had to work there. His VX sees at least 30,000 miles a year and burns more gas than I do. I suspect most Prius and Civic Hybrid owners have a similar reasoning and actually burn a lot of gas and miles together.

So while I don't think this will be the end all to Car Economics 101, never the less as long as this new technology has the pocket book economics it does, this technology is going to find itself limited to niche markets where money is not a limiting factor and the statement is more important than the result. Places like College Campuses, political campaigns for President come to mind. If Honda produced an updated VX or the follow on HX today, the Hybrids would take a substantial hit because they have comparable mpg figures and don't require the optional pedal kit to travel in mountainous regions or the hidden charge (equal to the cost of replacing the engine by some estimates) to replace the batteries every so often. Same economics keep high performance diesels out of our pickup trucks and SUVs. In the normal workings of a free market it is the early adaptors that pay for the development cost of new technologies that the rest of us benefit from down the road. These Hybrids tend to buck that trend as those that can afford to do otherwise are doing so. Honda has found that out with its high end Accord Hybrid. Perhaps if John Kerry had promised to get a hybrid version of his Gulf Stream jet or yacht that might have made the right statement to the rest of us.

I'm not suggesting that Hybrids don't have a place or that those that buy them have made the wrong decision but we need to be intellectually honest about what these Hybrids are and aren't. First off they are economy cars in size but carry the purchase price tags of mid sized cars. Second, they are all underpowered with the exception of the Accord which maintained it normal V6 engine and high price. Third, their actual highway mileage is not that much better than a similar gas powered version of the same car and their biggest boost in mileage comes with in town start and stop driving where they are competing with Mass Transit in effect for cost factors. They lose there too. Regardless of what the cost of gas goes to, a gas electric hybrid and the gas only version will have similar per mile cost over their life time even if you exclude the purchase price differences and battery replacement cost every four-to-six years. When you compare like vehicles, the hybrid cost factors make it a long term loser at today's cost of purchase alone. Pocket book economics will win every time and until some manufacturer can deliver better performance at a comparable "economy car" cost over their life time, the hybrids will remain a small portion of the market. Paying more for less just does not appeal to the masses.
-- Thom Bateman
Newport News, Virginia

ON DISAGREEMENT
Re: "Concerned Citizen's" letter ("Praise, Not Criticism") in Reader Mail's Langley Long Gone and Ben Stein's Missed Tributes:

In "Praise, Not Criticism," Concerned Citizen takes issue with Stein's approach, because Stein disagreed with some Hollywood people and complained about what they failed to do. Apparently Mr. Stein failed the Sweetness and Light standard.

So what was CC's approach? To disagree with Stein and complain about what he failed to do!

Certainly it is always useful to hatch a good idea and advocate for it, but isn't it also useful, occasionally, to point out what is bad or wrong and explain why? Stein did it. CC did it too. Is CC disagreeing with and complaining about himself?
-- Scott Clarke
Florence, Oregon

Like this Article

Print this Article

Print Article