-- Larry Karp, Atlanta
Picture worth a prize
Thank you to Hal Crowther and CL for this most excellent article on Kirk Varnedoe ("A fine disregard," July 15). I noticed on the website it appeared on the cover in every CL city (Atlanta, Charlotte and Tampa). It deserved it. The article had everything you expect from exceptional journalism. Not that I'm a prize buff, but CL and Crowther deserve some sort of award/recognition (are there Pulitzers for weeklies?).
-- Evan Levy, Atlanta
I laughed so hard that I scared my cats when I read the caption under the Asian fest photo (Scene & Herd, "Friday night is all right for fighting," July 15). That brand of chopsticks has been known as "cultuals" in my family for as long as I can remember. It's nice to know that someone else appreciates the absurdity as much as I do. Keep up the glonous work.
-- Andy Travis, Atlanta
No good at it
Why do conservatives hate America (Headcase, "Colin, Dick and Jack," July 15)? Indeed, why?
Another question you might pose, or not, is that with all the experiences conservatives have had, all the cradle-to-the-grave coaching and play-acting they've endured, and all the "gul-durn hard work" they have put into hating America, they are still miserably, if not pitifully, bad at it. I mean, really, to go from being a commanding general in the U.S. Army and Secretary of State of the United States of America to being a prancing cheer-boy onstage. Who the hell WOULDN'T think, at the very least, that would appear a tad frivolous, if not wholly inane, in the light of the fact the NATION IS AT WAR?
Who would even toss a second thought regarding the actions of the man who is "a heartbeat away from the presidency" of the U.S. of A when he, at a public gathering of colleagues, uses such terms as "Fuck off" or "Go fuck yourself" in anger toward a fellow colleague, a representative of the citizens of the nation? Who would question it?
Well, I know -- no one does. Certainly no one of any number. But even those of moderate intelligence must know that things tend to catch up with you, and if you spin a poor yarn long enough, it will certainly begin to unravel on you and fall to hell. I suppose one can hang it on arrogance, but all they can seem to master is the blustery grumble and a promise of "My big brother's gonna kick your ass."
These guys aren't even good at being these guys. Shit. I could do better. If it weren't for that durned self-respect thingy.
So it was a great question, but maybe the addendum of "... and why are they so crappy at it?" would be good.
-- William Wisdom, Ashland, Ore.
I'm wondering about this "conservative" label (Headcase, "Colin, Dick and Jack," July 15). I have always understood that conservative people were very careful about what they spent, never took undue risks, and were generally careful and cautious. Either I have been laboring under a misapprehension or these people are not conservatives. 'Pears to me they're wild-eyed radicals.
But that's just me.
-- Jean King, Winthrop, Mass.
I agree with you (Headcase, "Nixon or Bush?" July 1), especially your discussion about Reagan (NOT one of the best presidents, by far), and your passage: "It doesn't matter where you work. As media becomes more corporate, every reporter and editor feels the enormous pressure not to rock the boat and that, in turn, has caused the profession to attract less inquisitive, less aggressive types. Were it not for the Internet and its rigorous monitoring of media, I believe most of the press would even more resemble a giant house organ for the White House."
Although it's probably outdated by now, I wonder if you've read Noam Chomsky and Ed Herman's 1988 book Manufacturing Consent ... so prophetic.
-- Bill Darbyshire, Galien, Mich.
Pursuit of the enemy
Cliff Bostock: I am amazed how narrowly focused intelligent folks like you can be when a belief system is inspired, in your case quite leftist and totally anti-Bush (Headcase, "Nixon or Bush?" July 1). You parrot the statements of incredible damage the reckless President Bush has done, etc., but where is your appreciation of balanced information and reality, to which we all aspire -- or at least claim to? In this society, we have the power to grasp all the facts, data and information to make unbiased judgments.
Implicitly you call President Bush a liar, by comparing him to Nixon. As Mr. Gore said, he lied and betrayed the nation. Why, because he led us into a war under false pretenses?
Why complain about having journalism under pressure to be less aggressive? Check the facts and you don't need to follow credos and ideologues!
A reminder of realities: We are in a war! This is a real guerilla war spread over half the globe. 9/11 was the declaration of war. We have to fight it like a classical guerilla uprising: Pursue the enemy on his home turf with might and remove their support by the populace and cut off their supplies. That's how Bush fights the war. That's why we are in Afghanistan and in Iraq. Any floundering will surely bring the enemy's devastation on our society, as they avow continuously. Economic, poison or nuclear devastation. Picture death and tens of thousands injured with no place to get treated, and generations of newborns with genetic defects, poisoned agriculture and waters, dangerous for decades. That's my immediate fear, not global warming. Any of Bush's failures and faults pale in view of the dedication to his strong pursuit of the enemy.
If we receive another attack under President Kerry, he will wail, like the rest of us. I expect little else from him, such as effective battling of the Islamic terrorists.
-- Dietrich Hoecht, Clayton
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