Andrews for mayor, unless he's sick of it

If David Andrews believes he was doing right by Town of Oro Valley and is open to discussing his tenure as town manager, then I would support his running for mayor in opposition to Paul Loomis in February.

As someone thoroughly versed in town issues, he seems a viable candidate unless, like this Oro Valley resident, the current political scene turns his stomach.

Lois Berkowitz, Oro Valley

More questions, less talk from senator at hall

Town Hall meeting Sept. 18, Church of Nazarene. The Q & A should have been two hours long.

Dear Sen. John McCain:

You should have limited the speaking crowd to 3 minutes each, instead you let people rattle on and on, it was stupid. Not enough people were allowed to ask you questions.

I do not like the way you conduct the people's business. You don't listen, you talk too much.

Sincerely yours,

Lee Ewing, Tucson

How about 'the clowns that make us cry?'

Sen. Al Melvin claims (Sept. 9) my letter to the editor (Aug. 12) has inaccuracies in it, yet he does not cite one inaccuracy.

He does, however, proceed to tell us what a mess things are among his Republican colleagues and their own governor.

He dismisses the Democrats, never allowing them to participate in the budget process. even though their proposals made more sense than the slash and burn policies of the Republicans. As long as Melvin and his Republican cohorts slavishly follow their mentor, Orville Norquist, the right wing fanatic who has elicited pledges of "No new taxes," there will be no progress in the budget process.

Melvin did not like my label of the Republican legislators as The Gang That Can't Shoot Straight, so I will offer him a new label: The Clowns That Make Us Cry.

Jim Brademas, SaddleBrooke

Too bad Marana has cancelled season camps

I feel it is very disappointing that Marana Parks and Rec has cancelled their fall, winter and spring camps.

My kids are off school for a whole week in the fall, and we used to take them to the Marana Park and Rec program where they would go on field trips, play games and have a great time. But due to budget cutbacks the program is no longer.

Now parents are left with the only other option, which is the after-school program provided through the school called LEAP. This program in my option is extremely over priced, disorganized and run by mostly unlicensed teenagers.

How is this a great alternative? I want to know what other parents are doing out there?

Carissa Urbalejo, Marana

Sorry about the petitions; great Sun City event

First, an apology to the Sun City HOA and its homeowner members.

I was collecting signatures on my candidate nomination petition to run for Oro Valley Town Council at Saturday's fair when I was informed that the HOA rules did not allow petitions of any kind. I immediately stopped. I was not aware of that and I do apologize if anyone was offended.

Second, congratulations to the event organizers. What a great turnout. Very well attended and, yes, I did buy some things while I was there.

I have always said there was a great deal of talent and real world experience in Oro Valley of all kinds, and this event was certainly a reflection of that.

Again, congratulations. I hope this fair will be repeated.

Joe Hornat, Oro Valley

The high costs of end-of-life medical care

As a member of a hospital geriatric emergency team, I'm on the front lines of a major health care issue that need immediate attention.

The costs of keeping a person barely alive during their last few weeks of life easily run into the millions. The procedures undertaken at such times are painful and poorly thought out, and do not at all increase the quality of one's life. The unfortunate senior who falls into the end-of-life emergency medical cycle can expect his or her final days to be miserable and lonely, with family relegated to the sidelines, while medical people rush around administering "care." Such a person is robbed of dignity, and robbed of the right to die with loved ones nearby.

The reason why medical teams are pressured to perform endless procedures on our most ill seniors is because the legal and ethical issues at stake are in limbo. That's because the questions raised are not just for individuals to answer, but for society as well. They are questions for a nation.

Our president injected himself into this conversation recently, by pointing out folly of the total hip replacement endured by his grandmother weeks before she died. His comment was pertinent, and any health care worker who was paying attention should have been pleased. We've all been there, poking and prodding someone who is well into their ninth decade of life, thinking to ourselves, "What do we think we're doing?"

But rather than appreciating the chance to work out a helpful policy that would be good for everyone, the media pushes the Republican "death panel" distortions. All news organs mention Palin's and Huckabee's fabrications again and again, letting their lies go unchallenged, muddying the air with nonsense, as if the President and the Democrats honestly want to enter the business of cutting people's lives short. That's ridiculous and everyone knows it.

So why does the Right Wing Scream Machine get a free media pass to spread their fabrications? Because Sarah Palin's lies are flashy and dramatic. Honestly, before someone is pulled into spreading that woman's nonsense, they should take a walk around an Intensive Care Unit and see what's at stake.

Molly Holmes, Oro Valley

Not prepared to deal with state realities

Cheryl Cage's latest and ridiculous missive in The Explorer allows the voters of LD-26 an insightful glimpse into the misplaced priorities of an out-of-touch Democrat and her thoughts on how to solve Arizona's fiscal challenges.

After reading her editorial, it is clear that she continues to be completely unprepared to deal with the economic realities that grip Arizona. Her solutions follow the liberal, Nancy Pelosi playbook to the letter.

Ms. Cage advocates for increases to government spending, and higher taxes on those who create the jobs we so desperately need. She also supports top-heavy bureaucratic institutional administrators who drain the system of resources that our children need to be competitive in tomorrow's global marketplace.

Ms. Cage blames Republicans for not working with the Democrats while ignoring that Senate Republicans, led by Sen. Jonathan Paton, offered the Senate Democrats an opportunity to present their own budget proposal and that, with their bluff called, the Senate Democrats caved and offered nothing. You cannot be the Party of "No" and then complain that you are not being involved enough.

As a self-proclaimed Lexus-driving environmentalist, in favor of gay marriage, new taxes on golf carts, and building a railroad between Phoenix and Tucson, we shouldn't be surprised that Cage supports programs that do less with more, nor that she thinks that more spending will cure what ails our state government.

But maybe she is on to one thing. Maybe we should take her proposal of hiring 300 Department of Revenue employees to collect $400M in unpaid taxes, and expand it. Using her logic, we should hire 3,000 of them, generate $4B in unpaid taxes and balance the budget. If only the real world worked that way.

With over 400 days until next year's election, my funny bone looks forward to hearing more of Ms. Cage's unique solutions to solve Arizona's budget and economic problems. Until then, I'm counting on our Republican legislators to continue making the hard, reality-based decisions necessary to return our state to prosperity.

Shirley Cooney, Tucson

People along La Cañada misled, abused

Residents along the La Canada improvement, Ina to Calle Concordia, dealt with PCDOT to no avail for over nine years on this project.

Supervisor Day supports, to this day, our mitigation requests for those few homes that have been systematically excluded.

PCDOT has never much argued with or really acknowledged the residents regarding their research – PCDOT did rip into Ron Hilwig's proposition to save money on the roadway with minor redesigns, but PCDOT ignored residents and their painstaking efforts to protect their investments. Mr. Huckelberry dropped the guillotine on the one potential and decent recommendation by the RTA subcommittee, that any excess funding remain with the project and be used for mitigation denied to those few homes.

Six properties were presented for additional mitigation, not the whole span of the roadway. No one asked for continuous walls. When push came to shove, the residents reduced the number of severely impacted and un-mitigated properties to three. In his final letter to the residents, Mr. Huckelberry callously denied any need for further mitigation and indicated the matter was finished.

The residents had done their homework and strenuously opined that the proposed budget was grossly miscalculated, especially in light of the current market, and that there would be funding available for additional mitigation to the few identified properties.

How should those residents feel, Mr. Ellis, having now been vindicated but still getting nothing? Should they not be livid, having spent much of the past years to devoting their short supply of spare time to reason with the people (whose salaries they pay) hell-bent on destroying what they have spent years to establish? You expect them "to make 'a request at some point in time' for more walls and other abatement." Gee, ya' think?

Though it is Mr. Ellis who speaks, it is not all his fault – he must follow orders.

My neighbors and friends have been misled and abused. They beseeched PCDOT for nothing more than reasonable assistance, and there is plenty of money left over for that. The bids for all those "other projects" will also likely come in under budget – where do we suppose the extra money will really go?

I have served as LCMNA's liaison to the county for over 10 years, and never experienced such blatant disregard. This is inexcusable.

Donna Heidinger, Pima County

This letter was shortened – Ed.

To blame the profit-seekersis ludicrous

Let me compassionately state that I am glad that Mr. Myers did not lose the use of his leg. However.

The circumstances surrounding the refusal of his insurer to pay for a procedure is an issue for courts to decide after getting all the information. To assume Mr. Myers was 100 percent in the right because he says so is not logical. Also, if it was that important, he could have paid for it himself or if he is indigent, could seek help from others. Help is available, even in Tucson / Oro Valley.

Extending the logic he uses to all doctors, nurses, hospitals, radiological companies, attorneys, etc., as well as insurers being immoral for making a profit because they do so by serving those who have "pain and misery" is ludicrous.

The WHO report is from the year 2000. Glen Whitman, associate professor of economics, Cal State University, May 2008, wrote this: "How The World Health Organization unfairly Evaluates National Health Care Systems." This report and others show why the WHO should not be relied upon for anything close to being objective. I doubt Mr. Myers has read it. He appears to blame America first.

Myers asserts that the primary reason for the banking failure was deregulation. Poppycock. He must be missing what ACORN did since the '70s, he must be missing what Congress did by telling the banks that they had to issue loans to those not really qualified (Bush is also complicit as well as the Republican Congress when they were in control of not stopping this nonsense), and he must have missed, right up until the start of the real collapse, Barney Frank and Chris Dodd telling us there was no problem.

Was profit, or as he probably really means, greed, a part of the problem? Yes. But it was not the driving force. Social change was the driving force. Those involved wanted to give the American dream to all people, including those not having earned it and able to sustain it on their own. Taxpayers are picking up the tab.

Kenneth Gareau, Oro Valley

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