The Declarer (Floyd McWilliams' Blog)

Sunday, October 24, 2004

The upcoming election brings out the very best of the San Jose Mercury News letters page:

$500 million on TV ads? What a waste

I read with astonishment and disgust that $500 million will be spent on TV ads for this presidential campaign (Oct. 19). Why is there no outcry about this injustice? I think England has it right by allowing campaigning for just six weeks before electing a new prime minister.

Maybe then we'd have enough money in this country for the more important issues.

Laura Sigura

There are around 100 million Americans who will cast ballots a week from Tuesday. If they all bought one magazine to help them decide who to vote for, the total bill would be ... $500 million dollars. End the injustice and tyranny of Newsweek and Time!

I'd like to know what important issues Laura wants to solve for half a gigabuck. Maybe we could give each citizen a change belt so we don't have to wait at the store for the clerk to dispense small coins?

Of presidents and e-mail spam

While deleting spam from my e-mail inbox this morning, I was struck by how similar President Bush is to some of that spam. Many of the subject lines are plausible, even compelling, and I get them again and again. But when it comes to substance, it is all bait and switch.

The president said he would fully fund Head Start. He said he would limit mercury. He says again and again that the economy is strong. He said the war in Iraq was over. Like the spam, what he says has no relation to his actions.

Jim Kleck
Santa Cruz

"He said he would limit mercury." Every now and then a Merc letter-writer leaves me in awe. I assume that Kleck meant the element mercury, but one can't be too sure; maybe he's worried that the planet Mercury is agitating to leave orbit. Well, if Bush does plan to keep Mercury in its place as the closest planet to the sun, I hope he does so with the full cooperation of France and Germany the world.

And I love how people who castigate Bush for failing to regulate mercury or arsenic to their liking never bother to think about the status quo ante. If mercury was such an environmental scourge, why did the Clinton administration do nothing about it?



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