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A few conditions on teacher ‘incentive’ pay

To the editor:

Your Sunday editorial ended with the hope that any teacher “incentive pay plan will acknowledge the value of a pay structure that holds educators accountable for results and rewards teachers whose students improve.” I will be in favor of this plan as soon as classroom teachers can control the elements of their bottom line, just as the Review-Journal managers control the elements of theirs.

The Review-Journal controls the quality of its editors, jettisons non-performing workers, eliminates unprofitable parts of the newspaper, and has total control over the finished product. Teachers, however, have no input as to the quality of their supervisors, must continue to allow non-performing students to usurp valuable class time, cannot eliminate useless federal and state mandates, and have no control over the 19 hours a day the student isn’t in school.

Doesn’t seem like a level playing field to me.

Robert Bencivenga

HENDERSON

Illegal students

To the editor:

According to what I could find on the Internet, the Clark County School District has an approximate enrollment of 341,403 students for this school year. The estimated spending is $5,754 per student. I was not able to find a number for the estimated number of illegal immigrant students, but I have heard it may be as high as 30,000.

That is a lot of bodies to take care of at the expense of the taxpayer. To imagine the cost of this is mind-boggling — land purchases, building construction and landscaping, building maintenance, utilities, bus drivers, teachers, principals, etc. Just the basic yearly cost per illegal student is more than $170 million.

Throw in the cost of low-income expenditures, food programs, English language training, etc. and you can start to get an idea of the amount of drain on the system we have here.

Does the teachers union plan to go after the federal government to enforce our immigration policy? Or is their proposal to raise the gaming tax just an effort to extort money to further enhance their bureaucratic expansion?

Robert Opp

LAS VEGAS

Lying Republicans

To the editor:

Regarding your recent editorial “Have GOP candidates found the banner?” and the subhead about a “low-tax, small government approach”:

Of course they have. They never lost it. It’s the same banner the GOP’s been waving for years. And, sometimes, when the American public forgets it’s being lied to, they even win with it.

But it is a lie — for the most part, taxes are not lowered (for most citizens), government is not shrunk, and men are not “free to lead their own lives.”

Tax-and-spend Democrats are replaced by borrow-and-spend Republicans — government still works, but instead of working for the majority of people it works for a much smaller elite. Men are free to live under conservative rules and ideals rather than liberal ones.

Basically, we the people want certain things from our government, and those things must be paid for. Democrats recognize this fact, Republicans ignore it.

The poles of reality and denial exist in other areas, too, but the people frequently find comfort in believing Republican lies.

I hope that eight years under a lying, power-hungry, Constitution-weakening administration has opened the public’s eyes and made a renewal of the real America a possibility in 2008.

ALAN KOSS

HENDERSON

Woman hater

To the editor:

As I read Geoffrey Wheatcroft’s Sunday commentary denigrating Sen. Hillary Clinton, and claiming the only reason she’s been able to make a credible run for president was because of her husband, I realized that Mr. Wheatcroft is simply a plain old woman-hater.

After all, Sen. Clinton is a lawyer, as are Mayor Rudy Giuliani, Gov. Mitt Romney and Sen. Fred Thompson. Rudy was a two-term mayor of New York City, Mitt was a governor of the small state of Massachusetts, and Fred served eight years in the U.S. Senate. Meanwhile, Hillary was first lady for eight years, and is currently a senator from New York. So why doesn’t she have the resume to run for president?

We should note that the only reason George W. Bush was selected as a candidate for the presidency was because of his father having served in that office.

So what are we missing? Well, Hillary is a woman and Mr. Wheatcroft apparently doesn’t want one of them in charge of our country.

RICHARD J. MUNDY

LAS VEGAS

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