weather icon Mostly Cloudy
RJ App
Vegas News, Alerts, ePaper

Let’s solve drought, unemployment issues

To the editor:

There are two huge problems to solve in Las Vegas: unemployment and drought.

The drought can be helped immensely by converting front grass lawns into desert landscaping. This, however, takes money.

The Southern Nevada Water Authority has had a program in place to help homeowners convert. Many cash-strapped homeowners, however, cannot afford to convert at the current water authority rate. Our representatives in Washington should be urged to help make these conversions affordable.

With an influx of several millions of dollars for this purpose, the water authority can rapidly expand this program, landscaping businesses can hire some of our unemployed, and the country can save precious water for the Southwest.

If there was ever a worthwhile earmark, this one is it. I urge you to call or write to our senators and representatives to urge them to help use our tax monies to help solve our problems of unemployment and drought.

Gary Musser

Las Vegas

Saving education

To the editor:

As our new school superintendent is settling in and unpacking, I hope he remembered to bring a large broom from Colorado. The time for a major house-cleaning agenda is long overdue.

Having been in the district for 10 years, I have observed some very encouraging and very sad components of education in Nevada.

Without being verbose, allow me to make several points.

1. The district is too top heavy. Period. Trim the fat.

2. Fairly and honestly review teachers. Those who cannot be effective in the classroom need to be released regardless of who they know in the district.

3. Parents need to get students to us on time, dressed appropriately for the business of education and not excuse their disrespectful behavior. Ask to see their homework every night. If they say they don’t have any, find out why.

4. Students, get your work done on time and invest in your own education. I shouldn’t care about your future more than you do.

5. Decide once and for all just how important education is in this state. If education is not the top priority for the future of Nevada, then please tell us and stop the charade. Everyone will get an A so the administrators and higher ups can pat each other on the back about what a great job they’re doing.

We can turn this mess we call education in Nevada around, but it will take a committed effort from everyone.

Frank Russo


Corny idea

To the editor:

In his Dec. 16, letter, Tom Buis makes a good attempt at defending the indefensible U.S. ethanol program. I note that Mr. Buis gets paid to boost ethanol since he heads a coalition of ethanol supporters.

In fairness, I grant that the ideas behind using ethanol are all good and well-meaning. But they do not work. We have tried this experiment several times in the past 30 years.

We really got going on ethanol in 1979 when we built 163 plants to produce ethanol because the federal government gave out a 40 cent per gallon subsidy. Most of the ethanol plants quickly shut down because they were not cost effective and very few people wanted the ethanol. Now that subsidy is up to 46 cents a gallon and the ethanol lobby has gotten a federal mandate for our gasoline. So it is good times for the corn growers.

What is wrong with ethanol used in gasoline? Plenty. Corn prices are at all time highs, which distorts other grain prices worldwide and causes people in developing countries to go hungry. Ethanol production and use pollutes more than ordinary gasoline, giving us more bad air and smog. Ethanol gives us poor gas mileage. It is highly corrosive and is not good for bulk storage tankage, gas lines or vehicle tanks. Ethanol raises gasoline prices as well as food costs. It costs all taxpayers to continue the ethanol subsidy.

Even Al Gore recognizes the ethanol idea as a mistake. Ethanol from corn is a really bad idea which should be stopped by simply withdrawing the subsidy and the mandate for its use in gasoline.

Richard N. Fulton


Lying GOP

To the editor:

I am wiping the tears from my eyes after listening to the conservative Republican members of the U.S. House and Senate complaining about having to work during what should be their Christmas vacation. These representatives should consider the men and women they sent to fight in two wars of choice who are away from their wives, husbands and kids and are doing their jobs with no complaints.

Like many Americans, I am sick and tired of the lame excuses these so called “representatives” are giving for stalling, blocking, delaying and preventing important work before the House and Senate. No wonder the approval rating for Congress is one of the lowest ever.

It is laughable that they feel it is necessary to lie about the real underlying problem: that they will stop at nothing to prevent President Obama from getting credit for anything that is accomplished during his presidency.

Dale Pitney


Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
LETTER: The Beltway debt drams

There is an old axiom about Washington: Nothing happens until it has to.

LETTER: The GOP and the national debt

The debt was about $10 trillion after Bush the younger. Mr. Obama doubled it to $20 trillion.

LETTER: FBI tramples FISA laws

No, these are intentional felony violations of the FISA laws. Felony prosecutions are warranted.

LETTER: Durham report turns up nothing

FBI agents and officials are human beings. If there is any benefit to this report, it is in identifying procedures that may need tweaking.