Washington loves rewarding failure

To the editor:

Is it just me, or have Americans completely lost their minds and common sense? When did it become a good thing to reward failure and incompetence while punishing hard work and good business practices?

I am so angry that we are even thinking about bailing out the auto industry. The companies are fully responsible for the mess they’re in (although their executives adamantly blame everything else they can think of), yet they have the audacity and arrogance to demand money from taxpayers to rescue them? The president of the United Auto Workers says we must not allow the companies to fail because it is not the fault of workers; they are all caught up in these hard economic times, and it’s Congress’s duty to give them money immediately to avoid bankruptcy.

So why has Toyota made $4 billion in profit from its U.S. factories while Ford lost $9 billion during the same time?

We’re already bailing out irresponsible homeowners who bought houses they couldn’t afford and furnished them with borrowed money they can’t pay back.

What about the rest of us who work hard, pay bills on time and don’t live beyond our means? We are being punished while anyone who is failing seems to be rewarded with big government handouts, courtesy of the taxpayers.

Who’s next in line? Is the government now thinking about forgiving people’s credit card debts (who are probably the homeowners we’re already bailing out)? If it didn’t go against everything I believed in, I would stop paying my mortgage, start racking up some credit card bills (maybe buy a Ford to help the auto companies), and then wait for my government handout. After all, it’s the new American way, right?

Joanne Orrico

LAS VEGAS

Taxpayers ignored

To the editor:

When the bankers with their golden parachutes needed help, Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson spoke up for them and gave them taxpayer money. When the mortgage brokers needed help, Mr. Paulson spoke up and gave them taxpayer money. When the highly paid auto workers and their pensioners needed help, Congress set about giving them taxpayer money.

When the struggling taxpayers need help, who is left to speak up for them?

Joyce Albert

HENDERSON

Parking problems

To the editor:

I don’t go downtown very often. For some reason, I resist it. I’ve been to First Friday only once, and though friends have told me I’d dig the Griffin and the Beauty Bar, I never seem to make it there.

Recently, however, I was motivated to go to the Vegas Valley Book Festival at the Fifth Street School. The renovated facility is beautiful, and finding it was no problem, but the downtown parking situation — specifically the new electronic meters — provided no enticement for me to return to the area anytime soon.

It took me a minute to understand we no longer enjoy the luxury of our own private parking meter, and while I was mildly annoyed with having to note the number of my space and then find the communal collection device, my blood pressure skyrocketed once I tried to work the darn thing. I have no patience for machines; and so, when the meter rejected my perfectly valid debit card for the seventh time, I did what any normal, frustrated person would do: I kicked it. And then it took my card.

The Book Festival was lovely and it was refreshing to see so many people still interested in the ancient art of reading words on paper. However, when I returned to my car, there stood a befuddled elderly couple struggling with the same meter that I had previously assaulted.

“Kick it,” I told them.

I’m not sure when I’ll venture downtown again, but when I do, I’ll be sure to wear steel-toed shoes.

Linda O’Connor

HENDERSON

Horse killers

To the editor:

It seems as if the Bureau of Land Management wants to wipe wild horses off the face of the Earth. I don’t know what these beautiful creatures have done to deserve this.

In the meantime, we are protecting the desert tortoises, and deer, buffalo and elk roam free. Even alligators in Florida are being catered to and relocated when they get out of hand. What is wrong with this picture?

Madeleine Pickens, the wife of energy tycoon T. Boone Pickens, has the resources to fulfill her promise to save thousands of horses — more power to her. She should create a “mustang park” and advertise it as such. Photographers would come from all over the globe just to see and photograph these animals in their habitat. They would not have a problem paying a fee.

There is something really, really wrong with the BLM if they consider this idea a burden on the agency.

Carol McKenzie

LAS VEGAS

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