Letters to the Editor

Mayor Nutter
Mayor Nutter
Posted: August 10, 2011

Toomey picture distorted

In Sunday's op-ed by Sen. Pat Toomey ("No, we shifted the debate but the cuts fall short") he says: "Excessive debt leads to higher interest rates, serious inflation, and tax increases - sometimes all at once." One must ask, "What planet is the senator living on?" Higher interest rates? Not on my savings account. Serious inflation? Tell that to the people trying to sell their homes. Tax increases? On whom? Public servants who peddle such untruths cannot be taken seriously.

Walter Ebmeyer, Bryn Mawr,

Car ads encourage unsafe driving

We're so familiar with the ads that they no longer register: The sleek car speeding at a reckless pace performs maneuvers that the small print disclaims as being done "on a closed course with professional drivers." But the message is there: "Be fast! Be daring! It's the guy thing to do!"

Tragically, two more teenagers have fallen victim to this attitude, which sells cars but ruins lives ("Speed was 'up to 99 mph' in Horsham double-fatality," Saturday). Our hearts go out to the families and friends of Robert Nagle and Edward Coombs, whose fatal speeding accident bears witness to the outrageous and irresponsible anti-education perpetrated by car manufacturers.

Is there no one in a position of responsibility in Washington who has the will to take on this insidious and pervasive problem? Shame on car manufacturers for the greed that puts profit over lives, and shame on our leaders for not taking them to task.

Theodora Briggs Sweeney, Horsham,

S&P ratings aren't credible

Standard & Poor's, as well as Moody's and Fitch, ignored the abuses of the mortgage-banking industry and bestowed top ratings that were undeserved. This was one of the causes of the 2008 recession. Given S&P's past ineptitude at rating, how can its downgrading of the United States have any credibility?

Donald and Louise Heath, Doylestown,

Gerlach likes feds for this job

Just days after Rep. Jim Gerlach (R., Pa.) praised Congress for not handing the president a blank check in the debt-ceiling crisis, he touts legislation that will expand the role of the federal government ("Area congressmen tout U.S. puppy-mill bill," Friday).

The Puppy Uniform Protection and Safety Act will either increase the budget of the Department of Agriculture, or reallocate current dollars away from food safety or other programs that benefit people.

As a dog owner, I understand the special relationship between people and their pets, but this bill, at this time, seems like the sort of "blank-check" spending that Congressman Gerlach most likely would oppose if it benefited human beings.

Mary Scherf, Bala Cynwyd

Anti-shale-tax view is 'theological'

In Sunday's Currents section, Lt. Gov. Jim Cawley argued against taxing Marcellus Shale gas extraction in Pennsylvania, saying it would "deter" drilling and compel the industry to "leave" the state ("Why Pa. mustn't levy new tax on gas drillers").

There are 33 states with active shale deposits. Thirty-one of them impose a tax. In fact, the states with the most natural-gas production have among the highest tax rates, with Texas, Oklahoma, and Wyoming imposing a tax averaging more than 7 percent of the value of gas produced.

The shale-gas industry is not going anywhere. There are billions of dollars to be made on natural gas that the drillers can get only in Pennsylvania.

Cawley argues that any tax would be "punitive" and that "taxes deter business and job growth." That is not an argument against taxing Marcellus Shale gas. That is an argument against taxing anything, ever.

Refusing to charge out-of-state companies to take our resources out of our ground isn't about keeping an industry here. This is about the Corbett administration's theological objection to taxes in general, regardless of Pennsylvania's educational, environmental, or infrastructure needs.

State Sen. Daylin Leach, King of Prussia

Nutter not kowtowing

I was very encouraged when I listened to Mayor Nutter's impassioned homily from the pulpit ("Nutter blasts mobs from pulpit," Monday) as well as his comments the next day ("Nutter tightens curfew as mob step," Monday).

Everything he said about the flash mobs in both cases was right on the mark, and he is to be commended for having the guts to say it publicly.

But here comes Inquirer columnist Annette John-Hall, saying that Nutter is kowtowing to white folks ("Nutter playing shame game," Tuesday).

Maybe John-Hall should take a page out of the mayor's book and stop blaming whites every time racial incidents occur in the city.

Joe Pasquarello, Medford,

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