Michael Wiseman, Swarthmore, Wiseman_Law@comcast.net
What a delicious irony that the self-appointed defender of democracy Edward Snowden has taken refuge in Russia, where it now seems obvious that the Russians have breached the privacy of U.S. diplomats by tapping and taping Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Neuland's private conversation with our ambassador to Ukraine. It has been known for a long time that Russia, along with China, is one of the most egregious violators of individual, corporate, and government privacy, yet Snowden uses Russia as a haven and platform to criticize the United States. His latest TV appearances there show him to be coiffed and well-dressed, and assuming a martyr's stance - fearful he may be shot or poisoned. Well, the Russians certainly have found themselves an outstanding propaganda tool.
Marlene Lieber, Medford
Sing out for peace
The opening parade of athletes from many nations at the XXII Olympic Winter Games was a perfect example of the joy and spirit of togetherness that can and should exist on a global scale. To help to sustain this aura, it would be great to sing the song "Let There Be Peace on Earth" at the closing ceremony.
Edwin E. Scully, Philadelphia, email@example.com
Coverage for all
Recent forecasts on the effect of the Affordable Care Act on employment highlight the illogic of health care being tied to jobs ("The good news on Obamacare," Feb. 10). In most advanced countries, there is little or no association between the two. Here, too, Medicare and Medicaid largely decouple work and health insurance. The American association of the two is an artifact of wartime, when employers barred from raising wages offered health care as a benefit. We shouldn't be stuck with this system nearly 70 years later. A single-payer system is where we should be: Medicare for all.
Bert Strieb, Philadelphia, firstname.lastname@example.org
Rail route to take
SEPTA planners missed the shortest, lowest-cost route from the Norristown High-Speed Line to King of Prussia: the Trenton Cutoff of the former Pennsylvania Railroad ("SEPTA, residents talk about King of Prussia rail," Feb. 4). Built as a double-track steam railroad line, it has been single-tracked for 20 to 30 years and sees one daily freight train each way. Along its north side is the abandoned Reading Railroad's Chester Valley branch, destined to be a hiking trail. In the mid-1960s, Merritt Taylor, owner of the Philadelphia Suburban Transit Company, which ran the high-speed line's predecessor, proposed joint use of the Chester Valley branch, to no avail. SEPTA planners shouldn't avoid such an obvious solution today.
James Brazel, Berwyn, email@example.com
Clearing the record
Clark DeLeon's Sunday column incorrectly stated the number of times the Beatles performed in Philadelphia. They appeared at Convention Hall in September 1964 and at JFK Stadium in August 1966.