Petty bureaucrats harm area businesses

Re: the March 23 editorial “It’s time to fix area’s business-unfriendly image.”

Sadly, this editorial spent 90 percent of its comments blaming the Legislature, lack of school funding, roads, taxes and other possible problems affecting the entire region, if not the state.

One short paragraph addressed the real reasons why Tucson and Pima County have this reputation — note that Marana and Oro Valley were not included — it is the rules, regulations, permits and licenses controlled and applied by petty bureaucrats that can be used to make the process fair and reasonable, or apparently all too often, a nightmare.

The editorial asks for specific cases where the experience was either good or bad. It will be very interesting to see who is willing to put their business at risk by blowing the whistle on some county or city department functionary. Better yet, would the county or city officials do anything about it?

Tom Vana

Retired, Marana

Charter schools better, so give them the money

Re: the March 23 editorial cartoon by David Fitzsimmons

Once again, Fitz’s Sunday cartoon was based more on ideology than logic, political agenda instead of intention.

Liberals against vouchers have failed to grasp one basic concept: The purpose of education is to educate the youth. The education system’s objective is not to provide jobs for teachers but to provide a means for teachers to inspire and inform; jobs (and therefore teachers’ unions) are the by-product of educating students.

Why do we care who gets the money as long as the youth get the best education money can buy? Of course, based on statistics, the youth do not get the best education money can buy (based on a comparison to other countries). Statistics also show that charter schools provide a better education for the same money.

Of course, the teachers’ union contributes millions to the Democrats’ campaigns, so there is a reason for making sure the money keeps going to public schools. Which goal do you support?

LH Hancock

Accountant, Tucson

Poultry rights bill is a legislative farce

Re: the March 19 article “Mandate for poultry rights advances.”

A clear picture of one of Arizona’s biggest problems is evident in this article.

Arizona faces issues with child health and safety, infrastructure, funding for public education, health care, inability to attract business, mental health and a host of other problems.

But our “lawmakers” are concerned with private ownership ... of chickens?

Both the Senate and House are complicit in this farce. We are not served by either house, which appears, in this instance, to lack the compassion, intelligence and political courage to engage the issues that affect all Arizonans in their daily lives.

Jeff Hahn

Retired teacher, Tucson

Krauthammer’s knife no baguette alternative

Re: the March 21 column “Putin wields a knife; Obama whips out a baguette.”

I had to go back and read Charles Krauthammer’s column a couple times before I realized he really does not get it. Sometimes a baguette is better than a knife.

One can gain sustenance from a baguette but not so much from a knife unless one wants to feast on what is slain by the knife. And that may be Putin’s intent. If Krauthammer thinks we should just sneak into this conflict as we did in Vietnam, maybe he should reread some history.

I make no pretense to understand foreign relations and the political implications, but I do know that it is much easier to criticize if one has no “skin in the game,” and certainly there are many pundits on both the left and the right who have none.

Maybe all the critics should put some skin in the game, but that is not likely to happen.

Gerald Schwartz

Retired military, Tucson

Poll on D-M support was just propaganda

Re: the March 20 article “92% back D-M, other area bases, poll shows.”

The least the Star can do to regain some integrity on this issue is to print the truth about the propaganda disguised as a survey or poll that led to this article.

The sham survey was funded by the Southern Arizona Defense Alliance and conducted by Strongpoint Marketing, whose website declares, “Our public relations team is made of expert storytellers.”

They fail to mention that their stories are fiction.

I am a retired social worker who moved to Tucson in January 1976. I do not live in the Davis-Monthan contour zone, but do live near midtown Tucson, and most importantly, I cannot stand by when citizens are being bullied by the very military, which is supposed to be protecting all Americans.

Lee Stanfield

Retired social worker, Tucson

New publisher should move Star toward center

I was hoping that with a new publisher on board the Star would somehow realign itself to the center — not left or right, but to the center — and be a periodical that would represent a variety of different viewpoints and not march to the same out-of-tune notes presently being sung by a majority of the media at large.

When you sing karaoke by yourself, it is usually off tune and shrill. If you seek a more harmonic approach, please try signing along with the rest of us, who at times may hit a variety of different notes but overall add to the melody being sung.

Shaun Pfund