TREO supports budget override

Re: The Oct. 5 article "TUSD facing a tough sell on spending hike."

TREO's 2008 Community Report Card recently highlighted several "red flags" in the area of education in the Tucson region. Particularly, math and science rankings for fourth- and eighth-grade students in the state of Arizona compare unfavorably against our competitor regions based on research conducted by the University of Arizona.

An important first step in improving education is to support Prop. 403, the TUSD budget override, which would reduce class sizes for K-12 education and improve employee incentives for qualified teachers. In addition, funding for the override would help the district recruit and retain the very teachers needed to improve math and science rankings.

TREO's board of directors strongly supports the TUSD budget override, and we encourage you to vote "yes" on Prop. 403.

Joe Snell

President and CEO, Tucson Regional Economic Opportunities Inc., Tucson

McCarthyism has returned

Re: the Oct. 10 editorial "Campaign ads should stick to the issues."

Listening to the John McCain campaign recently makes me fear that Joe McCarthy has returned from the grave. I was a small child during the McCarthy hearings. The FBI showed up at our door because my father was a friend of a man who was being tried at the hearings.

We were very afraid. The trial ended before they got to my dad's name to testify. Like so many others, my father's life could have been ruined because of guilt by association.

The McCain campaign has run out of ideas so it is using guilt by association to run against Barack Obama.

William Ayers was a terrorist more than 30 years ago. Obama was helped by Ayers, with a house fund-raising party, when he first started his career. Therefore, Obama must be like Ayers.

Do you know the history of everyone who has invited you to their house? Sounds like McCarthy to me.

Now, if McCain is elected, who will be safe from guilt by association.

Linda Horowitz

Physical therapist, Tucson

Government saves the executives

Back in 1929, bankers jumped off of tall buildings when their banks failed. No danger of that now. Just wait for Uncle Sugar to reward you with millions in golden parachutes.

Reyes J. Rodriguez

Retired military, Sahuarita

Guardian angel at the gas pump

Usually I keep a close eye on my car's gasoline gauge and know that when the needle gets to the "E" mark I have about two gallons remaining. However recently I had no idea how long the needle had dipped so low and prayed I could get through the Thornydale construction area to the Costco pumps, where I was headed to shop.

Upon arrival, my card wouldn't work. I was certain I couldn't drive to another station. The attendant finally whipped out his own cards and proceeded to put gasoline into my car. I offered what cash I had in my purse, but he refused and said it was his "good deed for the day."

An answer to a prayer? You bet. Please give Marc a flower for being my guardian angel that day.

I have money in an envelope and will get it to Marc as soon as I see him on duty again. Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. God bless you, Marc.

Edna M. Coburn

Retired, Tucson

Rhetoric is offensive

Sen. John McCain states that Sen. Barack Obama "pals around with terrorists who attack our own country." Gov. Sarah Palin works up her crowd with "Obama doesn't see the same America we do."

When a member of the crowd shouts out "traitor" or "kill him" without a vehemently strong response from Palin to quell such an outlandish remark, then McCain and Palin are the ones espousing the most egregious behavior against our country.

So much for "country first." The McCain-Palin rhetoric is offensive and unpatriotic and should not be tolerated.

Michael F. Hamant

Physician, Tucson

Overreacting to the market

Historically the cost of company shares in our stock markets has averaged about 15 times the annual earnings of a company. However, over the last 25 years the average cost of common stock was 30 percent higher than this norm, more than 21 times earnings.

This week's plunge has little to do with economic weakness and much to do with a needed adjustment to a market inflated by artificially cheap credit begun by the foray into lending by the Feds in the form of government-sponsored agencies. This allowed families, companies and investors alike to overextend themselves, acquiring outside their actual ability to pay and at prices disconnected from the true value of companies, products and services purchased.

This inflation is now erasing itself, expeditiously, as the credit party comes to an abrupt, screeching halt. Issues of liquidity, job creation, tax policy, energy consumption and others are real problems in our economy, but stock markets, at best, are a reflection five places removed from this reality and our media and politicians would do right by consumers to focus on things that matter instead of feeding the sensationalism of Wall Street panic journalism.

Taylor Davidson

Licensed broker

Obama can turn the tide

Re: the Oct. 10 letter "McCain, Palin will clean up D.C.."

To the letter writer who says McCain-Palin will turn the tide, I respond that John McCain has been one of the forces behind the tide for the past eight years. What makes the letter writer think he will suddenly turn into something he is not — a person concerned about the average American. He is a rich person who has never had to deal with the issues an average American deals with every day.

Barack Obama has been where we are. He is truly concerned about America and the average Joe. I can only think of three types of people who will vote for McCain: Racists, the rich and religious zealots who care more about anti-abortion and anti-gay legislation than they do about our country.

Obama-Biden is our chance for turning the tide in this country.

John Webster

Retired, Tucson

Americans could use some optimism

Over the last several days, I have watched television and read the Star for information, ideas and some hope. I have found the people at CNBC, generally talking heads, act responsibly in their effort to inform and to calm.

Business leaders have been quoted about their efforts to reassure even as institutional investors sell out. Most people have found some solace in holding their heads up, listening to our future president give advice and information. The other candidate, however, just keeps slinging mud in his effort to gain the presidency. I am referring to our own Sen. John McCain.

McCain is blasting the airwaves with slanderous references to Sen. Barack Obama and his affiliation with a former anti-war activist (active when Obama was 8 years old). The two worked on neighborhood issues in Chicago.

My plea to McCain is to try and raise his vision. We are in a crisis. We need positive leadership. We need positive advice, plans and hope.

The Republican Party has lead before and will lead again. But McCain's negative agenda is depressing. It casts his proposals with despair.

William K. Pederson