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Letters to the Editor 7/19

July 18, 2000

Letters to the Editor 7/19



And the high bid for president is...



To the editor:

I have a wonderful method of choosing our president. It could be made into an amendment to the Constitution, but I haven't written too many Constitutional amendments, so perhaps that may be done by someone else.

The coming presidential election lets us choose between two unqualified, mediocre and not-too-brainy fellows. The president election process is long-drawn-out and costly.

So why not hold a presidential auction every four years, in which anyone - even a nincompoop, just as in our present system - can bid for the job? The money would go to the government for vital needs, such as lowering taxes for the wealthy.

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Sounds like a winner to me!

Eugene Lincoln

Hagerstown

Records are there for the looking



To the editor:

I've become disillusioned by continuing piecemeal stories about President Clinton's draft deferments, Vice President Gore's five Vietnam months, or Governor Bush's brief assignment to the Alabama National Guard - all based on interviews with individuals or isolated letters. Where are these military personnel records?

I know if anyone needed to know about my Naval Reserve enlistments in 1949 and 1954, my 1950-54 unsuccessful commission applications, my 1956 appointment to Officer Candidate School, my extended active duty from 1956 through 1959, my NR drilling or active duty from 1959-87, or my retirement in 1987 - I could probably produce copies from a military file box stored in my garage. If not, an inquiry could be sent to the Military Records Center in St. Louis, and with my permission - copies of needed documents could be released to the public.

I cannot believe US Army and/or National Guard files are less complete than those of the U.S. Navy or Naval Reserve. While not all preparatory or informational letters may be in my official record, there is enough to verify I was denied the right to strike for journalist, named yeoman striker, later storekeeper striker, still later Officer Candidate Seaman, and ultimately commissioned ensign. When, as a reservist, I drilled away from my regular drill site (which was frequent) - documents note attendance points. Even my many unpaid drills gained retirement points carefully summarized during each inactive duty year. All my Guard and Air Guard friends have similar records - whether they achieved paid retired status or not.

Why can't we read news reports documented by official records, rather than rumors from shipmates? After all, each of these men is far more prominent than I am. Aren't both they (and we the public) entitled to facts, rather than as we say in the Navy - scuttlebutt?

David L. "Dave" Woods

Middleway, W.Va.

Cut the middleman, just buy the land



To the editor:

In reference to the AP article, "Most tobacco farmers taking buyout:" If I understand the article correctly:

The article references Maryland farmers only. The farmers "promise" not to grow tobacco. A typical farmer with 30 acres will receive $50,000 a year for 10 years. A total of $500,000.

The farmer can use the land as he sees fit during the 10 years. For other cash crops, etc.

At the end of 10 years the farmer still owns the land and can again grow tobacco.

I assume the farmers (such as Sen. T. Middleton D-Charles , who was named in article) think that Maryland is a wonderful place.

Any tobacco shortfall will be made up by other states. The taxpayers receive nothing.

What a state - under our present politicians. If this is not illegal then it is at least a rip-off of taxpayer money. Why not use the $500,000 and buy the farm? At least we would end up with some land.

Kenneth Archer

Hagerstown

Bring on Bill Moulden



To the editor:

If Bill Moulden's column in the July 2 edition is any indication of what is to follow, please, please, please run more of his columns - often. Preferably on Sundays.

I already miss Dennis Shaw's column. Thanks.

Alan Kellerman

Sharpsburg

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