Letters to the Editor - Sept. 3

September 03, 2011

Suggestions welcomed for airport profitability

To the editor:

I thank Tim Bussard in his Aug. 27 letter for introducing a touch of reality into the Hagerstown airport enigma.

As a former Hagerstown resident, I have flown in and out of what was my hometown airport for more than 35 years, when Allegheny, Piedmont and US Air flew daily services to the D.C.-Baltimore and Pittsburgh airports. In those days, needy services they were.

But times have changed. In those days Dulles, National and BWI (formerly Friendship airport) were mere shells of what they are today.

I'd heard National Airport, particularly the North Terminal, referred to as a "rat's nest" while Dulles was often considered a "white elephant."

Not so today. All three airports have ultra-modern and comfortable facilities serving hundreds of domestic departures/arrivals and with flights or convenient connections to major destinations overseas.

I fly widely throughout the United States and cannot think of another metropolis where there are three major modern airports offering multiple domestic and international services — airports that are so easily accessible by road, in particular from this Tri-State area. I use all three airports regularly.

Only two unique features come to mind as I look at this county's relationship with Direct Air.  One never needs to stand in line for more than a few minutes to check in or embark, and parking is free.

A major downside in my opinion are the two destinations.

You could not pay me to visit Orlando; and after two visits to Myrtle Beach for sports events, I certainly have no plans to revisit.

Like Bussard, I do not have a solution for this enormous expanse of real estate with its fine facility and mile-long airstrip, but other carriers are sure to give it a shot, so I wish them and the county officialdom the best of luck.

I know our county officials would welcome suggestions — profitable ones.

Don Taylor
Hedgesville, W.Va.

How will we deal with the national debt?

To the editor:

Buried in Leonard Pitts' column of Aug. 29 ("Newsflash: Congresswoman has a spine") is this little gem: "Seventy percent of us, according to a Gallup poll, think both tax increases and spending cuts ought to be used to reduce the budget deficit."

So what? Is the average U.S. citizen knowledgeable in economics? What were you taught about economics in school? Anything?

Who can explain how money is created and who creates it? What can you tell us about fractional reserve banking? Is the Federal Reserve Bank an agency of the government or a privately owned, for-profit institution? Does the Federal Reserve Bank have any physical reserves and, if so, what kind and how much?

Even the average congressman/congresswoman doesn't understand economics. Most of them don't know Keynes from Mises, Hayek from Friedman or Williams from Sowell. (If they did, America might not be in its present financial predicament.)

By the way, did you know that the U.S. national debt per taxpayer is more than $100,000? Will you be paying that in one lump sum or would you prefer to make principal and interest payments for the next 30 years?

What is that you say? You hope to stick your children and your grandchildren with that bill. Have you no shame?

G.F. Miller

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