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Letters to the Editor - Oct. 16

October 16, 2012

Suns, not citizens, should pay for stadium

To the editor:

Regarding the proposed baseball stadium for downtown Hagerstown: A restaurant or a movie theater is a business. If the owners can make money, they stay in business.

A school, park or road is normally owned by the public. The government, via the taxpayer, pays for these facilities for use by the public.

The Hagerstown Suns are a business owned by private individuals.

The government would never pay for a new building for a restaurant owner. The government would never pay for a new theater for a cinema owner. Nor should the taxpayer fund a new stadium for owners of a baseball team.

Public money should not be spent on private businesses. Period.

Andrew Vecchio
Hagerstown


Peter Principle in play in Washington County

To the editor:

I was astonished to see the headline, ‘You can’t make this stuff up’ emblazoned across the top of the front page of Sunday’s Herald-Mail (Oct. 7). I thought it was a pretty brash statement coming from a (usually) sedate newspaper. Then I read the article, and found the headline to be aptly put.

The story put me in mind of the Peter Principle.

The Peter Principle is a belief that in an organization where promotion is based on achievement, success and merit, that organization’s members will eventually be promoted beyond their level of ability; that is, employees tend to rise to their level of incompetence.

It was formulated by Dr. Laurence J. Peter and Raymond Hull in their 1969 book “The Peter Principle,” which also introduced the “salutary science of hierarchiology.”

This corollary principle holds that in a hierarchy (bureaucracy), members are promoted so long as they work competently. Eventually, they are promoted to a position at which they are no longer competent (their “level of incompetence”) and there they remain, being unable to earn further promotions. Peter’s Corollary states that “in time, every post tends to be occupied by an employee who is incompetent to carry out its duties” and adds that “work is accomplished by those employees who have not yet reached their level of incompetence.”

John Cable
Hagerstown

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