Living with result of Arab Spring

The recent editorial about the assumption of dictatorial power by Mohamed Morsi in Egypt was right on.

This is the Arab Spring in full bloom. Now that Egypt is the lead player in peacemaking again, it does not bode well for the region. Certainly religious minorities should be very concerned.

Those who wish for a lasting peace between Israel and her neighbors must be troubled as the more rational and pragmatic Egyptians are being squeezed out. Those who greeted the overthrow of Hosni Mubarak with enthusiasm should be careful of what they wish for.

Gil Stein

Aptos

Arrogant politicians get it wrong again

Mary Nichols, the head of the California Air Resources Board, has declared California's first cap and trade auction a success.

Nichols is delusional to call the auction a success, when under California law energy companies were forced to purchase the emission allowances at the minimum price set by Nichols and the politicians. It did successfully show that our state politicians have found a way to disguise new taxes as an auction, without voter consent.

As the politicians continually jack up the price of these allowances, they can collect billions to squander on their pet projects, including Gov. Jerry Brown's idiotic bullet train.


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These taxes will be passed through to consumers via higher energy prices, and in a few years we'll see skyrocketing prices of gasoline and electricity, causing more businesses and jobs to leave the state.

Contrary to the politicians' claim that California is leading the world, the sad truth is that California is the poster child for getting it wrong, the result of arrogant politicians who don't need to care about the consequences of their actions.

Dick Patterson

El Cerrito

Getting facts straight about Middle East

The author of a Nov. 23 letter requires correction of his anti-Israel opinions:

Israel withdrew from Gaza, and the Palestinians have been firing rockets into Israel from Gaza ever since. Recently, an Arab with ties to Hamas set off a bomb that blew up a bus in Tel Aviv.

Israel controls the West Bank since the armistice of 1968 because there has been no peace agreement.

Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has invited Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to have direct negotiations without preconditions, and he has refused.

Israel has checkpoints and a fence on the border of Israel to deter Palestinian terrorism. Israel has a boycott of Gaza only for armaments, and Gaza also has a southern border with Egypt. The Palestinians in the West Bank have a better life and more rights than the people living in the many Muslim and Arab countries of the Middle East.

Norman Licht

San Carlos

Israel has every right to defense

A Nov. 22 letter is a fictional revision of events that Hamas is circulating all over the Internet and media, yet nothing is further from the tragic truth.

Hamas, a radical Islamist group, seized Gaza in a bloody coup after Israel evacuated the strip and handed over the control to the Palestinian Authority.

From its inception, Hamas declared its intention to destroy the Jewish state and acted accordingly by launching more than 8,000 rockets on Israel citizens in the last seven years. The status between these sides is an undeclared war.

Israel government is within its right to defend its citizens from a hostile enemy, and the U.N.'s Palmer report reaffirmed its right to blockade Gaza, and prevent Hamas from arming themselves. Yet, Israel provides free of charge 70 percent of Gaza's electricity, fuel and life necessities, which most media outlets elect to omit.

I wonder how the letter writer would have reacted if her neighbor kept throwing rocks on her family and house continuously, while the police ignored it and stood idle.

Sam Liron

Foster City