Seeing through the smears of right wing

Responding to the letter writers of "People must take back the country," Dec. 19:

It was P.T. Barnum who said, "There's a sucker born every minute." Wow. Has Rush Limbaugh and Fox News done a job on them. We're not all rubes. Some of us can see through right-wing smears.

Marv Tripp

Oakland

Congress better if parties were gone

I was happy to read E.J. Dionne Jr.'s Dec. 20 column about the "Republican civil war" within Congress.

I would love to see the Republican Party in Congress implode, and I say that as a conservative myself. But I would also love to see the Democrat Party in Congress implode. Then, in place of party discipline and arm-twisting unity would be 435 individuals crossing the now nonexistent aisle to form coalitions based on issues, not party identity.

This is a path to the compromise everyone says they want, and it would hold in check the ideologues on both sides.

Congress would have to do away with the seniority system and other party-based advantages that make some members more equal than others, able to reward or punish for the so-called right or wrong vote.


Advertisement

Self-interested members of Congress -- pretty much all of them -- will fight this reform of Congress' infrastructure, but it's doable if the people get behind it.

Karen McNeil

Oakland

Can't blame captain for actions of crew

Why do we blame the president for today's economic slump?

Just think about the job of a ship's captain. He is the one person in charge of the ship. If the ship's crew doesn't do the job properly, the captain will lose control of the ship.

So don't just blame the president for the problems of our country. Replace the crew in Washington. The president will now be able to do his job more effectively.

Arnold Corbett

Fremont

Nation must improve creation on E-power

Kudos for the Dec. 20 editorial on refinery regulations. Refineries go well into willful, criminal neglect and sabotage of monitoring. Along with intense lobbying, results are minuscule fines. Big Oil needs proper integrated regulations.

The ultimate inherent danger supports the point that a deadly accident is a question of when.

A deadly accident, a train wreck of global proportions, has been underway in slow motion. It wasn't known that carbon pollution would cook our planet, but now it is. Oops.

The saying, "but our economy would grind to a halt without fuels they produce" is valid now, but not for long. The clean E-powering is underway. State and air district actions commit the Bay Area to 80 percent reduction in carbon pollution by 2050. Solar, wind and electric vehicles are happening.

Is it morally criminal to needlessly continue a catastrophe-inducing industrial process? It's a golden opportunity and duty to use energy very efficiently, decarbonize our electricity with solar and wind, and E-power everything.

Refineries will cut their emissions by 80 percent. That's the best regulation for inherently dangerous polluters.

Rand Wrobel

Alameda

Build desalination plants instead

The Bay Delta Conservation Plan environmental impact report was released on Dec. 13, with 120 days to make public comment on this report regarding the tunnels project.

The tunnels are projected to cost $25 billion and it may all go down the drain due to the Delta being a very unreliable water source. The western United States has historically suffered from extremely prolonged droughts.

A new plan should be considered wherein the Central Valley agriculture interests would be allowed to continue to get their water according to the current system but require the Southern California water districts to build multiple desalination plants along their coast.

I read that the water exporters are reluctant to pay for the tunnels' mandated conservation measures in the Delta. Therefore, it is likely taxpayers will be asked to fund them with multiple water bonds in the future. This alone should be the reason to stop the tunnels.

Please write to Gov. Jerry Brown to stop the tunnels project and save the Delta. Build desalination plants for our future.

Dick Offerman

Pleasant Hill