Regarding Joshua Lawson's letter from December 4 concerning Barack Obama's "Socialism":
What is the name of the economic system that allows a corporation to be left alone and deregulated when it is raking in record profits, but requires everyone who pays taxes to prop it up or bail it out when times get tough?
And with the bankruptcy "reforms" passed by a GOP-controlled Congress and signed by President Bush, is it really fair that individual Americans aren't allowed this luxury?
America already is socialist, Mr. Lawson. But only when it is for the benefit of corporate America. The rest of us are on our own.
Jason Gober, Gladstone
I was dismayed to read the December 11 letter by the anonymous writer who was dismayed at my letter calling Barack Obama a socialist.
I did not have to look up the word on the Internet. That was done as an illustration for the multitude of people who refuse to pick up books and learn concepts in detail. I spend ample time reading about American history, politics, biology, economics and other topics.
The writer was correct that we have a mixed economy of socialism and capitalism, thanks in large part to the horrific New Deal and the many people since FDR who have tried to reduce the capitalistic tendencies of the country. And it's true that almost every politician has some form of socialist agenda, which only proves my point that Obama is a socialist. Obama has shown that he feels the means of production and distribution of resources should not be in the hands of individuals but the government.
Could Obama turn this country into a socialist utopia? Doubtful, as not even FDR, facing a looming depression, could get everything accomplished that he wanted to. Eerie, we seem to be in the same situation less than a century later. I sincerely hope Obama learns from the mistakes that FDR made, which prolonged the Great Depression.
Joshua Lawson, Kansas City, Missouri
Keep up the good work, David Martin. Perhaps future articles will awaken Kansas City citizens from their apathy about the Municipal Court cartel.
I might suggest a future article tracing the "general fund" dispersals. That is the fund where municipal court fines are processed. One might possibly be of the perception that municipal judges consider that to be one of their "perks," since their functions as municipal judges are the primary sources of revenue for that account.
Which came first, the chicken or the egg? Which became the first necessity, additional judges or the additional traffic fines levied to pay for the additional courtrooms? As more judges are added, it becomes imperative for additional traffic tickets to be written to pay the salaries, and for those "educational junkets" described in your article.
Bill McDonald, Kansas City, Missouri
I don't agree with Kyle Koch on his review of Kredulous' Tears of an Angel. I like Kredulous' record. "Wild" is the best track that Kansas City has had in a long time.
"We the People" a misplaced political track on a party album? Kred's verse is the best of all three of them — it's not my favorite track, but his verse does stand alone from the others. "Mind of Murder" is some of the most difficult wordplay I have heard, and "Nobody Knows" gives me chills. On "It Goes Down," Kred talks about how hard it is for Kansas City artists to be heard — I guess your review proves his point. It's not a party CD but a very well-produced, well-written theme album. You don't get too many of those anymore.
Jeremy Denson, Independence
Correction: A word was omitted from last week's Martin column ("Big Green Monster?"). HNTB designed the $150 million ballroom addition that spans I-670 between Central and Wyandotte streets.
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