President should resign; country would survive

Re editorial, April 23

If Vice President Dick Cheney and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld should resign, why not President Bush? Is he not ultimately responsible for the series of bad decisions that have left the country far worse off than it was in 2001? I am sick of all the Bush critics and apologists lacking the spine to address this central issue. The president has been incompetent, has allegedly violated our laws and has advocated policies to reward his corporate donors at the expense of the public interest. He should either resign or be removed from office.

This would not destabilize the country because our founding fathers provided for such a process when they drew up the Constitution.

What does threaten the fabric of the nation is a press corps that will not speak truth to power, a Congress and a minority party that will not assert themselves to check the power of the executive, and a people who are distracted, ill-informed and ill-equipped to make thoughtful decisions to help govern and lead this country. For the sake of the nation, Bush must go.

Ravi Mahalingam
Los Angeles

Despite your editorial, President Bush will continue on with his near-neurotic compulsion to cling to his comfort cushions, Cheney and Rumsfeld.

After all, Bush's mentor, Karl Rove, will no longer be immediately at his elbow. Dr. Fix-All will be away attending to Bush's greatest fear: the election of a Democratic Congress and the specter of impeachment soon to follow. Therefore, we can expect an even closer association between Rove and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, with its bulging moneybags, in the months to come.

Jacqueline Kerr
Glendale

CIA officer may have followed her conscienceRe " April 22

I wish I could nominate former CIA officer Mary O. McCarthy for the Nobel Peace Prize for informing the American press about this administration's secret, illegal torture chambers (call them what they are). McCarthy put this country's honor, integrity and the rule of law above her own personal concerns.

I found the comments by "one U.S. official" particularly heinous: "When liaison countries agree to do things with us and we can't keep that secret, that is damaging. They're much less willing to cooperate." Why should other countries want to cooperate with our unlawful "things"? Ah, yes, for the money. Brava and blessings, Ms. McCarthy. Thomas Jefferson would be so proud.

Melody M. Suppes
Palos VerdesA senior CIA officer is fired and could face criminal prosecution for following her conscience to expose illegal overseas torture prisons, and the leaker in chief reveals the confidential identity of a CIA operative for political purposes with impunity. In a just society, McCarthy would be recognized as a patriot and President Bush would be impeached as a traitor.

John Weinell
Dana PointAs I recall, when it was first revealed that there was a secret network of CIA prisons overseas, the government didn't acknowledge that such facilities existed. If this were the case, then how could the CIA fire an agent for revealing something that never existed?

Bernard Rapkin
Los Angeles

Taxpayers get the billRe April 23

There is nothing "unintended" by these costs; they are plain to anyone who thinks in the larger picture. Our industrial elite exports our manufacturing base to China and India but, in order to get the (cheaper) goods back, they must pay for the transportation to get them to our stores.

But who pays for the port expansion, the pollution, the roads and rails and trucks and more pollution? Certainly not the industrialists who reap the original profits. The taxpayer will pay twice for the privilege: once to lose the job that went overseas, and again to pay for the infrastructure to re-import the products.

Maude Ham
Burbank

GOP's woesAn April 24 article on the quotes Stanford research fellow Bill Whalen as saying that President Bush might improve his situation by starting to behave more like Moe Howard of the Three Stooges.

Boy, the jokes really do write themselves, don't they?

Michael Schlesinger
Sherman Oaks

Looking for relief at the gas pumpRe April 23

I'm surprised that no one seems to be suggesting the easiest way to cut oil consumption: reimpose and enforce a 55-mph speed limit. With President Bush insisting we're at war for our very survival, and troops risking their lives, is this too great a sacrifice to ask? Enforcing a lower speed limit might put a dent in the crazy, gas-guzzling, carbon dioxide-spewing horsepower race that plays such a large part in American car marketing.

Lorenzo Semple Jr.
Los AngelesHere are a couple of ideas the federal government could quickly implement to provide immediate relief at the pump: Cut gas taxes, release oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve and permit oil drilling offshore and in Alaska, where we know there is plenty of oil.

I don't care if rich liberals living in mansions in Malibu or Santa Barbara have to gaze at an oil derrick on the horizon occasionally. Obviously, over the long term, we are going to have to transition to alternative sources of energy, not because of liberal claptrap over global warming but because fossil fuels are a finite resource.

Geoffrey C. Church
Los AngelesWhy is it that when the price of oil goes up, the price of gas that we see at the pump rises at the same time? How long does it take for the oil bought at lower prices to actually get to the refinery and your local gas station?

Why aren't we paying a proportionately lower gas price that comes from crude pumped weeks ago? It certainly feels as if we consumers are getting taken and the new oil barons are laughing all the way to the bank.

Jeff Siroty

West Hollywood

Deal would be shortsightedRe April 24

I am a nurse at the veterans hospital in West Los Angeles and a disabled veteran. Reading that the Army is about to sell our land to wealthy developers is a slap in the face of every veteran. Perhaps the Army doesn't want its troops to see what may await them in the near future.

This land was donated to veterans; little by little it is being taken away. Will our veterans now have to look up to clean, modern towers filled with affluent citizens looking down on them? Use the land for generations to come, not for the money today.

Joseph Moore
Quartz Hill

Another shortsighted action is about to happen. Prime real estate is set to go on the auction block, an action that overlooks the fact that there are about 17,000 soldiers wounded in Iraq, half of whom are unable to return to active duty and who will need long-term medical and psychological treatment once they come home. The facilities of the nearby Veterans Affairs Medical Center and the UCLA Medical Center afford the best possible medical attention for these returning veterans. Don't let this precious piece of property pass into the hands of developers who are interested only in enhancing their profits while squeezing out those most deserving.

Sydell Stokes
Valencia

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