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Look in Corporate Mirror

July 06, 2002

Most who are playing political blame games over the flood of corporate fraud and Wall Street corruption have no moral ground to stand on, simply because it was all but lost by the social erosion of the "me generation."

Many former "anti-establishment" baby boomers have evolved into the excessive political and corporate establishments of today--shamelessly promoting their selfish interests, dishonesty and superficial extremes as they went along.

Indeed, before the finger pointers cast more nets of condemnation, they should first check out the rise of lost jobs, victimized investors and shrinking pension funds in their own backyards--then take a long look in the mirror.

Daniel B. Jeffs

Apple Valley

*

So, the Bush-Cheney duo want corporate reform in the wake of their pals' fraudulent behavior ("Business Reform on Bush Agenda," June 29). I had a good laugh, then the smile went away. Will this pair suddenly feel the pain of the thousands in the rank and file now without jobs because of corporate criminality and greed?

Will the people again become the gullible sheep while conservative leaders secretly enrich the protected few and force an already beleaguered middle class to pay higher taxes to offset losses caused by corporate offshore accounts? Are we to believe that two people so hopelessly steeped in the capitalist shame game will effect real change in corporate morality?

The credentials these two hold tend to belie their gaze of righteousness and the justice they might appear to seek. Vice President Dick Cheney chaired a company being investigated by the SEC and is obstructing the full release of secret Enron notes vital to administration energy policy. And President Bush, inspired by family tradition, sucked up corporate money from greed-enraptured energy barons from the beginning of his political career.

Why do I feel that anything leaving their lips is empty patronage void of ethical substance?

Stephen Pitt

Moreno Valley

*

It is hilarious to hear Republicans claim that the corporate scandals are a nonpartisan problem. I'm sorry, but this issue is probably the defining one when it comes to differentiating the two parties. For the last century, the Republicans have cast their lot, and their votes, with big business. They have pushed for deregulation at every turn. The Bush administration, packed with CEOs and under the thumbs of some very powerful corporate special interests, is the epitome of this tradition.

The Republicans and their accomplices in the media are quick to point out that big business donates to Democrats as well as Republicans, though the facts show that the GOP gets the lion's share of its largess. This, however, is a red herring. It's not who gives money to a politician, it's how he or she votes that makes the difference. If the media let Bush and the GOP weasel out of their responsibility for this mess, they should be ashamed of themselves.

Daniel B. Leahy

Santa Barbara

*

We small investors stand by helplessly while corporation after corporation admits dishonest bookkeeping and outright thievery. And we wonder, why isn't our government punishing these executives? Of course we know why.

Sorry--a slap on the wrist isn't enough. Five years or more without early parole in federal prison might dissuade future dishonesty in other companies.

But where are the money managers of the mutual funds and pensions? Their records look bad to their clients because of their losses and will cause huge withdrawals. They have the power we little people don't have--why aren't they using it to prosecute and imprison the executives of Enron, WorldCom, Global Crossing, Rite Aid and the others who are admitting to keeping false records? Something's rotten on Wall Street!

Jean Desmond

Rancho Palos Verdes

*

Bush's sudden "outrage" and sanctimonious demands for an inquiry into the WorldCom debacle confound me. He uttered not a peep when his Enron buddies bilked millions.

Laurie Levin

Pacific Palisades

*

At first I opposed Bush's proposed Department of Homeland Security. After reading about so many scandals I've reconsidered, provided the DHS, in addition to fighting terrorism, would be set up to defend us against the even more immediate and devastating threats to America's security--corporate greed and arrogance.

Steve Boulanger

Irvine

*

In a time of unprecedented corporate greed, how gratifying to read about Rob Morones, a Kmart store manager in Show Low, Ariz. (June 28). Here is a man who at great personal risk and sacrifice single-handedly kept his store open for weary firefighters during the state's worst blaze. Yes, he is to be commended. But beyond that, top Kmart executives should immediately elevate him to company spokesman to replace Martha Stewart. He is a stellar example of what is best in an employee and a human being.

Suzanne Harris

Los Angeles

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