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The race for California governor; a subway to the Westside; more problems at the Department of Children and Family Services

November 02, 2010

Pondering the vote

Re "Pulling out all of the stops," Nov. 1

I still don't feel good about my choices for governor.

I thought Jerry Brown was a disappointment the first time around. He had no problem with the fact that people were taxed out of their homes and tried to see to it that the condition continued by opposing Proposition 13.

Meg Whitman really makes me nervous. Anyone who would spend more than $140 million to buy a job that pays a six-figure salary is probably not playing with a full deck of cards. Her face has been in mine for such a long time that I just can't trust her. I wonder what she's after.

We have a terrible choice to make. Heaven help us.

Clyde Hammett


Once again I find myself perplexed by the content-less, uninformative campaign ads to which we are repeatedly subjected. I wish someone would explain to me what those who are susceptible to these ads find persuasive and how many repetitions it takes for them to become persuaded.

Everyone I know decides fairly early in the campaign for whom and for what issues they will vote. Are those at whom these ads are directed so confused they need to be browbeaten all the way to the polling place?

Emil Berkanovic

Los Angeles

Re "Gov. Jerry Brown was a young man on his own path," Oct. 30

The Times neglects to mention the most damaging action Brown took as governor. He signed legislation that allowed public employees to unionize, and today we are reaping the harvest of that policy.

We need a manager for governor who will stand up to the unions and get the state back to a firm financial position.

Ronald A. Rosien

Los Angeles

Warming to their subject

Re " Valero has vital stake in Prop. 23," Business, Oct. 31

As a nation, we've grown and prospered because of dirty energy's low price and abundant supply. The low price, however, was only possible because the substantial environmental, health and national security costs were never internalized in the price.

Gradually increasing the price of dirty energy to more closely match its true cost would result in exactly what Valero's chief executive, Bill Klesse, says is an "electric car mandate." It would also result in a de facto renewable energy and efficiency mandate. Changing to a more efficient society using renewable energy is prudent. Doing so under our own control, rather than that of oil and coal companies, is smart.

Paul Scott

Santa Monica

The writer is vice president of Plug In America.

Proposition 23 suspends AB 32 (the greenhouse gas emissions reduction bill) until unemployment drops to 5.5% or less for a full year.

I downloaded monthly unemployment rates in California from January 1976 through today to see how many times our unemployment rate has dropped below this standard and how long the low rates were sustained. In those years, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate has dipped below 5.5% for at least four consecutive quarters only three times.

So, in all these 44 years, this Orwellian proposition could have allowed greenhouse gas emissions to be reined in only a few times for a few months.

Christine M. Rodrigue


The slow road to legal marijuana

Re "Experimenting with pot," Editorial, Oct. 30

Though the editorial brings up several valid objections to the passage of Proposition 19, the reasons given are not sufficient to slow the progress of legalization. Almost all inroads against unjust laws (and prohibition is unjust) are made by chipping away at the oppressive measures. Headway is being made, and the chipping is happening slowly, bit by bit.

First is the legalization of medical marijuana in several states. Second is the hoped-for passage of legalization for all adults in California. Third, though it is true that it will still be illegal by federal standards, the progress being made should eventually spread to federal law.

Just as with civil rights and women's suffrage, the progress being made must not be slowed by problems that can later be corrected.

Milton B. Rouse

Dana Point

In his Oct. 31 letter to the editor, Hector Villagra of the ACLU states that Latinos are arrested more often than whites for possession of marijuana, and therefore, the drug should be legalized.

There is a simple remedy for this situation: Don't be in possession of or use marijuana, and you will not be arrested for doing so.

Anne Grogan


Will the Wilshire subway work?

Re "Wilshire route picked for subway," Oct. 29

The recently approved Westside subway is slated to cost $5.5 billion. CityCenter, Las Vegas' latest mega-development, cost about $11 billion to build and has been a financial disaster.

These figures reflect our nation's distorted spending priorities: "bling" for the rich over practical investment for the public.

Fred Smoller


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