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The danger at Devil's Gate Dam; doctors and the proper role of diagnostic tests; Tim Rutten on a divided America

May 11, 2011

Perhaps the looming precipice exemplified by the bankrupt welfare states in Europe has hardened some minds.

Zack Kircher

Los Angeles

Rutten writes: "A democratic system that disdains compromise has no way forward but the brutality of simple majoritarianism."

If only California could be so lucky. Thanks to super-majority rules for our Legislature to accomplish vital tasks, we are stuck with the brutality of simple minoritarianism.

Pat Ormsbee

Newport Beach

Costly suits

Re "LAPD officers' lawsuits costing city millions," May 8

After he collected a $3.8-million settlement from the city of Los Angeles in a lawsuit over workplace retaliation, Officer Robert Hill shed some crocodile tears when he said: "Here I was a public servant suing the city, basically suing the taxpayers who I was committed to protecting. What I really wanted was for the names of the people who had harmed me to be on that lawsuit. I wanted the money to come out of their pockets. I felt bad that the wrong people were paying, but it was the only recourse I had as an officer."

This is a strong testimonial for changing the law to give the city immunity from such lawsuits. Public employees should only be allowed to sue and collect from the individuals who harmed them, not the taxpayers.

John Fessler

Chino Hills

Rail stop

Re "MTA, stop in Leimert Park," Column, May 6

L.A. County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas and others are making a strong case for a station on the Crenshaw/LAX light-rail line at Leimert Park.

There is local precedent for adding a station, as a Farmdale station near Dorsey High School was added to the Expo Line Phase 1. The Farmdale station addition is primarily for safety reasons. The Leimert Park station would primarily be for economic development reasons consistent with transit-oriented development best practices.

It remains to be seen whether the Metropolitan Transportation Authority will see the logic of this choice and make a hard but necessary decision.

Philip S. Hart

Los Feliz

Steel curtain?

Re "Losing Superman," Opinion, May 6

So Superman may renounce his American citizenship. Big deal. A few years ago he was dead, and that didn't stick. Let the story play out and see what happens.

John Sherman


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