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Letters to the editor

On a special visit to the Hollywood sign; L.A.'s City Council battle with Wal-Mart; and Meghan Daum on truth

March 27, 2012
  • Sweepstakes winner Gillian Singletary and her friend Nick Campbell are interviewed next to the Hollywood sign.
Sweepstakes winner Gillian Singletary and her friend Nick Campbell are… (Wally Skalij, Los Angeles…)

What a view!

Re "Getting a close-up with an L.A. icon," March 23

Now that it's a media event when a resident of the city gets permission to visit the Hollywood sign, it makes me sadly wistful for the many times throughout my youth and young adulthood when I didn't have to win a nationwide sweepstakes to get next to the landmark and take in that wonderful view of the city.

I just had to hike up the hillside.

William Campbell

Los Angeles

City Council vs. Wal-Mart

Re "Council votes too late to block Chinatown Wal-Mart project," March 24

So the L.A. City Council was outwitted by Wal-Mart, which secured its permits the day before the council voted against the discount retailer's project in Chinatown.

Councilman Ed Reyes, who proposed the moratorium and claims he is "not anti-business," says he was concerned about the "neighborhood's character" and traffic generated by Wal-Mart. He and his cronies, including Rep. Judy Chu (D-Monterey Park) prove they are out of touch with reality by claiming that Wal-Mart will "demand rock bottom prices."

Isn't this exactly what our community needs most in these tough economic times?

More money in our pockets is a good thing, not to mention all the jobs that will be created plus the increase in tax revenue.

Ron Hansen

Torrance

Once again our City Council has shown why Los Angeles continues to be the most anti-business city in the United States.

What a shot in the arm it would be for Wal-Mart to renovate an existing structure at Cesar Chavez and Grand avenues. But no. Councilman Reyes capitulated to the unions.

Supposedly we've been trying to revitalize our center, not destroy it. Think of all the jobs that would be created.

Why don't we just hang up a sign on the 10 Freeway stating "Businesses stay out"?

Dick Bernstein

Los Angeles

I am ecstatic that some members of the City Council were taking steps to stop Wal-Mart, a company interested only in making more money.

The company has profited from destroying Main Streets, underpaying employees both here and around the world, and depriving those employees of basic benefits, which end up costing the rest of society. When is enough enough?

Please, council members, we can't undo the wreckage Wal-Mart has done, but your efforts to stop this are praiseworthy in the extreme.

Bruce Terrence

Marina del Rey

Re "Picking on Wal-Mart," Editorial, March 23

Let me understand this: a national retailer, which otherwise complies with all ordinances and attempts to open a grocery store in a notoriously underserved market during a recession; then local "leadership" rushes to introduce a last-ditch ordinance that bans large chain stores.

This same retailer provides basic daily commodities such as milk, diapers, baby formula and paper goods at prices less than other stores.

Once open, this store will create tremendous revenue for our cash-starved state. It will provide construction and permanent jobs, occupy a long-vacant location and pay rent and property taxes for years to come.

Though I appreciate The Times' editorial, the lack of incredulity, multiple disclaimers and absence of outrage only serve to validate the City Council proposal as a thoughtful position deserving of equally thoughtful debate.

Tim Mayeda

Yorba Linda

After reading your editorial on Wal-Mart's plans to build a Chinatown store, one thing really sticks out.

As much as I enjoy reading The Times, it's evident to me that you are and always have been a Republican, deeply anti- union newspaper.

I firmly believe that in any issue involving unions, your bias is predictable and glaringly apparent.

Ramona Saenz

Alhambra

Your editorial was right-on regarding Wal-Mart.

I suspect that the unseen but always present unions were behind the City Council's predictable position against the store.

Not only will the community welcome the store, but so will the thousands who work in the Civic Center area.

Anthony Filosa

Los Angeles

Revisiting an epic question

Re "Between truth and fiction," Opinion, March 22

Meghan Daum's article reminds me of early epic poetry, in which the poet tried to tell factual truth while searching for the right word to end each verse in a rhythmical manner.

For writers such as Mike Daisey, who in addition to stating the true details of their account also have to make their stories interesting to attract and engage an audience, the task is very difficult.

Among the most commonly used devices to make a true story exciting is the hyperbolic truth: By exaggerating or inventing testimony or encounters for dramatic purposes, the writer is indeed altering a reality to bring attention to a cause that is often closely related to his or her own ideology.

Berta Graciano-Buchman

Beverly Hills

In reading about Mitt Romney's "Etch-A-Sketch" attitude toward truth and then reading Daum's review of Daisey's ability to rationalize made-up fabrications, I couldn't help but think that Daisey would be the perfect vice presidential running mate for Romney.

Jim B. Parsons

Carpinteria

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