some criminals are having themselves a party

From yesterday's New York Times, letters to the editor:

To the Editor:

Re "Laura Bush Defends Gala in Time of War and Disaster" (news article, Jan. 15):

While I agree with the first lady's assertion that "there's a symbolic aspect of the inauguration that ... you never want to - for any reason - cancel it," I think that she and the president are missing the real point.

It's not the inauguration that people are shaking their heads at. It's the fact that while this administration asks so much of our citizens, it is unwilling or unable to demonstrate any moral leadership during this time of war and natural disasters.

How refreshing it would be to see a scaled-back inauguration, with a significant portion of the money raised for the celebrations going to charities that desperately need additional funds. Such an action would, at the least, indicate that the president and his friends were aware that we are living in difficult times.

We, the people, are being asked to be patriotic, support our troops and increase our charitable contributions, while our leaders are being asked ... to party. That's the issue.

Jacqueline F. Dorfman
New York, Jan. 15, 2005

To the Editor:

Re "The Sophomore Slump," by Ronald C. White Jr. (Op-Ed, Jan. 15): If President Bush wants to make his second Inaugural Address historic, I have some simple advice: Include the phrases "I was wrong," "we miscalculated," and "I'm sorry."

Robert J. Inlow
Charlottesville, Va., Jan. 15, 2005
We constantly hear how this party's 40-million-dollar tab is being picked up by "private contributions". We're supposed to be happy that we're not paying for it. But private contributions means industry and corporations. They expect much in return, and we can be sure they'll get it.


Kyle_From_Ottawa said...

You might be happy to know that there isn't such a thing as an inauguration here. Usually the winner has a little party after their declared the winner on election night (at party, not taxpayer expense) and thats it.

Oh, that's the other thing you'll notice here. By 10pm on election night, we *know* who won without a doubt. A seat or two might flip before the morning, but there's no hanging chads or such.

Actually, we don't even use voting machines in federal elections (though some cities do at a municipal level). It's just a simple paper ballot where you mark the X beside your name. You also only vote for one thing on a federal election day, your MP. There's no choice for president, governor, senator, proposition X, etc. Generally, you can be in and out of a polling station in 15 minutes.

Kyle_From_Ottawa said...

Sorry, "beside your name" meant "beside your choice".

laura k said...

Apparently all the world's democracies but one can figure it out.

Kyle_From_Ottawa said...

There’s something jarring about "this inauguration is about freedom" while being surrounded by 13 000 troops, anti-aircraft batteries, spy satelites and F16/F18 flyovers.


laura k said...

We have always been at war with Eastasia...