Letters: And now, ‘the rest of the story’

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webmaster | 04/06/12

I try as hard as possible not to write letters to the editor. But when a topic such as Jim Glynn’s “Education: The power to make or break” appeared I knew I would have to respond. I was relieved when Michael Pistoresi’s letter appeared and thought I could just drop it; his letter was so very correct. Suffice it to say, this Sunday morning when I woke and couldn’t get Jim’s piece out of my head, sentences started forming, I knew I needed to go to my laptop.

Jim Glynn is an excellent writer. He clearly makes his point and you even want to believe you have been informed concerning his topic. But Jim almost never gets to the Paul Harvey, “Now for the rest of the story,” part.

Jim’s training and life study must be in psychology and/or political science. These disciplines, often being subjective, skewing an idea, even without trying, can be a problem. The caution here is to bring a balance to every topic; do not bring my agenda unless I clearly am willing to state it. Don’t just bring one side of the story.

For instance, Jim writes, “Community colleges were free, open-door institutions; state universities did not charge tuition but had low fees.” Really? Nothing is free, save the grace of God. Someone pays. Oh, the taxpayer. And maybe the taxpayer now knows he is not getting his money’s worth. Write about this Jim.

Also write about the 14 UC executives who sent a letter to Gov. Brown about eight months ago asking him to not cap their retirement at $250,000 per year. Wow! They need more than $20,000 a month to retire? How much is enough? Who pays? Greed, by any other name, still smells the same. What? Do they need to buy an island somewhere?

Write about how 20-30 years ago, most college professors taught two or three classes and how most now only teach one. Has their compensation gone down? I’m curious.

Write about how struggling, sacrificing students have become some of the greatest persons in our society and the world. “Easy Street,” the song from “Annie,” is a great tune, but at the end of the day there is no Easy Street, except maybe for government employees in work and in retirement. Not many government employees have a real sense of the need for efficiency. Those that do become real frustrated sooner or later as they see the waste around them.

Write about how there is coming an “us versus them” society in the near future. The “us” being those that will use their vote to elect politicians that will promote their financial extreme well being and power, versus the “them,” that are the common taxpayers, that will not be able to carry the cost of our growing government. Downsize? Not even!

Write about all the college-educated persons that have done terrible things to their students, friends, families, colleagues, investors and so forth. College is not the answer. It doesn’t change the hearts of men! College educations may “maintain our position” in the global economy, but we are more than that and must be.

There is a Persian saying, “It’s like sliced bread, no matter how thin you slice it, there will always be two sides.” Write about it. Both sides!

I remember my third grade teacher, Mrs. Short, saying, “Don’t believe anything you read, and only half of what you see” and “Be skeptical.” I remember thinking for some time, how stupid. Not anymore!

Jon Barsotti,
Madera

$4.19 gas price now, $.16 then

On March 3, while getting gasoline at the corner of Gateway Drive and Yosemite Avenue, right next to Valley Feed, the gas price was $4.19 a gallon, and it brought me some memories of gasoline prices were while I was living in Laredo, Texas, in 1946.

I was 15 years old in 1946, and while playing baseball in the American Legion League Imade the All-Star team, and went to play in Austin, Texas, against teams from all over Texas. We got there Friday morning, July 20, 1946, and in the afternoon they took us, the whole All-Star team, to go visit the state Capitol building there in Austin.

That night, July 20, it was raining and the next day, July 21, (which was my 16th birthday) we went to the ballpark, and they were pouring gasoline that was only 18 cents a gallon to dry the field. They don’t do that any more because it’s against the law. Now they have blowers and other equipment.

Also I had an uncle, Leo Trevino, who had a restaurant, pool hall, bar and gas station in 1936 there in Laredo, and gas was 16 cents a gallon. That’s how I remember all those gas prices.

Eddie Chapa,
Madera

 

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