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We need a strong diplomat like John Bolton at the U.N.

Letters to the Editor
Published August 4, 2005

Re: The wrong man for the job, editorial, Aug. 2.

I think you are way off base criticizing President Bush for appointing John Bolton as ambassador to the United Nations. During this critical time of war and serious debate over the future of the United Nations, it is doubly important that this position be filled with a strong diplomat like Bolton.

With the Democrats staging a filibuster and not even allowing an up-or-down vote on Bolton, there was not much of a choice left for the president.

Perhaps we need a "bully" in this position at this time. We need someone who will take a stand for our country at a time when it seems popular to build up the likes of France and Germany rather than the strengths of the United States.

I think your so-called facts regarding Bolton are skewed. And if you are not in agreement with this constitutional act, talk to the Democrats who caused this situation in the first place. It was their lack of expedience that required the president to make this recess appointment.

-- Michael King, St. Petersburg

A display of disregard

Re: The wrong man for the job, editorial.

With his underhanded installation of John Bolton as the U.S. representative to the United Nations, President Bush has shown complete disregard for the Senate, including members of his own party, and its time-honored practice of "advise and consent." He's shown contempt for the United Nations, too, by putting forth a representative with a documented history of hostility toward that very organization. He's also shown disdain for the American people, who deserve a real diplomat, and not an embarrassment, in the United Nations.

Bush's claims of "stalling tactics" on the part of Democrats - which he says made this recess appointment necessary - are themselves stalling tactics. First, he needs to be reminded that the process was stalled early on by a GOP senator from Ohio. And if Bush had released all the requested papers to make the Senate's power of advise and consent possible, he would have taken that "stalling" ability away from Democrats. But he didn't, because he knew Bolton's questionable record would prove him unfit for the U.N. post.

-- Patrick Moody, Brandon

U.N. mess should be cleaned up

Re: The wrong man for the job.

John Bolton is exactly the right man to bring change to the dysfunctional United Nations. It is run by too many corrupt bureaucrats who couldn't care less about solving the real issues facing the institution. It is time to clean up this mess, end the reign of Secretary-General Kofi Annan and restore a semblance of effective diplomacy.

-- John Kane, Clearwater

Is this the best we can do?

Re: John Bolton's recess appointment.

It's really no surprise. President Bush was going to install John Bolton at the United Nations one way or another.

All you have to do is look a little deeper than Fox News to find the dirt. Is this the best guy Bush could come up with? Judge for yourself. Here are quotes from Bolton himself: There is "no such thing as the United Nations" and "If the U.N. secretary building in New York lost 10 stories, it wouldn't make a bit of difference."

Now there's a perfect pick for the job!

-- Russ Kelley, Largo

Another reason for them to hate us

As if the United States were not already sufficiently despised in the world, as if we were not perceived as arrogant and offensive enough, President Bush has circumvented the orderly procedure of senatorial advice and consent to appoint John Bolton as our U.N. ambassador.

Bolton embodies the worst of the American spirit: He speaks before he thinks about the consequences of the hostile, hateful and irresponsible things he says, and he has abused his power to promote his own misguided agenda. President Bush, who was so wrong about the "threat" that Iraq posed and who so misjudged what would happen after regime change there, has found a new way to make people around the world hate us and want to hurt us. Osama bin Laden must be thanking Allah for such a gift.

-- Gregory A. Morgan, Lutz

Game violence needs study

Re: The effects of video games on today's kids aren't all bad, July 30.

Steven Johnson uses classic attempts to change the subject in his tortured attempt to make readers think that Sen. Hillary Clinton's concern over the proliferation of violent video games such as Grand Theft Auto is actually an attack on benign games such as Madden and The Sims. His flawed logic is obvious on its face.

The dangerous desensitizing of today's youth to acts of violence, including murder and rape, is already well documented. Young people today are bombarded by graphic images of gratuitous violence far beyond any previous generation. A balanced, objective examination of what these images and messages are doing to our children is both responsible and necessary. Parents increasingly need this help to protect their children from this constant onslaught.

Johnson asks us to believe that a round or two of Grand Theft Auto helps children develop essential computer and planning skills. He fails to inform his readers that Grand Theft Auto actually gives players extra points for shooting police officers. He mentions the images of sex accessible in the game. He fails to mention that these images include graphic depictions of violent rape and murder.

Any argument that would place a game such as Grand Theft Auto in the same league as high school football must be immediately refuted. This study is long overdue. Parents today need this critical information to protect their children from this glorification of violence against all people, including law enforcement and women.

-- Patricia Gerard, city commissioner, Largo

Arthur Teele is the one to blame

Re: Looking for blame in politician's death, July 30.

Arthur Teele only had himself to blame. If he had not done what he did, he would not have been exposed. "Bravo" to the press for uncovering him. In the end, it was his choice to blow his brains out, no one else's.

These people looking for someone to blame need to get a life

-- Jay Dalney, Oldsmar

Adjust tax-free time

Re: Tax-free holiday.

First, I want to say I appreciate the tax-free period, but it's always too early. Most of the time we find out what supplies our child needs after school has already started. Then we find out that some teachers require color-coded notebooks, book covers, special markers, etc.

One idea would be a tax-free time for clothing before the school year begins, and one for supplies once school has started.

-- Darlene Lange, St. Petersburg

[Last modified August 4, 2005, 01:05:20]

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