Here comes Joe Deters

Far Too Long for GOP Absolute power corrupts absolutely. This statement has never been more true than right now for the Hamilton County Republican Party (Porkopolis , issue of Sept. 15-21). It's

Far Too Long for GOP
Absolute power corrupts absolutely. This statement has never been more true than right now for the Hamilton County Republican Party (Porkopolis , issue of Sept. 15-21).

It's ironic that the so-called party of accountability is spinning out of control symbolized by sex scandals, back-room deals and candidates who have questionable-at-best resumes. I don't know what would be worse for this county — a sex scandal saddled prosecutor or a shrewd ex-state treasurer whose former staffers demanded campaign contributions in exchange for the benefit of taxpayers' money?

The fact that they have replaced one problem with what is sure to be another one is a slap in the face to the hard-working taxpayers and voters of this county. They're so determined to hold on to their absolute control that they actually believe this can work, and we can't let them.

Recent news stories on Joe Deters "retribution" threats give us tremendous insight into how this party operates.

They're powerful, organized and want desperately to hold on to power. If anyone is to blame for this, it's the general public who continue to place these officials blindly back into office with no questions asked.

Let's make a difference this Election Day and show the Hamilton County Republican Party the meaning of accountability — let's vote them out. Regardless of one's politics, uncontested power does not work.

Todd Portune has been the only ray of light, and he needs our help in cleaning up this county. One-party rule is not freedom, it's not democracy and it's gone on for too long in Hamilton County.

— Rocky Merz, Pleasant Ridge

Praying for Wisdom
The people running the Bush Administration and campaign are showing the same lack of foresight they produced planning the Iraqi invasion. By throwing out so many negative comments about their opponent, John Kerry, they show how they feel about their own position in this presidential race. Showing us how bad Kerry is sends out a message that they're also and that we're better off with the evil we know.

What is it they feel threatened about, exactly, that makes them come off as cornered rats? They believe that this tactic works because of the success they seemed to have against John McCain in the 2000 Republican primary, when they badgered him with anything they could get their hands on, true or not. The fact that fellow Republican McCain is part of this campaign strategy against Kerry is disgraceful and shows McCain's true character. It's just the way the game is played, so we all might as well accept it. I believe they call that "selling out" or maybe "if you can't beat 'em, join 'em!"

I hope in some way McCain was forced into his partnership with President Bush by some kind of Republican blackmail, because I have more respect for him than to want to believe he actually believes in the strategy the Bush campaign has taken. They actually believe they can trick the American voters into voting for Bush by discrediting any opponent who comes up against them, while offering very little positive things about themselves.

You see, they bank on the negative ads balancing out their own negatives, which scares me. Am I the only one who notices this? I don't believe so. I believe this will all backfire on the party as a whole, and when you add the money that's being made from the Iraqi war by the companies that have been granted contracts through political contacts and the eroding economy that's slowly becoming geared for the well-to-do, the word "Republican" will be exposed as a big con played on the very people who fought and died for the freedom that gave Republicans the right to push their beliefs on us.

Remember the person in high school who thought that by exposing someone else's worst features they could convince you to think they were better and worth your attention? Did you think that was a good person? Now that was fine in high school, but we're looking for a leader, a commander in chief, a president! The game isn't to vote for who we like less — we need to have confidence in our leader.

The only thing the Republicans are talking about is how the president handled 9/11, but wasn't that his job? If he would have done nothing, he would have been replaced. He did what he was told to do, and oil-rich Iraq was just a handy extra, I believe, for whoever needed it to happen.

Is the media in on this sleight-of-hand, negative campaign? Are the poor and middle class, who pay the taxes that buy the bullets and the bombs, not worth more than that? Is anyone in the media ever going to stand up and admit this has to change and start exposing these so-called patriots?

I'd rather have Bill Clinton back with all his bad habits than what seems to be happening in this campaign for president. The true intelligence of the American voter will be known all over the world after this election. I pray that we learn from it.

— Anthony Sturgeon, Covington

Winds of Change
Like a hurricane 545 days in a row, the Iraq war lingers on. The hurricanes crossing the South this year have taken lives and done billions of dollars worth of damage. Businesses shut down, people were out of work and some were short of food, water and even gasoline.

Many long-time residents evacuated ahead of Hurricane Ivan, so stressed out that they couldn't take a third hurricane in a month. But Ivan will pass, the hurricane season will end and the people will come home, a little bit changed forever.

Not so for the people of Iraq. The war has now dragged on for 19 months. That's 545 days, with no end in sight. American war planes still fill the skies, and our tanks and Humvees patrol the streets. There are explosions every day.

Both the Sunnis we came to fight and the Shiites we came to liberate have become resistance fighters, vowing to chase us out of Iraq and to topple a government they see as an American puppet. Like the threat of a hurricane every day, no one knows where the violence will strike next. Fear reigns in Iraq.

While America counts its dead, tragically now over 1,000, so do the Iraqis count their dead, adding over 1,000 to their total in just the last month and 100 in recent days. The people live in constant fear of both Americans and their fellow Iraqis. It's what war brings.

President Bush is hated and scorned by most Iraqis. His team brought war and has failed at peace. Without a plan, he asks for more money and more time to fight on.

For the sake of America, the Iraqis and the world, Americans must say no to Bush and elect John Kerry as our new president. Humans are powerless to stop a hurricane, but we can stop a war. Only Kerry, a man who understands both war and peace, can succeed.

— William Ellerman, [email protected]