MEMORIES OF STEVIE’S
Thank you for the memories about Stevie’s Latin Village. I remember during the 1960s my parents would go to Stevie’s for occasional Saturday night dates. They would get all dressed up in their finest, get a babysitter for us, and go out for a good time. Mom always bragged about the veal scallopini. She would also bring us back the little cocktail swords that held the garnishments for their drinks... certainly considered very unsafe by today’s standards. Thank you again for taking me down memory lane.
TEA PARTY AND THE TIMES
Before you accuse Tea Party members of using racist language directed towards members of Congress, you might want to find out if it actually happened [see “Springfield hosts a calm, conservative Tea Party,” April 8]. A conservative blogger has offered $10,000 for any video evidence that this occurred. The reward has gone unclaimed. Using the congressmen as a source is a copout.
It used to be that the three most important words in journalism were “confirm,” “confirm” and “confirm.” It now appears that the three most important words for the Illinois Times are “propagandize,” “propagandize” and “propagandize.”
You also might want to add that Republican offices have been vandalized and that SEIU members assaulted a black Tea Party member in St. Louis last August. While you’re at it, you can talk about the Black Panther members who threatened white voters in Philadelphia in 2008.
DUBIOUS HONOR RECIPIENT
On April 8 your renowned academic institution, the University of Illinois, honored Rafael Correa, president of Ecuador, with the 2009 Alumni Award for exceptional achievement.
This award, according to the university, is given annually to a former international student who has contributed significantly to mankind, the sciences, the arts or human welfare.
But the university ignores the real achievements of this alumnus.
Rafael Correa has fostered a Higher Education Act by which culture, education and science will be controlled according to the government’s political interests. This law is heavily loaded with provisions that contradict the constitution and will rob the universities of their autonomy as well as bureaucratize higher education. This law will muzzle higher education that does not submit to the government’s designs.
The University of Illinois should know that the situation in the past three years has worsened in almost every aspect. Crime and insecurity have risen, and there is more unemployment. Economic growth is diminishing fast, the fiscal sector is chaotic and Ecuador has lost financial international credibility.
Freedom of speech and liberty of the media have been attacked relentlessly, in ways such as threatening journalists and intimidation of anyone who thinks differently or is in opposition. Moreover, Correa’s government is involved in multiple corruption scandals and has been charged with having links to terrorist groups and drug cartels.
Jobs is an issue of great importance. Tax-paying, working citizens are the backbone of the nation. A 10 percent unemployment rate is unacceptable, an irresponsible and unfortunate course of the last 20 or more years of relocation of jobs in the U.S. to countries where workers have no protection.
The U.S. has a very sound historical precedent, a blueprint and plan already worked out by some of the wisest citizens of the nation. President Roosevelt and the leaders of his time are credited with these accomplishments. There is no sound reason why we, in these times, cannot establish a job creation program at least equal to that of the 1930s. We have much greater resources than they did. We only have to recognize that the reason that progressive job creation is not taking place right now, when 10 percent or more of workers are unemployed, is that politicians and others are using the specter of “socialism” to scare people. Socialism did not ship off millions of jobs to third world countries, did not fire other millions of workers in the U.S. in order to fatten the bank accounts of the wealthy, and it is certainly not responsible for the billions of dollars given to the top one percent of the economic pyramid in tax reduction plans. It is time to put together a real jobs creation plan.