Leaving an unpleasant legacy
I guess it is important for a president to leave a legacy ("Immigration push seen as Bush's shot at legacy," Page 1, Wednesday). Personally, I thought simply doing a good job for our citizens was enough and following the will of the people was the supreme compliment. Since President Bush has failed on these two points, he seeks other opportunities. Our country has seen the Great Emancipator, the Great Communicator, the Great Violator and now it seems the Great Placator. How could Mr. Bush believe that his illegal-alien amnesty is supported by this country, its citizens or its institutions?
Working with the lowest public approval rating of any president in history and in concert with the most despised Congress in history, our president seriously believes that appeasing foreign despots and their criminal followers in the United States is going to boost his ratings. I wonder what class at Yale gave him that impression.
Our representatives in Congress are, in theory at least, to represent the will of their constituents. Did Texas tell Mr. Bush that illegals were OK? Did Massachusetts tell Sen. Ted Kennedy that he had free reign to violate their trust? Did Arizona give Sen. John McCain a free pass for his extended stay at the Hanoi Hilton? Our representatives have generally run amuck.
If Mr. Bush and his band of brigands had real strength of conviction, they would submit this issue and most issues to the people for a vote. These "public servants" believe that if they get the amnesty through, all will be forgiven by the election next year. Illegal immigration will be the paramount issue in 2008. Betrayal of the American people will leave a foul taste for many years to come, and those who support amnesty will reap the whirlwind.
Science and faith
In regards to Edd Doerr's letter "Wait a minute," (Thursday):
He takes Robert Wilcox to task for his assertion in "Creationism and intelligent design" (Letters, Tuesday) that evolution is not typical experimental science that can be verified in a lab, as are other scientific theories from magnetic fields to quantum physics. Mr. Doerr's rebuttal is that most scientists accept evolution, so it's science, and faith isn't science.
He's not dealing with Mr. Wilcox's point that evolution only attempts to explain how organisms developed from simple to complex once the raw materials were present. No lab can demonstrate how anything got here at the beginning. Science has its ideas on that, but it amounts to faith just the same because no one has been able to replicate the creation of something from nothing. Starting from nothing and getting something involves, by definition, nonscientific ideas. Science only begins when something with which to experiment is here.
Once anything is here, evolutionists can explain at least to their satisfaction how every living thing came to be. It's that first hurdle that confounds. Science has always confirmed, in labs and common experience, that unless you have something to start with, you're not going to get anything going. It's like Billy Preston sang, "Nothin' from nothin' leaves nothin.' You gotta have somethin.' "
The situation in Pakistan
Wilson John's assumption, in "Unrest in the provinces" (Op-Ed, Friday), that the peace agreement in Waziristan was hammered out under pressure from the army, is baseless because the accord was concluded at the insistence of the tribal chiefs who committed themselves not to allow terrorist activities in Pakistan or in Afghanistan. Of course, military command input is given due consideration in such cases, and to construe it as pressure or dissension only indicates the ignorance of the decisionmaking process.
It is inappropriate to imagine that troop withdrawal was a tradeoff in the accord. Not a single troop has been withdrawn from the region; instead, two more army brigades have been deployed quite recently, raising the troop strength more than 85,000 in a region that is 20 times smaller than Afghanistan, where there are only 40,000 troops in U.S.-led coalition forces.
The peace agreement is a multi-pronged strategy to win the hearts and minds of the people and is aimed at weaning away the locals from the terrorists. This policy is paying dividends as the tribal chiefs have killed more than 300 foreign militants during the last couple of months. There are always some spoilers in such accords, but their designs must not be allowed to get the upper hand. That is exactly the case with the peace agreement.
It is absurd to assume that Taliban are a "strategic tool" for Pakistan. They are killing our people and carrying out suicide bombings in the country.
The U.S. media and Capitol Hill may also ponder why Americans are not succeeding in Iraq despite their heaviest military presence, equipped with the state-of-the-art technology. The situation is getting worse with every passing day. Of course, U.S. troops are doing their best as well-trained professionals, but they are, at present, seemingly helpless in the face of suicide bombings. It is a long war and the trust deficit will only strengthen the enemy.
M. AKRAM SHAHEEDI
Embassy of Pakistan
Comic relief in Annapolis
Wednesday's article about Michael Busch, Maryland House Speaker, was comical ("Busch warns of local aid cuts," Page 1). I suspect Mr. Busch doesn't think of himself as a comedian, but for those of us who pay attention, he is good for a guffaw anytime he opens his mouth.
Take the current budget deficit of $1.5 billion with which the Maryland General Assembly is struggling. The General Assembly created this problem along with former Gov. Parris Glendening, and dear old Mr. Busch was a party to the crime. Now he huffs and puffs about how hard it is to solve the problem he created. Such foolishness is so outlandish, one can only laugh.
This reminds me of the electricity-rate problem the Maryland legislators created by their own actions. Through good media management, they were able somehow to put that one over on the Republican governor at the time. Maryland Democrats look like a clown act, first creating problems and then "fixing" them usually by playing the blame game and doing so right in the glare of center ring of the circus that is Maryland politics. That's pretty good entertainment but not good government by any means.
It also is a laugh that Mr. Busch, a liberal if ever there was one, can be speaker of the house in the most conservative county in Maryland and one that has a conservative county executive. Meetings between these two (if they exist) are probably even greater comedy.
If the Democrats, especially the legislative leadership, were really smart, they would have kept a Republican governor to blame for the $1.5 billion deficit instead of having an interparty fight between Mr. Busch and Gov. Martin O'Malley.
I suppose we Marylanders should be grateful because at least we get a lot of laughs out of our politicians and their antics. Politics in Virginia seem so much more serious. I am not sure it creates better government, but I know it is not as much fun to watch.