Letters from the week of September 30, 2004

 King John

Today, a baseball tax; tomorrow, the world: Kudos to John Dougherty for his superb column about the second dictator ousted this year -- Jerry Colangelo ("Please, It's About Time!" September 9).

Like Saddam Hussein, Jerry exemplifies arrogance to the highest degree, and he has the characteristics of a Middle Eastern dictator. Yes, he pushed through a baseball tax that voters opposed. He built America West Arena with no regard to fans whose views were obstructed with rafters in front of their seats. He did away with shuttle service between Bank One Ballpark and Park Central Mall.

But he still has his defenders (just turn to KTAR-AM 620). Lately, however, they've been rendered mute regarding Jerry.

Incidentally, this same bunch lauded Jerry for buying a World Series championship, yet knock George Steinbrenner for the multimillions he's spent on the New York Yankees.

To Jerry and his followers: How does it feel to eat crow?
Kurtis Wolf, Glendale

Colangelo's kind of town: I've been a fan of John Dougherty's work for a long while now (I did graduate work at ASU between 1985 and 1990 before moving to Chicago in 1996). So Dougherty was the first person I thought of when I got my copy of the Chicago Tribune last week and saw a puff piece by Sam Smith (the paper's NBA beat writer) paying tribute to Jerry Colangelo for having "built" Bank One Ballpark along with Phoenix's downtown.

One does expect a certain deference to Mr. Colangelo's antecedents in Chicago's south suburbs, but this was way over the top. Of course, I had to revisit some of your pieces on Mr. Colangelo's machinations to neutralize the disgust brought on by the Sam Smith article's obsequiousness.
Hari Chengalath, Chicago

A 10 on the non-crapola scale: That was a great story on money man Jerry Colangelo. How long does it take for people to get what's going on? The man is so greedy he has to destroy unspoiled desert, too! Shame is not in his genes.

Thanks for your work, John Dougherty. You are the only serious, professional, non-crapola writer in the Phoenix area. Compared to you, the others are 1.5 on a scale of 10.
Rosemary Holusha, Phoenix

One down, one to go: Finally, John Dougherty gets to dance on Jerry Colangelo's proverbial grave. It's high time! Too bad he wasn't able to dance on the grave of old Joe Arpaio as well. Dumb-ass voters in this county will never get it. I just hope that the county attorney or the U.S. attorney will wake up before Joe kills any more innocent people. It's a small wonder he didn't kill anybody in that raid on the upscale neighborhood in which his men tear-gassed the house and burned the puppy to death.

Regarding Colangelo: Dougherty always told it like it was about Jerry. Colangelo used other people's money to get his projects done. And he lost other people's money to get his projects done. He was a lousy businessman, and the Arizona Republic has been spinning all this crap about how he built downtown. Well, look at it! Downtown is a joke. There is no downtown to speak of, except for the ballpark and America West Arena.

What Dougherty says is true: It's time for this loser businessman to get out of the way and let the real players turn Phoenix into a world-class city. It's obvious that Jerry was never up to the job. But if his benefactors hadn't called his bluff, Jerry would still be sitting in his Bank One Ballpark office calling the shots. Wimpy Phoenix Mayor Phil Gordon never would have done anything to stop him! That was obvious when Gordon -- supposedly a progressive Democrat -- backed that Ivy League-educated Neanderthal Andy Thomas (Joe Arpaio with a brain) the other day. I will never vote for Gordon again, I can promise you that!
Juan A. Garcia, Phoenix

Deihl Us Out

Ain't that a kick in the head: Thanks to New Times for exposing the Deihl of the century. Joe Deihl is quite a success story, all on the backs of the gullible consumers he took in ("The Real Deihl," Robert Nelson, September 16).

Isn't it amazing how so many rich Phoenicians made their money in questionable enterprises? But I guess that is true all over the country. So many snake-oil salesmen are able to trick consumers because we all want an easy cure for every ailment, every potential danger. We are willing to believe anything!

Thanks for acting like the New Times we all know and love and kicking somebody who's richly deserving in the head.
Paula Anne Smith, Phoenix

Joe dirt: Your article on the "snake-oil salesman" and his wife and son reminds me of the New Times of old. It was a great read, but I'm not sure whether to laugh or cry.

It's hardly comforting to know these Deihls are welcomed with open arms and that people support another local Joe. What a deal!
Sherry Olson, via the Internet

Into the Vitamist-ic: I'm mentioned in "The Real Deihl" as a source of a medical opinion regarding the product Vitamist. I would like to clarify a few things in the article.

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