Letters from the issue of Thursday, May 1, 2008

Page 2 of 3

So, way to be a coward and take the easy way out on a truly tough issue.
Jehnifer Niklas, sustainability coordinator, ASU Polytechnic

Typical New Times. But bad: On the [Letters page] of the New Times' "eff green" issue, Michael Lacey expresses regret for using the N-word ("Lacey Responds"), while your staff enthusiastically says, "Eff green people." Hmmm? Typical for New Times. But bad.

Don't worry, you have plenty of redeeming qualities and not much competition. Greens will keep reading; we'll keep walking right past the Safeway on Thursday night, where we used to be able to pick up New Times. And when we reach the corner store where the owners still have the balls to carry your paper, we'll buy something inside and pick the paper up on the way out.

But some us feel a bit ripped-off this time around. As for the idea that there is no quick, painless way to make a difference: What?
Lyle Stevick, Phoenix

We have to take the plunge at some point: Screw you! And thank you! The introduction to your issue seems to be telling people not to do anything about global warming, which is horrible. As I read through the articles, I got it. Seeing as how America's sense of entitlement and laziness got us into this, it is very important to let people know that there isn't an "easy button" that will fix this mess.

That doesn't mean we can't use the canvas bags and recycle; if that gets people's feet wet, fine. As long as they know that we all have to take the plunge at some point. This state should be plastered with solar panels, as should every vehicle produced. The wind drag produced as we drive could be used to produce the energy for the vehicle, as well.

All we need to do is make our voices heard — over and over. Until we get our leaders to say "fuck you" to old industry and give funding to new, safe industry.
Patrick Stone, Mesa

H2-whoa!: Regarding Megan Irwin's "Waterlogged," here is approximately how water in the western United States is used: irrigation of crops, 76 percent; power plants for cooling, 13 percent; municipal, 8 percent, industrial, 1 percent; and livestock, 1 percent.

Most of the water used for irrigation is for low-value applications, especially hay. This water-allocation arrangement was started early in the last century when nearly all the people who lived in the West were farmers. Today, there is ample water in the West. The real issue is political: getting the water away from low-value farming crops to higher-value applications.

Name withheld by request


Why is no one doing his job?: Your story ("Employee of the Month," April 10, Sarah Fenske) leaves more questions unanswered than answered:

Why was the disk not admitted into court as evidence? Why did the judge, upon learning that this case was about evidence of discrimination on employee-performance evaluations, not issue a court order forcing the FBI to investigate possible civil rights violations? Why, upon hearing about this case, did the state attorney general or the Department of Administration not open an investigation of possible (the fact that DOT went to court to intimidate other employees makes it appear more than possible) discrimination on employee-performance evaluations and/or civil rights violations?

Why are there no answers to the above questions and why is no one doing the job he or she was hired to do?
Pete Miller, Phoenix

ADOT is rife with pettiness: I read with interest the article concerning Cliff Young's situation with the Arizona Department of Transportation. Having been an employee of ADOT who was terminated (although not sued), I found the pettiness not surprising.

Since the departure of director Mary Peters, the leadership of ADOT has severely suffered. The current leadership is cloaked in the "buddy system" and various "cliques."

In the past five years, I have witnessed:

• A deputy director lose a battle of power and influence with the chief of staff and resign. Her 22 years of service to the department are gone.

• A deputy state engineer with more than 37 years of service terminated because he disagreed with the chief of staff.

• A 19-year IT employee, who basically built the WAN (Wide Area Network, which connects offices statewide) told that his services were no longer necessary because he had the knowledge and potential to access various records.

• A senior engineer confronted with undeniable proof of stalking a female subordinate with 18 years of service. The subordinate has since left state service, while the senior engineer has been promoted.

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