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Dems that don't

Lessenberry, like Conyers, says trying to impeach Bush and Cheney now "would be a very bad idea", ("Conyers' Hard Choice" Metro Times, Dec.5). Conyers has a number of excuses: It's too late, there aren't enough votes, the Congress wouldn't be able to work on anything else like stopping the war, blah, blah, blah.

If there's time enough for Bush to bomb Iran, there's enough time to impeach him. And Conyers never explains why the Democrats pissed away a year after the election and now say it's too late. It's not like they've been busy "stopping the war."

The Democratic Congress had opportunities to cut war funding, but can't get their own party to vote for it. Our own senator, Carl Levin, steadfastly refuses to do so and equates funding the war with supporting the troops.

Like many Democrats, Levin has a "liberal" reputation but is a hawk at heart. He not only votes to fund the Iraq war, he supported Joe Lieberman's anti-Iran resolution, which was tantamount to a declaration of war. So did Hillary Clinton. Levin also supported Bush's bombing of Somalia and Israel's cluster bombing of Lebanon. Levin gets more money from pro-Israel political action committees than any other senator and has been known to rail against Syria because it doesn't recognize Israel.

Conyers says impeachment is a distraction, the most important issue now is electing more Democrats. Yeah right, more warmongers like Hillary Clinton and Carl Levin. —George Corsetti, Detroit


Frogs in a pot

I agree with most of what I read and hear from Jack Lessenberry, so I am especially mystified by his persistent lack of understanding of the impeachment issue. Jack, I don't give a damn how "savvy" you think John Conyers is; this isn't about partisan politics. If you and he think "the Constitution will be trashed" if another Republican takes the White House in 2008, you're just not paying attention. The Constitution is already trashed.

You two are like the frogs in the pot of water you like to use as an analogy. Gentlemen, the pot is at 211 degrees Fahrenheit. Haven't you looked at the thermometer lately? Two books I recommend you both read: The End of America by Naomi Wolf, and The Genius of Impeachment by John Nichols. Maybe the rest of us should read How to Move to Canada by Kreuzer and Bennett. —Patrick Dengate, Ferndale


Setting low standards

I cannot disagree more with Congressman Conyers' stand on impeachment or his reasons for not pursuing it. My belief is that the Democrats, based on their history with this administration, are too cowardly to exercise their responsibility to defend the Constitution. I think this will hurt Democrats in 2008.

Impeachment should have been the first priority for this congress because not acting only validates George Bush's behavior. A new, low standard of acceptable presidential behavior is being set, one which will be exploited by future Republican and Democratic presidents.

Even if the House might not vote to impeach or the Senate to convict, impeachment hearings under oath would document this behavior in the public record. The public shaming would deter future presidents from this behavior. If the public was educated on the facts, there might even be sufficient pressure that even Republicans would be compelled to support impeachment. But, with the Democrats too afraid to pursue it, George Bush and Dick Cheney will leave office, having successfully shredded the Constitution. —Donald B. Patterson, Troy


Postage due

Thank you for Jack Lessenberry's editorial, "Heroes & scoundrels" (Metro Times, Nov. 14).

Respectfully, one thing you didn't mention is of extreme importance to my husband and me, that is: "As it stands now, a handful of people at state party headquarters have a dangerous amount of control over all local elections in the State of Michigan."

The State Parties already have the ability to target mail to 'likely' philosophically aligned conservative and/or liberal voters, thus saving considerable dollars in campaign expenses. Their scam, planned for the Jan. 15 primary, would refresh and update data that they already have.

Currently, "in the spirit of building 'their' farm teams," State Democrat and Republican Parties' use their nonprofit mailing rates to elect local candidates of their choosing. Independent candidates don't have a chance in these local elections backed by State Party leaders.

Just as Michigan taxpayers will have to pay for the Presidential Primary, all postal customers subsidize these political party mailings. —Joyce Fitch, Sterling Heights


Parting shots

Here we go again. Detroit has — once again — been rated dangerous. The dangerous, undesirable and dirty monikers might satisfy former mayors Jeffries and Cobo, resting in their graves, that the Detroit Plan of 1946 is still working in full effect. If you're not familiar with this plan, then perhaps it's time to get a copy and study the language carefully in deciphering its intended goals and outcomes.

It should be obvious that the infrastructure of Detroit was allowed to collapse from mayors Jeffries to Gribbs to Kilpatrick. I personally witnessed much of the decay from the 1950s until April 2006, when I relocated to Minneapolis.

America itself is not a Shangri-La by any stretch of the imagination, but dumping on Detroit began as an in-house production by those who were heavily caste-, class- and racial-minded in engineering more than 60 years of urban erosion on purpose. —Leonard King, Minneapolis


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