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Letters to the Editor 

Week of Wednesday, June 8, 2005

Toady Is as Toady Does

Any time we can get the word "lickspittle" into the paper, we're happy: Bravo! Your article ["The Daily Lickspittle," Matt Smith, June 1] really hits the toad on the head. The S.F. Chronicle is so obviously slanted in their "news" reporting, I stopped reading them years ago. I've lived all over California, and have subscribed to the Los Angeles Times, San Jose Mercury [News], Stockton Record, Sacramento Bee, and the Chron. It's easy to spot the difference between balanced reporting and what the Chron tries to pass off as "news."

The sign of a truly great paper is when you've read an article [that] gives accounts on both sides of a story, you still have no idea what the editors really feel about the issue, like the Sacramento Bee does (the best big daily in California, IMHO). Editorial slants and opinions should be saved for the op-ed section, not the front page.

P.S. Free newspapers rock! Everyone should be able to read the news, regardless of how many quarters they have in their pockets. Keep up the good work!

Justine tenZeldam

Horse of a Different Recollection

Neophyte means never having to say you're sorry: The Dog Bites writer is suffering from numerous memory errors from his day at Golden Gate Fields ["Valley of All the Pretty Horses," May 25]. He claims to have bet on Lost in the Fog for "all kinds of stupid bets -- exactas, trifectas, a smattering to win, place, and show" and claims to have cashed a $1.50 ticket on that race.

A check of the Daily Racing Form results shows my memory to be correct. Since there were only three horses there was no place, show, or trifecta wagering. The only winning tickets on that race were:

Win -- $2.20
Exacta -- $1.30
Quinella -- $2.20

Also a "track neophyte" would most likely not buy the Racing Form, but a serious player would never bet without it.

Name withheld

War Talk

The left is good, good, good: Aaron Glantz's statement that "the left and the right have shown an equal lack of concern for ordinary Iraqis" ["What the Left Got Wrong About Iraq," May 25] is absurd. Everyone I know [opposed the war] because we believed (correctly) that the war would be a humanitarian disaster for the Iraqi people.

The left's opposition to the war had nothing to do with a belief that Iraq under Saddam Hussein was a peaceful paradise. However bad things were in Iraq before the invasion, though, they are now 58 times worse, according to the figures in Glantz's article.

In addition, many leftists have volunteered their efforts to raise humanitarian aid for the Iraqi people. How many supporters of the U.S. war can make the same claim?

Since 1991, U.S. policies toward Iraq have resulted in the deaths of over 1,000,000 ordinary Iraqis, mostly children. The right has supported these policies. The left has consistently opposed them. So who has shown more concern for ordinary Iraqis -- the left or the right?

Phillip Crawford
Nob Hill

The neocons are bad, bad, bad: This attempt to blame the anti-war movement for Saddam's actions is typical of the neocon right's need to create retroactive justification for its support for an illegal invasion. The "left" was far more vocal about Iraqi human rights, and human rights in general, than the "right" has ever been. As George Galloway put it in his Senate testimony:

"I was an opponent of Saddam Hussein when British and American governments and businessmen were selling him guns and gas. I used to demonstrate outside the Iraqi embassy when British and American officials were going in and doing commerce."

Bush and the neocon hawks have made it quite clear through their selective choices of foreign policy projects that human rights do not affect U.S. priorities in any way whatsoever. That's not even a claim they enthusiastically make themselves.

Ben Walsh
Noe Valley


In "The Kids All Write" [B&A, May 25], Karen Zuercher mistakenly attributed a quote to Nicola Griffith that should have been attributed to Kelley Eskridge.


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