Letters from our readers
8 May 2001
To the editor:
Thank you for a very cogent article. [US suffers largest job loss since February 1991] One thing that struck me is your point that even the most skilled and highly paid workers are going to be thrown on the scrap heap. This is also happening in what was once thought to be a relatively safe and lucrative field ... medicine. Doctors are now being forced to react as employees to the growing and overarching strength of corporate medicine. As it stands now, quite a few labor intensive medical procedures have now become far more automated. In fact, HMOs and most managed care have become far less labor-intensive and more dependent on either machines or no care at all to treat their clients. Little service and more automation. It sounds to me like the Wal-Martization of medicine for most Americans.
6 May 2001
If Timothy McVeigh “deserves” to be killed by the United States of America, as Mr. Cheney says, does the United States of America “deserve” to kill Timothy McVeigh?
There are many good practical reasons to be against the death penalty: because it is an expensive, casual, arbitrary, racist, class-related, not working, cruel and brutal violation of human rights; because it kills the innocents, the poor, the mad, the destitute; because capital punishment means that those without the capital get the punishment.
Quite all those good reasons do not fit with McVeigh, who is the racist terrorist who (19 April 1995) killed 168 persons in Oklahoma City. If the earth were flat and the death penalty were just there would be no people who “deserve,” as Mr. Cheney says, to die more than Timothy McVeigh. But the earth is not flat and the death penalty is not just and above all the United States does not “deserve” to kill him because there is no state, any state, which has the right to kill in cold blood. That is one of the many reasons for which Europe is a “death penalty-free land.” The USA is the lone western country which still kills people. It remains with countries like China, Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, etc. It is time the United States comes into the civilized part of the world.
But do not forget there is a good practical reason against the execution of McVeigh: i.e., it is stupid and dangerous to kill a terrorist. The bombing of a federal building in Oklahoma City was a revenge for Waco, and now McVeigh wants to die and become a “martyr.” Be sure that sooner or later someone will try to revenge him.
2 May 2001
This is just a letter to let you know that I think you are one of the best sites on the web, and I hope you will keep up the excellent work.
4 May 2001
Thanks for the series of articles exposing the particularly rotten role played by the corporate media during the US elections. I have recently come across a quote by the great Karl Marx himself which masterfully describes the function of the corporate media:
“By means of an ingenious system of concealed plumbing, all the lavatories of London empty their physical refuse into the Thames. In the same way every day the capital of the world spews out all its social refuse through a system of goose quills, and it pours out into a great central paper cloaca —the Daily Telegraph .... At the entrance which leads to the sewer, the following words are written in sombre colours: ‘ Hic quisquam faxit oletum!', or as Byron translated it so poetically, ‘Wanderer, stop and—piss!'” ( Herr Vogt, 1860)
3 May 2001
I am very thankful for the existence of the WSWS. Its clearheaded presentation of socialist ideals and of Marxist analyses of world events has been enlightening. However, after reading many of your recent articles, I'm wondering why no one has made a point of giving the Bush/Cheney administration what seems to me to be its proper label: fascist.
The following quote from Compton's Encyclopedia seems to summarize the administration's policies quite succinctly : “Fascism ... forges a political alliance with capitalism, working with those who control production, for the better economic functioning of the nation.” Of course, “better economic functioning of the nation” is just a pretense for further consolidation of wealth and power, but it is in fact the almost verbatim claim of the administration when promoting its policies. E.g., the energy policies of promoting (1) drilling for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and (2) nuclear power.
2 May 2001