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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - August 8, 2003, New Braunfels, Texas Page 6A — HERALD-ZEITUNG — Friday, August 8, 2003Forum Contact Managing Editor Gary E. Maitland 625-9144, ext. 220 Nkw Braunfels Herald-Zeitung New Braunfels Zeitung was founded 1852; New Braunfels Herald was founded 1890. "[Tie two papers merged in 1957 and printed in both German and English until 1958. Doug Toney, Editor and Publisher Gary E. Maitland, Managing Editor (830) 625-9144Other Views Houston Chronicle on corporate reform: In his Devil’s Dictionary, begun in the 18808, Ambrose Bierce defined a corporation as “an ingenious device for obtaining individual profit without individual responsibility.” One year after passage of corporate reform legislation known as Sarbanes-Oxley, the definition is only slightly dated. The Associated Press reports, according to Bush administration figures, the government has won 250 corporate fraud convictions, charged 354 people with corporate crimes and won more than $85 million in fines and restitution. Last week, the Citigroup and J.P. Morgan Chase banking institutions agreed to pay fines and disgorge profits of $308 million for their role in helping Enron misrepresent its finances. Earlier, major security firms agreed to pay $1.4 billion to settle charges that analysts had made false recommendations to investors in order to curry favor with corporate investment banking clients. The picture is mixed, however. Two central figures in the Enron scandal, Ken Lay and Jeff' Skilling, have never been charged. The trials of those who have been indicted and haven’t pleaded guilty are months or years off. The Securities and Exchange Commission, under a new chairman, William H. Donaldson, now requires corporations’ chief executive and financial officers to certify the company’s financial statements. Never again can corporate chieftains claim they know nothing about grotesque accounting errors, fantasy profits and concealed debts. The SEC requires corporations to expense stock options and get investor approval for executive compensation packages. Donaldson, however, noted many company executives and boards have not gotten the message that huge salaries, bonuses and perks are not in the best interests of investors now eager for low-taxed dividends. Last month the Chronicle reported in its business section five Houston CEOs were paid more than $9.5 million in 2002, even though the value of three companies had declined appreciably. Two CEOs received more than $22 million. Proponents of huge salaries for executives say companies need to pay a lot in order to secure the executives’ best efforts. If a CEO is unwilling to give his best for a couple of million a year plus perks, the company may have the wrong person for the job. True, some CEOs add great value to their companies. That is their job, and the extra value belongs to investors. CEOs shouldn’t automatically get tens of millions of dollars extra for doing their job. After all, few CEOs get pay cuts when stock value declines. The wave of corporate accounting scandals set off by Enron’s meltdown has warned investors to be careful where they put their money. Despite new regulations, corporate misdeeds will continue until individual profits for corporate executives and board members are accompanied by individual responsibilities. MiM/Policy The Herald-Zeitung encourages the submission of letters. Letters must be 250 words or fewer, and the Herald-Zeitung reserves the right to edit all submissions. Guest columns should be less than 500 words. An address and telephone number, which are not for publication, must be included so authorship can be confirmed. No letter will be published until it has been verified. Mail letters to: Letters to the Editor c/othe Herald-Zeitung P.O. Drawer 311328 New Braunfels, TX 78131-1328 Fax: (830) 606-3413 e-mail: [email protected] Price of parking at CISD unfair Contact ’Em Where does it stop? Comal Independent School District has once again raised fees for parking permits for the students who drive to school. Last year, the increase was 150 percent. An additional $15 was added, making parking that once cost $10 go up to $25. This year, it has gone from $25 to $35. This is a 40 percent increase*, in one year’s time. For the sake of comparison, parking at New Braunfels High School was $10 last year. Samuel Clemens was, and will be, $3 this year, and Navarro is $5. Parking at CISD high schools is big business. It seems our principals are the men at the top making these* price-gouging decisions with no limits. Brad Wright of Smithson Valley High Scheiol bases his justification for this ridiculous price increase on the fact that Highland Park charges $250 for parking passes. Well, for those who don’tToday In History By The Associated Press Today is Friday, Aug. 8, the 220th day of 2003. . There are 145 days left iii the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Aug. 8, 1974, President Nixon announced he would resign following new damaging revelations in the Watergate scandal. On this date: In 1815, Napoleon Bonaparte set sail for St. Helena to spend the remainder of his days in exile. In 1876, Thomas A. Edison received a patent Brenda Klar Guest Column know, Highland Park is in the Dallas area and one of the richest areas across the United States. We hardly compare to them. Bob Wiegand of Canyon High School, based on last year’s comments, feels the prices are fair and stated the money went to things like funding school activities like ROTC, pizza parties, etc. I have been informed this year the money will go to the administration office for God only knows what. There is nothing about CISD parking lots that makes them appear any better than any other school’s, and our kids are not guaranteed a spot to park, either. Our district is not capable of busing all of these kids to and from school, so why are we allowing them to punish the kids who already save our dis trict money by not using the bus system? People, if you don’t start complaining, it will only get worse! I strongly urge you to voice your opinion to your principal, the school board and (Superintendent James) Grunert. These people count on us to forget when they pull stunts like this, and will be the same ones asking you to vote for a bond in the future. I personally will not forget their unfair price gouging and will likely never vote yes to another bond, nor will I encourage anyone else to do so. My last child attends Canyon High School. This will be the last parking permit I will purchase, but you can bet, when asked to support school programs, I will be reluctant to do so, knowing there Is money in the general fund generated from the “parking lot price gouging” to cover such expenses. (Brenda Klar is a Comal ISO taxpayer.) for his mimeograph. In 1942, six convicted Nazi saboteurs who’d landed in the United States were executed in Washington, D.C.; two others received life imprisonment. In 1945, President Truman signed the United Nations Charter. In 1945, the Soviet Union declared war against Japan during World War ll In 1953, the United States and South Korea initialed a mutual security pact. In 1963, Britain’s “Great Train Robbery” took place as thieves made off with 2.6 million pounds in banknotes. In 1968, Richard M. Nixon was nominated for president at the Republican national convention in Miami Beach, Fla. In 1973, Vice President Spiro T. Agnew branded as “damned lies” reports he had taken kickbacks from government contracts in Maryland, and vowed not to resign _ which he eventually did. In 1978, the United States launched Pioneer Venus Two, which carried scientific probes to study the atmosphere of Venus. City Council Mayor Adam Cork 608-2100, city hall 609-1958, home mayor® District 1 Sonia Muftoz-Gill 608-2100 District 2 Larry Alexander 609-1242, home District 3 Gale Pospisil 625-6997, work District 4 Valerie Hull* (210) 533-1250, work District 5 Lee Rodriguez 629-4901, work District 6 Ken Valentine 625-7384, home [email protected] Comal County Judge Danny School 620-5501 Fax: 608-2026 Precinct 1 Commissioner Jack Dawson 620-5504 (830) 899-2948, home Precinct 2 Commissioner Jay Minikin 620-5509 (210) 651-9672, home Precinct 3 Commissioner Cristina Zamora 620-5503 606-9208, home Precinct 4 Commissioner Jan Kennady 620-5508 (830) 625-6739, homeEpiscopalians should ask, ‘Is a gay leader God’s will?’ An Episcopalian friend of mine, reacting to the elevation of an openly homosexual priest to the office of bishop, said to me, “If you’re a heterosexual clergyman and you’re having sex outside marriage, you can be expelled. But if you’re a homosexual clergyman having sex outside marriage, they rejoice.” Most denominations that call themselves Christian take the Bible as their text for spiritual and relational instruction. Some in the Episcopal Church take a liberal view of the Bible, just as some do of the U.S. Constitution — it must be constantly updated to suit cultural trends. This view lends itself to constant misinterpretation and confusion. Eventually, it leads to religious or political heresy. Ancient Scripture sets out parameters for all human sexual expression. To get around restrictions limiting sexual activity Cal Thomas between a man and a woman within a marital bond, liberal theologians had to construct a theology saying the Bible does not really mean what it clearly says. It is the same with the Constitution, which is interpreted by liberals to allow for the use of God’s name in vain as an act of protected speech, but prohibits the favorable use of His name under the same First Amendment. lf Scripture is to be circumvented in the matter of homosexuality and not disqualify one who seeks the office of bishop, what about divorce? The newly approved bishop, V. Gene Robinson, who had been described by I’he New York Times in deliciously politically correct language as “the gay bishop-elect,” left his wife and two children to take up with a man. In what is regarded by most Christians as the job description for high church office, Paul the Apostle wrote to his young protege Timothy an “overseer” (or minister) must be "above reproach, the husband of one wife," and “must manage his own family well and see that his children obey him with proper respect." Paul then asks an important question: “If anyone does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of God’s church?” (I Timothy 3:2-5) Members of the Episcopal Church, who give their money and their presence in the pews, are being asked to accept a bish op who is not qualified for the office (nor even for the priestly one he holds). Do the Episcopal leadership and the leadership of the parent Anglican Church want to send the message the Bible says only what some people want it to say? Some of Robinson’s supporters call him a “holy man.” What could that possibly mean, since “all have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory” (Romans 3:23)? Perhaps holiness, like the word “is” during the Clinton administration, depends on what one means at a given moment. People who regard Scripture as having passed from God to man without error have warned for years what happens when these texts are treated as something less than accurate. Once compromises are made — and I’m not talking about stoning adulterers, though such a practice might be one way to implement term limits in Washington — all things become not only possible, but probable. If God is not God and if man says God didn’t say what He has said, then what standard is to be used to judge anything? It is more than a slippery slope. It is slippery theology with potential eternal consequences. Who gets to decide, God or man? If man, then man becomes God and God is diminished, at least in man’s eyes. If a practicing homosexual priest who divorced his wife and walked out on his children is deemed a fit leader for the Episcopal Church, members are going to have to ask themselves a serious question: Does their denomination represent the will of their God and, if not, why don’t they abandon a church that has clearly abandoned Him? (Cal Thomas is a syndicated columnist.) ;