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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - December 16, 2003, New Braunfels, Texas Page 4A — Herald-Zeitung — Tuesday,December 16, 2003 mn Other Viewpoints Playoffs would be better than BCS Hie CChippewa Herald, Chippewa Falls, Wis., on the need for a real college football playoff: Since being created in 1998 out of greed by members of the major collegiate conferences and one television network, the Bowl (Championship Series has been an outright fiasco. That comes as little surprise to most college football fans, who knew its weaknesses long before they became apparent to those who run it. The BC 'S's stated purpose is to match the nation’s No. I and No. 2 football teams in a single winner-take-all bowl game, something it bas failed to do in three of the last four years.... I lores one way to do it, and although it would make many existing bowl games irrelevant, that is already the case.... A 16-team playoff would feature the 11 conference champions and five at-large teams, with the first two rounds held before the holidays. That leaves two semifinal games and a championship game, and they can be played around New Year’s as part of a scaled-back bowl setup, or after the holidays. Such a plan is bound to increase college football's popularity, and at the same time spare us from feigning interest in a bowl game not named after a fruit or a Bower. Today in History By The Associated Press Today is Tuesday, Dec. 16, the 350th day of 2003. There are 15 days left in the year. Today s I lighlight in I listory: On Dec. 16, 1773, the Boston Tea Party took place as American colonists boarded a British ship and dumped more than 300 chests of tea overboard to protest tea taxes. On this date: In 1653, Oliver Cromwell became lord protector of I hi gland, Scotland and Ireland. In 1770, composer Ludwig van Beethoven was born in Bonn, Germany. In 1809, Napoleon Bonaparte was divorced from the Empress Josephine by an act of the Trench Senate. In 1916, Gregory Rasputin, the monk who’d wielded powerful influence over the Russian court, was murdered by a group of noblemen. In 1941, tile World War ll Battle of the Bulge began as (herman forces launched a surprise counter attack against Allied forces in Belgium. In 1950, President Truman proclaimed a national state of emergency in order to fight "(Communist imperialism.” LETTERS POLICY ■ Letters must bo ?50 words or fewer. ■ The Herald-Zeitung reserves the rigtit to edit all submissions. ■ Guest columns should be less than 500 words and must be accompanied by a photo. ■ Address and telephone number must be included so authorship can bp confirmed. Mail letters to: Letters*to Editor c/o Herald Zeitung PO Drawer 311328 New Braunfels, TX 78131 1328 Fax them to: (830) 606 3413 e-mail them to: [email protected] Herald-Zeitung Serving Slew Braunfels unit Comal County since ISS2 New Braunfels Zeitung was founded 1852; New Braunfels Herald'fyas founded 1890 The two papers merged in 1957and printed in both German and English until 1958 Managing Editor Gary E. Maitland News Editor Brady Craal Features Editor Brian Grant Editor and Publisher Doug Toney Circulation Director Craig Pauling Advertising Director Courtnay Abernathy Business Manager Heather Grant Letters to the Editor From mouth of babes: Consider * textile mill as civic center site For what it’s worth, I offer this story about a potential civic center site. Recently, while driving with two teenage sisters who were adopted from a Russian orphanage two years ago by a local couple, we passed by the former Mission Valley Textile Mill, at the end of McKenna and Tau st. Both girls observed that these old buildings reminded them of what it was like in their Russian hometown. If available, please consider this site, not the existing buildings, since they would need to be razed. Therefore, persons other than myself can list the advantages and disadvantages. While continuing our drive to see Christmas lights, one girl pointed out a lovely home with a “for sale” sign out front. She said. “ Thats the house I would like to have!” When asked what she would do with it, she said, "I would invite* my friends at the orphanage to come live in it ." When she was asked to name the children, sin* called at least IO by name. The younger sister, 14, agreed. The 17 year-old blushed and smiled when she called the name ol one boy, also 17,1 believe. The names oft he children are on a board in their Texas home as a reminder of the girls' Russian heritage. Charles Cluuiwell New lim a ii (els Parents: Choose to be involved with your children’s education I was one of the teachers present for the round table at SV1 IS. I volunteered to discuss school violence, drugs, drinking and driving. I read your article to my students and they were generally defensive of their parents. I hat was nice to see, as we all know how much disdain our teenagers usually have for us. As I rarely miss the opportunity to discuss our journey through life, we turned the discussion to apathy in general. I shared this story with them. As a detective in Ins Angeles, I witnessed the death of three high school students. They had attended a rave party and died after sailing off Angeles Crest Highway on the way home. Hie school held a town hall meeting, and thousands showed where few had attended such meetings before. The parents were beside themselves — blaming the school, blaming the cops, and blaming everyone but themselves and their kids for the decisions they make. I spoke for three hours about being involved with their kids. I put the blame right back on the parents and their kids. Our society is quick to shift responsibility and blame others for our lot. They are faced with life-altering decisions everyday, and they need our wisdom whether they know it or not. Our paradigms are different, but we make choices every day. As they are responsible for their decisions, so too, are we as parents. ( boose to be involved, because before you know it, they are indeed grown and gone. Kevin Elliott San Antonio Auto owners should be careful when disposing of antifreeze I would just like to remind everyone to be careful when adding antifreeze totheir autos this year. last year, several cats died as a result of drinking antifreeze. ()ne of the cats was ours, and it was too late by the time we found out what was wrong. It is a very painful and terrible death for the animal, as well as heart-breaking for the pet owner.So please, let s dispose of auto fluids properly and not risk the lives of our pets. Kay Kaldwell New Braunfels nom TU CONTACT •IwWi ■ Mm wwRi filw • United States Government PRESIDENT ■ George W. Bush 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., NW Washington, D C. 20500 SENATE ■ Kay Bailey Hutchison Russell Senate Office Building Room 284 Washington. D.C. 20510 Telephone: (202) 224-5922 Fax: (202) 224-0776 Web: (Send e-mails through Web site.) SAN ANTONIO OFFICE: 8023 Vantage Drive, Suite 460 San Antonio 78230 Telephone: (210) 340-2885 Fax: (210) 349-6753 ■ John Cornyn Russell Senate-Hart Room 517 Washington. D.C. 20510 Telephone: (202) 224-2934 Fax: (202) 228-2856 Web: (Send e-mails through Web site.) AUSTIN OFFICE: 221 West Sixth St.*, Suite 1530 Austin 78701 Telephone: (512) 469-6034 Fax: (512) 469-6020 SAN ANTONIO OFFICE: 600 Navarro, Suite 210 San Antonio 78205 Telephone: (210) 224-7485 Fax: (210) 224-8569 CONGRESSMAN ■ Lamar Smith Rayburn House Office Building Room 2231 Washington. DC. 20515 Telephone: (202) 225-4236 Fax: (202) 225-8628 SAN ANTONIO OFFICE: 1100 NE Loop 410, Suite 640 San Antonio 78209 Telephone: (210) 821-5024 Fax: (210) 821-5947 NOW Td CONTACT Texas Government GOVERNOR ■ Rick Perry Statff Capitol, Room 2S.1 PO. Box 12428 Austin 78711 Telephone: (800) 843-5789 Fax: (512) 463-1849 STATE HOUSE ■ Carter Casteel 254 E. Mill St. New Braunfels 78130 Telephone: (830) 627-0215 Toll Free: (866) 687-4961 Fax: (830) 627-8895 WHILE IN AUSTIN: PO. Box 2910 Austin 78768-2190 Telephone: (512) 463-0325 Fax: (512) 473-9920 E-mall addreee: carter [email protected] state.tx us STATE SENATE ■ Jeff Wentworth 1250 NE Loop-410, Suite 720 San Antonio 78209 Telephone: (210) 826-7800 Fax: (210) 826-0571 WHILE IN AUSTIN: Telephone: (512) 463-0125 Fax: (512 ) 463-7794 E-mail eddrese: jeffwentworth«5senate state ■ Judith Zaffirini P O Box 627 Laredo 78042-0627Haggard-looking Saddam refutes theory running good for you S bled ARGUS HAMILTON Argus Hamilton's daily collinal of jokes on die items is curried iii more than IOO newsfMifiers across the Hailed States and is also reoil and heard by millions on tin Internet Heron he reached him bye mail at Argusjokes< addam I lusseiii was shown on worldwide newscasts looking exhausted and haggard, and pale and enfee-11 is heard was so filthy he had to be examined for lice. So much for the theory that running every day keeps you looking your hest. Saddam was humiliated Sunday with tile worldwide telecast of a longue depressor down his throat. Theres no let-up. I Ie wasn’t in custody IO minutes when the White I louse began building a case against him for starting the fin epidemic. Saddam I lussein was found Saturday hiding out on a farm near I ikrit. I ie had three-quarters of a million dollars in cash, a pistol, a supply of brand new clothes, and two machine guns. Paris I lilton did a better job of blending into a farming community. Amnesty International demanded Sunday that Saddam I lussein receive POW status and regular visits from the Red (Yoss. I le’s ti human being who’s felt human suffering. Over the years, Saddam buried three wives, and two of them were just napping. Saddam was discovered and arrested by U.S. forces. I hey had to dig him out of a hole in the basement of a mud hut. Thank goodness he wasn’t disguised as a weapon of mass destruction or we might never have found him. Hie White I louse announced the capture of Saddam on Sunday and Baghdad reacted with celebratory gunfire. I he vast majority of Iraqis want to live in a peace fill and free world. We will find these people and we will bring them lo justice. President Bush missed church Sunday to avoid seeing reporters afterward. I Ie did not want to appear to lie gloating over the capture of a Muslim while standing in front of a church. You will never see a more gracious sport than a Methodist holding four Aces. Saddam hid in a 6- by eight-foot hole, ventilated with a fan and air shaft, and walled in by bricks. Don’t feel sorry lur him. The same size holes sell in Maiihat tan for $fi million, if you can pass the interview with the co op board The Iraqi Governing (Council announced Sunday Saddam will be tried by a tribunal of iraqi judges inside Iraq. You have to feel for the guy. At this moment, he could just kick himself for nominating so many conservatives to tile bench. Wesley Clark said Sunday that Saddam ought to be tried by the War Crimes h i Initial in Europe. I lowever, capital punishment isn t allowed there. Europeans don’t give mass murderers the death penalty they give them Poland and (Czechoslovakia. Democrats were thrown oil--stride when Saddam was nabbed. Their election strategy is narrowing. Hie economy is rebounding and Saddam is in hand-cuffs, but Democrats believe they can win just on their promise of a tax increase. Israel’s Defense Minister Sliaul Mofaz sent a telegram to Washington Sunday offering congratulations on the victory against the rulers of darkness. There’s no need to rub it in. We’re perfectly well aware that we knocked out the electricity in Baghdad. /Ml Saints Episcopal Church in Beverly I fills held a/congregation-wide meeting Monday to ail out member anger over tile ordination of Gene Robinson as bishop of New I lampshire. I le’s openly gay. Thank goodness my church's founder, I lenry VHI, and his six wives are not here to suffer through this assault on traditional marriage. The Oklahoma Sooners will get to play in the Sugar Bowl for the championship despite a Dec. 6 loss. They staggered and stumbled and fell on their faces in that loss. Its die best possible way to train for a weekend in New ()rleans. Glen I Campbell pleaded not guilty Dec. 9 to drunk driving and hit-and-run in Phoenix. I lis car struck and demolished another vehicle and sped away at high speed before police arrived. Everyone is enjoying the extra kick in that postwar gasoline. Park Place I lotels in Las Vegas banned problem gamblers Dec. 8. All of their casinos display large signs advertising a hotline for you to call if you have a gam bling problem. One guy who called said he had an ace and six and wondered what to do. President Bush was honored by the Yale Club with the unveiling Dec. 8 of his portrait on their wall. Keep your eye on this artist. Any painter who can forge a Frederick Remington this well could fool the Cowboy I fall of Fame in Oklahoma City China was hit by a powerful earthquake Dec. 9 that rocked its southeastern coastal region. Geologists were impressed by its power, lf this quake had moved any more things around, Taiwan would be demanding its independence from (California. President Bush warned Taiwan that same day not to disturb the status quo in China. No one expected anything less out of him. T he three most admired last stands in Republican Party folklore are the Alamo, the little Big Horn, and the Status Quo. China’s Premier Wen iiabao was welcomed Dec. 9 in a South liiwn ceremony. He got a 19-gun salute and a fife and drum corps parade. Hie welcome usually includes a fireworks show but the Pentagon is fresh out of everything that explodes. The Pentagon faced hard questions Monday over the number of troops needed to protect LES. interests in Iraq. That's easy to tabulate. You simply calculate the circumference of the oil fields and divide it by the arm span of the average sentry. ;