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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - October 4, 2003, New Braunfels, Texas Page 4A — Herald-Zeitung — Saturday, October 4, 2003 Our Opinion Drive safely when near school buses If a bus is stopped to pick j up or to drop off children, don't try to pass. The possi- i bilify of striking I I ’ t cannot be stressed enough how important it is to drive safely around school buses. It’s simple really. If a bus is stopped to pick up or to drop off children, don’t try to pass it. The New Braunfels Indent child trying to    I    pendent School District cross the road    *    reports about five to seven should be a    I    incidences per day of ,    i    motorists passing stopped deterrent.    ;    buses A scaled-down police department has limited how many officers can patrol school zones and bus routes. However, bus drivers will record the car’s color, make, license plate number and driver description. Motorists caught passing a school bus could be fined between $200 and $1,000 and could lose their driver’s license on a second offense. But the possibility of striking a child trying to cross the road should be more of a deterrent than any amount of fines. When driving behind a school bus, remember that yellow flashing lights mean the bus is about to stop to pick ap or drop off children. Red flashing lights mean the bus is picking up or dropping off children. Stop at least 50 feet away from the bus, and proceed only after the flashing lights are off. Keep roadways safe for our children and obey the law. Today in History By Hie Associated Press Today is Saturday, Oct. 4, the 277th day bf 2003. There are 88 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Oct. 4,1957, the Space Age began as the Soviet Union launched “Sputnik,” the first manmade satellite, into orbit. On this date: In 1777, George Washington’s troops launched aa assault on the British at Germantown, Pa., resulting in heavy American casualties. In 1822, the 19th president of the United States, Rutherford B. Hayes, was born in Delaware, Ohio. In 1895, the first U.S. Open golf tournament was held, at the Newport Country Club in Rhode Island. In 1931, the comic strip “Dick Tracy,” created by Chester Gould, made its debut. In 1940, Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini conferred at Brenner Pass in the Alps, where the Nazi leader sought Italy’s help in fighting the British. In 1957, the television series “Leave It to Beaver” premiered on CBS. In 1958, the first trans-Atlantic passenger jetliner service was begun by British Overseas Airways Corp. with flights between London and New York. In 1970, rock singer Jams Joplin, 27, was found dead in her Hollywood hotel room. In 1976, agriculture secretary Earl Butz resigned in the wake of a controversy over a joke he’d made about blacks. In 1978, funeral services were held at the Vatican for Pope John Paul I. Ten years ago: Dozens of cheering, dancing Somalis dragged the body of an American soldier through the streets of Mogadishu. In Moscow, the occupation of the Russian parliament building ended as tanks and paratroopers flushed out hard-line opponents of Boris Yeltsin. Five years ago: Russian envoys warned Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic that NATO might launch airstrikes unless he took “decisive measures” to end the humanitarian crisis in the southern province of Kosovo. Herald-Zeitung Serving Mew Braunfels and (Atrial ('(runty since 1852. New Braunfels Zeitung was founded 1852; New Braunfels Herald was 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 Tonay Circulation Director Craig Pauling Advertising Director Courtnay Abarnathy Business Manager Heather Grant .YOU MSB SLUnBt6l\S) ' iKSoifiieapg) ma^tauciibn to iraq,Miim t Bai Irani/ 7 k With iraq .Menr faqirs iou ftrwr riping tony rn cpl Md®, in. aquila1 (MMdeni Middle itqi^pu firiMM v iraqi N" GUESTCOLUMN If mob rule is what GOP is for, I’m no longer for the GOP An open letter for Congressman Lamar Smith: I’m sure that you are reticent to make any disparaging comments regarding your colleagues or your party; however, I must. According to an editorial in the Aug. 31 “New I lampshire Union Leader,” the Republican National Committee chairman, Ed Gillespie, said: “The Days of Reaganesque Republican railings against the expansion of the federal government are over." The article continued with the following: “No longer does the Republican Party stand for shrinking the federal government No today the Republican Party stands for giving the American people whatever the latest polls say they want." In Gillespie’s own words, the GOP defines "fiscal responsibility” as increasing the federal budget at a “slower rate of growth” than the Democrats. Are we to assume that now we will be governed by whimsical public opinion as expressed by the latest “poll du jour?” If so, then it would follow that the COP no longer wishes to be constrained by the Constitution and the rule of law. It seems like the COP has forsaken the Republic in favor of mob rule, which is true democracy. No where in the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, or The Bill of Rights is the word “democracy" mentioned. The founders of our government understood die dangers inherent with democracy and abhorred the concept. The democratic process is stricUy limited to the selection of our governmental representatives, and is not the purview of special privileges for any group, or for defining our rights. I believe that the founders understood that government is a necessary evil, and that left unchecked by a system of checks and balances would grow in power at the expense of personal liberty to become tyrannical. That’s why the democratic process is limited to choosing every two, four or sot years who will be allowed to plunder the citizenry. If the elected representatives plundered too much by way of taxes or fees, then in theory they would be voted out by the next election. If mob rule via polls is what the GOP is now for, then I am no longer for the GOR Under a republic, elected representatives are bound by their oaths of office to operate our government as a republic and constrained by strictly limited power as defined by the Constitution. This system is designed to preserve and enhance individual liberty, private property ownership and protect the rights of the min°rityThescare princi-pies m which I believe. It is unfortunate that most of our elected leaders today commonly refer to our governmental processes as democracy. It is equally unfortunate that a most folks do not know the difference between a democracy and a republic. As I said earlier, a republic is a form of limited government constrained by the rule of law, based on the Constitution and is designed to protect individual liberty, private property ownership, and the rights of the minority. Democracy is two wolves and one sheep deciding what is for dinner. It is just that simple. LITTI IIS POLICY ■ Letters must be 250 words or fewer. ■ The Herald-Zeitung reserves the right 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 be confirmed. SLEDDSNIJIRKR C. V. Sledd Shearer of I _ New Braunfels is a tractor and individual investor, a graduate of U. C. -Davis, class of 1970 and a life member of the NBA. MMI totters to: Letters to Editor clo Herald-Zeitung P.O. Drawer 311328 New Braunfels, TX 78131-1328 Fax them to: (830) 606-3413 e-mail them to: news@herald- 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 Courtyard 5 Washington. DC. 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, D.C. 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 r|& animi Texas Government GOVERNOR ■ Rick Perry State Capitol, Ftoom 2S.1 P.O. Box 12428 Austin 78711 Telephone: (800) 843-5789 Fax: (512) 463-1849 STATE HOUSE ■ Carter CAeTEEL 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-mail address: [email protected] 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 address: [email protected] ■ Judith Zaffirini P O Box 627 Laredo 78042-0627 SAN ANTONIO OFFICE: 12702 Toepperwein Road *214 San Antonio 78233 Telephone: (210) 657-0095 Fax: (210) 657-0262Iraq has become a ‘revolting development’ for US CHARLEYRBISI Charley Reese is a columnist for King Features Synicate. You can write to him at PO. Box 2446, Orlando, Fla. 32802. Bill Bendix played the lead in an old radio and early television comedy, “The Life of Riley.” Riley was a blustery but luckless blue-collar guy, and whenever any of his schemes backfired, which they always did, he would stare at the camera and say, “What a revolting development this is.” That line is perfect for Iraq. The United States, with bombs and sanctions, destroyed the Iraqi infrastructure — and now we are responsible for fixing it. Indeed, what a revolting development this is. Billions and billions of dollars will be required to undo all the damage that Gulf Wars I and II, economic sanctions (which prevented repairs) and U.S.-allowed looting have done to the electrical and water plants, sewer systems, communications systems and industrial plants. Not only will it require billions and billions of American tax dollars, but it will also take years to complete. The problem is that the Iraqi people, so impres sed by our “shock and awe” high-tech weapons, have expected us to get it done in months, if not weeks. Patience is not their strong point. It is bad enough that American intelligence was so far off the mark on weapons of mass destruction, but for gosh sakes, you’d think that with all of their satellites, overflights and other high-tech gadgets the intelligence agencies could have gotten a better idea of the poor state of Iraq’s infrastructure. Not so, and if that doesn’t alarm you, it should. Now that we know all that our intelligence agencies didn’t know about Iraq, it certainly makes you wonder about all the things they don’t know about Russia, China, North Korea, Iran and the rest of the world. It seems to me we are stuck with one of two situations: Either President Bush lied while the troops died, or we have one of the worst intelligence communities on the planet. It could, of course, be both. If we are going to take a positive approach and use this debacle as a learning experience, then one of the first things that should happen is that heads should roll in the spook community. Unfortunately, one of the things the Bush administration does least well is hold people accountable. It seems that if you are loyal to the president, you can foul up to beat the band and still keep your job. Since 9-11, not one person has been fired for incompetence or negligence. Apparently, nobody in our government made any mistakes or oversights at all, and the terrorists were just geniuses who were unstoppable. Personally, I don’t think anybody who flies himself into a building is a genius. The terrorists made mistakes. Our government just made bigger ones. The terrorists paid with their lives for their mistakes. We taxpayers, however, are still paying the salaries and benefits of the bureaucrats who made the mistakes on our side, and for all we know, they are making more mistakes. The FBI and the CIA, in my view, need to be dismantled and rebuilt from the ground up. I have no confidence in either organi zation. I don’t buy this heifer dust they both put out that “we can’t talk about our successes.” No, you can’t, especially when they are nonexistent. In my hometown, the FBI and the U.S. Attorney’s Office announced the arrest of an American citizen of Palestinian origin. The arrest, they said, followed “three and a half years" of investigation. Well, do you know what the three-and-a-half-year investigation turned up? Among 2,000 employees in souvenir shops and fast-food restaurants this man owns, there were 50 illegal aliens. Neither he nor any of the 50 have been charged with having any connection whatsoever with terrorism. I’m sorry, but if it takes three and a half years to find 50 illegals in a country where there are 11 million, I don’t feel any safer at all. I could find more than that in a week. We should face the fact that our federal government isn’t working very well at the moment. Like Iraq’s infrastructure, it needs fixing, and for those of you who prefer big central government, that's probably a revolting development. United States Government PRESIDENT ■ George W. Bush 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., NW Washington, D.C. 20500 ;