Letters to the Editor: Saturday, Nov. 18, 2023

Credit: NYT

Credit: NYT

Tragic irony: On page A4 of Tuesday’s DDN were two articles about the dire impact of climate change, as outlined in the recent National Climate Assessment ― yet another wake-up call to the consequences of our overuse of fossil fuels. On page D1, a NYT article spoke of the rise in the use of “drive-thru” services, primarily at fast-food restaurants. Tons of CO2 are pumped into our atmosphere daily from cars lined up at drive-thru windows, when all but a few of us are physically capable of parking, turning off the engine, and walking a few feet inside to get our order. Why are we not connecting the dots here? Is it that difficult to admit that our actions matter? Fast-food corporations and politicians will not ask us to sacrifice, to stop using our vehicles as extensions of our living rooms. Yet, if we’re paying attention at all, we would do everything possible to reduce our carbon emissions. Refraining from using the drive-thru option seems like the least we could be doing.

- Sam Davis, Kettering

The election results were a wake-up call for Republicans, but they were hardly a universal rebuke of pro-lifers. Many experts maintain off-year, state elections aren’t always the best way to interpret the country’s mood. The National Democratic Party is using their win in Ohio and other state races to run a strict abortion playbook at the national level to win more elections. Democrats now refer to Republicans as the “out of touch” party, as Ray Marcano did in his column last Sunday. His theme is that if you can’t fight them, join them! Such an approach indicates that now Republicans should accept abortion since Issue 1 won the popular vote. Implications of following the mood of the crowd to win elections on such a deep and sensitive issue as abortion is pure folly, places politics above pro-life platform and deep-seated moral convictions. In essence, Mr. Marcano’s request to follow the leading party because they “won” encourages a change of thinking and values to gain power and control, encouraging others to change values, and plays into the hands our enemies abroad who love to see America divided. Since Republicans lost, they should they change to a liberal platform? Should Democrats, when they lose, switch to the thinking of Republicans? We need to think for ourselves. We now have that right, but if Mr. Marciano’s advice is followed, our heritage will be compromised more than it already is. America has too many followers — we need more independent thinkers.

- Dan Meckstroth, New Carlisle

The DDN reported that STRS Director Bill Neville conducts Town Halls. Invitation-only seats are often empty as an RSVP is not required. Mr. Neville chooses which pre-submitted questions to answer. Neville claims STRS is still recovering from the Recession of 2008, despite the 2012-2020 upward trajectory of the stock market. Neville fails to mention losses like the $525 million in Panda Power Funds or that the system lost 9.25% on its 2022 investments. Neville claims that STRS cannot afford frozen COLA payments. In 2023 bonuses and salary increases were given to staff. The average bonus was $95,094. The average salary was $198,063 until September raises increased it to $230,266. The average increase in salary was $32,202 or 17.23%. Neville, accompanied by paid staff, tries to convince people that STRS is doing a great job. STRS earned a return of 7.5% in 2022. If the money had been invested in a low risk S&P 500 index fund a return of 14.9% would have been earned. From 2009 to 2021 according to Auditor Yost STRS underperformed the S&P 500 by $90 billion. STRS Retirees with no COLA have lost 25% of their purchasing power in the last seven years and thousands of dollars.

- Andrea Bauer, Beavercreek Twp.