My critique of Bush ... your critique of Clinton to follow?

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As you may have surmised, I am temperamentally ill-equipped to resist your challenges which is one reason I try to never miss reading your column. I do have a few areas of concern regarding President Bush.

His attempt to block stem cell research may well arise from his religious belief in equating this research with abortion rather than on medical grounds. A failure to proceed with this program could very well result in the loss of untold benefits for anyone suffering from chronic or life-threatening illnesses. I also do not agree with his enthusiasm for the privatization of the Social Security program. Too many people are not sufficiently knowledgeable about prudent investing. A good example of this would be the enormous success of hucksters who claim that anyone can reap a fortune in the stock market by following a few simple rules that they are promoting. The statistics on the number of gullible souls who have declared bankruptcy following their advice would prove interesting.

A manned mission to Mars, with which you agree, would cost billions of dollars that could be much better spent on alleviating the unacceptable poverty level facing far too many Americans. This would provide the challenge liberals and conservatives alike seek which you feel we need in using our affluence in a positive manner.

Referring to your quote by Mark Twain (or was it Will Rogers?) that "Respect for the office always, respect for the office-holder when he earns it," I agree with you that it is our job to critique the performance of any administration, but I have seldom witnessed the overwhelming hatred that has been directed against Mr. Bush or against any holder of the office regardless of political affiliation or the release of movies (to use a printable term for this garbage) such as Fahrenheit 911. No one is deserving of that and I would very much hope that whoever is elected to the next presidency in 2008 (Republican or Democrat) does not have this type of activity to contend with.

Will you carry the ball from here, Ken?

P.S. Have you read Ann Coulter's book, How to Talk to a Liberal (If You Really Must)? Talk about labeling?#34;she is an expert on the subject.

Susan Cross
Oak Park

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