Postscript 

Letters to the Editor

R.I.P. The Pig

To the Editor:

Thanks to Chris Herrington for the Local Beat article on 107.5 The Pig (March 18th issue). I knew something was up when the playlist started to change this past winter. And when they finally switched formats, it was like a kick in the you-know-where. The Pig was second only to WEVL as the most unique and free-flowing station in Memphis.

As the article stated, no one should be too surprised, considering the screwed-up legacy of Flinn Broadcasting. I don't have to look any further than the late WTCK 1210 AM, which played some of the most incredible deep soul and blues I've ever heard. It went off the air due to the megastorm of last July, and now in its place is another sorry-assed golden-oldies format.

When the end finally came, I had nowhere and no one to turn to, until I saw your article. And by the way, contrary to the mention of the "white-folks-world" of The Pig's format, I am black.

If you can find me a station in Memphis that has the Clash, U2, B.B. King, R.E.M., Ani DiFranco, Bob Marley, the Cure, the Rolling Stones, and Al Green on its regular playlist, please let me know.

David Moore

Memphis

To the Editor:

The now-defunct radio station The Pig filled a distinctive niche on the commercial end of the radio dial. Unfortunately for its fans, The Pig was a business, and as such it was answerable to the bottom line.

I have been the volunteer host of "House Bayou" on WEVL-FM 89.9 for the past five years. WEVL has regularly featured local and regional artists throughout its 28-year history. We have done so without commercial interruption due to the generosity of our listener members. WEVL programmers are knowledgeable and passionate about the type of music they play, genres that include Americana, jazz, gospel, and zydeco. WEVL remains dedicated to featuring diversified programming with a special emphasis on music of the South. Tune in.

Susan Maakestad

Memphis

A Runaway Train?

To the Editor:

I want to compliment the Flyer for your excellent editorial ("A Runaway Train?," March 18th issue) opposing the light-rail line from downtown Memphis to the airport. It makes no sense at all, for the many reasons made clear in the editorial.

I believe the Madison Avenue trolley line to the so-called Medical Center was a big mistake too. As past president of the Memphis Area Chamber of Commerce, I am convinced we need to plan ahead more logically. Let's have more good things like FedEx and Graceland and our wonderfully restored downtown.

James L. Fri

Memphis

To the Editor:

As a Midtown resident, I am thrilled with the new Madison trolley line. I've been riding it to work at UT every day, and I've ridden it downtown twice. As a former San Francisco resident, I'm aware of the ride appeal of trolleys and cable cars.

To get Midtowners to leave their cars at home and take public transportation, the ride has to be pleasant. Smelly, noisy busses just can't compete with cars, while trolleys can. In San Francisco, the trolleys and cable cars are tourist attractions in themselves.

I agree with your editorial ("A Runaway Train?," March 18th issue), however, that the line needs to be extended further east. The $19 million that is left might be able to extend the line to McLean and Overton Park. With a bit more money thrown in from the city, county, and state, we might get to Overton Square.

I agree that express busses would be better for getting to the airport, but a trolley line connecting the various entertainment areas would be a tremendous addition to the city.

Herbert D. Zeman

Memphis

Bush, Bush, Bush

To the Editor:

Last week, President Bush rolled out his reelection campaign ads. They were attack ads. Why must a sitting president campaign by attacking his opponent rather than relying on his record? He has held this job for more than three years.

Worse, if you check the facts, the Bush ads are misleading to the point of lying. John Kerry has never discussed "raising taxes." He wants to let Bush tax-cuts expire on people making more than $200,000 thousand a year and give tax breaks to the middle class -- the hard-working majority that drives our economy.

Without some tax relief, we are unable to be the consumers this country needs to drive our economy and create jobs.

Please listen closely to these ads: John Kerry wants to weaken security? Bush is creating new jobs? The Medicare Reform Bill is good for seniors? Please.

Mack Greenslade

Memphis

To the Editor:

I know that Iraq is better off without Saddam Hussein, but removing him from power was never the reason for a ''preemptive'' war.

The American people and the world were told of imminent danger, an active nuclear weapons program, and stockpiles of chemical and nerve agents. To date, we've found exactly nothing, and I don't think it's from a lack of looking.

There sure were intelligence breakdowns, and who's ultimately to blame? Look no further than George W. Bush, who has yet to account for his miscalculations and rush to war.

Dr. Gerard J. Billmeier Jr.

Memphis

To the Editor:

On the anniversary of the beginning of the Iraq war, we should all remember the more than 500 families of American soldiers who have lost a loved one.

We also should not forget that the Bush administration rushed us into this conflict without an exit strategy or the help of the international community. We should not forget that the Bush administration told the world that Saddam had stockpiles of chemical weapons, nerve agents, mobile WMD labs, and the delivery systems to strike our allies. We should not forget that this administration told us there was an imminent threat to American lives. We should not forget that al-Qaeda, not Saddam, was behind the 9/11 attacks.

As Americans, we need to hold President Bush accountable for misinformation and find out with certainty if this administration deliberately misled us.

Laura A. Perry

Memphis

To the Editor:

The Pentagon's 2005 budget doesn't contain any money for military operations in Iraq or Afghanistan. The White House won't ask Congress for that money until January 2005 -- after the November presidential election.

The Bush administration needs to face accountability for its actions. Even Bush's own top weapons inspector, David Kay, called on the administration to admit that there are no weapons of mass destruction: "I think in this case the evidence is out there to the extent that the president really needs to say to the American people, 'We made a mistake.'" [NBC News 3/15/04]

Congress has a responsibility to hold the president accountable for his actions and should censure him for misleading the American people.

Corey Mesler

Memphis

To the Editor:

It's well known that President Bush doesn't believe that global warming is much of a threat or even a real phenomenon, ignoring the consensus of atmospheric scientists the world over. On the other hand, Bush has advocated spending billions on an antiballistic missile system, again ignoring the advice of scientists who question its efficacy.

So what do these issues have in common? Andrew Marshall. Mr. Marshall is the defense department planner at the Pentagon who was the prime mover of the ballistic missile defense system. He has headed a think tank to evaluate risks to national security since 1973 and was personally picked by Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld to lead a review on smart weapons.

Late last year, an unclassified report was released by the Pentagon on the national security implications of drastic climate change. The report was commissioned by Marshall and authored by CIA consultant and former head of planning at Royal Dutch Shell, Peter Schwartz and Doug Randall of the Global Business Network. In brief, the report states that increases in greenhouse gases, instead of gradually warming us, will melt Arctic ice, changing ocean currents and indirectly cause an abrupt cooling of the Northern Hemisphere. This will result in droughts and all sorts of extreme weather, which in turn will create such severe social disruption that it becomes a national security concern.

If Marshall is so trusted by the Bush administration, then Bush has an obligation to explain why he has done nothing about global warming. If Marshall is not to be taken seriously, then why did the administration put so much stock in his opinion on ballistic missile defense?

Bush can't have it both ways. The American people deserve an explanation.

Bill Runyan

Memphis

To the Editor:

John Kerry is challenged by Vice President Cheney to disclose the names of foreign leaders who hope the Democratic candidate will defeat Bush in November.

The irony is amazing. Congress has been trying to cut through the Cheney armor of deception and secrecy regarding who attended the Veep's energy policy meetings. Cheney won't tell the courts, Congress, or investigating committees. Cheney is playing a far more serious game of hide-and-seek than Kerry.

Never underestimate the power of the Bush administration to deflect attention away from the real issues.

Ron Lowe

Nevada City, California

The Memphis Flyer encourages reader response. Send mail to: Letters to the Editor, POB 1738, Memphis, TN 38101. Or call Back Talk at 575-9405. Or send us e-mail at letters@memphisflyer.com. All responses must include name, address, and daytime phone number. Letters should be no longer than 250 words.

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