The lobbying money spent by the chamber in 2000 was $18.7 million, according to the report. What a jump in 10 years.
The chamber is complaining about greater calls by the Democrats for government involvement in health care, tighter federal regulation of the financial industry and legislation to help unions organize workers.
The chamber has won the Supreme Court decision that corporations have a free-speech right to spend money to help elect or defeat candidates. It struck down a century of laws limiting such spending.
The fiasco we are in now is due to not enough regulation of the big corporations. Laissez faire policy is part of the Republican Party's manifesto. It set up the present economic conditions, which the current administration is trying to overcome.
The freedom of real estate, banking business, the health-care industry and others is causing the current problem and has dumped them into President Obama's lap.
It will take a mighty effort to pull out of this fiasco.
Thank you, President Bush, and the previous Republican Congresses and their economic policies.
Social niceties are disappearing
Maybe I am just from the old-school, but it seems to me that the very basics of human interaction have deteriorated to such a degree that the very fabric of our civilized society is dangerously at risk.
What I am talking about are simple manners and courtesy on a daily basis. I cannot tell you how many times I have held a door open for somebody and they just walk right by me without even an utter or a smile. Usually they are busy texting or talking on a cell phone. Have people become so desensitized that they actually interact better with their high-tech toys than with their fellow human beings?
Manners and politeness are the glue of a civilized society, and people who are guilty of this lapse of the very basics of human interaction should take a long, careful look at their behaviors.
Ramani trying ethnic pandering
Your recent series of articles on the 43rd Assembly District candidates' outreach to Armenians ("Forum likely to proceed June vote," May 15) were very instructive.
It appears that Sunder Ramani is picking up where Nayiri Nahabedian left off.
Trying to "out-Armenian" the other candidates and stirring up bad feelings in the Armenian community to try to manipulate them into voting for him. This did not work for Nahabedian, and I doubt it will work for Ramani.
Is it possible that Mike Gatto was the top vote-getter in the special primary because he refused to engage in this ethnic pandering?
This voter certainly thinks so.