No Pulitzer

Hayley Rafner spends 11 pages complaining that she can’t get into Gaslamp clubs and claims that she “Google[s] things to do in San Diego when you’re underage” (“Miss In-Between,” Cover Story, June 23).  A ten-second Google search told me that several clubs downtown (e.g., On Broadway, Belo) have frequent 18-plus nights.  Journalism at its finest.

Alex Cohen
via email

No Joke

I just read the article entitled “Slut Walk Devolves into Rape Run” (“SD on the QT,” June 23) on the “Almost Factual News” blog, and I would like to express my sincerest disappointment and frustration over this content decision. As someone who has worked with survivors of sexual assault and was an attendee at Slut Walk San Diego, I can say without question that this is an incredibly offensive posting that treats rape flippantly, has the potential to trigger a lot of survivors, and mocks a movement that is attempting to counter victim-blaming cultural narratives.

Rape is not funny. Mocking antirape activism is not funny. This article is not funny and is in extremely poor taste. I hope you will remove it from your website and consider the impacts of posting and printing something like this in the future.

Kristine Vandenberg
via website feedback

On The Trail

Re “Designer Genes” (“Under the Radar,” June 23). Great! Thanks for following this! Neighbors are trying to get info and cannot. I thought a public institution was required by law to disclose such details. We are strange indeed. Hope to see you continuing to follow this issue.

Name Withheld
via email

Prop Them All Up

Elizabeth Salaam did a great job on the article “Dad Was a Bum” (Cover Story, June 16). Powerful, poignant, memorable. I couldn’t get it off my mind. Props to Mike’s mom for turning out a guy like him and the other kids, and props to Mike for sharing such a heartbreaking story. The photo of Mike on the cover is a masterpiece. What a strong, handsome man with those penetrating eyes. Wow. A total fine package — story and pictures.

Anne Schraff
Spring Valley

It’s Not Bad, It’s Horrible

On page 44, Don Bauder says, “…although recent local joblessness has slipped a bit below double digits” (“Not Much to Brag About,” “City Lights,” June 16). This is true only if you look at the U-3 unemployment figure, which is limited to those who have been unemployed 30 days or less and who have not exhausted unemployment benefits. The actual joblessness figure here in San Diego is now approaching 20 percent (and this is during a recovery!).

In “Hard Numbers: The Economy Is Worse Than You Know” (published in Harper’s Magazine on April 27, 2008), Kevin Phillips presents a primer on government deceit when it comes to official economic statistics (especially unemployment numbers). You might also want to read his 2008 book, Bad Money: Reckless Finance, Failed Politics, and the Global Crisis of American Capitalism, which covers this kind of thing in chilling detail.

Name Withheld
via fax

All Headed The Wrong Way

Don Bauder painted a pretty grim picture of our economy in his June 16 article (“Not Much to Brag About,” “City Lights”). My greatest concern about the economy is jobs. I know people who have been out of work for over a year, and they are becoming desperate. While the Republican answer is to reduce taxes, I don’t think they are going about it in the right way. For that matter, neither are the Democrats.

Reducing taxes will not necessarily help our economy. When taxes are reduced, most of the resulting savings seems to be spent on labor outside the U.S. Money is sent to foreign countries, and profits are pocketed by businesses that do not necessarily hire Americans. While Apple may employ 50,000 people in the U.S., Foxconn employs over a million people in China.

In my opinion, it would be more effective to provide tax breaks to businesses based upon the percentage of Americans they employ. Most of the money paid to American residents will be spent in the U.S. and recirculated in our economy. On the other hand, when the wages are sent out of the country, very little comes back. We lose the buying power of the wages, and we eventually lose the expertise to produce the products.

If nothing else, take note of the events occurring in the Middle East (Egypt, Tunisia, Libya, and Syria). This unrest is about jobs. It’s critical to stimulate employment. If a business receives a $1,000,000 tax break, hires one person for $100,000/year, and sends $900,000 to factory workers outside the country, it doesn’t do us any good in the long run. We need jobs, and we need to retain and develop our job skills in the United States.

Ronald Harris
via email

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