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Mike Loflen

They Serve The Public

I’m calling about the letter (March 24) to the Cookie Momster (“Cookie Momster,” “Diary of a Diva,” March 17). Barbarella says the petitioners shouldn’t be able to petition, or something to that effect. I’m just calling to say that the petitioners have First Amendment rights; they should have freedom of speech. It also gives people the opportunity to register to vote, so they’re performing a public service, in essence. It also is a job for petitioners who might otherwise be out of work or homeless or any number of situations. I think she should probably mind her business and let them do their work.

Name Withheld
via voice mail

A Band Of Tinkerers

Re letters to the editor “No Jobs for Barbarians” and “Free Market Distortion,” March 17.

I was out of the country for nearly two weeks, supervising an engineering job in Panama, so I missed the original article that caused those gentlemen to write their letters of condemnation.

Engineering has been described over the years as “the application of the forces of nature to the uses of man,” originally by the Association of Civil Engineers, later amended by others to include metaphysical forces, such as social forces and unforeseen trends.

A good portion of engineers find employment working in groups at companies where they ply their trade in organized layers of management and labor, finding comfort in the regular paycheck, much like a secretary or shipping clerk. So profound has this become over the years that engineers became unionized in many areas in order to protect the “longevity” employees over the “new and advanced.” The Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace is one example.

However, since the beginning of engineering, which was not a degree but the result of a certain type of person tinkering and trying to understand mechanics and topography, engineers have been mostly independent thinkers capable of understanding and applying the forces of nature to invent, design, and build things to better mankind and enrich themselves.

For many years, engineers and explorers from the United States went to other countries to exploit low-cost labor and make money building large projects that those customers did not have the ability or resources to do themselves. In return, the Untied States became enriched with mineral and other wealth that had been extracted.

But one of those metaphysical things occurred — those poor, third world countries likewise had certain types of persons who liked to tinker, and they learned from our engineers that it is a noble profession. As a result, they studied and copied us, even exceeding in some areas.

So why the complaints now? Just to requalify myself, for the past 30 years I have still been visiting foreign countries, still plying my trade as an independent engineer and extracting money for my skill in inventing, designing, and building productive things that are useful to man.

I suggest for those complainers, instead of crying because someone took your desk or salary, that you use your knowledge and experience to invent, design, and build something that will not only help man but enrich yourself without depending on someone telling you what to do. Let every engineer become world-class, in every country.

Steve D. Bloom

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Barbarella Fokos March 30, 2011 @ 2:48 p.m.

"I think she should probably mind her business and let them do their work." I love this... the whole point of my not wanting to be bothered by people with clipboards is because I'm minding my own business and going about my day, and they are interrupting me, uninvited. "Their work" is to intercept me on the way from the store to my car and promote their cause. Even when I agree with the cause, I am annoyed by the person. I will not support such irritations, not even with a signature.


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