ELECTION 2008

Candidates we support make us hypocrites

What message are we sending to the young people who are following this election? We tell our kids to be honest, kind and caring so they'll grow to be good people.

Then we have an election in which candidates lie, cheat and insult others -- doing everything that we tell our young people not to do. And we accept it as the norm.

This goes beyond a mixed message to our young people. It's hypocritical. Do as we say, not as we do!

What do kids learn more from: What we say or what we do?

JOHN STIGMAN,

OSAKIS, MINN.

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Who Is Barack Hussein Obama?

He is a patriotic American. He is a U.S. senator who stands head and shoulders above his Republican rivals. He is a loving and devoted husband and father.

Obama has presented himself intellectually and eloquently before the electorate. He has presented ideas for America's future, and has defended them before millions of people throughout America and the world.

Now it is being suggested by the McCain/Palin campaign that there is something about him that is perhaps treasonable and un-American.

How low can the Republicans stoop? These tactics, at this time, are being used to distract the American voters of the economic crisis America is facing.

To even ask who Barack Hussein Obama is is to have watched him with blind eyes and heard him with deaf ears.

MARTY LEDERMAN AND Betty Smithberg, Minnetonka

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It is a sin to discriminate against one another. So, to those who think John McCain is too old to be president: Shame on you. Ageism is discrimination. Fight it. Overcome it.

Vote for John McCain and Sarah Palin on Nov. 4. McCain is wise, tested and experienced and will not need a period of on-the-job training when he enters the White House on Jan. 20, 2009.

GREGG SCHWEIGER, DULUTH

THE OLD SCOUT

A brilliant respite from relentless 'occupancy'

Garrison Keillor has my attention once again. Every Sunday I expectantly page to Opinion Exchange to see what the "Old Scout" has to say, and, as of late, find myself quickly growing ever weary of hearing about the "Present Occupant."

But last Sunday, Keillor wrote a brilliant story about a California tragedy and put a beautifully human spin on it ("A beautiful day a fateful juxaposition").

Good job, Mr. Keillor. I'm a fan once again.

WENDY WIENS, EXCELSIOR

U.S. ATTORNEY SCANDAL

It sure puts the lie to 'Bush bashing' charges

Hats off to the Star Tribune for its Oct. 5 editorial, "DOJ names -- and needs -- prosecutor," for not letting us forget the Bush administration's scandalous purge of U.S. attorneys.

It is a crime of Watergate magnitude when the nation's chief law enforcement officials intentionally break the law for partisan political purposes; it is indefensible contempt for the American system of government when those officials refuse to speak to the citizenry about their role in the scandal.

And it is yet another piece of evidence that so-called "Bush-bashing" is nothing more than telling tawdry truths about the wide-ranging damage this administration has done to this country and the ideals on which it was based.

STEVEN SCHILD, WINONA, MINN.

OLGA FRANCO'S SENTENCE

Unaddressed is violation of immigration laws

Regarding the prison sentence handed down to the illegal immigrant who ran a red light, crashing into a school bus and killing four children (Star Tribune, Oct. 9), there are some unsettled issues.

The community and parents invited, knew of and protected the illegal immigrants in what amounts to a regionwide illegal immigrant sanctuary.

After losing their children, one might have thought the grieving parents would have joined a group fighting illegal immigration. But, no. Even the judge made no statement that immigration laws be enforced.

DELL ERIKSON, MINNEAPOLIS

AIG EXECUTIVES AT PLAY

An affront to Congress, Paulson and taxpayers

The report that AIG executives celebrated the $85 billion bailout loan with a $440,000 junket to a posh California spa is despicable.

In effect these AIG executives are flipping the "bird" to Congress, Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and the U.S. taxpayers.

Before a single dollar is turned over to AIG, this group of executives should be fired with no severance pay or golden parachutes. Their lack of judgment is an indication of why AIG is in this predicament.

ROGER HARMON, EDINA

GRAMERCY CLUB

Co-op model works well in Minnesota

The story in the Oct. 5 Star Tribune painted a dreary situation for the Gramercy Club of Edina co-op apartment complex in Edina.

What the story could not convey was that this mess has nothing to do with 10 other healthy Gramercy co-op apartment buildings in Minnesota, plus many more co-ops with other labels. We are each independent, but carry the identification provided by the original developers.

My wife and I live in the Gramercy Park Northwest co-op in Plymouth, open for six years. We operate with one master mortgage on the whole thing. We are self-governed, have never had a vacancy, have always had a waiting list and our accounts and reserves are all up to date and satisfied.

I am sure that the lawyers for these Edina residents will sort out their predicament shortly. The Department of Housing and Urban Development has rules that should protect them.

Co-op apartments are unique to the upper Midwest. There are thousands of condominium deals nationwide but few are co-ops. It works for us, and we do not want to get tarred with the above brush.

REUBEN AND BETTY DUNDER,

PLYMOUTH