Advice to Congress

The vote against the bailout for the banking industry has renewed my faith in America and American politicians. Americans (even American bankers) are strong, resourceful and ingenious. This vote against the bailout is really a vote of confidence in the bankers and financial workers of America. Nobody is ever made stronger with a handout.

In the face of this "no" vote, I imagine that some bank out there right now is considering asking its CEOs, upper management and even its board of directors to take a pay cut and kick in some of their own millions to keep the bank alive and lending. In contrast, if the bailout had been authorized, those same CEOs would all be taking big bonuses and giving themselves raises.

I say to our members of Congress: Stay the course and make our economy truly strong. If another request for a handout comes along, consider giving a loan to those entities that have already taken steps to pull themselves up by their own bootstraps. The responsibility to fix the financial crisis belongs to the financial industry not the government (a k a me and you.)

ANDY MAKO, LAKEVILLE

It's the nature of things

Growing up in Montana and living in Minnesota for the past 35 years has given me a real perspective on the bailout.

When our forests are filled with dead trees, greedy insects, and have grown out of control, nature comes along with a big white flash. It seems like a horrible event at the time, but when the young healthy seedlings begin to sprout life takes on a new freshness.

Sometimes you just have to let the forests burn.

STEVE ERBAN, STILLWATER

Terms of the deal

I'm retired and depend upon my stock market investments to support myself. I'd rather lose the whole investment than victimize the taxpayers by having bailout legislation passed to cover the loses that are not their fault.

The only bailout needed is for bankers. They should be forced to bail out and land without a golden parachute to save them.

STEWART CLEARE, MINNEAPOLIS

Tired of the Franken-Coleman contest

Political television advertising has destroyed credibility among all candidates. When two stories appeared in Sunday's Opinion Exchange section -- one featuring Norm and one featuring Al -- I refused to read either one because I don't trust them any longer. Thanks to their slam-bang ads, they are fools full of sound and fury signifying very little.

DICK HAINES, HOPKINS

Sarah Palin, as seen by the media and the McCain campaign

I disagree strongly with the Sept. 30 letter writer who supports Gov. Sarah Palin simply because she is a "working mom" who has been "unfairly treated" by the media. Has this become the standard by which our nation judges candidates for the highest office in the land?

If anyone has not watched the Palin interviews in question, please watch them yourself -- they are easily available online. Do not rely on the spin of the campaigns.

As for unfair treatment, it seems to me it's the McCain campaign that is treating Palin unfairly. Palin seems like a strong, smart candidate who one hopes is more than ready and qualified to be president of this great nation (presumably, this is why McCain chose her as his running mate). The McCain campaign is not doing her a favor by forbidding her to take questions from voters and the media alike. The McCain campaign should stop its sexist treatment of Palin and let her views and opinions be heard, so that voters can make an informed decision on Nov. 4.

QUYEN TRAN, MINNEAPOLIS