Why should taxpayers? foot the bill for inmates?

I find it very disturbing that the State Commission of Correction faults Erie County Sheriff Timothy Howard for improperly spending the inmates' "pot of money." These men and women are in prison for committing some sort of crime. I think that some of their money should be spent on programs to help them realize that what they did to get themselves put in prison was wrong, i.e., counseling, etc.

I also believe the Sheriff's Office should not be faulted for using inmate money to relieve the burden on taxpayers for the care, custody and control of inmates. They brought this on themselves. Why should we be responsible for the full cost of their care? Thanks to the Sheriff's Department and Howard for using inmate money to help pay for costs incurred because of the crimes they commit.

James Miller

South Buffalo


Don't attack Collins ?for being successful

The most insidious of all the campaign ads is the one that is supposed to make us envious of Chris Collins' 6,000-square-foot house and his net worth of $102 million.

How many people were put to work building that house? How many dollars in property taxes does that house generate? How many dollars in utility taxes and fees does it generate? How many people does that $102 million pay? Don't those jobs generate tax dollars for the government in many different ways? Don't those jobs give workers a way to provide for their families?

I am not envious of Collins' big house or his money. He has done more than his fair share to contribute to our society. That kind of expertise in Congress can only be a further asset to those of us who value hard work and success.

Patti Rusch



Amherst vote takes money? away from charitable causes

With the 5-1 vote taken on Oct. 22 by the Amherst Town Board regarding fees for police escorts for charity races, it truly is a shame that donated race dollars are being taken away from these worthwhile causes. Well, the town does have to pay some lifetime health insurance fees for some retirees.

Doreen Park



When firms restructure,? do retirees disappear?

The Oct. 21 News article, "When employees retire, but costs don't," quoted Mitt Romney's opposition to President Obama's auto bailout. In Romney's view, the automakers need to drastically restructure and relieve themselves of "insurmountable labor and retiree burdens," among other things.

No question, automakers need to address unsustainable costs. Here are questions he doesn't seem to ask. When companies restructure to cut retiree benefits, do retirees go away? Have they not forgone current wages over the course of their working lives for the expectation of benefits in retirement? Should industry be encouraged to shift the "burden" of past decision-making off their books to society? And whose voice should be at the table when those decisions are negotiated?

Salaried retirees at Delphi should be bitter. It's not fair. They absorbed the sacrifice because their bargaining leverage is weak. Hourly employees through the United Auto Workers have a place at the table. At Ford, for example, the company and the UAW worked together to avoid bankruptcy. Can there be a better example of the value of collective bargaining? Thank goodness the UAW gives voice to the interests of autoworkers it represents.

Romney's prescription would be to let the industry and bankruptcy courts decide. How much worse would the impact on communities like Lockport be if Delphi retirees, both salaried and hourly, were "burdened" with a significant denial of earned benefits?

Susan Woods



Trump's ravings? reveal a buffoon

It must be obvious to Donald Trump by now that most Americans think his ravings about our president's birth and nationality not only are the ravings of a fraud and a lunatic, but are those of a man who simply needs to be heard and adored. He most certainly is adored – but by so few fringe individuals that it shouldn't be worth the time of such an "eminent" millionaire businessman.

How sad for Trump that, increasingly, his role in the Republican Party is as a muckraker and buffoon in chief. Many Americans feel President Obama has been a superior leader, especially facing opposition determined to degrade him and willing to sacrifice our country's principles, while at the same time dealing with the self-serving, mentally challenged.

Marlene Joseph

East Amherst


President fools people? into thinking he cares

There is a sense among voters who lean toward President Obama that he "cares" more about people. That he "cares" more about the poor. That he "cares" more about the elderly. That he "cares" more about women.

Let's be realistic. Obama didn't care about J. Christopher Stevens, his own ambassador to Libya. Stevens repeatedly begged for more security. Nope. Sorry. No can do. This is because the need for more security meant that Obama's "smoke and mirrors" policies in the Middle East weren't working. In the new, dreamy world of Obama, everyone in the Middle East was supposed to like us.

Stevens and three staffers were so brutally murdered that we still haven't been told everything about what happened. Obama murmured his condolences and cockamamie explanations from the campaign trail in Las Vegas. Look at the photographic evidence that has come from the Middle East. All that's left of Obama's "smoke and mirrors" policy is the smoke.

So if you think Obama cares about you, reflect for a moment on the Obama scenario for Stevens. Twenty-six Marines to meet the ambassador's body at Andrews Air Force Base. No Marines, zero Marines, to protect him in Benghazi.
Thank you for caring, Obama!

Connie Wolfinger



TV mute buttons? getting a workout

Our TV remote is about to fail. After repeated muting of political ads, it's reached the end of life expectancy. Early in the campaign process this year, it became evident that the TV ads put forth by both the local and national candidates were lacking in both fact and truth. Viewers hoping for useful information for choosing candidates soon realized that the ads were essentially political "propaganda" threatening the sense of rational voters. They, most likely like me, resorted to the mute button. The 2012 campaign ads mark a new and hopefully last low mark in election campaigns. After the elections, electronics retailers should be prepared for a sharp increase in sales of replacement TV remote units.

Dan Massing