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Miss Petrino right now

Bret Bielema makes me wish we had Bobby Petrino back. Sure, he had a little problem with the truth, but had a 109-42 win/loss record as a college head coach, and he has more class than to berate his players in the state newspaper when they don't meet his expectations.

While I'm on the subject, we don't need a second-class reporter to report his rantings either. Cole Hedlund had a bad day kicking, but when he missed the first field goal, Bielema should have known something was wrong with his concentration/coordination and put Mazza in for the next field-goal attempt. A kicker with a near 100 percent success rate with over 100 extra point attempts who then misses a 23-yard field-goal attempt is without question having a bad day.

I would go further and say I think Bielema should have gone for the touchdown. There's not much difference in turning the ball over from a missed field goal or failing to get the touchdown. Going for the touchdown might have let your team know that you have confidence in them and changed the outcome of the game.

Bielema said he's seen enough of Hedlund. I've seen enough of Bielema. Bring Petrino back and fire the athletic director.


Litte Rock

On matters spiritual

With the recent complaint of too many spiritual input letters on the Voices page, I'm reminded of my missionary mother's statement: "Offend them? How can you offend them? They are going to hell!"

Eternity is a very long time, thus a little input about it is quite appropriate.



Understanding grows

During the recent EC Farms hearing in Jasper, a major flaw with the state Department of Environmental Quality's permitting process stuck out to me. No-discharge permits for land application of animal waste are granted into perpetuity. Although major permit modifications necessitate agency review and allow for limited public participation on proposed modifications, original permit conditions are not subject to review after it is granted.

In theory, I can see where arguments could be made that if the initial permit review is sufficient and permittees adhere to their requirements, there should be no need to renew or revise such permits. After all, many would argue that requiring such permit renewals would be overly burdensome. But many would also argue that the state does not give sufficient consideration to environmental impacts, especially regarding karst landscapes.

However, it's irrelevant whether you believe the permit reviews and considerations are sufficient. The fact remains that our scientific understanding is constantly growing. Information on nutrient uptake and transport, fate of antibiotics and pathogens, localized studies on direction of subsurface flow, and vulnerable areas are regularly updated. Our knowledge of flood-prone areas is continuously revised due to landscape and hydrologic alteration, as well as climate change. Even updated water-quality status information indicating impairments from agricultural runoff does not get taken into consideration.

Granting permits into perpetuity is essentially acknowledging that we're fine with being ignorant about new information that could help us better protect water quality in the natural state. That's not okay.


Little Rock

Play in-state schools

I see where the athletic director for the U of A says that he will never play other schools within the state. I think it's time for our cowardly state Legislature to get off their duffs and force the U of A to play other state-supported schools.

As it stands right now, Frank Broyles was right; the U of A is not a state school, it is the University of Fayetteville. If the U of A will not play other schools, the U of A should not receive state support. Other states' legislatures have forced in-state schools to play, and now they're big rivalries.

Arkansas needs to get out of the Dark Ages!


Little Rock

To protect consumers

After banks crashed our economy in 2009--and citizens paid their bailout--their unethical practices became exposed. Wells Fargo, for example, secretly opened additional accounts and credit cards for customers, often forging their signatures, to charge more fees.

Individuals who each lost hundreds can't afford individual lawyers; that's what class-action suits are for. But bank contracts required individual arbitration, preventing lawsuits. So banks defrauded people without it being public, or punished.

Last year we learned Wells Fargo had indeed done this to millions of customers. So recently the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau banned banks from requiring mandatory arbitration.

Now Republicans plan to destroy the CFPB to undo the ruling. Sen. Tom Cotton states on his website, never mentioning what the ruling is, that it "ignores the consumer benefits of arbitration," and is "hurting consumers." That is blatantly untrue; mandatory arbitration disenfranchises consumers. (And the arbitrators work for the banks.)

Senator Cotton also does not mention that financial-sector donors gave him more than $3 million, according to Public Citizen. And the 24 U.S. Senate co-sponsors of repealing the ban (including Sen. John Boozman) received more than $100 million from the financial sector.

Banning banks from forcing mandatory arbitration on customers was necessary and well-planned, not arbitrary.

Let Sen. Tom Cotton and Sen. John Boozman know that voters will not accept corporations' use of mandatory arbitration clauses to hide abusive, unethical and criminal practices, and to deprive consumers of their right to relief in the courts.



Tissues still needed

Between the president, the weather, and the Hogs, I don't know whether to laugh or cry anymore.



Editorial on 09/18/2017

Print Headline: Letters

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