Tue, 02/28/2006 - 4:54pm
By: The Citizen

This is in response to a letter in the 2/22/06 column advocating a change in the yearly school calendar to eliminate the February break. The author claims that a vast majority of the parents do not like the break. Did the author take a poll? Where is the data to back this claim? The author certainly does not speak for me. I happen to love the mid-February break. It gives me a chance to, yes, go skiing with my family. This is the only other time available during the school year, except for Christmas when the slopes are more crowded, to have a ski week without taking them out of school, which I do not condone. Personally, I don’t think we need a longer summer break. The kids can sit around playing videos and watching TV at this time also. What I would like to advocate for is a year-round school schedule providing siblings are on the same track (it works in California); or better yet, a realignment of the summer break. I propose the school year end in mid June and begin after Labor Day. Wouldn’t this schedule allow a longer window of time to have a vacation with those extended family members? (That is, IF you want to spend time with your adult siblings and their families. If not, there’s always friends.) Many Northern, Central and Midwestern schools follow this schedule. As more and more families are spread over the country, scheduling family reunions can become a juggling nightmare, as our current schedule allows only the month of July to fit in a vacation with those families and friends; that’s if one can get a week off in July from their place of work. Regional businesses would benefit also; everyone would not be requesting their vacation from the six weeks spanning mid June to end of July. I would like to see one of these suggestions seriously considered by the BOE.

Here we go again. Some 6,000 pilots threatening to go on strike because they are not getting their way. Go figure. Wake up, fellas; once again you are not in this alone. In fact your decisions will affect the lives of more than 44,000 coworkers. Even with the concessions you are being asked to give, you’ll still stand near the top of the industry. If you haven’t noticed in the last couple of years, everything has changed. The days of super high wages are over; you might just have to get a second job, just like the rest of America. Your wives might even have to pitch in, getting a job also. I know that’s extremely hard to fathom, but it’s reality. It’s time to take some responsibility and realize the old management team made some severe mistakes, not the least of which was paying Delta pilots 40 percent more than the market would bear. Bankruptcy is difficult for us all; most of us would love the power to make or break Delta (concede or strike). I’ll just tell you if you don’t already know, most of us would concede, not only because it’s the right thing to do, but because we couldn’t live with the alternative. I know to be a pilot requires nerves of steel; however, those nerves are supposed to be attached to a heart. Stop playing games with our future, Delta Air Lines is in bankruptcy, time is of the essence. Greed (Leo Mullins) got us where we are today, don’t let greed seal our fate. — 20 year Delta employee.

To the pilot who will “never win the public’s understanding of his pay or his job”: I am sorry that you have “a hard time accepting opinions given out of ignorance or envy.” However, thank you for reaffirming just how out of touch with reality you and your ALPA brethren are. I am so tired of whining Delta pilots. I suggest another early lesson to teach your children: Humility. Fact: Not everyone is jealous that they are not a pilot. Fact: To date, a 34 percent raise in 2000 making Delta pilots the “highest paid in the world” along with an additional 5 percent raise taken less than two years ago when Delta’s lot was already obvious, makes them no different than the greedy management team which also knowingly took money they knew the company could not afford. Together, this adds up to approximately a 6 percent pay cut since 2000, using ALPA’s 45 percent pay cut figure in the last year. ALPA forgets to mention that in their “woe is me” press briefings. Any other employee at Delta Airlines would be ecstatic to earn what they were in pre-2000, or even in 1990 for that matter. In addition, if the company gets what it wants from the pilots, they would still be earning approximately 9 percent more than the contract Northwest pilots just negotiated. The person whose letter you rebutted hardly seemed a “poor unhappy soul,” but that’s right, his envy of you must make him one. I’m glad you choose “to speak with one voice through your union.” Since you “are the union” here’s a suggestion: Get a clue. Join the real world and get off your “Envy” high horse. Take an economics class and maybe an ethics course and do what needs to be done. When the tide turns you’ll still have leverage but in the meantime don’t demean your profession by living up to and espousing all of its stereotypes.

Just sitting here watching the local news and another story about the Delta pilots comes on. Give me a break, pilots. Do you really think your informational picket line is going to make a difference? You better really all start thinking about what will happen if you strike. Do you consider the livelihood of the tens of thousands of other Delta employees? Please don’t tell us that is why you are doing this. I for one would be happy to have a job regardless of the fact that wages are being cut. Sorry you have lived above your means all these years and can’t afford what you own now. My family is also suffering and I’d like us to at least keep what we have. If you aren’t happy with what you’ve got maybe some other pilot might like the opportunity to sit in your cockpits. Let’s not forget what the airline industry looks like as a whole. Do you really think you’ll be able to find other employment when you put Delta Airlines under? If you do, you’re more arrogant, egotistical and ignorant then we all thought you were.

Republicans used to claim they’d get the government off our backs. So now they are promoting laws which would require hospitals, clinics and Western Union offices to check that everyone of us is a legal resident of the U.S., which means all of us have to be ready to prove our citizenship every time. Now, that’s a hassle for everybody, and especially for those who have to do the checking. Is that getting the government off our back?

It is scary to drive Peachtree Parkway south of Ga. Highway 54 at night, especially when it is (or has been) raining. Reflectors would be a great move toward safety. At minimum, repainting the lines is absolutely necessary. This has been a hazard for drivers in this community for too long.

I pay a considerable amount of school tax; I have no children in school. Socialism? It rains on my property and runs into a lake nearby where it drains normally, but my town taxes apparently aren’t sufficient to dredge the lake every 20 or so years? By the way, are these additional employees covered by the town’s health insurance and pension plan? If so, why aren’t they town employees? A pittance fee by the Authority takes care of it, I suppose. Here are some further suggestions to raise money, create tax-paid jobs and call the tax “fees”: Cubic feet of air breathed, based on weight; cost of jobs created by the local government for authorities and such, divided by the population; developer’s slush fund to tide them after build-out; a privilege of residing in PTC fee, annually; tires and oil changes fee for the school busses and county vehicles (2900 at last count); an hourly lotto here in town but if you don’t play you can’t live here; a restaurant worker’s fee to pay waiters and waitresses, or is it “Waitrii”? So there can be too many restaurants where the owners don’t have to pay the help over $2 per hour with no benefits.

Back in December, a Fayetteville police officer noticed that the Georgia tag decal was stolen from my car. Since I live in PTC, he gave me a phone number to call. I called and had an officer at my house very shortly. He wrote up a report and said that it will be mailed to me in about 7-10 days and then take it to our tag office in Fayetteville, where it will be taken care of. Fact is, as I found out, that PTC Police Department does not mail copies of reports to anyone. You have to go to the Police Department and pay $5 either by check or money order, no cash, for a copy of the incident report. (It is $ 4 in Fayetteville and no cost in Tyrone). Took my copy to Fayetteville and received a replacement tag for $8. In total, I had to spend $13 and mileage to replace a stolen decal. Something just does not seem right with this system.

In the PTC 2006 budget, the police department claims they will make 1,767,060 business checks. That means the PD is expected to make 4,841 per day. Do they count every drive-by of the Waffle House as a business check? I’m curious as to how our PD will spend the expected $47,399 that they will collect from the alcohol/server/registration fees?

What is going on in the White House? For years we are told that [Muslim fanatics] are not to be trusted. Ayatollah and Osama Bin Laden and an entire bunch of Middle Eastern folks in between. And now our president is telling us that he is going to veto any legislation that is going to block the United Arab Emirates from managing most of our high-volume seaports. Hey, we got our airports all nailed down with the TSA, and we got laws in the oven to cook any illegals from coming into the U.S., so why, tell my why, is it OK to let the [Muslims] from the UAE handle the security of our sea ports? Something stinks and I don’t like it at all.

Just a small heads up for anyone who may be affected by the information I am about to provide concerning Representative David Scott of the 13th District of the House of Representatives, also a member of the House’s Financial Services Committee. Representative Scott’s Chief of Staff Rob Griner has been appointed V.P. of Government Relations, a lobbyist, for J.P. Morgan Chase. You may know them, if you have ever had the misfortune of doing any business with them, as Chase Credit Cards (currently raising interest rates to cover multiple buyouts and Enron lawsuits), Chase Auto Finance (also many consumer complaints) and other often predatory ventures. Check the information out for yourself and draw your own conclusions.

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