Alibi V.18 No.19 • May 7-13, 2009 



Dear Alibi,

It's been awhile since I picked up an Alibi. I recently needed to visit a public restroom and an Alibi was handy—apparently for more than just reading. I guess I missed a letter from that crazy guy "The Don" [Re: Letters, “The Don’s Raw Food Manifesto,” April 23-29] I thought he was dead or something. I realized why I hadn't picked [up] an Alibi; You're still printing the same tired crap and sickening preachy letters from that insane and worn-out meathead. Really. There are a lot of nuts in this town. Can't you give them a chance and retire Meathead? And, ¡Ask a Mexican!? Give me a break. I can't wait to visit another public restroom to see how you have progressed.

Rachel Ticotin


Cup of Tea?

Dear Alibi,

[Re: Ortiz y Pino, "Tempest in a Tea Cup," April 30-May 6] It is no surprise that Jerry Ortiz y Pino does not support or even understand the tea party movement. While the Rio Grande Foundation was not involved in organizing the April 15 Albuquerque Tea Party, we have been working closely with the leaders of the movement to transform it from an amorphous one-day protest event into a viable pro-taxpayer movement.

Ortiz y Pino mistakenly focuses on taxation. The real genesis of the tea party movement was not taxes but out-of-control spending and the debts we are leaving our children. If the left has a valid point about the tea parties, it is that they did not spring up under President Bush, who massively expanded government and placed burdens on our children and grandchildren via policies like the Medicare Prescription Drug Bill and the Iraq War that we’ll be paying for long into the future.

“The tea party movement is not simply a bunch of angry Republicans”

But rather than admitting that we as a nation face dire fiscal issues and questioning the merits of trillions of dollars of bailouts (a policy begun under Bush but expanded under Obama), Ortiz y Pino ignores this inconvenient truth. Our nation’s massive debt and unfunded liabilities—at more than $65 trillion, it now exceeds the GDP of the world—is conveniently ignored by both parties, neither of which actually want to address the issues at hand.

The tea party movement is not simply a bunch of angry Republicans who don’t like Obama and understand their own self-interest as Ortiz y Pino asserts. Rather, the tea party, at least here in Albuquerque, was organized by average citizens who are terrified of what the government is doing to our economy. The fact is that America can’t live on borrowed money forever.

Paul J. Gessing

President, Rio Grande Foundation



Dear Alibi,

[Re: Ortiz y Pino, "Tempest in a Tea Cup," April 30-May 6] Jerry Ortiz y Pino's column is right on, as his columns usually are.

One of the biggest cons of the many perpetrated upon the American public in the name of conservatism or freedom is the trashing of the concept of taxation. Taxation, after all, is simply the pooling together of a portion of everybody's money for the common good. This ideal is, of course, never fully realized; but, like any other kind of perfection, is worth working toward.

The concept of checks and balances does not refer only to the three branches of government. It also, in my opinion, tries to balance the interests of groups in society: big business, small business, labor, the rich, the poor, the middle classes, the unemployed and so forth. Fair taxation, when it actually happens, is the only fundraising method that stands a chance of financially assisting this concept.

In Albuquerque, for example, public-good organizations like the police, the Fire Department, the BioPark and others have to operate charitable arms and concoct nickel-and-dime schemes to raise the money they should be getting from the entire public, not just the affluent or generous. This is wrong.

Thanks again, Jerry.

JW Madison

Small business owner


Piece of My (Sweet)Heart

Dear Alibi,

I want to express my appreciation for the article on the South Valley Economic Development Center [Feature, "The Sweetheart Deal," April 30-May 6] and the work of Tony Gallegos in helping new, independent business ventures. His work is a healthy antidote to Mayor Martin Chavez' "a Wal-Mart on every corner" crap.

In addition to his support and assistance for local independent businesses, he is also an excellent resource for local agriculture and the efforts to increase the amount of food we produce for local consumption. What would be truly helpful is if his efforts were fully funded so the work could be expanded. The result would be a much healthier community and a more solid economic base for the South Valley.

John Shipley

Executive Director, Rio Grande Valley Farmers Guild


I Want to Ride My Bicycle

Beloved Motorists,

Bicycle Boulevards have begun! Have you noticed the lovely purple street signs on Silver Avenue, 14th Street, Mountain Road; the delightful 18 mph speed limits; the beautiful bicycle graphics on the asphalt? Do yourselves a favor: Relinquish these streets to your two-wheeler sisters and brothers! Give up a little privilege and be proud.

Next step: Depave Central Avenue. Imagine gardens, fountains, hammocks, skateboards, pedestrians, bicycle paths, sculpture, musicians ...

Hershel Weiss (car-free since 2001)


Dear John

Dear Albuquerque,

I’m leaving you.

When we first met, things were great! I loved the friendly atmosphere, the open vibe of the people. Everyone happily shared their Land of Enchantment with me, and I jumped headfirst into love. You were intelligent, and I defended you to people saying you were temperamental, even violent, profuse in my adoration of your valleys and mountains. I’ve been in a veritable bliss, hiking, cruising, camping all over.

Lately, though, you’ve been different. Your people are no longer open but hostile. Help is hard to come by, kindness almost extinct. Things don’t run properly, nobody knows what’s going on. You’re not sweet anymore. Police officers exemplify how people believe it is their right to behave rudely, and any challenge to that is grounds for violence. You abuse me and expect me to think it’s normal. This past year, my neighbors have drunkenly threatened me and my loved ones repeatedly late at night, my car was knocked out of its parking spot when I left it at a roller derby match, money disappears from my workplace regularly, and I was placed under false arrest inside Albertsons for trying to cash a valid money order.

Finally, today, a beautiful 300-pound woman in her red Ford SUV tried hard to run me off the road with the intent of hurting or even killing me and my husband before threatening to back into us after we tried get away from her. Because I moved into her lane to turn left.

I can’t deal with your negativity anymore. I feel threatened with you, as sad as I am to go. I hope you’ll be happy and the people that do stay don’t corrode you from the inside out.


Hannah Bee


Come One, Come All Psychics

Dear Alibi,

I listened to an interview yesterday on 94 Rock with your columnist Benjamin Radford. He is always interesting and raised a very good question: Where are the psychics who often volunteer to help law enforcement? Why have they not come forward to help solve the mystery of the West Mesa tragedy? Have they already helped authorities who are reluctant to divulge this to the public for fear of ridicule?

Martha Cushing


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