Pharmacists have role
As a retired pharmacist, I would like to thank you for your recent coverage of pharmacists' participation in administering the covid-19 vaccine. I believe that the pharmacists in general have been the most under-utilized profession within the medical community, and truly appreciate the work that members within the association have done to alleviate that. Also, I would like to thank the other members of the different medical professions for their willing acceptance and encouragement in the expansion of pharmacies' role in health care, as pharmacists in general are the mostly widely available health-care professionals.
North Little Rock
In response to the three points in Paul Krugman's column on Feb. 13:
- I was glad to see Krugman say Biden's $1.9 trillion plan is not a stimulus, but instead is disaster relief. I agree we should help those who need help. There is absolutely no need for an additional $1,400 blanket giveaway to every person.
- Krugman said Obama's stimulus was unpopular because it included Wall Street bailouts. Biden's $1.9 trillion plan also includes bailouts. I have seen arguments that most states have not suffered tax revenue losses, and do not need the Biden money. Also, do we really need to give many more millions to the Kennedy Center for Performing Arts?
- Krugman has repeatedly and incorrectly stated that larger federal budget deficits don't matter. That is just crazy. Currently our government is $27 trillion in debt, and that amount is quickly going higher. I agree with Krugman that the Trump tax cuts contributed to the mess we are in now.
The bottom line is if the United States cannot gain financial discipline (begin controlling spending and/or raising taxes), our country is destined for total failure.
Instead of claiming a lack of guilt, our two esteemed senators excuse their latest vote by professing that the Constitution specifies that impeachment is reserved for sitting officials. I would remind them that Donald Trump was the sitting president when he was impeached. And thus, being impeached already, they were voting only on the issue of removal from office, which admittedly was moot. However, embedded in the removal is the stipulation that he could never hold another office. This I see as very much to the point, and more than worthy of their serious consideration.
I would also add my dismay to the many comments concerning their seeming total lack of respect to their solemn oath to the Constitution of the United States of America and their solemn obligation to me. History will record that when they were asked, they both responded, "Not guilty."
After watching television coverage of the anticlimactic Senate vote in Donald Trump's second impeachment trial, it reminded me of a Christmas card an attorney friend of mine sent me quite a few years ago.
The setting was a courtroom. A very addled-looking Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer was sitting at the defense table, evidently brought up on charges of vandalism, destruction of public and private property, and/or perhaps guiding a sleigh while under the influence; whatever. Tangled in his antlers was the evidence of an open-and-shut case: A string of Christmas lights; a clothesline with laundry still attached; the top part of a broken telephone pole; a couple of traffic signals; and a rooftop TV antenna. (That last one was your clue to just how long ago this took place.)
The presiding judge was none other than Santa Claus, and in the jury box, only coincidentally, I'm sure, sat a dozen elves. The prosecuting attorney was just about to sit down at the opposing counsel's table when he noticed this scene laid out before him, and his face suddenly displayed a mixture of confusion and shock.
Rudolph's defense attorney, sporting a big grin, leaned over and whispered in his client's ear, "Relax, kid. This one's in the bag."
Protect solar access
Solar energy can help Arkansas stay "The Natural State" and save a lot of money in the process. The public and our legislators agreed with this sentiment when the Solar Access Act was passed in 2019. The impact solar can have for the economy is tremendous. Installing solar helped the Batesville School District right here in Arkansas turn a $250,000 deficit into a $1.8 million surplus, allowing it to give teachers raises.
Unfortunately, utility companies in our state are largely concerned by the thought of widespread solar access and are actively trying to undermine the Solar Access Act. The solar industry is projected to be the third-fastest growing job market in the U.S. during the next decade, and Arkansas ranks 11th in the nation for solar energy potential.
I urge our Legislature to protect the Solar Act. This Legislature can create jobs, save money, and preserve everything we love about the Natural State. Arkansas has a real opportunity to be a leader in solar energy that shouldn't be squandered by utility companies.
Arkansans deserve the right to produce their own renewable energy.