Dems should help keep wages low
Bill Lueders: I seriously take issue with your opinion, "Dems Don't Do the Minimum," 1/5/10 [on the failure of Democrats to pass an increase in the state minimum wage]. We are currently in a recession, and businesses aren't doing well. The unemployment rate only went down this month because people gave up looking for jobs, not because more people went back to work.
So if a company has less money coming in, and the government makes it pay workers more through minimum wage, will it hire more workers or fewer workers? Isn't earning something better than earning nothing these days?
I cannot believe a Wisconsin senator blames the failure of a minimum-wage proposal on "too many business Democrats," as if it's a bad thing that they are actually taking their constituents' livelihood into consideration.
If you price the cost of labor above what the market can bear, you get less demand (from employers) and, hence, fewer employees. You also price teenagers seeking their first job out of the workplace and out of much-needed entry-level experience.
It is not the government's responsibility, through minimum-wage legislation, to force employers to pay for unskilled labor at an above-market cost. There is not enough personal responsibility anymore, and the government is already trying to do too many things.
Yahara rail site is best
The only location of an Amtrak station in Madison that makes any logistical sense is the "Yahara River" site on East Washington Avenue at the old Fiore Shopping Center ("Rail Issue: Station Location," 2/12/10). The reasons for this are so numerous this issue would not even be controversial if it weren't for political considerations that have nothing to do with cost and passenger convenience.
Yes, the Dane County Airport has parking facilities, but the most desirable of these (the ramp located adjacent to the terminal) is already being heavily used. The amount of parking spaces in the lot at the old Fiore Shopping center may well exceed the number of available spaces for Amtrak passengers at the airport ramp.
In fact, it is likely that there will be so much parking capacity at an Amtrak station at First and East Washington that it could serve as a "discount" satellite lot for airline passengers who could use this same shuttle to get to the airport.
In his article on the court of appeals election ("Psst, Appeals Court Election Looms," 2/12/10), why would Bill Lueders write that "Ramona Gonzalez clucked" in describing her position?
Elsewhere, he says fellow candidates Brian Blanchard "disagreed" and Edward Leineweber "touted." But the only female in the race "CLUCKED." Bill, don't you know better?
Bill Lueders replies: I use the word "clucked" occasionally and not in a gender-specific way. The last time (aren't key word searches great?) was in December 2008, when I said a freed convict's attorney - the very male Steve Hurley - "clucked" about the prosecution's refusal to admit error. In the two other cases that come up in a search for "clucked" and "Lueders," the clucking was done by The Capital Times and Wisconsin State Journal, respectively.