Mayor Dave's green team
Bill Lueders: Allow me to apologize on behalf of progressives in Madison for what you correctly identify as our willingness to let our mayor be skewered by the likes of Rick Berg and Vicki McKenna ("Too Green for Madison?" 8/29/08). Too long has the right attacked the left for being too soft, and shame on us for not standing up for our ideals and dreams.
Mayor Dave's idea of building an auto-light and environmentally green neighborhood should be defended to the hilt as a good model for how communities should be planned in the near future. The position of conservative blowhards who attack our mayor for this plan serve only to show how out of touch they are. Their knee-jerk defense of the car culture should serve as a call to arms for progressives everywhere.
I was very interested in "Too Green for Madison?" This was the first I'd heard about the mayor's idea. I found his plan very exciting, and I believe it would be welcomed by the majority of citizens.
I've used solar collectors to heat my hot water supply with significant energy savings. And my curly light bulbs are very artistic.
One person may find change stressful; another finds it adventuresome. But people must change their lifestyles to adjust to our changing world.
Mayor Dave has been a wonderful leader for Madison. He is thoughtful, creative and progressive.
I originally came to Madison for graduate school and have been impressed by the city's bike paths and excellent weekday bus system. Madisonians obviously support green options, with local produce readily available and hybrid cars around every corner.
It would be great to have a rail system that reached outlying neighboring cities such as Beloit, Sun Prairie and Milwaukee. This would probably come as a relief for all of the commuters stuck on I-90 this past February. Current park-and-ride users and state van-pool commuters would have more railway pick-up and drop-off time options. And a railway would allow for commuting in and out of Madison.
From my understanding, extending the car-light concept to all of Madison would mean that each neighborhood has its own group of buses that run several times per hour. Only a handful of buses would be used to circulate within a neighborhood, while a fast rail system would be used to interconnect the main hubs, thus providing more convenient service.
Build it, make it convenient, and they will come. I want Mayor Dave to know there are supporters in Madison for his neighborhood plan, but like me they don't know how to show our interest. Please tell us what we can do.
Eibsee Christine Marquez
Bill Lueders is right on the money: Madison needs light rail (street cars and the like) and commuter rail. I've been to cities in the U.S. and Great Britain that have public rail transportation, and it beats driving a car any day.
In the U.S., a prime example of public transportation is San Francisco. I've been there a couple of times, once for pleasure and once for work. I soon found that public transportation was the means to get anywhere in that city. Definitely a lot easier than what is available here.
As for Great Britain, I stayed with a friend who lives near the south shore of England. For a day trip to London, we just went to the local train station early in the morning, parked the car, for free, in the lot and bought rail day passes. Those day passes are good on all trains in and out of London, and anywhere else for that matter.
I avoid downtown as much as possible because it is a pain to get there in a reasonable amount of time by our bus system, and parking sucks. If we had light rail that went from West to East Towne, through downtown, I'd park at West Towne and take the train.
In response to the article "Too Green for Madison?", we want to let people know about an existing development where kids can bike on paths free of cars, where some residents sell power back to the grid and heat their water with the sun, and where many folks bike and bus to work.We invite you to come and check out the award-winning Troy Gardens Co-housing Community on Madison's north side.We wholeheartedly support Mayor Dave in creating more car-light, human-scale, community-focused neighborhoods. Troy Gardens is a step in this direction and we hope there will be many more to come in Madison.
Mark Sundlin & Megan Cain
Vicki McKenna and Rick Berg are against the mayor's transit ideas.That's why the plan has my support. The principal Berg/McKenna objection is the loss of their sacred right to drive around town as much as they want.
At the same time, they back George Bush, who has walked over the Constitution so many ways you can't keep track. I can almost hear them say: "We approve of your detention and illegal torture, but, rest assured, once you are released, if ever, we will defend your rights as a motorist." All that's lacking are supporting WMC attack ads like, "Give up your cars and you can bet the guns come next."
I'm not sure who is more pathetic - the writer John Mendels(s)sohn, for believing he is so cute, or Isthmus for running "Morning Stars" (8/29/08).
Granted, there is much to criticize in the morning news shows.They are mind-numbingly light on content, for starters.But to so freely criticize these individuals who get up early each day and work hard at their jobs seems wrong.Indeed, any of us observed in our place of work could be mocked in such a caustic manner.I hope Isthmus works to elevate the local level of discourse by offering more thoughtful critiques.
Chris Vander Ark
Folks around Madison don't need to be told they are watching a little fluff in the morning. We are going to absorb all the meanness, mayhem and monsoons into our lives throughout the day. Is it really so anti-intellectually low-brow to want to wake up and not have to bear the cross of doom right away? If I've got to turn on the TV to see someone (anyone) smiling first thing in the morning, can you cut me a little slack, Mr. Critic?
Listen, John, I've been watching Christine [Bellport] and Charlie [Shortino] for a long time. They've become kind of like friends to me. And now you tell me my friends are sort of shallow, dull and clone-like. Thank God! 'Cause that's the way most folks are, and I surely do love people. I hope someday you can come on down and watch The Price Is Right with me. We'd have a blast.
Thanks for Mendels(s)ohn's article "Morning Stars." Parts of it are insightful, like viewing co-anchoring as "the last resort for the person who loves to perform...but wouldn't otherwise be able to command attention." However, the anchors who were singled out must have been trained for their positions and hired for their talents. They are on the payroll for a reason!
They must follow the rules, such as respecting the time allotted to them. They can't uncaringly mispronounce names or ignore cues or signals to wind up their spot. Sure, some stories can be classified as "fillers," but the truly professional anchor knows when to shut up and move on.
Anchors must show a high degree of ethics, professionalism and courtesy or they can kiss their jobs goodbye. I enjoy the broadcasts of the announcers mentioned in the article and applaud their courage to face the public everyday with a cheerful demeanor.