Job re-creation

Where's the common sense? Why not recapture the manufacturing and service jobs that were shipped offshore and put Americans to work? This would be an appropriate use of tax credits - reopening and rebuilding closed factories. This would increase the employment rolls with taxpaying workers who can then purchase homes and furnish them with American-made products.

Jim Holmes

Tax beer

In the interest of increasing state revenues, Gov. Rendell should substantially increase taxes on alcoholic beverages, especially beer. Most politicians are afraid to tackle this issue, because of the "macho man" ripple it may cause, but with the decrease in the smoking population, constantly hitting on smokers is not the answer. In the process of raising considerably more revenue, the state also would be helping to save lives. The governor's a big, tough guy. I'm sure he can handle the fallout.

Herbert Hoffman
Bryn Mawr

Jobless graduates

Here we go with the liftoff of a $789 billion economic-stimulus package to get our nation out of the hole. It includes extended unemployment insurance for those people suffering from lost jobs. That is great for the people suffering from job loss or insufficient finances, but what about the people who have yet to secure a job? As a student graduating college in May 2009, I will be hit hard by this economic crisis. What in this plan is going to create jobs for all of us now looking for employment? How is making plans for a more stable job market in the next five years going to help us now? I believe in our president, but I need to see action now.

Jennifer Boris
West Chester

Guitar Grammy

Of all the well-deserved Grammys, there was one that should have received more mention. Although a technical award, the Grammy to Leo Fender deserved more notice, because the widespread use of his guitars and amps probably has touched everyone's musical career.

Dave Petersen

Fixing performance

Our society is one in which people are conditioned to medicate their deficiencies, real or perceived. Recently, a group of physicians advocated that otherwise healthy persons take Ritalin to enhance their cognitive abilities.

Why is this different from A-Rod's medicating himself to enhance his physical prowess? It's a bad idea in both cases. If drugs are taken to treat the symptoms of a problem, perhaps the problem itself should be addressed directly. Should the deficiency be one of perception, the alternative is to accept ourselves as we are. The "treatment" is to make the best use of the talents we have.

Ken Kelly
West Chester

Natural plastic

Re: "She wants to say 2 words: No plastics," Monday:

The widespread use of hydrocarbon plastics has become a global nightmare. But plastics, per se, are not the problem. It is that they are made from toxic industrial substances.

This is tragic in that benign alternatives exist. The most promising source of nontoxic, biodegradable plastics is the hemp plant, because it has extraordinary strength, requires no pesticides, does not leach industrial contaminants into food products, does not need chlorine bleaching, and can even be composted in one's veggie garden. Hemp agriculture would significantly lower the "need" for oil, minimize toxics in the trash stream, and benefit human and wildlife health. But, unfortunately, hemp agriculture is illegal in the United States under federal antimarijuana laws.

John Jonik

Overlooked danger

The controversy concerning Philadelphia's being owed $1 billion in bail money speaks only about the financial side of the story. What is not mentioned is that the forfeiture of bail money means criminal defendants remained on the streets. Isn't this a more important and dangerous issue?

Edward Hall