By Readers

Virg for Gov?

As a Lansing resident I am both shocked and offended that you would criticize Mayor Virg Bernero for encouraging his constituents to speak out against national interest issues that affect this city every single day. In Lansing, we are intelligent enough to realize that any progress we make as a city is only sustainable through viable and sound policies at the national level.

I understand you may be upset that the mayor may be leaving his post, however, don’t attack Bernero for inspiring his supporters to hope and fight for something better, and something that they deserve.

— Butwhoamitosay From

A political philanderer, seeking not a body femme, but the body politic, had made union with a number of offices in his career. Seemingly settled in a mayoral matrimony, he succeeded in renewing his vows, claiming a life of monogamous ambition. The city he lived and loved share a home with the state capital, and the tempting office of the governor. The president of the land, seeking to keep that office in hand, suggested the mayor woo it, so the party wouldn’t lose it. The philander thought and in his conscious he fought. Of his lusts and ambitions, he could not be a denier, but to take such an offer would make him a liar. "Were not that bigamy was a political crime, or at least that I was in Utah, where I could wed both at the same time"

— The Fabulist From

Reform nonprofits

Neal McNamara’s piece “Millions and billions” that appeared in your Nov. 25 edition illustrates the basic fallacy of nonprofit corporations. Delta Dental, Blue Cross and many other companies hide large payrolls behind their “not for profit” tax status.

I think it’s well past the time to reform corporate governance. If you’re a corporation that doesn’t receive any tax break or bailouts and pays its faire share of taxes, we shouldn’t care what you pay your employees (shareholders should have a better say than they do, but that is a different subject). If, however, the government bails you out, gives you tax breaks not afforded other companies in your industry or declares your “excessive revenue” not to be a profit, we should be able to cap the salaries of your officers. This isn’t a new idea, I first heard it proposed by the columnist George Will on the March 30, 2008 edition of “This Week With George Stephanopoulos.” The proposed top annual salary varies from Will’s government scale 15 (currently about $124,000) to John McCain’s “highest paid federal official” (currently about $400,000 for the president). I think it’s an idea whose time has come.

— H.F. Brainard Ionia

More on Houghton

“The Lansing State Journal … has called on (Houghton) to resign. We’re not quite there; Bernero still needs her vote to keep moving the city forward, but we’re very wary of her.”

This is one the most despicable comments I have read in the Pulse. I consider your paper to be responsible and imbued with integrity, and this is the reason you give to not call on her to resign? The mayor needs her vote? That’s it? Why then complain about Houghton’s lack of integrity and candor? Why opine about the city attorney’s peculiar and wrong interpretation of the City Charter? Will you be supportive of anyone, no matter how unworthy or disreputable, who comes down the pike as long as they will vote in lockstep with the mayor’s demands? I live in East Lansing, not Lansing. What happens in Lansing, though, affects all of us. I would like Lansing to have a clean, open, accountable government. Instead, we are all made to suffer. The LSJ did the right thing. I would have bet anything that the Pulse would do so, too.

— Torrance From