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Your Views: McCain, Palin are more qualified than Obama
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Letters may be sent to; sent by fax to 770-532-0457; or mailed to The Times, P.O. Box 838, Gainesville, GA 30503. Please include full name, hometown and phone number. Letters must be confirmed before being considered for publication. They should be limited to one topic on issues of public interest and may be edited for content, grammar, spelling and length. Letters written by or forwarded from other sources and those involving personal matters, business disputes, expressions of faith or memorial tributes may be rejected. You may be limited to one letter every two weeks. Letters and articles submitted may be published in print, electronic or other forms. Letters, columns and cartoons express the opinions of the authors and not The Times.

There have been some letters to The Times critical of Sarah Palin as not having enough experience to be vice president, even though she has been a mayor, governor and small-business operator, among other accomplishments. She has routed out corruption as both mayor and governor. As governor she has an 80 percent approval rating. She is knowledgeable, a fast learner and a competent leader.

Now let's take a look at Sen. Barack Obama and keep in mind, he wants to be president. Obama has never held an office in which his word is final; he has never been a mayor, governor, small-business operator, military officer or served in the military. The time that he has served in the Illinois state Senate and U.S. Senate has been without any significant accomplishments. Obama will not release any of his records from his time in college or in the state senate.

In view of this we must look closely at his friends and associates. He is close friend and associate of William Ayers, a founder of the terrorist group Weather Underground who bombed the U.S. Capitol, the Pentagon, New York Police Station and various other places.

His 20-year association with pastor Jeremiah Wright who spews anti-American venom from the pulpit. His association with the organization ACORN, which has been cited for voter fraud.

His close relationship with Tony Rezko, who was convicted in court of fraud and other corrupt dealings. He and Obama have been involved in some shady land deals. And the list goes on and on.

Obama has obtained rock star status with his ability to forcefully deliver a speech. He is not the man he portrays himself to be. He is a tax-and-spend socialist, and if elected we can expect the American way of life to change for the worse.

This election is crucial and America does not need a political rock star for president. We need a solid, tried and true patriot with the knowledge to lead this nation forward. That man is John McCain.

Harry Schofield

Mayors' motorcade to benefit state hospitals
In the state of Georgia, several thousand citizens live in Georgia's seven regional behavioral health hospitals. Many of these residents have lived in these hospitals most of their lives and have little, if any, contact with or support from friends or family.

In 1958, the Georgia Municipal Association and then-Gov. Ernest Vandiver created the Mayors' Christmas Motorcade to help these hospital patients celebrate Christmas by providing each with a present. The staff at the regional hospitals tell us that without the Mayors' Christmas Motorcade, many patients would go without any type of gift or recognition during the holidays.

Our city has started its gift collection campaign and we are asking for your help. The hospital clients are part of our community, drawn from a region, and we would like to encourage all of you to remember them this holiday season. If you, your school, church, business or civic group would like to participate in an outstanding holiday community project, please contact Carol LaMonica at the Gainesville-Hall County Community Service Center, phone number 770-503-3330 for further information on how you can get involved.

Most needed items for these residents are personal care items, sleepwear and bathrobes, comfortable clothing, bedroom shoes, sweatshirts or pants, hair items, board games, baseball caps, stationary, pens and pencils, tote bags, watches, top 40 CDs, movies (PG or G only) and hats and gloves.

Unwrapped gifts, wrapping paper and wrapping supplies can be dropped off at any of the following locations by Dec. 8: Community Service Center, 430 Prior Street S.E.; Fire Station 1, 118 Jesse Jewell Parkway; Fire Station 2, 310 Piedmont Road; Fire Station 3, 3335 Nancy Creek Road; Fire Station 4, 2163 Memorial Park Road.

If you prefer to make a monetary contribution please make your check payable to the Gainesville-Hall County Community Service Center (CSC) and mail by Dec. 8 to: Community Service Center, 430 Prior St. S.E., Gainesville GA 30501.

Let's not forget those less fortunate during the holiday season.

Jill Young
City Manager's Office, Gainesville

We can't let socialism get a grip on our nation
This election season, the Democrats have been unusually open about their socialistic leanings. For example, Barack Obama famously told "Joe the Plumber" that "redistributing the wealth" was what Obama and the rest of the Democrats have in mind.

Obama did not mention that before anything can be "redistributed," it must first be added to the government.

This happened recently with home mortgages. The bailout package put the home mortgage industry officially under the control of the federal government. Later, we heard that the national government is considering taking an equity position (meaning part ownership) in banks, whether the banks like it or not.

Then, we heard suggestions about the government buying equity positions in auto manufacturers.
There's more. Democrats in Congress are right now considering how to remove your 401(k) plan from your portfolio and place it in the government's Social Security Administration.

What the Democrats are pushing, right before our eyes, is the nationalization of America's free economy.

There is a name for this kind of creeping governmental (national) ownership and control of the productive assets and industries of a nation. It is called national socialism.

Voters who are young enough to have missed World War II might not feel the same chill that I do when I hear that term, "national socialism." It has a well-known history.

National socialism has dictatorship as its goal. For example, it tells its subjects what they can say, and what they cannot say. This used to be called "thought control." Nowadays, it is called "politically correct."

National socialism fears free speech. It always shuts down all opposing forums for debate, discussion or news. National socialism fears its subjects. Therefore, it forbids private ownership of firearms.

National socialism detests religion, especially Biblical religions. National socialism insists upon Darwinian evolution as the foundation for its philosophy, against all other thinking. National socialism forbids teaching anything but Darwinian evolution to its young subjects. On and on. National socialism has a long list of unsavory characteristics.

National socialism is an evil thing. Do not let it happen here.

W.T. "Ted" Hinds