Conservatives were right about the 'domino theory'

Re: "George McGovern: A conservative's appreciation," Oct. 23

I was disappointed in Cal Thomas' column. My most vivid memory of the late Sen. George McGovern in the 1972 campaign was when he said he would go on his hands and knees to Hanoi, Vietnam, to beg for the release of our tortured POWs. Since I agree with Thomas 95 percent of the time, this will have to be filed under the 5 percent.

In Thomas' second paragraph, we are told that the domino theory conservatives believed that if South Vietnam were conquered, "all Asia" would go communist. Excuse me, but I do not recall anybody talking about the entire continent. The claim was that Vietnam's neighboring countries would fall.

And what do you know,Laos and Cambodia fell at about the same time South Vietnam did. Looks like a domino effectto me. The domino effect works in reverse, too. When Poland rejected communism, it wasn't long before the other occupied Eastern European nations began following suit.

Thomas goes on to say that McGovern was "eventually vindicated in many minds about America's involvement in Vietnam." When we finally pulled the plug on Indochina, as many peace advocates had been calling for, massive prison camps -- or so-called re-education centers -- opened up in South Vietnam and Laos. And let's not forget the charnel houseof Pol Pot's Cambodia. Millions of refugees risked their lives, and sometimes lost them, fleeing by land and by sea.

Some vindication.

John Lockwood


Michigan's Prop 2 would hinder economic growth

Re: "Labor tries new tactic after setbacks in Michigan," Oct. 19

Michigan has an elected legislature for a reason: From time to time, elected officials need to change the laws that govern our state. Unfortunately, a small group of government union leaders want to usurp that process with Proposal 2.

Although it's described in only 100 words on November's ballot, Michigan's attorney general confirms that Proposal 2 would undermine, in whole or part, 170 previously enacted state laws, including laws that affect everything from education reform to balancing our city and state budgets. Proposal 2 could eliminate reforms that are projected to save Michigan taxpayers at least $1.6 billion each year.

Michigan has a long history of honoring employees and respecting their rights to collectively bargain. But Proposal 2 takes advantage of our trust in unions. While our neighboring states are passing innovative laws that are attracting jobs and economic growth, Proposal 2 would effectively handcuff Michigan's potential for economic growth far into the future.

F. Vincent Vernuccio

Director of labor policy,

The Mackinac Center for Public Policy

Midland, Mich.

Prop 6 is good for billionaire, not Michiganders

Re: "A bridge to Michigan's back rooms," Oct. 17

Michigan's anti-bridge Proposal 6 should be easy for anyone seriously looking at the issue. The new bridge will provide some relief to the 81-year-old Ambassador Bridge. It will provide a much better route than currently offered by the Ambassador. And to top it off, its construction will not cost Michigan taxpayers.

Yet polls remain very close.

Given that a self-interested billionaire looking to preserve a 30-year-old monopoly is driving the proposal, Michigan's left should be eager to side with Gov. Rick Snyder. However, the residual distaste after two failed recall attempts still lingers in the mouths of those usually foaming for a chance to punish the rich.

Unfortunately, people from the left are not the only ones supporting Prop 6. People like Grover Norquist also support it, arguing that the government should not get in the business of building bridges. Conversely, the government should not be in the business of protecting monopolies.

Jordan H. Conrad