economic education. (and her opponents) helped the economy, probably more than by donating the millions to charity. She did not have a bonfire and burn cash. She paid for 'things and "services.' While I know very little about the economics of public relations, those millions had to be spent through advertising companies, public relations firms, printers, mailing houses, television stations and even newspapers. Those entities did not burn cash either. They 'employed' writers, computer operators, secretaries, janitors, and pizza delivery people.. From a free enterprise economic point of view, it is better that the decision about how it was spent was made by Meg Whitman, all the individuals who contributed either to or against her campaign... and all those mentioned above, rather than a government planner."
* ... OUR TRASH: Reader Hillary Bowden weighed in on the city's plan for a major anti-littering campaign. "I remember that recently a 'caring' mom complained about her child's school (Thorner?) requiring the students to clean up the campus after recess and lunch. Her main complaint was that it was 'beneath' her child to pick up garbage. Maybe Ms. Hoover (City Parks and Recreation Director Dianne Hoover) should start with parents like that!! I propose billboard across town: 'Don't be a slob - pick up your crap!' Thanks for the opportunity to gripe."
* ... LOVE STORY: Old friend Dan Giordano reacted to the story on marriage becoming obsolete with this valentine to his wife, Patty: "Forty years ago I was attending college (USC) studying to be a physical therapist. I was making it day by day working three jobs with marriage the furthest thought. One weekend I had nothing to do, no work no study, nothing. So I decided to come home to visit my family and get together with some friends. That weekend I had a chance meeting with a girl named Patty…..a girl I knew from before... but this meeting was somehow different. This meeting, that weekend, I knew from the first moment that this was the girl I wanted to spend the rest of my life with, the girl I wanted to marry. Three months later I asked her to marry me and eight months later January 30 1971 we were married. Looking back I can’t think of a better way to have spent these last forty years. Raising our girls Megan and Jennifer and now enjoying our children’s families. I wouldn’t even change the ups and downs... My final comment on this subject is a wish to those who commit to a life of marriage…..to live that life with love and commitment and, after forty years, to have the same feelings with their spouse I have toward the person I gave my love and commitment. It’s a good feeling."
* ... NANNY STATE: One day we're going to learn you can't legislate good parenting skills. That thought occurred to me when I read a story that the San Francisco Board of Supervisors passed a law that said restaurants cannot put free toys in meals that exceed set thresholds for calories, sugar or fat. As the story said: "Libertarians are livid, parents are peeved and even advocates of healthier fast food think the ban will be counterproductive." The move was seen as a direct shot at McDonald's and its "happy meals."
* ... DONATION: Hats off to PCL Industrial Services which recently donated $10,000 to the Golden Empire Gleaners. In a time of such great need and stress, it's always encouraging to see local companies stepping up to help. PCL is an employee-owned business with a large office in Bakersfield and has long been active in the community.
* ... BAKERSFIELDISM: Thanks to reader Jack Kelly for submitting this one: You know you're a Bakersfield old-timer if "you remember the street car running from Chester Avenue to Baker Street at the railroad tracks."