Three cheers for Walter Willis of Tomball, who wrote the following letter to the editor of the Chron:
Our pathetic status quo
The Chronicle's June 27 Outlook article "Your 15 minutes are up, Mr. Bell," from U.S. Rep. John R. Carter, perfectly exemplified politics in the pathetic status quo. Perhaps it has always been practiced like this and is intrinsic to the human condition. But then, shame on the Chronicle for its complicity.
Carter made no argument, but attempted an ad hominem attack on Chris Bell, spewing conjecture and misinformation. I was saddened by the state of rhetoric practiced by this politician, and saddened even more by the understanding that this represents the standard accepted in the information industry.
Carter began by labeling Bell's actions as breaking a "seven-year ethics truce." This literally means that for seven years politicians have taken a hiatus from ethics! He meant that there have been no ethics complaints lodged in seven years, but this only seems to imply that there has been some sort of tacit agreement to overlook the unethical behavior of the other team. Further, since we had a president investigated from wire-to-wire for ethical issues, it is not exactly a claim with much foundation.
Nowhere does Carter logically address Bell's claims.
Politicians behave this way because they can. The argument can be made that the public is myopic and only gets the leaders it deserves. Even if that's true, it does not absolve the editors of their ethical mandate to fuel the marketplace of ideas with legitimate product.
Walter R. Willis, Tomball