No substance

Unsurprisingly, The Daily Cougar has endorsed Lee Brown for mayor in the upcoming runoff election, as he fits the paper's ideology. More interesting is the lack of substance supporting the endorsement in the staff editorial on Nov. 5.

The editorial emphasizes Brown's community service efforts in the city. Is the Cougar referring to that brief interim in which Brown was neither police chief of New York City nor making friends in the Clinton administration?

Also mentioned is Brown's support for an affirmative action policy that guarantees contracts to minority interests. Despite approval of voters, it will most likely be struck down in federal court, giving the mayor little say in the matter.

The Cougar talks of Brown "saving youth from drugs and strengthening our neighborhoods." Unfortunately, in politics, talk is an easy commodity to come by, and Mosbacher offers much better pro-business, pro-employment and pro-growth alternatives.

Jonathan Matthew Mower

senior, economics

Handy's follies

There were several whopping errors in Jesse Handy's Oct. 28 column about the Houston mayoral race. Let me point out three (!) errors of fact which appeared in this piece.

Mr. Handy claims that "Mosbacher is one of the top honchos at Rice and prior to that, was a cabinet member in the Bush administration." He continues, "Mosbacher's

wife Georgette wrote a book ..."

Firstly, Rob Mosbacher, Jr. has never held a substantive elective or appointive public office. However, his father, Robert Mosbacher Sr., was Secretary of Commerce a few years back. Second, according to the Rice University web page on Nov. 4, nobody named Mosbacher holds any of the positions of president, provost, vice president, or dean of any college, nor do any Mosbachers sit on the Board of Governors.

Finally, Rob Mosbacher's wife's name is Catherine, not Georgette, and Catherine Mosbacher is not the author of the book Mr. Handy described.

By the way, it took me about 15 minutes to confirm this information.

Columnists are, of course, entitled to express opinions, but it would be nice to think these opinions are not based on a complete misunderstanding of the world around them. Incompetence (one certainly hopes that mendacity did not play a role) does not make a good foundation for analysis

Peter Copeland

associate professor, Department of Geosciences

Credit where credit's not due.

Watch out for the freebies that come from filling out credit card applications!

I am curious why the university allows companies to come on campus and hound students to sign up for credit cards. Every time a student signs an application, he or she is giving that company permission to evaluate his or her credit.

A problem arises when the student tries to buy something on credit and the credit report shows numerous inquiries. Many creditors frown on these situations. If a student is approved, the interest rate is most likely through the roof.

In addition, whenever a student fills out this type of information, he or she is usually added to mailing lists that can clog up mailboxes with unwanted garbage.

I would like to see more students go to their banks and try to get credit through them and possibly receive lower interest and fewer hassles.

James Wallace

senior, political science

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