Namesake ParkEditor: Why not call it simply...

THE BALTIMORE SUN

Namesake Park

Editor: Why not call it simply "Baltimore Stadium"? There will never be any doubt where the stadium is located, regardless of the names of teams which play there, now or in the future.

Memorial Stadium will always be on 33rd Street. There may even be people who are not aware of our "charm." There is something to be said for directness and simplicity.

Carroll K. Arconti.

Cockeysville.

Spending 'Cuts'

Editor: By now I am sure you are aware that despite Congress' promises to use the new tax revenue to reduce the federal deficit, it did the exact opposite.

That's right, the Congress enacted the second-largest tax increase ever and rather than reduce the deficit it increased spending $111 billion -- and that doesn't include the gulf war costs -- and pushed the fiscal 1991 deficit to an all-time record $320 billion.

But if you're saying to yourself, "I remember hearing congressional leaders promise that the new budget would mean a $500-billion spending reduction in the years ahead. How can they say that?"

Only in Congress can you promise a $500-billion savings at the same time you increase actual spending by $111 billion. Here's how it works:

When the Congress talks about spending cuts, it is not talking about cutting actual spending, but reducing projected increases. If the Congress just reduces the amount of increased spending, its members call that a spending cut, even though actual spending is still increasing.

Confused? Let me give you a simplified example. Let's suppose the Congress is spending $1 on a program and it has budgeted to spend $2 on the same program next year. However, if the government spends $1.75 next year congressional leaders will call that a spending cut of $0.25 -- even though they actually increased spending by $0.75.

When the Congress promised to save $500 billion in the years ahead, this was not an actual cut of $500 billion, it was a reduction in the pie-in-the-sky budget for the future. Even with the supposed $500 billion cut, actual spending will still skyrocket.

The promise of deficit reduction was nothing more than a myth. The Congress just wanted more taxes for more spending. And its leaders would promise anything just to get more of our income.

Congress is bankrupting America. Because of non-stop deficit spending, the interest payments on the national debt exceed a whopping $256 billion annually. These interest payments on the ballooning national debt are already more than all the individual income taxes paid by everyone who lives west of the Mississippi River.

We are rapidly approaching the day when we won't be able to make the interest payment on our debt. I'm sure you understand what happens if you can't make the interest payments on your debts.

Fred H. Romer.

Edgewater.

Reckless

Editor: "The saving of lives" is not the real reason Gov. William Donald Schaefer vetoed the 65-mph speed limit as I see it. Almost everyone now drives 65 miles per hour or faster, yet we only see a few radar traps and a few useless unmarked cars. They're useless because they deter nothing. They only succeed at raking in a few extra dollars for the state. If the legal speed limit was 65, there would be no need for radar or the use of unmarked cars which would save money in itself.

If we are going to drive the speed of the sixties, why not also pay the taxes of the sixties? Why build high speed highways with our tax money and drive only 55? The rate of speed one drives does not save or take lives, as many statistics have pointed out to us in the past. Reckless driving at any speed is the real culprit. If he was concerned with saving lives, Governor Schaefer would set up guidelines for determining reckless driving and let progress take its course with better highways, more efficient cars and faster speeds.

Ernest W. Gotinsky.

Baltimore.

Judging Doctors

Editor: I shudder, along with Dr. John Josselson (letter, June 5), to think of how physicians would be judged by a group of non-physicians. A method of judgment guided by doctors is in place, however, and if we would adhere to it, we could solve some of our problems.

A great number of "specialists" advertise their particular ability in the yellow pages. Many of these doctors make honest claims, but some do not. In 1988, I made a review of the Baltimore metropolitan area and found that evidence of certification could not be found for 32.6 percent of the doctors who claimed that highly desirable status.

The Maryland Practice Act states that a physician may not represent to the public that he/she is a specialist unless so certified by the Board of Physician Quality Assurance. Two years after this board was created, a second review disclosed that 27.7 percent were not certified. A significant change had not occurred.

Legal counsel for Med-Chi clearly states that a difference does not exist between a physician who has been properly certified by examinations of the American boards and one who has "fulfilled the requirements to attain eligibility to take the examinations." Many in the latter group may have failed the examinations one or more times. The American boards do not recognize the state of continuous board eligibility.

This decision in the Code of Maryland Regulations is directly at odds with the thoughts of the specialty boards and the promotion of quality assurance. The reason for the existence of two classes of specialists in Maryland is not clear.

One of the simpler ways to upgrade medical practice is to recognize that certified physicians examining doctors through the medium of the American boards is an eminently fair way to achieve specialist recognition. Perhaps correction of this one factor would reduce the number of malpractice suits.

In the ideal situation, the physician would do what he has been found capable of doing. The public could then ask but for little more from its doctors.

Joseph M. Miller, M.D.

Timonium.

Western Revival

Editor: Gov. William Donald Schaefer and Delegate Casper Taylor deserve praise and credit for their vision in helping to develop Western Maryland's economy in Allegany and Garrett County.

The governor is beginning to learn that by working with the entire body politic, including the work force, business community and the environmentally conscious, a truly stunning picture can emerge. That picture is sustainable growth.

It is growth which recycles rather than uses up local resources, and plans for the long term. It avoids an economic boom and then a pollution bust, as has happened elsewhere, leading ultimately to a business bust and a devastating toll on our health and quality of life.

Thanks in part to the governor's support, U.S. Air is now providing commuter service connecting Cumberland to its Pittsburgh international hub. In August, the interstate link to this area opens, making Allegany and Garrett counties once again the gateway to the West.

The interstate has been located so as to preserve rather than destroy Green Ridge State Forest, where many Baltimoreans camp, hike and hunt deer. This alignment also services Rocky Gap State Park.

In that park's present state (as many of us sincerely hope it will remain), it hosts droves of Baltimoreans and other Marylanders on camping, hiking and swimming excursions. It also contains a marvelous wildland refuge and is home to the gala annual bluegrass festival.

The governor and the Department of Natural Resources are beginning to realize that the local economy can benefit more by utilizing public lands for recreation and tourism dollars than for commercial logging dollars. The logging industry can thrive with enlightened management practices on extensive private holdings. Our public lands are beginning to be used for species preservation and bio-diversity as well.

Finally, the governor is realizing that the work force in Allegany and Garrett counties is second to none, which should attract many businesses to the area. Loyalty is high and absenteeism is low, because this is a region that still emphasizes community values.

Our values are the way they are in part because of the preservation of community schools, which maintain a diversity of leadership positions, sports activities and student individual attention. With high tech we are no longer in the boonies; rather we're at the cutting edge.

All who have seen our region and visited with our friendly people will surely want to stay in one of the most crime-free and affordable places to live in the state.

Donald S. Goldbloom.

Cumberland.

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