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Mailbag: Newport city officials offended everyone

April 11, 2012

Your April 6 story, "Owners speak out against harbor rent increase," did not really reflect the seething anger in the Newport Beach City Council Chambers over an unbridled attempt to increase the city's revenue.

The reason: The attendees were too gentlemanly and ladylike to express their true views about the mayor, two councilmen and the city manager who lectured the citizens as if they were schoolchildren. The foursome tried to appear to listen while their minds were made up and closed. They likely told themselves that they had done a good job of "outreach."

Wrong. They offended everyone. Such is government at all levels today, boorish and unwilling to listen.

Douglas M. Wood

Newport Beach

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Rohrabacher not a good representative

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Who at the Daily Pilot thought it appropriate to put the "Rohrabacher is a good man" headline for the letter written by William B. Anderson in such a large, bold font? This so closely followed by the March 11 announcement that Jack Wu (Rohrabacher's volunteer campaign treasurer) was our "new conservative columnist." It makes one wonder about the trend of the seeming lack of bias at the Pilot.

Rohrabacher may be a good man, but he is definitely not a good representative. Anyone who pays his wife $73,238 over the past two years makes me doubt the authenticity of this. The rationale, according to his chief of staff Rick Dykema, is that "she has long been involved in local politics, and was his campaign manager since before they were married."

I guess that makes it all right! It's nice that Mr. Anderson is convinced of Rohrabacher's "ethical correctness and the frugality of his expenditures" but having his wife on the payroll lacks judgment, looks bad and stresses the need for new representation.

Carolyn Fitz-Gibbon

Newport Beach

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Paying wife is not right

Thank you, Dana Rohrabacher, for setting the record straight that there is nothing sinister about your wife being paid nearly $200,000 from your campaign funds ("Rep. defends money to wife," March 30). But if everything is so transparent and above board, then why would you need to say, "This is maybe the 20th time I've commented, because every other year, the same thing comes up?"

Sir, you are being asked those questions because there is an appearance of impropriety: nepotism. A much more sinister activity in politics than in, say, a small family-owned business. If, as you say, you have had to defend your actions 20 times over your 22 years in Congress, then you just appear either clueless or uncaring as to what constitutes the public's perception of a sinister activity. You should have learned by now that, as the old adage goes, one's actions need to be honest in appearance as well as in fact.

Bob Rank

Huntington Beach

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