City propaganda

I attended the Tuesday evening meeting about the landfill with interest but was disappointed with the format and material presented. The definition of propaganda is “ideas, facts or allegations spread deliberately to further one’s cause or to damage an opposing cause.” I observed a propaganda poster fair with ideas supporting only one landfill site rather than a balanced discussion of alternative sites and the process by which criteria are evaluated to determine a “best” landfill site for all citizens.

City officials have used proposed increases in solid-waste bills as a scare tactic to support the Old Lorena Road landfill site, yet have failed to consider the cost to the taxpayer of events such as the Tuesday evening poster fair. How many taxpayer dollars were spent on the printing of the dozen or so large, professional banners and the hundreds of glossy brochures for propagating the Old Lorena Road site? How many person hours were spent designing such materials? And more importantly, how much were “experts” paid to attend the event? Kevin Yard, an engineer for SCS, reported that he received compensation to attend the event. How much? And does this represent a financial conflict of interest? Taxpayers deserve to know the answers to such questions. We all might be in a different situation had city officials spent more time on finding alternatives to the Old Lorena Road site rather than on propaganda supporting the Old Lorena Road site with taxpayer dollars.

Kay Smith, Waco

Here we go again

While watching a TV show on Spike, they announced they will be changing the channel to Paramount next year. They also showed a preview of a new show called “Waco.” Even before they began showing clips my stomach tightened. Sure enough, the show is about the Branch Davidians. The previews make David Koresh look like some poor misunderstood minister. I could not believe what I was seeing.

I’m so tired of explaining that the Branch Davidian compound is 14 miles from Waco. When asked, I always ask back if they noticed that the compound is on a farm, in the country, with cows — and do they really think we have farms in the middle of town? I have never understood why the mayor, city council, Waco chamber of commerce, anybody did not nip this in the bud when they started saying all this erupted in Waco.

Two weeks ago I heard on a TV show an FBI agent say, “We don’t want another Waco.” Before I retired, people came to our business from out of state and wanted to go see the compound site. We would tell them we had never been there and did not know where it was. They were always surprised. All they heard on the news was that it was in Waco.

We are just now seeing a renewal of our downtown. People are moving here from other towns and other states. I hate to see us go through all of this again.

Janet Smith, Waco