Letters to the Editor

Who is really undermining democracy in America?

The following Sunday Forum is in response to “Forget Russia, it’s Democrats undermining American democracy” (Aug. 4).

‘Triple bogey’

Special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe is still incomplete but has already obtained multiple indictments and guilty pleas, with probably more to come.

In addition, bipartisan committees and the entire intelligence community have concluded that Russia has been and still remains the dominant threat to our democracy.

In spite of this, J. Peder Zane perversely concludes that it’s the Democrats who pose the greatest threat.

If Zane really feels that this unprecedented attack on our democracy is “par for the course,” he is playing on a different course than most of the American people. To most of us, it looks more like a triple bogey.

Stephen R. Kandall, MD



Just when I though that J. Peder Zane couldn’t get any less truthful, he does. His most recent column is pure manufactured propaganda.

It ignores the entire intelligence community’s warnings – as well as those of some Republican congressmen – that collusion is real, and that Donald Trump may be personally involved.

It ignores the fact that special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation is not yet ready to prosecute everyone involved, due to the sheer volume of evidence that it is sifting.

Mueller is quiet, of course, to protect the integrity of the investigation from Republicans who want to discredit and undermine it. When he finally drops the hammer, there will be plenty of real evidence. In the meantime, the blue tsunami is approaching, and it will wash away a whole lot of cowardly Republicans who refuse to speak out in defense of democracy.

Alan B. Cormack


‘Gravy train’

I am very thankful J. Peder Zane was able to consolidate two weeks of Fox News in his column, but I am also glad I watched it on TV so I could compare notes.

He takes the stance that we could be doing so much better is it weren’t for those pesky Democrats. The real story is that neither party’s representatives, Democrat or Republican, care about anything but their ability to stay on the gravy train we have let them create.

Excellent health care, generous pay, a superior retirement package regardless of how they perform and the opportunity to become millionaires. How many of us have that in our jobs?

I’d like everyone to try and identify something that was done recently by our illustrious president, senators and congressmen that improved our lives. Also, try to identify a recent war was that was necessary to protect us (certainly no progress in 17 years in Afghanistan). I am sure there are one or two that are sincere but they are woefully in short supply.

Charles Schroeder


‘Never mind’

I found J. Peder Zane’s most recent column filled with misleading statements and obfuscations.

To wit: The standard for FISA Court is incredibly strict. The FISA warrants for Carter Page were approved four times by four Republican-appointed judges. The original FISA warrant was not based on Christopher Steele’s dossier, but on a meeting between Page and a foreign diplomat. (The dossier was actually originally commissioned by Republicans and took place after the original FISA warrant.)

I could go on, but why bother; we live in a time where facts no longer matter.

Regarding the almost laughable statement that Democrats are undermining American Democracy – Never mind that the current administration undermines our National Security Agencies; never mind that Trump attacks our allies while cozying up to the world’s worst autocrats; never mind that he uses our differences as a tool to instigate hate and racism.

“Democrats undermining democracy?” You cannot make this stuff up.

Chuck Smith



I read J. Peder Zane’s column regularly and am often amused (and appalled) at how he cherry-picks facts and falsehoods to prove his viewpoint.

The Steele dossier has not yet been proven wrong. For example, Michael Cohen denies going to Prague as the dossier asserts, but Rudy Giuliani now assures us that Cohen is a pathological liar. Until this is proven one way or the other, the jury is still out on the accuracy of the dossier.

Zane dismisses it as a “Clinton attack ad.” He condemns the FBI and DOJ for “trusting Clinton’s henchmen” by using the dossier to obtain a FISA warrant. In fact, the DOJ cited additional reasons.

Zane avoids mentioning George Papadoploulos’ role in the FISA warrant, but this man’s comments to an Australian diplomat about Russian “dirt” on Clinton played a big role in the court’s decision. In another context, Zane calls Papadoploulos a “low-level volunteer.” How many times have we heard that or some similarly flippant dismissal of others in the Russia mix – Cohen, Carter Page, Michael Flynn, Paul Manafort, Rick Gates and Roger Stone?

Zane ends with a disheartening comment, citing our “long national nightmare” caused by Democrats “abusing power.” It is, indeed, a long nightmare. Trump cozies up to Russia, hides evidence that he borrowed money from Russians, brags to top Russian officials in the Oval Office about firing James Comey, denies Russian tampering in our elections, compliments Putin on his rigged election victory and limits implementation of congressional sanctions against Russia.

Until we know which side this man is on, the nightmare will continue.

John May

Chapel Hill