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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Pass/Fail

    INCOMPLETE:Lute ought to tell the truth

    News of Lute Olson’s imminent return to the UA men’s basketball program dominated headlines in Tucson this week, after the local demigod announced via press release his intention to serve as head coach until the end of his contract in 2011. We’ll all be happy to see Lute come back, but the public deserves an explanation about his unexpected absence – especially since

    Olson originally claimed the absence was not due to “”a health scare but rather a personal matter,”” but turned around this week and said it was a “”medical condition that was not life-threatening, but serious enough to require time away.”” As one of the highest-paid state employees in Arizona – one who has been drawing his full salary for months while on leave – Olson ought to tell the public the truth. Until then, Lute’s leave gets an Incomplete.

    FAIL:The president’s pitiful performance

    There have been plenty of embarrassing moments caught on tape during George W. Bush’s presidency, from the leader of the free world wearing a goofy wizard costume, to performing a funky African dance on the White House lawn. But a video posted to YouTube this week may take the cake for stupidest – and most sickening – moment of all. The shaky, surreptitiously recorded video shows the president’s off-the-record (and off-key) performance at the Gridiron Club’s annual dinner in Washington, DC, an event that brings together elite journalists and policymakers and usually includes remarks delivered by the president. This year, those remarks were delivered as part of a song and dance number referencing some of the biggest disasters of the Bush presidency. Lyrics touch on the incompetent

    Harriet Miers and Michael Brown, described as “”Harriet and Brownie,”” the prosecution for perjury (and eventual presidential commutation) of Scooter Libby, now “”finally free of the prosecutor,”” the president’s cozy relationship with the “”oil-rich Saudi”” family and Vice President Dick Cheney’s unprecedented refusal to release scores of “”documents he’s been withholding.”” The media beau monde may have laughed at the bad jokes, but there’s nothing funny about the tragic Bush administration. President Bush’s musical theatre debut gets a big Fail. ÿ ÿ ÿ

    PASS: Napolitano vetoes UA budget cuts

    Tuesday, Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano vetoed state legislation that would have halted $25 million in funding for Arizona’s public universities, as part of a larger plan to staunch the state’s growing deficit. Although Arizona needs to address its fiscal shortfall as soon as possible, Napolitano made a good move. Higher education should be the last area to suffer a cut as part of any budget band-aid. Further, the proposed bill was less an attempt at a budget solution than a piecemeal partisan squabble over a slew of different potential budget cuts. For preventing possible short-term fiscal challenges, J-Nap’s latest veto deserves a Pass.ÿ ÿ

    FAIL:Red-light cameras don’t stop accidents

    Automated traffic monitoring cameras, like those placed at several intersections notorious for red-light runners around Tucson, are often hailed as a technological innovation to improve safety and fairly ticket traffic offenders. But according to a new study in the Florida Health Review, red-light robocops are actually a hazard. The study, conducted by researchers at the University of South Florida, concluded that red-light cameras “”increase crashes and injuries as drivers attempt to abruptly stop at camera intersections.”” Worse, other studies suggest that they give city bureaucrats a perverse incentive to shorten yellow-light times in order to give more tickets and make more money. As the study suggests, red-light cameras are nothing more than “”a hidden tax levied on motorists”” that do little to improve public safety. That deserves a Fail.

    OPINIONS BOARD: Editorials are determined by the Wildcat opinions board and written by one of its members. They are Sarah Devlin, Allison Hornick, Christina Jelly, Melissa Krueger, Evan Lisull and Connor Mendenhall.

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