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Restaurant Noise 

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Restaurant Noise
Ted Scheffler's comments about the noise level in his review of Manoli's ["Holy Manoli," Oct. 22, City Weekly] caused me to shake my head.

What is it with restaurants in Salt Lake City? None of them seem to use sound-absorbing panels in their designs. I know these exist. Is it a cost factor? I'm sure there are several other ways to muffle the sound.
Trish Cronan
Salt Lake City

A Democracy in Name Only
Thanks for your cover story which touched on the local efforts of Utah for Bernie Sanders ["A Strange, 'Berning' Sensation," Oct. 29]. I believe that everyone of any political background has good reason to vote for Bernie.

I recently watched a lecture by Martin Gilens of Princeton University summarizing 10 years of research and analysis. The data set consisted of 2,000 survey questions asked in the 1980s, 1990s and 2000s. Gilens' analysis reveals that that America is now a democracy in name only.

While economic elites and interest groups representing businesses have substantial impact on U.S. policy, average middle-class Americans and mass-based interests groups have little or no influence over which laws are passed.

The formation of Super PACs following the 2010 Citizens United decision by the U.S. Supreme Court strengthened the love affair between Washington, D.C., and Wall Street, further minimizing the voice of the 99 percent.

Thanks to Super PACs, economic elites can pour unlimited funds toward any candidate they support, leaving virtually no choice for any candidate but to form a Super PAC to remain competitive. A successful campaign for the U.S. House now costs an average of $1 million; a Senate run, $10 million; and, in 2012, presidential candidate Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama both spent upward of $1 billion.

In 2012, more than 40 percent of all the money that was raised for federal elections came from just 0.01 percent of Americans. Put 2 and 2 together, and it seems almost like bribery.

Sen. Sanders is set on reversing this corruption. He is one of the few politicians who refuses to play the same old game and cater to Wall Street, or even form a Super PAC. Mind you, 650,000 individual donors have helped Bernie remain competitive in the "money race."

But while donations are critical, this isn't just about money, or even about Sanders. Bernie is our leader, but we cannot sit back. This is our fight, and we must get involved if we want to take back our democracy.
Carly Ferrin
Orem

More About Sanders, Please
Thanks, City Weekly, for your cover story on Sen. Bernie Sanders ["A Strange, 'Berning' Sensation," Oct. 29]. The artwork on the cover was fantastic!

Although you did have a few comments from local organizers Sarah Scott and Dana Clark at the bottom of the article, I wish you had written more on what Bernie Sanders stands for. He is a real presidential candidate who can win. He has lots of good ideas about how to move our country forward. Many of your readers are already supporters of Bernie, but some are still not aware of him.

Please consider having a follow-up cover story, or at least an article that says more about his positions on issues. Sarah Scott and Dana Clark, whom you know from Utah for Bernie Sanders, could help.
Mark Rothacher
Salt Lake City

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