1. Nothing cranks up the ire of folks today like bankers complaining about the unfairness of the world. Which explains the hue and cry that was raised on nymag.com over Gabriel Sherman’s story about just that (“The Wail of the One Percent,” April 27). The posts can be broken down into three groups: Seething With Rage, Merely Disgusted, and Lay Off These Guys, It’s a Free Country. We’ll start with the first category, where the fireworks are: “Hey, AIG guy! While you might have had a great game, your team lost. This is the real world. You shouldn’t get a trophy for being on the losing team. I know, I know, you always got a trophy when you played Little League or soccer. But you are not 12 years old anymore. Stop and grow a pair.” … “The biggest criminals in our country right now are these bankers. If I had my way, we’d shoot all the bankers before we proverbially shoot all the lawyers.” … “As a 100 percent disabled war veteran and Ranger-course graduate, I have to ask: How much bonus money did our service members receive for defending our nation in a war zone while Wall Street destroyed our economic war-fighting capacity during a time of war with their unmitigated greed and avarice? I say declare a national financial-services emergency, put everyone from financial services in uniform under the draft, subject them to the Uniform Code of Military Justice, and pay them the salary that members of the armed forces receive. Let them enjoy an eight-year obligation with stop-loss.” … “Kind of makes you miss the twenties, when the jackasses who ruined the country’s economy had the decency to jump out a window, instead of whining about not being able to afford their summer house.” Okay, category No. 2, less punch but still plenty of bite: “A graduate of a preeminent law school, I spent five years making between $30K and $55K to defend people being tried for their life or death–sentenced clients seeking a new trial. I come from a family of high-school dropouts, so there was no family money to supplement my income. The idea that graduating from a certain institution entitles someone to a certain level of income is repugnant. By the way, I, too, was tethered to my BlackBerry and worked twelve-to-fourteen-hour days. So that argument doesn’t work for me either.” Lastly, but no less passionately, the free-country crowd: “Yeah, all those villainous Wall Street folk are a bunch of cheaters, and the system is unfair, blah, blah, blah. The truth is that the system is open to all who are willing to find their way into it. The wealthy-envy crowd think themselves incapable of making lots of money. It’s a case of small-mindedness, as it always has been and always shall be.” … “No one is in a position to tell anyone else that they make too much. That’s right. Welcome to America.”
2. When it comes to Dolly Parton, whom Jesse Green profiled last week (“Dolly or Bust,” April 27), nobody has anything but the loveliest things to say, like this little anecdote recounted by a reader: “In the eighties, I was director of programming at WCBS-TV, and we had created a weekly series called To Life! with Huell Howser from Nashville. Dolly agreed to an early-morning interview with Huell at her apartment on Fifth Avenue. She had arrived at home at 3 a.m. after an appearance the night before in Atlantic City. When I and the crew arrived at 7 a.m., Dolly greeted us with freshly baked biscuits and coffee. No maid—she’d baked them herself. On the coffee table was her script for 9 to 5, for which she was beginning rehearsals the next day in Hollywood. Is there another like her?”
3. The crossword solution to “It’s the Economy” (April 20) appears here.