Anthony Pignataro's story on El Toro's potentially ambiguous Central Park initiative illustrates nicely that the airport backers can't have it both ways. First they say that vast new taxes will be needed to finance the park. Then they say that the initiative allows economic development of at least some of it. I see a let-out clause allowing some of this valuable land to be developed by the highest bidder as a strength, not a weakness of the initiative. If grant funding and other land-rent sources for the park prove to be inadequate, such a clause would act as a safety valve, allowing the remaining land to be developed over time as a park on a fully self-sustaining basis. And the taxes would stay in my pocket, where they belong. It's a good initiative, and it should be put to the vote.

Simon Turner
Foothill Ranch


I read with interest your article about Dr. G. Steven Kooshian, who is accused of administering worthless injections to his patients and billing them (and presumably their insurance companies and Medicare/Medicaid) for the drugs and his services (R. Scott Moxley's "Say, 'Ah,'" Aug. 10). It is unfortunate that at this stage, much of the attention has been focused on Virgil Opinion's credibility and motivation for going public and Kooshian's claim that Opinion is blackmailing him. Although the allegations made in the article have yet to be proved publicly, if one steps back for a moment and contemplates the legal risk Opinion is taking by speaking out, it is hard to imagine what monetary gain he could possibly hope to achieve that would outweigh such a risk. On its face, this truly does appear to be a case of someone speaking the truth in order to clear his conscience.

Edward Pope
Laguna Beach


It was expected that Dr. G. Steven Kooshian's supporters would come forward with positive comments regarding their friend and physician (Letters, Aug. 10). As a former patient of the doctor's [who has now brought a suit against Kooshian], what disturbed me most about their comments were the one-sided testimonials regarding everything Kooshian has done for the gay and HIV/AIDS community. These testimonials failed to earmark the following items:

1) Virgil Opinion was merely an employee under the direction of Kooshian. As in most cases, if an employee is asked/ordered to perform a certain function or service by his superior, then he/she is obliged to do so or face insubordination and/or termination. As a front-line employee, one has only two choices when it comes to the performance of irregular business practices: quit or stay. It is unthinkable to ponder what Opinion must have endured being placed in that position.

2) OC Weekly's R. Scott Moxley reported the facts as they unraveled. As a responsible journalist, he attempted to gather facts and comments from all angles. Including Kooshian's. But the doctor's legal counsel, Eric E. Davis, advised him not to comment. However, this did not prevent Kooshian from making a damaging comment regarding his office practices in the Sept. 9 Orange County Register: "Kooshian denied ever injecting saline solutions, saying he gave his patients beneficial solutions of multivitamins only when he couldn't procure the drugs."

3) No one is questioning that Kooshian has financially supported the gay and HIV/AIDS community. The fact that he makes personal nonprofit contributions is not an issue. His "extensive" charity work should not cloud his "work ethics"; these are two separate issues.

As a supporter of the gay and HIV/AIDS community, I have a responsibility to address the issues. What happened to me should never have taken place. I am thankful that I was not harmed to the extent that I would be unable to write this letter. Unfortunately, the allegations against Kooshian are on par with being raped; a violation of a different nature. I would have understood if Kooshian did not have the facilities or personnel to implement the treatments or have the product available at the time of my appointments, but such circumstances cannot justify injecting me with salt water when I believed I was receiving critical treatment.

I have no doubt that Kooshian will have his day in court. Perhaps without making excuses, he will actually have something meaningful to say.

Bryan K. Noble
Long Beach


For starters, I like Rebecca Schoenkopf's stuff: clever, cynical and mostly humorous. One question though, re: her comment "aren't those good stats" about the nirvana-experiencing medical data coming out of Cuba ("It Wasn't the Cheese!" Aug. 3). My bet: $1 million that Commie Girl will never move to Cuba. Don't you and your utopian friends ever get it? You hate America, and you love the socialist paradises, yet . . . YOU WILL LIVE & DIE ON AMERICAN SOIL! How conveeeenient! But I still like your column.

Richard Bacon
via e-mail

Rebecca Schoenkopf responds: Richard, I have never, ever once hated America. It's typical Limbaugh logic to accuse of America-hating everyone who doesn't agree with party-line politics. But thanks for liking my column.


Re: Alison M. Rosen's article about restroom graffiti ("For a Good Time, Call," Aug. 3). Did she know that Benjie's Cafe in Santa Ana keeps a pad of paper on the wall above the toilet in the men's room for the convenience of its customers who write graffiti? Unfortunately, it is behind the toilet, so one cannot write while sitting down. But it's a nice gesture on the part of the management.

Jeff Foster
via e-mail
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