Niners show they have what it takes 

A lot of 49ers fans witnessed a moment of miracle Saturday as the last 97 seconds sealed a victory against the New Orleans Saints. I know that up until that game, many San Franciscans did not believe the 49ers could go all the way. But the stoic performance they put up should have proven a point.

Alex Smith has heard a lot of criticism hurled at him, but he carried on and has become an invaluable asset to the 49ers. He is a true leader who might well become a legend like Joe Montana. The concerted efforts of everyone in the Niners colors on Saturday enabled them to beat the favored team. Now let us keep believing the 49ers will win the Super Bowl.

John Tanwani, Antioch

Pension numbers off base

Facts contradict The San Francisco Examiner’s Jan. 11-12 stories about The City’s pension fund. Neither story reported that the pension system earned a 12.55 percent return ($1.65 billion) in fiscal year 2009–10 plus another 21.85 percent ($2.3 billion) in 2010–11, according to the annual reports. Those earnings pushed the fund’s valuation to $15.4 billion.

Both stories presented myths that the fund might only earn 7.5 percent, ignoring November’s Proposition C that told voters the projected earnings were 7.75 percent. It was also ignored that seven months into the current fiscal year, the fund is projected to earn a double-digit return for the third straight year.

That mythical $60 million to $80 million reported increase in City Hall funding is designed to justify eliminating services or outsourcing them to public-private partnerships, ignoring the pension fund’s healthy returns.

Patrick Monette-Shaw, San Francisco

Niners news invaluable

Thanks to The SF Examiner sports staff for their excellent “Road to Super Bowl XLVI” section Friday. I particularly appreciated the on-the-field offense and defense player layouts because I was not fully familiar with all the Saints players, nor even all the 49ers. I frequently referred to the layouts as I watched the 49ers’ memorable victory.

John M. Kelly, San Francisco

Newt or no one

I do not understand the press or trust their so-called “polls.” Why would the Republicans nominate an awkward shill into the presidency rather than the only candidate who has balanced a federal budget in our lifetime?

If the GOP refuses to nominate its best man, Newt Gingrich, then I will not be voting this November for the first time since 1972. I believe a number of people will also not vote, or they will run to some third party on the ballot, which will divide the vote and re-elect President Barack Obama.

Janet Campbell, San Francisco

Remove illegal billboards

In 2002, the residents of this city passed Proposition G, voting by 79 percent to stop any more billboards being put up. The Planning Department has failed to make this a priority. Officials stated they would hire someone just to keep track of the illegal billboards, yet thosecontinue to be put up.

At that time, then-Supervisor Jake McGoldrick wanted a hearing on this problem. I see illegal billboards being put up all around this city. Anybody riding around The City could easily see this problem. No attempt has been made to stop this. Posting on city poles should also be stopped. It should have happened long ago.

C. Castillo, San Francisco

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