Email letter, Jan. 6, 2012

Make local economy an ‘energy beets economy’

Mark my words: A decade of stagflation is coming upon the United States that will make the Nixon era look like a picnic. This is because of our $15 trillion national debt and the $1 trillion per year federal deficits that will be financed by central bank monetizing of the U.S. dollar. Hard currency is like water, it always seeks its own level.

In a decade of stagflation, there is a strategy for the Western Slope counties to pursue that will create sustainable economic security and public and private revenues: Produce food, fuel and feed for local consumption and export to urban centers.

Before Hawaii became a state, sugar beets, as a cash crop, thrived in western Colorado . Today sugar beets have evolved into “energy beets” as a feedstock for biofuels such as iso-butanol and high octane gasoline. In the last three Formula One races this season, Ferrari Formula One race cars burned gasoline refined from sugar beets.

To begin the process of reinventing the Western Slope sugar beet industry into an “energy beets economy” there needs to be a local political leader who has vision and the faith of an entrepreneur. A leader who has the true grit to bring together the county commissioners of Delta, Mesa, Garfield, Gunnison and Montrose Counties into an economic development powerhouse dedicated to creating in all five counties an “energy beets economy”.

This is an election year. Perhaps there will be a candidate who will run for county commissioner in Mesa, Delta or Montrose who has the courage and wisdom to organize western Colorado into an “energy beets economy”.


Marijuana is the gateway drug

If there was ever a clear and concise statement as to why marijuana should never be legalized, it is the utterly incoherent and asinine comments of Stan White.

How fanciful his thinking that Colorado may be the first state to legalize what is clearly known by law enforcement agencies to be the gateway drug, and calls for its residents to end the ignorance.

If that isn’t the pot (pun intended) calling the kettle black? Nothing qualifies.
Grand Junction

Union works for the teachers

While MVEA greatly appreciates all that has been done on The Daily Sentinel’s part to support the students and staff of District 51, we take exception to a comment stated in the Sentinel’s editorial on Dec. 21.

The editorial stated, “Why, after all, should taxpayers foot the bill for union leaders who understandably push for more money for their members, but may very likely add to the costs for those same taxpayers in the process?”

We would like to assist in the understanding that, while typical unions push for more money for their members, teachers associations work hard for their working conditions because their working conditions directly affect student learning. If you were to ask your experienced school board members of our budgeting process and the collaboration that takes place between the board and MVEA, they would tell you that our discussions are centrally focused on the students.

District 51 staff, across the board, have taken cuts in pay over the past 3 years in order to ensure quality instruction for the students. Please keep in mind that District 51 staff only get paid for the days they work and when days are taken off the school calendar, that constitutes a cut in pay. We do not get paid over the summer or over breaks during the school year, the money that we are paid is money that is earned only for days worked on the school calendar and is spread out over 12 months.

We look forward to reading The Daily Sentinel and will be happy to contribute in any way to assist our community to understand the plight of public education from a teacher’s perspective.

JIM SMYTH, President
Grand Junction

Sentinel should pay more attention to grammar

I am a citizen, whose second language is English. I am always amazed at the natives’ propensity to be ungrammatical, to misuse apostrophes and to torture the English language in other ways. The Daily Sentinel did violence twice to grammar in the Jan. 6 editorial page .

In the editorial, it stated “Here’s a few issues where there are definite choices.” “Here’s” is a short form of “here is,” and since the editorial was referring to a few choices, it should have said “here are.” Just because “here’s” is constantly misused in spoken language, does not make it more acceptable in written form.

On the same page, Josh Penry writes that the Europeans are “prone to look down their noses at we (emphasis mine) Americans,”, not at us Americans. Why don’t the editors catch such mistakes before the paper is printed? If the editors are disinclined to correct Mr. Penry’s grammar, at least put a [sic] behind “we,” so readers will know the error was not yours.

I have also noticed frequent sloppiness by your paper. The latest example was an article by Kathleen Parker about U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio. The article was headed “Florida Gov. Marco Rubio ...”. Mr. Rubio has never been a governor of Florida or any other state.

It would be nice if the Sentinel would pay more attention to detail, and not contribute to the woeful enough state of English usage.

Grand Junction


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