Email letters, Oct. 24, 2011

Water district was right to appeal water rights decision

I wanted to thank the Colorado River Water Conservation District for standing up for what was right and matching the legal funds to appeal a decision that had canceled water rights for energy development. This is an important move for the district because of the potential precedent the decision could have set.

The court’s decision was not based on any type of facts related to the diligence of the water right. As such, the court was in the wrong and the water right for coal and oil shale development should be restored. Again, thanks goes to the district; this is certainly taxpayer money well spent.

MARIAH RANEY
Grand Junction

Coverage of protest is biased

It is apparent that The Daily Sentinel has decided to be the advertising arm for the Occupy Grand Junction protesters. On the front page Oct. 21, an article about cops having to work overtime because of the occupiers included an inset advertising the date and time of their next march, their text number and their website. Can there be any question that the Sentinel is endorsing and encouraging people to protest? What ever happened to unbiased reporting which should be the primary function of any newspaper? I certainly hope Sentinel readers look at the article to see what these occupiers are costing the taxpayers.

L.W. HUNLEY
Grand Junction

OWS protests isn’t just for liberals

It’s so good to see The Daily Sentinel taking an unbiased view of the worldwide Occupy movement. In these times of global economic crises, only the truth will survive when the mud-slinging ends. We depend on journalistic integrity to know which is which. The average man on the street can’t be expected to understand the systemic failures leading up to this crisis — economists can’t even agree on its cause.

Thanks to 21st century technology the science of politics and economics has become so complex that even the experts don’t understand what’s happening. The people can no longer even believe what they read in the paper when the lies, omissions, distortions, and misrepresentations of corporate-owned news media is being exposed on a daily basis by alternative internet media and whistle-blowers within almost every corporate entity. Let’s hope The Daily Sentinel can retain its credibility through this period of social and political unrest.

I’m sure the staff at The Daily Sentinel knows the difference between overgrown corporate news media, that the Occupy Grand Junction protesters are against, and the local/regional news media that the DS represents. The Sentinel could do the entire community a service by pointing that out. The protesters aren’t being funded any more than newspapers are. Certainly not by Soros; as anybody who follows the ideology of INET can tell you. Neither political party is funding them, as hard as they try. Occupiers won’t accept special interest money. OWS and OGJ are what they are: mobs on the street seeking truth from the only sources they can believe in — themselves.

“They” have no specific demands because “they” are a collective with a million individual demands. To be sure, however, when millions and millions of the people get together face-to-face and talk it out, issue-by-issue, without the distorted guidance of a corporate media’s filtration, there will arise a consensus; but it will be based on the majority opinion of the people. That’s how democracy works. There will be a petition to redress grievances when specific grievances become collectively identified and majorities form.

The people tried it in 1776 and again with the tea party. The tea Party was co-opted by a corporate Republican Party, but the folks behind the tea party learned what not to do next time. OWS is the second attempt at re-establishing citizen sovereignty and the Democratic Party corporation is trying desperately to co-opt it for themselves.

It’s up to the former tea party activists to rise again and resist Democratic attempts to usurp OWS, too. There’s really nothing liberal (or conservative) about trying to take our sovereignty away from the corporate banks that are holding our government hostage. Does anybody really believe the absurd notion that TARP was anything less than a ransom demand by a private corporation we laughingly call the Federal Reserve Bank? OWS is not against the government; it’s against the corporations that now control it by controlling its money supply: privately owned banks. By extension that includes the cartel of TBTF military/industrial corporations too, but why muddy the water.

It took an act of Congress to open the fed’s books enough to find that TARP went mostly to bail out European banks and the inflation it caused was billed to the American taxpayer in lost equity. The European Central Bank is still bankrupt and they’re having a panic session this weekend to talk about it some more. Guess who’s going to bail them out again. More inflation. That’s not a light at the end of the tunnel — it’s a Eurotrain. OWS leadership (yes, there is) knows that and Grand Junction’s citizens should know that too; especially business and property owners. The homeless have other issues. Retirees and students have other issues, too. Where the consensus is forming is around the central fact that centralized global corporations are making decisions about our money that we wouldn’t make for ourselves. That’s not democracy. OWS is democracy and everybody should participate or we’ll get more of the same corpocracy that makes elections irrelevant.

The USSR had elections too: you could choose between Commie Candidate A or Commie Candidate B. Isn’t it obvious enough yet? We’re given a choice between Corporate Candidate A and Corporate Candidate B. Thanks to the corporate media and some very clever demographic engineering our votes are roughly equal at every election; funny how it always works out so close. Maybe it’s time to talk to each other and really listen. That’s why OWS is putting on a never-ending block party. What a novel concept: talk to each other, then decide.

I myself want to revoke corporate personhood but I don’t speak for the majority of OWS even though they’re coming to the same conclusion. Join me and we’ll join them. Together we might give state and federal prosecutors the legal tool they need to enforce morality on a corrupt system.

I sincerely hope The Daily Sentinel will facilitate this conversation. Our future depends on it.

WILLIAM H. FALBERG
Grand Junction

Maintaining roadless areas is essential

The U.S. Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals recently upheld the 2001 Roadless Area Conservation Rule, which serves to protect some 50 million acres of federal roadless lands across the United States. Colorado has about 4.2 million of these acres in 363 separate roadless areas.

As hunters and anglers know from “boots-on-the-ground” experience, national forest roadless areas, commonly known as backcountry, provide some of America’s last undisturbed fish and wildlife habitat and the finest publicly accessible hunting and fishing in the country. Too many roads increase big game vulnerability to excessive motorized vehicle disturbance and can result in shorter seasons and fewer available tags for hunters.

High road densities also decrease the quality of streamside habitat, which is detrimental for wild trout and reduces angling opportunities. In Colorado, roadless areas comprise more than 58 percent of native cutthroat trout habitat and more than 50 percent of the public land in the 15 most-hunted game management units (GMUs). And among these fifteen GMUs, twelve of them each contain over 100,000 acres of roadless public land.

In addition, 92 percent of all national forest lands in Colorado already lie within one mile of a road. There are currently over 17,000 miles of roads in our national forests, and the Forest Service has stated they only need 20 percent of the current road system.

In 2005, 100 biologists and game managers with the Colorado Division of Wildlife (DOW) examined wildlife values in the more than 300 roadless areas in national forests across the state. Unanimously, they opposed road building in every area. As hunters and anglers (and their DOW brethren) know from firsthand experience, roadless areas in Colorado are invaluable, and without affording them lasting protections our sporting heritage will struggle to survive. We’re glad U.S. Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals agrees.

DAVID LIEN
Colorado Springs

Unions have outlived their usefulness

Each year around election time, politicians focus on pet issues, urging our acceptance and “Yes” votes or else bad things will happen. Speeches usually contain predictions of doom and gloom, like impending dirty air, water, rising crime rates, teacher lay offs and school cuts ...yada, yada, yada. The same scare tactics that have worked for decades. This time it’s unions.

For example, the president’s jobs bill includes lots of favors for them. He warns us if his bill isn’t passed soon, we should expect all that dirty stuff, the air, the water, plus fewer police and fire jobs, etc. All very scary.

Once upon a time we needed unions. They served a purpose. They were good. But then, once upon a time, other good things we used went away: gas street lights and crank wall phones come to mind. The point is, there’s a time and place for everything and when you hurt rather than help, it’s time to go. I believe the public service and teachers unions fall in this category. We can’t afford what they’re charging any more.

I wonder why government can’t identify and target other items in this giant budget to cut besides those scary ones? For starters, how about government hand out checks to welfare moochers?

AL CARLEY
Grand Junction

Colorado should promote energy development opportunities

I wish Colorado were a lot more like Utah in terms of energy development. Just last week Utah’s lieutenant governor said, “Utah is open for the energy business.” Why aren’t our elected officials backing up energy development like our western neighbor?

It seems like Colorado is doing everything in its power to kill off every energy source that has kept western counties a float for more than a century. First they implemented HB 1365 that hurt coal, then these mountain counties started trying to stop energy development in their boundaries and outside their jurisdictions, then came the attacks on oil shale, what next? It’s just unfair if you ask me.

We have some of the largest gas fields in the nation. We have some of the best-quality coal reserves. We have untapped nuclear potential. We have an oil shale resource that is exponentially bigger than Saudi Arabia’s oil reserves. But are we promoting this development. No, quite the opposite.

How does this make sense? We have the largest and richest oil shale reserves. But are we promoting it? Not a chance. Utah has the second largest oil shale reserves and they are bending over backward to promote this resource. Why aren’t we? It’s a question we should all be asking ourselves and our elected officials. If Colorado is going to remain competitive, we need to start changing how we do business.

KEN ROBAR
Grand Junction

Dodd and Frank should be held accountable

Thank you to Denny Herzog for his Oct. 23 column regarding “Rep. Frank deserves big share of blame for our economic mess.” It was very informative. While I do not always agree with Herzog, this one was a winner.

My personal belief is that both Rep. Frank and former Sen. Dodd should somehow have been held accountable for what they did. And as he said it, “All we can do, is ask the people of the Fourth District of Massachusetts: Why do you elect this guy?” — which they keep doing.

MARY ANN SHIPPERT
Grand Junction

Obama presidency is adding to budget woes

You will not see most of this on the big three television news reports or in newspapers.
There are almost a quarter of a million more federal employees today than the day George W. Bush left office. Obama’s 40 some czars and Michelle’s 20 some personal staff are just the beginning.  (Hillary Clinton had three on her staff and Laura Bush had one).  Imagine what the unemployment rate would be if we weren’t paying the salaries for about another quarter-million government employees.
There are almost twice as many limousines leased by the federal government today as there were when George W. left office.
Obama has spent more money traveling than all previous presidents combined.  Obama is like an expensive tourist rather than our president.
Now you know why the Democrats and liberals want our tax dollars.
The top 1 percent income earners are paying 38 percent of the federal income taxes while earning only 22 percent of the money. The bottom 47 percent pay no federal income tax.  Now tell me the rich are not paying their fair share.  The government needs to stop wasting money on programs that are not necessary and/or not working.
DICK TODD
Montrose



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