E-mail letters, June 30, 2011

Violent video games are
different from cartoons

Members of the U.S. Supreme Court may vote as they see fit, of course. Just don’t insult the intelligence of anybody with common sense by claiming that there’s no difference between the bloody and desensitizing violence and soft porn of today’s video games and the roadrunner and coyote cartoons. Any court member believing that should hide under his robe for shame.

Second, despite the congressman from New York thinking other states should now feel it’s OK to sanction same-sex marriage, the fact remains that the definition of marriage was established long ago amid the apples and other delicious fruit in Eden — not in the Big Apple.
Bill Forbes

Federal debt ceiling
may be unconstitutional

The Republican/libertarian/tea party strategy of furthering their economic and political agenda by holding the federal debt ceiling “hostage” may be on the verge of collapse, now that a number of
scholars are indicating the debt ceiling itself is unconstitutional.

To bolster their contention, these scholars cite specific language from Section 4 of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. It states:

“The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion shall not be questioned.”

The experts are saying this language clearly indicates the United States is obligated to pay its public debt without restriction or limit, regardless of how that debt was incurred. Their position is
reinforced by a U.S. Supreme Court case decided in 1935 (Perry v. United States, 294 U.S. 330).

Wouldn’t it be ironic if a key element of the right wing’s controversial agenda is upset by the very document they claim to hold so dear and insist must be adhered to without even a scintilla of
E. Michael Ervin
Grand Junction

Daily Sentinel is a
reader-friendly paper

I wanted to thank the Sentinel’s new management for making it once again, a reader-friendly paper.

The days of having to find a magnifying glass (in some cases a microscope!) to read the comics, do the crossword, read the classifieds and especially to be able to read the wording of the editorial cartoons are thankfully over.

We can once again find the obituaries someplace besides on the last page of the classifieds. Having the “You Said It” in one place on a specific day is very nice. The follow-up page for an article is clearly noted.

The photos and regional articles continue to be outstanding. Thank you!
Cathy Linn

Congress must act quickly
to salvage our nation

Were our government a private enterprise, some insightful CEO would declare bankruptcy, dismiss the Board of Directors, and possibly go into receivership. The receiver could did make decisions necessary to prevent total insolvency. Our elected representatives, regardless of party, have toed their party line to a point where our precious form of government has become compromised and perhaps, soon, untenable. They continue to claim to represent “the people”.....which people I am not sure. The Republicans demand savings, and then seem to wish those savings be used to offset further tax cuts; net difference: nada. The Democrats wish to “invest” the savings in new programs and initiatives; net difference: zilch.
The sad truth is we all demand spending reductions, but, we all feed at the trough of government benefits. While demanding less spending, less taxes, and less of everything none seem to want their trough disturbed. Retirees and soon to be retirees demand no changes to their programs, homeowners demand retention of mortgage interest deductions, veterans claim their benefits cannot be cut,  farmers and oil companies still expect their subsidies, etc. etc. etc. The representative form of government has been hijacked by life-long politicians who have long ago ceased being able to do what is right for America, and continue to do what is right for their special interest contributors.
Our “representatives” must act fast to salvage our nation, their dignity and our form of government. Sure, next election we could possibly throw the bums out, nut by, then, the damage may be too great.
Jim Hoffman
Grand Junction

Motorized recreation is
as good as other forms

All forms of recreation provide similar human benefits; pleasure, fun, exercise, friendship, group involvement, etc. Motorized recreation provides all the same human benefits as any other form of enjoying our lands.  It is just a choice that people make as to how they like to recreate.

The main concern with the motorized recreation group is that they can do grave damage to our lands. Thus the need for awareness and more of an attitude of stewardship of our lands.  This awareness can only be learned through education. The number of people using our public lands today is growing and therefore there is a need for all of the users to become more tolerant of each other’s chosen form of recreation.  There is a growing need to learn to “play together” with more tolerance.  We cannot deny one form of recreation over another.

The second major benefit of motorized recreation is the economic contribution to the local communities, the county and the State.  A recent study shows that motorized recreation has steadily increase since 2000.  Registrations for OHV’s has increase by 145% between 2000-2008.  There are over 200,000 registered OHVs in Colorado with annual registration fee of $25.25. That’s a little over $5 million in funds coming back to the land managers to maintain and create more recreation opportunities that all users benefit from.

The study also showed that the OHV recreation business created over 10,000 jobs as well as generating over one billion in revenue for the communities, counties and State of Colorado. 

In summary, I think it would be wise to rethink our attitudes and address the benefits of motorized recreation and the need for more education to increase awareness of responsible recreation on our public lands.
James Solomon

Balanced budget amendment
will create more fiscal problems

We are still deeply in a recession caused by a financial bubble centered on the housing and mortgage industries. It has been unusually severe, second only —  thus far —  to the Great Depression of the 1930s.

In normal times, capitalism is susceptible to business downturns that involve firings, layoffs, business failures and the slowing or stopping of manufacturing production. Just one of the causes is often-over-exuberant production relative to consumer demand and the build up of unsold inventories.

There are many other possibilities but our economic system is meant to be so-called self-correcting although there will be pain suffered by those who had no direct responsibility in the decisions that caused the imbalance(s) that necessitated the contraction. Those responsible say that it is a natural process and pain is a necessary part of regaining a balance. They rarely are the ones to suffer the pain.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch Mc Connell has stated that he is going to push for a national balanced budget amendment. Think about that for a minute. We are still seeing the destruction that comes from most states being required to always have a balanced budget. When the downturns inevitably occur, cutbacks in services and employment exacerbate the downturn. On a national level it would be far more damaging.

Obama is being excoriated for current deficit spending, most of which is required by law. If that spending hadn’t taken place we would definitely be in a full blown, devastating depression.
If an amendment to the Constitution is necessary, both nationally and within states, it should be for a requirement for a “rainy day” fund that could only be touched under severely restricted circumstances to stop the insanity of fiscal requirements that harm, not help. The current system is the equivalent of medieval bloodletting.
John Borgen
Grand Junction


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