E-mail letters, May 9, 2011

Obama should order
destruction of hideout

There is one remaining act of bravery that would be proof positive of the wisdom and especially the courage of the commander in chief, President Obama.

Ever since he decided that it is inappropriate to show photos of Osama bin Laden’s corpse, we’ve been bombarded by the media with videos of the compound in Abbottabad — the scene where justice finally prevailed. It appears that throngs of people are flocking there and that many of the natives may be trying to turn bin Laden’s hideout into some kind of shrine.
Isn’t it only logical to take action to desecrate this pretentious piece of real estate for exactly what it is: the “hell-hole haven” for one of history’s most vicious killers?

There’s no need for five or six meetings with military advisers or to sleep overnight to ponder the consequences. All it takes is a command decision to destroy the compound. Simply evacuate the facility, remove people from the immediate area and bomb the place to smithereens, leaving bin Laden’s lair as devastated as he left our World Trade Center.

Instead of a monument, let this place be the Muslim terrorist’s Gound Zero, a constant reminder of our vigilance to obtain justice and also a tribute to the brave Navy SEALs and their successful mission

God Bless America and our Navy Seals!
Richard Doran

King failed to distance himself
from ‘stray cats’ analogy

When reading or listening to statements made by others, some of us pay very close attention to the words that are used or not used.  What we also look for is if the statement made is either an expansion on, or an endorsement of, the views of another as the latter “endorsement” means “I agree with.”
That is why Sen. Steve King’s vehement denial that he likened immigrants to “stray” cats, is totally without validity.

In the interview during which the incident occurred, if King did not agree with the interviewer’s characterization, he had the opportunity to divorce himself from it.  He chose not to do so.  In fact, he did the exact opposite. He not only endorsed it, but actually built upon it. In such an instance, it matters not at all who spoke the words.

Some of us pay particular attention to what any politician says that could reflect his real beliefs and values, as that will determine how he or she acts. In this case, King, as he all too frequently does, fails miserably.

First, if one makes a mistake, one should admit to it, and neither attempt to defend nor excuse it. Second, the gentleman quite obviously and all too frequently does not understand the subjects to which he attempts to address himself or the tools he tries to use. In this case, the latter is not only the English language, but language itself.

That is probably why, in the one debate in which I saw King perform, all he could do was repeat mantra and utter platitudes.  Of course, that says even less of those who support him.
Robert I. Laitres

Obama hypocritical
on release of photos

I find it interesting that President Barack Obama’s reason for not releasing the bin Laden death photos is that they might incite Muslims to violence. Yet he fully supported releasing the Abu Ghraib prison photos because they made President George W. Bush look bad, even though they would obviously incite Muslims to violence.

What hypocrisy!
Jeremiah Habecker
Grand Junction

Garco commissioners
favor certain taxpayers

The recent decision by the Garfield County Commissioners to discontinue the Health Impact Assessment for Battlement Mesa is a prime example of how dysfunctional and corrupted the two-party political system has become.

This decision was apparently not made on the basis of facts or scientific knowledge but on the basis of the personal opinions of the commissioners and the Antero lawyer. They presented no evidence or expert testimony to back up their claims or reasons for the decision.

One of the more interesting reasons given was Commissioner Martin’s comment that the cost of the study was unfair to the taxpayers. Since the study was done to determine how to protect the health and environment of all the residents of the county from the effects of gas drilling, it is not difficult to determine just which taxpayers he was talking about.

It is time that the public send a strong message to all elected officials that since their salary and benefits are paid for with tax dollars, they are in fact public servants and have a duty to serve all the citizens equally and not just their corporate masters who donate huge sums of money to their election campaigns. The only way to do this is to immediately recall them from office when they breach that duty.
Garry Evenson
Battlement Mesa

No more Pakistan raids
if they return our money

I think President Barack Obama should apologize to Pakistan for our troops coming in and killing Osama bin Laden. He should then ask their government to return at least the last $3 billion that we have given them in the past several years for aid.

After they return the money, we will promise no further raids and no further monetary aid. Case closed.
Tom Dennis
Grand Junction

Lessons of bin Laden raid
don’t justify use of torture

Americans can sleep better at night now that Osama bin Laden is dead. We should learn the right lessons from his elimination — and one of them is not that the use of torture has somehow been justified.

On the contrary, the information leading to bin Laden was diverse and came from many sources. We
will never know how many additional potential sources we lost because we squandered moral capital by torturing detainees, or how many young Muslims we pushed into the arms of terrorist recruiters.

I pray we do not adopt the evil methods of torturers like Gadhafi, Assad, Hussein, Hitler, Pol Pot, and
Stalin. Jesus would be a better model for us to follow.
Chris Parsons
Grand Junction

Water agreement is more
press release than policy

The water agreement is more of press release by Denver Water and the Colorado River District than anything. With 33 entities to reach an agreement on this proposal, it’s a long way down the road before this happens.

Why wasn’t the Northern Colorado Conservation District included in this great agreement? Denver Water is going to fund reservoirs to replace water they take to Denver, but how is it going to get past all of the environmental concerns that building reservoirs create? Will building reservoirs create the needed snowfall to fill them?

What makes Denver Water think it can take the high-quality water from the high country and leave the Western Slope with lower quality water out of these new reservoirs?

This announcement was more about staying out of court or trying to use “perception is reality” than anything.

Thirty some years ago, state Rep. T. John Bair from Loma wanted to move the Utah state line to the continental divide. T. John’s idea could have merit today and is likely to succeed.
John Justman

Missed opportunities
in bin Laden killing

We missed an opportunity.  We missed an opportunity to take the high road and not act as the terrorists we are battling.  We missed the opportunity to bring Osama bin Laden here to New York for a speedy trial.

Even though public executions have been outlawed in this country, we missed the opportunity to make an exception and hang this man at ground zero. We missed an opportunity for all Americans to obtain closure and be witness to justice.
David K. Foster
Grand Junction

Loud music, profanity mar
Botanical Gardens concert

Does anyone screen or care about the volume or content of concerts held at the Botanical Gardens? I wonder?

The concert held May 6 on the garden’s ground was too loud and the content of the songs were vulgar. We were unable to sit in our home with the windows open to enjoy the evening breeze when all we could hear was profanity and screaming coming from the concert being held at the Botanical Gardens.

If it was a TV or radio I could turn it off. Please turn down the volume and screen the types of bands that the public has to hear in their own yards. It’s unfair!
Laurie Buninger
Grand Junction

Medicare patients can
help agency save money

Five years ago, a diagnosis of sleep apnea prompted a prescription for supplemental oxygen while sleeping. Medicare supports such prescriptions by paying providers $200 a month (including a $40

Instead of using Medicare assistance, I bought an oxygen concentrator for $700. As a consequence, Medicare saved $9,600 and I saved $2,400 in co-payments during this time period. It should be
emphasized that these were actual savings and not theoretical estimates.

Not all Medicare patients could save such amounts, but if prescribing doctors made patients aware of such options, I believe there would be a large number of patients who would accept responsibility for following a doctor’s prescription in this manner.  This is a painless way for patients to help save Medicare for future generations.
Grand Junction

After bin Laden killing,
reassess foreign aid

Our president just did something very presidential. He directed or authorized the taking out of our arch-enemy, super American hating and mass-killing Osama bin Laden.

As my ol’ preachin’ Daddy might have said: “Hallelujah, Brother!”

I’ll not waste any time on the mind -warping chore of trying to rationalize bin Laden’s existence into some connection with humanity.

Now that our president has demonstrated this example of leadership and political courage, and as commander in chief, I’d personally appreciate the image of him pointing to our multiple billions of foreign aid to folks who don’t like us much anyway, for consideration in budget cutting. (Why do we borrow so much to give away?)

Many, I’d say, all American programs should be considered first. And while we’re at it, why not —since al-Qaida has effectively, by word and deed, declared war on us — let it be known to all in the area who support them that we will consider support of al-Qaida opposition to us. Therefore, it may required that we penetrate to reach al-Qaida support and interests and reduce or cease any foreign aid.
Ray Lashley
Grand Junction

Obama treats SEALs poorly
when it’s convenient for him

Thanks to Denny Herzog for the column about the true heroes — the Navy SEALs. It was a very good column.

I would remind Henrietta Hay and others like her that the Bible declares “Those who live by the sword shall die by the sword.” Osama bin Laden has by now discovered there are no 72 virgins (or white raisins) for jihadi like him.

The SEALs did as they are trained to do. They secured the mission with the least amount of waste and came home with the least amount of loss. A majority of Americans would NEVER be willing to
attempt even washing out of their training.

This administration — this president, if he is to take credit for the success — must also be confronted with the embarrassment he caused. I remember a Navy SEAL court martialed because an enemy combatant got a bloody nose during the capture and interrogation. That court martial ought not ever have happened. A SEAL given court martial because an enemy captured live says he was abused contrasted to a SEAL rightly praised for dispatching a target and removing a threat. Both under this fraud’s watch.

The only things President Obama did right was give the go ahead (finally) and, most importantly, he stayed away from their training and mission until they had accomplished the goal. But I will always say he did this more for himself than for the country he loathes, and works to destroy.
Robert James Burkholder

Krauthammer column must
be just for comic relief

I kick myself for being so dense. I finally realized this morning why there is a Charles Krauthammer column in the paper every Sunday morning. It is for comic relief.

Krauthammer’s reputation is as the country’s foremost sabre-rattler. There is no reason for living if you can’t be involved in at least one war. If you have a military you can’t just let it sit there and wither away from lack of combat use.
The May 8 column put me over the edge. It starts with the assertion that nobody was doing anything about bin Laden prior to 911. I seem to remember at least two different bombing attacks against places where our intelligence said there might be a good chance to catch bin Laden during the Clinton administration. I guess to keep Krauthammer pleased we should have declared war —  against somebody, anybody — instead of trying to use a relatively surgical method of getting him.
No, the Krauthammer column May 8 suggests that everything we’ve done in Iraq and Afghanistan was part of the necessary lead-in to catching up with bin Laden. Most estimates now say that all of our recent adventures in the Middle East have cost you and me $3 trillion dollars. The military/industrial/congressional complex is very happy, though. And rich!

According to the ultra-macho Krauthammer, we probably couldn’t have accomplished what a very small part of our military did this week without all of the foreplay. That was one expensive assassination.

Krauthammer has one thing right, though. Killing bin Laden will not stop terrorism, even though he does indicate that we will someday. Terrorism is a technique, not a method of warfare that is combated by hundreds of thousands. Terrorism is harassment and intimidation and is as old as man and will always exist.
John Borgen
Grand Junction

Raising domestic production
won’t decrease gas prices

I feel compelled to dispell any idea that domestic drilling and production of oil and gas somehow reduces our dependence on foreign oil. These commodities are purchased by the highest bidder, be that China or England or any other interest or investor.

Also untrue is the idea that domestic production would reduce the price. The price of oil and gas is determined by our willingness to pay. It’s as simple as that. Why would an oil investor sell its property for $2 a gallon when we are willing to pay $4?

Investors raise the price of gasoline in summer because we are willing to pay more to travel. Heating oil and natural gas prices rise in winter months because we need to heat our homes.

While it cannot be disputed that the oil and gas industry employs many here in western Colorado and eastern Utah, it is not without a price. Remember, these are our resources, not theirs. These oil and gas producers and investors are among the wealthiest people in the world. We need not give them subsidies to extract our resources.
John A. Ijams
Grand Junction

Choose correct proteins
for insect control

The science article by Gary McCallister in The Daily Sentinel on April 30, “Is it wrong to want baby blood-suckers to die?” contained several misleading statements.

The correct spelling is Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis (BTi). There are many varieties of Bacillus thuringiensis (BT) that are toxic to different groups of insects. The active protein toxins of BT act by binding to the insect’s midgut epithelium and disrupting the integrity of membranes. The insects stop feeding and die through starvation.

BTi is used to control mosquito larvae and other dipteran species, but it is not used to control grub worms or pests on cabbage. However, these types of pests can be controlled with other varieties of BT.

BT var san diego is active against certain coleopteran insects (beetles) such as the Colorado potato beetle and elm leaf beetle. BT var kurstaki is widely used for lepidopteran (butterflies) pests such as the gypsy moth on trees and cabbage loopers and other pests of cabbage and lettuce. In recent years genes encoding the BT proteins have been genetically engineered and expressed in tobacco and tomato to control the tobacco hornworm, in cotton for control of the cotton bollworm, and in corn for control of the corn rootworm.

The use of BT to control susceptible insect species has increased in recent years due to environmental concerns and insecticide resistance associated with the use of synthetic chemical pesticides. BT products are safe to mammals and non-target organisms, and humans do not have to be concerned with the exposure to them on their food or from handling them.

So if you plan to use a BT formulation make sure that you apply the correct BT formulation as specified on the label. One useful reference on this topic is “Analytical Chemistry of Bacillus thuringiensis,”edited by L. A. Hickle and W.L. Fitch, 1990. 
George Tompkins
Grand Junction

Place all trash on same
side of street to aid city

The new CNG city garbage truck smell great, reduce fuel costs and the right-hand drive should be safer. I understand that the diesel budget is one of the largest cost to the city (us taxpayer), so thanks, Grand Junction.
I have an idea that would save us taxpayers even more money. Recently, I observed a garbage truck backing up on 28 ½ Road from Elm Avenue to pick up the trash cans on the other side of the same street. Would it be such an inconvenience for residents to place all garbage cans on the same side of
the street? Why travel the same street in both directions? A next-door resident could help the elderly person with their cans, if necessary.

The city has a special program for the disabled customers. The driver will bring the cans to the curb.

This could reduce the fuel cost as much as 50 percent, be much safer, reduce noise and the time spent on the streets. On our street, most homes do this and the others would if it were brought to their attention.

Why not send out a plea with our next bill and set up some sort of system for which side of the
street to place trash cans?  Maybe even the U S Postal Service could use this system and my mail would arrive before 5 p.m.
City drivers are true professionals and need all the help they can get from their customers.
Robert W. Wilson
Grand Junction

King’s vote suggest
he prefers the 1950s

If nothing else, Sen. Steve King’s votes in the state legislature are entirely predictable.

The latest is his vote against Senate Bill 244, which would have repealed an antiquated Colorado law making adultery and “promoting sexual immorality” illegal.

Commenting on the existing law, legal scholar Jonathan Turley of George Washington University opined: ” It’s quite disappointing, if not embarrassing, for Colorado to affirmatively retain these types of laws. These laws harken back to an earlier period, where a majority of citizens claimed the right to impose their values and morals on their neighbors.

“The notion of a government policing immorality runs against the grain of our constitutional system. That is more often associated with countries like Iran, where morality police roam the streets,” he said.

As a constituent of Sen. King, I propose he introduce a bill in the next legislative session entitled “The Colorado Ideal Family Structure Act.“Among other things, this law would mandate all families in Colorado be structured so that the husband is solely responsible for providing food and shelter; the wife for bearing and nurturing the standard 2.5 children (as well as being subservient to her husband in all things); dinner be on the table within 30 minutes of the husband arriving home from work; compulsory church attendance; and most importantly, all family pets must be obedience trained.

Let’s celebrate the 1950’s by making it the law.

E. Michael Ervin
Grand Junction


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