Email letters, July 29, 2013

City council politics are gist for new reality TV show

Oh, my, aren’t politics so much fun here in ole Happy Valley? Now that we no longer have the no-brainer incident, we can now move onto the other issue of the wicked witch of the north (chamber) trying to, and mostly succeeding, in manipulating the Grand Junction City Council.

And all this without even running or even attempting to actually run or getting elected to a position on the
council. Makes you wonder how many votes she’d actually get if she actually did run, instead of being the grand puppeteer pulling the strings behind the scenes.

Maybe this could all be turned into a soap opera that could all end up on one of those reality TV shows. It could be called “As the Valley Churns.”

JAMES OWEN
Fruita

Washington finally gets caught in trail of lies

Trayvon Martin made a good point: Don’t attack people; they might just defend themselves.

I saw protestors wrecking cop cars and burning property that doesn’t belong to them — just the kind of role models our youth like Trayvon need. Why do we allow it go on?

Why do we accept that Benghazi, that the IRS attacking certain groups, that the Department of Justice did no wrong and that journalists are arrested for doing their job? Well, I feel there is a whole pile of “phony” about Trayvon, too. He got sent to Auntie’s house because he kept getting in trouble at home, 200 miles away. Maybe removing him from all his bad influences was the reason?

Why can’t the president remember what he was doing the night Benghazi was attacked and people’s bodies were dragged through the street? Why can’t somebody that just did the deed step up and say, “Yeah, I did that” when asked? Uh, I plead the Fifth, but I’m gonna have my say first? 

Don’t stand there lying and tell me I’m a liar, Mr. President and Mr. Holder. Anybody who can look at the events in Washington D.C. of the last six months and say, “I made a good decision, this is what I voted for” needs psychological counseling of epic proportions.

Then after all the duck, dodge and hide, let’s use the death of a young man in a dispute to draw attention away from all our lies of the last year or longer? The lies have been going on, Washington finally just got caught.

And shame on the news media. None of it matters until they are the ones being singled out for preferential treatment. That’s it, done, no more, end of the rainbow, President Obama.

Remember when OJ got acquitted and all the white people protested and burned cities and turned over cop cars … ? Me neither.

RICHARD BRIGHT

Grand Junction

NBC’s showing of long miniseries on Hillary Clinton was inappropriate

I guess I just don’t understand the rules. If anyone regularly appears as a commentator or journalist on TV, he or she must take a leave of absence if running for political office.

NBC, however, finds it appropriate to show a four-hour Hillary miniseries right before the election. I guess the rules only apply to the unbiased.

L.W. HUNLEY
Grand Junction

Taxpayers to bear burden of Affordable Care Act

Appearing in Sunday’s paper was another of Dr. Michael J. Pramenko’s “booster” commentaries regarding the so-called “Affordable Care Act.”

The act hasn’t been fully implemented yet, and already the Congressional Budget Office, which Pramenko has so much faith in for paying for this monstrosity with “tax mechanisms,” has admitted that the act will cost nearly twice what it was intended to cost.

Who will pay for it? Taxpayers - not only their own, but anyone else who can’t or won’t. Those who champion this so-called reform, such as Pramenko, evidently like the law as written.

It was intended to cover the 45 million without insurance for one reason or another; it supposedly will cover 32 million not covered before.

If the government is paying for any part of it, it becomes nothing more than socialized medicine. The fact that tax dollars will be used for “free” contraceptives and even abortions makes it even less palatable. Laws are meant to apply equally to everyone — how in the world can the ACA be considered law, when it doesn’t?

Along with Pramenko boosting what he considers the best parts of the ACA, he makes a dig at President Bush for putting two wars and Medicare D on a credit card. This administration does all it can to raise the tax level supposedly on only the rich, and it is constantly on the prowl for more new taxes.

Personally, I don’t think the present administration cares one way or the other from whom the money comes, as long as it comes. When you are in a position to send your 13-year-old on a $75K spring break on the taxpayer’s dime, why would you?

I don’t know Pramenko. I will stipulate that he must have a ton of education, having M.D. behind his name. That, in and of itself, doesn’t mean he has a ton of common sense.

I suspect he is a died-in-the-wool, far-left Democrat, in the pocket of the present administration. Being a Democrat doesn’t make him all bad - promoting socialism does. There is one other thing: Does doctoring pay so badly that he must moonlight writing commentary articles for the Sentinel?

He talks up the individual mandate as if it were a good thing. Did he forget that the present administration isn’t ready to hold the states’ feet to the fire - only individuals? Could it be that the present administration is surprised the ACA made it even this far?

I think Pramenko should stick to medicine and leave political commentary to pundits and bloggers.

DAVID F. ZULIAN

Grand Junction

Uncompaghre revelers showed no respect for other campers

This is an open letter to anyone who uses the national forests around Grand Junction, particularly two groups (wedding and reunion) who were camped on the Uncompaghre the weekend of July 13.  Have you ever heard of common courtesy? Respect for others? Peace and quiet?

Shooting guns all hours of the day and night and screaming and howling until sun up not only disturbs the other campers, but the wildlife as well. Lots of babies and skittish mamas are in the forest. Did you ever stop to
think of that?

Most of us go to the mountains to get away from the noise and hubbub of the city. If you need to make noise all night, why not go out to the desert where you know you’re all alone and won’t be bothering anyone else?

If you weren’t taught about respect and proper behavior, I’m sorry, but now you are teaching this bad behavior to your children. Shame on you. Do you want to lose all privileges to our great outdoors for everyone? It could
come to that.

If you know of someone who behaves like this, please set him or her straight. The national forest belongs to all of us, not just a few. I am writing on behalf of my family and countless other campers.

MIKE WEST
Grand Junction

Sugarcoating of Obamacare hides bad medicine underneath

In a highly political effort to sugarcoat the insurance exchanges and Affordable Care Act bitter pills, Dr. Michael Pramenko joins the promotion blitz that is occurring across the country. I’ll just take on a couple of many items that he put a thick coating on to hide the bad medicine underneath.

According to Pramenko, partisan detractors of health care reform ignore the human element. Since he only looks at the medical component, he fails to mention the harm to the human element of being underemployed or not employed. And that’s being demonstrated all over the country by companies that are not expanding, not hiring, or are hiring part-time employees and cutting the hours of current employees.

Since President Obama has been in office, we have never had a monthly unemployment rate of less than 7.5 percent nationally. That’s the “adjusted” figure; it’s really higher than that. The ACA isn’t wholly responsible but it significantly contributes to a stagnant economy and thus, the ill effects on the human element.

Pramenko extols the ACA’s mechanisms to cover its costs and states that “Obamacare” will increase the solvency of Medicare.”  Does anyone remember how that happens?  Well, here’s how: $500 million was taken away from Medicare and shifted to Social Security, thereby increasing the solvency of Medicare and strengthening Social Security, according to Rep. Pelosi and Sen. Reid.

Of course, that’s nonsense as both programs are underfunded and the money doesn’t exist anyway. There is no increase in the solvency of either. We’ll see a profound negative impact on the human element as those programs collapse financially. The increased demand on both those programs since Obama took office has only accelerated that collapse. These are just a couple of the adverse effects on the human element caused by the ACA and its massive expansion of government.

Pramenko can pontificate all he wishes about the so-called positive aspects of the ACA, but Obama’s announced waivers to favored groups demonstrate something far different. As just one example that not all see only positive aspects of the ACA and insurance exchanges, ßsome 23 states have announced that they will not set up insurance exchanges. What do they know that Colorado doesn’t? 
   
I realize that Pramenko has a political reason to promote the ACA and Colorado’s insurance exchanges. You can be sure that while he encourages us to “leave our politics at the door” he won’t be leaving his there.
   
RICK L. COLEMAN
Grand Junction

Sentinel articles offer more insight into debate over fracking


Following on the heels of Sunday’s timely editorial – “New data aids industry in latest fracking fight” – two articles in Monday’s Sentinel afford added insight into the renewed “debate” over hydraulic fracturing.


Dennis Webb’s article — “Industry, BLM far apart on frack rule cost” — suggests that the oil and gas industry is grossly exaggerating (by almost 2000 percent) the costs of complying with revised rules proposed by the BLM to govern fracking operations on public lands.


In light of BP’s disastrous Deep Water Horizon spill in the Gulf of Mexico – apparently caused by a botched cement job – the BLM would require enhanced concrete casings for fracking wells drilled near potentially “usable ground water.” 
 
Moreover, the BLM’s new rules would “require public disclosure of chemicals used in fracking on public and tribal lands, hold fracking wells to certain construction standards, and govern the handling of fluids coming back up a well after fracking.” 


Thus, without directly repealing the “Halliburton Exceptions” to the Safe Drinking Water and Clean Water Acts, the BLM would partially fill the regulatory vacuum left by those dubious exceptions with common sense rules — including disclosure requirements akin to those already enacted in Colorado – which will permit more effective regulation of both “underground injection wells” and “produced water” evaporation ponds.


Meanwhile, the AP’s companion article — “Some say industry arrogance fueled anger about fracking” — offers good reason to remain skeptical about the industry’s strenuous objections to the BLM’s proposed rules.


As former Shell Oil Company President John Hofmeister opined, “Some industry leaders have suggested that the fracking boom has never caused water pollution”, but — while “the vast majority of wells don’t cause problems” — “everybody knows that some wells go bad.” 


As usual, the industry continues to obfuscate that fact — to avoid assuming the costs of prevention.


BILL HUGENBERG
Grand Junction



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