Email letters, March 14, 2014

Reid puts words into Udall’s mouth

No matter how hard the Sentinel and most other newspapers try to build up Sen. Mark Udall’s record, he has been little more than Harry Reid’s ventriloquist dummy for the last four years.

Grand Junction

CIA probably had good reason to get into Senate computers

I see that Sen. Diane Feinstein is all upset and is accusing the CIA of “spying” on senators. 

Personally, I see no problem with this, IF indeed it is true. Members of Congress and/or their staff are the biggest “leakers” around. They are the ones protected by the press members who divulge information “from a source directly involved but not authorized to speak/confirm,”  etc., etc.

If the CIA got into Senate staff’s computers, then I am satisfied that they had good reason to do so.  To hear that Feinstein has “grave concerns” and invokes the Constitution in doing so is a joke in and of itself.


Grand Junction

Ex-Republican now supports Fletcher for House District 54

I didn’t leave the party; it left me.

As an active Republican for 60 years (since I was old enough to vote), I worked in every election in which I was in the country. The 2012 election year and the legislative sessions since then made it clear that the
Republican Party had abandoned its constitutional, conservative, limited government values and principles for which I had worked for so many years.

I finally realized that I was wasting my time believing I could make a difference in the party. That is the reason I unaffiliated from the Republican Party. I am now registered unaffiliated.

I didn’t change to Libertarian or American Constitution Party, as I wanted the freedom to support any candidate who stood for constitutional, conservative, limited government.

I am now working for “JJ” Fletcher for House District 54. His major concern is economy and jobs for western Colorado. I urge you, though, to check his position on other issues on his website,, and his Facebook page.

I don’t think we need another lawyer or politician who aligns himself with Front Range politicians. We need a businessman who knows how to work and create jobs. We need a representative who will work for the interest of the Western Slope.

If, after learning about him and his issues on the website, you agree with me, I ask that you support him by contributing time or money.


House Bill 1253 would give unconstitutional control to ‘professional’ people

An 81-page Soviet-style bill has quickly and unobtrusively popped into the Colorado House of Representatives, and your readers will want to know about it. It is House Bill 1253 introduced by state Reps. Elizabeth McCann (D-8) and Linda Newell (D-26). It is being voted on for a second time because it did not pass in 2013.

 It is intended to “prohibit the possession of firearms by persons who pose a threat…”  It does this by certifying someone mentally deficient or a substance abuser. And, by the way, “certification for mental health or substance abuse” can be made without a jury trial. You could lose your Second Amendment rights for being drunk or high some time.

The decision on who it is that poses a threat is determined by an undefined “professional person.” This need not be someone who is medically trained. A professional person could be a judge, lawyer, elected or unelected official. It could be Elizabeth McCann or Linda Newell.

In other words, the “professional person” could be just as it was in the old Soviet Union. People identified could be political opponents. I was a tourist in the Soviet Union during the Cold War, and I drove my new German car past the prisons in which the political classes held those whom they claimed were insane.

This bill is not constitutional, at least in the United States. It is very likely that McCann and Newell are being pressured by the federal government because Colorado has borrowed so much federal money to pay unemployment compensation. Essentially the feds own us, and we have to vote this bill in.

Doesn’t the House of Representatives have more important matters to address than to cave into the federal government and violate our Constitution?

Colorado Springs

Valley citizens must be wary about supporting ExxonMobil

Regarding your editorial published Thursday, “This isn’t your dad’s oil shale development,” I say, “lots of luck” to the Grand Valley.

How can the Sentinel take such an optimistic position on ExxonMobil’s return when as the editorial said, “That in 1980 Exxon was the largest company in the world”, and yet felt no social or economic responsibility for the well-being of the people residing in the Grand Valley. 

How many times will we be fooled by Lucy pulling the football at the last minute from Charlie Brown?  Think the Grand Valley as Charlie Brown, and Lucy as ExxonMobil. Charlie Brown always has faith and always is betrayed.

When will we learn that ExxonMobil, as most corporations, is interested in one thing; its bottom-line profit. That said, we should be more wary, cynical and cautious about putting our faith in and support for ExxonMobil. And, shame on the Sentinel to allow itself to take such a naïve position.


Forest Service’s long-standing policy on water rights is prudent

Gary Harmon’s seemingly garbled report – “Water rights bill hits snag” – affords timely opportunity to review why President Obama threatened to veto Congressman Scott Tipton’s bill for being “overly broad” – after it passed the House by a vote of 238-174.

What’s missing from Harmon’s report and ignored by anti-government panderers is the underlying fact that the Forest Service has long been pursuing a sensible policy requiring “that ski areas surrender water rights to the U.S. Forest Service as a condition of obtaining their permits to operate on lands administered by the Forest Service” – so that legally acquired private rights to “beneficially use” public water obtained from National Forests under Colorado law remain dedicated to that purpose.

Since 1983 (under Republican President Ronald Reagan), Forest Service permits required ski areas to title water rights used for snow-making in the name of the “United States” –  ensuring that such water rights “run with the land” and cannot be readily transferred for other purportedly “beneficial” (commercial) uses – to the potential detriment of successor ski operators, local communities, graziers, and/or the national forests themselves.

For some 20 years, that common sense policy was inconsistently enforced (but not “waived”) —and some Colorado ski areas obtained water rights without so titling them. 

In 2004, Republican President George Bush’s Forest Service began requiring joint ownership of those water rights with the “U.S,” but “grandfathered” older noncompliant permits.  In 2011, President Obama’s Forest Service sought to restore consistency to the policy by requiring compliance as a permit renewal condition.

In December 2012, a federal court – without ruling on the policy – ordered the Forest Service to withdraw its directive, pending completion of the public process required by the Administrative Procedures Act.  That process is ongoing, and should properly result in re-ratification of the Forest Service’s prudent 30+ year-old policy.

Grand Junction

Water rights bill just another sign of federal oppression

Liberal life incursions! Where does it end? Now Democratic leaders, even the cosponsor of a water rights bill that would deny Washington D.C. the ability to take water rights away from major industry in western Colorado have decided they instead think it’s a good idea to impose federal law on us again. Where does it end?

I have a boat that sinks every time it’s used, and it needs thousands of dollars of commitment to keep it in the yard. If you don’t pay for the “privilege” of the government shoving the ownership of this boat down your throat, we are going to fine you and take your water to float that boat in whenever we want to. That boat is called “The Federal Government” or “The Imperialist Hoard.”

How is this right? How is this fair? How the hell did Americans vote these people into office and think they
weren’t going to try and tax us into submission? 

Wake up, America! The Internal Revenue Service, Federal Communications Commission, Department of Transportation, Department of Justice and the governor are not weapons to be used against us.

Grand Junction

Loss of Tribune disappoints Palisade’s mayor

It was with great regret that I read in The Palisade Tribune and The Daily Sentinel of Grand Junction Media’s decision to no longer publish The Palisade Tribune. I understand that this was made as a financial decision on the part of your management. The decision, though, has far-reaching effects on the town of Palisade.

Since 1903 the Tribune has been the one source of information for the upper end of the Grand Valley.  It gave the citizens of the Palisade area a means of communication that only a weekly newspaper could do. The Tribune gave the citizens of the area a much-needed resource of information, It was used to make the joyful announcements of births to new parents and the sadness of a loss of a long-time area resident, but, more especially, it was part of the glue that made Palisade special.

Over the years it also provided the citizens a place to catch up on the many happenings in and around the town. Reporters from the Tribune could be found in attendance at every town board meeting,  grand opening of a new business, parade or our many sporting events. Many of the events held at Palisade High School were covered in its pages. The Tribune was always involved with Fourth of July festivities and was a supporter of all the festivals for which Palisade is known.

Citizens who grew up here and had moved away were able to get a glimpse of their childhood though the stories by many of the writers that graced the pages of our hometown paper over the years. Many of these people have expressed their gratitude for being able to keep up with the town through the pages of the Tribune. Items that were specific to Palisade which may have been lost in the pages of a daily publication were sometimes the headline story in the Tribune.

The loss of this newspaper to the Palisade area will be felt by the citizens. Replacing it with a glossy semi-annual travel publication, I feel, is a slap in the face to the people of the Palisade area. That publication being distributed throughout the state is going to take the form of a travel brochure and not the weekly news of the town of Palisade.

My hope now is that you will cover and publish the news of the Palisade area in The Daily Sentinel with the same focus that The Palisade Tribune has since 1903. We in Palisade deserve at least that much consideration.


Radical-right GOP platform drives too many women away

I am a 76-year-old Republican. I voted Republican in Illinois, Wisconsin,  Nevada and, since 2000,  here in Colorado. I have watched Colorado go from Republican, to mixed, to Democrat, mostly with the help of the people moving to the Front Range.

Let’s face it.  It is not only the quality of the candidates, but the basics of our platform that is losing Republican votes. If the Republican base continues to be radical Christian and continues to oppose abortion and research using unwanted fetuses, the Republicans will never win another statewide election.  

Too many independent women out there believe their bodies and minds, are their own, and no one has the right to tell them what they can do with them. [ital] They are right. [ITAL]
Grand Junction

Hanging on to upside-down mortgage actually a smart move

Why haven’t local politicians, the chamber, economic development people and banks taken more active steps to inform even upside-down homeowners why walking away is a bad idea — not considering the credit score hit?

· The home is family shelter and will have to be replaced with other shelter.

· The home in an area they liked (neighborhood, schools), and there may not be suitable rentals in the same area.

· As homeowners, but not as tenants, they can take mortgage interest and property tax deductions.

· By renting, they pay a landlord’s mortgage interest and property taxes, and he or she takes the deductions.

· There is some likelihood that the rent payments help a landlord pay mortgage interest and taxes on his or her upside-down property.

· Property values will come back; rent is just down the drain.

On the banker’s side, when you see really cheap sales in the Sentinel, those are properties the government-loan guarantee programs are unloading. Those sales impair the value of other properties, including those on which banks hold mortgages, which hammers the bank’s security. Bankers should be front and center, encouraging people to hold onto even upside-down properties.

I haven’t seen the word from anyone about the upside to upside-down property. Everyone seems to have lost their voices.





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