Email letters, March 8, 2013

President dishonest about sequestration

One can’t help but wonder how many ardent supporters of President Obama would now be willing to acknowledge how dishonest he has been with all Americans regarding the origination, implementation and consequences of the recent sequestration passage.

In 2011 during the typical Washington gridlock over budgets and the U.S. deficit, it was Obama’s team who introduced sequestration. Clearly its hope was that implementing a harsh trigger for severe automatic budget cuts to America’s defense, which Republicans are far more concerned about than Democrats, would force Republicans to offer more in the way of increased taxes in order to avert the impact from Sequestration. Obama even stated that he would veto any attempt to change it.

Then, while campaigning in 2012, Obama straight-out lied to Americans about the origination of sequestration, stating that it was a Republican idea. It is true that Republicans and Democrats in Congress voted to accept it, as they knew it was the only leverage they might have to get Obama to make any cuts in spending.

Most recently Obama himself, as well as his Cabinet talking heads, has gone on record lying about the catastrophic impact that will result from sequestration and that it is the Republicans’ fault.

Republicans in Congress even offered Obama a one-time opportunity to do the right thing and provide him with great flexibility to cut spending on less meaningful programs and to continue funding more critical ones, but Obama even refused to take that offer, knowing that it would be incumbent upon him and his staff to make sound spending decisions, which would actually make him responsible to American taxpayers.

Shame on the Obama administration for proposing such large cuts to America’s defense in order to gain political advantage, then lying to all Americans about the entire process.


Grand Junction

Poor personnel management shown in firing of Unfug

It is interesting that the ongoing controversy about the firing of County Administrator Chantal Unfug seems only to be concerned with meeting openness.

Far more upsetting is the question of the management skills of the new commission. As a supervisor in a public agency, I would never have been allowed to summarily fire any subordinate without reason or warning.

Granted, the county administrator serves at the pleasure of the commission, but that does not excuse commissioners’ utter lack of regard for basic personnel management principles. If an employee is not performing satisfactorily, the employee should be informed that is the case and given a reasonable opportunity to correct his or her work.

That process should also include a review of the job description and how the commissioners expect the employee to meet those requirements.

Is there a job description? If so, it should be posted on the county website so we all know what the expectations are for this position.

If not, there should be, and it should be available to citizens. The commissioners’ rash action raises real questions about the level of management skills, often touted in their campaigns, actually possessed by the current incumbents.


Grand Junction

U.S. loses safety, respect under president’s leadership

In my view, all of the efforts of President Obama’s naive “can’t we all just get along” foreign policy have made us less safe and less respected worldwide. It should seem obvious that their continual disparaging of the concerns of our allies and the justifying and funding of our enemy’s misbehavior will not succeed in a world in which most countries are still totalitarian and intolerant of individual freedoms.

The “reset” with Russia failed, as Russian foreign policy continually functions contrary to democratic principles. The entire Middle East and North Africa are in flames, with the tiny national democracy movements overwhelmed by the radical Islamist movements. Negotiations with Syria resulted is a bloody civil war.
Ever-arrogant Iran is even closer to having nuclear-tipped missiles, and its support of Hezbollah and Hamas places Israel in constant danger. With President Hosni Mubarak gone, Egypt is now under the control of the Muslim Brotherhood, a sworn enemy of both Israel and the U.S. Incredibly, this administration is providing Egypt with 20 F-16s and 50 Abrams tanks.

Intransigent North Korea is on the verge of developing nuclear-tipped, long-range missiles that can reach western U.S. territories. China is on a path to challenge the U.S. military in coming decades, and this administration is hollowing out our military forces.

Our repeated inaction to counterterrorism has simply encouraged more attacks as in Benghazi and Algeria. Secretary Clinton, for the still-unexplained murders and unsolved Benghazi attack, has taken the responsibility, but not the blame. How Clintonesque!

With Clinton’s resignation Obama has chosen her ideological twin, Viet Nam protester John Kerry, as her replacement as secretary of state. America’s influence in the world will continue to decline under his leadership, and all Americans will be even less safe as a result.



City Council lacks drive to buy local vehicles

Editor’s note: After this letter was originally posted, city officials said the notice of the bid for vehicles did go to local dealers, as it does with all vehicle purchases, but no local dealers submitted a bid.

I read the article about the City Council in Thursday’s edition of the Sentinel. I got to almost the end of the article and saw that the council had approved the purchase of four sport utility vehicles for the police department and another vehicle for the transportation department, with all five vehicles being ordered from dealerships outside of Grand Junction.

With both the chamber of commerce and the downtown businesses promoting the idea that we all should shop locally and buy locally, why is it that the city council feels it is appropriate not to go and buy from local dealerships in Grand Junction or even the Western Slope? And you wonder why the general public doesn’t trust politicians.



Colorado politicians succumb to pressure on gun legislation

I find the current rush to pass a bevy of anti-gun bills unsettling to say the least.

What I find more unsettling is the identity of the authors and the pressure that has been exerted from outside influences. From research it appears that six of the bills were written with the help of Michael Bloomberg’s super PAC Independence USA. I think the main influence was what every politician succumbs to—money. Money promised to aid in his or her re-election.

Politicians who were on the fence all got a phone call from Vice President Joe Biden. Based upon knowledge of how East Coast and Washington politics are handled, I am sure campaign-money promises were made and veiled threats given.

I am very disheartened by the fact that this type of politics has found its way to Colorado, I know these things have been going on from time to time, but the “in-your-face” from Bloomberg and Biden really took me aback.

I had always assumed that Colorado representatives and senators would at least vote the wishes of their constituents and not cave in to outside influences. I was wrong. Now, with our eyes open, we can move forward to vote in people who will abide by the wishes of the people that put them in power.

Keep your eyes open to where the money trail goes when these people come up for re-election. It will tell the tale.


Valley tradition of burn season valued more than health

We all live in a wonderful and progressive small city. That said, we once again are entering the ungodly long three-month burning/pollution “season.”

We all endure unhealthy air in the name of convenience and tradition. Laws for smoking pale as compared to our smoke particulate-saturated, burning valley. It is immoral to do things that openly and knowingly hurt people.

Many of us wonder if our air quality officials actively lobby at the local and state level for pollution-free air. It seems protectors are scarce.

If we need to continue to burn and pollute, how about two weeks rather than 25 percent of a year so those of us medically affected can leave our valley during this period.

Human health first, convenience and tradition second. Our priorities are presently dangerous and wrong. I wonder what our visitors think.


Grand Junction

Registered gun owners must have legal responsibilities in nationwide gun culture

Some thoughts on guns:

Anyone passing a background check and registering a gun can have as many guns of any type as he or she pleases. A registered gun owner has the legal responsibility for how that gun is used. A registered gun owner has the responsibility to see that a background check is done and passed and the gun is re-registered to a new owner if the gun is either sold or given to someone else. The registered owner has the legal responsibility for the security of the gun.

If the gun is stolen, a police report must be filed immediately substantiating that it was, in fact, stolen. Nevertheless, a registered gun is the total responsibility of the registered owner until the registration has been re-registered to the new qualified owner as described above.

Serious prosecution of the registered owner should result from the gun being legally misused, regardless of the person in possession of and misusing the gun. A reasonable time period should allow persons to register all unregistered guns in their possession.

Any person after a certain date in possession of an unregistered gun should be severely prosecuted. As is the case currently, a crime committed with a gun, particularly an unregistered gun, should require serious penalties.

We have a gun culture in this country. Presumably registered owners of guns are very responsible. The above makes it a matter of law that a registered owner is solely responsible for the use of that gun until the re-registration has taken place.

The horse is out of the barn as far as the number of unregistered guns currently existing. Anybody possessing such a gun can register it as long as he or she qualifies; otherwise the gun must be confiscated.

All of the above should be a federal system.


Grand Junction

Noble’s Second Amendment view is a jaw-dropper

When I attended the Grand Junction City Council candidates’ forum put on by Kids Voting Mesa County, I learned something “new.”

According to candidate Robert Noble, a former federal law enforcement officer, the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was only for “times of war or struggles.” He believes that southern states originally insisted upon it to protect them from slave uprising. He said it is not valid any more.

I think there is a bruise on my jaw where it hit the floor. The article in today’s edition of the paper mentioned some of his comments.


Grand Junction



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Don Boyles takes a “faux news” approach to information. T
But,the term has been adapted by Congress in more recent years to describe a new fiscal policy procedure originally provided for in the Gramm-Rudman-Hollings Deficit Reduction Act of 1985—an effort to reform Congressional voting procedures so as to make the size of the Federal government’s budget deficit a matter of conscious choice rather than simply the arithmetical outcome of a decentralized appropriations process in which no one ever looked at the cumulative results until it was too late to change them. If the dozen or so appropriation bills passed separately by Congress provide for total government spending in excess of the limits Congress earlier laid down for itself in the annual Budget Resolution, and if Congress cannot agree on ways to cut back the total (or does not pass a new, higher Budget Resolution), then an “automatic” form of spending cutback takes place. This automatic spending cut is what is called “sequestration.”
No, this is strictly a well intentioned “misfire” made by congress for a dysfunctional congress. It is now being used by teabagging pubs to try to force the POTUS to break with the program voters elected him to do. The spin Don is trying to make is to lay it back on the President. Congress made this bed and the house pubs are trying to corrupt its intention as a strong arm tool to maintain an agenda voters turned down. 
YES, Don, it is the house pubs fault and theirs alone!

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