Printed Letters: October 14, 2016

Sentinel biased in reporting on Trump

Another day, another completely biased paper. The second editorial in five days attacking Trump and the cartoon yesterday is enough. I had hoped for a change to balanced reporting. However, you have chosen to take The Daily Sentinel into the bowels of the biased media, which 75 percent of Americans don’t trust.

Where is the news about the DOJ collusion with the White House and Clintons, Podesta emails (massive), public and private position (outright admitting to lying to the people!), Wall Street speeches, pay to play with the Clinton Foundation/secretary of state, her server, DNC collusion, collapse of ObamaCare… I could fill several pages. What Trump said 11 years ago is disgusting, but is far less of an injustice to the American people than what the Clintons, Obamas and the DNC continues to do.

We all have a choice; mine today was to end my 18-year subscription to The Daily Sentinel. I will not support a biased and unprofessional media source.

Grand Junction

Schwartz will ensure 
government works for citizens

If the presidential shenanigans are burning you out, please don’t get so turned off that you don’t vote. We have an opportunity to vote for an energetic, inclusive, and results-oriented Congressperson this year — Gail Schwartz. I have first-hand experience with Gail when she represented us as a member of the Colorado Senate. She was instrumental in getting CDOT support for building the County Line parking lot on top of Grand Mesa. Prior to her involvement, we had two skiers die in a tragic accident. Gail was a strong advocate, making that giant flywheel of government work to meet critical citizen needs. Today, skiers on Grand Mesa are now parking in a lot safely away from Colorado Highway 65 traffic and her influence continues as CDOT is constructing turn lanes and making further improvements.

Gail was term-limited in the Senate and I was pleasantly surprised to see her step up and campaign to represent us. I am confident she will bring a positive approach, work collaboratively to get things done, and keep her ear to the ground to ensure that government works for its citizens. Will you please consider a vote for her?


Claims regarding Tipton’s
 stance on public lands are false

This year’s campaign is worse than any I have experienced thus far in my voting life. What strikes me is not so much the name calling as the casual misstatement of facts. On my mind is Gail Schwartz’s recent claims regarding Scott Tipton’s misuse of public lands.

Scott Tipton is well aware of, and supports, using public lands for the benefit of all and is protective against assaults on our land and water. Especially those of us on the Western Slope need someone who understands that agriculture must continue to play a part in our economy.

Several points of misinformation about Congressman Tipton and public lands include that he is selling off public lands. His record is that he does not support the selling of public lands. Rather, he supports keeping public lands accessible to the American people for appropriate multiple uses and to preserve them for future generations. Congressman Tipton has never co-sponsored or sponsored any legislation that would sell public lands.

Close to home, please know that he has worked to protect public lands and important cultural and historic treasures. He sponsored and passed legislation to designate Chimney Rock, near Pagosa Springs, as a national monument. Another example is his work that resulted in nearly 100,000 acres of beautiful natural forest as wilderness in our Hermosa Creek Watershed.

Please be alert that what is claimed is not always the case in an election that seems to have thrown honesty out of the window. Vote for Scott Tipton.


Voting for minimum wage 
increase is a no-brainer

In 1966, 50 years ago, the minimum wage was $1.25 — $50 a week. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, calculating for inflation, the wage of $1.25 in 2016 dollars would be $9.30. Proposition 70 on the Nov. ballot would raise the minimum wage to $9.30 in 2017, with increases each year to 2020, for a minimum wage of $12.

It would seem reasonable that Colorado should have a minimum wage comparable to 50 years ago. In 1966, housing was less expensive than today, a monthly rental could cost as little as $130; for $15,000 you could buy a small house. Rental properties today in Grand Junction have a 3 percent vacancy rate. It is difficult to afford housing even with wages higher than minimum. In communities across the country that have raised minimum wage, small businesses have reported that the increase in business has covered the increase in wages. Some small business owners have reported a profit margin.

Voting for Prop 70 is one of the easier choices to be made by voters on Nov. 8.

Grand Junction


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Read together, Gary Harmon’s Friday front-page story (“Rally both for Trump, against Clinton; ‘Deplorables’ gather outside her GJ office”) and Kyle Sullivan’s inane letter complaining that the “Sentinel [is] biased in reporting on Trump” are highly amusing.

While Sullivan claims that “75 percent of Americans don’t trust” the media, Gallup found that 84% of Republicans don’t trust the “mass media”, but trust levels among Democrats (51%) and Independents (30%) have been relatively constant – leading to the conclusion that Trump’s own disgruntled attacks on the press (along with those of right-wing talk radio and their ilk) account for
“conservatives’” distrust.  Therefore, the odds are that Sullivan wouldn’t recognize “balanced reporting” even if he saw it on “Faux Noise”.

While better-informed local readers appreciate the Sentinel’s recent efforts at editorial objectivity, they nonetheless criticize the presumably advertiser-driven bias in its local political reporting and for failing to fact-check the absurd right-wing memes that find their way into the paper.

For example, contrary to Gary Harmon’s reporting, only some 50 (not “about 100” ) aptly self-described “Deplorables” demonstrated across from local Democratic headquarters on Thursday, and – even if “local Democratic officials didn’t return his calls”—all Gary had to do to if he really wanted their comment was walk across the street (which he didn’t ). 

Similarly, Gary accurately reported the ironic fact that “Women for Trump” had to be led by a man, but not that their tiresome chants of “Lock Her Up” ignorantly alternated with “No Sharia Law” – when achieving the former would be much easier under the latter.

Clearly, even when the Sentinel does occasionally run credible wire-service stories—reporting that there is no real evidence (only
“optics”) of “DOJ collusion with the White House and Clinton’s”, or that John Podesta’s Russian-hacked (and perhaps altered) e-mails are (as yet) only mildly newsworthy, or that Hillary accurately referenced Abe Lincoln’s strategy in passing the 13th Amendment as an example of a politician’s “public and private positions”,  or that her “Wall Street speeches” confirmed that she is a well-informed and level-headed moderate on banking matters, or that there is no evidence of “pay to play” involving the Clinton Foundation and the State Department (as opposed to the Trump Foundation and the Florida and Texas state Attorney Generals), or that “no responsible prosecutor” would pursue charges in connection with her server, or that “DNC collusion” amounted to intra-party
“politics as usual”, or that the “collapse of Obamacare” can be readily prevented if Republicans really cared about fixing it – Kyle Sullivan, local “Deplorables”, and 86% of Republicans don’t believe it anyway.

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