Printed letters, Sept. 29, 2010

Grant column wrong

about King’s record

In his recent column, Bill Grant presented several fallacies that need to be addressed. He is mistaken about the economics behind the financial collapse, my policy proposals and the policy proposals of my opponent.

The restricted credit Grant refers to is a result of the current recession, not a cause of it. One major cause of the financial crisis was easy access to credit. This was made possible by artificially low interest rates and a variety of government schemes, resulting in loans being made to high-risk individuals and businesses. Many of these defaulted, triggering the economic downturn.

It is my position that the government should not be risking taxpayers’ money by channeling it through a Fannie Mae-style, state-backed agency. A more efficient way to incentivize investment is to allow businesses and individuals to keep more of their earnings, enabling them to invest in their businesses as they see fit.

On the issue of transportation infrastructure spending, the statements from both Grant and my opponent are entirely inaccurate. FASTER did not provide a dedicated funding stream for roads and bridges. FASTER actually replaced an existing source of dedicated funding, and made the money collected from increased vehicle registrations available for non-transportation spending. FASTER took money away from roads and bridges and diverted it to pet projects. This is in exchange for higher costs on Colorado families during a recession, and the creation of several new expensive state bureaucracies.

The hollowness of my opponent’s argument was evident by her repeated refusal to answer questions, and her attempts to distract from the real issues by using personal attacks. Rather than trying to divert attention away from an examination of her proposals, my opponent, and Bill Grant, should review Colorado economics 101 and the policy issues facing our state.

REP. STEVE KING Grand Junction

Democratic process protected with new rules

On Sept. 24, Diane Schwenke, president of the Grand Junction Chamber of Commerce, published a very wordy letter about how elections for unions to organize and represent workers will be conducted under the new National Mediation Board rule. It appears to me that working men and women will finally be afforded the same democratic process as the rest of our democratic society.

It is how we elect our city, state and federal representatives, senators and the president of these United States. If the chamber is a democratic organization it is probably how she got her position. As the saying goes, “What’s good for the goose is good for the gander.”

AL AMIRAULT

Fruita

New rules simply ensure fair union elections

A recent letter in The Daily Sentinel set forth a grievous mischaracterization of the National Mediation Board’s new rule for union elections in the aviation and rail industries.

Let’s get the facts straight: The board’s new rule simply allows the majority of votes from voting employees to determine elections. The original process assumed voter intent by counting non-voters as “No” votes. That’s analogous to counting all non-voters as votes for the incumbent in a presidential election.

So there’s no question that the rule change made major strides toward ensuring fair and democratic elections for aviation and rail workers, regardless of their stance on unions. Senate Republicans wasted no time trying to undo that progress for working people, and we should all be relieved that they didn’t succeed.

KIMBERLY FREEMAN BROWN

Executive Director

American Rights at Work

Washington, D.C.

Personhood Amendment deserves another ‘No’ vote

It seems as though the Personhood Amendment is back for an encore, despite the fact that the voters of Colorado soundly defeated this amendment two years ago. This amendment is virtually the same. Only two words were changed, most likely to obfuscate the issue. You know what they say about people who keep repeating the same action and expecting a different outcome.

The amendment is designed to stop abortions. It goes far beyond that and may even be unconstitutional, since it does not provide for preserving the mother’s life.

In addition, since it defines a human being as existing from the beginning of biological development, there are a number of currently popular contraceptive methods being used that could be outlawed, even though there is no proof that these methods interrupt a pregnancy.

Other consequences include the possibility that a pregnant woman who causes a traffic accident that results in the loss of her fetus could be charged with manslaughter or, even worse, murder. Anyone observing a pregnant woman smoking or drinking alcoholic beverages would have to report her for child abuse as well as any pregnant woman who fails to get prenatal care. The Department of Human Services will go nuts just trying to keep up with all of the reports.

I urge readers to do just what they did last time this amendment was presented and vote “No” on Amendment 62, the personhood amendment.

PAUL B. JONES M.D.

Grand Junction

Gary Harmon’s columns will be missed by readers

No more Gary Harmon column? Say it isn’t so. Whether or not you appreciate what he writes, it’s always topical and poignant.

I flip-flopped over the years, agreeing and disagreeing with him, thinking of him as a genius with uncanny insight when we were in synch, or a moron who probably has to relearn the job after a long weekend when I thought he was off the mark. But always, I knew he wrote a good, solid column that I was eager to read.

Juxtapose his musings with the frivolity of the Annie Payne column for which the paper gives three-quarters of a page once a week, and you have to wonder who is making decisions about what the community wants to read. On one hand, you have columns written with talent and intelligence; on the other, fluff and nonsense about baskets, drapes, envy for a bigger house and feng shui.

Best of luck to Gary Harmon. I, for one, will miss his work.

RALPH HAMBLIN

Grand Junction



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