On a recent trip to Costa Rica, a Delta Airlines pilot who had just finished his flight to came over to where I was sitting and shook my hand and thanked me for my service in World War II. (I was wearing my WWII veterans cap at the time).
Then, while in Atlanta waiting for a flight to San Francisco, a young lady came over and asked if she could give me a card. It read in part, “I am not certain as how to express my gratitude for all you have done to secure my freedom. Please accept this simple card as a small token of my appreciation.” My five hour flight was much more enjoyable as I read this card over and over again.
Three days later, as I was leaving the DMV office in Sonora, a car passed, then backed up and a gracious lady said “My nine-year-old daughter wants to thank you for serving our country.” The little girl did so.
Then the lady said “I wish to add my thanks also.” If I had not been in a wheelchair I would have jumped up and down for joy.
Please bear in mind these were complete strangers to me and in three different parts of the world.
God bless America and Americans.
Mr. Torchia’s assertion that Rush Limbaugh has become the “Leader of the Republican Party” differs from what I heard as a smear campaign by the left to convince the American people that he was the party’s leader.
I am sure Mr. Torchia believes Limbaugh wants to set policy for the Republican party. However, I believe Limbaugh believes in conservative values, believes those are the values that the country supports, and that the Republican party would do well to promote them. That would not be “setting policy” as much as a citizen’s right to express an opinion — something the left seems to believe should be stopped.
It is apparent Mr. Torchia believes he heard Limbaugh say he wants America to fail. What I heard is that he wants America and all Americans to prosper. What he does not want is this administration to succeed, if its policies will lead us deeper into a European socialist state and away from a capitalist country based on hard work, equal opportunity and the Constitution — the same constitution that guarantees the right of dissent without the fear of being charged with sedition.
One thing is certain: As taxes continue to increase and the national debt continues to explode under this administration, Mr. Torchia and I will have two entirely different opinions as to why.
There are currently six “food safety” bills in Congress: HR 759, HR 814, HR 875, HR 1332, S 425, and S 510. All these bills suffer from a one-size-fits-all approach. They would regulate small farms the same as mass-production, industrialized operations. But small sustainable farms are fundamentally different from factory farms, and should not be regulated the same way. Doing so will drive small farmers out of business, as they cannot perform all the paperwork and testing that large factory farms should be required to do. In addition, small, local farms are not the source of food safety problems.
These bills will deal a huge blow to small farmers, farmers markets, “buy local,” and organic farming. We all need to get involved to try to stop these bills by calling our representatives in Congress to protest them and ask that they be thrown out and new bills be introduced that do not regulate small farms (small farms are already locally regulated and that seems to work well).
For example, add a clause like “No provision of this act shall be deemed to apply (a) to any home, home-business, small farm (including organic or natural) agricultural activity, social club, church, school or other local organization, (b) to any family farm or ranch, or (c) to any natural or organic food product, including dietary supplements.”
There is quite a lot of discussion of these bills on the Internet, for example, there is an analysis of HR 875 by the Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund.
The announced closure of Sierra Pacific Industries in Sonora was blindsiding for the majority of us. My husband has been employed by the mill for more than 35 years, and he knows no other way of life. At 53, he is not old enough to draw retirement, and unfortunately is a bit too old to be picked first as a new job applicant anywhere else.
I would like to take this time to thank Red Emerson for keeping the mill open as long as he has. I know there were environmental laws and tighter Forest Service regulations. Our thoughts and prayers go out to everyone employed at SPI and their families, and the rest of the community that will be affected by the closure.
Ken and Lisa Main
The Union Democrat is now online in a Replica E-edition form and publishes Tuesday through Saturday. E-Edition or Print Plus subscribers have full access.
If you are not a current subscriber, subscribe today for immediate access. Circulation: 209-533-3614
Weekly Arts and entertainment guide for Calaveras and Tuolumne counties