Union Democrat staff

Bad science

To the editor:

Many remain unaware that smog in China directly kills 800,000 annually, while making 22 million others very ill.

Air pollution from Japan can make folks ill in Seattle. Unfortunately, our elected officials bought the whole enchilada regarding the Air Resources Board and our state's efforts to regulate (mandate) air pollution laws. Just one look at the ARB homepage reveals the scope of its regulations. It regulates everything, with entire sections for executive orders and enforcement of rather spooky draconian laws certain to deter any real industry from initiating business in California.

Like all other state entities, self preservation and jobs take precedence over science and over prudent fiscal perceptions. ARB staffs numerous statistical experts to morph numbers that support its agenda.

With $25 billion in state debt, citizens can ill-afford elected boneheads who endorse these moronic mandates. Since we can't regulate China and India, we will crucify all those rich industrialists in California who, for the last 30 years, have fled the state to find business-conducive locales elsewhere.

If you want a job, call ARB or look elsewhere.

Dave Maloney


Caring community

To the editor:

In these hard economic times our community is facing, it makes your heart smile when generous folks appear and give of themselves. And the cheer this brings to the staff is almost as important as cheer for the client.

For example: During the second week of December, six or seven men who call themselves the Sonora Geezers brought bags and bags of toys, music CDs and art supplies for the child care program for the moms in the perinatal program. One man also left three bags of groceries.

For the last year, Charmaine Daniels has come to teach our Judicial Recovery Groups about nutrition and food preparation. She supplies the food, gets donations for supplies for the classes, donates her time and even donated a DVD player and VCR to the cause. She has been a wonderful asset in helping our group's participants make changes for healthier living. Charmaine also works with the C.H.I.P. (Coronary Health Improvement Project) program through the Seventh-day Adventist Church.

The week before Christmas, the community programs received $200 worth of Dial-A-Ride tickets from Salvation Army. The timing was a great, as we had exhausted our supply. This will enable more folks to get to much needed appointments, counseling, group sessions, etc. We are so grateful to be living in such a caring community and thankful for its generosity.

Bea Readel

Director, Tuolumne County

Behavioral Health Department


Thanks, firefighters

To the editor:

On Dec. 30, a motorhome parked on my property caught fire. It was 2 feet from my carport, with my Montero parked in it. My dog barked at 1 a.m. and woke me up. I looked out back and saw "red" everywhere. I screamed, "Fire, call 911" and my wife did just that.

I ran out and put the water on all the way and did my best to suppress the fire. The first unit was here in seven minutes from Hathaway Pines. I was in more than a panic mode. I was yelling, "more water" and the fireman was so cool. He said, "It's on the way." Once the 3-inch hose was connected to the hydrant, the I breathed easier.

I would like to say thank you to Capt. Matt O'Donnell and his crew for not letting my house burn down. My hat is off to all of you. Two gentlemen stayed all night to keep us safe, and we got some sleep. The volunteers also relit our heater, as the propane was shut off.

Thanks again Ebbetts Pass Fire.

Joe Rigsby


Lost in the wilderness

To the editor:

Richard Pombo - that's rich, all right. He lost his seat in 2006 based on his corrupt ties to imprisoned lobbyist Jack Abramoff and his extreme anti-environmental positions. And this guy thinks the 19th Congressional District might give him the nod? Scary thing is, the knuckle-draggers up here just might.

No wonder only 18 percent of Americans say they identify themselves as Republicans these days. Die-hard Repugnicans like to point at Obama's 40 percent disapproval rating, but they don't like to take note of the fact that much of that figure is made up of liberals who disprove of Obama's willingness to keep trying to get "the party of no" to compromise.

When the Republican party stops spending all its time just trying to make the Democratic party fail and actually starts working constructively to compromise with Democrats to find the solutions that best reflect the interests of most Americans, they will start to recover. They'll be lost in the political wilderness until then.

Bob Wetzel