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Letters to the Editor for August 5, 2017


Public lands

To the Editor:

Apparently Rep. McClintock thinks that he knows better than their constituents.

McClintock signed a letter from the Congressional Western Caucus to Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke recommending shrinking four (Carrizo Plain, Mojave Trails, Sand to Snow, and Giant Sequoia) and eliminating one (Berryess Snow Mountain) of our California national monuments.

These beautiful places are among 27 national monuments that the Trump administration is “reviewing.” They’re all at risk of being sold off for things like mining, logging or oil and gas drilling. Their natural and cultural treasures would be lost forever.

McClintock is remarkably out of touch with his constituents. Voters are not asking for industrial development in our national monuments.

In fact, public opinion polls consistently show that the public wants national monuments and other public lands to be protected for future generations.

It’s time that McClintock actually listened to the people who put him into office. These spectacular public lands belong to everyone, and we want them to stay that way.

Andrew Clemo

Sonora

Obstructionism vs. Democrats vs. democracy

To the Editor:

It is becoming more and more evident that some who identify as Democrats are really in opposition to our Democratic Republic and all that has been accomplished for personal freedoms over the more than 200 years of U.S. history.

Yes , there are two sides to the coin in a two-party system, but the outright obstruction and lies being perpetrated is more than opposition, it is a form of demagoguery: A person who tries to stir up the people by appealing to emotion, prejudice, etc. in order to achieve a selfish end.

It is pretty sad when you find such, in a recent letter the editor, whereby the writer attempts to use the Holy Scriptures to indicate that God hates our duly elected President.

This letter is being written on an historic day, which commemorates the 1953 treaty signing at Panmunjom, Korea. This was a time when most of our citizenry was in concert of purpose; Freedom from a repressive regime. As a U.S. Navy veteran, I am proud of the time spent patrolling the Yellow Sea and the other coastal waters of that nation.

Democracy is the victim when obstructionism becomes the activity of the day. Our nation becomes great when freedom is the aim. It is time to stop creating “smoke and mirror” charges and get down to the real purposes the President is trying to accomplish! He is not deterred.

Wake up Democrats, You are being led down a dangerous path by those who would destroy you with their evil.

Jim Dresbach

Cedar Ridge

Congressman ‘Do Nothing’

To the Editor:

Well, good ol’ Congressman Tom “do nothing” McClintock shows, once again, his willful ignorance when faced with actual facts. He compounds his obstinate stupidity by refusing to even listen to someone who knows what she’s talking about. Cal Fire Madera-Mariposa-Merced Unit Chief Nancy Koerperich recently took him on a tour of the Mariposa Detwiler fire. She told him several times that, to reduce the threat of such catastrophic fires, Cal Fire and cooperating agencies need to do more controlled burns to reduce fuel loads. She pointed out there’s practical problems, one of which is district air pollution regulations — but that the nearby National Parks are able to time their controlled burns to be in compliance.

McClintock responds that what’s needed is to do more logging — cluelessly ignoring the obvious fact that this and Sonora fires have been in grass-oak woodland and chaparral. Logging wouldn’t have any effect whatsoever. Koerperich further points out that it was fuel reduction from a previous wildfire that stopped the fire’s advance on part of the east perimeter. McClintock’s reaction: not even crickets. Just a vacuous, knee-jerk repetition of the need for more logging.

However much his supporters cheer his stands on social issues, he is useless for the day-to-day practical problems of our foothill communities. It’s long past time for this career politician to go.

George Durkee

Twain Harte

Symbolism over substance

To the Editor:

Three Letters to the Editor have been published challenging TCEDA’s (Tuolumne County Economic Development Authority) claims of creating new jobs and businesses, running a transformative Innovation Lab and delivering measurable economic value to the local community.

A quick review — June 20 editorial: Skilled Workers; July 4: Private Sector Jobs. July 18: Innovation Lab. What was the response? One day after the first editorial letter, they temporarily shut down the website then gave us more of the same with a new redesign — colorful tourist types photos, videos and more promises. After the second editorial, they shut down the website again to give us, well you guessed it, more of the same. After the third one, they shut down the website yet again, but with no new news or updates about the Innovation Lab. Not one word about past performances; not one sentence or description supporting their public claims about delivering over “$10 million in local economic development” to the community or how they plan to achieve “$60 million of future developments for the City of Sonora.” Do you see a pattern?

When someone is challenged publicly about past performances that potentially affect every citizen in this county, shutting down the website multiple times does not promote confidence in either the authority or the elected officials who oversee this organization.

This is the fourth, and hopefully last, editorial calling out TCEDA’s claim that they continue to create, develop and achieve “measurable” economic development for the community in both a transparent and competent manner. So, a simple request. Since the opening of the Innovation Lab, inform us on what has been accomplished that justifies the amount of time and money being spent on primarily salary and retirement benefits to date. Please, no more photo ops or symbolism. Just the facts.

Ken Perkins

Sonora

A Conservative’s thoughts about President Trump

To the Editor:

To all my friends who were, and still are, supporters of Donald Trump, I urge you to read some of the words of Arizona Senator Jeff Flake, a Republican whose voting record is as conservative as anyone in Congress today.

“When we excuse on our side what we attack on the other, then we are hypocrites,” he writes. “If we do that as a practice, then we are corrupt. If we continually accept this conduct as elected officials, then perhaps we shouldn’t be elected officials.

“We have given in to the politics of anger — the belief that riling up the base can make up for failed attempts to broaden the electorate. These are the spasms of a dying party. Anger and resentment and blaming groups of people for our problems might work politically in the short term, but it’s a dangerous impulse in a pluralistic society, and we know from history that it’s an impulse that, once acted upon, never ends well.”

Flake criticizes the administration for introducing the notion of “alternative facts.” He explains why it is “tremendously damaging” every time Trump dismisses an accurate newspaper story that he simply does not like as “fake news. “We’re only as good as our information, and if we lose our sense of objective truth, we lose everything,” he cautions.

“Any honest accounting of how we got to this new day has to reckon with Newt [Gingrich], whose talent for politics exceeded his interest in governing.”

“It was we conservatives who, upon Obama’s election, stated that our No. 1 priority was not advancing a conservative policy agenda but making Obama a one-term president—the corollary to this binary thinking being that his failure would be our success…”

Like has fellow Arizonan John McCain, Flake’s courage has drawn fire from the Right. “Sad.”

Gary Sipperley

Twain Harte