Letters to the Editor

Letter: Highly suspect contrarian source

August 28, 2015 — 

I’m not sure if anyone read or took the “Climate change minions” letter seriously, but as a practicing skeptic I couldn’t resist looking into this “contrarian source of information.” Few activities are as fun as challenging the assumptions of the status quo.

Unfortunately, the promoted website is just an effort to push products on conspiracy theorists and paranoia enthusiasts. The mentioned petition of “17,000 scientists” testifying that human industry is helping the environment, and efforts to reduce our impact actually harms it, is highly suspect (forgive me if that was too obvious).

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Letter: Dubious petition

August 28, 2015 — 

James Buerger’s letter of Aug. 23 challenging the science of climate change shows that one can find support on the Internet for any belief. He cites a petition to the U.S. government signed by some 17,000 “scientists” urging the U.S. to reject the Kyoto global warming agreement. This petition denies that greenhouse gases are warming the Earth and that human activities are contributing to global warming.

It turns out that the petition (“Oregon Petition on Global Warming’) was sponsored by the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine (OISM) that is headed by Arthur Robinson and located in Cave Junction, Oregon (of all places). Robinson was chairman of the Oregon Republican Party in 2013, and ran, unsuccessfully, for the U.S. House of Representatives three times and was defeated by Peter DeFazio.

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Readers Say Thanks

August 27, 2015 — 

Blues & BBQ a smokin’ success

Holy smokes! Thanks to Mark Hardin II and Carbondale Beer Works this year’s KDNK Blues & BBQ was extraordinary. Mark got his formidable friends together to cook local savory meats from local sources.

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Letter: Rebalancing development

August 27, 2015 — 

There are two schools of thought on development. It is necessary and inevitable; it sucks and it should stop.

If you are in the first camp you are focused on short-term personal financial gain. If you are in the second camp you are focused on the quality of the existing surroundings and are willing to accept a lower financial “standard of living.”

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Letter: More handouts = more bums

August 26, 2015 — 

After reading Dawn Dexter’s guest column in the Aug. 16 PI , all I can say is bless her naive, misguided social generosity. She means well. I’m sure. However the reality is that “we” don’t want to give free homes to hobos. Most people work hard to earn their homes and I don’t think “we” want to give away homes to every stumblebum who lacks one.

German theologian Reinhold Neubuhr said, “No one has the right to be unselfish with other peoples’ interests.” If Glenwood wants to remain known as a family friendly tourist destination instead of Hobo Heaven where bums will eventually eclipse tourists, then it needs to do a couple of things.

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Letter: Why the upscale firehouses?

August 26, 2015 — 

Concerning the upcoming vote on a mill levy increase for the Carbondale fire district. Do these districts take into consideration economic downturns or budget shortfalls when they design and build these monolith firehouses I see around the valley? They are all super custom and have an appearance of an estate in Aspen.

Just look around, from New Castle to Aspen. The cost of these buildings is in the millions. Is this type of architecture really necessary? A more simple structure would suffice. I put this in the same context as the monolith hospitals they build in our small valley. Take away the flat screen TVs and the granite countertops and lower my bill.

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Readers Say Thanks

August 25, 2015 — 

Willey Coyote 5K has another great year

We would like to thank everyone who came out to support the Willey Coyote 5K Run. Many volunteers donated their time and energy to make this event possible. Some have volunteered both years, and we couldn’t do it without you. It was a great day for a run and over 100 people registered. The racers and walkers were ready, with many in costume, to have fun and support a great cause. All of the proceeds from the race go to the Bob Willey Scholarship Fund. The scholarship is given to a graduating senior from the Roaring Fork School District who exemplifies the spirit and enthusiasm that Bob was known for. It is a wonderful way for us to carry on his legacy.

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Letter: Animas spill just a preview

August 25, 2015 — 

I have been following the Animas River mine spill of toxic metal laden waters with some interest. I view it as merely a preview of coming attractions. Colorado alone still has some 20,000 such abandoned mines and many of those will contain more nasty surprises. All for the taxpayers to cleanup at their expense. A legacy of the 1872 mining law which gave mining companies free rein to do as they pleased. The expense will never be returned to those who made it. Besides, they have already spent the money.

I suppose the bright side of the current mess is that it gave the Southwest Indian Tribes a distraction from dealing with Sen. John McCain’s continuing efforts to steal sacred Indian lands and sell them to international corporations for exploitation. Check on this with the Western Shoshone and the Navajo. (The Navajo just ran McCain off their lands.) And, of course, it gave the crowd of Republican candidates something else to blame on Obama, so they didn’t have to complain about The Donald.

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Letter: A bad deal with Iran

August 25, 2015 — 

Since the Post Independent recently published two anti-Israel/pro-Iran letters back to back, I felt it appropriate to respond. Doug Holdread’s Aug. 11 letter expresses that Congressmen Scott Tipton and Ken Buck do not represent their rural districts since they support Israel and oppose the Iran nuclear deal. Thereby the defense industry will receive billions of tax dollars to build bombs. Doug believes the deal will be positive for Iran, washing away its rogue status and raising its standing within the world community.

Since its creation in 1979, The Islamic Republic of Iran has had two supreme leaders, Ruhollah Khomeini, and today’s, Ali Khamenei. Their title, “supreme leader” is absolute. Iran has had six presidents, functioning as executives obedient to the directives of their supreme leader. Iran’s supreme leader, and nearly all state officials and many citizens have seared into their own consciousness a national mantra; “Death to Israel, Death to America.” The multitude have repeated these six words millions of times over the past 36 years.

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Letter: Slow down in the canyon

August 24, 2015 — 

I am compelled to respond to Cheryl Cain’s letter to the editor. I’m glad to know I’m not the only one concerned with the dividing cones that are knocked over in the construction zone of the canyon. It seems ludicrous to me that drivers aren’t more careful. I do know this construction zone is better than it was in previous years, thanks to CDOT workers’ voices and the federal government requiring this small regulation from the contractors conducting the extensive work in the canyon.

However, if you wish to put blame anywhere, I would look first at the original design of the interstate through the canyon. Notice there is nowhere for emergency vehicles, stalled vehicles or snowplows to safely pull over. Please. Notice. Notice the numerous, blind curves that conceal traffic, accidents and emergency vehicles from oncoming traffic. Please. Notice.

The next culprit is speed. Notice the speed of vehicles traveling through the canyon, even in construction zones. Notice the road workers putting their lives in danger as cars and large trucks speed past them, knocking cones down. Please. Notice.

I am married to a CDOT worker who takes great pride in his work and that particular stretch of road. When the road is damaged or someone is hurt on “his road,” he takes it personally. For you to heartlessly say he or any of his fellow CDOT works did not mourn the loss of lives in the canyon is false. My husband mourned with the rest of the Glenwood community, as did his fellow workers. What you don’t notice is the dedication of these men and women who work on this dangerous stretch of road, throughout the year, no matter the weather, so that truckers can make their deliveries, tourists can see either side of the canyon and loved ones can travel to and from their homes.

Please remove the blame from these hardworking people who put safety first so that they, too, can go home to their loved ones. Notice the real culprits are design, speed and distracted drivers. Please, everyone, slow down.

Charmaine Boudreaux

Glenwood Springs

Letter: Tesla for the future

August 24, 2015 — 

The best new Aspen status symbol is certainly not a brand new internal combustion engine Audi or Range Rover, which just prove that you are willing to commit to 12 years of fossil fuel consumption while the oceans continue to get more acidic and more permafrost thaws.

The best new status symbol is a brand new Tesla model S. It shows that you care about the environment and believe in a sustainable future for your grandchildren. And the best of everything now includes high-end hotels offering Tesla livery services.

Tom Mooney

Aspen

Letter: Iran can't be trusted

August 23, 2015 — 

Mr. Holdread’s letter to the Post Independent is most disturbing in that he seems to have a real trust for the Islamic leaders. Is this Socratic irony, merely irony or does Mr. Holdread really believe that the Obama/Kerrey Iran deal will provide the world with any measure of security?

I cannot tell you which country to fear the most between China, Russia or Iran, but my eighth-grade grandson knows that Iran is already waging and backing wars in many countries. Mr. Holdread, do you recall that Iran held our embassy hostage for 444 days, that they are killing innocent Christians and nonbelievers in their religion?

Iran has displayed hatred of Israel and the United States. Don’t you believe that they were involved with 9/11 and other attacks on our soil? Do you think that the billions of dollars that will be released in favor of Iran will not be used for the destruction of cities and human lives? Did you know that even Obama thinks that Iran cannot be trusted?

“By the people and for the people” — almost 70 percent of U.S. citizens are against the Iran agreement. Therefore, the president and Congress should also be against it.

Hopefully Tipton and Buck are at least equally concerned with the well-being of all the U.S. citizens as they are with “representing the people of their rural districts.” Additionally, you maintain that these two congressmen have the interests of “foreign lobbies,” which would have to be Russia and China since they are the two countries that would gain from this Iran “deal.” As for Israel, they have had the big bomb, and even though Iran has continued to maintain that they will eliminate Israel, our Jewish friends have declined to destroy Iran.

So, why has Israel held back from protecting itself from this hateful Islamic country? You, Mr. Holdread, have some very strange notions. Or perhaps you are just jesting. I hope so.

Dick Fitzgerald

Carbondale

Letter: RFTA bike fee unfair

August 23, 2015 — 

It has come to my attention that seniors don’t ride RFTA free if they have a bike. Really? Why?

When I proceeded to put my bike on, was told $2 even though I am 66 years old, a senior, and seniors ride free. The bus trip I planned that day would have cost me $8 for just my bike since I would have had to take four different buses.

So instead I put my $5 lunch money in my gas tank in my beast of a car, skipped lunch at some local business and added just a little more unnecessary pollution to the valley and one more vehicle to the already-congested roadways of Glenwood.

I called RFTA, asked them why I am charged the extra $2 even though I’m a senior and was given many different theories: “Maybe bike racks are really expensive and need lots of maintenance”; “It’s for extra help and delay the bus driver has to give me” (FYI, nobody loaded my bike or took it off or even got out of the bus for this 66-year-old). I have continued to ask this question. My answer from the top: “Because we can.”

So another money-groveling attempt to bleed an already anemic public out of another buck for no apparent reason.

So at the risk of giving RFTA more diabolical surcharge ideas, what’s next, surcharge for wheelchairs or crutches or strollers — or maybe 50 cents per shopping bag and $50 for your suitcase. It worked for airlines.

Needless to say, this doesn’t encourage bus use over personal vehicle, which I thought was part of their purpose. And my dear RFTA, if you want to exploit the public for extra fee revenue and surcharges, forget the elderly, we are already broke.

Louwanna Clark

Glenwood Springs

Letter: Climate change minions

August 22, 2015 — 

It is fitting that the movie “Minions” was one of the more successful releases of the summer. That is how our country operates in current times.

The minions are out, your newspaper included, marching to the drumbeat out of the Obama White House about climate change being the most serious threat facing our nation, its economy, its security and its health.

And then the clinching line: “This isn’t opinion. It’s fact.”

That is blatantly false from a man who has made a career out of telling falsehoods.

What it is is horsefeathers.

Rather than digressing and discussing the real threats that face the nation, all of them enhanced by the fact that this administration has no adult supervision, I would like to recommend to interested persons a contrarian source of information regarding climate that just seems to repeatedly get buried by the media with its own agenda.

It is a website, www.epi-us.com, where you can read a document, Freedom 21, which discusses the 17,000 scientists in the U.S. who have signed the following petition:

“We urge the United States government to reject the global warming agreement that was written in Kyoto, Japan, in December 1997, and any other similar proposals. The proposed limits on greenhouse gases would harm the environment, hinder the advance of science and technology, and damage the health and welfare of mankind.

“There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gases is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the Earth’s climate. Moreover, there is substantial scientific evidence that increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide produce many beneficial effects upon the natural plant and animal environments of the Earth.”

These aren’t celebrities or activists, these are scientists.

Please check out this website to balance your factual intake.

Letter: Drug dealing is for real

August 21, 2015 — 

In September of 2014 I was unlawfully evicted from a west GWS basement apartment and suddenly this 66-year-old man from California was homeless.

That fact clarified, this letter is in response to Mitch Mulhall’s Aug. 14 and Doug Meyers’ Aug. 19 letters to the PI. In Mulhall’s and Meyers’ mindset, because GWS Police Chief Terry Wilson is a good old boy and because he grew up here, it’s OK to give a pass to what I consider Wilson’s incompetence in running the GWS police force. I adamantly disagree with that assessment and because meth is on our streets and homeless addicts and drunks are passed out in the doors of GWS businesses; this public controversy demands the immediate attention of the civil body politic of GWS. In other words, the people of GWS must decide who is correct, Mulhall and Meyers, or Carl L. McWilliams.

Mitch Mulhall believes my firsthand observations (as a University of California-trained sociologist) of the competing pot dealers and the meth trade dealers and the increase of used heroin needles left on our sidewalks and the local teenager activity in the alley behind the Methodist Church during “soup” is a “passing fantasy.” After that, Doug Meyers believes I’m “stupid” for wanting police officers on mountain bikes patrolling the streets of GWS. Therefore I make the following statement to the civil body politic of GWS:

Hidden within the homeless population of GWS, there are basically two competing types of street drug dealers doing business: 1) exclusively pot and 2) meth and heroin. These street dealers hide in plain sight, some showering Monday-Friday at Feed My Sheep. All or most of them eat Monday-Friday at “soup” with take-out meals, so as to not be that conspicuous.

In July of this year I witnessed something horrific: Three clean cut, 14- or 15-year-old GWS boys arrived on skateboards at the library and then walked behind the Methodist Church 15 minutes before “soup” opened at 5 p.m. These three GWS children then bought pot from one of the local dealers, but sitting next to this pot dealer was a meth dealer. Think about it, parents of GWS teenagers: Three of your clean-cut teenagers were buying street pot, and less than 5 feet away meth and heroin was also for sale.

If that is a “passing fantasy” and I am “stupid” for wanting officers on mountain bikes, then Police Chief Terry Wilson, this city isn’t big enough for both of us.

Letter: Oil's down, gas is up — why?

August 20, 2015 — 

I am confused about gasoline prices and the market value of oil, and maybe someone can answer this question. Earlier this week, oil was trading at $43 a barrel. Lowest price in many years. The news also said we could see oil at $20 to $30 a barrel in the future.

Last weekend in Glenwood, gasoline went up 13 cents a gallon overnight to $3 a gallon. Is this the oil companies one last chance to screw us with the onset of the Labor Day holiday?

Letter: Aspen traffic reality

August 20, 2015 — 

As the summer season comes to a close, the traffic backup at the entrance will diminish, and Aspen will once again forget that it has a problem. Then, in December, we start the whole cycle over again.

A few weeks ago The Aspen Times featured an 1,100-word article on the supposed “traffic problem” without once mentioning that the actual problem is inadequate highway capacity at the entrance to town. One could easily think it was a case of journalistic malpractice.

The Aspen Daily News then provided its own version of the situation — which was no better in terms of providing useful information. In order to come up with a really scary sounding statistic, the Daily News used the average traffic volume for one month — July. July has for years been the busiest traffic month of the year. The scary number reported was 27,555 vehicle trips at the two-lane section of Main Street at the S-curves.

The Colorado Department of Transportation reports Annual Average Daily Traffic (AADT) counts on its website. In other words, CDOT figures include the really slow traffic months like April and May along with the higher traffic months. Despite this softening of the scariness, the state reports that there is a daily average of 28,000 vehicle trips on Main Street at the Garmisch Street intersection.

For traffic alarmists, the AADT at Garmisch should be much scarier than the peak number at the S-curves — except that nobody has ever seen a traffic jam originating at this four lane section of Main Street.

The reason nobody has ever seen a traffic jam originating at Garmisch and Main is because Aspen has a perfectly ordinary and totally manageable amount of traffic wherever there are four lanes to handle it. There are tens of thousands of four-lane streets, boulevards and highways all over the world that handle the same traffic volumes as those found in Aspen — without the least difficulty.

The collusion between the print media and the local political establishment to manipulate this issue is as inexplicable as it is obvious.

David Bach recently hosted me on his “Bach Talk” interview program on KNFO. You can listen to our discussion from the link provided on the home page of entrancesolution.com. If you spend a half hour listening, you literally won’t recognize what you’re hearing. It’s called reality.

Letter: Don't ruin it for service dogs

August 19, 2015 — 

A very good friend of mine has need of a service dog to help him through his daily life. This dog has a number of outstanding skills acquired through years of rigorous training. Under federal law this dog has the right to remain with his human partner wherever he may go. Without him the gentleman in question would not be able to lead a mostly independent life.

That being said, many are ruining this luxury for him; people who claim their dog is a service dog when in fact it is not, or otherwise people with emotional support dogs or therapy dogs (which are not required to be professionally trained) who insist they bring their dog to lunch. If your dog is not a certified, card-carrying service dog, then it is not protected under federal or state laws in public places where otherwise animals are prohibited.

I love dogs, I would love to take one with me wherever I go, but there are laws that govern such things. So the next time you decide to take your uncertified dog into a public place that prohibits pets, especially one where it is a health code violation, please remember you are not only putting that business owner at risk just so you could have Toodles out to brunch, but you may be endangering those with serious or life-threatening allergies.

If you have any more questions concerning your dog’s rights and freedoms or the differences between service animals and emotional support or therapy animals, you can visit a number of websites including http://www.ada.gov/qasrvc.htm, http://pleasedontpetme.com, http://www.ada.gov/service_animals_2010.htm, https://adata.org/publication/service-animals-booklet as well as your local government offices. Please refrain from taking advantage of local businesses or exploiting such an amazing benefit put in place for those who truly need it.

Letter: Embrace panhandling

August 19, 2015 — 

My solution to the panhandling problem is to legalize it as a business enterprise. These people are in fact there to sell you something: an opportunity to pity someone. I know because I’ve been there and done that. Hitchhiked around with the sign-flying crowd. It’s a perverse form of busking. Playing the sad-faced clown.

Granted, there are some who engage in this form of employment because they are broken down to a point where they are unemployable in any other job. Especially unskilled labor. Most do it because its a quick buck and tax free, so turning it into a legitimate business opportunity with licensing would eliminate much of the problem.

Allow a few days for those passing through, then inform squatters we require buskers to be licensed.

This would also organize the bridge entertainers into a better product serving the community. In fact the buskers themselves could be constructed into a nonprofit and create regular performance opportunities for musicians, much as they’ve done in Seattle’s Pike Street Market decades ago. They could access those whose panhandling is actually the only job they are able to do and create a community-sanctioned oasis for these people who are presently being put out of business by the drifters.

Embrace it as a given. Make it into an asset rather than grumble about it year after year; summer season after summer season. Go to any metropolitan area and you’ll see panhandling is here to stay. Unless we treat it as legitimate micro-business.

Readers Say Thanks

August 18, 2015 — 

Silt HeyDay appreciates help

The Silt Heyday Committee would like to thank all the contributors that helped to make the 46th Silt HeyDay and Silt HeyDay Car Show a huge success. This includes all those who donated financial support, door prizes and services. Because of you, we were able to provide a great home town celebration during a centennial year.

We want to give special thanks to our Centennial Sponsors Alpine Bank-New Castle, Alpine Bank-Rifle and the town of Silt; our Grand Sponsors Columbine Ford, Native American Crane Service Inc. and Stampfel Construction; our Award Sponsors American Furniture Warehouse, Berthod Motors, Best Plumbing & Heating Services Inc., K&K Lumber and Vaughan Construction; and our Entry Gate Sponsors ANB Bank, Grand River Health and Master Petroleum; as well as all the other sponsors that provided us with the financial support to defray our expenses and gift certificates that were used as prizes for events. We also want to thank all the newspapers, radio and TV stations that publicized the event.

We wish to thank all the people that donated their time for Silt HeyDay, including our Hobble 5K race participants, the parade entrants, our parade judges; our Grand Marshal- Bill Smith; Local VFW, American Legion and Silt’s own Cub Scout Pack 220 Flag Bearers; our Booth providers; our car show participants and workers; our horseshoe tournament participants; our Farm Olympic participants; local support including the Silt Police and the security volunteers, Silt Historical Society friends in the kitchen, the town of Silt employees, and all of the others that helped as we celebrated “100 years of Community.”

Thanks to our bands Timbermill Music, The Scones and Swerve.

If we forgot anyone it is not intentional, and we thank you, too, it was difficult to keep track of all the work going on.

Without all of this support, we could not have done it.

Justin Brintnall, John Brogan, Levy Burris, Chris Classen, Sylvia MacLaughlin, Tracy Masias, Sheila McIntyre, Kim Price, Kathy Strong and Peggy Swank

Silt Heyday Committee

Timely move for Rifle Thrift Shop

The volunteers of the Rifle Thrift Shop with the Rifle Thrift Shop board members would like to thank the Garfield County Workenders program for all of their help moving us from our previous location to our new location, 102 East Ave.

It was the help of these wonderful ladies and gentlemen that the Rifle Thrift Shop was able to move in a timely fashion. They spent an entire Saturday helping us move household items, racks of clothing and boxes of books. They also trimmed weeds and cleaned around the outside of the shop.

There are no words to express how helpful they were or how grateful we are.

Rifle Thrift Shop volunteers

Rifle Thrift Shop board members

Wildfest a group effort

Last Saturday, 300 people from throughout the community showed up for the Wildfest celebration at the Other Side Ranch in Old Snowmass. We at the Wilderness Workshop would like to extend our heartfelt thanks to the many supporters, sponsors, vendors, performers and volunteers who came together to make the day a heartwarming success. Wildfest is our annual friendraiser for all outdoor enthusiasts to take a step back and celebrate our common love of the wonderful public lands surrounding the valley.

So many people made Wildfest a success, starting with Kate McBride and the Other Side Ranch for donating a fantastic venue. Thanks to Gravity Productions for organizing the event and keeping everything running smoothly and artfully. Thank you to our sponsors and businesses in the community that made this happen: Alpine Bank, Marble Distillery, Crystal River Meats, Aspen Sotheby’s, Bristlecone Mountain Sports, Reese Henry, Roaring Fork Brewery, Michael Fuller Architects, Ken Ransford, Blazing Adventures, Sandy’s Office Supply, Carbondale Beer Works, Gran Farnum, Bonfire Coffee, Sweet Coloradough and The Aspen Times.

Thank you to the professional musicians, performers, panelists and chefs whose contributions made Wildfest a day to remember. And of course thank you to all the wildland lovers out there who came to show their support and enjoy a day in the sun. We’ll see you next year!

Doing Fine Things for rodeo

The Western Slope Rodeo Royalty Committee wishes to extend a gracious thank-you for the four years of Fine Things being the major sponsor of this event for youths. Their generous donations of the flower centerpieces and jewelry has been much appreciated. This year’s clinic is Oct. 3 at the Grand Valley Recreation Center in Battlement Mesa. Visit the website at http://westernsloperodeoroyalty.vpweb.com to learn more about the program and Miss Rodeo Colorado 2016, Madelaine Mills, as the guest speaker.

Patty Hackman

Avon

Letter: Wilson's leadership is best

August 18, 2015 — 

Recently a letter was written concerning the local Police Chief Wilson and his police force. Obviously the writer does not understand the basic principles of the law in this country.

Bobby Joe Honeycutt admitted that he destroyed the flower pots and was arrested. He had a bond set, and he was able to bond out of jail. The Glenwood PD has no control over the courts. It is the judges who let clowns like Honeycutt walk out of jail with a slap on the wrist time after time, making the job of the chief of police and his staff even harder. Chief Wilson and his force are not judge, jury and executioners.

The letter writer also stated that the Glenwood PD should place officers on mountain bikes in front of Eagles and Doc Holliday’s and Feed My Sheep and the basement of the Methodist Church. Well, I am not sure what the other taxpayers in Glenwood would think about this. I suppose some of them may also like 24-hour police protection in place, but to be to be brutally honest, that is just stupid.

Also, in this country, most people have to follow the rules of law, the Obama administration and Hillary are of course the exception, but to have an officer stationed inside the locations that the writer has claimed to be drug-dealing locations would require at least an invitation from the folks who run these places and most likely a search warrant to search for drugs on the premises.

In closing, I have known Chief Wilson since he was in high school. His integrity and leadership are second to none. One example of this, when he was a young patrol office, he stopped a high school friend for DUI. Did he look the other way? No, he did his job, knowing that he could not just let his friend go, he took an oath to enforce the law and that is what he did. I and many others feel the city of Glenwood could not have a better leader for the PD.

Doug Meyers

Glenwood Springs

Letter: Walk the walk — or at least bike

August 18, 2015 — 

Often I hear manifestations on how to clean the environment, usually from people who get in their cars and drive away. How about using public transport? How about walking and or bicycling? What about carpooling to town or to markets or shows and even to work?

As someone said, “if you talk the talk, walk the walk.” Laugh and smile a lot, it is very good for you.

Paddy Flynn

Glenwood Springs

Letter: Drug court works

August 17, 2015 — 

Thank you, Post Independent for Kelli Rollin’s story on the Garfield County Drug Court and the strength and resilience of its graduates and attendees. Engaging in hundreds of hours of treatment over multiple years takes commitment and dedication to recovery and transformation, and we at Mind Springs Health, like Judge Neiley, are extremely proud of those who participate in it, and gratified to contribute to the success of the program.

We would also like to recognize and thank all the partners in Drug Court: Garfield County Sheriff’s Department, 9th Judicial District Probation, the District Attorney’s Office, and of course Judge Neiley. Working together, resident lives are being changed for the better every day. We live in a caring community and it shows.

Jackie Skramstad

Regional director, Mind Springs Health

Letter: Solution to problems

August 17, 2015 — 

Bring back Dan, the cop on the street.

Bob Cutter

Glenwood Springs

Letter: Why Trump will quit race

August 17, 2015 — 

I predict that Donald Trump will withdraw from the presidential race sooner than later.

Whatever you think of the man, it is clear his presidency would not be business/politics as usual, and the powers that be will never risk that.

If he is, in fact, worth $10 billion, he also has a great deal of commercial debt. Now that it appears he might not be self-destructing, the international banksters who run the country — and the world — will put the squeeze on him sufficient to jeopardize his empire and perhaps even his personal fortune. “The Donald” may be a high roller, but he is not in their league by a long shot.

And he will go relatively quietly, believe it or not. I can’t begin to imagine the excuse that will come out of his mouth but, whatever else, it will be self-preserving.

Bob Richardson

Denver

Readers Say Thanks

August 16, 2015 — 

River Clean Up a success because of sponsors and volunteers

On July 11, The Glenwood Springs River Commission held its annual River Clean Up. It was a great day celebrating the beautiful setting along the rivers of Glenwood Springs. There were several other large events along the river that day, but many of you turned out to help clean up.

Volunteers collected numerous bags of trash from Grizzly Creek to South Canyon. Many families came together and enjoyed the live music afterwards. The River Commission has held this event for 15 years, and we are continually impressed with all the hard work the volunteers contribute.

The commission would like to sincerely thank all those that made this wonderful, productive day possible. Thank you to Moe’s for the great set up at the park. Thank you to Coke for providing drinks and to the Glenwood Canyon Brew Pub for the cold beer. Thank you to The Pullman restaurant for the prize donation. We also want to thank American National Bank, Alpine Bank, Alpine Quest Sports, the Colorado River District, and Trout Unlimited for their donations. A special thank-you goes out to Jeff Rice and his band, Just Joan; they donated their time and awesome entertainment after a morning of clean up.

This event would not be possible without the volunteers. Thank you to all of you, and thank you to the other members of the River Commission for all your help organizing and making the day a huge success for the rivers of our beautiful city.

Sincerely,

Patrick Murphy

Glenwood Springs River Commission

Letter: Protecting quality of life is a public dialogue

August 16, 2015 — 

Members of Grand Valley Citizens Alliance, the Battlement Concerned Citizens and Western Colorado Congress believe that a recent letter from a Piceance Creek Action Council agent misrepresented a recent public meeting with Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission officials.

A person is entitled to their opinions, but to set the record straight, our very public conversation with the COGCC was about managing impacts from large-scale, multi-well development near homes, schools and public areas, specifically in Battlement Mesa. How is wanting to protecting one’s health, property and quality of life “radical,” we ask.

We also want to correct a mischaracterization about our members. People involved with our organizations reflect the general attitudes of most Coloradans. In fact, the 2015 State of the Rockies poll by Colorado College found that 63 percent of Coloradans live here because of the clean air, water and environment. Our organizations’ collective purpose is to protect that kind of quality of life in Western Colorado.

In our public conversation with the COGCC, using the current proposal to drill within Battlement Mesa neighborhoods as an example, we supported giving the COGCC director “more tools” in determining the criteria of siting multi-well oil and gas development in residential neighborhoods.

We also advocated for increased air and water quality mitigation when drilling and fracking in a residential area. In addition, we thought impacted landowners should have an equal voice before the COGCC. Most importantly, since multi-well production activities can continue for years, requiring a five-year comprehensive drilling plan within residential communities makes sense. We echoed our support of this action presented earlier by local government representatives at their meeting with COGCC.

Oil and gas operators, spokespersons, supporters and organizations have had several audiences with the COGCC during this scoping process on the task force recommendations, including a local meeting with Western Slope COGA in Rifle. Opposite of Ms. Couey’s criticism, we want to thank COGCC Director Matt Lepore and other state officials for being engaged with all stakeholders affected by oil and gas development and listening to our input.

Leslie Robinson

Grand Valley Citizens Alliance, Rifle

Letter: Glenwood needs convention center

August 15, 2015 — 

The No. 1 reason to have a convention/performing arts center is: Economics.

Glenwood Springs has a reputation that invites tourists. We have the Hot Springs Pool, the Adventure Park, the new Iron Mountain Hot Springs, Sunlight Ski Area and a vibrant, walkable dining and shopping experience.

There is not a space available in Glenwood that can accommodate more than a few hundred people. I have heard organizations lament “where can we hold this event?” The Colorado Hotel, the library, the BOCC, a church or the high school, these are the ones coming to mind. All these venues present their own challenges for size, scheduling, location and cost. Concerts in the park could be concerts year around. We also need a place to shelter people if we have a local disaster.

Glenwood has always relied on sales tax and lodging tax to run the city. Think how much more revenue could be garnered if we also had a way to max out our rooms and fill up our eateries. Convention business could fill in our shoulder seasons, as conventions and events can be held any time of the year. We would get attendance from Carbondale to Rifle to Edwards and beyond.

With the new tax revenue we might be able to pay for bridges and streets and the convention center. We might even be able to support a low-income housing project or two. We may need to expand our lodging and tourism services to accommodate the demand; private enterprise would recognize an opportunity.

We have a generous philanthropic element to our valley. I am sure this would be seen as a cultural and artistic opportunity. I believe we have the organizational ability to greatly subsidize this venture. There may even be a lodging chain that would partner or pay for naming rights.

But you say, what about using taxes to create and support this endeavor? We surely will need to reauthorize a current bond issue and consider such things as a modest real estate transfer tax, FMLA grants, Department Of Local Affairs grants, State Tourism grants. We may even need to solicit surrounding communities for support.

Join in, Glenwood Springs, we can make this happen.

A world class resort town needs and deserves a convention/performing arts center.

If Rifle can do it we can do it. Their Ute is getting rave reviews.

Letter: Out of the Valley and 'Into the Woods'

August 14, 2015 — 

Many say that community theater is best at reaching the average citizen and family. Certainly, when the cast features a collection of some of our valley’s most talented young adults, it can be magical.

This week Carbondale’s SoL Theatre concludes its production of “Into the Woods,” the fantasy musical featuring the music and lyrics of Stephen Sondheim and book by James Lapine. Fairy tales collide when Cinderella, Rapunzel, Jack and the Beanstalk and Little Red Riding Hood are tied together by a baker and his wife and their quest to begin a family.

We’ve had the fortune to witness these young adults work hard and for long hours learning how to develop their characters, not just on stage but off stage as well. Also impressive is the team behind the curtain — director Dani Grace Kopf, set and costume designers, the sound and light crew — which is made up mostly of parents, siblings, neighbors, and friends. It’s a true community production, and it’s electrifying.

Come see what the all fuss is about.

Letter: Tax-and-spend 'conservative'

August 14, 2015 — 

Regarding your column on John Kasich: I find Mr. Kasich as an individual with some extremely radical viewpoints such as invoking God to justify increasing forced taxpayer support of Medicaid expansion.

Be that as it may, can we finally lay to rest that the federal budget was balanced in the 1990s? The federal budget was never balanced. If you do not believe me, look at the CBO numbers regarding national debt. It went up every single year. The only iffy year is 2000.

John Kasich bragging about “balancing the budget” is a bunch of hooey.

And by the way John, did you address out-of-control entitlement spending? How about some sort of reasonable review of defense spending? Hell, the Russkies only spend $80 billion a year and they seem to be doing all right. Or actually funding Social Security and Medicare? Or offering an alternative? Not bloody likely.

Kasich is a tax-and-spend “conservative.” There really are few classifications that are more dangerous. The only way that I would vote for Kasich is if he were running against Hills. As George Steinbrenner once said: “One is a born liar, the other is convicted.” Or at least her husband was.

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