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Letters to the Editor

I am truly grateful to get a letter published and usually pleased when a response results because I know that someone must have read it. I respect opposing views and expect criticism and disagreement.

I do not, however, appreciate the manner in which Ron Kokish misrepresented and twisted the meaning of my Aug. 12 letter, in which I merely expressed my personal views of the Olympic events that I watched. Since he obviously saw things differently, his rather vindictive letter has prompted this good-natured response.

In his Aug. 15 letter, Mr. Kokish labels me as “naive, idyllic and simplistic.” He is entitled to his opinion. That’s what this Opinion page is for.



But my comments were in no way intended to be a generalization, as he implied. Nor was there any intent on my part to be prejudicial. I merely, if “naively,” described what I “idyllically” enjoyed and, then, “simplistically” commented accordingly.

Mr. Kokish’s letter was certainly comprehensive in listing the Olympic’s negative aspects, including cheating, revolting, doping and illegality; along with various forms of disqualification such as attempting to lose, racist comments, and false claims; as well as dishonorable behavior including a boxer refusing to shake hands, a swimmer using illegal dolphin kicks and, apparently, even gaining fame and fortune through their achievements.



I simply (there’s that word again) didn’t let negativity ruin the Olympics any more than I allow it ruin my life. If by accentuating the positive I offended Mr. Kokish, that’s his problem.

Based upon the generally rave reviews, I am led to believe that the 2012 Olympics were successful, in spite of isolated incidents that represented an extremely low percentage when you consider the multitude of individual and team events with the astronomical number of athletes participating in heats and other qualifying methods.

As I look forward to the Winter Olympics, my glass is half full. Let the games begin and I intend to exercise tolerance for what a much maligned politician once described as “nattering nabobs of negativism.”

Richard Doran

Parachute

I was certainly gratified to read that Marguerite Salazar, regional director of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, has the time, in her official capacity, to send a letter to the Post Independent, published Aug. 13.

Thank goodness we now know that numerous health care services and products are “free” as mandated by the Affordable Care Act. Since it is apparent that the federal government can now create “free” goods and services by fiat, I would like to also request a free Cadillac, some steak and lobster and a case of Moet Chandon. Just leave it at my front door.

The reality is that the Affordable Care Act will dump millions of citizens on to Medicaid and will cost trillions of dollars.

Does anyone believe that this will be free? Anyone who works and pays taxes will be paying for it – and for their own health care as well.

And guess who will be making our health care decisions for us? Faceless bureaucrats at the Department of Health and Human Services whose time is occupied by sending Democrat National Committee talking points to distant newspapers.

Michael K. Stahl, M.D.

Carbondale

I don’t know about others, but I’m sick of a presidential campaign filled with toxic attack ads, half truths, glittering generalities, meaningless sound bites, a tsunami of misinformation and an amazing absence of substance.

Our election system works well only when voters are truly informed. We need candidates to address important issues. We need to hear details about plans for dealing with those issues, how much it will cost to implement those plans, and how the associated revenues will be generated.

We have a lot going for us, and I’m not ready to move somewhere else. However, these candidates are vying for the presidency of a country that not only has significant strengths, it also has a $16 trillion debt, a stagnant economy, 12.8 million people unemployed, 46.2 million people living below the poverty level, no discernible energy policy, embarrassing education statistics, a crumbling infrastructure, and elected officials (who have never served a day in the military) willing to put our young men and women in off-budget wars, year after year, with no definition of victory, and no exit strategies.

We need someone to provide leadership that will build on our strengths, while addressing these extraordinary challenges. We do not need a mudslinger trying to prove that he is the best choice in some vacuous adolescent name-calling contest.

However, so far in this election year, our candidates are spending an obscene amount of money doing exactly that, with campaigns apparently designed to keep us in the dark while feeding us huge amounts of manure. Mushrooms can be grown that way, but not a lasting democracy.

As citizens we should be outraged, and we should be expressing that outrage in letters to the candidates, letters to party leaders, letters to our friends and relatives, letters to editors, posts on Facebook, YouTube, and any other media that will deliver the message.

If you don’t like being treated like a mushroom, write, call, tweet and blog – then do it again. Otherwise we can join Pogo in declaring that “we have met the enemy and he is us.”

John Palmer

Glenwood Springs

In response to Karen Graff’s letter of Aug. 17, I have to wonder about the limits of free speech and the editor’s policy on putting false information in print. Ms. Graff’s statement that President Obama “has been identified as a communist” is blatantly untrue.

May I suggest that in the future, letters such as this be required to contain the source of the so-called information and justification for passing it on?

Pat Girardot

Glenwood Springs

The Garfield Legacy Project has put in extensive research and groundwork resulting in a well-thought-out open lands program design for the county. The Ranchlands, Rivers and Recreation Economy Measure has predominantly taken inspiration from the successful open land programs of Routt County and Gunnison County; however, it is ultimately unique to the characteristics of Garfield County that allows for our amazing quality of life.

The Ranchlands, Rivers, and Recreation Economy Measure would provide two conservation tools. The first is the purchase of development rights in the form of conservation easements from willing landowners on all or a portion of their property. These easements help to enhance and protect valued open land assets like agriculture, water quality and quantity, wildlife habitat and natural areas. To be clear, the resolution adopted by the commissioners does not create or allow for transfer of development rights, only the purchase of development rights.

The second conservation tool is the purchase of land. A cap of 25 percent of the annual open lands budget would be allocated for land acquisition, which would allow for the creation of parks and trails and other community open land amenities, for residents of Garfield County and visiting tourists.

An open lands program for Garfield County could provide benefit to our county, help invigorate our economy and enhance our quality of life.

Please check out the Garfield Legacy Project website: http://www.garfieldlegacy.org or facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/ GarfieldLegacyProject to find out more information on the Ranchlands, Rivers, and Recreation Economy Measure which will be on the Nov. 6 election ballot.

Helen Andersen

Glenwood Springs

Mr. Meyers in his letter of Aug. 16 is accusing me of things I never said.

In my rebuttal letter that was not published because it went over the word count I agreed that noncitizens should not vote and there should be an equitable method of compiling an accurate voter registration roll.

The only thing I questioned was that 5,000 noncitizens voted in the 2010 general election. The sites I cited in my earlier letter proved that Mr. Gessler could not defend this claim.

To assert that the testimony of a politician before a committee chaired by his own party must be true is incredibly naive. If I thought Mr. Gessler’s motive was purely for accuracy I would not object, but I think his motive is to purge the voter rolls like they are doing in Florida and Pennsylvania.

The state of Pennsylvania could not come up with a single instance of in-person voter fraud to justify its new voter ID law.

If you voted in 2008 but did not vote in 2010, Mr. Gessler ordered you purged from the rolls, and you will not receive a mail-in ballot in 2012.

Edward Hall

Glenwood Springs


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