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We don’t know each other. I’m Jon-David Wells, from a Dallas/Ft. Worth radio talk show called “The Wells Report.” My show deals with the biggest issues of the day; as they effect We, the (Regular) People. We who pay for everything and simply aren’t getting our money’s worth. The other day, I became aware of the interaction between one of your neighbors, and Sheriff Lou Vallario. He has come under fire for his decision to send a tactical squad to the home of Tom Shiflett. I spoke with both Tom and the sheriff, and allowed as both men had strong and well-reasoned arguments. In my interview with Sheriff Vallario, I found him to be forthcoming in answering tough questions. Both before and during the interview, I made it clear that we disagreed in the manner in which this event was handled. And, without rancor of any kind, the sheriff allowed that reasonable people could indeed disagree with his decision. To be honest, I was impressed. He could have taken my call from Dallas/Ft. Worth and simply blown it off. “Run for the tall grass,” as we say on the show when someone ducks us. But he called it the way he saw it, explained his principles, and stood behind his decision. If only Dallas/Ft. Worth law enforcement officials were so willing to face us on matters of public safety. Would I vote for his re-election, were I a Glenwood Springs citizen? Probably. While I think a component of “bullying” may exist here, at this point, an honest man with guts is hard to find. Throwing one away over something like this would seem as heavy-handed as the SWAT response itself. All in all, I think you’ve got a good man there.Jon-David WellsThe Wells Report, TalkRadio 570 KLIF Dallas

My friendship with the Shifletts dates back to the 1970s. Those who know Tom well can testify that yes, he can be opinionated, obstinate, stubborn and, occasionally, angry. By the same token, he is a man with incredible gifts of insight, loyalty, and faithfulness, just to name a few. He is not given to irrational assumptions of situations, but will very methodically and thoughtfully assess them for the best course of action. Never have I known two people with more love and nurturing concern for their children than Tom and Tina Shiflett. I personally know they would never put their child in jeopardy; to assume that “professionals” are more qualified to assess the situation is preposterous. If I were stranded and incapacitated on a desert island and given one request, I would only ask to be there with the Shifletts, as I know I would survive in their capable hands.The last I heard, being a “constitutionalist” is not against the law.We need more people with guts and convictions in this day to stand up and be counted, like Tom and Tina Shiflett.Carol Graves BeitlerLas Vegas

As I was outside shoveling the seven inches of snow on my front walks the other day, I watched the city snow plows advancing up and down Colorado Avenue. As they did this, a berm accumulated in the middle of the road. Not soon after, the people with their big-boy-toy vehicles drove up and down the middle of the berm, scattering the snow all across the road. The city snow plows then returned to do the job again and this was repeated several times during the day. One solution might be that the city could charge a $10 fee for the big-boy-toy rides to offset the cost of replowing the roads. Or the people driving these vehicles could try to remember what they learned in science class. They might realize that as the road is scraped it is not only safer to drive on, but since black attracts heat, the snow would melt and run to the sides of the road, where it can then wash down the storm drains as it is designed to do. But then there is another problem. Residents need to shovel the snow away from the gutters, allowing the water to drain correctly so that in a month or two the city will not have to bring out big Caterpillar trackers and graders to unplug the ice dams that accumulate because the residents haven’t done their part. Don’t they understand that all this extra machinery running about trying to fix the winter problems is exhausting the city’s budget? Bob DoyleGlenwood Springs



This is in response to managing editor Dale Shrull’s whining on receiving complaints about late or no delivery for the newspaper. I built my house up East Elk Creek some 27 years ago, and have had the paper delivered most of those years. Most of those days of those years, the paper was waiting for me early in the morning to peruse with my coffee before heading to work. Nowadays, if I’m lucky, I get to read it at the dinner table. If it’s not late, or not delivered at all, it’s tossed out in the snow instead of the nice box that’s conveniently located on the roadway, only to be buried by the snowplow. I expect to have to rent a Dumpster this spring to dispose of all the lost papers and the myriad of yellow books that were thrown out on every driveway, gulch, wide spot, and game trail up and down our road. The bottom line is: I’m paying for delivery of a free newspaper, and I’m not getting the service I’ve come to expect. I am not about to just live with the incompetence. Dale has many excuses leaning heavily on bad driving conditions. The last time I checked, driving on snowy roads in the winter was nothing new, and it didn’t seem to bother the delivery of my paper in the past. There aren’t many of us who don’t have to drive on these same roads to get to work. Dale wants us to pipe down and put up with poor service until he can get his “act” (for lack of a better word) together. I’m close to doing so by canceling my delivery, as it doesn’t make sense to purchase the paper when I can read it for free at the café in Silt much earlier than I can at my home. The next time you’re placing one of those expensive ads, remember my dollar that’s missing because Dale would rather make excuses than find a remedy for the problem. Joe GavitoNew Castle

Also addressed Dear Mr. Bush,I want to commend you on the stance you have taken regarding the creation of a Palestinian state during your recent trip to the Middle East. I agree with your comment, “There should be an end to the occupation that began in 1967. The agreement must establish Palestine as a homeland for the Palestinian people, just as Israel is a homeland for the Jewish people. These negotiations must ensure that Israel has secure, recognized, and defensible borders. And they must ensure that the state of Palestine is viable, contiguous, sovereign, and independent.”I also appreciated your observation that “Swiss cheese isn’t going to work when it comes to the outline of a state,” referring to the fact that illegal Israeli settlements have chopped up the West Bank into small noncontiguous areas that prevent the creation of a viable Palestinian state. I support your call for Israel to end settlement expansion and remove unauthorized outposts and for Palestinians to dismantle terrorist infrastructure.I have long argued the point you made that “The establishment of the state of Palestine is long overdue. The Palestinian people deserve it. And it will enhance the stability of the region, and it will contribute to the security of the people of Israel.”I have not agreed with you on many issues, Mr. President, but I am in total agreement and support of your endeavor to develop peace between Israel and Palestine and bring about the establishment of a Palestinian state.Thank you for your efforts, and I wish you great success.Sue GrayCarbondale



Welcome to winter driving in the Rockies. To those of you who don’t know (or don’t care), here are some things to know.Clean off all windows, not just the driver’s-side windshield. This way you can see others around you.Headlights are to be on when it snows. This is so not only for you to be seen, but it is the law, too.Check side streets, mostly on hills. Just because they have a stop sign doesn’t mean cars can stop on ice. I almost got hit because people aren’t paying attention to cars sliding into the roads.Back off away from the car in front of you. What happens when you’re tailgating and the car in front of you starts to slide? Also, if you do hit someone, you cannot take off for any reason. If you do hit someone, just hope the other driver didn’t do everything by the book, then all you get is a slap on the hand.Pedestrians need to pay attention, too. This means you can’t walk in the road. A vehicle may slide into you or your kids.Darrin FixGlenwood Springs

An independent media disseminating accurate information is the most important ingredient of any democracy. The incredible value to private interests to slant information in a favorable light is an overwhelming force that must be resisted if there is to be any hope for a free world.John HoffmannCarbondale


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