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As a retired Army officer and Vietnam veteran, I believe a society’s warrior class assures its independence and freedoms. But I know a society’s warriors can be misused.

My first question, then, is “Who decides how a society’s warriors are used?” Our warriors swear an oath to support the Constitution of the United States, which gives the power of declaring war to Congress and the authority to manage the warriors to the president as commander in chief. Hence, elected officials determine how our warrior class is used.

My second question, however, centers on the locus of genuine power in the 21st century. That is, “Is a country’s warrior class, today, the ultimate guarantor of independence and freedom?” My current hypothesis is the answer, “No, today businesses and banks hold us in thrall.” Certainly the warrior class keeps shipping lanes, trade routes and land-based resources safe. But right now, “It’s the economy, stupid.” Only banks and businesses, with long-range planning, prudent practices and the interests of the country as a whole, can assure us national independence and freedom.



Why are we in this economic mess? Our elected officials directed the banks to play loose with lending practices, resulting in the current mortgage crisis. Our elected officials allowed businesses to put short-term interests ahead of sound planning and management (laissez faire capitalism run rampant). These practices didn’t start with the Bush presidency; they started with the Clinton administration and have been eagerly embraced by every subsequent administration, Democrat and Republican. Talk about buying votes!

If you really want to support the troops, as well as save the economy, elect officials with the intellect and courage to properly use all our resources: warriors, banks, businesses. Once you elect them, hold them accountable for their decisions.



Karl Oelke

Glenwood Springs

Addressed Ms. Gray:

I doubt you and I could ever agree on any point of Israel’s actions; however, how can you actually imply that individuals who have their own government are equally as broken and destroyed as people put into camps designed for their execution and dissolution?

I don’t doubt that the government of Israel has committed wrongs, but are you seriously going to defend the Hamas-ruled Palestinian legislature in Gaza that recently passed a bill sanctioning Islamic Sharia (religious) law as the principal plan for their society?

Under the new law to be embedded in the Gaza penal code, standard punishment includes whipping, dismemberment (mainly of the hands if convicted of theft) and execution.

This doesn’t come from a group that is acting against occupation. You do not turn against yourself when subjected to another government’s actions, you defend yourself, but Hamas isn’t just testing Israel’s government, they are now attacking their own people’s freedom. Really, your logic is fascinating.

James Blatter Rifle

I’m writing in regards to Linda Austin-Martin’s letter in the Jan. 3 Glenwood Springs Post Independent about too much anger and sarcasm in the paper. I’m assuming she’s referring to letters written by some of the overly opinionated right- and left-wingers. I so agree with her.

On the other hand, those letters back and forth can be quite entertaining. It’s like sitting in the bleachers, watching a mud-wrestling match. Many mornings I find myself laughing out loud at the spectacle. It’s a fun way to start the day.

I may be wrong, but I’m pretty sure these letter-writing zealots have no idea how funny they are. Unintentional humor can be the best.

Rande Price

Glenwood Springs

I would just like to express my feelings through this letter about the snow pileup … or lack thereof in our wonderful little ski town of Glenwood Springs.

I’m not talking about the road up to Sunlight, which I might add is in better condition than our highways have been the past few weeks.

I don’t understand why I see snowplows driving around on the ice, slush and snow with their plow up. A friend and I were driving through town on Grand and slid right through a red light. The ice is ridiculous … in town, through the roundabouts, and on the highway.

I’m sure many of you are thinking, “Well, she is driving too fast.” Well, it’s not just me. Following the flow of traffic or driving so slow it’s holding traffic up doesn’t matter, ice is ice and if you’re going to slide, so be it.

But really is it necessary to barely push the snow drifts out of the way or pile them up in the middle of the street, and then sit back and write “careless driving” tickets when people slide?

As a result of the poor road conditions I have a totaled car and a bitter atitude towards the city for not doing anything about driving conditions.

This is not nearly as much snow as we have had in previous years, so why isn’t anyone doing anything about it?

Shannon Mckenna

Rifle


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