Your Letters

Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

Silt data and dialog.

“Why data matters” is a new IBM ad about collecting and using data in order to solve worldwide problems. I wonder if Silt could use some of that.

It’s been wonderful walking door to door meeting my Silt neighbors, listening to ideas and comments from citizens. And for a retired teacher a special treat has been running into former students with great ideas. I spoke with one such student about my idea of home energy audits and energy updates here in Silt.

This summer my family signed up for an Xcel audit. It was the “blow air into the house and use the infrared camera” experience. Later my wife and I received a long (for a home built in 1999) list of energy problem areas. With the list came solutions, costs to solutions and payback scenarios.

This spurred me into action, and as I looked at my first project, improving my crawl space insulation, I discovered that it was cheaper to hire it done.

Seems to me we have a lot of this “natural resource” in every Silt household. And this former student, now a contractor himself, told me that he would love to start a green business. So homeowners can save on energy costs and perhaps encourage new business.

Other ideas from the campaigning: No grocery store, how about a co-op? It may be way more possible than some might think. With the help of a state grant we can find additional resources in order to create a natural preserve along the Colorado, one with new boat ramp and other amenities. Find and create safe ways to school? Let’s collect data on how our children move to school and then wisely enhance those paths to make them safer. And the list goes on.

Creating solutions to these issues will take data and dialog from individuals, town staff and outside sources. I have a strong belief that Silt must work together for common goals. Work smarter. Thanks to all for the experience.

Bob Shivley

Silt Trustee Candidate 2010

How would you feel if you knew water that eventually forms the Roaring Fork River was being siphoned at the source and sold for a profit by a powerful multinational company? It’s about to happen. Nestle Waters North America has recently secured rights along the Arkansas River near Buena Vista where the water will be pumped to trucks, driven to Denver and bottled under the Arrowhead brand.

What does the Arkansas River have to do with our watershed? Thanks to trans-mountain diversion tunnels at Grizzly Reservoir and at Turquoise Lake more than 1⁄3 of the water that would normally flow into the Fork from these upper watersheds is delivered instead to the Front Range.

What’s wrong with bottled water? The production of the bottles themselves is extremely toxic and consumes enough crude oil every year to run 200-thousand cars annually. The transportation of the water from the source and then from the bottling factory to the consumer creates an enormous carbon footprint. The water in the bottle is far less regulated (yes, there have been recalls) and far more expensive (by as much as 1,000 percent) than any municipal water source. There is considerable proof that the plastic leaches dangerous toxins into the water (even BPA free bottles) that is immediately consumed by everyone from children to pregnant mothers. Lastly, despite local recycling, millions of these bottles overwhelm our landfills every year. There are entire islands of floating debris in our oceans made up of nothing but discarded plastic bottles.

What can you do? Ban the bottle! Don’t buy bottled water. Use tap water at home and at restaurants. We literally have some of the best water on the planet at our fingertips. Use a reusable, refillable steel container for your daily commute or hike. Recycle. Support the Roaring Fork Conservancy, which is sponsoring an important documentary on the subject this week called “TAPPED.”

The movie will be shown at the Church at Carbondale this Tuesday, April 6, at 6:30 p.m. Call 927-1290 for more information.

Scott Bayens


OK, Basalt voters, here’s the deal:

If you want to vote for a warm, fuzzy, wishy washy, popularity-plus Town Council candidate, then do not … repeat “DO NOT” … vote for Anne Freedman on Tuesday.

If you want to vote for an experience-tested, remarkably intelligent, mature Town Council candidate on Tuesday, then DO vote for Anne Freedman.

We are lucky that Anne has, for years, made her training, knowledge, professional experience and skill in the field of community governance available to Basaltines and to other entities in the Roaring Fork Valley.

Tuesday you’ll have your chance to say, “Thanks, Anne.”

Brenda Stern


I was thrilled to see the article on the front of Saturday ‘s paper that announced Tom Dalessandri will be throwing his hat into the ring for sheriff of Garfield County. With all the drama and lack of professionalism present in the current sheriff’s office/staff, it’ll be nice, and comforting, to have a real professional for a choice come November who’s more concerned with the actual job, rather than his dating life! Go Tom! You’ve got my vote! (Now if we could just find as qualified a candidate for the District Attorney’s office!)

Lu Anne Herman


First, I want to declare that I do not belong to any tea party organization or even a specific political party.

Referring to the editorial that appeared in the Post Independent on March 30, Colbert King, a writer for the Washington Post, compared tea party participants to the people who protested a little black girl being escorted to school in the South and to other racially inspired acts by whites. Thus, he is making an attempt to regress to an entirely different era in the attitudes, policies and politics in the United States. He avoids discussion of current issues.

Later, I logged on to the net and read that the president said the tea party is composed of a “core group” that questions his U.S. citizenship and his policies of socialism.

Addressing the above in order, it is clear that King is just playing a race card and doesn’t recognize that the majority of the participants in tea party rallies are sincere people protesting the administration’s enactment of socialist programs that push entrepreneurs and workers toward dependency and discourage individual achievement and personal responsibility. Some of the radicals that have attached themselves to the tea parties are no different than the radicals that joined in as core supporters of the president’s successful run for office. Comparing the two indicates it is just a difference in their radical goals. All citizens have the right to be heard, no matter how bizarre their ideas.

With regard to the president’s statement, my comment is that the citizenship question is not worthy of consideration at this point. What is crucial is his administration’s socialist programs that push United States citizens toward governmental servitude.

Jack E. Blankenship

Battlement Mesa

Dear Representative John T. Salazar:

Thank you for acknowledging my phone call and/or e-mail which urged you to vote “no” on health care legislation. Unfortunately, you chose to go contrary to the wishes of the majority of voters in your district.

Your letter points to some good aspects of the law, but you do not have to be smarter than a fifth-grader to figure out that the alleged savings are completely phony. The cost of this law and other “economy saving” legislation will drive our nation into bankruptcy.

Did you make any attempt to control frivolous lawsuits or allow selling of health care insurance across state lines? We needed adjustments to health care law, but not the monstrosity you favored. Did you object to the disgusting “under the counter” deals being negotiated behind closed doors in order to win favorable votes? Did you get anything for Colorado out of these deals?

During all of my 85 years I have never witnessed anything approaching the deceitful actions common to this session of Congress. I will be watching for your future votes on “cap and trade” and illegal immigration, and if you vote as I think you might, I will do all I can to see an end to your service to the taxpayers of the 3rd District.

Dick Prosence


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