Thursday letters: RMR, Nancy Pelosi, and U.S. better than Russia

RMR, you are no responsible mining company

In a debate during the 1988 Vice-Presidential campaign, Lloyd Benson famously said to Dan Quayle: “Senator, I knew Jack Kennedy and Senator, you are no Jack Kennedy.” In borrowing this thought from Lloyd Benson, I can state: “RMR, I know responsible mining companies, and RMR, you are no responsible mining company.” I am of course alluding to the preposterous and ill-conceived permit amendment proposal that Rocky Mountain Resources (RMR) has presented to the BLM in an effort to expand mining operations to a production rate of five-million tons per year.

As full disclosure, I worked in the mining industry for 45 years in the capacities of a mining engineer and a mine manager. During 25 of those years I held primary responsibility for ensuring that my operations maintained full compliance with all Federal, State and County laws, regulations and permitting issues. Successfully I can assure you.
When I scrutinize what RMR is proposing, how many holes can I shoot in their fatally flawed plan?

To name only a few there are proposals to circumvent the Mining Law of 1872, an impossible plan for a massive haulage and loadout rate, lack of foresight for a dust control water source, a vague quantitative concept of actual ore reserves justifying their 20-year plan, dubious financial ability for capital and operational expenditure, a dubious marketing strategy, etc. I could go on and on. One of the most glaring inconsiderations in their strategy seems to be the notion that local residents are a motley crew of rubes and that they can bludgeon their way through the process with political power. Well, this doesn’t seem to be the case when we look at all the organized opposition to the plan. Contrary to what RMR pleads in the lawsuit with Garfield County, I submit that the County does and will have jurisdiction and enforcement rights — particularly in operations that occur outside of the BLM permit boundary.

During my career, I worked with many honest and hard-working people in the mining industry who wanted to do the right thing. I also came to know many professional and dedicated people who worked in various governmental agencies who wanted to do the right thing, including BLM employees. So I view RMR’s proposal and their accompanying tactics as a blight on the reputation of the otherwise responsible mining industry that I was proud to work in for. RMR has already demonstrated a “bad actor” behavior in compliance and there is no reason to believe that they would reform in the future. I don’t include RMR in the industry group that I came to know during my career.

Stephen A.Onorofskie
M.Sc. Mining Engineering
Glenwood Springs

Nancy Pelosi owes American people an apology

Dear Nancy Pelosi, you are the most disrespectful Speaker of the House I have ever seen! On National television you tore up the President’s speech within earshot of our leader and within the view of our Vice President, and the American people. You tore up the speech that touts this country as the greatest country in the world. You tore up the speech that reported how well minorities are doing in this thriving economy, how opioid addiction is on the decline, how illegal border crossings are down, how wages are rising for Americans, jobs being created, factories being built, etc.

But… the worst part was you tore up the speech that spoke of a 100-year-old African American combat pilot, his great grandson who wishes to be an astronaut, a baby who was born so prematurely she only weighed one pound, yet she is happy and healthy, albeit a little sleepy. You tore up the speech that recognized our Border Patrol who work tirelessly to keep us safe, to the rightful President of Venezuela who is trying to make a better country for his people, for a man who beat drug addiction and started his own company, to the wife and son who lost their father serving his country, to the mother and father who lost their daughter to an Islamic butcher, and to a wife with two small children whose father was serving his fourth deployment in Afghanistan, yet totally surprised his family by returning safely home to them. You tore up the speech that awarded Rush Limbaugh the Congressional Medal of Freedom, the highest award possible for a civilian, who is also battling stage 4 lung cancer. You tore up the speech that recognized the brother who lost his brother to an illegal immigrant who was wrongfully released from custody because of a sanctuary state law and then decided to go on a killing spree. You tore up the speech who recognized the fourth grader being raised by a single mom in Philadelphia who wants a better life for her daughter.

Nancy Pelosi, these are the Americans you’re supposed to represent! These are the people who make America great! You owe us all an apology!

Karen Wagner

Despite our problems we are a better country than Russia

We are dealing with a very sad chapter in our country’s history. The defenders of the president made a mockery of the trial, which was supposed to be conducted by the Senate according to the U.S. Constitution.

They refused to allow witnesses and documents to be presented.
When a member of the president’s defense team says: “Whatever a president does to win re-election is for the public good,” we should be shocked and disgusted.

Perhaps all the defenders should leave America and move to Russia. In that country it is normal for a politician to do whatever he wants to do to stay in power – lie, attack opponents (at times even kill them).

Despite our problems we are a better people and country than that!

Nancy Hess,
Glenwood Springs

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