Letters to the editor: 05-28-2013

May 28, 2013 

RANDOM QUESTIONS

Exploring the world of the unknown ...

How is a $17 trillion debt some sort of recovery? How can we murder the unborn, but we can't waterboard a terrorist?

If we aren't to judge all Muslims for the acts of many of them, why is it OK to hammer gun owners everywhere for the actions of a few?

How does Obama apologize to Calderon for Mexicans being killed by American guns, after he covered Holder for running over 2,000 of them?

If Nixon was forced to resign or be impeached over a coverup at a hotel where nobody was killed, why does Obama keep getting free passes?

Why are Tea Partyers called Nazis when it's the other side generating mandates and takeovers and dictating how we need to live?

At what point, if ever, is this no longer Bush's fault?

Why can an illegal get college tuition assistance, but an American serviceman cannot?

Shouldn't foreign aid go both ways?

Why were Aurora and Newtown called the sites of home-grown terrorism, but the Muslim Major at Fort Hood was just a workplace incident?

Are Americans allowed to be offended, too, or just everybody else?

How does opposing socialism qualify one as a racist? For the record, I don't like Biden either.

MIKE BRADBURY, Mountain Home

... and things we don't understand

I am 84 and I have been through a lot, but I just can't understand why the gutless Legislature and our governor can't pass a usury bill. (Who are they protecting?) Our low-income citizens are getting ripped off with 200 to 300 percent interest. Other states have banned this practice.

I also can't understand why I can buy a smartphone that will do a hundred things for $440, but a hearing aid with far less technology costs $2,000 to $4,000 each, and the batteries last only one week when the battery in my watch lasts a year.

And why businesses pay for TV ads that are silly, with talking animals, elephants sitting on people, children you can't understand and cars that break the law, then don't even give you an address to find their places of business.

I wonder if anyone else understands these things.

JIM REED, Boise

STOLEN PAPERS

Criminal acts also steal people's time

Recently, a thieving vermin has been stealing newspapers on Waltman Lane in Meridian.

That vermin isn't particular and so steals both the Idaho Press Tribune and the Statesman from paper boxes with no thought that he is stealing from the elderly disabled and from two carriers and two publishers.

Not only does the vermin steal papers, but it also steals time from several people and from merchants who provide a product.

Because of its criminal conduct, several people are out the cost of the product and the costs of gasoline and time to redeliver the papers.

DWAYNE COPE, Meridian

RIGHT TO WORK

Idaho's law promotes personal freedoms

In George Moses' letter (May 12) where he attempts to link Idaho's Right to Work law to wages, he fails to note that the cost of living in Idaho in 2011 was 7.5 percent below the national average (using Missouri Economic Research and Information Center's data). Meanwhile, the average forced-unionism-state cost of living was 13.1 percent higher than the national average.

Once those differences are accounted for, Idaho's 2011 per capita disposable income was more than $1,200 higher than the average for forced-unionism states located in the Western U.S.

Idaho has also had one of the fastest-growing economies in America since its Right to Work law took effect in 1986.

But Right to Work is really about freedom. For our freedom of association to mean anything at all, it must include the freedom to not associate. Voluntary organizations are quintessentially American. Even AFL founder Samuel Gompers famously remarked "No lasting gain has ever come from compulsion."

Nearly eight in 10 Americans, and union members, support the principle of voluntary unionism. Idaho's right to work laws do not force unionism or prevent unionism.

JIM GRAHAM, McCall

LAND EXCHANGE

New rules can block use of favorite places

Can you make a day trip to your favorite place for relaxation and recreation -among stately trees and a clear, cool stream?

If it's on public lands, it's yours to use. No permission asked. Access to such places is threatened with the National Forest Service's use of the "land exchange."

Suppose Company X purchases private land rich with natural resources. They over-log, resulting in erosion and streams filled with silt. X now wants to sell this land to profit further.

For certain strategic value, the National Forest Service wants to acquire it. Funding is not available, so the Forest Service proposes a land exchange. Company X agrees.

The Forest Service then selects public land (perhaps your favorite place) to offer in trade for land they wish to acquire. X thus gains ownership and can sell this land for a handsome profit. You can't use it without asking anymore. You likely won't have access to it at all.

Through a land exchange, the Forest Service could trade public land you enjoy to acquire land too remote for your access. This practice is becoming increasingly common. Plans are under way for an exchange in Idaho. For further information, go to http://westernlands.org/at_issue.

REP. SHIRLEY RINGO, D-Moscow

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