On Oct. 17, I boarded a crowded, noisy Southwest flight from Boise to Las Vegas. The flight was completely sold out and it was uncomfortable, so I was surprised to see Idaho Gov. Butch Otter seated in the middle of this chaos, quietly reading.
I was impressed by the governor taking a flight like that, just like any other citizen. He had no bodyguards and no entourage. Can you imagine Govs. Chris Christie or Jerry Brown traveling like that? What about Nancy Pelosi or Harry Reid or John McCain or John Boehner?
I dont know Gov. Otter, but he appears to be a regular person. I shook his hand once, and he gave me a firm handshake and looked me in the eye and said nice to meet you, Im Butch, and now I know that he flies coach, just like most others do.
I wont always agree with our governor, but knowing that he is a real human being instead of an isolated, pampered elitist certainly raises his stock with me and gives me hope that maybe he hasnt lost touch with the citizens that he represents, like 99 percent of our countrys elected officials have.
RON DILLON, Caldwell
Have you ever witnessed a true Christmas miracle? One happened in Boise recently.
One of Gods special spirits is a beautiful 10-year-old girl named Lula. She has experienced torments of raging cancer spreading throughout her body. Friends and family have given support and love, always expecting a miracle. Well, one appeared. It made Lula feel beautiful, whole and complete, just as she is.
Her favorite book, The Last Unicorn, has been a source of hope and peace. The author, Peter S. Beagle, was informed of Lulas health. He made an unscheduled trip to Boise to meet her, spend the day and enjoy the movie preview with her and the family.
Lulas pre-Christmas miracle actually happened. Angels are among us!
SHIRLEY TAYLOR, Boise
Same game, different name! I emailed House Speaker Scott Bedke asking when action would be taken against Rep. Mark Patterson. I pointed out that he had the opportunity to correct the wrongs done by former speaker Lawerence Denney in his handling of tax scofflaw Phil Hart.
What I received was the same thing I received when I complained to Denney. Nothing! Not the courtesy of an email, not a form letter from an underling, absolutely nothing! This shows me that the good old boy network is alive and well under the watchful eye of Bedke and Moyle.
To the rest of you legislators, sitting on your thumbs doing nothing, shame on you! I have come to the conclusion that the collective brainpower under the Statehouse dome wouldnt light a dim light bulb! You are all doing the people of Idaho a disservice. And no, I am not a disgruntled Democrat. I am a lifelong Republican, something I used to be proud of!
JOHN TREHARNE, Boise
Holiday cheers, jeers
Its the most wonderful time of the year ... sleigh bells, Christmas carols, president lying, holiday cheers, gifts, website failure, cookies, pies, president deceiving, Christmas tree, mistletoe, White House amalgam of free taxpayer handouts, candy canes, Santa and so much more.
Yes, I'm so-o-o-o-o-o thankful for the all the gifts Uncle Santa Sam gives out. Welfare, food stamps, free Obamacare and hundreds more from all those rich taxpayers. Too rich like grandmas pies. Its time to give thanks for all the nonworking slobs who do nothing but add to the debt, waste, fraud and pay no taxes. What a wonderful time it will be for all.
Bah humbug ... the Grinch who stole Christmas from Democrats looking to get re-elected in the midterm elections is none other than the real king in the White House regime. Vote conservative 2014.
Now go praise the Lord, sing to his greatness and have a very merry Christmas.
DANO SAVINO, Nampa
Poverty, illiteracy, crime and broken lives have a common denominator the decline in marriage. Yet Americans seem oblivious to its corrosive and destructive effects on our homes, schools and society. Two recent studies show that no government program can replace the altar of marriage and strong two-parent homes. The maddening thing is virtually no one in the nation's halls of power is addressing the problem.
A recent University of Virginia study revealed children of parents in intact marriages are more likely to graduate from college and earn high wages than children from less privileged (broken or single-parent) homes. Children raised without married parents are 82 percent more likely to live in low-income homes than those from married households. They are also much more likely to end up in trouble as teenagers, and they generally suffer more psychological and emotional problems and perform worse. In short, they do poorly in school and society. Sadly they end up living far below their potential, plagued by circumstances over which they had no control.
Given that approximately 40 percent of all American children are now born out of wedlock, the issue needs a better solution than abortion, birth control and free contraceptives.
MORRIS BASTIAN, Boise
Add the words
Your Readers View by Ronalee Linsenmann published Nov. 27 makes it clear to me that she has absolutely no idea why add the words is necessary.
Its ludicrous that she would suggest the people of the LGBT community choose an identifying mark so she will know who she may be offending. Understand this: the LGBT community is not concerned with being offended.
What they are concerned with is losing a job simply because they are believed to be a member of this community.
They are concerned with a landlord refusing to rent to them because they are believed to be a part of this community.
There is nothing in place to protect them in the way that the rest of us are already protected by the laws.
I am the mother of an intelligent, hard-working woman who does, and always has, in your words, Practice the Golden Rule and be honest. Unfortunately, her reality is very different from ours. She is not afforded the same basic protection as you and me.
As a mother, Im very offended by that.
Its time for Idaho to do the right thing and add the words.
SUSAN LINCOLN, Parma
In the Nov. 27 paper, Art Rigsby claims factual superiority supporting gay rights. He claims the religious right, as a group, distorts legitimate research he and others identify with. However, what he claims to be facts and states to be legitimate research are obviously debatable. Even if a majority of Americans now support gay marriage, so what, majorities never make something right. Name-calling Bible thumpers as religious intolerant bigots gets him nowhere. Hed be effective debunking the Bible as trustworthy by proving it changed over the centuries. If true, then revision, as Mr. Rigsby claims necessary, isnt. For the corruption of the original message makes it unreliable and impotent as an authority.
The fact is the Bible, apparently dictated by God, is a collection of 66 books by over 40 authors who act as Gods witnesses over a 1,500-year period documenting what they experienced, saw and heard, of which there are thousands of copies of the originals existing that demonstrate that the Bible has not changed significantly. The Bible as a standard teaches homosexuality is sinful, says God, and that would make him the ultimate intolerant bigot according to Mr. Rigsby. Thats a problem.
KARL MESENBRINK, Caldwell
According to a report from CNBC, Pope Francis has weighed in against capitalism, as exemplified by this quote: Some people continue to defend trickle-down theories which assume that economic growth, encouraged by a free market, will inevitably succeed in bringing about greater justice and inclusiveness in the world, he wrote, in a direct rebuttal of the theory espoused by free-market thinkers that wealth eventually benefits the whole of society. This opinion, which has never been confirmed by the facts, expresses a crude and naive trust in the goodness of those wielding economic power and in the sacralized workings of the prevailing economic system. Here, never been confirmed is open to argument.
A quote from a Gospel regarding the Eye of the Needle and from Matthew about rendering unto Caesar were offered as to what happens when someone favors money over God. Along with that is the admonition that the love of money is the root of all evil. However, consider the counterpoint of what would Jesus do about investing or working for a profit. Do check out the Parable of the Talents, which showed rewards for growing invested money as opposed to simply holding on to it.
WILLIAM R. PLACE, Boise
Rush Limbaugh, the notorious drugster and often referred to as the titular head of the Republican Party, unloads his extreme right-wing rhetoric on Pope Francis, the worldwide leader of the Roman Catholic Church.
He called Pope Francis a Marxist. Karl Marx was a German economist who published The Communist Manifesto.
Limbaughs dangerous blast of the Catholic Churchs leadership should not go without a strong response from Catholics. May I name a few notables that I respectfully ask to reject this extremism: Gov. Butch Otter, Sen. James Risch, Congressman Paul Ryan and Speaker of the House John Boehner.
Will their silence speak to where they stand regarding this assault on the Holy Father Pope Francis and the Catholic Church?
GERALD LANGAN, Caldwell