Our Readers' Views
Sunday, January 2, 2011
Community leaders to remember
The year 2010 was a year of giving thanks and a year to remember those we lost. A community is only as great as those who live in that community. What makes a great place to live is the community leaders and their unsung work to make Clark County a better place to live.
As we look into 2011, I want to speak for those who have been helped quietly by some great Clark County citizens we lost in the past year. There were many others as well. Thanks to Tom Koenninger, Dollie Lynch, Ed Firstenburg, Bill Fromhold and Mary Granger. Their tireless work will live on for many years to come.
One photo is reprieve from bad news
I am reading the news this morning on Dec. 29 and most of it is a little hard to take. Former Vancouver Police Officer Navin Sharma passed away from cancer. Local taxpayers to pay up to a million to clean up some polluted ground. New York covered up in a blizzard, etc, etc.
Then I see the advertisement that has been running lately with the picture of the smiling baby boy in his winter hat and I just smile from ear to ear. My wife liked the picture so much she cut it out to share with a friend. Thanks to whoever took that picture and thanks to the company that keeps that placing its ad in the paper.
Many benefits to Cowlitz casino
I’ve seen some letters opposing the Cowlitz Tribe casino in Clark County. Some were no doubt submitted by the same folks bemoaning the fact that much of the money being spent by Clark County citizens benefits Oregon. Of course much of this can be attributed to the fact that thousands upon thousands of our citizens are employed on the other side of the river.
The casino will bring a lot of Oregon money back across the Columbia River to Clark County. And a point I haven’t seen addressed is the amount of toll casino patrons will be paying for the new bridge (if we live long enough to see one).
It has been estimated that the construction of that new casino could result in up to 4,000 jobs and up to 3,400 jobs operating that new venue. I don’t see how anyone who has compassion for the unemployed could, in good conscience, oppose the Cowlitz Tribe’s endeavor while the state of Washington sponsors gambling and refuses to get out of the liquor business.
4-H at risk of losing good leaders
As a 4-H board member, superintendent, parent and leader, I’m writing in response to the 4-H equine program not participating in the 2011 Clark County Fair.
The 4-H board followed their policies regarding the complaints filed against the superintendent in question. After the investigation, it was decided that there was no evidence to warrant removal of the superintendent.
The Clark County Fair Board management, on the other hand, followed no procedure. 4-H wasn’t even notified or asked to investigate the allegations that in the words of board President Scott Horenstein are “petty.” So, if the issues against the superintendent are indeed “petty,” then why can’t the fair board act like adults and deal with these issues like most of us do on a daily basis instead of acting like bullies because they didn’t get their way?
Another issue is the precedent that this decision, made by Fair Manager John Morrison, will set for all the 4-H programs involved at fair. If we allow this pitiful decision to go uncontested it may change all of the 4-H projects during the fair. Who in their right mind would want to be a superintendent?
By setting this precedent all of 4-H is at risk of losing great leadership and knowledge.
Washington’s religion was clear
In response to Larry Johnson’s Dec. 26 letter, “Kyl’s sanctimony is on full display,” I don’t care how or in what fashion Johnson wants to argue with Sen. Kyl, but his misinformation on George Washington demands an immediate reply. To refer to Washington as a heathen (even if sarcastically) is dead wrong.
It’s true that Washington did not parade his religious convictions with any type of public fanfare. Nevertheless, they were always there, for any author willing to do the research.
Suggested reading is the book “The Real George Washington: The True Story of America’s Most Indispensable Man.” You will rightly conclude that his religious convictions were the bedrock foundation for this great man and that he truly was America’s most indispensable man.
Kyl’s complaint was misguided
I’m writing in regard to Larry Johnson’s Dec. 26 letter, “Kyl’s sanctimony is on full display,” which addressed Sen. Jon Kyl’s complaint that Congress having to work shortly after Christmas was an insult to Christians. Johnson pointed out that George Washington “planned his attack on the Hessian troops in Trenton on Christmas Eve, 1776, expedited the planning and logistics on Christmas Day, and soundly defeated our enemy on Dec. 26.”
Kyl’s claim is just one more effort of so many today to try to undermine the true Christian foundations of our country.
Actually, Christmas day did not become an official U.S. federal holiday until about 100 years later, in 1870.
Depression pattern is repeating
Tax rates have always been sobering and at the same time infuriating. Sobering for the hole that Congress and multiple presidents have dug us; infuriating for the blatant inequity of it all. In 1960, the top marginal tax rate was 91 percent. Criminal! 1970, 71.25 percent. 1980, 70 percent. 1989, 28 percent. God bless the California cowboy. 1993 to 2000, 39.6 percent. And then there was a Democrat in the White House.
During the Reagan years salaries for the “middle” generally increased by as much as 50 percent or more. That’s good, right? But while outsourcing was removing thousands of good-paying American jobs, dual-income families and latch-key kids also became standard. But outsourcing has been good for some people, right? Oh yeah, sure, while the middle had salary gains of 50 percent the top 1 percent had salary gains in excess of 2,000 percent. It’s easy to verify on the Internet.
In 1920 the top tax rate was 73 percent. But in 1929 it was 24 percent. And 24 percent of America’s wealth was in the hands of the top 1 percent. And that is the fact today. And then there was the Great Depression.
Do you see a pattern yet?