Comment history

Shuffling of state agencies stirs worry

The situation is much more complex than some of us portray it.

In the first place, tax payers will save little if any money by outsourcing. States which have outsourced their prisoners to other states have found that they are not saving money. Also recently private health insurers openly admitted that they could not compete with health insurance supplied by government. If this is true, why are our governments still paying the cost for private health insurance for their employees? Why are our tax dollars being funneled into the pockets of wealthy stock holders in private companies if a single national payer is cheaper?

Further, we tax payers will pay the same amount for private companies to do state work as we do for state workers to do it. The companies must make a profit so they'll bid about the same amount for services as government does, and they'll increase their profits by reducing what they pay to middle class Americans who used to work for government. Our taxes will go directly through state government into the pockets of stock holders in the form of dividends, and the wage scale for middle class American workers will be further reduced as unions are weakened and all workers are forced to work for less. I think some Americans don't realize their tax dollars will still be paying for state services, only now some of their tax dollars will go to pay dividends to wealthy Americans.

The next problem with privatizing work that state governments now do is the corruption of politicians. We all recognize in the federal government that politicians often go to work for companies they were supposed to have been regulating while in office. Both parties are guilty of this. It's obvious that the more state work that we give to private companies, the more those companies will be able to corrupt our politicians by offering them work when they lose office through elections. Private businesses who do state work are tied more closely to politicians than private companies that do not. As it is now, corporations and businesses have way too much influence over our elections and over the politicians we elect. WE MUST STOP HEADING IN THIS DIRECTION OF PRIVATIZING GOVERNMENT! This corrosion of our political system is much more dangerous in the long run to our freedom than saving a dollar here or there. And, as I pointed out, we'll pay about the same for the services the state outsources as we do now, only the money, instead of going into middle class worker's pockets will go into dividends for the rich.

May 31, 2011 at 12:33 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Alcoholics Anonymous marks 65 local years of sobriety success

A good AA can forgive hiphophunk's misrepresentation of the causes of alcoholism or alcohol abuse. The facts still aren't in on the physiological causes of alcoholism. Some research suggests that the alcoholic physiology metabolizes alcohol differently than does a non-alcoholic.

Other research suggests that people become addicted to drugs (alcohol is a drug) because their bodies do not produce, for whatever reasons—nurture or nature, the endorphins and other happy creating drugs that more normal bodies produce. When they take that first drink or toke, a potential alcoholic's life lights up in ways they've never felt before. Suddenly, they know what joy is. They've never felt it before. Of course they want to feel what other people naturally feel, so they chase that natural joyous feeling right into addiction. If you have never felt joy before and then suddenly discover it through drugs, wouldn't you continue to want to feel joy? Hiphophunk may just have a physiology that keeps him naturally high all the time. He should be grateful rather than arrogant.

Some people think that all human problems are moral weaknesses, even hiphophunk's arrogance and pride that goeth before his fall.

The most obvious thing to anyone with experience with alcoholics is that no one wakes up one morning and says, "I think I'm going to become an alcoholic and wreck my life and the lives of those foolish enough to love me." Yeah, of course, all alcoholics do that.

What usually happens is that a young man or woman is in a lot of psychic pain. They discover early on that drugs and alcohol give them some relief from that pain, and they drink for many years before they realize that the pain relief is temporary and that drug use is now creating problems for them also which doubles the pain they live in and the problems they face. Further they learn that they now crave the stuff (alcoholism has become a physiological dependency) and stopping is very difficult because of dependency. At no time has the drug abuser chosen to be dependent. It sneaks up on them.

There are other alcoholics who just like the taste of alcohol and the fellowship of seeming happy drinkers in social situations. Then one day, they also come to realize they now have some difficult social problems (angry spouses, divorces, car wrecks, financial problems) which their drinking has created for them. When they try to stop, they also discover that they are now physiologically dependent on that sneaky drug, alcohol. At no time did they choose to become alcoholic.

Hiphophunk needs to do some research and quit letting his ignorance of the subject show through. Of course people who moralize all the time are usually people who know very little about any subject so they fall back on their fearful feelings which are not informed by much knowledge.

May 30, 2011 at 10:50 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Gas tanks are draining family budgets

Wife and I drive two cars, a Toyota Echo and a Kia Rio. Total current gas bill a month between 125 and 160, depending on whether one or the other car gets by on one refill that month rather than two. Of course, when I was a kid, most kids didn't drive to high school. We took public buses, and we didn't see a lot of unnecessary trucks or SUVs eating up gas around town. Most folks got by on one car. I know, wives have to work now.

I can't say I have much sympathy for people with the bigger gas tanks and gas hogs because they and the speculators are the ones creating the expense for the rest of us. Folks, I nod a happy nod your way when I pass you on the street and you're walking like I do for short trips or riding a bike or driving a compact. You're my kinda people. Howdy!

May 28, 2011 at 4:32 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Proposed parking garages panned

Lot's of negative backward people in the Couve. If we actually caved in to them through the centuries, progress would be stalled. We'd still be living in unlit, tarp shacks with outhouses beside dirt roads. And flying? If the good lord meant us to fly, wedda been born with goldanged wings. We'd be un-vaccinated, dying of the plague, and using magnets to cure cancer. Most can't see past their noses, if that far. This is why people require leadership. They ain't got the where-with-all to get anything worthwhile done on their own. Negative, angry, poopooers, they want the Couve to be as dead as their imaginations. That's why I zip over to Portland to get the fresh air of intelligence into my lungs once in awhile.

Tack this onto any forehead where it fits.

May 26, 2011 at 3:56 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Letter: Humans can be heartless

When I read comments like these, I don't know what to think. I always wonder how those who care about ducks vote. When you look at what the Republican Tea Party in Washington State has done to the budgets that care for the house-bound, the poor, the sick and the elderly, not to mention what they're doing to the education of our children, I'm sorry, but caring about a dead duck comes about as far down my list as a humane response about life (duck or human) comes to BJ Davey. How do duck lovers vote? Seriously, I would like to know.

May 26, 2011 at 3:32 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Budget deal already faces legal threat

What's not to like? Those who need home health care are a drag on society. Those who are stupid and Democrat enough to work with sick people who need constant attention at home deserve to get taken to the cleaners. This is a man eat man evolutionary environment and the weak and sick must be left to die by the roadside. Doesn't anybody realize that the Roosevelt Era is long gone and it's time to bury it with a little Tea Party salute. Raise high your tea cups, Republicans. The Dems is as dead as those dying in their homes for lack of care.

May 26, 2011 at 3:18 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Cleanup day beautifies downtown Vancouver

Imagine? Volunteers taking up tasks that used to provide jobs for Americans? I'm not against volunteering and sometimes do myself, but when I see a handful of volunteers replacing paid jobs and relieving citizens of their responsibility to tax themselves to meet necessary civic work, specially at a time like this, I wonder what has happened to American responsibility.

May 25, 2011 at 10:06 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Letter: Is there a refund on the Rapture?

If you read the Bible closely, you'll find that in several places, Christ promises to his apostles that he'll return before they "sleep"...*sleep* in that context to mean before the apostles die. I have known but don't want, now, to take the time to find and quote you the chapters and verses, but those statements are there for the reading.

No, Jesus was not speaking about his leaving the tomb before ascending into heaven. He was promising that he'd return and bring the kingdom of God to Earth in their lifetimes. He failed to keep that promise and, since much of his story is fiction, he'll always fail to keep it. Even when the Earth burns up, falling into the Sun, in a real end time, the promise will not be fulfilled. There won't be any recognizable members of the human species on Earth to remain behind after the chosen ones from whatever species the humans have evolved into ascend into heaven.

May 25, 2011 at 9:58 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

In Our View: Resume the Cleanup

Like all of you, I only have a personal opinion formed from my genetic makeup and the effect of past experience on that genetic base. In short, I'm a product of my heritage and my experience as interpreted by and stored in the synapses of my brain.

Since I was born and raised east of the Mississippi in more crowded conditions, my youth was citified. When I came west in 1975, I discovered how landscape can modify personal vision, how important a natural environment is to the human species. I recall my first mind-expanding contacts with mountains and with the scablands of Eastern Washington. I was thrilled by what I encountered.

Not only that, I personally recovered from a history of alcohol abuse, partly aided by a daily walk in the Turnbull Wildlife and Game Refuge near Cheney, Washington. If there is any god for the human species, it would be present in the natural landscape where early men and women first became conscious of themselves and their place in the natural environment. My first contact with my own higher power came from listening to the wind in the Turnbull pine tops and their groaning, swaying trunks.

Even though I love a youthful, vibrant cityscape such as Portland's or Vancouver's, I also believe that we humans can never have enough green space in and around our living ranges. We need all we can get. It keeps our human vision alive, larger than our daily concerns with getting and keeping a living.

April 29, 2011 at 4:59 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Local business owners share concerns with Herrera Beutler

**correction last line**: "**who** are her best friends."

April 27, 2011 at 8:37 a.m. ( | suggest removal )