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Coastal Voices: Panning conservative ideology

I began to read Dale Bohling’s Coastal Voices piece of Sept. 29 with the expectation of a cogent argument from the ultra-conservative sector of the Republican party.

His response to a previous correspondent’s opinion began reasonably. Unfortunately, it descended into the usual argument to which we have become accustomed, namely that the current president is responsible for all the problems of the modern world, including immigration, narcotics and foreign policy. Mr. Bohling attempts once again to resurrect the “birther” argument against President Obama.

He fails to realize that he is beating a bare patch of ground where only three years ago there lay a dead horse. There’s just no evidence whatever that will satisfy the uncompromising and authoritarian conservative. The social conservative would have us return to the 1950s, when conformity and “togetherness” were expected of everyone, the all-but-official state religion was Christianity, and we knew exactly who our enemies were.

Our View: In Klamath, time to move past dispute

It’s strange how sometimes people who are striving for the same result can end up at loggerheads.

Look at downtown Crescent City, where lately business owners and operators have been embroiled in a debate over whether to dissolve the Business Improvement District. No doubt every party involved wants the city’s core area to thrive, but sometimes that objective has been overshadowed by the debate over BID.

Twenty miles to the south is another example. It’s hard to imagine an enterprise more likely to receive widespread community support than the Klamath Fire Protection District. After all, in a remote area such as this, the district is likely to provide the first response to almost any emergency, from a fire to a heart attack.

Editor's Note: Next week: bigger, better

There will only be three of them, but as a whole the newspapers produced next week under the banner of the Del Norte Triplicate will be better than the five editions of The Daily Triplicate you got this week.

Better, because each issue will contain more of our stock and trade: local news, features and photos. You’ll get two sections every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday, and next week there’ll be a couple of additional special sections as well.

I don’t want to spoil all the surprises, but I do want to whet your appetite with a brief mention of some of the changes:

Coastal Voices: Can it get more grim?

Lois Munson’s letter of Sept.20, “Conservatives, history warns us time you want is grim,” was a shot of cold reality. In this portrait of the current political landscape the writer paints the Democratic Party as being progressive and multi-focused on an unfolding utopia of “what needs to be done” while portraying the Republican Party and the Tea Party’s “anger” as having one goal and that is the ouster of President Obama.

While it is true that the Republican/Tea Party’s primary goal is defeating President Obama, that is far from our singular goal. Munson is correct in stating that the Tea Party wants to take control of our country back. That does not mean back to a time frame at all. It means re-establishing historical principles; drastically reducing the size and control of government over our lives, restoring private enterprise by reducing constraints on investment and excessive restrictions on capital enterprises and a drastic deconstructing of the Democrat tax machinery.

Coastal Voices: Social Security is not broken

On Aug. 14, 1935, after much debate and protest, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed Social Security legislation into law. More than 75 years later, Social Security has become one of the most successful government programs in history.

Each year, Social Security reliably pays billions in benefits to millions of beneficiaries and delivers on its promise of protecting our seniors who worked hard all their lives. Yet despite its success, some in Washington target Social Security for cheap political games.

The misinformation we are constantly bombarded with — that Social Security is going bankrupt — is wrong. The truth is that even if nothing were done to change the financing of Social Security, the program would pay 100 percent of the same benefits it is currently paying for the next 25 years. No senior is, nor will be losing a dime of his or her benefits.

Coastal Voices: Whose access denied?

I found the Sept. 15 front-page article, “Access Denied: Parkland, not farmland,” by Anthony Skeens to be extremely disturbing and filled with incomplete information.

Dairy farmer Blake Alexandre is represented as a victim of the state parks by supposedly having his access rights taken away. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Until state parks terminated his grazing lease this month, Mr. Alexandre was a leasee and business partner with the state agency for the sole purpose of aiding the recovery of the Aleutian cackling goose. He was contracted by the state to manage Tolowa Dunes State Park lands adjoining his property in order to create more forage for the geese while at the same time removing pressure from the birds feeding on his pastures.

Coastal Voices: Do this in the open

Last week, the Del Norte County Board of Supervisors voted to form a new ad hoc committee to “restructure or dissolve the Del Norte Solid Waste Management Authority.”

I am concerned that the public did not get enough notice of this action before the vote was taken, so I have requested that this vote be rescheduled at our next meeting on Tuesday. This will give appropriate notice to the public and provide an opportunity for people to speak for or against this action before the vote is taken.

At the meeting last week I expressed my concern that the agenda for the meeting did not allow for the specific motion to form this new committee. The agenda simply stated,  #19. Receive, review and take possible action on the Del Norte Solid Waste Management Authority response to the Solid Waste Ad Hoc Committee report.

Editor's Note: Our ‘bias’ seems flexible

Awhile back, letter-writer Carter Swart took The Triplicate to task for what he saw as its liberal bias.

“Your newspaper consistently publishes anti-Republican (political) cartoons at a rate I’d describe at about 30-1 in favor of the Democrats,” he wrote. “The Triplicate also pushes the hoax of global warming, persistently presents the leftist opinions of liberal newspaper editorials, and offers little comfort to the one-half of your constituency that happen to be Republicans.”

On Wednesday, letter-writer Linda Ehrisman took The Triplicate to task for what she saw as its conservative bias.

“This county is not nearly as right-leaning as the casual reader of our paper would surmise,” she wrote, noting the recent front-page article about Sheriff/Tea Party leader Dean Wilson and my Aug. 20 Editor’s Note column detailing some of the results of a very unscientific Tea Party survey of people who stopped off at its booth during the county fair.

Coastal Voices: Klamath fire district slipped up

The Sept. 15 letter to the editor, “Shame on those who opposed fire assessment increase” by Al Muelhoffer, was, in my opinion, misguided and narrow-minded.

I too believe the Klamath Fire Protection District is woefully underfunded and personally voted my two parcels in support of the proposed increase.  I also believe that its handling process and communication efforts (before and since the proposed benefit assessment increase vote) has been both confusing and lacking in future budgetary specificity.

The Klamath Fire Protection District states it hasn’t asked for a benefit assessment increase for the past 21 years. Okay, but let’s be honest. Whose responsibility was that? Correct, the Klamath Fire Protection District was and is responsible.

Our View: Here we go again

There’s a new effort afoot to get rid of the Del Norte Solid Waste Management Authority, and there are a couple of important points to consider at the outset.

The first is that at least two county supervisors, Mike Sullivan and Gerry Hemmingsen, are clearly determined to dissolve the authority if they can. After all, they appointed an ad hoc committee in 2009 to study the possibility of doing just that. But the committee completed its work without recommending dissolution, so now Sullivan and Hemmingsen are looking to form a new ad hoc committee in hopes of a different result.

Sullivan was being disingenuous when he said this week: “The first ad hoc was to evaluate the authority and this second one will be to make some changes.”

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