Letters to the Editor June 2, 2012

By Del Norte Triplicate Readers June 04, 2012 05:14 pm

District 1 needs Gitlin, who supports limited government

District 1 presents a choice for the Del Norte County Board of Supervisors between Roger Gitlin and Leslie McNamer. Roger is a real limited government conservative who understands the Constitution and that individuals are the key to a great community.

McNamer is a big-government supporter who continues to seek state and federal handouts for our community and forgets about all the strings attached.

Roger would implement fiscally responsible and job growth-encouraging policies that will help our community grow whereas McNamer is satisfied with the status quo of being a welfare community where a majority of the people are either employed by or get assistance from the government.

Roger understands that real economic freedom comes from private property and protecting our property rights by removing unnecessary land-use and zoning restrictions. McNamer has repeatedly voted to adopt policies, like the county general plan, in order to get state funds with no regard for how these new and ever-growing restrictions discourage free markets and handicap economic growth.

Roger Gitlin knows that successful individuals are what create a successful community. Roger Gitlin understands that the federal government is overreaching its constitutional limits, that economic freedom leads to individual freedom and better communities, and that we must be frugal and fiscally responsible.

Joe Albertson

Crescent City


Impressed with Triplicate’s broad, neutral race coverage


I have been really impressed with the Triplicate’s coverage on the local races for the primary. I wanted to thank the editorial staff and the reporters.

So much of today’s journalism is thinly veiled advocacy. It is so refreshing to see broad and neutral coverage.

You have asked good questions and looked past the spin of the candidates on the issues, and it truly has been very well done.

Lathe Gill

Crescent City


New citizen: Ridiculous to say newcomers not ‘local’


Last summer I became an American citizen and so this June will be my first chance to vote in an election.  I have been following the local letters to the editor with a lot of interest and what I do not understand is how Martha McClure and Leslie McNamer supporters can be so sure that only those with longtime ties to Del Norte County can adequately serve the needs of the local citizens.

First of all, it seems that a lot of locals are very unhappy with the way the county is managed and secondly, are they saying that those of us who are not fifth or sixth generation residents cannot have any positive input?

I think that Roger Gitlin, Bill Gray and Larry Childs all have great ideas and potential solutions to our very grave county problems. To say they should not be considered for public office because they aren’t “local” enough is ridiculous. It seems to me that the long-term “local” incumbents need to go and new blood needs to be brought in.

I would like to see local businesses thrive and private property owners be able to build and repair homes with encouragement, not constant over-legislation and over-burdening intrusion.

Juan Pablo Gonzalez

Crescent City


Follow McClure’s money and you’ll see support is from left


We have all heard the statement “follow the money” made famous in “All the President’s Men.” Now in local politics, being what they are, the statement is still true. Follow the money.

Martha McClure is running one very hard campaign for her seat and has taken in some very good donations. The California United Homecare Workers Union gave her $1,000. Ask yourself, why would a union that needs support on the Board of Supervisors provide so much money to one candidate?

She has also received a donation from the Building & Construction Trades Council of Humboldt and Del Norte Counties for $250.

Then there are a couple of the usual suspects: non-monetary contributions from Grant Werschkull from Smith River Alliance ( $400) and Eileen Cooper ($150); both are connected to many environmental issues.

It is simple. If your support is from the left, you can’t claim to be “moderate.” If you follow the money to unions, environmentalists and have a left social agenda, then you are a leftist.

Del Norte County needs “hope and change” for the county Board of Supervisors, starting with changing out Martha McClure.

Jerry Jared

Smith River


Incumbents display superior qualifications at meeting


The May 24 meeting of the Solid Waste Management Authority Board displayed the advantages and perils of incumbency. The meeting also gave us a clear indication of why we need to retain incumbent supervisors McNamer, McClure and Finigan.

At issue was the authority’s annual budget, requiring passage before the end of June. The marathon meeting included consideration and approval/disapproval of a) continued monitoring/ maintenance of the defunct landfill, b) amendment of the authority’s two private industry contracts — as required, based on California CPI increases, and c) raising residential, commercial, and transfer station disposal rates to cover the increased contract costs.

I was struck by the irony of the situation. Incumbent supervisors had to grapple with the technical and policy issues “in the arena,” while their challengers in the upcoming election skipped the meeting and lay in the weeds to take subsequent campaign potshots at those who had to make the hard decisions on that day.

Mr. Gitlin, who has been a highly articulate challenger of the status quo, could have appeared, as many others did, to offer informed public comment during the Board's deliberations. But no.

In their detailed questioning of staff, all but one (Councilwoman Westfall) of nine Board members present displayed a deep understanding of the regulatory and contract issues involved. There was no flamboyant rhetoric, just practical consideration. Ultimately, the Board approved the contract amendments and related rate increases — as most who have followed the issues knew they must — with only one dissenting vote (Westfall).

I wondered what the two most vociferous challengers to incumbent supervisors might have done if they were sitting on that dais, required to make a decision. Would they have had the same depth of knowledge as the incumbents? Would they have conducted themselves in a collegial fashion on a 10-member Board?

With only their speeches and advertisements to go on, it appeared to me that one might have ripped up the private sector contracts (forcing the authority into expensive binding arbitration), then stormed off to Sacramento to demand that the county be absolved of its responsibility for the landfill. Another might have stood up on a table and demanded that someone “fix it,” while offering no practical solutions. Both would have denied rate increases needed to balance the budget.

We don’t need that kind of “change.”

Bill Lonsdale

Crescent City


Money for lavish gifts for kids could be better spent


I don’t know how many of you watched a recent “20/20” episode  called “Extreme Parenting.” It solidified something I’ve felt for quite some time. Some Americans, filthy rich Americans, those who clear $500,000 per year or more, truly “waste” their money ... to a point.

One extreme parent was a fashion designer worth millions! She rewards her 14-year-old daughter for good grades in school just like I did. But, two examples of these rewards are an all-expense-paid shopping trip to Morocco, and the other a home-town shopping spree. When the spree was over the daughter had a minimum of $20,000 of new apparel and accessories.

Other extreme parents shown included a well-off couple with an 8-year-old son. Like myself, they’d provided riding toys, like the battery-operated off-road vehicles — both my boys had one. And their son mastered all the toys they’d bought for him. So to “step it up,” they had a customized monster truck built for the boy and he drives it!

In so many ways almost anyone would sigh and think, “Wouldn’t that be nice?” Then there are some who may think, in a derogatory tone, “Must be nice!” I fall into a third category and I hope I’m not alone in it. I feel that as long as the money was honestly earned, these extreme parents are proof that some folks actually achieve “the American Dream,” which is no longer attainable by most of the U.S. population these days. I am also quite the “realist” on folks like these parents.

If you can afford to spend $20,000 on a shopping spree for a 14-year-old, you should be obligated to spend the same amount on helping others. And if you can afford to spend thousands on an 8-year-old’s monster truck, you should be obligated to spend the same on helping others as well. Call it “forced philanthropy.”

I know they earned the money and I agree they should be able to do what they want with it. But when so many people in the U.S. are homeless, struggling to have food to eat three times each day, when it gets to where the less fortunate  can’t afford to buy or keep their homes and cars, feed their families for a month or more, or buy land to donate to folks to build homes on for free, then why shouldn’t they be made to help out?

Teri Markanson

Crescent City


Reflections I had on the occasion of Memorial Day


On Memorial Day, May 30, I thought of this: We are all soldiers caught between good and evil. There are angels on both sides, both for good and evil happening in our lives.

We are caught in the middle hoping for the best happening in our lives. Those who have chosen “good” have illness and death, along with evildoers. War between countries over petty differences puts evil on both sides because of what they do in war.

May this Memorial Day writing come as a blessing for good. May each assist one another for a lighter good time.

Belle Simpson

Crescent City


McClure’s liberal supporters jusitify not voting for her


The listing of Martha McClure’s supporters in Thursday's paper was like a “who’s who” of Del Norte County liberals. I noticed most all of the so-called Friends of Del Norte proudly endorse her candidacy and, in my opinion, that alone is enough to not vote for her.

I agree with Calie Martin, who wrote that being a public servant is a tough and thankless job, and I certainly do not intend for my endorsement of Bill Gray and Roger Gitlin to be a personal attack on Ms. McClure — this is purely business.

The innocuous infiltration of anti-growth and anti-development brought to the table by groups like the Friends has been accepted and promoted by Martha McClure and Leslie McNamer, damaging our county and the families that live here. We need to vote for a change on the Board of Supervisors.

Aadam Trask

Crescent City