August 22 Letters to the Editor

Posted Aug. 21, 2008, at 7:31 p.m.

Lies and politics

Why do politics have to be based on lies and distortions? We have the anti-Obama book full of distortions. Now we have the anti-Allen ad lying about his position on organizing labor unions.

Why does a candidate who talks about uniting the Democrats and Republicans allow such lies to sup-port her? Why does the Republican party, which claims to support Christian values, create so many lies? Why can’t candidates offer simple, true statements of their records and their positions for the future?

Why can’t the media accept responsibility to research and correct the lies? Finally, would the public buy more papers if they could truly trust what is printed?

Harold R. Hurlbert

Surry

• • •

Collins on Edwards

After reading the article headlined, “Collins: ‘Don’t you think he’s the father?’” (BDN, Aug. 16-17), I felt the need to write as I have had enough of the political garbage.

First, I believe that Rep. Tom Allen should be commended for taking the high road when asked about Sen. Susan Collin’s comments pertaining to John Edwards’ affair. His response of having no comment showed sound judgment, understanding and compassion. On the other hand, Sen. Collins showed just the opposite, and it is clear from her comments that she presumes Edwards is guilty until proven innocent.

It is my opinion that Sen. Collins is an embarrassment to the good state of Maine and should offer up an apology to Mr. Edwards and the people of Maine. The referenced article, in my opinion, clearly shows significant differences in the judgment and values of Sen. Collins and Rep. Allen. When it comes time to vote, hold people accountable for their actions. Let them know we need change, not the same old, same old.

Dave Kennedy

Dedham

• • •

McCain should ditch dirty politics

Somehow I had hoped this presidential campaign would be different. I was wrong. The Republicans successfully “Swift Boated” John Kerry and now they are willing to tell lies to win again. Jerome Corsi has published a book, “The Obama Nation,” full of untruths and distortions about everything from Sen. Obama’s childhood to his current political views. Instead of repudiating this scurrilous hatchet-job, far too many in the media are giving Corsi air time as though he were a credible and serious author.

I encourage Sen. John McCain to speak up and disassociate himself from Corsi, and rein in the Karl Rove smear machine — the source of the book — which is now running his campaign. Sen. McCain should give the American electorate the respect we deserve.

As Sen. Barack Obama does, Sen. McCain should discuss the issues and propose solutions to the seri-ous problems we must confront.

Katharine K. Wilkins

Ellsworth

• • •

Tire gauge math

I noted with some amusement the recent attempt by the Maine Republican Party to mock Obama’s en-ergy plan by distributing tire pressure gauges with “Obama’s Energy Plan” lettered on them. The only problem is that they forgot to check their facts.

A recent article on Time.com has the facts. Drilling in U.S. offshore areas, by President Bush’s esti-mate, would increase domestic production by 200,000 barrels per day by 2030. That represents 1 percent of our total daily consumption. So McCain’s plan would increase oil production by an amount equal to 1 percent of our total consumption and it would take 22 years. Wow, I’m underwhelmed.

Experts estimate that maintaining proper tire pressure could reduce gasoline usage by 3 percent. Transportation uses about 70 percent of our total oil consumption, so that equates to an overall reduc-tion of about 2 percent. Hmmm – 2 percent now or 1 percent in 22 years? Proper maintenance — engine tune-ups, etc. — could reduce gasoline usage by another 4 percent, which equates to an overall reduction of another 3 percent. Hmmm – 5 percent now or 1 percent in 22 years?

But why would the Republican Party mislead you? Well, consider that additional offshore drilling would increase Big Oil’s profits, but conservation would definitely decrease Big Oil’s profits. Well, it is all in fun anyway. If you got one of the tire gauges – use it.

But, if you fall for the Republican’s misleading humor then the real joke is on you.

Mike Lane

Rockland

• • •

Cutting taxes, energy costs

We can cut the state income tax rate significantly and help Maine citizens permanently weatherize and efficiently heat their homes. It starts with our governor, Legislature and ordinary people identifying wasted tax dollars. The office of Program Evaluation and Government Accountability needs to work seven days a week and 24 hours a day to identify unnecessary programs and positions: they can find salaried administrators in Augusta who are not working hard enough to improve the state and lower taxes.

We must permanently cut state and municipal energy costs. The governor must immediately dispatch people to find out where heat is escaping in every publicly funded building and seal them up tight. We can better utilize the ASPIRE program to locate and train people on welfare to eliminate leaks in build-ings, insulate hot water pipes and install insulation to keep the expensive heat in the buildings. We will train people on welfare to be successful in the workforce while we save money on oil.

For a reasonable price we can purchase outdoor wood boilers with steam turbines to supply public buildings with heat and electricity during fall, winter and spring months. The fuel can be softwood blow downs and wood that, when removed, actually helps the forest grow quicker. Maine has the technology and renewable resources to inexpensively supply heat and electricity to our public buildings. Shifting more tax payer money to oil countries is irresponsible.

Jonathan Walden

Surry

• • •

Digital TV an improvement?

For months now, we have been warned about the upcoming digital TV conversion and the loss of the analog signal in February 2009. I have been trying to watch the Olympics these past two weeks on my brand new HDTV and the all-too-frequent loss of the digital signal has resulted in watching the Olympics on the analog station instead.

I can’t imagine how frustrated I would have been if that analog station wasn’t available. The digital signal on the CBS, ABC, and Fox networks haven’t faired much better. Of course, the local cable com-pany blames the local affiliate and the local affiliate blames the network.

Isn’t this eerily similar to the loss of dependable service that was experienced when cell phones switched to digital service? Perhaps TV should try to do it better because I doubt that loss of program-ming will be tolerated similarly to a dropped call. As I write this, the digital feed for the Olympics has been lost for 20 minutes and has not yet returned. Oh, I can’t wait for February 2009!

Bruce Rioux

Millinocket

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