Jan. 6 Letters to the Editor

Posted Jan. 05, 2009, at 7:15 p.m.

Snowblower safety

What are adults thinking about? Seeing the BDN’s Dec. 23 photograph of the Brewer man snowblowing after our recent storm with his 12-year-old son shoveling only a couple of feet in front of the snowblower is shocking. If that kid had slipped there is no way his father could have stopped that snowblower in time to keep his son’s feet out of those blades.

I hope the man has heard from others regarding his dangerous use of the snowblower and will make sure no one is in line with the snowblower or the blown snow in the future.

Jim Wright

Orono

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License your dog

In her Dec. 30 letter to the editor, Pat Martin wrote she was upset when it was reported that the unlicensed dogs that had killed some sheep would be returned to their owner, because they “were not a menace to the community.” Martin had reason to be upset because the truth of the matter is that every unlicensed dog, indeed, is a potential menace to us all. Unless the dog is licensed there is no way to know if it has been immunized against rabies.

Maine law states that “a dog may not be kept within the limits of the state unless the dog has been licensed .…” This is not simply an issue of raising funds to support animal welfare issues, it is an issue of public health. For some reason local officials seem unable to grasp this concept.

Peter Smith

Brooklin

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Mailbox safety

In reference to the recent tragic death of the woman in Lincoln who was struck by a truck while crossing the road on foot: It is a very dangerous situation for a person to have to cross a road to get to their mailbox. One should be able to put the mailbox on their side of the road in rural delivery areas.

Terry Walsh

Milford

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Backward editorial

The BDN’s editorial “Maine’s population woes” (Dec. 29) has it backward, because it is based on a false premise: “Steady population growth is a key component of a healthy economy.” No: Steady growth is a key component of malignant tumors.

Cheap energy and bountiful harvests promote dramatic population growth and prosperity, but it is food and energy that are responsible for high living standards. Let the resources stagnate while the population doubles and the flaw in logic becomes obvious. Multiply mouths and you compound misery.

Maine is fortunate to be “40th in the nation in population.” Plunging property values in California, Florida, Arizona and Nevada will render beaucoup baby boomers broke. Would Maine be better off if the ‘nouveau pauvre’ decided to head Down East?

Blockade the Kittery Bridge!

Jerry Metz

Addison

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The 20 percent club

The dwindling 20 percent of the country who grasp at elusive last-minute straws by clinging to their support for George W. Bush seem well represented by letter writer Randy Bacon (“Mob mentality,” Jan. 1). He inexplicably derides as “ludicrous distortions of fact” the well-documented history of the last eight years.

George Bush stands accused of 39 impeachable offenses, including torture, launching of an illegal pre-emptive war and other war crimes in violation of the Geneva Conventions, warrantless wire tapping of the phones of American citizens, unlawful detention of prisoners without charges and denial of habeas corpus. Many of the charges are felonies for which he can be prosecuted after leaving office.

He has politicized and diminished virtually every department of government by supplanting smart, skilled and experienced professionals with incompetent political hacks, shifted the burden of the costs of government from the very rich to the working poor, enabled the oil and pharmaceutical companies to rob us blind, led the economy into a disastrous tailspin and fostered a decline in the quality of the country’s air and water.

It’s hard to find any distortion of fact in that universally accepted history of the Bush administration. Thank goodness we elected Barack Obama, a man of intellect, integrity and vision, to turn the nation around and dig us out from the Bush administration’s corruption and incompetence.

Dan Lourie

Bar Harbor

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MPBN: reconsider

As a member of MPBN for 30 years and a resident of Washington County who doesn’t have access to broadband, cable, DSL or satellite transmission, the decision by MPBN to terminate radio and television in Washington County affects me directly. I can’t imagine what life will be like without access to MPBN’s quality programs that education and inform me in all of the events that now are transpiring (including emergency broadcasts).

This decision disappoints me as it reiterates the concept of there being two Maines. So, is MPBN truly MAINE Public Broadcasting, or Maine (for those who can afford) broadcasting? Will it be only for six months? I doubt it. Please reconsider your decision, David Morse, so that I won’t have to reconsider my membership.

Ted Carter

Baileyville

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Public finance fleecing

I read in the BDN that the “seed money” for Maine Clean Elections, financed with taxpayer money, is going to triple for the gubernatorial candidates seeking this funding.

With many of our families out of work without health insurance, and depending on food stamps to survive, Maine cannot afford to fund this Clean Elections Act. All candidates for the legislature and governor can apply for these funds. The race for governor annoys me the most because of the million-plus dollars they each receive from the treasury. Some of these candidates are fringe candidates, and in most cases, they do not stand a chance. Still for months we see and hear these boring campaigns and know that we are paying for it.

Several publicly financed candidates were caught not playing by the rules. In some cases the state asked for repayment of this money with no results. For the majority who play by the rules, there seems to be a lot of leeway. One candidate paid a family member more than $100,000 as a consultant, which is nice work if you can get it. Another gentleman ran for governor and lost in the primaries, then ran for the Legislature and won in the same season. I believe that both campaigns were publicly financed.

With the state forced to reduce funding for education, breakfasts for elderly in assisted living, Medicare payment for our doctors and hospitals, we can make better use of these funds.

Overall I give Gov. Baldacci high marks for his efforts in keeping the mills and businesses operating. However, it would be appreciated if more legislators would help mind the store in Augusta.

Bob Tweedie

Westfield

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