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Feb. 10, 2009 Letters to the Editor

Council being prudent

All Bangorians should be proud of the good work of the Bangor Arena Committee and the City Council should seek guidance and support from each member. Further, I would welcome a joint meeting with them, maybe sometime this summer, after the city budget session.

Yet, for now, the extraordinary economic issues we are facing make our decision to revisit this issue in six to eight months a prudent one. As elected officials, it is critical that city councilors remember the “fiduciarylike” duty we have to Bangor taxpayers.

Shame on those who believe we can spend money and not worry about how we can pay it back. The city cannot print money, it can only raise property taxes.

If the University of Maine and Penobscot County and the state are willing to contribute to this project, great! It is more likely that we will partner with private sector entities and yet regardless of who partners with us, ultimately Bangor will be responsible for most of the cost.

Many times I have seen the council unduly influenced by a few dozen people. Even if a few thousand citizens want us to move forward on the new arena, many thousands more know that the economy is fragile and few would welcome a significant increase in property taxes in the next couple of years.

The delay of this study is a very minor setback and is not a change in our goal to move forward and build a new arena.

David S. Nealley


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No Hoovers needed

The right wing pundits and the Republican leadership in Congress are talking and acting like a lot of little Hoovers. The economy desperately needs a shot in the arm from the government and it needs it now. Anything done now is unlikely to bear fruit for six to eight months down the line.

However, doing nothing now is likely to make a deteriorating situation much worse six to eight months from now.

While the legislation in its current form is not perfect (I would like to see it larger and focused on laying the groundwork for major initiatives such as health care reform and transportation system restructuring), scrapping it to start from scratch will delay enactment for months and might stymie legislation all together.

It is not too much to say that any attempt by the Republicans to kill this bill will be a vote against America. One only needs to reflect on how much worse things would have been during the Depression if the Republican minority in Congress at the time had managed to thwart the actions of the Roosevelt administration in order to see how far things could go off track in the current situation.

Michael McMillen


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GOP obstructionists

So, “Republicans want a different type of economic recovery than the Democrats and the administration favor” (BDN, Feb. 3).

Duh — If “we The People” agreed, the GOP would still be in the majority. The Republicans seem bent on sabotaging everything the president is trying to accomplish. It’s time for them to realize that what they want is not what we want, or they would still be in charge. Wake up and smell the roses.

The GOP needs to realize that people — Republicans and Democrats — want what the president has promised and he needs and wants all of our help.

So, Republicans, (other than Susan Collins or Olympia Snowe), try to cooperate and compromise — not devastate.

Helen L. Cantor


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Happy and gay

I don’t understand what the fear is concerning gay marriage. I don’t believe that homosexuals or those who support their matrimony “influence or intimidate some residents to legitimize and accept their lifestyle,” as a letter recently stated.

I actually believe a lot of Christians use the Bible to intimidate people to believe certain things, in this case that gay marriage is wrong and “sinful.” However, I don’t believe that the Bible has anything to do with this. This is about our American values modernizing.

As a woman, I’m grateful for this. Before women’s suffrage, my voice would not be allowed to be heard and my reason for living would be cooking, cleaning, and making babies. This would make me feel depressed, and deprived. Many gay people probably feel those same emotions today, because they are unable to marry.

I believe one of the strongest of our American values is happiness, and no one should stop fighting for that. This isn’t only about the gay people, it’s also about their family members who’d like to see their sons, daughters, sisters or brothers get married.

Alice Anderson


• • •

One too many bailouts

The current government, like the stock market, appears to me to be in a spastic phase. Congress with the president’s agreement is rushing projects through as a response to crises (real or imagined) without reasoned debate and calm consideration.

This is not the time to shoot from the hip (ready, fire, then aim) but a time for careful evaluation of where we are and where we need to go. I don’t have to repeat the litany of troubles or the causes. I’m interested in solutions. Most who have been observing current events should know that we have a serious and potentially ruin-ous debt situation compounded by the meltdown of many of our financial and industrial enterprises.

We already are passing on to our children and their children a crushing burden of debt and are borrowing heavily from countries that may prove to be adversarial if they are not already. Our rush to enact federal bailouts is based on accumulating further multitrillion-dollar debt that has to be serviced at some time in the future. We must stop this before a financial train wreck occurs and there is no one to bail out anyone. One too many bailouts (like maybe even now) and there will be nothing left to bailout with. The last man or woman standing will have to put the coins on the eyes of the once most vibrant and productive country in the world and if there is any power still being generated, turn out the lights.

Orin Lowe


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