July 13 Letters to the Editor

Posted July 12, 2009, at 6:12 p.m.

Gospel of love

It saddens me to think that the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland, in conjunction with fundamentalist Protestant sects, has managed to gather more than 55,000 signatures in the very institutions that are supposed to preach a gospel of love. I was hoping that Maine didn’t harbor that many people filled with this kind of hate; guess I was wrong.

Brian MacFarland

Prospect

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Abbot excise tax cut

I would like to respond to Beulah Bragdon’s letter “Excise tax ripe for cut” (BDN, June 30). If Ms. Bragdon had read the entire article she would have seen that I am totally in favor of excise tax relief, just not the proposal that will be coming before the people in November.

She states that the town of Abbot had an 18 percent increase in excise tax from 2007 to 2008. I’m not sure where Maine Revenue Services, where she claims to have gotten the information, got its figures because the official town reports, which get mailed to Maine Revenue Services annually, clearly state that excise tax collected in 2007 was $118,874 and in 2008 it was $112,830, a difference of about $6,000 less in 2008, not 8 percent more. I might add that Abbot has an annual financial audit conducted by an independent firm from Bangor and if these figures were not correct it would certainly be disclosed at that time.

As to “making a living on the taxpayer time,” may I say that my salary is recommended by the budget committee and voted upon by the residents at town meeting. My current salary was set in 2006.

Please be assured, Ms. Bragdon, I would love to see some honest tax relief for every taxpayer in Maine because I too pay taxes and register an automobile. However, in my opinion, this proposal is not it.

Lorraine Leeman

Abbott

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Price of advertising

Our country runs on the sales of products and services. Some of those products are securities, reflective of material acts of commerce. Some are what we call hardware, a material thing that serves a physical purpose. All these items are presented to the public in ways that shout the virtues but only whisper the vices of the product. Television ads amply illustrate countless products with often detrimental, even deadly, consequences.

Take the pharmaceutical industry, for example. To provide a benefit, it often presents side effects that can be harmful, debilitating, even lethal. Take the securities industry, for example. The brokerage houses hawk their IPOs, without ever giving the client a clear list of the risks associated with them. That is the boiler room tactic that has cost Wall Street the trust of the citizen investor.

Take the medical insurance industry, for example. The policies sold are seldom understood fully by the consumer because the policy details are often abstruse and tricky. Medical insurance has excluded so much coverage to so many that it has occasioned citizen outrage hoping to break the death-grip of the private insurers. Now the hue and cry has compelled the Congress to act.

Take our auto industry, for instance. For decades it substituted fanciful images for real value and now two of the big three are “reinventing themselves.” The investors who trusted them have been betrayed so these two can “restructure.”

Isn’t it time to fully understand the price of advertising?

Frederick Mendel

Rockland

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Inspection rejection

Last week I took my 2004 Dodge in for the required annual safety inspection at the local garage. After the mechanic had gone over it, he failed it because it needed a wheel bearing and had a leak in the transfer case. They cut my sticker and told me that once the repairs were done they would give me a sticker, providing others things still passed.

I have been repairing my own cars for more than 45 years so I got the parts and did the needed repairs. I took the truck back for inspection and it passed. When the mechanic came back with my keys, he said, “Just so you know, in the future I will not inspect your truck unless I do the needed repairs.”

Of course, most anyone can see the problems that arise with this kind of policy. I have written to the state police because they control the inspection licenses. Apparently, the policy of this garage is legal because I have not heard a word back from anyone.

Gregory A. Boober Sr.

Eddington

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Eagles deserve apology

When a local merchant recently was asked for a simple donation for a Fourth of July float‚ he made a disparaging comment about the local Eagles club. He was misinformed.

The Fraternal Order of Eagles #3177 located at 22 Atlantic Ave. in Brewer has a membership of 2‚186. These members devote countless hours raising money for local charities, community service organizations and for research to cure diseases such as diabetes. At its recent recognition dinner, this club donated more than $22,000 to various agencies to support their efforts‚ including hospice care, a food pantry, veterans assistance, children’s camps and elderly programs. They also gave $4,500 in scholarships to local young people.

All of this money was raised entirely by members and guests of this organization. The Fraternal Order of Eagles was founded more than 100 years ago and has grown to over 1 million members‚ including some past U.S. presidents‚ in more than 1,700 cities in the United States and Canada.

We are people working quietly to do what we can to make life better for those who need assistance. Contrary to what this merchant thinks, this organization is dedicated to helping others. Thus, if you hear someone say they belong to the Fraternal Order of Eagles, they deserve your respect and gratitude for all of the good things they accomplish. Most assuredly, the members of FOE #3177 are outstanding people who give generously of their time and money to the betterment of others.

This local merchant owes the Eagles an apology.

Mary Doyon

Bangor

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Big-box gripe

I think it’s a disgrace the way the so-called big-box stores fight all the time to be allowed to build bigger and bigger.

The excuse they use is so they’ll have more of what the people need, at the same time they are discontinuing the supplies for copiers, printers, etc.

Almost everyone I talk to is complaining that they are being told they’ll have to order directly from the companies.

If this is the case, why do we need them at all?

Sheila Crocker

Hudson

http://bangordailynews.com/2009/07/12/opinion/july-13-letters-to-the-editor-2/ printed on August 27, 2014