August 14 Letters to the Editor

Posted Aug. 13, 2009, at 5:35 p.m.

Bee sting no one’s fault

Tom Lizotte, county commissioner of Piscataquis County, is perhaps justifiably concerned about costs (about $2,500) associated with the rescue of a girl who had a severe allergic reaction to a bee sting. Maybe if the girl was from Maine he might not have been quite so concerned about the cost. This event strikes me as very dif-ferent from those where carelessness or cockiness has led to an individual requiring a costly rescue.

This event was no fault of hers. I think some thought needs to be given to the balance between the cost of providing emergency services to folks and the tourism value to the entire economy of the “Vacation State.” Does it serve the local economy well to convey the hard-edged message that if you vacation in Maine, watch out, you’re on your own if you get into trouble through no fault of your own?

Rick Brown

Franklin

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Go after speeders

It’s great to see the Bangor Police Department has time to address parking problems (“Bangor police crack down on illegal parking,” BDN, Aug. 7). I will remember that the next time they are not around to stop the 10 cars that drive by me every time I try to cross the street with my kids at the crosswalk that by law every car is supposed to stop at if someone is trying to cross.

Parked vehicles don’t hurt or kill people, moving ones do. They also create more revenue with the higher fines. Mr. Gastia, please put an officer at each school driveway on the first day of school and ticket each driver who is driving faster than 15 mph. That will really send a message to drivers instead of minor parking violations.

Geoff Bosse

Bangor

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Snowe a Democrat?

Snowe a Democrat?

Is the Democratic Party planning to endorse Sen. Olympia Snowe in the 2010 election? Many of us, both Republicans and Democrats, are wondering.

Ron Warner

Bangor

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They can’t hide

Repeated calls to both Rep. Michaud’s and Sen. Snowe’s local offices over the past several weeks have yielded no commitment from either office to hold any kind of public town meetings during the August recess.

Both have signed onto some kind of government takeover of our health care system and special interests pushing it. Apparently it is much more comfortable hearing from lobbyists around lunch in Washington than voters in Maine who may have serious questions about several aspects of this intrusion into our private lives.

I would suggest to both that if they continue to hide from the voters in August 2009 they may find the voters will not forget it in November 2010.

Peter M. Sheff

Palermo

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FairPoint fishy smell

There is a raunchy stench coming out of Augusta these days. It seems that Phil Lindley, chairman of the ConnectMe Authority and PUC and Gov. Baldacci are allowing FairPoint Communications to hire lobbyists to fight the University of Maine over broadband access.

FairPoint, technically bankrupt and owing thousands of dollars in fines for poor customer service, is hiring lobbyists to challenge our university.

UMaine is applying for broadband grants to start a center to train Maine students to build, operate and maintain a wireless grid that would connect all of Maine in a seamless, interoperable wireless grid.

FairPoint is a land line company providing broadband over a copper wire and a gas powered bucket truck. In my town, they are incapable of providing broadband service to the majority of the people who want service. Their copper-based technology is obsolete and will never be able to cover everyone and provide the speed nec-essary for video education and medical services to rural communities.

It really stinks when the governor, ConnectMe Authority and the PUC are allowing FairPoint to spend money to lobby against our university that can help Mainers, even in rural communities, to connect everyone to state-of-the-art technology and provide Mainers with jobs, jobs, jobs.

Why is FairPoint not spending this money to improve its land line business and its customers who complain about its bad service in Maine as well as Vermont and New Hampshire? This smells fishy.

Allyn Beecher

Monroe

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Court transparency

I am writing out of concern for Judge Jabar’s recent appointment to the Maine supreme court. Although he is highly qualified to fill this position, I can’t help but wonder why he would want to serve on a judicial court that is ranked 50th in the nation for transparency (see halt.org) even as Gov. Baldacci states it should be a “model for the rest of the country.” If this (secrecy in government) is what this country is declining into, then we are in serious trouble.

The Judiciary Committee will have an opportunity Aug. 24 to benefit from Judge Jabar’s experiences as a practicing attorney, district attorney and superior court justice to learn from him whether or not there is any merit to the HALT Report. This could be enlightening if the tough questions are asked by the committee.

However, I have my doubts, as the chairman (Sen. Lawrence Bliss) has already dismissed the report as “without merit,” never contacting its author, Susan Blonder or the HALT organization.

The Judiciary Committee is the proper forum to have this matter discussed so that we the people can decide which statement is closer to the truth.

Kevin Morrissey

Winslow

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Ecuador comparison

I just returned from a mission trip with my son from Quito, Ecuador. It’s always good to be home.

The gig discussion here is the Obama plan for America. While in Ecuador we were able to get their take on what’s happening in the U.S. Ecuador is a very socialistic country with four of the seven oil companies owned by the government. The government determines all wages and provides healthcare.

Talking with a taxicab driver, an older gentleman, he expressed concern for the direction we are taking as a country. What happens in the U.S. affects the rest of the world. In a socialistic country there is less opportunity for success in business or personal advancement because everything is out of your control, someone else di-rects your future.

In the Aug. 6 BDN, letters and op-eds on health care, on insurance companies and on service from the medical profession, not just hospitals. In Ecuador they determine if it’s life threatening or elective treatment. If it’s life-threatening, they do what is necessary and send you home; when it’s elective you go on a list and in six months to two years you might receive treatment.

What was good about the trip to Ecuador was the opportunity to see how things might be under a socialist government. Is this what we want for America?

R. Scott Jellison

Hermon

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