Nov. 30 Letters to the Editor

Posted Nov. 29, 2010, at 7:52 p.m.

Slippery leaders

If I were a just-elected Maine legislator and I had been elected on a promise to bring fiscal sense and responsiveness to the way we need to govern our state, I would make sure that the people who elected me knew and believed that I would take my responsibilities very seriously.

To that end, I would make darn sure that we don’t allow such slippery individuals as Mr. Nutting to lead our efforts.

Paul Stewart

Corea

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All-time finest story

The BDN’s Nov. 23 front page story headlined, “9-year-old hero honored,” is the finest for a Maine newspaper for all time.

Matthew Drisko, courageous and quick-thinking, is one of Maine’s finest; Sharon Kiley Mack’s story, befittingly well-written. And Lester Drisko, lobsterman and beloved grandfather, amazingly saved.

Gary M. Boone

Presque Isle

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Senators condemned

I join the AAUW and the National Women’s Law Center in condemning the U.S. Senate’s action in its first vote on the Paycheck Fairness Act on Wednesday, Nov. 17.

The House passed its own version of the bill nearly two years ago, but the Senate fell two votes short of the 60 needed to end debate and proceed to a vote on the measure aimed at fighting wage discrimination on the basis of sex.

Maine’s own Sens. Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe voted with their party and against hardworking American women, who earn an average of 77 cents to every dollar a man earns. The next time either senator is up for re-election, remember that they are guaranteed pay equity, health care and other benefits of their offices. Then decide for yourself whether they deserve to keep their jobs.

Melissa MacCrae

Brewer

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When will we learn?

On Dec. 24, 1979, the Soviet Union deployed its 40th Army in Afghanistan, with a final troop withdrawal that ended the war on Feb. 15, 1989, a total of 3,342 days, or nine years, one month and 23 days.

On Oct. 7, 2001, the United States attacked Afghanistan in early combat operations, and on Nov. 30, we will have been engaged in that war for 3,343 days, or nine years, one month and 24 days — longer than the Soviet Union.

During the Cold War the U.S. wore down the Soviet Union by outspending it, beyond what it could afford, until that system collapsed. Is Al-Qaida doing the same? Are some of those bills coming due? Certainly in terms of money (trillions).

But what price glory when the cost includes your young, your smartest (busy working on things that kill, instead of things that serve), as well as the money, the land, the young and the old of the “other” side?

When will we humans learn that war does not have to follow the statement: “But we disagree with you”?

Paul Sheridan

Northport

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Infrastructure solutions

The BDN chose to include a piece from The Maine Sunday Telegram headlined, “State transportation on edge of failure” (Nov. 29).

Some of the suggested alternatives for funding the transportation infrastructure include a charge by the mile, or tolling the 295 Portland bypass. The article also states: “The current system is unfair.”

The current system is unfair. A Toyota, Chevy or even Cadillac passenger car doesn’t do any appreciable damage to roads or bridges. A 100,000-pound semi-truck can ruin a road in a single week of constant travel, particularly if that travel is in the months of March or April.

So let me propose alternative solutions:

Increase registration fees and access those fees by weight. Heavy vehicles pay more, light vehicles pay less.

Limit the weight limit on Maine’s noninterstate roads to 60,000 pounds.

Use your “pay by the mile tax” on big rigs which will be more easy to collect (they still have to keep log books don’t they?).

Decouple all nonhighway projects from the gas tax (I believe we still fund the state police from the gas tax fund).

I agree with the concept that those who break it should fix it. Let’s look at who should really pay and charge them.

Harry Snyder

Whiting

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Ghost town arena

So many people in the area are unemployed and even if you are lucky enough to have a minimum wage job, how are people supposed to survive? Prices on everything keep going up and up. Rentals in Bangor are so high that I don’t understand how anyone can afford them anymore.

If they go ahead with this new arena, they are going to make Bangor into a ghost town.

Gretchen Fish

Glenburn

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Photos tell stories

Just about everyone is familiar with the saying, “Every picture tells a story.” As of the last few years, I am wondering what happened to the photos that told stories in the good old BDN.

The “old school” photographers, Jack Loftus and Carroll Hall composed or shot clear, realistic shots that everyone could appreciate and understand. A few of the younger fellows on your staff must think it “edgy” to take pictures at odd angles, with blurred subject matter and sharp backgrounds, or with too much background and not enough close-ups.

I am tired of paying for such inferior storytelling through photography — but how else to get local news and information? Please remind your photo staff that the picture needs to be able to speak for itself and not be open to interpretation.

Jo Andrews

Bangor

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Stop complaining

John Kelly of Millinocket (“Palin-free day,” BDN Letters, Nov. 26) claims that he is sick of Sarah Palin news. If so, why does he dwell on so much negativity that he comes across as sour and angry?

If the subject in his laborious letter concerning Sarah Palin is any indicator of tired mentality, it is time for Mr. Kelly to cleanse his mind, walk past what bothers him, find something positive to occupy his time and stop boring the rest of us with his complaining.

We need to be positive and happy in this world.

Peter Carminati

Stonington

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