LETTERS

May 20, 2011: Arctic warming, Will Rodgers wisdom

Posted May 19, 2011, at 7:03 p.m.

Rain, snow explained

When our cities were buried in snow last winter, people ridiculed former Vice President Gore’s accurate statement that global warming is “the greatest challenge we’ve ever faced.” They would say, “If it is getting warmer, why is it snowing?”

Calling the phenomena “Arctic warming” probably describes it better. It is the melting of the glaciers in our Arctic regions that caused last winter’s snow and our current nonstop rain. All that excess moisture has to go somewhere.

Our tremendously increased burning of fossil fuels — coal, oil and gas — causes the air pollution, which in turn causes the global warming and melting glaciers.

Elbridge Gagnon

Houlton

• • •

Context for bin Laden

Are the people protesting Osama bin Laden’s death crazy?

Nowhere do they mention the 9-11 deaths that he instigated, orchestrated, acknowledged and boasted of as if he was a hero. He did not die a martyr. He died a murderer.

Since when in the history of humanity has a country not had the right to seek justice when attacked?

These protesters now labeling us as terrorists as a result of Osama bin Laden’s death are ludicrous to the extreme. It was justice rendered to a man who was unstoppable, a man whose lunatic ravings of murderous plans of an insane and paranoid nature would have continued.

Sallie Lee Whitney

Old Town

• • •

Wind and deficit

Are we looking at the big picture, considering the proposals for wind power in the Highland Mountains? Are we trying to “kill the goose that lays the golden egg?”

I am not a resident of Highland Plantation. However, my grandfather lived, labored, built, married, raised his family and now rests in the shadow of the Highland Mountains. I believe that he would be appalled at the thought of ravaging those mountains for a project producing very minimal benefit to anyone except a few developers. I believe that he would be more appalled to know that the U.S. Congress is considering raising the national debt limit above $14.3 trillion.

Without federal subsidies, the Highland Wind project would be unthinkable. Those subsidies are part of that national debt, I believe.

We are told that this project is to secure our future. How can that be, when it is not cost-effective and could not even be considered without taxpayer dollars? How can that be, when on its own the real cost of power from this proposed project cannot compete with other sources of power?

I listened as co-developer Rob Gardner said “some people think those wind towers are majestic.” I believe that my grandfather would be of the opinion that those mountains are majestic enough just as God made them.

Charles E. Hall

Lisbon Falls

• • •

Questions remain

No wonder Republicans rammed through health insurance “reform” without any public hearing. They are going to tax every person who has health insurance at the rate of $4-$6 per month in order to subsidize the health insurance industry, whose CEOs make millions of dollars a year.

If Maine people refused to pay an extra penny tax on a glass of wine, why would they agree to pay $4-$6 extra every month forever to subsidize the rich? Can anyone say “people’s veto” again?

In addition to the new tax, those of us who are older will see our premiums rise, not decrease. And what are Republicans going to do about the people who still refuse to buy health insurance? They will not be taxed, because they don’t pay for insurance. But if any of them become seriously ill from a heart attack, infection, accident, etc., they will come to the hospital and receive the same treatment as anyone with insurance. I know this firsthand, because I have been a nurse in critical care for 18 years.

There are dozens of questions that should have been asked and answered before Republicans were allowed to impose this radical “reform” on us.

Barbara Bandy

Orono

• • •

Questionable news judgment

I still am reeling from the headline of an article in a recent edition of the paper. I am not deeply educated in the First Amendment, but am deeply upset and wanted to ask why in the world that article is considered “newsworthy” to any human being in this country?

I am not commenting on the article, per se, but just on the headline. Why would a person in Ohio putting a baby in the microwave be considered news? That type of article doesn’t protect us. I can’t imagine it being of any type of national interest. Was it valuable? Did it enlighten? Would you let your 10-year-old grandson or granddaughter sit at your kitchen table and read that article so you can go on to explain to them the tragedies of life?

If it was to fill an empty space on that particular page, then bad job! If for any reason someone can tell me why we should have to open the paper and see it, please tell me, a 53-year-old mother and grandmother, why this is news in Aroostook County.

Caroline Malone

Houlton

• • •

What Will Rogers said

With gasoline prices at $4 per gallon, our Legislature had decided to address the problem by, of all things, increasing the speed limit on I-95 north of Old Town. Since some drivers already are driving at 75 mph, legislators proposed making such speeds legal.

With the governor’s endorsement of this idea, I fear that Exxon-Mobil and the other oil companies’ CEOs are going to be even more embarrassed with their increased oil profits generated by these speeding drivers. And since Maine is now open for business and the increased speed limit is good for business, why not bump it up to 85 mph or no speed limit at all? But I do wonder where the Aroostook folks are going to find the additional money to pay Exxon-Mobil after they get their health insurance bill, which, thanks to these same legislators and the governor, are facing fee increases from 17 to 19 percent.

Will Rogers once said, “The business of government is to keep government out of business — that is, unless business needs government aid.” Why does that have such a familiar ring to it?

Donald C. Grant

Stetson

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