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Monday, June 25, 2012: Citizens United, wind power and Angus King

Landmark decision

A news item you may have missed: In another landmark decision that resembles the court’s ruling on the definition of a corporation, the Supreme Court ruled five-to-four recently that constrictor snakes living in the wild and currently causing problems in Florida are so like corporations that they too are persons.

Because they are now persons, they can no longer be hunted unless they break laws.

Charlie Cameron


Investment in Maine

Jackson Parker has a huge stake in wind energy development ( “Clean energy investments support Maine jobs,” June 16 BDN OpEd). His perspective is narrow. His company has reaped millions in profits from the construction of an energy source which is high in cost, high in effects and very low in overall value. Wind is unreliable, intermittent, unable to be stored and unable to “stand alone.”

Mr. Parker mentions the “$1 billion of investment in Maine,” yet fails to qualify that statement. That $1 billion may have been “spent,” but the lion’s share has gone overseas. More importantly, the majority of that $1 billion came from hardworking Americans in the form of federal, state and local subsidies.

The Production Tax Credit, or PTC, Mr. Parker exhorts our senators to support is one such (very large) subsidy. Parker stated the PTC “helps level the energy playing field and provides the certainty that clean energy industries need for continued growth.” And yet Exelon, one of America’s largest wind operators, came out against an extension of the PTC.

“There comes a time when we need free-market price signals.” Free market. Fair and level competition. Pitting value and cost… against value and cost.

Wind isn’t a “developing” energy source and shouldn’t be propped up by American taxpayers. If the wind industry can’t compete — can’t stand on its own and provide a product of value without picking our empty pockets — then it shouldn’t be granted this lucrative subsidy. Maines senator’s should continue to support an energy plan based on science, economics and common sense. The PTC should be allowed to expire.

Karen Pease

Lexington Township


Once again Renee Ordway has resorted to falsehoods and misrepresentations when writing of the Dechaine case ( “Let’s not forget the evidence against Dechaine,” June 16-17 BDN). For starters, there is no proof that Dechaine locked his truck. Anyone could lock the doors without a key. And anyone could have had access to the locked truck through the rear slider. If Dechaine was the killer why would he lock the doors of his getaway vehicle anyway?

The alleged incriminating statements she quotes were offered in testimony by two detectives and are contradicted by their notes. Ordway has been corrected on these matters before, but chooses to employ fiction over facts because the facts do not support her opinions.

William Bunting


Leadership qualities

Some of the essential qualities of an effective leader are caring, the ability to inspire, intelligence, perseverance, courage to take risks, excellent communication, flexibility, empathy, setting a vision and continuous learning. Angus King is one of those rare leaders who possess all these qualities.

We have known each other for the past 16 years. He taught me on leadership at Bowdoin College. He led us on a trade mission to Canada.

He had the vision to see the need for computers in young students’ education and successfully introduced laptops to seventh and eighth graders. He took a risk by introducing this project and gained support from both Democrats and Republicans. That is exactly what we need — a leader who can bring people together in our state, our country and the world.

King is well educated with a law degree from the University of Virginia. He is a superb public speaker. During his term, many business people felt proud and inspired to do business in Maine because of him.

He is approachable and personable. Although I was new to Maine, I was able to walk up to him and introduce myself even though he held office as governor. Angus King works hard by spending his time as a lawyer, teacher, writer, businessman, loving husband and father. He is a voracious reader who learns continuously.

I know from direct personal experience, Angus King will be a great U.S. senator. Please support him.

Ashok Nalamalapu


Pig in a poke

Now that the primaries are over, the election campaigns will be in full swing. The Citizens United decision has enabled enormous amounts of cash to be dumped into advertising — much of which is designed to confuse rather than inform. The only defense for the voter is good journalism and debates where critical questions are asked.

Unfortunately, journalists too often pose either softball questions or allow candidates to dodge the subject. In the 2010 debates, candidates were often allowed to answer questions with a version of an amorphous, “I’m against waste, fraud and abuse.” I’m sure they also were against space alien invasion, zombie attacks and cholera as well.

That is not the point. The journalist’s (or debate moderator’s) job is to press the candidate to state their real views on the topic and not accept platitudes.

There are too many real challenges to allow candidates to dodge questions. The voters deserve more. We need to know where our representatives stand on the economy, whether they would support a war with Iran, whether they believe in climate change and-or evolution, how they feel about abortion and what their stand is on gay marriage.

Additionally, we need to know how they feel about growing income inequality, whether we should have more banking regulation and whether they think corporations are people. And yes, Angus King, we really do need to know who you plan to caucus with.

Without this information, voters will simply be buying a “pig in a poke.”

Greg Rossel


Radiant Christian

I would like to make an editorial comment about Diane Morrison, the woman that was tragically killed on outer Broadway on Sunday night, June 9, in Bangor.

She was a radiant Christian coming out of a wonderful anointed and glorious service both from the morning and then at that point from the night service at Glad Tidings Church, where she was an active member. If there were meetings to be remembered, they were those meetings. So when she was taken from our midst to a better place, she left in style. I personally greeted her with a warm handshake as she beamed with a smile that was characteristic of her demeanour.

When Glad Tidings Church assembled the following Wednesday, the editorial comment on the sign in front of the church summarized it all in one word, “Home” — Diane Morrison had gone home to be with the Lord whom she loved. She shall sorely be missed, but we take great comfort in the fact she has gone “home.”

Victor F. Pinard


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