Tuesday, July 3: Supreme Court’s arrogance, U.S. energy policies

Posted July 02, 2012, at 4:16 p.m.

Candidate support

What should you look for in a candidate for the state Legislature? I look for a range of experience and expertise. That is why I am supporting Brian Jones for District 45′s representative to the Legislature.

Take a look at his record. He has taught at both the high school and college levels, and has served as a school principal. But he has plenty of experience outside the classroom as well. He has served the community of Freedom as a selectman and a volunteer firefighter.

Brian is not running for office for his own glory, but to continue to serve his community as he has done so ably. I’ll be supporting him, and I hope that the voters of Palermo, Montville, Freedom, Knox, Thorndike, Unity, Troy and Burnham will as well.

Paul P. Foisy

Freedom

DaVita will benefit patients

Thirty-three staff members of Dialysis Care of Maine would like to express our support for the sale of Dialysis Care of Maine from Eastern Maine Medical Center to DaVita. As the patient census has grown, it has become increasingly clear to the staff and our patients that EMMC has a limited ability to respond to the complexities of this specialty. DaVita will give us access to the latest research and technologies that set it apart as one of the best dialysis providers in the nation.

After careful consideration most of our staff has chosen to sign on with DaVita and remain in our positions. We feel this transaction will not only benefit our patients, but our staff and the communities we serve. While we have worked very hard providing high quality care to our patients, DaVita shows some of the best patient outcomes in the nation for its chronic hemodialysis patients, which could mean an improvement in the overall health and well-being of our patients. DaVita has also been listed by many respected organizations and publications as one of the best healthcare service providers, as well as one the best places to work in health care. We are excited at the opportunities that this relationship presents, such as more staff education, the potential creation of new positions, and a broader spectrum of services. We feel very strongly that this sale is in the best interest of our patients and staff.

Jennie Garden, RN

Enfield

Coverage complaint

Thanks for Abigail Curtis’ coverage (BDN, June 18) of the 28th Maine American Lung Association’s Trek Across Maine.

Yes, I have diabetes (1981 — insulin-pump) supported by Waldo County’s Diabetes Services Clinic but it does not “take care of him” as Abby misstated — diabetes is one disease self-controlled by the diabetic’s informed use of exercise, diet and a med/insulin regimen, physician prescribed, supported by clinic support staff.

While I appreciate including my story, it’s but one of 2,500 untold stories of Trek Across Maine’s 180-mile, three-day, 2,502-plus fundraising riders from Bethel to Belfast. I submit many more unreported were more newsworthy than the “war story” used as the understory of your photo selection.

I question your judgment selecting a war story/photo lead for a significant Maine health-related charity’s fundraising event, the antithesis of war.

It’s telling that you chose Abby’s war picture of two U.S. Afghanistan veterans memorializing fallen buddy “Mike” instead of stories more in tune with the spirit of the trek’s apolitical fundraising event to help combat lung disease and promote healthy air in Maine by the American Lung Association of Maine, which you inartfully headlined “lung group.”

Yes, I rode in support of Waldo’s Diabetes Clinic, honoring service to all diabetics and support of my ride, including diabetes educator Sue Maxwell, Dr. Linda Tyer, and office manager Debbie Blake.

Jeff Smith

Belfast

A need for a new direction

With oil drilling processes threatening the health of marine ecosystems, we must rethink our current national direction as we sit on the congested highways that oil has created. Many people believe that an expansion of offshore drilling off our own coasts will dramatically lower gas prices. However, the Department of Energy reported that gas prices would decrease by only 3 cents per gallon by 2030 if we fully developed all potential oil sources off our coasts.

Despite this report, last week the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Strategic Energy Production Act of 2012, which seeks to increase the amount of land leased for drilling. This bill proves that we are not moving in the right direction.

As a college student studying environmental policy, I worry about the focus of our country. Much of the American public is not willing to believe that cleaner energy innovation and long-term sustainability represent issues that need to be taken seriously.

People justify their behavior and opinions on the basis of convenience rather than being concerned with the long-term consequences. A change in focus and mentality must stretch from our elected officials to the commuters in our work force. With clean energy options such as offshore wind development, coupled with fuel-efficiency innovation, we have substitutes for oil. Without ending offshore drilling and increasing clean energy development, oil companies will continue feeding us a substance that creates immense risk and damage to oceanic ecosystems.

 

Grey Benjamin

Waterville

Montana common sense

The U.S. Supreme Court has done it again. First, they opened up the floodgates of corporate money into federal elections; now they have made clear that states may not slow the flow in their own state elections.

I agree with Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois who said, “This Supreme Court just doesn’t get it.”

How arrogant for the five-member majority on the court to overturn a 100-year-old Montana law that banned the state’s big-money mining interests from wielding undue influence over state government. This law was in place for a reason, and it was kept in place for a century for good reasons, too. When challenged, the state vigorously defended it, and it was upheld in state court and on appeal.

But never mind all that. Justices Roberts, Alito, Thomas, Scalia and Kennedy know better than the people of Montana, their attorney general, their state judges and their elected officials.

I do not share the court majority’s belief that the First Amendment protects unlimited corporate spending in elections. I think this decision, and the ones that preceded it, are a far bigger threat to democracy than Montana’s common-sense law ever was.

Gary Friedmann

Bar Harbor

The vision thing

Many thanks to the Bangor Region Chamber of Commerce for its “vision” of Bangor as the drug, alcohol and gambling center of Northern New England.

What’s next, legalized prostitution at the Casino?

Carl Rella

Bangor

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