Conserved land taxed
In a letter in the Jan. 4 edition of the Bangor Daily News to which the editor gave the title “Conservation’s high cost,” Roger Yochelson of Addison states as fact that once conservation land is purchased, “there is no more tax revenue,” and “that cost burden then is spread among struggling residents.”
As president of the Great Pond Mountain Conservation Trust in Orland, I have found this piece of misinformation to be remarkably widespread. And it can be harmful to the relationship between a land trust and the community.
Here are the facts: Our organization owns 4,300 acres in Orland, the Wildlands. The property is always open to the public for traditional uses.
Every year the town of Orland sends us a substantial tax bill. We pay it, in full.
Far from being a burden on the town, we provide outdoor recreation for the community, while protecting a beautiful piece of land for future generations, while paying our fair share of local taxes. And we certainly do not make large demands on services provided by the town.
Since we are able to provide these benefits to the town and region only because of the generous support of donors, most of whom are fellow area landowners and taxpayers, it is very important to us that the public be accurately informed about these issues.
Gays and choice
In response to Larry Marshall’s Jan. 5 letter to the editor, “Military backlash,” I agree the military has overreacted in the case of the aircraft commander’s video. It seems they need to lighten up a bit. However, I do not agree with the last paragraph’s conclusion.
Let me say first that one of my six children is gay. I am assuming when he writes, “If someone wants to join any group …” he is referring to joining the gays and not the Navy. Over the years I’ve spent some time studying just how it is that some people are gay and others are not. It seems to me the letter writer is assuming that some people choose to be gay.
I ask the writer to close his eyes for one minute and imagine that these gay people did not choose to be gay any more than he or I could choose red hair, blue eyes or to be left-handed. I certainly never chose to be heterosexual. Then imagine that God in His incredibly diverse imagination chose to make gays just as they are. If that could possibly be true — and Genesis does keep telling us that after each day of creation, “God saw it was good” — then how do you think we should treat gays?
Say no to liberals
Organizing for America, that Soros-funded socialist media machine, has just sent out a new letter to the progressive (ultra liberal) faithful that really is full of it. They refuse to see the shellacking they took on Nov. 3 as a repudiation of the policies put forward by Nancy, Harry and Barack during the first two years of this admini-stration and the last four years of Democratic congressional control.
While they refer to the car in the ditch again, they refuse to admit that they have buried that car in 6 feet of mud. They say the economy is “recovering” when we all know they have created no private sector jobs with the bailouts and stimulus. All they have created is a larger bureaucracy and shoveled more money to unions and government employees.
They want us to focus on the future, when we all know the debt and deficits are going to make our America a Third World economy. They tell us that the Affordable Care Act was bipartisan and will bring costs down in health care because the CBO says so. Nothing they did during the 111th Congress was bipartisan. It was a power grab of the first order by progressives and socialists.
They tell us they have improved the lives of our citizens. Where? Has anyone checked the prices at the grocery store, gas station, toll roads, auto dealers, doctors and hospitals? Where is the media reporting all this? It’s hard to think of one program they shoved down our throats that has improved anything. It’s time to “Just Say No.”
About smart meters
Are the controversial smart meters really needed?
In the decade-plus I was honored to live in sparsely populated South Dakota, I learned much about interpersonal responsibility, practicality and reliance. For example, each and every month, as with every other South Dakotan, I recorded the meter readings for both the electrical and water meters, mailing it in by the designated due date, along with our self-computed monthly payment.
Imagine the savings utilities reaped — and passed on — from no monthly technical readings nor upkeep of trucks, no administrative overhead or mailing expense from monthly invoice mailings, and best of all no expensive meter-reading equipment. It was only at year’s end that utilities had the meters professionally read, when inaccuracies — for whatever reason — would be rectified and adjusted.
We were a “smart” bunch, ingenious and independent. What’s better? Smart meters or smart people? Simplicity often is the best answer. There was no need for utilities either to send out meter readers monthly or go to the expense of smart meters.
No thanks to GOP
We should be ashamed! Every day another revelation of our stupidity is exhibited, and every day the Republicans show themselves to be liars. The biggest lie they tell is that they care about the middle class.
They start wars that the middle class and poor fight and die for. They demand huge tax cuts for themselves and charge the bill to your kids and mine. They send your jobs overseas and send their money to the Cayman Islands for tax-free safekeeping. They make sure useless baubles such as Paris Hilton never have to work and try to figure out how they can cut your mom’s Social Security.
Our veterans return home with terrible injuries, and they try to cut medical benefits. Bankruptcies and poverty increase every day, and the Republicans resist any attempt to help and threaten to filibuster proposed help for the poor. BP pollutes the gulf and the southern United States, and the Republicans want to remove any con-trols on big business. We have discovered that the Iraq war was a terrible lie and that Bush and Cheney are war criminals and responsible for 100,000 deaths, and nothing will be done.
Last November we had a choice. The Republicans and tea party folks played on your fears, racism and ignorance, and you voted for them. You knew all this, or should have, and yet you voted for them. Welcome to the Third World, folks. We are on our way.