Spending questions

Last month, Gouldsboro selectmen voted 4-1 to spend up to $40,000 to buy a new four-wheel-drive pickup truck for the part-time road commissioner. Selectmen used the surplus left in the account authorized by a previous town meeting vote to purchase the salt/gravel lot on Route 1 from the state.

The proper way to decide this capital expense is to have a warrant article ask voters to transfer the surplus to an account authorizing the purchase.

What was the emergency that prevented selectmen from waiting until the June 11 annual meeting to ask residents to decide the need for a new vehicle?

I urge Gouldsboro taxpayers to seek answers June 11 when we are asked to authorize $6,100 to maintain this questionable purchase for the coming year.

Robert Winship Johnston


Mayor LeVeto

What a boon for Gov. Paul LePage’s opponents in the upcoming election. Not only was there blatant plagiarism in the welfare report, but the Alexander Group was awarded the contract on a no-bid basis. I would guess that some commercials are being formulated.

Jeff Smith


Lawyer advertising

I am responding to John McCarthy’s excellent May 24 article concerning lawyer advertising. Forty-plus years ago I became a lawyer, when lawyers were not allowed to advertise. I was entering a thoughtful, learned and erudite profession. It was a profession that valued intelligent discourse, the sort that resulted in drafting the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Then the Supreme Court decided that prohibiting lawyers from advertising would violate their First Amendment right to free speech.

What has followed can only be described as a race to the bottom. With a total lack of dignity, or suggestion of well researched and thought out advice, some lawyers exercise their freedom of speech as if it were a promotion for a circus act. One ad shows a lawyer wielding a baseball bat threatening his adversary; one says, menacingly, “show them you mean business”; and another shows insurance adjusters cringing in terror at the mere mention of a particular lawyer’s name. None of these ads mention intelligence, thoughtfulness or a careful analysis of the facts, the law and their possible effects on a client. They revolve totally around promotion of hostility and aggression.

Larry Flynt, publisher of Hustler magazine said something like, “The First Amendment means I can be as crude and offensive as I want.” Hopefully the First Amendment standards for lawyer advertising are different from those of Hustler magazine.

Brent R. Slater


Brogan’s excellent article

Beth Brogan’s May 25 BDN article about Davielle Rodgers, a technical sergeant in the U.S. Air Force Reserves, is the finest piece of journalism that I have read in years. She was able to embrace and understand Rodgers’ plight.

Rodgers shows the classic symptoms of post-traumatic stress. We leave off the “D” [for disorder] because what she is experiencing is completely normal. PTS is a normal reaction to an abnormal situation, which is usually life-threatening. Like many of us who have experienced the horrors of war, she will in all probability not “get over” her symptoms, but she will certainly adjust to them. There is nothing this world can throw at this brave woman that is worse than what she has already overcome.

A visit to the service officer with DAV at Togus would be time well spent. Rodgers, you represent the absolute finest this country has as a representative. Thank you for your dedicated service.

Alex Allmayer-Beck, CSW

Combat Medic 173Rd ABN

Vietnam 1969-1970


Lost our way

In response to the BDN editorial, “ Wasteful, Shameful, Tax Dollars and the Alexander Report,” I have a few thoughts on state, national and international “foolishness.”

I would have us go back a few centuries, to ancient Greece (9th century B.C., for instance). So much of everything we lost in our past we need to relearn from those past centuries. In our rush to get to where we are now, wisdom and so many other values have been lost or forgotten.

Let’s stop the foolishness of recent years, and get some common sense back in power. Our priorities have lost their way. We really don’t have a lot of time to do it.

Pat Felton


Grin and bear it

If the anti-bear hunting referendum passes, there will be a population explosion of bears in Maine. Since the food source for bears is limited, bears will seek food in homes. They will harass and possibly consume pet cats and dogs. They will cause damage.

These bears will need to be trapped and relocated.

I suggest that a list be made based on the percentage of voters in each district who vote to restrict bear hunting. I suggest that the rogue bears be relocated according to this list. The first bear needing to be relocated will be placed in the center of the electoral district whose voters cast the highest percentage for the referendum. The second pair would be placed in the next district on the list. This would continue until there were no more districts whose voters approved the referendum. The process would repeat from the top of the list.

It seems to me that this would result in the greatest degree of fairness in considering the voters actions and intentions.

Charles Rappaport


Missing Phil and Ethan

I read with regret the last column “ Sometimes the best arguments end in agreement” by Phil Harriman and Ethan Strimling on May 24. I want to express appreciation to the BDN for publishing it these two years. It helped me understand so much better the issues involved in the bills being discussed in the Legislature and the position I should take.

Thank you, Phil and Ethan. I will miss you very much.

Mary B. Pearson