Readers' Letters
by: L.E. BASKOW, Portland’s regional Climate Action Plan, one of the nation’s most aggressive proposals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, could change the face of the city. Letter writers disagree, however, on the value of those changes.

Since I'm a scientist and get my information from reading, I'll stick with the four Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reports produced over the past 20 years and 90 percent of the world's climate scientists, who are reporting evidence of man-made impacts on global climate change (Changes in the wind, Nov. 26).

I'm all for the Portland's Climate Action Plan and embrace it wholeheartedly. With these regulations will come great innovation.

Glenn Esler

Southeast Portland

Voters can repeal changes

So forgetting all the reasons good or bad, there seems to have been a single factor forgotten in all of this: Here in Oregon, if the people don't like something, they can vote a change (Changes in the wind, Nov. 26).

As much as all the proposals sound like they are going to hurt, how long do you suppose that it will take people to come up with an initiative to repeal some or all of them?

Not long, in my book.

Jim Ourada


Bike commuting not a sacrifice

I know more than a few Portlanders who commute by bike, but none who think of it as a 'sacrifice' (Changes in the wind, Nov. 26).

On the contrary, we choose this transportation mode because it's fun, healthy and free. I trust that other adaptations for a functional future will prove similarly congenial.

Joel M. Batterman

Southeast Portland

Enforce existing codes first

The city of Portland should take the first step and stop cutting down the city's mature trees and replacing them with non-native deciduous ones (Changes in the wind, Nov. 26). The city should also enforce the existing environmental codes against tree cutting before adding new ones to the ones they already don't enforce.

Children already ride mass transit to school - it is called a school bus. Buses are a much safer mode of transportation for children than putting them on bicycles or foot to get to school. If traffic doesn't get them, a sexual predator might.

And Portland already had a curbside recycling plan, and when it was suddenly announced that all of our sorting was for naught since the garbage collector dumped them all into a single bin, we stopped doing that. Now we are supposed to restart the program? Obviously, it will be added and our garbage collection bills will see a fee increase for it.

Also, adding sidewalks to existing infrastructure is so expensive as to make it impractical. If a roadway has no shoulder to walk on, then the only way to add a shoulder is to rebuild the entire road base.

All of this unproven 'science' is just a scam to make taxpayers spend our money to support the expansion of utility companies and to subsidize green companies. Certain Congress members have very large investments in making all of this come true for their own personal profits. Global warming actions need to be separated and defined differently to do things smarter to keep our environment clean, which most everyone will support.

Ann Friday

Southwest Portland

Change must be universal

Portland City Hall and Multnomah County operate in fantasy land (Changes in the wind, Nov. 26). An army of planners is being paid for a problem that doesn't actually exist, and if it even does exist, there is nothing the city or state can do about it unless you are somehow under the delusion other countries can be trusted not to counteract actions here. Moreover, it may not even be the best course of action as a number of scientists say adapting is a better approach.

The best the plebian class can hope for is the planners continue to tout how important their work is so they can continue to make salary and other generous benefits, and all the while those outside City Hall suffer high unemployment and low wages because most long-term businesses shy away from the lunatic fringe of Portland and the state of Oregon.

Bob Clark

Southeast Portland

PGE not telling the whole story

It is a shame that PGE's CEO Jim Piro shortchanges his customers by providing only partial information about the costs to control carbon emissions (Changes in the wind, Nov. 26). He said that electricity prices may rise 20 percent if a cap and trade plan goes into effect. Yet, even if that is true and a fee of $30 per ton of carbon is assessed, a good part of that fee will go toward energy efficiency. In fact, the same article says the climate plan is for homes to 'reduce the energy they use by 25 percent.'

So if the price of a kilowatt hour from PGE goes up 20 percent, but the average PGE home uses 25 percent fewer kilowatt hours, the average household bill will go down 5 percent. In fact, most studies of large-scale efficiency programs to combat global warming show that increased spending on energy efficiency leads to higher unit rates, but lower customer bills.

Jim Piro knows all of this. He has done the customers of PGE a disservice by telling them less than half of the story.

Jim Edelson

Northeast Portland

Left forces climate action changes

Steve Law's article 'Changes in the wind' (Nov. 26) explains the environmental extreme measures that our local governments plan to impose on residents. This demonstrates why I have long believed global warming was a fraud.

The so-called 'science' of global warming has been so strongly embraced by the left, radicals of the left and environmentalists because it gives them power - the power to tell the rest of us: where to live; what we can drive; how much we can drive; what kind of roads and bridges we can have; what products we can use; what kind of energy we use; how much energy we use; what kind of houses we have; what size house we have; what size house lot we have; what kind of fuel we use in our vehicles; and on and on.

It is plain scary reading this description of what the left and radicals in Portland have done to us and are poised to do in the future, all in the name of global warming.

Rod Kirkpatrick


Make native languages official

For too long Thanksgiving Day has been used as an opportunity for an 'All-American' mythological love fest that is now rather out of touch with the changing demographics, diversifying cultures and better understanding of history (Group battles holiday myths, Nov. 26).

Perhaps one of the best ways to honor Oregon's indigenous heritage is to encourage the Legislature to make Chinook Wawa, the lingua franca of the earlier era that draws from many native words, one of Oregon's official languages with co-equal status with American English and Spanish.

New Zealand successfully made Maori one of its co-equal official languages in 1987. New Zealand has not gone bankrupt, nor did the sky fall. However it gave every government agency its Maori name, a Maori version of the national anthem, and everyone a right to use Maori in legal proceedings. The latter is rather symbolic, as most Maoris are fluent in English as well.

'Speak English, this is America?' Yes, this is America - not England. If the early settlers were immigrants and not invaders, they would have studied Salish, Modoc and other various languages of the land and made some efforts at assimilation.

Sarah Morrigan

Southwest Portland

Pilgrims' problem was socialism

The myth that really needs to be battled is that the new land and its hardships were the cause of the pilgrim's problems (Group battles holiday myths, Nov. 26).

William Bradford, the first governor of the colony, wrote that the confounding issue was that the first economic system established by the pilgrims was basically socialism.

Whatever was grown, made or gathered was put together into a community 'store' and all were allowed to take from the 'store' an equal share - regardless of their actual contribution. The predictable result was that far too many people sat on their duffs and contributed little. Too little was produced, and the pilgrims nearly starved as a result. When the system was changed to allow each person or family to keep what they produced, the colony began to thrive.

Lesson: Capitalism works, Socialism doesn't.

What happened to the Indians is a predictable result when you have a culture that doesn't advance for thousands of years. Millennia ago, we were all in the Stone Age. Europe and Asia went through The Copper Age, The Bronze Age, The Iron Age. We had developed written languages, mathematics, maps, the ability to navigate the oceans of the world. The intellectual curiosity demonstrated by the people of Europe and Asia stands in stark contrast to the intellectual complacency demonstrated by the Indians.

Any teaching of 'Indian curriculum' should come with a disclaimer that the material is a fabrication based on the fantasies and nonsense known as their 'oral history.' All one has to do is watch Antiques Roadshow when someone shows up with their family heirloom that, according to family history 'came over on the Mayflower' to see how accurate 'oral history' is.

Colorful it might be, accurate it isn't.

Chris Hawes


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