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Letters to the editor for Sept. 19, 2014

Climate change hysteria

Last week, in response to my opinion letter (see Letters, “Why climate change skepticism is warranted,” Sept. 5) of the week prior, we were entertained by not one, not two, but three self-appointed high priests of the anthropogenic (i.e. man-caused) global warming/climate change religion (see Spotlight Letters, Sept. 12).

The reason I classify climate change as a religion is because it has all the attributes of some religions, such as a dogma, high priests, fanatical adherents and, of course, the blasphemers/apostates. The high priests have, in essence, declared me to be a blasphemer, a title I will accept with pride.

A summation of my crime of blasphemy can be found in a quote from my previous letter: “I would actually like to know if anthropogenic global warming has any basis in reality, but I will remain skeptical until the unholy alliance between corrupt government and corrupt science is broken. Once that happens true science can begin.”

So here we have it. I have dared to not trust government and have imagined that government is the source of corruption in climate science. I have dared to learn from history by reading the debates of our Founding Fathers and taking note of their view that government always has a tendency toward self-aggrandizement. I have dared to imagine, as reward for funding climate research, that climate scientists will invariably produce results that the government expects them to produce. Thus my real crime is not that I have contended that climate change is not real, but that I have questioned the credibility of the government-science relationship.

So let us assume for the moment that anthropogenic climate change, as the priests contend, is real and that the government has magically funded climate science without influencing it. Why would the priests be concerned about a little blasphemy? The answer can be found in their dogma as I will now summarize: Man — particularly productive, independent man — is inherently evil, a destroyer of the purity of the earth. Productive man must be controlled by the only entity capable of controlling him: the government. But the masses love the results of production — cars, TVs, etc. — and climate-inspired restrictions on the producers will curtail production and raise prices. In order to get the wavering masses on board, the priests must create a climate of fear and hysteria out of all proportion to the climate change threat, so that the masses will willingly give up their freedoms and support curtailments on the freedoms of the producers.

The problem with this dogma is that the masses must never be allowed to fully comprehend it. This is why blasphemers such as myself are such a threat.

But the most interesting question is, why do the priests and their ilk behave this way? Is it mere ignorance? Self delusion? Well, I’m sorry to say that I believe it is something far darker than that.

Roy A. Fuller


Curious about Johnson’s stance on climate change

So, Sen. Betsy Johnson is upset that Ambre Energy’s permit for a coal terminal in Boardman was denied and, according to Johnson, Kitzhaber’s opposition to it “puts pressure on regulatory agencies.”

I applaud Kitzhaber’s stand on the transport of dirty coal. Is this what we want for the Columbia Gorge? Barge after barge of dirty coal being transported down the Columbia, interfering with recreation — fishing, wind surfing — tribal fishing and endangered salmon? Then the dirty coal is transported to Port Westward for shipment to China. And this for 25 to 30 jobs at Port Westward?

I wonder how many jobs just the town of Hood River supports with its river-based recreation.

We are eliminating the use of coal in the United States. What we ship to China contributes to global warming worldwide — not just in China.

I would be interested in Johnson’s take on global warming. It does not sound as though she has made it a priority, or even a slightly significant issue.

I think of hardline Republicans being the ones to declare global warming a hoax or, if they believe in it, they use the mantra of “jobs, jobs, jobs” to justify dirty coal and explosive crude oil’s tragic effect fossil fuels are having on the earth.

Columbia Riverkeepers on Saturday, Sept. 13, sponsored a rally called “Walk the Tracks” to protest what the Port of St. Helens is doing with Global to expand oil train shipments to Port Westward. If you think oil trains have been an inconvenience now, just wait — you are going to see more and more of them. The honks and the waves from Columbia County cititzens passing by the rally showed how many citizens support efforts to halt oil trains in our county.

What’s your take on global warming and the environment? Are you a Republican or are you a Democrat? Maybe it’s time to become a Republican again, Betsy. You are out of touch with the majority of Columbia County citizens.

If it walks like a duck, talks like a duck ...

Cathy Pitkin


Forsythe’s real concern

Keith Forsythe argues against my position that broader environmental tariffs are needed for all industry including paper (see Spotlight Letters, “Mayo reads the WSJ, but does he get it?” April 12). Further, he suggests that selectively charging “dumping” to impose 42 percent tariffs on solar panels (see Spotlight Letters, July 27) and 72 percent tariffs on wind towers wasn’t playing favorites.

Weak green companies, like bankrupt Solyndra, receive taxpayer-guaranteed loans, tax credits for the customers, and now tariff restrictions to eliminate competitors. Add to that politicians, like the Pelosi family, that invest millions in these companies and then, when they go bankrupt, force themselves to the front of the line to be paid back first?

Sorry Keith. I’ll stick.

But let’s get down to what’s really bugging you. I see that you are the mining permit holder in Eagle Star Rock Products. Isn’t what you’re really bugged about is my position on raising depletion fees on gravel that you sell?

Don’t worry, Keith. We won’t just select your mine. All your competitors will pay as well. You’ll still be competitive.

I’ll go further on your behalf to suggest to other counties that they, too, impose depletion fees on their rock.

You’ll be OK.

Wayne Mayo


Callahan helped me, can help you too

Cathleen Callahan has lived, worked and contributed her time and energy to Columbia County for many years. She is well known in the community for her volunteer work and her commitment to the justice system. She has been proven to be a strong advocate for the average person in the county dealing with everything from business management to difficult family situations. She is compassionate and understanding in every situation. My case began in Columbia County, but quickly spread outside the county and involved the custody of my granddaughter after her parents were found to be deeply into drugs. I did not know which way to turn to help her, but Cathleen did. She handled everything discreetly and quickly so there was as little turmoil as possible for my then 8-year-old granddaughter.

I’m voting for Cathleen Callahan for circuit judge because mine is not the only story. She has helped many citizens of this community through some rough times, always with the most competence, compassion and respect. I can’t wait to see her bring her many years of experience as an attorney, and city prosecutor to the bench.

Jo Boge


Suspicious about Martwick’s sign story

Martwick’s recent ads offering a reward to be paid out of her campaign funds for the conviction of the person who “stole” her signs raises more questions about her character. Why did she wait four months to take out this ad? Is she really a victim? She gave signs out willingly and left lots of signs up weeks after the primary. Isn’t it her responsibility to remove the signs? Since she failed to do so, the signs were up illegally. Shouldn’t residents be allowed to remove signs in violation of the laws?

Political signs go missing all the time. Offering a reward for a conviction for missing signs is absurd. As a state employee, Martwick is paid about $120,000 per year, which is more than enough to replace a few signs. She is willing to pay a reward and seek conviction of the person who stole signs, when in fact there has been no theft. She abandoned these signs all over the county with no concern for the rules or respect for the community. Now she is accusing community members of stealing and offering campaign funds as reward. Not getting my vote.

Fred Creps


Need more evidence on climate change

Thank you for publishing the letter from Roy Fuller and the responses to what he wrote (see Spotlight Letters, “Why climate change skepticism is warranted,” Sept. 5).

As a working hydrologist for 30 years, I had to evaluate all of the available data. I do the same evaluation of what is reported as climate science.

Those who tell us the present climate is the result of human industry have not yet accounted for the abundant evidence from many sources of climate in centuries and millenniums past. The sources and details are too many to summarize in a short letter, but ought to be familiar to a climate scientist.

Climate scientists have not told us what thawed out the several great ice ages. Nor have they told us what effect volcanic eruptions and lava flows have, or how sunspot activity affects climate on Earth. Nor have they accounted for the evidence of climate variations in past centuries.

Apparently we are expected to believe without asking for evidence.

Eugene A. Oster


Mayo doesn’t listen

I’ve worked and volunteered in the healthcare industry in Columbia County for 39 years. I feel the role of a county commissioner is to hear all sides and make the best decision for our county. I personally do not feel that Wayne Mayo has the ability to make a good county commissioner. As a concerned citizen of Columbia County, I felt so strongly about this and Wayne, that I felt I had to write and let everyone know about my experience with him.

Wayne was trying to shut down funding for public health from the county, for his misplaced, ideological ideas about healthcare. Supporters of public health tried to have discussions with him about what care is provided in Columbia County and he refused to have discussions whatsoever. He was offered tours of the facilities and access to talk to the staff, and again it fell on deaf ears.

He is not a listener and should not represent Columbia County.

Ellen Lager


May our words be found ‘True’

Constituion Day was Sept. 17. On that day 227 years ago, George Washington pronounced the work of the Constitutional Convention complete and ready to be submitted to the people and the states for ratification or for rejection.

Somewhat later, the Constitution’s chief author, James Madison, being asked how to interpret the document, replied that it was easy given that each word had been individually considered, debated and settled upon; that each word was to be given only its simplest and plainest meaning; that each word was to be given its own real force; that these words did not hint at other things.

In other words, Madison said that the Constituion was an “honest” set of words that each member of the convention could stand behind. Furthermore, it is implicit that Madison and the others expected other Americans present and future to defend the integrity of the Constitution, else it should become a meaningless pliable set of words to be manipulated by would-be and actual tyrants.

I had been thinking on Constitution Day how important it is in our daily lives to speak words that are found to be true and to respect the intended true words of others. As citizens, we should recognize our duty in this regard respective of our U.S. Constitution.


Bob Ekstrom


Going with Heimuller

As a longtime resident of Columbia County and a retired public school administrator, it has been my pleasure to know Henry Heimuller and work with him on several important projects in service to the community.

Whether it is as a volunteer to children, seniors or the community in general, Henry is a man who rolls up his sleeves and pitches in to provide positive leadership as well as sweat equity for the common good where it is most needed.

In my career, I have worked with many public administrators of all types and effectiveness. The most successful understand that they must represent the best interests of ALL of their patrons. This is sometimes very difficult. Especially where the community is heavily polarized on a particular issue. Strong leaders like Henry do their homework including: real research, listening to public input and seeking consensus. Then they step up to make the best possible decisions under the circumstances, understanding that there will always be those who for their own interests or reasons may not agree. This is the essence of modern successful democracies and requires the kinds of respect, honest and transparent decisions that are characteristic of outstanding leaders.

For these reasons, Henry has my unqualified recommendation for Columbia County commissioner in the upcoming general election. He is stable and has the experience to help take Columbia County into a brighter tomorrow. Please join me in supporting him with your important vote.

Dennis G. Hart


Knows where she stands with Heimuller

It seems strange to me that while Mr. Wayne Mayo provides us with his ideas for how our democratic system should work, he doesn’t seem to have any idea about how county government really works. What I see is that he is throwing out a bunch of “hot-button” issues that he thinks will stick in order to get elected.

If he is successful with this strategy, what will happen if he does get elected? Anything? Or will we face the same mess we continually hear about everywhere else in this county. No action, road blocks, confusion, and no direction that anyone can figure out.

At least I know where I stand with Henry Heimuller. He is continually trying to do his best to inform me when I ask questions.

Over the last months, I have tried to talk with Mayo regarding his position on public transit, and other important issues, for Columbia County residents. He has continually avoided the issue and will not even talk about how seniors and others who need public transit will fair if he is elected in November. Why doesn’t he support those who have no way of even getting to the grocery store or those needing to get to doctor appointments? If the only vulnerable spot he sees in his opponent is his stance on the oil trains, what does that do for the rest of the many important issues that face our quality of life in Columbia County?

I am tired of politicians avoiding discussions that don’t seem to fit in with their own ideas of what is good for our county. How can I place my faith in Mayo if he doesn’t ask what types of services are needed or have any discussion about all of the issues?

The officials we elect must represent all of us and be willing to talk to all of us. Even though I support and will vote for Heimuller in November, I feel even he could benefit from a wider perspective.

And to answer Mr. Brian Rosenthal’s letter about “who Heimuller works for” (see Spotlight Letters, “Who does Heimuller work for?” Sept. 5), I would hope when I show my support for Heimuller, that Mr. Rosenthal understands that I think Heimuller is the best candidate that is running and that he is not beholden to me.

Thelma Bonar


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