Letters - Tucson Local Media: Editorials


Letters to the editor published in the September 22, 2010, edition of The Explorer.

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Posted: Tuesday, September 21, 2010 11:00 pm

OV council knows it must define problem

The essential difference between a problem and a solution is that most people understand the solution. Solutions are the low fruit of the problem-solving process. They are everywhere — more money, more people, more technology, more taxes, less taxes, more sales, etc. etc.

The most difficult, and often, the most overlooked element of problem-solving is valid problem definition. That is why it was very encouraging most members of the town council seemed to understand this and decided not to adopt the knee-jerk action proposed by the mayor relative to the DRB issue.

During their deliberation, the council members expressed several possible reasons the DRB may not be meeting expectations. Their discussion amplified the need for more analysis before implementing a solution.

The solution proposed by the mayor is counter to recent research results from the Kettering Foundation, the Pew Research Center, and even the American Planning Association. Their research reveals that residents want more, not less, involvement in determining the direction and future of their communities.

So, kudos to those council members who understand that effective problem-solving requires discipline in order to define the root cause of a problem. I only hope they also appreciate what Albert Einstein meant when he noted, "Complex problems cannot be solved by the same level of thinking that created them."

Stephen Fansler, Oro Valley

You can pick our friends, not your family

Yes, it's true, Koch Industries is one of the largest financial contributors to the infamous Tea Party hucksters.

Remember, you can pick your friends but you can't choose your relatives. Koch Industries is an embarrassment to family, friends and to my country.

Fred J. Koch, Oro Valley

Fire alarms are sounding; time for Dem response

A New York periodical recently exposed Koch Industries of Wichita, Kan., as providing the funding for the Tea Party.

The Koch company was founded by Fred Koch, a Chemical Engineer, and is now owned by two of his sons, Charles and David. With annual revenues of $100 billion, they are the ninth-richest men in the world and third in this country.

They deal in the oil industry. Fred went to the USSR to show them how to build refineries, but Stalin nationalized them.

Fred learned Stalin's dirty tricks, i.e., lies, political tyranny, fear mongering, and hatred. He found all the tools he needed in the Communist regime to influence government and public opinion. He taught his sons to operate covertly through think-tanks and front companies. Fred was a charter member of the John Birch Society, which instigated the Senator McCarthy Communism fears.

The Kochs are masters of deceit. They "frame" issues to disguise their true purpose. They have a personal vendetta against the Democrats and spend some of their billions to bring down Obama.

Through one of their many front groups, "Americans for Prosperity," they fund the Tea Party, busing them around the country. Hatred has been framed as just a tea party, and Democrats have been framed as socialists, communists and Nazis. The Kochs funded efforts to bring down climate change and alternate fuel legislation.

The Kochs have created a new political party, framed with the innocuous "neo-con" name, which incorporates conservatives, the Tea Party, and the John Birch Society ideology to limit government to military, police, judicial, and political obfuscation functions.

Beck incites the angst of his voters with his vision that the Democratic demons will instigate a Reichstag moment. Criminals (like Nancy Pelosi?) will set fire to the capital building and blame it on the Republicans to get control of the government as Hitler did in Germany.

It's time for Democrats to respond to the fire alarms and protect their social institutions.

Ben Love, Oro Valley

Just ordinary folks who don't want the landfill

I wanted to respond to comments made by Arthur Phillips, SaddleBrooke, in the Aug. 25 Voices section.

He asked, "Can the Explorer be so biased as to give a couple of rabid residents a weekly forum to rant and rave about the much-needed waste reclamation landfill?" He is obviously referring to the proposed Marana landfill. Unfortunately, Mr. Phillips may have been absent that day in elementary school were we learned about democracy, freedom of speech, and freedom of the press.

I commend the Explorer and the other news outlets where ordinary folks have an opportunity to share their facts and opinions. You see, Mr. Phillips, people from all walks of life have this opportunity. Yes, even you. I respect your right to share your comments with the readers, even though I may not agree with everything you say.

Is everyone who thinks differently than you a rabid resident? So far, only the folks who want the landfill have resorted to name-calling.

Mr. Phillips goes on to say that "this waste site is needed by thousands of residents and businesses." Does he even know where the garbage is going today? Why all of a sudden is the site needed by thousands?

I imagine it is very easy to think like he does when all he can see is million-dollar homes. Would Mr. Phillips like to have a developer decide to establish a landfill at the foot of the Catalina Mountains near his home? That location would be just as inappropriate as the proposed site on Vice Mayor Herb Kai's land.

Mr. Phillips finished by writing "to satisfy these people on Silverbell West, we would have to fly the garbage to the moon. Get real, Storzer." I can tell you this, Mr. Phillips. The opposition has offered an alternative site but we had not yet considered the moon.

Please take the time to read the United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Then check back often for new information for ordinary folks from ordinary folks who want to share their facts and opinions with you.

Steve Storzer, Silverbell West

It's right and proper to look at 'fill facts

The pro-Marana landfill folks want facts rather than opinions, and that is right and proper. Facts should be substantiated with attribution, which the opponents of the dump have done, but which is lacking from the Dumpsters. The pro-landfill lobby not only fails to cite sources for their assertions, but sometimes comes up with unsupported " facts" no one else can find.

For example: Dumpsters claim that there will be no leachate (garbage juice) that might contaminate our aquifer because of our desert conditions. Opponents cited a World Health Organization monograph (Taylor & Allen, 2006) which included a study of a desert landfill in Gaza, an area with two-season rainfall about the same as Marana's. Researchers were surprised to find almost as much leachate in the dry season as the wet.

The Dumpsters responded that the landfill in question accepted liquid waste. I would like their source for that alleged information, because it does not appear in the WHO monograph.

Then the Dumpsters say, well, there won't be any leachate, but if there is leachate, the liner system will catch it all.

Fact: All liners will leak (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency).

Fact: All liners will leak (liner manufacturer Phillips Petroleum).

Fact: All liners will leak (World Health Organization).

Consultant William Seucup said at the Dumpsters' open house, "You can't eliminate all risks." Yes you can, and that's a fact, not an opinion. Don't build a giant garbage dump over a rising aquifer in a flood plain by a major wash next door to 100 families.

With Pima County committed to building a transfer station with existing bond money at the Tangerine Landfill and accepting waste there "for the indefinite future," there is no reason to continue pursuing the private, for-profit, trash-importing Marana Regional Landfill, and that, also, is a fact.

Albert Vetere Lannon, Picture Rocks

The use of scripture in campaigning

Well, primary season is over. For a moment, I would like to focus on the hundreds of e-mails that I have received supporting the different candidates. We each have our favorite and unfortunately, there is a winner and a loser.

I was rather intrigued by e-mails using scripture to potentially justify conservative views. Personally I do not believe that this is the "real issue."

For example, recently I received this Biblical quote: " The heart of the wise turn right. The heart of a fool turns left." (Ecclesiastes 10:2) Biblical quotes are sent without understanding their purpose and intent. The focus here is on the heart of humankind relative humankind's personal relationship to our Heavenly Father.

As many of you know, the book of Ecclesiastes was written by King Solomon. When reading this book, one must understand Solomon's quest. The intent of this scripture was not nor does it focus on "the conservative right" or "the liberal left," but rather the intent of an individual's heart. The bottom line for King Solomon was this: "The conclusion, when all has been heard is: fear God and keep his commandments because this applies to every person. For God will bring every act to judgment, everything that was hidden whether it is good or evil." Ecclesiastes 12:13-14

Perhaps a more pertinent scripture would be this: "When the righteous rule, the people rejoice; when the wicked rule, the people groan." Proverbs 29:2.

The categories are "righteous" and "wicked" not Republican, not Democrat, not conservative, not moderate, not liberal not right or left. Something that really needs to be considered by all of us today and unfortunately, the righteous are ridiculed, critiqued and condemned by many.

I have often wondered how well a God-fearing man or woman would be received by any political party in this land serving at any level today.

Bob Black, Oro Valley

Charge people for ambulance, fire dispatches

According to my current homeowners policy, my insurance policy will cover the costs of fire departments coming to my house (up to $500), and an amount for ambulance services (see conditions below).

Why don't our governments / service providers charge for these services in lieu of raising our property taxes? Make the users pay. Police services should also be billed, especially when criminal conduct, e.g., meth lab explodes in house, and / or negligence is involved, e.g., leaving unattended items on stove which leads to fire.

"… Additional coverages

4. Fire Department Service Charge.

We will pay up to $500 for your liability assumed by contract or agreement for fire department charges incurred when the fire department is called to save or protect covered property from a loss under Section 1. Losses we cover.

This coverage is additional insurance and does not reduce the amount of insurance. No deductible applies to this coverage.

Section II — Liability coverages

Coverage F – Medical Payments to Others

We will pay the necessary medical expenses that are incurred or medically ascertained within three years from the date of an accident causing "bodily injury." Medical expenses means reasonable charges for medical, surgical, x-ray, dental, ambulance, hospital, professional nursing, prosthetic devices and funeral services. This coverage does not apply to you or regular residents of your household except 'residence employees.' As to others, the coverage applies only: …"

Note: I believe my auto policy has similar coverages.

Tom Sander, Tucson

Mayor should be listening to council members

I attended the Sept. 1 Oro Valley Town Council and found the issue on the citizen volunteer boards to be very disjointed.

Mayor Hiremath, when trying to rationalize his position of eliminating boards and commissions, said "Part of what we have to do is evaluate systems, and since I personally became mayor on 6/2/10, I have found out that we have no systems that are repeatable to ensure repetitive success, whether you are an individual, town department or town government as a whole."

If this is true … why did the mayor vote not to fund the police management study? This was a great opportunity to independently evaluate our biggest department and biggest of the general fund (44 percent. He also gave an analogy about clearing out the garage prior to cleaning it. If he is aware of this, then why is he against zero-based budgeting?

These commissions and boards have been with us a long time and seemed to be working fine under Mayor Loomis.

Councilman Joe Hornat was one of the few to have a grasp of handling the situation (attending most town meetings and being on various boards and commissions). … provide training for individuals that are appointed, rather than "cleaning house." So does that mean the mayor wants to remove members of the Oro Valley Police Department and other departments and have them reapply? Mr. Mayor needs to listen to his council members, as they appear to have a good grasp on this situation.

Geri Ottoboni, Oro Valley

Kelly v. Kelly? regardless, she must defend record

An interesting election event for Arizona District 8 could have been in the making. As some of you know, Rep. Giffords is married to Captain Mark Kelly. If Giffords used her married name, as most married women do, we would be having a Kelly vs. Kelly contest.

Regardless of what name she uses, she has to run on her voting record.

It would be nice to be represented by a fiscal conservative. No way can she claim to be one after voting for three budget-busting pieces of legislation. The public will remember that she has never seen a spending bill she did not like and voted for cap and trade, the stimulus bill and Obamacare. All of these were against the majority of public consent.

This is not representation. In her re-election speeches and her campaign material, she needs to justify the reasoning for her votes and explain what benefit District 8 citizens will accrue from this kind of representation. Voters will remember that past performance predicts future action.

Dr. Joseph Holden, Catalina

That's what snakes eat

I just want to add my two cents worth as a hunter, fisher, outdoorsman, etc.

Do not worry about the "negative" people, what you were showing was a part of nature, right, not a made-up picture because that "is" how snakes eat.

Those "negatives" need to teach their kids about what goes on in nature. They need to go live on an "old style" farm so they can teach their kids on why Billie's horse likes Sarah's horse, and why the cows try to "ride" each other.

In a nutshell, they need to quit shielding their kids from real "life."

Earl Colvin, Tucson

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