Letters to Editor

Climate Scare

Regarding Dec. 5 article “National Climate Assessment warns of extremes beyond weather”: I’m sorry to see another scary article about climate change. One claim in the article was that the climate is changing faster now than at any point in the history of modern civilization, and human activity is supposed to be the cause of it. This is a spurious assertion, as there is no way to test the assertion. Humans cannot be removed from the equation and the results measured. Furthermore, there are a lot of years before modern civilization in which it is completely unknown how the climate behaved.

Given the history of doomsday predictors in modern civilization I don’t think we should attempt to remove most human activity within the next 10 years. The 1968 best seller “The Population Bomb” turned out to be a dud. When Saddam Hussein lit up the Kuwaiti oil fields the predictions were for global catastrophe, and that did not happen.

—Andrew Woodard, Tucson

Axing Volunteers

One of the greatest assets of the Town of Oro Valley is the large number of citizen volunteers.  I don’t know the total number of volunteers or the hours that they work, but both are significant and the resultant financial savings to Oro Valley is huge. Many of the volunteers for the Town do not have term limits. For instance the volunteer police serve for as long as they wish and are capable of doing the required duties. The library volunteers likewise don’t have any set time conditions placed on them. However, all members chosen to serve on a town board or commission have term limits. All are granted a two or three year service period with options for an additional term. You may also reapply after a one year grace period. The third two year option was reinstated when requests for new volunteers went unanswered and it was realized that having experienced volunteers was a valuable asset. 

I can only speak from my experience on the Planning and Zoning Commission. I was asked to apply for the in the fall of 2000. I did so, was appointed and served for four years and seven months.  In 2011, I began another three year term, and again in 2016 I began my current two year term. That’s a total of 115 months. My first 18 months were difficult. The language of planning and zoning to most lay people is difficult at best.  Zoning codes are written in a combination of “legaleze,” “zoneze” and “plannereze.” My point being that most new members of the commission aren’t really effective for several months. 

With this as a backdrop, I am stunned that the new council has chosen, on their first agenda, to dump all third term appointees/applicants. Is this their highest priority? Is this the best use of their time? Evidently it is to Mayor Winfield and Councilmember Barrett. It was they who asked that this item be placed on the agenda. Hell, we can’t even get the new mayor to be at the lighting ceremony of the town Christmas tree. He is too busy. But he has time to axe volunteers.

You have four new members on the Town Council with little or no local governance experience, and the first optional item on an agenda to gut boards and commissions of experienced personnel.  This is truly a sad start. You have to ask yourself, what is the motivation behind this?

Buckle up folks, the power grab has started. This is going to be a rough ride. But then we only have to wait six months to file recall papers.

—Don Cox, Oro Valley

Judging Trump

In an opinion piece in the Explorer in November 2016, this reader asked should we give President Trump a chance, as Republicans gave to President Obama? The opinion piece quoted from the book “Don’t Not Ask What Good We Do.” 

The day of his election, a group of  Republicans met to undermine and destroy the presidency of Obama. So is President Trump worthy of a chance? Let’s see. We have a president who seems incapable of ever telling the truth. “What we are seeing and reading is not the truth, the press is the enemy of the people, fake news, voter fraud, McCain not a war hero he was captured.”

The Affordable Care Act is still the law of the land. Th beautiful wall Mexico is paying for is just talk. Tax cuts for middle class, with $1.5 trillion deficit. Budget deficits of about 4 to 5 percent,  likely be an effort in 2019 to cut spending on entitlement programs. 

So what’s the President’s real problems? Exaggerated sense of self-importance; occupied with fantasies of success, brilliance; inability to recognize the feelings of others; monopolizes and belittles people as inferior; believes others envy him; acts in arrogant manner, conceited, boastful and pretentious. 

These are just a few symptoms of a narcissistic personality disorder.  In the Dunning Kruger effect, the problem isn’t just being misinformed, but unaware they are completely misinformed.  

—Clyde R. Steele,  Oro Valley

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