Letters to the Editor for June 25, 2011

June 25, 2011

Watch for traps

On June 20 my dog got caught in a steel-jawed trap set along the edge of Farmers Irrigation ditch between Portland Drive and Riverdale Road. Luckily, we were able to get her out of the water and she survived with only a badly injured foot. Had I been a minute or two later in finding her she would have drowned.

Steel-jawed traps are deadly and can easily cause the death of a pet or child. Members of the public should be cautious walking with children or pets in the vicinity of area ditches and streams.

Bill Mellow

Hood River

Scare tactics

In response to Sandra Ihrig's letter, "Say 'no' to more waste" (June 18) I would have to agree. I myself am not sure I want more radioactive waste in the Northwest.

She is right, the first responders would be local; but to say they would in turn infect hospital workers, then their families, then the local community is ludicrous. They have measures in place to handle that. That would be like saying I microwave a potato, take it out and stand it next to a raw potato and it in turn will get radiation.

She did not say what her personal experience was to radioactive exposure; was she the potato in the microwave or the raw potato next to it? I wonder, do you weigh more than you should if you have elevated levels of heavy metals in your system? Am I going to die from fishing with lead sinkers? Am I the potato?

You should stick to facts next time instead of fear tactics and it will sound more intelligent.

Jim Burdick


Why buy bottled water?

Recently, a very good (in my opinion) commentary in a regional newspaper asked the question, "Why does the Oregon state government spend $90,000 on bottled water for its employees?" Further, it went on to say that this action insinuates that our public water system is inferior and sends a wrong message about the value and importance of public water systems.

Additionally, why would anyone in the state of Oregon pay a single penny for good, clean, cool, abundant water that flows semi-freely from every faucet in every home, office or restaurant in the state?

I just don't get it. Do you?

Phil Jensen

Hood River

Show consequences

Regarding the four teens charged with the Odell vandalism rampage (Page one, June 22 issue), please give equal front page treatment to the court's final disposition. Publicity could go a long ways toward deterring such ridiculous future actions.

Dave Dockham

Hood River

Many added

to debt

I would like to comment on Mike Farmer's letter in the June 11 edition.

The first thing that caught my eye in your article is that you chastise "liberals" for doing the same thing to Mrs. Palin as you did in your article to President Obama.

Mrs. Palin put herself and her family into the national spotlight and is earning millions of dollars doing it, she is a public figure; she even abandoned her governorship mid-term in this pursuit. Mocking criticisms comes with the territory these days and I believe this behavior is just an extension of what we see our politicians doing to each other.

The problem with your criticism of President Obama is that you didn't present any facts to back up your statement. So I will.

Yes, we are in serious trouble concerning our national debt, and as a Democrat I am not happy with many of President Obama's decisions. However, if you look back to the 1960s and President Kennedy, each Democratic president lowered our debt-to-GDP ratio while each (yes, all of them) Republican president raised the national debt-to-GDP ratio.

President Obama is the first Democratic president since Kennedy to increase the debt-to-GDP ratio. You can view these facts on the federal government's CBO Historical Budget page. The current national debt load for each individual is stated as $44,900. This would be an accrual of the debts of all presidents, including President Obama, and not JUST President Obama.

I would also like to add that the current proposal to raise the national debt ceiling is being met with sharp criticism from Republicans, including our own Greg Walden.

However, I find it very interesting that the raising of the debt ceiling was supported by Walden seven times under President Bush. This understandably had to be done because we were giving the biggest tax breaks to the top earners while starting two wars. This has never been done in our nation's history and one of the biggest contributors to our current debt problems.

Peter Dallman

Hood River

Latest stories

Latest video:

Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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