Letters to the Editor

Jan 18, 2018

Making America great again?

When a New Year begins, Americans reflect back on the year.  2017 was the Trump year, a year to never be forgotten in the history of America. It was a year that all living Americans had never seen.

Americans had been lead to believe that we were the best country in the world, and then Trump comes along and tells us differently.

Trump's campaign slogan, “Make America great again” assumed that America was not great. So we asked, what is wrong with America? Trump tells us all the “bad” things in America: the news media, the Democrats, Republicans who do not agree with him and show loyalty, the FBI, DOJ, NAFTA, TPP, EPA, government ethical committee, trade agreements, ally countries, government regulations protecting the water, land and air, a broken infrastructure, immigrants (Muslim and Mexicans), the black movement, NFL, Paris Climate Agreement, ACA, public education system, VA, UN, NATO, underfunded military, law and order, voter fraud and, of coarse, Hillary and Obama.

But don't worry, he assured us that he would fix it. He would drain the swamp. After all, he had life experiences that prepared him for the presidency: infidelity, bankruptcy, racism, 300 businesses in 23 foreign countries, over 3,000 legal cases, hidden tax returns, non payment of workers, blamed his partners for his failures, 17 women accused him of sexual harassment and then to top if off, he proudly admits it.

Oh yes, and he claims to be a billionaire, but shows no proof of it.

During the campaign, Trump vowed to drain the swamp. He chose unqualified millionaires and billionaires as advisers and as heads of government agencies. Men and women with foreign business and investments.

Men and women loyal to his agenda to understaff government agencies, eliminate workers safety and health regulations, eliminate water, land and air regulations, appoint racist and sexist judges, repeal ACA, allow guns for the mentally ill and no gun controls, dump coal and oil sludge into the rivers, etc.

Make America great again?

The lack of humanity is blatant. Wake up, Americans. Without safety from pollution, without health care, with fearful Americans carrying guns to protect themselves, with Americans afraid of Americans, with polluted air, water and land, with low wages in an inflated economy, with our neighbors allied with Saudi Arabia, China or Russia, with nuclear threats towards other countries and with unethical billionaires running the show, having a job, as Trump promised,  won't save Americans or America.

Susan Pedersen


Oprah poll was too broad

Some of the polls that the Edmonds Beacon posts, while almost always interesting, seem to me to be too broad to result in useful information.

A good example is last week’s poll: “Oprah Winfrey has been mentioned as a possible presidential candidate. Would you vote for her?” Would I like her to run?  No. Would I vote for her? If she ran, and her opponent were to be someone I distrust, then yes, perforce.

Why do I not want her to run? Because, as an analogy, I choose as my dentist someone with experience in dentistry, not someone I find charming and often agree with – and the same with something as complex as governing.

I do not mean to debate Oprah, but rather, I would like to point out that polls that are too broad often result in simplistic results. The “why” is often more informative than the blunt “yes” or “no” with which some polls force you to respond.

Nathaniel Brown


It’s not conservative to ignore facts

The global increase in temperature is measurable. That means more thermal energy to drive weather processes (processes, not the temperature of a particular day).

The change in NW snowpack and spring runoff timing is measurable, so our dam and reservoir investments become less effective at water management. The increase in CO2 in the air and oceans is measurable. Atmospheric CO2 has cycled in a 200-300 parts-per- million (ppm) range for 400,000 years, tracking several ice ages, but since the industrial revolution began burning coal and oil CO2 has shot above 400 ppm in only a couple hundred years.

That added CO2 is from burning fossil fuels because the measurable carbon isotope mix has changed. Some of that added CO2 dissolves into the oceans as carbonic acid which measurably affects the ability of sea life to build shells.

These are facts. It is not being conservative to ignore facts.

On the other hand, Michael Crichton referenced in last week’s letters was a very successful novelist. His book “State of Fear” is fiction, no more a climate textbook than “Jurassic Park” tells you how to build a T-Rex. Instead, “State of Fear” is an excellent example of how to distort data by cherry-picking location and time span to misrepresent what is happening, to serve his science fiction novel.

To quote another novelist, Terry Pratchett, “Things are not as they seem. They are what they are.”

Humanity is conducting a planetary re-engineering project with significant consequences.

Success needs a discussion grounded in engineering terms: tradeoffs, values, cost/benefit, science, risk management and elegance.

We are already paying for climate change. Our choice is whether to pay now or later, and how much. The human and financial cost is likely to be lower if we work smart now rather than handling it in crisis mode later.

Bill Ray

Mountlake Terrace


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