Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor for Aug. 20

Big egos lead to big carbon footprints

A recent editorial pointed out that New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg has contradicted his carbon emission reducing anti-idling law by allowing his SUV transport vehicles to regularly idle from 10 minutes to more than an hour while waiting for him.

California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is an example of another public figure who needs to do a better job of walking the talk.

Gov. Schwarzenegger was responsible for a law that would make California the first state in the United States to reduce carbon emissions to 1990 levels by the year 2020 and to reduce these emissions to 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050.

Gov. Schwarzenegger has required California citizens and businesses to significantly cut back on their carbon emissions, while he has chosen to continue to produce one of California’s largest individual carbon footprints by commuting daily between his Los Angeles home and his Sacramento office in his own private jet.

It is apparent that Gov. Schwarzenegger is either a carbon emission hypocrite or a person who actually believes that his large individual carbon emissions are not a real threat to the environment.

KEN SCHLICHTE, Tumwater

Parking tickets on a hot day – not cool

Shame on the Lacey Police Department for ticketing families cooling off at the Long Lake County Park swim beach on opening day of the Thurston County Fair next door. Someone had blocked off half the parking for no apparent reason, and then lay in wait for folks to find creative parking solutions.

Around 4 p.m., police arrived and started writing overly expensive parking tickets – on the hottest day of the year.

I was one of the lucky ones who happened to leave at the right time and probably just barely missed out on a parking ticket.

In the future, how about thinking ahead and providing adequate or even additional parking capacity at the area’s most popular swimming beach? In these times of tight budgets, surely one parking monitor, perhaps a volunteer, would be a cheaper response than the four or more responding officers, all in separate cars, some unmarked.

It’s a thought.

GREGORY SMITH, Olympia

Fix poverty to reduce health care costs

Health care is a major user of this nation’s dollars. Twenty percent of the nation’s revenue is spent providing health care.

What makes health care an issue is millions of baby boomers beginning to retire. With health care costs rising around 7 percent per year, not enough money will be available to cover them.

The president wants to penalize Americans that don’t have health care insurance? Maybe the president should pay more attention to the economy and finding jobs for people so they can buy insurance.

To fix health care, you must have tort reform covering malpractice insurance and a cap on pain and suffering. Capping pain and suffering and providing malpractice insurance reform would reduce health care costs for all Americans immediately while providing the time necessary to create a proper health care plan over two years.

How many people have tried finding a primary care physician in this county willing to accept new Medicare patients due to low reimbursement rates?

Now the president wants to reduce Medicare reimbursements further? What you will get is more people without insurance coverage as they are dropped by their providers. The president fails to understand, when your nation is broke, you can’t put money into peoples’ pockets for health care.

If you want to reduce health care costs cheaply, fix poverty because its the greatest factor in obesity. Obesity costs the health care system billions of dollars each year. Poverty is the greatest factor for obesity because junk food is easily affordable.

GARY SNELL, Olympia

Vote with your fork: Shun farmed fish

Wild, hatchery or farmed salmon: It’s our choice.

Now is the time for environmentalists and consumers to demand that harvestable and sustainable populations of Washington state’s wild salmon and steelhead be restored, especially given the growing environmental and financial impacts associated with hatchery and farm produced salmon.

As a taxpayer and lifetime citizen of Washington, it disturbs me no end to see inferior, farm-raised Atlantic salmon as the only salmon choice on menus in many, if not most, Northwest restaurants. This is wrong!

Whatever happened to expecting a quality meal when dining out? Washington’s wild salmon must be restored to harvestable numbers so consumers can once again enjoy this tasty and nutritious Northwest treat.

The continued reliance on hatchery-reared salmon and even worse, farm-raised Atlantic salmon, must end in order to recover the dwindling numbers of wild chinook, coho, sockeye, chum and pink salmon along with their not-too-distant cousin, the mighty steelhead.

I encourage you to vote with your fork and not order farm-raised, Atlantic salmon when you go out on the town. You’ll be very disappointed if you do.

And, when you get a chance, please do what you can to restore our wild salmon and steelhead.

You’ll be very satisfied that you did.

JAMES WILCOX, Olympia

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