Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor for Oct. 8

Kingsbury has lived up to promises

I wholeheartedly support Jeff Kingsbury, but I am unable to attend community forums because of my current deployment here in Kabul, Afghanistan.

However, as a serving member of the Armed Forces here in country, I am proud to have Kingsbury as my local hometown council member.

Shortly after the controversy surrounding the debacle with the USS Olympia, I had the pleasure of talking with Kingsbury when he ran for office the first time. He told me he was fiscally conservative and socially liberal on a variety of issues. He held to his word.

As a progressive leader in a diverse community as Olympia, he has maintained the sliver of integrity that is lacking in so many political leaders throughout our country. He does not succumb to intimidation (which he endured during the nonsense over the height restrictions). He stands his ground, and I believe he is indeed looking out for the future of our city without all the grandstanding by others.

The “me generation” is long gone. Kingsbury is the “we generation” which means we must do the right thing. We must get off our duffs and plan for the future. And we must focus on our community, which includes military, state workers, families, partnerships and lifestyles.

Jeff Kingsbury brings all this with him, and it would be a shame if he wasn’t around as part of the Olympia City Council.

DAVID GORDON, Olympia

Buxbaum has a vision for Olympia

Stephen Buxbaum is an outstanding candidate for Olympia City Council. He will bring a new style of leadership — one that is inclusive and collaborative, empowering community and neighborhood-driven solutions, and able to navigate the complexity of diverse needs.

His vision for Olympia includes a vibrant downtown with thriving local businesses, affordable downtown housing, preserving and enhancing the beauty of our natural setting, and working together to create a sustainable comprehensive plan.

This is not wishful thinking — with Buxbaum, one can count on vision becoming concrete reality. He has spent over 25 years in public service overseeing and securing financing for projects that have enhanced communities throughout Washington state. In the areas of sustainable development, affordable housing, homelessness issues, and assisting small businesses to create jobs he has an impressive list of accomplishments.

Buxbaum has contributed much to Olympia in the past and present. He helped raise funds and secure a permanent location for the Farmers Market. He assisted the beginning of many of our family farms through organizing one of the nation’s first organic marketing co- operatives. He continues to support and volunteer at Garden Raised Bounty and he serves on the board of the Dispute Resolution Center.

In running for City Council, Buxbaum is focusing his years of experience on the community he loves. As his sister, I can vouch for his keen intellect, wisdom, integrity and heartfelt desire to serve the public good.

JULIA BRAYSHAW, Olympia

Price controls needed on drugs

President Obama has no understanding of health care.

Health care costs have not risen as the president claims. In the 1960s, many people that had diseases simply died quickly, thus costs were kept to a minimum. As technology in medicine has evolved, many of the diseases from the 1970s and ’80s that would kill a person, are treatable with technology, so people live longer and use more technology.

If you want affordable health care, here it is. If an individual gets a serious illness, insurance companies must carry you for three years before they can drop you. Once an individual is dropped, allow them to buy into Medicare early.

The president should be putting price controls on drug manufacturers, not climbing into bed with them.

Drug manufacturers made $174 billion in Latin America last year and they are only offering to reduce drug costs by $80 billion over a decade. That’s pocket change compared with the U.S. market.

Why would the president not allow Medicare or Medicaid to negotiate lower prescription drug costs? If the U.S. set price controls on drug manufacturers then the government would not have to operate the Part D (prescription drugs) program of Medicare. That would reduce government spending because citizens would have discounted drug costs without government intervention.

Members of Congress don’t understand health care because they are too busy collecting $170,000 a year, shaking down lobbyists for campaign donations while flying around the world at taxpayers’ expense so their wives can shop abroad.

GARY SNELL, Olympia

Can’t force reverence

I took offense to Tim Rise’s letter wherein he argues that not rising for the flag or the national anthem or “God Bless America” fails to show respect for our nation.

It’s true that these objects represent the rights we have in America. But isn’t one of those rights the right to dissent?

If I don’t feel that I’m represented by “God Bless America,” a religious anthem that flies smack in the face of what I believe this country to be about, why should I be obligated to stand for it, or be ostracized for not doing so?

Respect for the symbols of our country is all well and good. But enforced reverence makes a mockery of what those symbols stand for.

JOHN MCFARLAND, Olympia

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