Out of touch

Marty Trillhaase was spot on in his Feb. 28 “Cheers and Jeers” when he criticized Thyra Stevenson and Mike Kingsley for voting to freeze the property tax portion of all taxing districts’ budgets (except schools) for one year. The bill, HB 409, provides no solution whatsoever to the problems it seeks to address.

On Feb. 20, Stevenson, in a rare phone call, told me she did not expect the bill to be voted on by the House after she voted to send it to the floor with a “do pass” and her full support. How wrong she was. She never once inquired as to how the bill would affect our fire district.

When Kingsley was asked what inquires he had made to determine how the bill would affect our fire district or other taxing districts, he avoided the question. His poppycock answer in part was: “After much thought, I voted with the majority of my colleagues as to what I thought best for all Idahoans.”

Who does he think he represents?

He answered that “… We work for 1.8 million people as well as our local districts.”

It is quite clear that his concern for the people in Boise and southern Idaho out weigh his constituents who voted to put him in office.

At the very least, Stevenson and Kingsley should educate themselves as to how legislation they vote on affects the people back home.

We now know they do not know. Do they even care ?

Steve Rice


Bernie pushes communism

What hath Vermont wrought?

Bernie Sanders, champion of communism, for starters.

When he flew the Russian flag at his Burlington office while mayor, did the Vermont voters chuckle, elbow each other, and say “That’s our Bernie. Quite a character, isn’t he?”

Here are some easily verifiable numbers about Russia:

l Between 1917 and 1953, there were 15 million-plus deaths (“officially”).

l  1.7 million died in the Gulag. There were between 3.3 million and 7.5 million famine deaths in the Ukraine and 800,000 political deaths. ...

l  By 1987, that number was estimated to be 20 million to 60 million.

l  Even until the last decade, mass graves were being discovered, requiring constant upward adjustment of the death toll. ...

Wonder why or how any American or any decent, discerning human being could support Russia and/or communism?

Why were these people killed? Were they the wrong class, nationality, race or religion? Were they inquiring about a missing friend or relative. ...

Yes, Sanders self-identifies as a Democratic Socialist, not a communist. But he has campaigned for and supported the American Communist Party and candidates all his political life.

Lenin, when asked to define communism, said, “To each according to his need.”

Sounds grand: Bernie “needs” three homes, to fly first class on commercial lines and to lease private jets.

Socialism inevitably leads to tyranny. In Cuba, Russia, Venezuela and China, leaders lead opulent lives while depriving “their people” of the most basic of dreams, let alone necessities.

No, Bernie. Not here.

Frances Rotter


Giving it away

Midas/Barrick isn’t in Idaho just to help clean up the mess at Stibnite and to love salmon, as their public relations people would lead us to believe. They are here to take advantage of our hopelessly antiquated 1872 Mining Law and to make money.

Canada, where Midas has its headquarters, imposes royalties on hardrock minerals mined from public lands. But not the U.S. We just give the stuff away, in keeping with the 1872 Mining Law that has been on the books for almost 150 years.

Our Congress seems unable to comprehend that this is no longer the Wild West and that the frontier days are long gone. The law needs to be revised and brought up to date in keeping with today’s reality.

Midas states that it has plans to mine in excess of 4 million ounces of gold during the 12-year life of the mine. Currently the spot price of gold is hovering around $1,500 per ounce.

This is a lot of money to be giving away free of charge to a foreign mining company.

Earl Dodds


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