Sell you a bridge?
As a former resident of Ketchikan, Alaska, I become ever more distressed at references to the “Bridge to Nowhere,” even though I don't support the construction of the bridge. People using this description seem to have no knowledge of the situation. The bridge would not have gone “to nowhere.” It would, in fact, have connected Ketchikan with the rest of the world — hardly nowhere. The bridge would have connected Ketchikan, on Revillagigedo Island, with Ketchikan's airport on Gravina Island.
Passengers and freight currently travel conveniently between the city and the airport on the airport ferry, which I have ridden many times. The engineering of designing, placing, and building approaches for a bridge seems to me extraordinarily difficult in this particular setting. The ferry, though perhaps a bit slow, works very well, thank you. No bridge needed!
Watch the vote
The most patriotic action taken by any citizen in a democracy is to vote and a major responsibility of the government is to guarantee both an honest election and that every vote be counted in the manner cast by the voter.
The John McCain campaign is so sure of the six Arkansas electoral votes that they are pulling their resources out of our state, which to me is strange given the fact that in 2006 the voters bounced virtually every Republican and voted Democrat.
Do they know something that we should know? Purging of voters lists, “caging” including overseas military personnel, phony absentee ballots, contesting eligibility of people whose homes have been foreclosed on, faulty voting machines such as we saw in Benton County in 2006, or something else that we haven't even heard of yet being could be used to steal the presidential election Nov. 4, as was done in 2000 and 2004.
These un-American, third-world style tactics are being committed all over the country and there is no reason to believe that they are not occurring in Arkansas as well, especially when it's recalled that one of Karl Rove's buddies, Tim Griffin, a major architect of voter suppression, was once the federal prosecutor in this area, before being bounced.
Benjamin Franklin has been quoted as saying, “we have given you a Nation, now it is up to you to retain it.” This requires constant vigilance, citizen participation, and massive political activism, all needed more now, after the past eight years, than possibly any time in our history.
Consequently it becomes the obligation of every true patriot to protect their precious right to vote. No excuse is acceptable. Either you are a part of the solution, or a part of the continuing destruction caused by John McCain, the Republicans and their “blue dog” allies, including all the congressional incumbents in Arkansas.
It is imperative that every qualified voter register before Oct. 5. If already registered, check your voting status and that of family members, specifically those in the military or college. Talk to friends and family to make sure they do the same. Vote early, with paper ballots and do whatever else necessary to assure that your vote is counted.
Fouling the Natural State
I've recently moved to Arkansas from Wisconsin for a job relating to natural resources. I was excited to move to the self-proclaimed “Natural State.” The incredible diversity across the state was exactly what I was looking for along with the added bonus of the lack of snow and sub-zero temperatures.
Shortly after settling in to my new home I learned of a very controversial issue: Coal. There is a proposed new coal-fired power plant to be built in southern Arkansas.
I wondered how “The Natural State” could possibly let a known form of dirty energy be built. The first thing I thought of was how I wouldn't be able to eat fish due to heavy metal contamination. This was a concern in the Midwest but I was hoping it wouldn't be a problem here.
Regardless of the possibilities that could come from this facility the negatives surely outweigh them. I would hope the people who grew up here would feel just as strongly about this issue as I do.
Finishing the job
As all y'all undecided voters think about yer options for president in the next few weeks, bear in mind the recent presidential endorsements from the editors of Arkansas's largest daily paper. The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette endorsed George W. Bush in 2000 and again in 2004. If you are happy with the way things worked out with Bush, you'll certainly want to stick with the Dem-Gaz again this year as they will no doubt endorse former centrist John McCain and the “even more conservative than Bush” Sarah Palin. Maybe then we can completely wreck our economy by the end of 2009? Git-r-done folks!
David L. Humphrey
So what's new? We've had a maverick in the White House for the past 8 years. Dear God, what has that brought us? War, recession, massive debt, unemployment, astronomical energy prices, one corporate bailout after another, loss of our leadership in the world.
I don't need another president that has this “go it alone, shoot from the hip” mentality. I don't need or want another president who spouts patriotic phrases just to get our blood boiling and keep us, the public, suspicious of anything that it can say is un-American. I don't need or want another president who hides his or her true intentions because being a MAVERICK relies on getting your way, by whatever means possible. It means keeping us, the public — those who vote — in the dark.
“Thanks, but no thanks” to four more years of our country being dragged along in this direction. And, above all, I don't want things sprung on me! The choice to put someone in the position of the vice presidency who has not come before the public to be vetted for more than a few weeks before a critical election tells me that we can expect more of this kind of decision making.
What I do want is leadership that listens to many diverse points of view, is open to true discussion and helps people find solutions to the problems that threaten our planet and our prosperity.