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Letters - August 10, 2005

4/H and FFA thanks

Special thanks to the community for their wonderful support of the kids’ 4-H/FFA auction. It was refreshing to see the kids get a good price for their market animals.

The list of buyers this year, both individuals and businesses, was over 100. Special thanks to Les Schwab, Hanel Development, Hood River Ford, Northwest Windshields, Safeway, Little Bit Ranch Supply, Hood River Supply and several others who made multiple purchases.

I know the participants appreciate your support very much. Hope to see you all next year and bring your friends.

Tony White

Hood River

Jam at Billiards

The Blue Grass Jam has been playing at Hood River Billiards on the second and fourth Thursday of every month for the last two years. I am writing to invite everyone to this Thursday’s Jam at Hood River Billiards, which is located at First and Cascade streets, to the rear of the Mt. Hood Railroad parking lot. I also want to thank, on behalf of the Jam participants, Cristy Barsky for making her wonderful establishment available to us. I want to encourage folks to patronize Cristy’s business. She sells some of the finest pool tables I’ve ever seen! And you can play there on Wednesday evenings and all day Saturday. Support your local businesses and musicians!

Jack Shepherd

Hood River

‘Victory is in sight’

“Victory is in sight.” (Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara: Feb. 19, 1963.)

“I have never been more encouraged in my four years in Vietnam.” (General William Westmoreland: Nov. 15, 1967.)

As we know, the Vietnam war (or the “American War,” as the Vietnamese call it) dragged on until 1975, to become one of the longest ones in which the U.S. has fought. We are now two years into the Iraq war, and like in Vietnam, are fighting an intangible foe (terrorism, instead of communism). Each time we kill a desperate person who has turned to terrorism, we direct more hatred toward us, and create a fertile environment for terrorism to grow.

Here are some quotes from our new “American War.”

“Mission Accomplished.” (Banner hung on the U.S.S. Lincoln aircraft carrier, May 1, 2003.)

“Major combat operations in Iraq have ended.” (President Bush, May 1, 2003.)

“We feel right now that we have, as I mentioned, broken the back of the insurgency.” (Marine Lt. Gen. John Sattler, Nov. 18, 2004.)

Same rhetoric, different decade. Time to get out of Iraq, and bring our troops home. Iraq didn’t attack us. Remember 9-11 — none of those guys were from Iraq.

Brian Carlstrom

Hood River

CAFTA a win-win

On behalf of the Oregon Farm Bureau, I want to express my thanks to Congressman Greg Walden for agreeing to support the Dominican Republic/Central America Free Trade Agreement, as well as to Senators Gordon Smith and Ron Wyden for their support in an earlier vote in the U.S. Senate.

For nearly 20 years the countries of Central America have been sending their agricultural products into the U.S. market duty-free under the Caribbean Basin Initiative. In addition, a free trade agreement recently struck between Canada and Costa Rica has created a 15 percent price advantage for Canadian potato growers who export to Central America. This new trade agreement will bring that potato business back to Oregon farmers, while eliminating the tariffs on all other agricultural products either immediately or over time. This is simple fairness for our farmers.

These countries have been exporting free-of-charge to the U.S. market for years; now our farmers will have that same benefit. That’s a win-win.

Barry Bushue

President of the Oregon Farm Bureau

Boring

Honesty lives

Last week we had an experience that we want to share with others.

We had an envelope containing cash on a shelf above the paper recycling bin. Somehow the envelope fell into the bin and we didn’t notice it.

The two men who picked up the recyclables found and returned it to us.

Thank you, Adan Renteria and Jose Torres.

Honesty lives.

Paul and Letha Buchanan

Odell

Build more trails

I am excited and pleased to hear that Hood River Valley Parks and Recreation has made the establishment of district-wide trails one of its top priorities. Increasing bicycling and walking trails in Hood River can help reduce traffic congestion, air and noise pollution, our use of petroleum, as well as the need for additional parking. Parking is becoming increasingly difficult in downtown Hood River, so let’s work to make alternate modes of transportation, such as walking and bicycling, more realistic and safe. Increasing opportunities to burn calories rather than petrol can also have the benefit of improving Hood River residents’ health and well-being through regular exercise.

My wife and I found ourselves in a similar situation as Mr. Kenward (Hood River News letters July 20). But we allowed our neighbors to traverse our property and follow a more direct route to downtown. This proved to foster relationships with our neighbors.

Rather than prohibiting trails I would hope we can create trails. It would be beneficial to understand why some landowners don’t feel this way. As far as I can tell this is an opportunity to make Hood River a healthier, less congested and friendlier place to live.

Orhan Beckman

Hood River

Will madness end?

In August of 1945 the U.S. dropped atomic bombs on Japan. President Truman justified this by saying that Hiroshima was a military target, and this would save American lives, a dubious supposition at best.

Sixty years later we drop bombs on Iraqi population centers, killing tens of thousands of innocent people, in the name of democracy and ending terrorism. And now we are the world’s only superpower, and the most hated by the world’s people since Nazi Germany.

When will the madness end?

Diane Allen

White Salmon

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