Letters to the Editor for March 10, 2012

Ode against coal trains, vote for Sewell, more...

Ode against coal trains

So it's coal train

Not Coltrane

Don't make the mistake

To think this is fine jazz

And that it is so great

It's not, it sucks

It's a blight

A condition

And when it roars through

All day and all night

You'll be a'wishin

We weren't sending

Our cheap dirty coal

Through the Gorge

For their mission

To burn it in China

Without scrubbers sufficient

And wafting the air

Back to us

With a vision

That's dark and ugly

To rain on our fishin'


That's not what we need

Their coal on our tracks

Through our towns

And our Gorge

Let's turn it right back

And tell Mr. Buffett

Don't make a deposit

On our banks

We won't love it

It's time to reject

This coal

And reflect

The big picture

That the world is warmin'

A lot faster than normal

It's truly alarmin'

And this coal is just harmin'

Every one of us

There's few jobs in this dust

This black gold is producin'

It's no good and thus

We should be refusin'

When we ask ourselves

What's this all about

You know it's just greed


I mean really

How much do you need

Mr. B and your homeys

That coal should stay put

And not be a roamin

Keep it back in the ground

In the state of Wyomin'

A resource for us

To draw in the future

When science has figured

How to burn it with care

Not smudging our air

And our precious Gorge

With the diesel and dust

And the noise as it's rushed

Besides, it's our coal

On public trust

We're givin' it away

With no money in hand

Except to the fat cats

Who don't give a damn

And the politicians

That are lookin' to scam

Us all into thinkin'

It's bringing us jobs

When it's just automation

It's all right

It's no bother


Just let it go through

You can filter

Your air

And your

Coal crusted water

Mike Rockwell

Hood River

Vote for Sewell

As a private citizen, I am asking you to vote for John T. Sewell for District Attorney.

Mr. Sewell has been a prosecutor for 32 years, 28 of those in Hood River. The experience he has gained representing the people of our county is invaluable and irreplaceable.

In my career working in the legal field I have witnessed Mr. Sewell's work from the defense team perspective, from the District Attorney's office perspective, and for the last 19½ years as a court clerk, from the neutral courtroom perspective.

I have watched him fairly and compassionately deal with victims of crime and their families, other attorneys, judges and defendants. These qualities in a prosecutor are necessary in our diverse community.

John is part of the team that started the Hood River Drug Court. This program offers an alternative to lengthy prison or jail sentences (which are very expensive to the public) for drug-related criminal offenses. If a defendant can comply with about 600 separate requirements in that year, then the system returns a sober and productive person back to society instead of a convict.

Drug Court has had 22 graduates to date, and is mostly funded by donations and offender fees, therefore extremely cost-efficient. Drug court is just one example of John's commitment to be a problem solver, and shows that he is conscientious of saving precious tax dollars.

In these times of uncertain public budgets, Hood River County needs an experienced fiscal steward who has proven he can weather the challenge of providing consistent service to the public despite shrinking dollars. He runs an efficient office on one of the smallest District Attorney budgets in the state of Oregon.

Please join me in voting for experience, integrity and capability in John T. Sewell, District Attorney.

Pamela D. Newman

Hood River

Vote for Aaron

I am writing this letter in support of Brian Aaron for District Attorney of Hood River County. I grew up in Hood River and have known Brian for over 20 years. I also had the opportunity to work in his law office several years ago.

Through his work in criminal and juvenile law he has always shown his dedication and concern for his clients and their families. I have observed his work ethic and can say from firsthand experience that he is willing to work long hours to get the job completed.

He also maintains the highest level of professional integrity and honesty. Brian is always willing to listen and consider what the opposing view is, a trait lacking in many lawyers.

I believe Brian Aaron is the best candidate for this office and I strongly encourage you to consider him when casting your vote for Hood River County District Attorney.

Jacinta Ortiz

Oregon City

Change is inevitable

It's a good thing that the anti-Walmart group, defenders of Rosauers and Safeway, were not here when these stores replaced our actual hometown grocery stores - Toby's, Brookside Market, Central Food Market, etc.

Relax, folks - it's called progress and competition. I know most of you who have discovered the Gorge want it always to remain unchanged, but that's not very realistic.

Ruth Turner

Hood River

What is downside?

On the campaign trail, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich has been throwing around the line, "You can't put a gun rack in a Volt," mocking the Chevrolet electric car. Really - attacking a fuel-efficient car?

The Republican Party has been rightly critical of President Barack Obama for failing to lead on energy production. But too many Republicans are guilty of failing the same leadership test, actively rejecting what has to be a pillar of a smart energy policy - conservation.

As global demand and speculation drive up the cost of gas, one of the best ways to save money at the pump is to take personal responsibility: Make sure your tires are properly inflated, drive efficiently and drive a fuel-efficient vehicle when possible.

Every drop of fuel that we conserve today - while we develop our own resources - is a drop of fuel that we don't need to buy from hostile dictatorships. Conservation's simply a sensible part of the package.

Plenty of Democrats have gone too far in demagoguing against big oil. But to every pundit or politico who wants to make hybrid car jokes, we have to ask: What's the downside to improved efficiency?

Charlie Christensen

Hood River

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