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Letters to Editor


Dear Editor:

Representative John Salazar has voted along with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi 97 percent of the time. Mr. Salazar missed about three percent of the votes cast on the house floor. Do the math. Ms. Pelosi is on the far left of the political spectrum, so where does that leave the honorable gentleman from Colorado?

Regarding the health care bill, Mr. Salazar had already agreed to vote the party line, with pro-abortion language in the health care reform bill, and he wasn’t one of the Stupak pro-life dozen, so don’t be fooled there. What about the caps on malpractice suits? This was conveniently left out of the bill again.

The health care reform bill that Mr. Salazar voted for adds 17,000 more IRS agents, not border patrol agents. America has three combat zones, which are Afghanistan, Iraq and our southern border. To date, we have lost around 5,400 brave U.S. soldiers protecting American interests in the Middle East. Five thousand to 8,000 Americans lose their lives along the U.S.-Mexican border every year, and congress doesn’t seem to be concerned. Yet our government still has (or finds) the funds to hire an extra 17,000 IRS agents. Go figure? If this health care reform bill will actually save us tax dollars, then why do we need more revenue collectors? That’s 340 agents for each of our 50 states: 340 divided by 64 counties equals an extra five agents per Colorado county. Lord help us!

The government will take over the student loan program in the same legislation mentioned above. Yes, the government is nationalizing the student loan program at the same time that it’s trying to take over the health care industry. Government has already taken over a large part of the automobile industry, the insurance industry, the U.S. Postal Service (it usually shows a profit when privatized), and the banking and financial industries. Isn’t this communism by definition? Excluding corporate America, what’s left to take over, except for the mom and pop businesses and the remainder of our freedoms, including capitalism, which many loyal Americans have fought and died for?

And Mr. Obama … where does he come from? What’s his real agenda? How many promises has he kept? Does he have an anti free enterprise cabinet? So what do these pro-business groups say about Mr. Salazar? He scored 0 percent with the NRF (National Retail Federation), which means he voted against their business trade interests 100 percent of the time according to their method of scoring. Many of their members are small, independent businesses struggling to make it in this dismal economy. What happened to all the jobs that were promised by the new administration?

Now Social Security and Medicare are in trouble again. Who planned on an extra 5 percent of the workforce being unemployed and not paying into the system? We may have to borrow another trillion or two to shore it up? Stand up America, look at their deeds and actions, not just their words. Mr. Salazar may be a moderate, in San Francisco, California.


R. Marshall Boyd

Del Norte


Dear Editor:

I have recently been informed by a client of mine that the graduation ceremony has been changed from Saturday, May 22 to Sunday, May 23. I am furious about the change! Back in October of last year, we parents were put on a deadline and had to order and purchase graduation announcements by a certain date. Which in this economy was tough.

I have recently received my printed announcements, which are dated for May 22, 2010. Not one faculty member or school board member has informed any parents of the change. How irresponsible can our school board be? What happens now? Do we as parents get reimbursed for the money we have spent on these announcements, which have the wrong date on them? Is the school board going to do something about this? This mishap is not the fault of the parents or students and we all need to be reimbursed!

What about the family members that have made plans to travel to the graduation and have to leave on Sunday? Does this mean friends and relatives will have to miss graduation due to the poor planning of the school board? These young adults have waited all their lives for this opportunity. How unfair and inconsiderate is the school board for changing the date of graduation without informing parents and/or family members who have already sent out their announcements and made travel plans.

This decision is an outrage and something needs to be done to compensate all of us parents who have put out hundreds of dollars for announcements that now have the wrong date!

L.M Clark


Dear Editor:

Mr. Witkowski, all you need is a thermometer and a ruler to verify your published numbers. I admit the earth is a big place, so I suggest you start in your own backyard. I challenge you to measure the temperature to within a few thousandths of a degree and determine if the annual temperature in your backyard is changing. I will even offer a source of assistance. Professor Nolan Doesken, chairman of the Meteorology Department at Colorado State University at Fort Collins, is looking for a volunteer weather observer in the Arboles area. Should you accept an assignment as a weather observer, I will buy your lunch at the Pagosa senior center. (About 20 years ago, I helped my granddaughter with a science fair project on the changing climate of southwestern Colorado. Nolan was very helpful in supplying data.)

As for expert qualifications, I hope that every student in the Pagosa eighth-grade science class has enough common sense to challenge your quoted numbers. Where do you propose to put your instrumentation, how many stations, how many readings, how are you planning to analyze the data, how do you verify the accuracy of the data? How do you treat data from weather stations that are added, subtracted or moved, or when the environment around the weather stations changes?

As for me, I am an old ceramic engineer who spent a lifetime measuring temperatures. I started out in the days when we used Orton pyrometric cones to measure the temperatures in the kilns. I spent my hitch at the Army Chemical Center, Edgewood, Md., assigned to a group working on gas mask development. I worked for the old Minneapolis Honeywell Corporation on measuring temperatures in jet engines, where an error of a few degrees can be catastrophic. I worked at Sandia National Labs, where it was the rule that if you wanted to measure a parameter, like length or temperature, your instrumentation had to be ten times better than the unit you wished to measure. For example, if one wished to measure the temperature of an object to within one thousandth of a degree, one’s thermometer must be certified accurate to one ten-thousandth of a degree. Don’t bother the National Bureau of Standards. They will sell you a thermocouple good to a degree or so for an arm and a leg. Waving the number 0.0072 degrees Fahrenheit in front of a ceramic engineer is equivalent to waving a red flag in front of a bull.

Mr. Witkowski, I suggest atmospheric scientists are quite capable of making their results known through peer-reviewed journals and on many excellent Web sites.

I apologize to the readers of The SUN for three letters on global warming, and I plan no more on this subject.

Bob Dungan



Dear Editor:

According to a friend, Andy Donlon, I have been remiss in writing letters lately, so I am going to “unremiss” myself. Have you been to the clinic yet? In order to see Dr. Dan sooner rather than later, I saw him at the clinic. It is squeaky fresh and clean and what a job they are doing for the non- and under-insured. Now it is going to be open every day with a new staff. If it had not been for Dan Keuning, physician’s assistant, and his hard work and persistence, where would the idea for this clinic be today? And now he and his lovely family are leaving us. We will certainly be the losers! We just wish him good luck and happiness.

Cindy Gustafson

HOSA benefit

Dear Editor:

Thanks for featuring in Focus last month, “HOSA in Pagosa.” For those who didn’t see the article, here’s an update.

Health Occupations Students of America is a program headed up by Cindy Nobles, a high school teacher. It began last school year with six members and grew to 14 students competing at the state level this year.

As I write this letter, I am so very proud of our small community, the high school and especially the dedication of Cindy Nobles, who has given her most valuable time to teach our children the extras. Thanks also to the many mentors (14 in all), who have also given their most valuable time to mentor. They are the professionals of our great community and are deserving of a thank you from each of us. I know as a proud parent, I thank my son’s mentor, Steve Urban, for giving the extra help.

Five out of the 14 High School Students who competed at state in Denver qualified to compete at nationals. Unfortunately, because of the over $2 million budget cut to our school district over the next two years, it’s obvious to say there’s no money for HOSA, yet as I just finished writing this letter, I had a thought, there’s plenty of money. Yes, plenty of this will come from those who care about what this program represents. We need your help in sending our students to Orlando, Fla., in June.

We have put together a benefit dinner with music to help raise the funds needed. The dinner will be at the Parish Hall on Lewis Street Saturday, April 10, from 6-8:30 p.m. and if I can get away from frying up all that fry bread, I might sing a little.

For those of you who cannot make our fund-raisers and would still like to contribute (and Oprah, Ellen if you’re out there, will you please send a few million to School District 50 Jt.), donations can be made out to PSHS HOSA and sent to Pagosa Springs High School, Cindy Nobles, P.O. Box 1498; Pagosa Springs, CO 81147. Donations are tax deductible. Once again, thanks Pagosa for your help. Hope to see you Saturday.


June Marquez

Fear more

Dear Editor:

According to Karl Isberg, we have “too much fear”.

Mr. Isberg, the direction our government is taking should cause Americans to fear more, not less! Some personal examples: My real estate taxes increased 14.65 percent! My car registration increased 36.36 percent! Now the ACCD (911) center is asking for a 44 percent increase! Congress just gave themselves a $6,000 raise this year! My income has decreased 7.96 percent!

I say it’s time to throw the rascals out and elect someone who will cut the big government spending and control! It is criminal the way Congress has exempted themselves from the mandatory health insurance and has taken control of the student loan program. Just watch, more control and vote buying with our children’s and grandchildren’s money is on the way.

John Meyer

Beyond angry

Dear Editor:

For the first time in our history, the United States is a nation in decline — and Obama, along with his Chi-town thugs, is delighted.

However, more and more Americans understand that this bunch in the White House and those appointed by Obama throughout Washington do not like this country as founded. They resent it, they think America is unfair, immoral, unjust — from our military to our capitalist system — and they’re out to change it. They complain we’ve exploited the world’s resources, stolen all the goods and services from around the globe, kept the rest of the world poor while enriching ourselves. We deserve a comeuppance — and the Obama team is going ta make sure we get it. They intend to give this country a bitch slap.

Many Americans instinctively realized this early on, and their response to the administration’s ill intents effervesced right out of the grassroots. Most were people who had never been to a town hall or a political march, were only casually invested in politics. But they knew. They said, “This is not our country. The debt that’s being run up, this spending, is going to trap us all, roll back our lifestyles and the opportunities for our kids and grandkids.” Folks recoiled at the Obama-managed decline of the nation. How dare you, they demanded: “We want our country back.”

And now it is clear that a sizeable majority wants absolutely no part of Barack Obama’s agenda. But managing America’s decline is the part of his role that Obama most relishes. It’s his purpose. It’s the reason the people on his team are with him. America’s decline: you’re seeing it.

America is still America. America is her people — the people who make this country work. And the people are beyond angry at what is being done to them, their dreams, and to the fabric of their traditions and institutions.

So Obama may think he is making headway in managing our decline. But in response, something else very powerful is ascending. Conservatism.

So now, we find ourselves at a tipping point: an aroused populace that is simply not going ta take it anymore, and is engaged in the great pushback of our time. It will be an epic struggle, because the far left is unleashed and on the march.

But now, the battle is joined. After the shameful Sunday night House vote on March 21, both Obama and Pelosi commented on their health-care takeover that, “This is personal.” Damn right it is. This is all about personal freedom. Which you infringe upon at your enormous peril.

Declared Obama in Strongsville, Ohio on March 15: “It comes down to what kind of country do we want to be.”

Hell, yes. And we the people have a response, Mr. Obumbler, which will be delivered loud and clear in November. What kind of country do we want to be?

A free one!

And free we shall definitely be. To that we pledge our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor; the “beat” of the founder’s move forward.

Jim Sawicki

Mural project

Dear Editor:

Did you know that there is a Mural on Main Street project here in Pagosa? This project consists of replacing the faded and peeling mural downtown next to The Rose restaurant and replacing it with a beautiful mural depicting a herd of running horses with our beautiful mountains in the background. The project also includes building a community park with benches, trees and landscaping for residents and visitors alike to enjoy. This project would do so much to revitalize the downtown area and give that specific spot a much needed face lift. In this economy, Pagosa needs to do as much as it can to attract visitors and a large grant from PepsiCo would certainly help foot the bill!

Pepsi has a competitive grant program that covers many areas. The Mural on Main Street project is in the running for one in particular — the Pepsi Refresh Arts and Culture $50,000 grant award. On day one of the voting process, the Pagosa Springs Mural on Main Street project was No. 361 in popularity. I just heard from a friend that when she voted we were at No. 67. This is such great news, and it looks like, with continued voting, Pagosa has a great shot at seeing the new mural and park become a reality. By the time this issue of The SUN hits the stands and mailboxes, we might even be in the top 25. At the end of the month, the top 10 ideas for funding will receive funds. So, Pagosa, we need to make it into that top 10 on our way to the top spot — No. 1!

Please sign in at Pepsi Refresh Grant program at If you enter Pagosa Springs in the Search box at the top right, it will pop up Pagosa’s entry for you in a second. The whole process takes about 30 seconds tops and, remember, you can vote once a day, from each email address you have, for the entire month of April. Winners will be announced on May 1. I just checked and the project is at No. 65. Please get this information to your friends and family so they can vote, too. We can do this Pagosa!

Please consider voting and marking your calendar to vote each and every day until the end of the month. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if our little town could win this grant?

Siri Schuchardt

Fewer managers

Dear Editor:

I guess I do not understand how the Archuleta County Road and Bridge Department can have three foremen, a superintendent, a director and a task force made up of local road professionals, all to oversee 14 men; and we do not have center stripes on the roads, cannot fix potholes, the gravel roads are horrid and the paved roads are not maintained properly.

If you count the three commissioners and a county manager, that makes 15 people to oversee 15 equipment operators. There are more bosses looking over fewer workers than there ever have been.

Several years ago, there were only two foremen to oversee 24 workers, and things got done and were done well.

Our road crews are not trained on pavement maintenance and the commissioners want to pave more roads? Take a look at South Pagosa or the first part of CR 500 or Piedra Road,a to name a few roads that are falling apart due to lack of maintenance. The way I see it is that we can reduce the amount of managers, add several more operators and get the proper training for everyone and maybe even save some money that could be put back into the roads. Maybe the commissioners should start getting in touch with how the county operates before they repeat the same mistakes that almost bankrupt the county in 2007.

Bill Smith


Dear Editor:

While I agree with much of what Pagosa Springs SUN editor Karl Isberg wrote in his April 1 editorial entitled, “Enough with the fear,” I don’t think it is realistic to expect the leaders of either the Democrat or Republican parties to declare a ceasefire any time soon.

The reasons for this are many, and Mr. Isberg accurately described various of them in his editorial; fault can be attributed to both parties. However, in my opinion, the origin of much of what is going on at present can be traced back to the mid-term elections in 2006 when the Democrats assumed a majority in both houses of congress. Shortly after this, in her speech to congress after being sworn as speaker of the house, Nancy Pelosi stated, “I accept this gavel in the spirit of partnership, not partisanship, and look forward to working with you on behalf of the American people. In this house, we may belong to different parties, but we serve one country.” What a joke! From that moment until now, there can be no doubt that Pelosi has represented only the liberal wing of the Democratic Party. It was this kind of “partnership” and what she has called “transparency” which has, more than anything else, created the gulf between the two parties and the fear and suspicion among many Americans.

Despite the fact that the majority of the American people didn’t want the health care bill forced upon them as was done, the Obama/Pelosi cabal succeeded. In a press conference on March 9, Pelosi stated that, “We (the democrats) have to pass the (health care) bill so that you can find out what is in it, away from the fog of controversy.” So, this is how legislation will be passed in congress from now on? Is this what Obama was referring to when he said he would “bring change we can believe in?” I’m sorry, but this is not the sort of “change” that is expected in a democracy. But, then, maybe we’re no longer living in a democracy.

Mr. Isberg wrote that, next November, we should “ponder a vote based on which politicians stand up against the lobbyists, the big money interests and partisan hacks and condemn the politics of fear.” I agree wholeheartedly, Mr. Isberg, and therefore call upon the American people to reject the policies of Obama and Pelosi next November.

Gary Stansbury


Dear Editor:

How did Thomas Jefferson know?

Thomas Jefferson foretold:

“The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not.”

“It is incumbent on every generation to pay its own debts as it goes. A principle which if acted on would save one-half the wars of the world.”

“I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them.”

“My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government.”

“The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.”

“To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.”

“I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies. If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around the banks will deprive the people of all property — until their children wake up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered.”

Source: Google —…html, click on T.J. Knew and scroll down.

Our current government has not heeded the warnings of our founders or followed the Constitution they wrote. It is imperative that we replace our president and congress members with people who will heed and follow.

Here are some recent interesting national polls. Rasmussen: 53 percent trust the GOP; 37 percent trust demos. Fifty-four percent want Obamacare repealed. The GOP is favored over the dems on nine of 10 key issues. Seventy-five percent say their views are not represented by the federal government. Gallup: Only 28 percent say they would vote to reelect congress.

Eugene Witkowski