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Government jobs at stake

While we debate the merits of welfare, food stamps and other social programs, one segment of people are overlooked: the bureaucrats who run the system.

Many bureaucrats running the welfare system simply do not care if someone is unjustly receiving welfare and food stamps, etc., as long as they retain their cushy, cushy government jobs. The folks who run the welfare system, although they deny it, want as many people as possible on government assistance.

That’s their job security! Having you depend upon them. The more folks who leave the welfare rolls the fewer bureaucrats we need. That’s why the welfare agencies fight hard to prevent funding cuts. It’s not about you, the poor or the children; it’s about government bureaucrats maintaining their precious government jobs.

And if you think that any of these bureaucrats lose sleep overnight due to your plight in life, you are sadly mistaken. They are afraid they may lose their government jobs and may have to go out and find a real job.

William A. Hall


Caucus was a setup

To all Idahoans: Those of us who were unable to vote just got stabbed with a sharp stick!

Now we really know what a caucus is. Thought you’d get to vote in the primary anyway? No, we can’t vote for presidential candidates in the primary! It’s control all over again by those in the government/political realm. A few hundred made the choice for thousands.

Where did our right to vote go? Did we have the normal 12 hours to make it to the polling place? No again, they made it mandatory to be present, sit and listen to others sell you on their candidates, as if we aren’t already bombarded with TV and radio commercials as well as newspaper ads – and then, you had to stay after the vote and vote again if there wasn’t a majority.

Like this setup deal? Feel threatened yet?

Soldiers (fighting for our liberties), senior citizens unable to sit for two to three hours (my mother and mother-in-law both in their nineties never missed a primary or general election), other people working, out of town or having prior commitments never had the chance to vote, and no absentee ballots!

As an Independent voter, I want the chance to vote! Why, in the USA, should I have to declare my allegiance to a party when I have voted for candidates in both parties?

Write your Idaho state representative senator, Republican and Democratic committees, and complain.

Carolyn Smith

Mackay, Idaho

Transports need hearings

The proposal to build a massive coal export facility in Longview, Wash., is generating concern among Washington residents for good reason. This would be one of the largest-scale industrial projects ever proposed in the Western United States.

Not only would port expansion have substantial impacts on Longview and the Columbia River, citizens along the route would suffer from the immense increase in coal train traffic. Spokane, Sandpoint and other towns in the Northwest would see about 50 coal trains a day, over one mile long, rolling through their communities. That’s a 500 percent increase above current coal traffic.

These trains present a clear public health hazard. Uncovered loads spew coal dust that, combined with an increase in diesel fumes, leads to a decrease in air quality and corresponding increase in asthma and other pulmonary diseases. The inevitable spillage and derailments will impact water quality. And massive new strip mines in Eastern Montana will turn a productive agricultural valley into an industrial wasteland.

With so much at stake, why are there no public hearings scheduled in Spokane on this issue? Residents of Eastern Washington who will be affected by the increase in coal train traffic deserve to have our voices heard.

Greg Gordon



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Editorial: Washington state lawmakers scramble to keep public in the dark

State lawmakers want to create a legislative loophole in Washington’s Public Records Act. While it’s nice to see Democrats and Republicans working together for once, it’s just too bad that their agreement is that the public is the enemy. As The Spokesman-Review’s Olympia reporter Jim Camden explained Feb. 22, lawmakers could vote on a bill today responding to a court order that the people of Washington are entitled to review legislative records.