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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Letters To The Editor


Support downtown redevelopment

The issue of whether or not our City Council should purchase a parking garage for the project which includes a new Nordstrom and much more is one that should concern us all.

I work and play downtown a great portion of my life, and strongly support this project. We must sustain our businesses and the energies that provide life to this curious, changeable, well-loved city we call home. We must be willing to share our own precious resources to preserve and empower those in this wonderful city. I will do what I can. I challenge others to do the same. Together, we will.

L. Karen Branson, director First Impressions, Spokane

Roskelley a proven leader

Complaining about “uncontrolled, unethical, unresponsive government” is becoming the new American way. Increasingly, we are perceiving ourselves as victims of bureaucracy, rather than active participants in the political process.

Distrust, blame and apathy are fragmenting us into reactive, instead of pro-active, splinter groups.

Call me delusional, but I believe that we the people are the government. Our elected officials must be held accountable for representing our collective will.

Qualities of personal integrity, courage, intelligence, evenness and vision must outweigh nepotism, special interest lobbies, favoritism and hidden agendas in the selection of our leaders.

Spokane County Commissioner John Roskelley embodies these values and qualities. Where few of us are willing to sacrifice our personal comfort to step out and champion the common voice, he has proven himself to be a true public servant. His honesty, accessibility, clarity of thought and impeccable character should set the standard for those we elect to represent us.

We can quit our itching and make a positive political impact by re-electing Roskelley. Lisa Nania Liberty Lake

McCaslin would be outstanding

I have known Kate McCaslin for years. She has worked hard for our community and would make an outstanding county commissioner.

McCaslin is a second-generation small business person who knows what it takes to balance a budget, set priorities and hold people accountable. She’s a good listener and cares about what citizens think. McCaslin has an enormously strong work ethic, enthusiasm and lots of energy. Her fresh ideas would be a welcome and needed addition to county government.

If you want real improvements in county government, please vote for McCaslin for county commissioner. Norma Ventris Spokane


AmeriCorps volunteers a bargain

I serve proudly as an AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer. As a neighborhood support specialist, I am responsible for research and development for more effective ways to recruit, mobilize and create community connections at the neighborhood grass-roots level.

All VISTA workers are forewarned they hold 24-hour positions; this means no second job or full-time student status. It also means numerous night meetings. Two to four per week are the norm. Weekends also belong to AmeriCorps.

For these “easy” hours, volunteers in Spokane receive a $631/month living allowance stipend, medical for themselves, $300/month child care allowance and a $4,725 educational award at the end of service.

This is not exactly the $27,000/year quoted by Alexandra Ockey in her Oct. 28 editorial.

Why do we do it? VISTA volunteers make things happen during their year of service. In Spokane we build homes, reconnect youth to the community and develop neighborhood leadership through such programs as the Shaw Open Gyms and the Institute for Neighborhood Leadership.

Elsewhere, VISTA volunteers restore damaged habitats, teach literacy and self-sufficiency skills and create food banks - whatever our communities need to thrive and grow.

We support neighborhood citizens to define problems, seek solutions and implement real, sustainable change. When these citizens are mobilized, they commit to several thousand hours of volunteer effort; efforts which in the past were paid for with your tax dollars. Sounds like AmeriCorps volunteers are a bargain to their communities. Connie Nelson Spokane

Questionable honesty worrisome

President Clinton brags about his administrations record on crime, but take a closer look. I read someplace that nine or 10 of the president’s business associates were convicted or under indictment. How many of us even know nine or 10 people convicted or under indictment?

Is President Clinton serious about crime or has he profited from crime? If you can’t decide, forget what he says and study what he’s done. Walt Neu Naples, Idaho

We need what Clinton’s so good at

It is ironic and laughable that those pummeling President Clinton for ethics and character are many of the same people who claimed Jimmy Carter was too nice and too honest to be president.

They are also many of the same people who voted twice for Richard Nixon and Spiro Agnew.

It is doubly ironic that these loud advocates of a lofty government are supporting Bob Dole, a man who spent his professional career tailoring his political positions to suit those of his wealthy backers.

In global competitiveness, our best interests are better served by a nimble, crafty politician who knows how to be all things to all people, to shape deals and move an agenda steadily forward through fierce opposition. We have such a president already and we’re on the verge of providing him a well-earned second term. Fred Glienna Coeur d’Alene

Dole’s all right; Clinton’s all wrong

The choice between Bob Dole and Bill Clinton for president is crystal clear.

Dole’s agenda includes lower taxes, less government regulation, a balanced budget, free enterprise, individual responsibility and private property rights, vs. Clinton’s vision of more government control, more social programs and inevitably higher taxes. He talks about building a bridge to the 21st century, but doesn’t tell you it would be built with your tax dollars.

In spite of his silver-tongued rhetoric, Clinton’s record for the past four years shows he’s a socialist at heart. If Congress hadn’t stopped him, he and Hillary would have destroyed the best health care system in the world and nationalized one-seventh of the country’s economy.

Under Clinton, the defense budget has been cut drastically. Clinton opposes the missile defense system. With the proliferation of nuclear capability, especially in unstable dictatorships, a Star Wars-type interception would be our only defense against incoming missiles.

Clinton tries to take credit for welfare reform, yet he reluctantly signed the welfare reform bill the Republican Congress passed and indicated it could be gotten around by executive order.

A vote Bob Dole is a vote for a free America. Margaret M. Hopkins Spokane

Clinton foreign policy makes sense

I take exception to recent articles alleging lack of leadership by President Clinton in foreign policy. Consider where we might be today if Clinton had failed to lead over the last four years.

Iraqi troops would be back in Kuwait.

There would be not just one but four nuclear states on the territory of the former Soviet Union.

North Korea would be well on the way to possessing nuclear weapons.

War would still be raging in Bosnia.

Dictators would still rule Haiti.

There would be no framework for peace in the Middle East.

The difference between the Dole and Clinton approach is that Dole wants to feature only the military. He has stated in campaign speeches, “The world needs to fear us.” It was diplomacy under Clinton, not fear, that produced the nuclear agreements and disarmament in former Soviet Union lands, a virtually bloodless restoration of democracy in Haiti, the Dayton accords to restore peace in Bosnia and a framework for Middle East peace.

The Republican Congress pushed through $11 billion more for military spending than the Pentagon requested, a sum well beyond budgetary needs of its long-term planning. Congress also slashed the budgets for diplomatic leadership around the world. In the last year, these budget cuts have forced the U.S. to close 30 consulates and embassies.

We cannot advance American interests by lowering the American flag. Beverly McConnell Pullman

Browne, Libertarians have answers

Anyone who wants smaller, less expensive and less intrusive government should vote for Harry Browne for president. The Libertarian Party is the only party that consistently supports reducing the size of government.

Browne and his running mate, Jo Jorgensen, are business people, not career politicians. They are the only candidates with solutions for solving the Social Security and Medicare problems and balancing the budget.

Other candidates talk about these problems but can’t tell how they will fix them. Browne describes his solutions in his book, “Why Government Doesn’t Work.”

Browne and the Libertarian Party are on the ballot in all 50 states and the District of Columbia for the second consecutive presidential race. Libertarians achieved 50-state status before any other third party.

Browne is leading in many Internet polls and is in second place in others. Libertarians are accomplishing this in spite of a virtual media blackout that even gives failed candidate Richard Lamm more coverage.

There’s no reason to waste your vote on the lesser of evils when you can vote for something positive. A vote for Browne is a vote for yourself. It’s vote to decide for yourself how you will spend or save your money and how you will live your life. Any other vote is to have government make those decisions for you. David Wordinger Medical Lake

Republicans will cut programs, costs

Democratic plans for our federal government are shortsighted. I challenge seniors to think about the impact of year-after-year increases in the Medicare program at rates much higher than inflation. Your grandchildren will be able to afford only so much of your debt before they and this nation collapse under the burden.

Republicans like Rep. George Nethercutt and Bob Dole support a plan that would save Medicare and avoid destroying our children’s future.

I found it so ironic last year when the Democrats villainized the Republicans for a small cut in the school lunch program. They make it seem that no cut in any federal program makes sense. They and the media encourage us to exhibit increased selfishness - inspiring each of us to fight to preserve increases in our own pet federal program. All the while, the federal debt keeps climbing and our ability to pay it diminishes.

We give our children free school lunches today but force them into a future of poverty caused by the federal debt the Democrats say we can pay later. The only viable solution for making our federal government fiscally responsible is to cut spending. Vote for the only candidates who truly plan to do this: Nethercutt and Dole. John Rowley Walla Walla

Vote on basis of character

The arrogance of this presidency is an embarrassment to the United States. If one is to believe the polls, a vast majority of those polled distrust the president, yet support his re-election. Why?

We carefully screen child care givers before entrusting our children to them. We scrutinize our children’s teachers to make sure they are capable educators of the highest moral and spiritual character. We evaluate our children’s friends and their families to make sure they are good influences. We seek references in choosing a church and minister, a physician, dentist, even a plumber.So, why do we disregard character, trust, integrity, credibility and honesty when selecting a person to the highest office of the land, the presidency?

Vote your conscience on Nov. 5. June C. Peterson Fernwood, Idaho


S-R directions: backward, downward

What a week it’s been! The Spokesman-Review endorses Bob Dole, Rep. George Nethercutt even Rep. Helen Chenoweth - offers a headline promising coverage of Vice President Al Gore’s campaign visit to Spokane that turns out to be a forum for Nethercutt’s inane carping and assaults sense and logic with pyrrhic polemics by Republican hatchetmen Tony Snow and David Broder (joined, in lockstep, by Nixonian lapdog and congenital attention-seeker William Safire).

Then, with the Dole candidacy apparently DOA, came one of the most amazing bits of losing-team doublespeak ever printed: Republican congress people must be reelected so as to provide Congress with “balance,” and keep that naughty Clinton in check.

The mind boggles.

If we choose to elect a president, why would we want to hamstring him with the same ballot?

Today comes the capper: A poll generated at least in part by that “balanced” newspaper, The Spokesman-Review, that projects a victory for its anointed Nethercutt.

Fellow voters of the 5th District, we must prove this “scientific survey” wrong. Get to the polls, and get all your friends to the polls, to elect Judy Olson, and send the 95-percent Newtoid back to local party organizing. We might have been fooled once, back in‘94; we won’t be fooled again, this newspaper’s blinkered backing notwithstanding. Michael Hanly Pullman

Clinton best to deal with foreigners

There is something I have not heard mentioned in the presidential campaign which I think is important.

The president of the United States meets with leaders of many nations. The impressions made on them are important in their perception of our country and our influence on them. Therefore, our president should be a person of warm personality and sensitivity, able to meet others and know how to deal with them.

I do not see these characteristics in Bob Dole or Ross Perot, but President Clinton has proved that he has them. Elise Whitwer Coeur d’Alene

Mud can’t hide Clinton achievements

In my life I never have seen the opposing party try and destroy a person. They have spent millions of dollars for four years and still are at it. Thank God the public is not buying it.

President Clinton and Vice President Gore are still with their first wives - more than can be said for Bob Dole. Dole did not want Ross Perot in the debates and now he has the nerve to ask him to come and help him out.

The time has come when we should really take a look at how the 104th Congress voted for what us seniors are worth. The National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare has kept a close watch on our how representatives have voted and Bob Dole, House Speaker Newt Gingrich and Rep. George Nethercutt have a very poor record on our behalf.

Who cares if we have to stay in Bosnia a little longer as long as they can live in peace - a big change from four years ago. Frank Peterson Greenacres

Radical liberals are in control

Supposedly moderate President Clinton says it’s OK to remove the brains of living late-term unborn babies, with your tax dollars when necessary. He has given 75 million of your tax dollars to International Planned Parenthood and the United Nations, assisting the Chinese in their barbaric population control program. China has forced abortions and a 90 percent mortality rate in their orphanages, where babies, mostly girls, are allowed to starve to death. Then he has the nerve to deny refugees asylum from the Chinese government.

Gary Locke, our Democratic candidate for governor, supports gay marriages and unlimited tax-funded abortions. The same goes for Rep. Lisa Brown, candidate for state senator. How about Alex Wood, the 3rd District state representative candidate who favors legalizing drugs?

American taxpaying families are being attacked fiscally and morally by radical liberals.

America, vote Republican. Don’t make Clinton our last U.S. president. Mike Carpenter Spokane


Story about me is what was flawed

“Candidate’s biography flawed” (News, Oct. 29) was an outrageous article.

Truth: My biography is not flawed. The Spokesman-Review admitted this in a clarification published Oct. 30.

Truth: I have in my possession letters from 1986 and 1987 stating I was an “adjunct professor” at Gonzaga University.

Truth: I gave the reporter documents proving that I taught several classes at the Intercollegiate Center for Nursing Education. None of them were mentioned. No Washington state license is required to guest lecture at ICNE, as the article claims.

Truth: Like an airline pilot living in Spokane and based out of Los Angeles, military personnel and other federal employees, including me, often have work assignments away from home. My home has been Nine Mile Falls since 1981.

Truth: I made no claim to any voting record. The article falsely quotes me.

Truth: I uphold high standards of health care. When Veterans Administration managers hired a surgeon who hurt, infected and caused the death of veteran patients, I became a whistleblower. The court ruled the managers were immune from suit and not accountable for their retaliation. I fought their slander and defamation of me then and I will fight slander and defamation of me today!

Truth: I now understand the pain of mean, negative campaigns. I now understand why citizens of talent and integrity, like Colin Powell, refuse to run.

Voters, consider your choices. Come and inspect my documents, which are on display at Democratic headquarters, 315 W. Mission. I am a seasoned professional and the right person to represent you. Judy Personett Nine Mile Falls, Wash.

Editor’s note: The Spokesman-Review stands by its story.

‘Biography’ story headline flawed

In regard to staff writer Kim Barker’s Oct. 29 article, “Candidate’s biography flawed,” the headline was flawed, not Judy Personett’s biography.

According to the article, “Personett has been a nurse for 34 years. She’s won numerous awards. She’s earned several degrees and worked in seven Veteran’s Affairs hospitals. She’s received high evaluations in several of her positions. She’s published articles in several health care publications.”

Barker also tells of an adjunct professor and/or instructor as interchangeable terminology.

A nurse who has the courage to butt heads with a doctor when she feels he is wrong, regardless of the consequence, is the very person to represent us in Olympia - the kind of person we should want. I know that’s the kind of person I want.

The article states the truth, then distorts it with innuendo and half-truths that try to discredit a very dedicated individual.

Why not check her opponent’s record and see why he no longer works for the bank? Darlene Frederick Spokane

Benson’s views are appalling

Our 6th District state representative race is critically important. The last session of the U.S. Congress passed laws requiring states to have a greater role in shaping policy than ever before.

The Republican Party presents a candidate who appears to be the traditional offering - on the surface. Brad Benson campaigns as the family man. He talks the talk of the anti-big-government traditional conservative. Look below the surface. We cannot just accept common campaign rhetoric. We must seek real answers.

Look at Benson’s ideas with a critical eye and the image is frightening. True, he is a family man. His ideas support and make sense for his family. But they won’t help resolve the problems other families in our state are facing. They bode ill for the future of Washington’s children.

Benson constantly misquotes public school funding issues. He’s on record in support of school vouchers - a concept The Spokesman-Review identifies as a “bad idea.” He has clearly demonstrated his willingness to destroy quality public education and mislead us into thinking it’s the best course. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Benson’s approach to the disabled is appalling. At a recent meeting with CORD, a disability advocacy group, Benson suggested that disabled children in our schools should be segregated. Clearly, he has no respect for the basic rights of all people in our society.

This election is far too important to allow such an inexperienced and reactionary voice to represent us in Olympia. Yvonne L. Griffin Spokane

Craswell clone would be disaster

Dixie Lee Ray was a Democrat, Dexter Amend a Republican and Chris Anderson an independent. Many citizens regret ever having put any of them on the public payroll. No point in shedding tears, but let’s spill no more milk.

Another ballot box disaster is likely in the 6th Legislative District, where Republicans are in the great majority. If they follow the partisan path and choose only with regard to the label and packaging of their candidate, they, along with the rest of us, will soon come to wish they had left their Craswell clone on the shelf.

Let’s hope they seriously consider the discernible qualitative differences between the two who are vying for the position vacated by Jean Silver.

Judy Personett is the responsible moderate with a record of professional experience, substantive accomplishment and seasoned judgment which her young, doctrinaire and dogmatic opponent can only envy but never emulate.

Please, voters, really check these two out and put the better one in office. Clay Bleck Spokane

Nit-picking aside, Personett’s best

The Spokesman-Review’s last-minute attack on Judy Personett only confirms her qualifications for office.

Nit-picking aside, the article shows Personett was a practicing nurse for 34 years. As chief nurse at the veterans hospital, she supervised over 100 nurses. She taught at two of the local colleges, whether as an adjunct professor or as an adjunct instructor. Personett is presently a national lecturer on health care standards.

According to the attack article, a decade ago, Personett had a conflict with a supervisor because she challenged the quality of a VA surgeon’s work. That sounds like good patient advocacy to me.

The 6th District is lucky to have a candidate with Personett’s qualifications and experience. Her nursing background will be extremely valuable when the Legislature considers health care issues. Her doctorate in education will also be useful when the Legislature considers education issues. Susan T. Sawyer Spokane

Hopkins’ way is intelligent, moderate

It has seemed in recent years that politicians have focused more on empty promises and personal attacks than on substance or performance. We know of at least one candidate, however, who has sought to rise above this trend.

Jerry Hopkins, candidate for the state Legislature, 6th District position 2, is intelligent, honest and practical.

As a member of the Park Board and as president of the Spokane Education Association, Hopkins was known as a consensus builder willing to see both sides of an issue.

Hopkins is a strong supporter of public education, for example, but understands that schools must be accountable to the public. He also supports helping small businesses, but knows workers deserve protection as well.

Hopkins does not represent extremism. He has no sacred cows. He is not controlled by any particular interest group. Hopkins offers sincere and practical leadership at a time when such traits are all too rare.

Please join with us in electing Hopkins to the Legislature. Jon and Janet Knight Spokane


Brown an excellent legislator

I am disappointed to see those silly Republican advertisements against Rep. Lisa Brown, one of our city’s finest state representatives.

Throughout Brown’s career she has been a courageous advocate for children, senior citizens and all families. Spokane people will be most fortunate to have Brown represent them in the state Senate. Ester Karier Spokane

Moyer dedicated, compassionate

Sen. John Moyer is caring, honest and compassionate. Few care as much about the 3rd District as Moyer. He really is making a difference.

Moyer is working toward cost-efficient health care to meet the needs of Washington and, more importantly, of the 3rd District. He is a physician who knows and understands the need for quality health care for all.

Moyer is trying to find alternatives to welfare. Welfare should be a helping hand, not a trap. He cares about families. Society depends on healthy families. The best way to help is to take care of the next generation, for they are our future. Moyer has my vote because I trust him. Demeris L. Skaggs Spokane

Moyer’s campaigning shameful

A negative campaign is one that focuses mainly on a candidate’s opponent, distorting the politics, personality or face of the opponent. Most people disapprove of negative ads and distrust a candidate who resorts to this tactic.

Sen. John Moyer, who has a reputation of being a gentleman, has, with the help of the state Republican Party, launched just such a vicious attack on Rep. Lisa Brown. Shame on him for resorting to dirty politics. Is there nothing he won’t do to get what he wants? Heidi Gann Spokane


Remember bad old days and vote Senn

Remember the good old days? The days when losing your job meant losing your health insurance also? Remember those days when if you became too sick to work you also lost your health insurance?

You were unable to find another health insurance company because now you had a pre-existing condition. Remember the days when the insurance companies’ rate increases were approved without the insurance commissioner asking if they were justified? Those days are gone - for now.

They are gone because our insurance commissioner, Deborah Senn, has fought for our rights, the consumers’ rights. She has done an excellent job and should be retained as our insurance commissioner. David Adams Spokane

Senn’s inattention will hurt public

The public is best served when the state insurance commissioner has the capacity to work with the insurance industry instead of as an adversary. Like many professions, the best protection for the public occurs when the profession polices itself.

The Washington Association of Life Underwriters, through its ethics procedures, endeavors to accomplish this by bringing misconduct cases to the commissioner for disciplinary action. Over the last 50 years I have served as local and state president, as well as state ethics chairman for several years.

I have observed that under prior commissioners, when the state association reported documented misconduct, the commissioners have responded quickly to take disciplinary action. The incumbent commissioner does not seem willing to work with the industry. Consequently, the team approach to correcting malfeasance has suffered.

Recently, one of the most unethical and damaging actions that I have witnessed in over 50 years was meticulously documented and sent to the commissioner for action. No action was taken by the commissioner and the agent is free to continue the same damaging practices.

Anthony Lowe, who has a record as a successful prosecutor, will not tolerate this kind of abuse to the public. His stature of having served as a former legislative assistant in the U.S. Senate and as counsel for the Washington state Senate will give us the leadership so badly needed in the insurance commissioner’s office. Eugene B. Bronson, CLU Spokane

Replace Senn now

I’m tired of hearing about all the “great things” Insurance Commissioner Deborah Senn has done for Washington consumers. She has singlehandedly destroyed one of the best benefits I can give our employees: quality health care insurance.

For the past several years, we have offered a very comprehensive health care package to our employees. Because of Senn’s actions and attacks on the health care industry, I could no longer offer the same (or comparable) package to our employees this year. It was no longer even available, at any price. We had to offer a reduced package at an increased cost, which hurts both our employees and our company.

With Washington rapidly becoming the No. 1 welfare state in the nation, the best thing we can do to save our small businesses and provide quality health care for their employees is to replace Senn now. Nathan S. Batson, president American Electronic Sign, Spokane

Look who’s against Senn, Belcher

Again, the money boys and their big bucks are working to take out Deborah Senn, our fighting insurance commissioner, and Jennifer Belcher, our commissioner of public lands.

Insurance and timber corporations can’t wait to get these two women out of office because they’re doing their jobs far too well - protecting the public.

Senn and Belcher go all out to protect us, the ordinary citizens. They risk their elected positions to stand up for us, but they do it because they choose right over might. That rubs the big corporations and special interest groups the wrong way. Sally Jackson Spokane


Keep tradition, not initiative

Hound hunting has been an ethical hunting practice for generations. I consider it an American tradition.

I have been a hound hunter for years. Hound hunters I have known are wonderful, caring people who are concerned about wildlife management and habitat loss.

Bear, cougar and bobcat populations are thriving in Washington. Both bear and cougar are the major cause of elk calf mortality. Cougars are the primary cause of mortality in the small population of endangered woodland caribou. Black bears are a significant cause of damage to saplings in Western Washington forests.

Hunting bear without dogs is difficult and hunting cougar is almost impossible. Of 235 cougar tags purchased in 1994, only 121 cougars were killed. Of those, one was taken by a hunter without dogs.

California, which banned cougar hunting, has had numerous confrontations between cougars and mankind, including two people killed in 1994. Taxpayers now pay $80,000 a year per hunter to track and kill cougars.

For a more realistic view of hound hunting, read or watch, “Where the Red Fern Grows.” Then vote no on Initiative 655. Keep our American traditions alive. Diane Moe Mead

Vote to end unfair, barbaric methods

Having been a hunter most of my life, I’ve grown to appreciate and love the outdoors. With the political season upon us, we all have a chance to let our voices be heard. That’s why I’m backing a citizens’ initiative and not a political scam.

Pick up your voters’ pamphlet and read the opposing arguments on Initiative 655. Read the complete text and make your own choice.

The hunting methods involved are simply barbaric, cruel and unfair. Hopefully, we can rise above the falsehoods and scare tactics and make the hunt fair.

I contacted two biologists from Montana and these calls made me more assured of my stand on this. They don’t allow hounds and bait and the results are simple. Nature balanced itself out with a rise and fall in the predator population. Yet they allow a very generous sport hunting season. Is this Utopia or what?

I love hunting and will always continue to support it when it’s done fairly and ethically. But truth be known, there is no logical or fair argument for the bait and hound hunt as it exists. Have a great hunting season, and for fairness’ sake, please vote yes on I-655. Myron D. Horn Stratford, Wash.

Give animals a sporting chance

This is an urgent plea for Washingtonians to vote yes on Initiative 655 and for Idaho voters to vote yes on Proposition 2. Even if you hunt, please vote yes to give the animals a sporting chance. Kerry Masters Liberty Lake


Moe an exceptional candidate

I was pleased to read your newspaper has endorsed Superior Court Commissioner Royce Moe on two separate occasions. Moe is an exceptional candidate. He has the judicial temperament, experience, dedication and legal acumen to be a first-rate Superior Court judge.

I am surprised Moe has not already been elevated to the position he seeks. Indeed, unlike his challenger, Moe has a wide experience in all matters affecting the Superior Court.

Moe has fulfilled the judicial function in domestic relations disputes, probate disputes, landlord-tenant disputes, personal injury settlements, domestic violence disputes, mental health commitments, creditor disputes, interstate jurisdictional disputes - in essence, just about every aspect of civil law.

Like his opponent, Moe also has a wide depth of experience in the area of criminal law, partly as a consequence of the tough decisions he has repeatedly made from the bench in the juvenile court system.

I congratulate The Spokesman-Review for supporting a fine candidate for the Superior Court bench. Dennis C. Cronin, attorney Spokane


Nethercutt repays corporate backers

As usual, Edwin Davis (“Nethercutt understands forest threat”) and Opinion editor John Webster speak for the greedy timber industry and political pawns like Rep. George Nethercutt by blaming “environmentalists” for the severity of this year’s forest fires.

In truth, the Salvage Logging Rider, which Nethercutt supports, wasn’t passed to expedite fire-prone or disease-ridden forests. It was a reward to big timber corporations for bankrolling anti-environmental candidates into office. It expedites logging, all right, but of healthy, ancient forests - the last 5-10 percent in the country.

Why do you suppose regular citizens, labeled “rabid environmentalists,” would object to Davis’ and Nethercutt’s idea of forestry, which advocates overlogging, clearcutting and trashing fragile fish spawning habitat? It’s because we are more concerned with the long-term economic and environmental viability of the Northwest than with the profit margin of multinational corporations that have a stake, politically and financially, in exploiting the very last stand of old growth.

Nethercutt voted to suspend all laws that protect our ancient forests. He voted to cut citizens out of appealing bad management of our public forests. He voted to allow a massive binge of overcutting in our public forests.

We deserve better representation. Michele Pacha Spokane

Olson attack offensive

I have followed the 5th District race for Congress quite closely and have found that there is only one candidate with the honesty, integrity and character to represent the people of Eastern Washington in Washington, D.C.: Rep. George Nethercutt.

His opponent, Judy Olson, has repeatedly attempted to mislead the public with false charges against Nethercutt, each more negative and deceptive than the last. Her personal attacks have become tiresome and ugly.

I am particularly offended by her latest attack, on Nethercutt’s decision to provide a stable home life for his children while performing his duties in Washington, D.C. Has Olson no shame? Allison Schuster Spokane

Fire Gingrich’s faithful servant

Time for a geography lesson.

George Nethercutt was elected to represent the people of Washington state’s 5th Congressional District. Newt Gingrich lives in Washington, D.C.

Over 95 percent of the time, Nethercutt has done whatever Gingrich wanted him to do. More-stringent rules to control E-coli, continuation of student loans, ban on assault weapons, Medicare as we know it, clean air and water acts, and on and on - forget it! If Gingrich doesn’t want it, Nethercutt goosesteps right along with him.

Get rid of Nethercutt now, while there is still time to save our state. Vince Beck Colbert

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