Letters for April 11, 2019

Congressman in denial

Re “Drastic measures” (Cover story, by Judy Lin, April 4):

Thanks for your [cover story]. Unfortunately, it’s clear we should expect more fires in the state, if not Rep. Doug LaMalfa’s district. As a climate crisis denier (akin to a flat-earther), he will want us to label the next fire LaMalfa #5. I trust he also will invite his fellow climate crisis denier Sen. Mike Lee, and stand beside him as Lee mocks the Green New Deal. Rep. LaMalfa can hold up Lee’s Star Wars posters and President Sexual Predator’s rake to make his “science” clear to the folks battling the fire and losing their homes behind them.

Beau Grosscup


More on LaMalfa

Re “Learning from the land” (Greenways, by Ashiah Scharaga, April 4):

I enjoyed the article on rice farming by Ashiah Scharaga. I appreciate the hard work by farmers to help feed us all. I enjoy rice especially with my salmon and would point out they both need water. We are entering an interesting time here in America, and it seems socialism versus capitalism, and their definitions will be an issue in the coming election.

I feel the need to point out that California rice farmers received $2.7 billion in subsidies from 1995-2017 and Arkansas $6.9 billion, just to mention a few. I would ask Doug LaMalfa: Are these taxpayer subsidies capitalism or socialism? Or corporate welfare?

Howard Myrick


Missing the irreplaceable

Re “No Kondo, no thanks” (Second & Flume, by Melissa Daugherty, April 4):

We fire survivors got a Marie Kondo special, all clutter removed in an instant. When I moved into my house in old Magalia in 2007, I had a futon and my beloved garage setup. It took me 11 years just to furnish the house—pots and pans, couch, etc. Anyone who visited over the years often remarked, “Kind of Spartan, eh, George?” I liked it that way. But now, with my stuff just this side of nothing and although never having been a pack rat, these days, five months after the fire, I do miss some of my stuff, my 11-year-old stuff, much of which I’ll never be able to replace.

George Gold


‘A basic human right’

Re “Demand people come first” (Guest comment, by Paul O’Rourke-Babb, April 4):

Right on, Paul O’Rourke-Babb! Why aren’t the U.S. people asking why our country can spend trillions on war-making after all these years, yet we aren’t allowed to have universal, government-funded health care?

Most countries determined long ago that it’s more moral and much less expensive to provide health care for all people than to have medical funds tied up in private businesses that pick and choose who gets what health care and how much, litigate the justifications, and pay for fancy buildings, CEO salaries/bonuses, and high-end advertising to draw in paying customers (preferably healthy ones). Surely health care for all people is a basic human right.

Linda Furr


Mr. O’Rourke-Babb relies on logical fallacies and demonizing to introduce Medicare for All (MFA).

He incorporates the bandwagon and half-truth fallacies in his statement that the “majority of your friends and neighbors—Republicans, Democrats and independents—want Medicare for All.” The hoped-for reactions is, “Gosh golly, everyone’s wants it, even Republicans! It must be good. Let’s get on board!” But it’s horse crap.

So let’s back up those horses. When specifics are applied, such as, Would you support MFA if it meant delays in access, higher taxes, a loss of access to private health insurance, etc.?, we find that MFA only garners minority support. The whole truth is the bandwagon has few riders, and I doubt many are Republicans or independents.

He goes on to demonize “Insurance … and big pharma.” Yet, insurance doesn’t create costs, it covers them. Yes, big pharma wants big prices. But other countries negotiate lower prices, while American politicians take bribes to keep costs high.

The documentary Fix It states too many insurance choices equals high costs. Bull crap. It states Medicare for seniors, which is unsustainable, is a good model. Bull crap.

We’re open to ideas. Try introducing yours without a commentary that rodeo workers have to follow around with a shovel.

Peter Bridge

Ord Bend

Accountability is key

Re “Mark of austerity” (Second & Flume, by Melissa Daugherty, April 4):

Recently, at a meeting of the Bidwell Park and Playground Commission, employees of the Chico Public Works Department claimed that the senseless cutting down of at least 27 valley oak trees by a crew of inadequately supervised chainsaw-wielding workers with no knowledge of trees was a mistake. That is wrong. More accurately, the hacking down of those majestic trees resulted in at least 27 mistakes—one for each tree.

Those mistakes created an environmental disaster that will take at least 50 years to mitigate. An extensive investigation of all parties involved is imperative. Serious questions must be answered. Why didn’t the people responsible for the tree-removal incident act in a manner expected of high-ranking, well-paid professionals? Do the people who allowed at least 27 perfectly healthy valley oak trees to be removed have the necessary background, knowledge and experience to correctly manage Bidwell Park? If so, why did they allow such a dreadful action to occur? If not, do personnel adjustments need to be made?

A monumental environmental disaster of this extent cannot be swept aside by a presentation and apology at a public meeting. Bidwell Park and those massacred trees deserve much more. Accountability is imperative.

Lee Hirschbein


A vacuous response

The other night, the evening news included a story about a man complaining to the Chico City Council members that they were putting crime-fighting on the back burner. As a follow up, the reporter asked Councilwoman Ann Schwab what she thought about the man’s complaint.

Her response was absurd. She said climate change was a threat to our security, too. And if we can prevent the need for public safety personnel to respond to floods and fires, they will be more available to fight crime.

So, let me get this straight, Schwab believes that the people of Chico can do enough about climate change to improve the availability of Chico cops to fight crime? I can’t imagine a more vacuous response. I think she’s ready to move on to higher elected office!

Tony St. Amant


Dumbed-down America

Following Trump’s primary victory in Nevada in 2016, he declared, and I quote, “I love the poorly educated.” Unfortunately, this has come to exemplify a significant percentage of his base. We see the adoration and the anger as Trump magnifies his vindictive presence to validate a self-love, a delusional self-image of greatness that is really just a sham.

So how did we get to the place where rabid behavior is the norm and three-word chants are the foundation of intellectual inadequacy? Recall: Lock her up; drain the swamp; build the wall. We witness roars of approval when he uses profane tirades to threaten journalists and those he judges to be his political enemies.

Well, there has been a dumbing-down of the American educational system in the last 50 years, where graduating from high school now means you can still breathe; long on feelings but short on critical thinking, civics, economics and reading comprehension.

Support for Donald Trump is not necessarily akin to being a rally-goer. But if you stay silent while the president gives 60 percent of the American people the middle finger while disregarding the conduct expected of a commander in chief, then take your bankrupt morals to the polls and vote for him.

Roger S. Beadle


Poetic justice?

I understand why the RNC hatemongers are out in force doing their best to undermine Beto O’Rourke. For some warped reason, nervous Trump campaign personnel like referring to Beto as “Robert Francis O’Rourke.” I’m assuming they feel his birth name is somehow demeaning.

If O’Rourke can flip his home state of Texas, and go on to win the same states Hillary Clinton won in 2016, he’ll be president elect in 2020 with 270 Electoral College votes. Judging by his Senate race against Rafael Cruz in November 2018, he might just “flip” ruby red Texas?

Unfortunately, true to form, the DNC has so many no-name, unqualified, over-the-hill, controversial, weak, 2016 reruns, with virtually no ideas. They’ll hand Trump the White House unopposed. The DNC has not brains enough to reject the old socialist Bernie Sanders from running again on their ticket, and stop creating mischief against supposed candidates like Joe Biden, rather than taking on the filthy Trump.

I guess it’s poetic justice on display?

Ray Estes


Speaking of Joe

Joe Biden says he gets it. That is not specific enough. If Joe Biden does not get that it was never OK to fondle the shoulders of a stranger and kiss her hair, then he does not get it.

Roderick Gray