Letters for August 27, 2009

Herger’s terrorism blessing

Re “Stretching the truth” (From This Corner, by Robert Speer, Aug. 13):

Recently Congressman Wally Herger (R-Chico) held a town hall meeting in Redding. Citizens were invited to make comments. One man proudly announced that he was a “right-wing terrorist.” Mr. Herger smiled and said into the microphone, “Amen!” and then a large crowd rose to their feet and cheered as he called the man a “great American.”

When Americans stand and cheer for terrorists, at home or abroad, that is when America loses the War on Terror; that is when American forces fighting and dying for our freedom and democracy are disgraced! May we never take their courageous service and sacrifice for granted, and let us not forget the horror of the Oklahoma City bombing, where the innocent victims suffered and died at the hands of “right-wing terrorists” here at home!

What exactly is Mr. Herger’s position on terrorism? Are some terrorists OK? Why is Mr. Herger, a publicly elected official, giving his blessing, his “Amen,” to a self-described terrorist in front of a group of cheering people? Is that legal?

Wally Herger owes the people he claims to represent an apology and a public statement about his position on terrorism. Tell Mr. Herger what you think! Call (530) 892-1555, fax (530) 589-7922, or e-mail <script type="text/javascript" language="javascript">{ document.write(String.fromCharCode(60,97,32,104,114,101,102,61,34,109,97,105,108,116,111,58,119,97,108,108,121,64,119,97,108,108,121,104,101,114,103,101,114,46,99,111,109,34,62,119,97,108,108,121,64,119,97,108,108,121,104,101,114,103,101,114,46,99,111,109,60,47,97,62)) } </script>.

Is Herger a hypocrite? Hmmm? Read this story from the Mount Shasta Herald and judge for yourself.

Jill Gardner
Mount Shasta City

Two views on health care

When the Medicare program was formed in the 1960s, opponents denounced it as a threat to liberty and as an example of government “tyranny.” To the contrary, Medicare has proven to be a popular program among senior citizens because it pays for medical care with one’s own physician without denying care for “pre-existing conditions.”

Why not build upon it by extending coverage for all citizens from birth through old age?

Health care as it currently operates is based on a system in which denial of legitimate claims serves to increase the insurance company’s profit. Under the present system of private health insurance, an increasing number of responsible, hardworking, taxpaying citizens who suffer serious health crises are forced into bankruptcy because they cannot pay medical bills despite being covered by insurance. Any one of us, or someone we care about, can experience an unexpected accident or illness.

President Obama was elected in part because the majority of citizens want improved health care for all—not dependent on one’s employment or the arbitrary rationing of services by insurance companies. It is distressing to consider the small fortunes made by insurance-company CEOs while average people (including millions of children) struggle without adequate care. It is a moral imperative to address meaningful health-care reform immediately.

Silona Reyman

I can’t believe how many Obama supporters won’t even take the time to question his health-care reform. The language alone should be a red flag that this can’t be good. The language in the bill is purposely deceptive.

Virtually every section can be interpreted many different ways. This bill should be scrapped and the whole process started over with real bipartisan input.

Daryl Vercruyssen

Raves for Spice Creek

Re “Foreign flavors” (Chow, by Emiliano Garcia-Sarnoff, Aug. 20):

How could you allow this Emiliano Garcia-Sarnoff guy to review a restaurant like Spice Creek Café? It’s obvious he’s an old crabby guy who has never experienced truly fine dining before. He does mention that the overall ambiance “combines into an aura of enveloping intimacy that allows one’s full attention to rest where it ought to, on one’s dining companion, and on the food.” Why the hell, then, did he feel it necessary to be writing about the silly kids he sees out the window? After reading this article, my friend summed up Emiliano’s review perfectly—journalistic masturbation.

Too bad it was at the expense of Spice Creek. They deserve five out of five points for their efforts with the ambiance, creativity, exciting flavors, and value they give. Chico should feel very lucky to have this restaurant here. I sure do!

Also, Garcia-Sarnoff should know that John Cage’s 4’33” is not a musical piece wherein the musicians make no sounds; rather it is wherein the piano makes no sounds.

Next time, please get a real person to do restaurant reviewing instead of a sesquipedalian who seems to know squat about fine dining.

Pamela Laughlin

Many people I know were shocked to read the unflattering review of Spice Creek Café in last week’s paper. Spice Creek is one of my favorite restaurants of all time! I have just returned from one month in the south of France, and the meals served at Spice Creek are as good, if not better, than those of any good French restaurant! Your reviewer needs to get out more often.

The owners of Spice Creek shop locally to buy the best meats, fruits and vegetables. They work hard to find the best wines as well. Becky [Stewart]’s creations in the kitchen are inspired and delicious … the sauces … the flavor combinations … the presentations are truly amazing!! Their restaurant is more than a business; it is an art form and a labor of true love. The maître d’, Brian, personally visits each table, inquiring about the meals, and creating a warm and homey atmosphere. I have never had a bad meal there. I give Spice Creek six gold stars!!

Pamela Kather

Why so expensive?

Re “As work begins, doubt remains” (Newslines, by Robin Huffman, Aug. 20):

Why is it that this job [construction of Forest Highway 171 from Inskip to Butte Meadows] is going to cost $15 million to $20 million to complete when the cost for oil and pavement is $120,000 to $130,000 per mile? You are telling me that there are $13.75 million to $18.84 million in other materials, labor and equipment rentals?

If this is the case, where do I sign up? I want to line my pockets as well.

Garrett Barker

Turn in suction scofflaws

Re “State shuts off suction pumps” (Downstroke, Aug. 13):

News & Review readers should report instances of illegal suction-dredge mining to the California Department of Fish and Game’s “CalTIP” telephone hotline, so that DFG wardens can follow up with investigations and, where appropriate, citations and criminal charges. The toll-free CalTIP hotline number is 1-888-334-2258. Listen for the prompt about reporting a fish-and-game violation (extension 03).

More information on CalTIP can be found on DFG’s Web site: www.dfg.ca.gov/enforcement/caltip.aspx.

CalTIP (Californians Turn in Poachers and Polluters) is a confidential secret-witness program that encourages the public to provide the DFG with factual information leading to the arrest of poachers and polluters. If you witness illegal suction-dredge mining, a poaching or polluting incident or any fish and wildlife violation, or have information about such a violation, immediately dial CalTIP.

Be prepared to give the fullest possible account of the incident, including the name, address, age and description of the suspect, vehicle description, direction of travel, license number, type of violation and when and where it occurred. You do not have to give your name.

Information from the call is relayed to the Fish and Game region where the offense occurred, and an investigation is undertaken locally. If the information results in an arrest, the caller becomes eligible for a reward. (Rewards up to $1,000 have been paid.) The case is then reviewed by a volunteer citizens’ group known as the CalTIP Citizens Review Board.

Jeff Shellito