Letters for November 1, 2018

One on the cover

Re “The war inside” (Cover story, by Scott Thomas Anderson, Oct. 25):

Last week’s cover story is one of the finest works to grace the inside of the News & Review in some time. Thank you for sharing it with us.

The indigenous populations of Southeast Asia were drawn into that war by American interests with little thought of the long-term damage to societies much older than our own.

The Korean Conflict, a decade earlier, was another misadventure by America. In its aftermath, we allowed a void that was filled by three generations of the Kim dynasty.

Today, we are still stumbling ourselves through illogical overseas adventures that always yield body bags containing dead American troops. Will we ever stop?

I am a veteran. I support veterans of all of our wars. But not since World War II has there been a conflict that was truly “our war.” Those other wars belong to “the military-industrial complex,” as warned by President Eisenhower in his 1961 farewell address. If war was not profitable, there would be no wars.

Ronald Angle


CBD fan

Re “ABCs of CBD” (Healthlines, by Evan Tuchinsky, Oct. 25):

I have been having issues of being able to sleep properly. It was not until early this year that I found out that CBD oil could help me with this problem. I have been buying CBD oil at Hempful Farms and it has been very helpful for sleeping. It also helps to reduce anxiety. I also get a lotion there, which is very good for pain and aching joints.

CBD oil has no THC and doesn’t make people high. It is better than taking prescription drugs like opioids, benzos and other sleeping pills prescribed by many regular doctors that often make people sicker and even result in death.

We need improved Medicare for All that covers and as much as possible encourages alternative medical care—such as chiropractic, acupuncture, naturopathy, including vitamins, supplements such as CBD oil and medicinal marijuana—while as much as possible discouraging heavy prescription medicines.

Walter Ballin


Peeved at POTUS

I am a small business owner and the president’s policies are having a direct negative affect on my business. I’m not writing this letter because I want to influence the upcoming election. I’m writing it because I’m pissed off.

I make cider in Chico, the hard kind, using all apples grown by small farms in Northern California. The first negative effect is due to a decreased number of people available to pick the fruit. Labor costs for farmers are up to 30 percent higher this year due to the labor shortage from decreased immigrant labor. Of course, this translates to more expensive apples.

The second negative effect is due to an increase in prices of bottles and kegs. No surprise, these are made in China, and because of the recent trade war, prices are going up. I could buy U.S.-made bottles and kegs, but prices tend to be 30-50 percent higher.

The end result is that this increase in cost of goods will result in a higher retail price for the consumer. So all this is just contributing to inflation.

Ben Nielsen


Final endorsements

Many people understand that the major issues facing our city are crime, homelessness, transients, financial issues. Andrew Coolidge has led the council on these issues and by far worked the hardest to remedy these problems. There are other accomplishments by Andrew, which are worth noting.

Andrew is a pragmatic, caring and respectful leader. He always meets and talks with people on all sides of an issue. When the city was looking to put roundabouts on The Esplanade, which would basically destroy the historic aspects of the famous boulevard, it was Andrew who led the fight in the community to have other council members reverse their decisions and save the street.

When citizens approached Andrew about trees dying in Lower Park and at One-Mile, it was Andrew who brought forward a tree-planting program to get new trees planted using donated time.

When citizens were upset at the crime issues at 20th Street Park, it was Andrew who recently agendized the issue for the council to discuss and find solutions. When art projects in the city were crumbling and the city was losing thousands of dollars they had invested into the pieces, it was Andrew who brought forward a reasonable solution. Choose Coolidge.

Kristine Anderson Litwak


Who could have imagined these hateful, polarized and contentious times? Our beloved city cannot thrive in this kind of environment. We have to turn things around.

This November, we are voting for candidates who are committed to the respectful discussion of facts, as a way to communicate and problem solve. That’s why Rich Ober, candidate for Chico City Council, is getting our votes.

Rich has been our friend and neighbor for close to 20 years. We know him to be a thoughtful man, sincere in his commitment to collaboration and open channels of communication. He is, after all, a communications director in his professional life.

Rich has demonstrated his commitment to Chico by his years of community service. Rich has volunteered at the Torres Shelter for many years. His solutions to homelessness and poverty are a result of hands-on experience. Ten years serving on the Park Commission indicate an expertise determined to restore our beloved Bidwell Park. Rich is a voice of experience and reason.

Join us this November and cast your vote for Rich Ober, Chico City Council. As Rich says, “Together We’re Chico.”

Anna Dove and Jeff Lindsay


Make no mistake. In the Congressional elections next Tuesday, only one name will be on the ballot: Trump. Regardless of the individual merits of every House and Senate candidate across the nation, this midterm election, surely the most important ever in our lifetimes, is a solemn referendum on Trump and the social cancer of Trumpism.

Here in California’s 1st Congressional District, we have a choice that is crystal clear. During the destructive and disgraceful past two years, incumbent Doug LaMalfa has proven himself a supine Trump toady, utterly incapable of performing his Constitutional duty as a congressman to check or restrain the grotesque demagogue who occupies the White House. Indeed, LaMalfa appears to have fully embraced the corrosive amorality of Trumpism, with its relentless pandering to all that is base and ugly in human nature.

Challenger Audrey Denney, on the other hand, represents the nobler tradition of American leaders who, like Abraham Lincoln, have always appealed to “the better angels of our nature.” Denney embodies all of the uplifting values daily traduced by Trumpism: reason, civility, tolerance, generosity and optimism. We fail to uphold these values at our peril. On Nov. 6, please join me in voting for Audrey Denney.

Michael Magliari


North State voters have an unprecedented opportunity in Audrey Denney.

Raised on a small ranch, Audrey is a former FFA officer and advocate for the beef industry. She has a master’s degree in ag education and taught at Chico State for six years. She’s worked with Third World farmers to improve production techniques.

Unlike the incumbent, who divided up inherited family holdings to maximize farm subsidies, the Denney ranch struggled to survive the 2008 recession.

The daughter of a cancer survivor, Audrey understands the medical challenges and anxieties that can threaten a family’s financial stability. That’s why she is such a strong advocate for improving health care access in rural District 1.

Some are surprised when they see the Denney sign in my yard—me, a businesswoman with 30-plus years experience in downtown Chico. I admit to missing a few investment opportunities in my career, but I learned from these mistakes. In this crucial election, I am raising my voice to encourage friends, former patrons, business associates and co-workers to choose Audrey Denney as our congressional representative in Washington.

Becky Shadd


As I passed a voter registration table, I heard a frustrated young man yell at its volunteer, “What’s the point?”

The point is to register and exercise your hard-won voting rights to continue to build a more complete democracy and prevent the erosion of our democracy. Within just the lifetime of some, since 1920, progressive reforms have been won for women, minorities and 18- to 21-year-olds, giving them the right to vote.

But like many things, rights not used wither and die. Many in America, encouraged by Trump, wish for a return to the days before these progressive advances in democracy when only white males over 21 could vote.

By not registering and voting you concede the field to those who would turn back the clock. Protect and strengthen your hard-won democratic rights by voting for the progressive candidates: Audrey Denney, Gavin Newsom, Kevin de León, Scott Huber, Rich Ober, Alex Brown.

Not yet registered? Take advantage of another progressive reform to strengthen democracy, new this year, conditional voter registration. Call the Butte County Registrar of Voters at 538-7761 or see sos.ca.gov for details. Please vote as if your life depends on it.

Doug Fogel


Sonia Aery for Assembly District 3 is a game-changer, a woman who will fight for all of us, not for corporate puppet masters.

I’m a retired senior trying to survive on Social Security after working for nonprofit services. Sonia says our district average income is $19,000 a year, putting us average folks below the federal poverty line. Social Security folks average $12,000 a year. We need someone who will work for people like us, the working class and the marginalized. Sonia will fix out-of-control housing prices. Sonia supports Prop. 10, which gives communities the right to set limits on rents. Sonia studied regional planning and community development for her college degrees, so she could come home and serve our district.

Incumbent James Gallagher, representing Big Money in politics, is a climate-change denier and opposes Medicare for All. Sonia Aery does not take corporate donations. She will fight for living wages and affordable housing in our district.

Unlike Aery, Gallagher works for his corporate donors, the largest is Big Telecom, voting against net neutrality. If you care about your kids, grandchildren and for all living beings, it has to be Sonia Aery for District 3. Our livable planet future depends on it.

Mary Kay Benson


Tom had to bargain for higher wages or health insurance when he was hired. He’s now stuck in his job. Medicare for All solves his problems. Also, his family saves $5,000 a year.

Medicare for All ends co-payments and deductibles. There are fewer uncovered services (i.e., long-term care). You choose any doctor or hospital.

We save $500 billion in “overhead” by cutting out blood-sucking insurance companies. We have the clout to bargain down drug prices by $113 billion.

LaMalfa opposes Medicare for All because 1) Americans should have “options,” and 2) It’s “socialism.” He’s stupid. He can buy any insurance policy instead of MFA. Socialism? The the same tired argument Republicans used to oppose Medicare when Democrats established it decades ago.

LaMalfa voted to repeal Obamacare without a replacement, trying to eliminate protection for our “pre-existing conditions.” He voted to support a $500 billion cut from Medicare for 2019.

Audrey Denney supports Medicare for All. She doesn’t depend on “dark money” from corporate outsiders. They have LaMalfa in their back pockets. Please vote for Audrey Denney for Congress.

Ralph Slater


Andrew Coolidge is one of the hardest-working elected officials I have ever met. He has taken the lead on crime issues, bringing forward the Chico Safe Now proposals, which are passing through the council and bringing real change to our community. In addition to voting for balanced budgeting and strong fiscal constraint, Andrew brought the LED Street Light Program to Chico. He started working on this proposal before he was on the council.

Through Andrew’s efforts, he was able to get all of Chico’s street lights changed to LED lights. His efforts were enormous and they paid off big for the city of Chico as the city now saves over $250,000 a year on street lights. We were on California’s cities most likely to go bankrupt list. Andrew worked together with all council members to avoid that fate. He listens carefully, speaks respectfully, does his research to make informed decisions, has a calm presence and good sense of humor.

Please vote for Andrew Coolidge.

Suzanne Brayton


Health care access and health insurance affordability are among the top three most important issues for Americans of all political persuasions and across the country this election cycle. And costs of surprise medical bills are the biggest worry.

Fortunately, here in Northern California, we are able to vote for strong people-oriented candidates at both the federal and state levels who will support and work toward the changes that 52 percent of Republicans, 61 percent of independents, and 83 percent of Democrats want. Vote for Sonia Aery, Phillip Kim, Caleen Sisk, and Audrey Denney. We all deserve health care we can use and afford. Publicly run Medicare for All saves lives. It protects families. And contrary to the lie sponsored by the insurance industry, it saves billions of dollars.

Paul O’Rourke-Babb


Many people talk about Andrew Coolidge’s great efforts to save the city money, restore fiscal health to the city, and his Chico Safe Now proposals. Now I’ll tell you why, in addition to all that he has done, he is right person for City Council.

Andrew is a father of two great kids. He has been a business owner in the city of Chico for the last 22 years and works hard every day to make Chico a better place to live. Besides serving on the Chico City Council, Andrew has a wealth of experience. He currently chairs the Butte County Air Quality Management District. His leadership of the last four years, has brought us some of the best air quality in our history. He was a former school board member for the Chico Country Day School, served on the board of directors for the local chapter of Boy Scouts of America; he was a member of the Butte County Fair Board and serves as the city representative to the Butte County Association of Governments.

Andrew is a council member with a proven commitment to making Chico an excellent place to live. Vote Coolidge for Chico City Council.

Dianna Wright

Butte Valley

How do organizations determine which candidates to endorse? Everyone that I’ve been endorsed by has interviewed me and asked my opinions on issues. Curiously, I was never contacted by: the Chico Police Officers’ Association, Butte County Deputy Sheriff’s Association or the Peace Officers’ Association of California, all organizations that have endorsed other candidates in this race.

If I had been, they might have found out that I am generally pro-union, that I support bringing our police and fire staffing up to recommended levels, and that I am supportive of exploring revenue-generating options to increase funding for public safety. One of the candidates they endorsed is on record as having opposed any discussion of a full range of options for funding public safety!

Perhaps they didn’t contact me because I am supportive of increased crisis intervention training and implicit bias training, or that I am advocating for greater community involvement in our Police Community Advisory Board, and the creation of a citizens’ oversight committee to increase transparency of officer involved shootings.

Change is scary—I guess I understand not being endorsed. But not even contacting or interviewing all the candidates seems to be a disservice to [the organizations’] members.

Scott Huber


I am not in favor of having sunrise be at around 8:45 a.m. at the time of the winter solstice! I walk in the park every morning and see joggers, dog walkers, walkers and school children and commuters riding bikes from 7 a.m. on. It’s already pretty dark at 7 a.m. in late October! Imagine the extended morning darkness during several months of the year if we switch to year-round daylight saving time with Prop. 7 passing!

If people are worried about their circadian rhythms being disturbed, we should switch to year-round standard time and continue to enjoy the winter mornings! We would still have plenty of daylight time after work in the summer! And it would be a more natural way of living as the societal clock will not start work and school an hour later in the winter time so folks can get up with some daylight in their lives. Vote no on 7!

Vita Segalla