Letters for September 15, 2016

On the cover

Re “Gone to Mexico” (Cover story, by Catherine Beeghly) and “Flip the border talk” (Letters, by Jo Ann Mondon) Sept. 8:

Ms. Mondon asked a question about laws pertaining to Americans, and the editor says “See this week’s cover story.” What? To live and work in Mexico full-time, legally you need an FM3 (long-term visa). Not easy to get. Or leave every six months and re-enter on a tourist visa. May I see your FM3?

Puerto Vallarta is probably one of the most Americanized (Canadianized, too) cities in Mexico. Yes, Starbucks, Walmart, Home Depot, Sam’s Club, McDonald’s, etc. They are all there. How much is your rent? Sure, street tacos are cheap, but the chance of typhoid fever and other sicknesses are there. Authentic Mexico? I think not. I have a friend who drove down to southern Mexico a year ago and came back early after being robbed twice on the highways.

Over 160,000 Mexicans have been murdered in the last 15 years by their own people! I traveled all through Mexico in the 1990s and lived full-time for three years in 2002-04 in Tepic, Nayarit (capital, about 300,000 people, and very few expats) and Sayulita (a popular tourist town north of PV). My sons’ mother was Mexican (long story). It is a beautiful country, with beautiful people, but it’s another world. Paradise?

William Strom


Editor’s note: Last week’s reference to the cover story was made with tongue planted firmly in cheek. For the record, Ms. Beeghly returns to the U.S. every six months.

Down on the Democrats

Re “Review history” (Letters, by Robert Woods, Sept. 1):

The lipstick Bob Woods has applied to the Democratic Party and Clinton’s tenure as U.S. secretary of state can’t hide the neoliberalism (unfettered capitalism) they’ve embraced. Transglobal corporatism is their golden calf. Quantifiable profit is all that matters. Forget about old saws like “What does a man profit if he loses his soul.”

And now, war-loving former Republican neoconservatives like Paul Wolfowitz are mingling their money sources with Democratic money sources to back Hillary Clinton. There will be no stopping transglobal trade pacts that supersede nations’ laws. Wars won’t stop until the U.S. is the only superpower in the world—as deemed in the neocons’ Project for the New American Century.

Also, please Google wikileaks/clintonfoundation to learn of the pay-for-play schemes set up to receive money from hugely wealthy, undemocratic dictators of the world. The Saudis today are slaughtering Yemeni with weapons the State Department didn’t sell them until the Saudis gave a multimillion-dollar donation to the Clinton Foundation.

The Democrats’ bowing to neoliberalism and neoconservatism is the exact opposite of honoring international law. I don’t like it.

Linda Furr


Standing with Trump

Re “Stand by your man” (Second & Flume, by Melissa Daugherty, Sept. 8):

I take offense to Ms. Daugherty’s assumption that it “takes a special person to agree with [Donald] Trump’s xenophobic rhetoric, his racist and misogynistic screeds …” Really? Are you calling all Trump supporters hateful names? First, Trump has apologized for his inappropriate rhetoric. As Hillary has “apologized” for putting our national security at risk for her inappropriate use of a private email server! A much bigger “mistake,” and she was not indicted because we have a corrupt government, so yes, so far no laws broken. Second, Trump is not a politician, and had a lot to learn in a short time!

Trump has been giving speeches and rallies weekly and biweekly about his policies, so if you listened to them, you might know what he envisions for America, but my favorite was the speech/rally in Phoenix where he introduced his “angel moms and dads”—parents who have heart-wrenching stories about how their children were killed by illegals! There are so many! So Trump’s first order of business is to keep Americans safe! Somehow that’s wrong? Ask Ray Tranchant, whose 16-year-old daughter Tessa was killed by illegal [drunken driver] Alfredo Ramos Really, name-calling?

Paula Garcia


Trump’s policies are on his website. For the economy, Trump wants to “reduce the burdens on the American economy and create fair trade deals.” He wants tax reform, including no taxes on childcare expenses. Trump wants regulatory reform, trade reform, energy reform, to repeal and replace Obamacare (for which we are almost all paying more for our deductibles and insurance)! Trump wants to improve and grow our infrastructure!

Most importantly, he wants safety, security and prosperity for Americans! Fences make good neighbors. A nation without borders is not a nation. Trump wants nationwide E-Verify and a mandatory return of all criminal illegals. More about it on his website!

He went to Mexico and met with Mexican President Enrique Nieto, wearing a hat, “Make Mexico Great Again.” Trump recently revealed his education reform, which includes education for all children at the local level (state), and ending Common Core, and school choice for every American child living in poverty (1 in 5)! Parents choosing the school of their choice that’s best for their child and family! Trump’s policies are directly opposite of Hillary’s!

What has Hillary done in the last 30 years?

Jess Furtado


‘Vote third party’

The two-party system has created a world that is horrific, to put it mildly. A place where untold millions of people have been killed in wars, thousands of species have been extinguished for the profit of a few and the environment is on a path to where mammals will not be able to survive on the surface (you are a mammal).

Whether a Republican or Democratic candidate achieves federal or state office, they will continue to represent the insane-with-greed, loyal-to-no-country wealthy humans and their corporations; not you. Stop being motivated by fear. It is time to be brave. Vote third party this election and we will have an alternative next election.

R. Sterling Ogden


Re “Swallow hard and support Clinton” (Guest comment, by Chris Verrill, Sept. 8):

Like Bill, Hillary Clinton “represents too much of what is wrong with our political system … saying whatever it takes to get votes—that calculated pandering, the huge donors buying elections.” It is disgusting, but that’s politics as usual.

Sanders “lost” because the DNC rigged the primary election with voter suppression, disenfranchisement and fraud throughout. What did Clinton do to make it right? She hired the person who was responsible to work on her campaign. That’s telling.

In the past 24 years, Democrats have been POTUS for 16 and yet things have gotten progressively worse for 99 percent of Americans. With bailouts to the Wall Street crooks who collapsed the economy, escalation of the “war on terror”—a guise for U.S. imperialism to enrich U.S. corporations, environmental devastation from fracking, the transportation and use of oil products, the proliferation of GMOs/pesticides/herbicides, pushing dangerous “trade deals” like the TPP that make NAFTA seem mild in comparison, all of which Hillary Clinton supported.

A vote for Clinton is a vote for politics as usual, unbridled corporate greed and increased corporate control of our lives.

Swallow hard on that.

Now is the right time to vote Green. Jill Stein 2016!

Sherri Quammen


Earning their keep?

Re “Cop talk” (Cover story, by Ken Smith, Sept. 1):

The police officers [interviewed by CN&R] described their work as both “hard” and “soul-crushing,” and I am sure that it often is. Nurses, teachers and social workers, among others, might agree that this is true of their work, too. But police work is financially compensated far better than other public service jobs in Chico.

According to 2015 data, of the 62 police officers listed, 25 had an annual salary $100,000-$135,000, 25 made $75,000-$100,000 and 13 made $50,000-$75,000. Generous retirement and health benefits add to these costs. This in a city where the median household (not individual) income is $43,000. Overtime in particular seems to add to individual police salaries.

It may be true, as the officers say, that only police officers can understand police work. But it is also true that Chico residents and their elected representatives can best assess if police officers are meeting the community safety, behavior and service standards that are as high as the compensation we have agreed to pay them, year after year. Regrettably, there does not seem to be widely known and clear performance measures that would contribute to mutual understanding and cooperation between Chico’s police and the residents of Chico.

It is not too late.

Douglas Ferguson


More wordplay

Re “Back and forth” (Letters, by Rick Vagts, Sept. 8):

Joining myself and Feminista Quammen, Rick Vagts plopped down in the letter-writing sandbox and pulled a loudly quacking mechanical duck from his diaper. Top drawer Romper Room humor.

All this toddling audacity inspired research: a slow reading of the missives de Vagts. I diligently searched for a coherent thread, or the odd dalliance with principle—all to no avail. I did notice a reference to Buddha and George Carlin, together in one paragraph; a promising glimmer of intelligent life. But alas, on closer examination, twas the sparkling eye of a deranged spider monkey, pounding on a typewriter, ad infinitum and with King Lear in potentia. In a hundred billion years, Buddha and Carlin shall meet again, no less eloquently without Vagts: “… yellow doorknob Buddha goat Voltaire hubcap Carlin Neptune albatross Cordelia gonorrhea Goneril …”

I do appreciate sweaty old Vagts, jabbing his flaccid spear at my bubbles of sanctimonious greenhouse gas. I dearly hope he soldiers on. But, let it be said, that no heap of half-baked cynicism or spastic Rorschach word associations will obscure the crippling moral lethargy conspicuous in America—50 years into the Anthropocene.

Patrick Newman


Stop the wasteful fliers

I once again have received the Chico Enterprise-Record’s weekly flier. I have requested twice for them to stop leaving it in my driveway every week. I have notified the City Council to see if it is even legal.

Why does this bother me? I don’t look at the ads. Many of my neighbors don’t either. What an enormous waste of resources. We are requested to ration water usage and recycle all that we can. How much water does it take to produce thousands of these fliers? The E-R hires people to drive around town and flip them out the windows of their cars. How much gas is being consumed by these cars? I’m breathing enough exhaust fumes already. I assume the advertisers are paying for the production and the delivery and the paper is making a profit. Is that profit worth the cost to the environment? I wonder what percentage of people take advantage of the ads and how many copies go directly to the trash. It’s probably not great for the landfill either.

My complaints went to the City Council four weeks ago. I hope they take up the matter of the legality and the wastefulness of it. What if every business decided to drop a flier at every house?

Chuck Samuels


Not an Aussie

Re “Hunt for the Wilderpeople” (Film shorts, by Juan-Carlos Selznick, Sept. 8):

Ultra-patriotic Kiwi actor Sam Neill would probably feel amused to be called an Australian by your film reviewer, Juan-Carlos Selznick, given his fine sense of humor. But J-C was still about 2,000 miles off the mark. Otherwise, his was a fine short summation of Taika Waititi’s Hunt for the Wlderpeople,

Paul Owen

Orewa, New Zealand

NASA’s boondoggle

OSIRIS-REx has blasted off! NASA’s seven-year, $1 billion mission to gather real dust and debris from the asteroid Bennu has commenced.

During October, in these orchards north of town, there’s an alarming shortage of both products. Now to convert the wealth from such rare commodities into providing for more inconsequential matters like comforting people rotting in the gutter, rising mental instability, rampant childhood disease, mounting addiction and abuse, crumbling infrastructure, corruption, preservation and even debt.

Actually, we should have answered these desperate screams long before this senseless boondoggle was ever conceived—all to determine the origins of life. Long before this worthless contraption ever waddles back to Earth, many of us, beyond choice, will have already known whence we came.

Kenneth B. Keith



In last week’s Streetalk (“What song inspires you?” Sept. 8), the wrong photo was published with Sherry Sommer’s response. Additionally, the photo of the Paradise Pow Wow that appeared in CN&R’s calendar (page 30) was incorrectly credited. Paula Schultz took the photo.

We apologize for the errors. —ed.