Letters for May 24, 2012

Fuel to the fire

The Steamboat Ditch Company has an easement to cross my property—on which I pay property taxes, my animals graze, and which I maintain. Every spring, the Steamboat Ditch Company creates and leaves in its wake 45 miles of fire hazardous materials which they arrogantly expect private property owners to clean up after them, violations of NRS 444.630, NRS 444.635, and Washoe County Board of Health Regulations 040.0101, and 050.145. No other companies with easement rights to come onto my property leave their garbage behind. That our region has endured devastating wildfires in recent years, together with the current controversies regarding fire protection in the county, the Steamboat Ditch Company’s historical “chainsaw massacre” approach to maintenance, and their dumping on private property must no longer be tolerated!

From the Nevada/California border west of Reno, the Steamboat Ditch winds along the foothills through Belli Ranch, Caughlin Ranch, the gully behind Manzanitza, Lakeridge Shores, Windy Hill, Arrowcreek, etc. Is the debris left by Steamboat Ditch Company the cause or is it just a coincidence these neighborhoods have experienced such horrible fires? Once you have had a wildfire burn through your neighborhood, it’s terrifying to have your property’s defensible space compromised.

D. Horton

Defense Attack

Re “Days of our lies” (Feature story, May 17):

Dennis Myers might want to reconsider his defense of Rep. Mark Amodei, since Congressman Amodei chose to abstain from voting on the bipartisan Smith-Amash amendment to reinforce the intent of the Constitution, and thus prevent by statute the possible illegal abuse of power by the president or other government officials concerning the indefinite detention provisions contained in the present National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).

Please see the memorandum to Congress from 28 concerned civic and religious groups, as well as a brief background of the NDAA found in Wikipedia. You will note there that “A federal court issued an order prohibiting the indefinite detention powers of the NDAA for American citizens on the grounds of unconstitutionality on May 16, 2012, in response to a lawsuit filed by journalist Chris Hedges, Noam Chomsky, Naomi Wolf and others.”

Please also note:

Adam Serwer reports that House Republicans, who almost all opposed the Smith-Amash amendment, approved a “hoax fix”: Republicans opposed to the Smith-Amash amendment proposed a hoax fix that “reaffirms” Americans’ right to habeas corpus. Only, the right to habeas was never in question, so their proposal wouldn’t actually do anything. The proposal is a complete non-sequitur, a bad-faith attempt to prevent Smith and Amash from closing a gaping “terrorism exception” to Americans’ due process rights. That amendment passed by almost the same overwhelming margin that the Smith-Amash amendment failed, by a vote of 243-173.

Beth Davidson
via email

River’s edge

Re “Positively Fourth Street” (Feature story, May 10):

I don’t know about anyone else, but when I ride from Reno/Sparks or visa versa, I usually use the river path. Bike lanes are good, but bike paths are much, much better. No traffic, lights, etc.

Tim King

Hate that

Why is it that most of the “hate” letters are from those embracing the religious right?

Generally, I notice that most liberals’ letters are not filled with quite so much venom as those from conservatives.

I’m guessing that Jesus was a liberal, and probably tended towards socialism, rather than cut-throat capitalism.

And that he probably agreed that equity/wealth should be distributed according to one’s service to one’s fellows, rather than how much “capital” one has accumulated.

At least that’s my recent read on “socialism,” which I finally Googled today.

It seems there are many kinds of socialism, but the theme is that the common people should have a say in how the world is run, and that essential services—vital services—should not be run ‘for profit only,’ but adjudicated by a government of the people, by the people, for the people.

So for my money, I positively prefer a sharing, caring world as opposed to a “gimme more” world wherein those with the gold make the rules.

After the hungry are fed, the homeless housed, and the fearful comforted, then and only then should we focus on accumulation of personal wealth.

Please remember, you can vote out a government, but you cannot vote out a for-profit-only corporation.

We’re all in this together, ya know, and nobody gets out alive.

By your good deeds ye shall be known. Not by your bank balance.

Craig Bergland

False facts

Re “Straight to the heart” (Green, May 17):

So this article is saying that the “Heartland Institute” does not “believe” in global climate change (not global warming, as many places are not being warmed)? Is there not already plenty of evidence suggesting otherwise?

There is, and they know it perfectly well, so now they try to cover up that “little known fact” (as they would have it) by posting images of mass criminals such as Osama bin Laden, saying those personages believe in “global warming.” Is this not against their regulations? It is very ignorant, that is certain, but to cost the Institute $1 million. That must be against regulations, just as what they did with the billboards should have at least a fine attached by law enforcement.

Charlie Xzavior
via email


Re “Libertarian weekend” (News, May 10):

Thank you for being one of the only print publications to notice that there was major Libertarian political activity in our state last weekend. The Revolution is not being televised. Please note what is becoming a citizen revolt. A further generational changing of the guard is taking place.

Many Gen-X Ron Paul enthusiasts such as myself are involved. We are running for office as well as doing more than showing-up to Republican functions. Some folks absolutely think we are nutters, but guess what? So is a $560 million debt born on the backs of Reno citizens by the City Council with collusion from Washoe County. We are nuts if things don’t change [and the city must declare bankruptcy]. How about an outside audit instead of the standard, yearly, regurgitated and re-formatted spreadsheet? Show us the money!

S. Rowan Wilson
At-large candidate,

Reno City Council


Re “Headfirst” (Art of the State, May 17):

In the photo caption, Brendan Vaile was misidentified as “Brendan Bartlett.” We apologize for any confusion our error caused.