Letters for October 24, 2013

Trainor needs practice

Re “War and Other Nonessential Functions” (Let Freedom Ring, Oct. 17):

Brendan Trainor claims that polls show that “We the People” are tired of government employees paid better than “Joe the Plumber.” First: Which Joe? The one in Ocala, Florida? Or Amarillo, Texas? Or Whittier, Calif.? Or Seattle, Wash.? Or Cypress, Texas? Or the myriad of others?

Or the Joe publicized by John McCain five-plus years ago? Possibly the latter … who was better qualified to be “Joe the Plumper’s Helper” based on the jobs he was doing at the time. He is that “Joe the Plumber” who has since quit plumbing, dumped his stated goal of buying his own plumbing contracting business, and tried to start a singing career, become a target for corporate sponsorships, to be an author (with the professional novelist Thomas Tabback), to be a “war correspondent,” and finally to became a popular public speaker. He also was the one who did become a talking head in commercials reminding people to convert from analog to digital televisions and an ex-member of the Republican Party.

It is at best highly ingenious to compare Joe’s salary to that of all government employees, for example, Tom Frieden, MD, MPH, director of the Centers for Disease Control, has many well-documented years training in the fields of infectious diseases, public health, and epidemiology and especially known for his expertise in tuberculosis control. Considering that you get what you pay for, I certainly hope that Dr. Frieden is paid just a tad more than “Joe the Plumber!”

Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan? Two fatally flawed policies from the past—one of which the current president got us out of, while he is actively working to get us out of the second.

Large government vs. small government? Wrong question! The correct question? A government primarily focused on assisting and protecting the mass of the people vs. one primarily focused on the problems of the top 1 percent of individuals and Fortune 500 Companies. Yes, the former will, by definition, be a larger government than the latter, but primarily because there are far more of us in the former category than in the latter!

Send the DMV business to insurance company? Sounds like an ideal solution for the insurance companies who perceive their record profit levels as being threatened.

Business licenses? If you research the history of most license systems, you will find that most were originated at the behest of their individual industries to protect their established members from competition. The alleged “threats to the community’s safety, health or morals” were identified not by any government, but by those businesses which were afraid of potential competition. Seeing no organized opposition from the public, government took those industries, with their presumed “special expertise,” at their word and did as requested.

Trainor has an interesting writing style, but if he is to become a regular columnist, it appears that he will probably require much supervision to insure that he avoids becoming simply a “yes-man” for the extreme right.

Robert Leavitt


Leslie uses tired claim

Re “Left Foot Forward” (To tell the truth, Oct. 10):

Sheila Leslie uses the worn-out claim that Republicans give little concern to youth, minorities and the poor.

Now the one thing our leaders are good at is kicking the can down the road. They kick cans on Iran’s nuke issue, on border protection, on education issues, etc., and now on the debt. And the game will start once more in about three months. Both teams play the game of kicking the can. They are world champions at the game.

If we compare time to dollars, and spent one dollar a second, it would take 31 years and some change, to spend $1 billion! To spend a trillion dollars worth of seconds, it will take 31,000 years, and no, that’s not a typo.

If we took our own children, and ran up the limits on our credit cards, bought houses, boats, dope, etc. and then hand the bill too them, that is what this country is doing to the next how many generations to worry about?

Our leaders are borrowing from China, to pay the “vig” on the previous “vig” that was due, that some of our leaders began borrowing decades in the past.

So the honest question might be asked, which side is truly interested in our youth, minorities and poor?

Ron Ryder


Hunters pay the bills

Re “Nevada’s killing fields” ((Guest Comment, Sept. 19):

In a recent article carried in this publication, Fred Voltz published a rant about “Nevada’s Killing Fields,” which denigrates hunters, anglers, trappers and others. Contrary to Mr. Votlz’ incorrect statements, the real killing fields occur in the absence of sound wildlife management programs. Wildlife populations in Nevada today are healthy, abundant, and on the increase. They were not always so. Today, there are quadruple the number of bighorn sheep, our state animal, compared to just 30 years ago. Antelope and elk numbers have shown a rapid increase in recent years and mule deer are more than holding their own. The same is true for smaller animals and furbearers. At one time in Nevada there were epidemics of deadly diseases such as rabies and plague carried by wild animals which often spread to pets and livestock, even to people. Not anymore.

Through highly regulated and science-based management programs, including hunting, fishing and trapping, our big game, small game, non-game wild animals and fisheries are doing very well statewide. This is due to the hard work of Nevada Department of Wildlife biologists, and the millions of dollars and hard work provided by scores of Nevada sporting groups.

Wildlife conservation groups based in Northern and Southern Nevada are dedicated to improving habitats for wild animals and these groups not only provide all of the funding to carry out these programs, but provide the labor as well. Volunteer sporting organizations have funded and built hundreds of water projects (called “guzzlers”) all over the state. Marshes, wetlands and watercourses are improved, and education programs are taught to the next generation of Nevada’s true conservationists. These successful efforts are from the people who Fred Voltz vilifies in his article.

Voltz refers to animal rights groups. How much money and labor have these groups donated to benefit Nevada’s wildlife? Zero! These groups are too busy setting fires to research laboratories and getting themselves listed on FBI watch lists as domestic terrorists to actually do one positive thing to help wildlife.

Voltz asked the question about values. Most Nevadans are much more aligned with hunting, fishing and trapping activities in Nevada. How do we know this? In fiscal year 2011, Nevada sporting families spent $409, million throughout the state, resulting in $38 million collected in sales taxes that went into state coffers. There are a significant number of families in this state who are actually doing something to support wildlife conservation programs. In contrast, the so-called “animal rights” groups only act to destroy and denigrate the hard work and achievements of others.

Mike Reese

President, Southern Nevada Coalition For Wildlife


Re “A Death in the Afternoon” (Letters to the Editor, Oct. 3):

Trapping anything with a heartbeat should be illegal, period! Trapping is barbaric, sadistic, Neanderthal, period! Since you boys insist, let’s have you go first. Buy your trap of choice, set it, and you step in! See ya in four days!

Kandy Hilton