Letters for September 10, 2009

Utility is not useful

Re “Paying Sierra Pacific’s bills” (Guest Comment, Feb. 21, 2002):

I was on NVEnergy’s “equal pay plan.” My utility bill was $101 per month, then went up to $160 per month. Due to a layoff in the family, I was late with three payments and that’s when all hell broke loose. Now I have a bill for more than $550, which I will never get ahead of because you also have to keep up the current monthly bill. I have a medical condition that requires a breathing machine so I have to have electricity; however, I was told by NVEnergy customer service that they can still turn off the gas. There is no assistance in the community to help with payment of this bill. Guess I will have to not pay rent or go without food until this bill is paid in full. This situation is never going to get any better. They are going to keep up with their rate increases until utility costs are going to be as much as rent in this community.

Laura Frolich

Murder is bad

Is it just me, or does the murder of Jasmine Fiore seem especially sick?

In our society, where anyone can be famous for absolutely nothing, now this “cosmetically altered” person is known not for any contribution to humanity but for her gruesome demise, a corpse in a suitcase in a trash bin.

That’s not nothing, strangulation and mutilation.

What this is, is a keynote of disconnection. Speed boats. Breast implants. Any intrinsic worth or talent is of no interest in the equation.

It’s disgusting this girl was murdered. But it’s also disgusting that her life and her livelihood was centered in a world of objectification and sexism, so playful.

Yet bad choices shouldn’t mean death-by-lover; they should be merely embarrassing mistakes. Move on.

Wall-to-wall sexism, exploitation, even exploitation of cosmetic surgery, is big business in this world. It beats the heck out of geopolitical stability. It affects every relationship—even healthy ones—but normal sexuality, absolutely powerful, is meaningless to the types who are either taught or are unable to perceive a human being as anything but a recycled, replaceable widget.

And in that mix, raking in the bucks, Ms. Fiore met a guy who, as with many others, thrived in this notion of media-driven celebrity as much as the former soon-to-be-strangled-corpse swimsuit model.

No time for that. They’ll be too busy Googling “Jasmine Fiore” for all the “hot” pictures.

Craig Ayres-Sevier

Anonymity is two-faced

Re “Bike louts” (Letters to the Editor, Aug. 20):

To Name withheld: You toot your own horn so well that it’s a shame you didn’t mention your name so we could give you a gold-plated helmet. I think your exploits at avoiding goat heads should not go unrewarded. Are you one of the indestructible road warriors riding four abreast? Try doing that on Sun Valley Boulevard.

Joe S.
Sun Valley

Politics is ugly

Re “Democracy Inaction” (Feature story, Aug. 20):

“Who the hell would want this job?” There is nothing more vile on heaven and earth than the “career politician.”

“I’ve reached my term limits, what can I get elected to next?”

It doesn’t take a lot of effort to reach under your chair and pick up the briefcase full of hundred dollar bills.

John Fisher

Survival is captivity

Re “Animal house” (Arts & Culture, Aug. 20):

Whenever I read an article like this, I cringe. It seems that many wildlife sanctuaries are out to vilify those who do responsibly own exotic animals. Yes, there are people who do mess up. Or, who have bad things happen to them they could never have foreseen. Life is like that. Sanctuaries are there for these kinds of situations. There are also many people out there who do responsibly and successfully own exotic animals, even animals like big cats. These animals offer something that our ordinary domestic pets cannot: A unique, intense relationship that is really hard to describe in words. The ownership and use of animals is one of humans’ most cherished and fundamental rights, much more fundamental than many rights elucidated in the Constitution. We share this world with the animals. We depend on them, they depend on us. As far as companion animals go (of any kind, not just dogs and cats), study after study has shown that there are substantial benefits to both human and animal when they choose to become friends. Many exotic species are in serious trouble. Habitat destruction is the biggest enemy. It is now to the point, for instance where India just admitted that there may be just 1,000 tigers within its borders. There were 5,000 just 10 years ago. And 50,000 or more 100 years ago. Captive husbandry of these animals is their only realistic hope for survival. Cats are lucky because they adapt extremely well to captivity. This may be what saves them. Zoos can’t do it alone. They do not have enough cage space to maintain genetic diversity. All kinds of people who can properly care for these animals should be allowed to have them—zoos, sanctuaries, wildlife parks, circuses, magic shows and even pet owners. It might amaze you to learn that the private “pet owners” of big cats also have the best safety record of all classes of big cat owners, and by a significant margin. These same folks have also solved many of the husbandry problems faced by many captive animals. And these practices have been adapted by zoos, etc. Finally, these private owners also have the happiest animals because they truly love them, and care about them—and their charges love them back. So please consider that there is a much bigger picture of the exotic animal world than has been presented in this article. Exotic animal owners are not criminals. Many have facilities better than many zoos. Many have more experience than degreed zookeepers. All of them care about their animals and cannot imagine a future without lions, tigers, etc. Extinction is forever. Help prevent it by allowing responsible exotic animal ownership!

Tim Stoffel

Meaning is deceptive

Re “That’s just semantics” (Editorial, Aug. 27):

While we are on the subject of misleading hyphenated compound words, let’s consider “single-payer.” As in single-payer health care. Sounds great! I wonder who the single payer is. Maybe it’s some rich guy who wants to spend all of his money real quick.

Common sense tells me that there is no single payer at all. Rather, the real meaning is that I have to chip in for everyone else to go to the doctor. I assume that will include that lady in my office who runs to the doctor every week because she thinks that she or one of her daughters has some medical emergency. When this new system begins, I sure hope we can get rid of HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996). If I am going to pay for all of her medical bills, I want to know what I am paying for.

The last I checked, letting a larger entity pay for something never lowered the price. If my employer agreed to pay for my gasoline expenses, I would not look for the lowest priced gas station or worry about conserving fuel. I only do that because I have to pay from my own pocket. Maybe I’m wrong. In this example, the government will be involved and the government will be more efficient than me, right?

Bubby Coffey


Re “Racing for the sun” (Green, July 23):

Plans for a coal power plant at the Toquop Wash north of Mesquite have not been dismissed, as we incorrectly reported.