Opinions

The United States could use a little Coolidge – right now!

President J.Calvin Coolidge (Silent Cal) – 30th President of the United States; 1923 – 1929   One would hardly guess from this picture that President Coolidge was considered a shy person. Apparently he loved to be photographed as he is here wearing a Sioux head dress, after he had officially been adopted into the Sioux tribe for his work on behalf of Indian affairs. (President J.Calvin Coolidge gave U.S. citizenship to all Native Americans in June of 1924.)   Maybe it was because he was born on July 4, 1872, maybe it was his upbringing in a family of public servants, or maybe it was merely his true nature, but J.Calvin Coolidge understood that liberty, freedom and the right to personal property can only be realized when government remains small enough, so as not to interfere in the public’s ability to realize self reliance. When public safety was threatened by city police, during his tenure as the Governor of Boston, MA, he called in the state guard to break it, stating that “there is no right to strike against the public safety by anybody, anywhere, anytime.” In 1923, after President Warren Harding’s death, Vice President, J. Calvin Coolidge, was sworn …

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Fact or Fiction?

The Bellingham Herald should fact check their guest editors.  On Tuesday Tip Johnson wrote a three column Whatcom View Piece to scare the city folks about new slaughterhouses in Whatcom County. As usual Mr. Johnson began with epidemics of world-wide proportion. The Truth: Cholera bacterium exist in nature. Outbreaks appear to begin in the regions of India and Africa. The bacteria  can infect any animal, but it is human infection that most often transmits the bacteria to epidemic proportions. We counter this natural occurrence by treating our drinking water , installing good sanitation systems, and practicing good hygiene. The Truth:  The last cholera outbreak in the United States occurred in 1910-1911. Yes, that is one hundred and two years ago.  This was part of a larger cholera pandemic that began in India in 1899 and eventually spread into Europe.  A steamship brought cholera infected people to New York City from Naples.  Health authorities quarantined the infected.  Eleven people died. I am not quite sure why anyone with any understanding of history or pandemics would have read any further.  However, if like me you found yourself mesmerized by the lie linking cholera directly to cows, the rest of the article read like a pulp …

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Sequestration Crisis? You’ve Got to be Kidding!

The blue line on the chart shows the projected federal government spending for the next eight years without sequestration. The red line shows the projected spending with sequestration. The space between the lines is what all the caterwauling, posturing, demagoguery, howling, wailing and gnashing of teeth is all about. You’d think the red line was going to drop precipitously tomorrow. Gimme a break. Methinks they doth protest too much. This doesn’t stop the increase; it merely reduces it by a barely perceptible amount. This doesn’t make government responsible or sustainable. The entitlements today might help some people, but that doesn’t even begin to make up for the people who will be hurt when the bill inevitably comes due — landing on you or your kids in ten or twenty years. It’s hard to say when the crash will occur. I’m thinking sooner than later. This is rampant government malpractice on parade.

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Gov. Inslee Embraces Cronyism with his Green Jobs Initiative

How bad does the waste have to get before the phrase “Green Jobs” becomes such a toxic combo that it disappears from the political dictionary. Washington Gov. Inslee believes the solution to economic success is betting tax payers’ dollars on unsustainable green industry incentives. Favoring any particular industry when governing exemplifies a poor leader. Cronyism: the practice of favoring one’s close friends, especially in political appointments. Government must resist picking winners and losers in the economy and let the private sector determine what works and what fails. An in-depth analyses must be conducted when government funds are the last resort of funding for any program, green or not. Always keep in mind a good idea is often met with private funds because it has a higher degree of success, not the other way around, as our solar and wind manufacturers seem to think. “Without it, I don’t think we would have a local manufacturer of solar panels,” said Brian Heather, founder of Solterra Systems. Government’s incestual problem of throwing good money after bad never seems to end. House Bill 1301 prime sponsor Rep. Jeff Morris (D-Bellingham), wants to make it even easier to qualify for solar equipment subsidies. Those willing …

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State Supreme Court finds 2/3rd Requirement Unconstitutional

Published by “The Olympia Report” written by Jeff.Rhodes Feb. 28, 2013 The Washington State Supreme Court on Thursday lowered the threshold required to pass the massive tax increases mandated by its own McCleary decision and fund a long list of programs supported by Democrats in both houses of the Legislature by overturning Initiative 1053 and its two-thirds majority standard. In a 6-3 opinion authored by Justice Susan Owens, the court ruled that, “Article II, section 22 (of the Washington State Constitution) states that ‘(n)o bill shall become a law unless … a majority of the members elected to each house’ vote in its favor. The plain language, constitutional history and weight of persuasive authority support reading this provision as setting both a minimum and a maximum voting requirement.” That opinion was criticized in a pair of stinging dissents by Justices Charles Johnson and James Johnson. “In its eagerness to embroil itself in the political arena, the majority abandons any semblance of judicial restraint to declare the process of legislative enactment constitutionally infirm,” Charles Johnson wrote. “For the past two decades, the people of this state have repeatedly voted for the supermajority provision, as has the Legislature when no initiative occurred. …

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Saturday Morning Live for March 2, 2013

Host Kris Halterman interviews Ben and Jessica Elenbaas on the proposal to allow Agricultural Packing Facilities (livestock slaughtering) on rural ag land, for the purposes of promoting agricultural diversity, sustainability and marketplace development of USDA compliant facilities.

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Saturday Morning Live for Feb 23, 2013

Hosts Kris Halterman & Lorraine Newman interview Denise Costanton (owner) of Brigadoon Service Dogs and Jason Haack (volunteer veteran).

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A Very Human Response to Disaster

I was recently reading an article on debunking myths of human responses to disasters. Ruth Wraith and Rob Gordon from The Department of Child and Family Psychiatry at the Melbourne Royal Children’s Hospital explained: “People do not panic, they behave rationally unless they have no information or no way to escape. People are not self centered, they care for each other helping those in need where they can. People behave more rationally if they have information and can verify it with people they trust.” This week I attended a meeting of the Whatcom County Cattlemen where the Department of Ecology and the Department of Health introduced new employees and a new water monitoring program. The feeling in the room was that another government-made disaster could be closing in on them. Livestock farming has become an ever more burdensome operation, with shrinking participation due to the layers of bureaucrats and paperwork that have interjected themselves into the process of livestock agriculture. They had come to meet the new agents and gather more information on water quality and help each other to be understood and to understand. Everyone attending was respectful, asking rational, concerned questions about how this program will affect their …

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Saturday Morning Live for Feb 16, 2013

Host Kris Halterman talks to Planning Commissioner, Dave Onkels. Commissioner Onkels gives an update with the current status and results of the Whatcom County Hearing Examiner’s decision on the “Fenton property rights appeal.” The second half of the program, Host Kris Halterman, talks to Larry Helm and Wes Kentch, Whatcom County Cattlemen and Jack Fields, Executive Vice-President of the Washington State Cattleman’s Assoc., with an update on the status of wolves in Whatcom County and Washington State.

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Saturday Morning Live for Feb 9, 2013

Host Kris Halterman talks with Bob Williams, president of State Budget Solutions, about the federal government being on a fiscally unsustainable path.  

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