Letters to the Editor
September 22, 2022
Hail Port Townsend
Editor, the Journal,
Port Townsend has exceeded all communities I've visited in my peripatetic life in being extraordinarily vibrant. Once thought to be in competition with Seattle for seagoing freight, she's rather become enchanting through achieving accomplishments: Perpetual motion, anti-gravity, and agelessness.
Perpetual motion: There's a skateboard park near the harbor. I've witnessed adolescents and one old guy, possibly in this 30s, lean and tough as rawhide, ramp skateboards off cliffs into chasms of concrete and arrive unscathed after loops, curls and twirls on the opposite cliff – indomitable and calm - and at no time did their feet leave their legs.
Anti-gravity: The sloop moored adjacent to M/V El Mistico at Port Townsend's Wooden Boat Festival had sailed around the world twice with the entire family of two parents and three now adolescent girls. While moored, the young ladies rigged a silk sheet on the jib halyard, hoisted same, and wrapped themselves therein, providing a professional quality exhibition of anti-gravity with skill, grace, control and mostly courage tempered by a precocious assumption for safety, all performed for the joy of life and not necessarily for audience entertainment.
Agelessness: Boats built early in the last century presented themselves in their youthful appearance and vigor, an affirmation that quality tells both in endurance and functionality. And then there's the part where M/V El Mistico was not invited to participate in the schooner races as she had for the last two pre-COVID festivals. Thank the Lord for small favors! Too much excitement in the past as the schooners barged the start line: "Starboard" the skipper would shout in order to proclaim his right of way with me quailing excitedly on M/V El Mistico's deck awaiting the impeding crash, which was avoided by mere feet of separation. This year, no wind – hence boredom prevailed on the race course whilst I could act as docent to this old boat. I was blessed with a saint for this adventure. In the past I'd had "those less fortunate" as crew and regretted this decision. This time with crew Mr. M.B. I enjoyed the company of a true gentleman: quiet, accommodating, knowledgeable, witty, accomplished, articulate and well, just down-right great company. At his leisure, he repaired two of my electrical shore power lines and maintained an acceptable level of neatness.
It was a magical experience, and, as a measure of the joy I experienced, once moored at M/V El Mistico's boathouse on Oakland Bay, I slept a dreamless 13 hours straight. Too much good fun with life!
James Poirson, Shelton
This has to stop
Editor, the Journal,
So, now we know who the true xenophobic, racist hypocrites are. At last true character comes out. In response to ex-President Trump's attempt to bring order and control to our southern border, enforcing our country's laws, Democrat-led cities and states put out a clarion call to all the world that those who enter our country illegally can come to their city as it is a sanctuary city, a city of protection and safety where every illegal immigrant is welcome. President Joe Biden takes office, reverses and undoes Trump's successful border policy while rolling out the red carpet, a finger to the laws of our land, and the world takes heed. A crystal-clear invitation to all, and thus began the daily floods of people from over 100 countries. This humanity crisis lies in the lap of President Biden. He caused it, it is his to solve. Do Democrats really believe the problem they created can remain in Texas? The problem is, they don't even know there is a problem.
For nearly two years, two to three thousand people every single day enter Texas and Arizona; close to 2 million have flooded these states with nowhere to go, not counting those not seen, so when, out of desperation and lack of federal help, or any media or presidential acknowledgment that there even is a problem, border governors bus comparative handfuls of illegal immigrants to the cities that earlier have loudly proclaimed they would welcome them.
These migrants were asked, signed waivers, given maps and knew where they were going. How did these "sanctuary" cities react to receiving illegals? No way! Not in our backyards. Accusing border governors of "kidnapping and trafficking humans," these sanctuary mayors piled these illegals on buses themselves and "trafficked" them to someone else's backyard.
Why was Biden not called a human trafficker when he secretly shipped out planeloads of illegals in the dark of morning to various parts of the country? Yep, it sounds to me that the true racist xenophobic hypocrites run these Democratic sanctuary cities.Border governors have been begging for help from the government, to no avail. Texas and Arizona are overwhelmed and the inhumane process of border crossing and cartel activity is beyond belief. I covered the atrocities, rapes, death, cartel "rape trees, 400% increase in fentanyl in an earlier letter.
Kudos to these governors transporting these people to the sanctuary cities who invited them. Inhumane? Sending immigrants to Martha's Vineyard more inhumane than leaving them sleeping near their own excrement on the streets of Texas cities because there is no place to put them? Border governors had to get attention some way and nothing wakes up sleeping idiots faster than putting the problem in their laps.
Lies of a secured border continue to slide from the mouths of Biden and crew. The only appearances at the border are Fox News journalists and a few congressional Republicans. No president, vice president, Democrats or Democratic-run media. For the security and sustainability of our country, this has to stop.
Katie Groves, Shelton
Gratitude for obit
Editor, the Journal,
Thank you for the Sept. 15 obituary on the life of Larry Little (aka Larry Buck). It was a sensitive remembrance of his life as a gentleman, citizen and friend. To his admirers he was always Larry Buck, the hard-hitting light heavyweight boxer whose toughness in the ring was awesome.
But beyond the squared circle he won admirers for his kindness, generosity and wonderful ability to keep us enthralled with his stories about life. To know Larry Buck was to know a talented man. I count it a privilege to have been a friend of Larry Buck.
John Komen, Grapeview
Editor, the Journal,
On behalf of the Southside School District Board of Directors, I would like to publicly thank Mark Wood and the Wood/Bennett family for improving and upgrading Southside's trail system, known as "Bobcat Canyon." Mark is a former Southside Bobcat student who volunteered to install trail improvements as part of his Eagle Scout program. Previously, the trail system was narrow, overgrown with brush, weeds and downed trees. Mark submitted his project proposal and received permission at the March school board meeting. In August, Mark and his family delivered over 30 truckloads of cedar chips. His volunteers worked hard over two days to refurbish the trail system, which is now wider, safer and a mile loop, winding through old growth forest with several resting benches.
Our sincere thanks to Mark Wood for his contribution to the Southside School District!
Paul Wieneke, Superintendent, Southside School District
Editor, the Journal,
To the writer of the Sept. 15 letter on inflation: So please, stop giving us straw man comparisons to Venezuela. Nobody is talking about that. What we are talking about is taming a predatory and parasitic form of capitalism, which isn't capitalism at all.
The causes of inflation are complex, despite the easy formulas propounded by some. It has a side that comes from the supply of money and a side that comes from the control of commodities. It is easy to blame government spending. But then ex-President Donald Trump blew up the deficit for no reason. The wars were winding down, the economy was thought to be good, and times were generally considered good. Yet, he blew up the deficit with a needless tax cut that benefitted the folks at the top. And all the time he kept citing the need to keep the Dow Jones up. Hardly an exercise in free market philosophy. The same naysayers that decry current spending were the ones cheerleading that.
But let's talk about one cause that no supply-sider wants to discuss. Their whole tax philosophy is driven by the idea that we need ever more investment money. Where does that money get funneled? Well, the place where all investment money goes through. The financiers on Wall Street, which is now more of an idea than a specific geographical location.What was this money used for? Does anybody remember the business news from the last 45 years? Remember private equity? Leveraged buyouts? The junk bond era? The growth of hedge funds? How about the terms "corporate downsizing," "right-sizing" and "creative destruction?"
How about wage and benefit givebacks? Pensions that were underfunded and folded into corporate coffers? Remember how every time there were mass corporate layoffs stocks soared? And remember how we all cheered when our 401(k)'s got bigger? Did we forget all of that? Do you think it has nothing to do with how we got here? Yes, we are too dependent on overseas manufacturing. But what about American jobs that disappeared into nothingness right here?
Here I use the example of groceries. It wasn't that long ago that QFC and Fred Meyer were two different stores. They could compete in the same marketplace. Now they are the same thing. Kroger bought them both. We have QFC in Belfair and Fred Meyer in Shelton. But they will never compete. That is just local. Every time one of these mergers takes place, local jobs simply vanish. They don't go overseas, they go poof. Kroger has followed the imperative of corporations, namely efficiency measured solely by profit. Those jobs that provided economic activity locally were transmuted into profits that go to the top. All of this is turbocharged by supply-side policies. This is how we have transferred at least 10% of the wealth distribution from the bottom 90% to the top 10% over the last 45 years.
Inflation is driven by corporate love of profits. People can laud capitalism all they want. But remember that capitalism is a theory, not reality. Reality is how people put that theory into practice. And the practice of the last 45 years is a drive toward efficiency to generate maximum profits today and to heck with the consequences in the future. The problem is that the people who call themselves capitalists are not really capitalists. They are oligopolists. Monopolists even. They tell you that they want free market capitalism. That's a load. What they want is a marketplace they impose the rules for. The market concentration we have makes it far easier to raise prices with impunity.
Andrew Makar, Hoodsport
Shame on them
Editor, the Journal,
The United States Holocaust Museum has a plaque with this quote by a German Lutheran Pastor Martin Niemolle: "First, they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out - because I was not a socialist. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out - because I was not a trade unionist. Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out- because I was not a Jew. Then they came for me - and there was no one to speak for me."
Is this the obituary and the demise of the Republican Party, or is ex-President Donald Trump's coup against our republic our future? "Give me 11,760 votes," that means steal those votes. "We're going to walk up to the Capitol." He knew the crowd was armed. (He staged a deadly coup and five people died that day) "I'm going to be there with you." His intent was to overthrow the election, and he did instigate and lead a deadly seditious coup against our democratic republic. We all saw the rally and heard the speeches on TV, and that includes the Republicans. Trump's unlawful and violent coup failed.
Take away our vote - destroy democracy. This is Trump's MAGA party platform. We all saw it live - the rioting MAGA mob's deadly assault on Congress while it was in session doing its mandated constitutional duty to certify the results of a free and fair election for a peaceful transfer of power to the newly elected President Joe Biden.
How has our country got into this political crisis? That is easy. Let a German Lutheran pastor, Martin Niemoller, and the Nazi Hermann Goring, and a German survivor of WWII tell you his experience in an article in last week's Journal, a wonderful story, written by Dave Daggett, titled "Klaus Story." Let these three Germans tell us. At the trial Goring said, "That is easy" What is easy? No, not in 2022. Let history teach us how any sociopath/narcissist/demagogue like Trump can come to power.
After WWII, at the war crimes trials in Nuremburg, Germany, the question asked of the monster Hermann Goring was how it was possible to come to power and take the entire world to war. It is estimated 84 million people died during the war. His answer was, "That is easy" Oh my god, that is easy? "Of course, the people do not want war, but after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along whether it is a democracy, a fascist dictatorship, a parliament or a communist dictatorship, voice or no voice the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you must do is to tell them they are being attacked (poor victim Trump) and denounce the pacifists' lack of patriotism (the Democrats) and exposing them and country to a greater danger" (Free and fair elections). Remember Goring said it would be easy. Sadly, as it turns out, Goring was right.
Trump's stock in trade is that he is always the poor victim and then he will rise and be the superhero savior, and he did try to violently overthrow an American democracy to save us from those free and fair elections. Remember the Constitution's oath he broke? When he swore to defend our Constitution? "I Donald Trump do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the office of the president of the United States and will to the best of my ability, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States." His oath is a worthless lie. Dec. 7, 1941, and Jan. 6, 2021 - days that will live in infamy. The saddest day in American history is Jan. 6, 2021. Trump's intent was clear when he instigated and lead a seditious deadly coup with his MAGA conspirators - The Proud Boys, and Oath Keepers, the leaders of the mob to overthrow the government. The Republicans to this day who say he is the leader of the Republican Party, they own the whole insurrection - all of it. Shame on them.
Roderic Whittaker, Shelton