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Letters to the Editor for Sept. 5

Wednesday, September 5, 2012
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Gazette story on state police pot bust lacked critical context

The news editor for The Daily Gazette played ball with law enforcement with this misleading Aug. 31 headline, “Massive Pot Sweep ‘Home Run’ for police.” The amount of pot seized represents a minuscule percentage of the marijuana available on the black market.

But the headline would lead readers to believe that this eradication actually will have a deterrent effect on anyone’s ability to obtain the drug in the Capital Region.

The Daily Gazette provided a platform for law enforcement to show off another symbolic victory in the war on pot. [State police] Maj. Charles Geuss, who supervised the operation, claims in the story that pot cultivation is like any other crime in that there’s no room to tolerate it. Where’s the victim in this crime scene? The state police didn’t even make a single arrest.

Geuss goes on to say, “From my perspective, anytime we can get these plants and keep the drug off the streets — that’s a home run.” His comment make him appear to be clueless to the reality that marijuana is a major black market commodity.

The Gazette and other print media have written this same story over and over without providing any context of the public’s changing views on this issue. For instance, the most recent polling, a national Rasmussen Reports poll, found that 56 percent of Americans favor regulation and legalization of pot.

There are three states (Colrado, Washington and Oregon) that have legalization initiatives on the November ballot. Not to mention the 17 states that have legalized pot for medicinal use. This trend of tolerance toward pot is moving against this use of scarce police resources.

I do give the reporter for this story, Justin Mason, credit for meticulously researching the cost to taxpayers for these expensive and futile helicopter flights. However, I would like to see the Gazette pose tougher questions to law enforcement that reflect the growing sentiment that these eradication efforts are a waste of resources, time and money for the taxpayers of New York.

William Aiken

Schenectady

Amsterdam pedestrian bridge a waste of money

The proposed $16.5 million pedestrian bridge crossing the Mohawk River in downtown Amsterdam, an earmark sponsored by Rep. Paul Tonko from money from the 2005 omnibus spending bill, is another symbol of wasteful pork-barrel spending of tax dollars by an entrenched politician [Aug. 14 Gazette].

This bridge is nothing compared to the $398 million that the late Sen. Ted Stevens had earmarked for his home state of Alaska, a proposed bridge that connected a small town to a island town with 50 residents. Then-Gov. Sarah Palin stated that the bridge was essential, even though the island was served by a ferry. Opponents of the bridge labeled it the “bridge to nowhere.” After much opposition from politicians and taxpayers, the bridge project was cancelld.

However, Palin did spend more than $25 million from another earmark from the omnibus bill to build a road that was connected to the non-existing bridge, thus the “road to nowhere” was built.

Nothing has been mentioned about who will maintain the Amsterdam bridge if it is built. It all comes down to a large expenditure for someone. The only talk is what the bridge should look like. No matter what the design, you can bet that it will have a fence to keep people from jumping.

Amsterdam was a great city in its heyday, but it’s past and no matter how much money you spend on it, it will not revive the downtown. If the money has to be spent, then $16.5 million will easily repave 100 miles of roads in Montgomery County — a far better option.

Jay Janczak

Ballston Spa

Shame on the protesters, praise for the Golub Corp.

The men standing with signs stating, “Shame on Price Chopper” should be ashamed of themselves.

I wouldn’t like to think of how much worse the economy would be in the Capital Region if we didn’t have the Golub Corp. There would be countless families without jobs and a decent life.

All the many charities provided by, or sponsored by, the Golub Corp. would either not exist or would lack the support they are now receiving. Also, many hundreds of retirees, like myself, would not be enjoying a comfortable retirement without the Golub Corp.

The “Shame on Price Chopper” signs should read, “Thank you to the Golub Corp.”

Mary Socha

Niskayuna

The writer worked at Price Chopper for 24 years and is now retired.

Democrats’ reaction to Eastwood was revealing

So the left wing media, otherwise known as the Obama re-election campaign, are bashing Clint [Eastwood] for his appearance at the RNC [Republican National Convention].

Some are saying the old guy has dementia. It is always nice to see how liberals really feel about people when they let their false civility and humanity fall away to expose who they really are.

Of course, Clint doesn’t need me or any one else to defend him. Even at his age, he is still more of a man than any one who is attacking him now. Of note, in his speech Mr. Eastwood talked to an empty chair that was supposed to be Obama, and even without the teleprompters, Obama was never more eloquent. Made my day.

David P. DeVries

Ballston Spa

Letters Policy

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comments

September 5, 2012
7:27 a.m.
wmarincic says...

William Aiken, you mention Wahington and Oregon which are very liberal states with high taxes, high unemployment and very little freedom. Both states have video cameras on almost every corner that send robotickets for speeds just 5 miles over the posted limits, how would you like to get three $75 tickets on your way to work because you accidently went 35 in a 30. Believe me the only reason for those initiatives is to somehow get more money from the average citizen, just the way all liberal states work, look at NY taxes and fees.

September 5, 2012
7:32 a.m.
wmarincic says...

Mary Socha

That is how Unions work, my friend got a call the other day by a union threatening to destroy his equipment on a job site if he didn't hire union workers. That is who supports Obama, unions. It is also worth noting that Strock did a column that stated that those people are not even union workers but minumum wage day workers, don't you love the hyprocracy?

September 5, 2012
5:19 p.m.
Fritzdawg says...

wmarincic:
What does any of that have to do with The War On Drugs hoax?

If anything, I would think that not jailing people over nonsense, would save taxpayers money.

Sure, the cops put on a pretty good performance as they violate people's rights in the name of drug interdiction, but the fact is, even the DEA admits that they still only intercept less than 1% of the illegal drugs in this country.

So why are they wasting our money just so that some higher-ups can get some face time on TV, and give reporters helicopter rides?

September 5, 2012
5:56 p.m.
wmarincic says...

It has to do with the fact that those very liberal states would make drugs legal but the very fact that the more liberal a state is the more intrusive it is in our lives. People vote demopcrat thinking they are voting for more freedom but nothing could be further from the truth.

Until there is a breatholizer for weed it will never be legal. Do I think people should go to jail for it, no, a waste of taxpayer money.

September 5, 2012
7:33 p.m.
Fritzdawg says...

Actually, it was the republicans that started The War On Drugs. They also started the Department Of Homeland Security, and the TSA, neither of which keeps us any safer, but stomp our rights into the mud on a daily basis, and steal our money to spend on nonsense.

Romney wants to impose strict control of the internet.
Supposedly to stop pornography, but I would hope you know better than that.

He also wants to ramp up marijuana eradication efforts, and abolish medical marijuana, which we both know, is not only an expensive futile effort, but detrimental as well.

September 6, 2012
7:24 a.m.
wmarincic says...

Actually it is Obama that wants to restrict the internet, I have been reading about it for years, it is called "Net Nuetrality".

The bottom line is that I think we have a better chance as a country with Romney/Ryan. To tell the truth I wish it were Ryan/Romney or Ryan/Mia Love.

September 6, 2012
7:35 a.m.
gazettereader says...

"Net Neutrality" is the idea that companies can't restrict the internet based on content. It's equal access to the internet for everyone. Why some ISPs don't like it is they want to be able to charge for content. As a hypothetical example, Time Warner would be able to make the Daily Gazette site go really slow or not work at all unless The Daily Gazette pays them a fee to have faster access to TW customers. Those against Net Neutrality say "We need to control the content so we can turn off porn sites". But what they really want is to make their partner sites run faster, and those they don't like to run slower. So Net Neutrality = good.

September 6, 2012
4:39 p.m.
wmarincic says...

gazettereader the issue with net nuetrality is the privacy issue which is also my issue, yes the internet should be an open platform but what I do on the internet should be private.

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