Letters, Camden Herald
An Ode to Hosmer Pond
Oh Lady of many changing moods--
Metamorphosing before our eyes--
Summer blue, oh so blue, sparkling in the sun--
Then smooth as a mirror
You reflect perfect images from around your shore--
Autumn turns you red, yellow and gold,
Catching all the changing colors of Ragged Mountain--
Suddenly you turn dark, the wind blows,
White capped waves ripple in angry dance,
Fog rolls in , obliterating even the docks and boats,
Snow falls gently, then sparkles in the sun--
The skiers are happy,
Snow melts and black ice is here
Now skaters, ice fishermen, and ice boats appear.
Ospreys and Eagles glide and dive,
The Blue Heron stands still and waits--
Oh Hosmer pond--may you never change!
By Liz Jochnick
Another straw man?
In his 'Another View' column Paul Ackerman, tries to present to readers what a 'straw man' argument is and how it is used in today's politics. He claims, "the goal of this form of argument is to denigrate the opponent’s image, while improving your own, by forcing them to refute a false argument, thereby having to repeat the lies in rebuttal — which oddly lends more credibility to the substance of the lie by repetition in the media." In simpler terms you set your opponent up to be something they are not.
Mr Ackerman, provides one example that President Obama, who he refers to as 'the master of straw men," falsely accused Republicans for wanting to roll back tax breaks for the middle class. Obama, in his warning that Mr. Ackerman sites, was accurate. Perhaps Mr. Ackerman may be surprised to know that in the the deal to avoid the "Fiscal Cliff" the Republican leadership insisted that the Payroll Tax be hiked back up to 6.2 percent from 4.2 percent. To be fair, despite Obama's rhetoric, the Democrats did not lift a finger to hold the 2 percent tax break for working people. However if Republicans did not want a tax hike on the middle class, as Mr. Ackerman asserts, than why did they insist that increase be part of the "Fiscal Cliff" compromise? I don't see how Mr. Ackerman is example of the straw man argument is very clear or accurate - when in the example that he used - Obama's warning actually came to fruition. In 2013 a family making $50,000 was required to pay about $1,000 more in taxes largely do to the fact that Republicans in the House were only willing to adjust former President Bush's tax breaks for the the rich if workers were required to pay more.
Speaking of President Bush, I think Mr. Ackerman could have provided a more prudent example of the Straw Man if he had looked at the foreign policy record of President George W Bush. Lie after Lie was repeated by President Bush, repeated by Secretary of State Colin Powell, and repeated by Vice President Dick Cheney and reported in nearly every media outlet, over and over again that Iraq with their. 'weapons of mass destruction posed a threat to Us'. Iraq's supposed threat to us was repeated by the likes of Hillary Clinton, John Kerry and political elites of the two major parties. Lies to justify an invasion and occupation that has ultimately turned much of Iraq into chaotic killing fields filled with sectarian strife. The Gulf of Tomkin Resolution not with standing- there is perhaps no better representation of the 'Staw Man' argument than the drive to War in Iraq.
I will say that, today, when many are calling for another war or at least more involvement in the Middle East Mr. Ackerman's comments on the political straw are quite timely.
James A. York
A breath of fresh air
Paula Sutton recently came to my door to introduce herself and ask for my vote for the Maine State Senate. Wow, is she ever a breath of fresh air! I invited her in, sat down and listened very carefully to her campaign ambitions and attitudes. I personally witnessed the enormous amount of passion she has for the campaign. She is absolutely loaded with enthusiasm and energy for this big job! Since then, I have reviewed her website/information containing her campaign. It is very clear to me that not only is there no war on women as the Democrats have alleged, but quite the opposite. She brings to the table her experience of administering a micro lending program in Central America which benefited many women and their families. I feel that women would be well represented by Paula Sutton in the Maine State State and should support her wholeheartedly. Also, last, but not least, it is very important that Maine continue to make a more business friendly environment. This is where Paula's skills of having a very diverse, strong, small business background will also come come in to play. These are just great examples of how she would make Maine residents proud!
Sutton the smart choice
This November voters in Knox County will have very clear choices between the candidates running for various state and local offices, from re-electing Gov. LePage to a number of State Legislature seats held by long-time incumbents, and for the open seat for the newly created Senate District 12.
Paula Sutton is the smart choice for voters to represent Knox County in our State Senate, not because she is a third-generation Mainer or even because she has been a successful entrepreneur-businesswoman who knows from first hand experience how to make a dollar on her own and how to stretch a dollar to balance a budget.
The most compelling reason to vote for Paula Sutton is that she is her own woman and cares as much about making sure a social safety net is there for people who truly need it as she is passionate about creating an economic environment in our state that will grow the overall tax base to afford necessary state programs.
Paula is both savvy and compassionate. She firmly believes that a thriving private sector is essential to providing a sustainable future for younger generations to remain in Maine, and that state government has to be more prudent in allocating state revenues in order to prevent generational theft and out-migration. At the same time, she is passionate about providing Mainers the educational resources and opportunities for future generations so that they can stay in their home state.
And while she understands the need for careful stewardship of state resources, and improving our state’s educational performance at all levels is essential for providing a vibrant and sustainable economic base that can benefits all of Maine’s citizens, she strongly believes that over-regulating private industry inhibits growth of our state economy.
Paula is a go-getter who is not afraid to ask hard questions. She is fiercely independent and will put the needs of here constituents above the interests of partisan politics.
Knox County needs independent, balanced, energetic, thoughtful and focused representation in Augusta, and Paula Sutton will bring all of that, and more, to the State Senate. She will be a tenacious, rock solid advocate for the needs and interests of her district, both for individual residents and the county as a whole.
Puzzled by Miramant's take
The recent guest column by Dave Miramant of Camden initially left me puzzled, as much of it was simply a diatribe against Governor Paul LePage. I momentarily wondered if Dave was running for governor against Paul LePage.
Further reading cleared things up; Dave Miramant thinks he is running against a partisan mirage of Governor LePage's record. Imagine that? Maybe he hasn't met his opponent Paula Sutton yet?
Miramant's comments: "...we can't take any more bullying and obstructionism of the present governor...”; "...he has undone years of good environmental work and created more debt for our state.." ,are just remarkably twisted statements.
Granted it is obvious that Dave does not like Governor LePage, but let’s be realistic about these specious claims.
The past legislative session saw about 2,000 bills introduced, and the governor vetoed 180 of them. It is not obstructionism to veto bills, in fact it is usually the result of fiscal prudence, or the odor of legislative over-reach, that prompts a governor to fulfill his responsibilities of office and veto bad legislation.
Created more debt? Really Dave? Last budget numbers I saw (http://content.govdelivery.com/accounts/MEGOV/bulletins/c7417d) showed the state now has a surplus at fiscal year end, $39.1 million, and a balance in the general fund of $9.8 million.
When was the last time a Democrat governor in Maine put the brakes on overboard spending and waste, and helped the state to show a surplus?
Would it be too much for Dave Miramant to provide specifics of his environmental work "undone" claim. Isn't this just the perfect straw man?
Contrary to the claim, this administration has a very pro-active record trying to streamline and improve the efficiency of state agencies that deal with environmental matters.
In addition, the LePage administration overhauled the Dept. of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, changed the Land for Maine's Future charter to require the prioritization of acquiring deer wintering habitat, repealed the unnecessary 2009 saltwater fishing license mandate, and supported the creation of a fisheries tax credit to encourage private sector investment in fish hatcheries and docks.
No, Governor LePage isn't poisoning streams and dumping pollutants into rivers, but you’d sure think so reading Miramant’s column.
The drum beat about Medicaid expansion is truly absurd. Claiming that we ought to take federal money for three years to expand a program that already costs Maine $2.4 billion per year defies logic. He apparently thinks that after the 3 years of "free" federal money we will magically come up with the hundreds of millions, in addition to current costs, per year to cover the expansion.
Sorry Dave did not knock on my door when he was making his 10,000+ calls, as a former Democrat of 30-plus years I'd have enjoyed listening to his pitch.
I'm for Fulford
I have been working as a family physician for most of the last 30 years in eastern Maine, and have seen first-hand the destructive effect our health system has had on Maine families. I can’t even count the number of patients who sought care too late because of lack of insurance, and have paid the ultimate price for it.
Like many of my colleagues, I now care for families who, through Obamacare, have health insurance for the first time, and are getting the preventive services and early treatment they need.
That is why I’m for Jonathan Fulford for State Senate in Waldo County. The LePage administration, backed by Senator Mike Thibodeau, has refused to accept federal money to expand Medicaid. As a result, over 20,000 Mainers have been excluded from the care they need. Jonathan Fulford will work to ensure affordable health care is available to all Mainers.
Peter S. Millard, MD, PhD
Physician at Seaport Community Health Center in Belfast
Cultural Cuisine thanks
During this past summer, Penobscot School in Rockland paired English immersion students with area chefs in order to offer the community a taste of foods from Colombia, Italy, Spain, Japan and Germany. This was very successful and only because of some very generous people. Our sincere thanks go to the area restaurants and chefs who participated in our Cultural Cuisine evenings. Much appreciated donations of time and product were received from Tom Sigler of Comida Latin Kitchen, Louise MacLellan-Ruf, Melissa Kelly of PRIMO, Chartrand Imports, FIORE Artisan Olive Oils & Vinegars, Suzuki’s, Beth’s Farm Market, Carl Brickett of Morse’s Sauerkraut, The Wine Seller, Jess’ Seafood Market, RAYR: The Wine Shop, Rock City Roasters and Hannaford. These community members made for several delightful evenings.
We would also like to thank all area families involved in our English Immersion program including student hosts and those who prepared meals. Last, but hardly least, we extend our gratitude to those who provided excursions that help our students to solidify their classroom learning. These include Bay Chamber Concerts, Muriel Curtis of Station Maine, The Schooner Olad, The Farnsworth Art Museum, The Owls Head Transportation Museum, The ApprenticeShop and Hope Elephants. Several of our international students commented upon the generosity of the people in the area. One was so struck by this community’s sense of giving that she chose to do her final presentation on this very topic.
Thank you for helping us to provide cultural opportunities for MidCoast residents. It was such a pleasure to work with all of you!
Successful Duck Dash
Erica Harriman, CPA and Deb Anderson, Manager of the Damariscotta Bank & Trust of Union organized a very successful Duck Dash event at the Union Fair to benefit the Come Spring Food Pantry in Union. With the help of many others, plastic ducks were offered for sale and then released at the bridge at the entrance to the Fairgrounds where they then floated together down the stream to the race track. There was a winner.
Thank you to everyone who bought tickets and worked to make this event a success.
The Come Spring Food Pantry serves Union, Appleton, and South Hope. It can be found in the yellow school attached to the Thompson Community Center in Union and is open the second and fourth Wednesday from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m.