Opinion, Analysis, Discussion

Jayne Nordstrom: What are you going to do when the well runs dry?

July 2, 2015 — 

I woke up happy Sunday morning. As I began to make coffee, I got a sense of foreboding when the faucet didn’t work. My husband, Toad, flipped the pump breaker. Still no water. He assumed the pump was broken and called Cover’s Pump where Rick walked him through testing it. The pump worked, but still no water.

While Toad pondered his next step, I picked up the San Francisco Chronicle. The lead article read “struggling to cope when wells run dry.” I began to feel dread.

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Sandy Spalding: Regarding 'miscarriage of justice'

July 2, 2015 — 

I appreciate Mike Rough’s letter on the miscarriage of justice, June 26. I am also troubled by the result of Phil Lester’s and Sue Laferte’s trial and am grappling with the blindness of justice.

I don’t understand how the judge and the jury could see this any other way than the result of the recession, something that hit us all, something entirely out of our control and theirs too; but I do know that God is in control and there is something bigger in His plan than our minds can comprehend.

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Byron York: GOP searches for strategy to counter Obama winning streak

July 2, 2015 — 

Republicans have tried to pin the lame duck label on President Obama for quite a while now. But for a lame duck, Obama is doing pretty well.

He won on Obamacare. He won on gay marriage. He won on trade. His party was even able to leverage a horrendous crime — the killings in Charleston — to put Republicans on the defensive over the Confederate flag.

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Amy Goodman and Denis Moynihan: 'What, to the American slave, is your 4th of July?'

July 2, 2015 — 

“What, to the American slave, is your 4th of July?” asked Frederick Douglass of the crowd gathered at Corinthian Hall in Rochester, N.Y., on July 5, 1852. “I answer,” he continued, “a day that reveals to him, more than all other days in the year, the gross injustice and cruelty to which lie is the constant victim. To him, your celebration is a sham.”

Douglass escaped slavery in 1838 and became one of the most powerful and eloquent orators of the abolitionist movement. His Independence Day talk was organized by the Rochester Ladies’ Anti-Slavery Sewing Society. Douglass extolled the virtues of the Founding Fathers, those who signed the Declaration of Independence. Then he brought the focus to the present, to 1852. He said:

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Getting Rx drugs off the street — doing more harm than good?

July 1, 2015 — 

Over the next few years, we’re going to hear a lot from the government, telling us what a great job they’re doing in curtailing prescription drug abuse.

It’s going to sound impressive.

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Cathy Fagan: Whose hateful words were these?

July 1, 2015 — 

I was shocked to read the following in the police blotter several weeks ago:

2:21 p.m. — A caller from a business in the 100 block of West McKnight Way reported a suspicious woman came into the salon, but the salon does not provide services for that type of person/hair. The woman then came back and left trash inside the business, and might have been casing the business to rob it. Extra patrols were requested because the woman might rob businesses in the area, because of her race.

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If you can't stand the heat ...

July 1, 2015 — 

I read with some amusement The Union’s article about the Lake of the Pines’ board of directors election. One candidate, in particular, is claiming that he has been the target of bullying. Throughout the history of the United States, candidates and people in the public eye have been subjected to their constituents love or hate of them. We live in a democracy that gives us the Constitutional right of free speech. Do you hear the president of the U.S., the governor or any other public official crying because there have been negative words written about them? No, they carry on with their platforms and beliefs. If any candidate cannot stand the heat, I suggest they get out of the kitchen.

Julie Barnum

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Kudos to the GREAT Program

July 1, 2015 — 

I want to express my appreciation for the GREAT (Gang Resistance Education and Training) Program facilitated by the Grass Valley Police Department and PARTNERS Family Resource Center. My son is a fourth grader and just completed the program. The techniques and life skills that are taught are extremely valuable. I did not realize the extent of what this program covered until I attended the graduation ceremony today. The children participate in community service projects such as retrieving trash and painting light poles. Daily lessons are focused on methods of controlling anger, communicating messages clearly, respecting others, and refusal skills relative to peer pressure and bullying. The staff and volunteers are absolutely amazing and I hope they know how valuable and appreciated they are! Every child in Nevada County should have an opportunity to participate in the GREAT Program.

Jennifer Acree

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R.L. Crabb: It takes a village idiot

July 1, 2015 — 

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Thomas Elias: Long wait looms for GOP congress gains here

July 1, 2015 — 

Few things gall California Republicans more than realizing they hold just 14 of this state’s 53 seats in Congress. That’s only 26 percent of California’s representatives, while the opposition Democrats, with a mere 14 percent more registered voters, hold 39 seats, or about 74 percent.

The GOP had a big chance last year to remedy this, targeting vulnerable Democrats who won their offices by narrow margins in President Obama’s 2012 reelection landslide.

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Charisse Lolli: About county's hearing on Dollar General

June 30, 2015 — 

Residents will find themselves once again in the county government chambers to oppose the construction of the Dollar General Store at Alta Sierra Wednesday.

This is the fifth Dollar General store that has been proposed within a 13-mile radius. Although previous notices have provided incorrect dates for submitting public response, opponents should know that their written responses can be received at the hearing. This hearing is for 1 p.m. Wendesday. If this is passed, it will allow the construction of a 9,100 square foot box store at the entrance of Alta Sierra Drive, larger than their average 7,300 square foot store.

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Betsy Lombard: Taxpayers should have a say on medication prices

June 29, 2015 — 

I am a member of Anthem Blue Cross, Covered California. I use several prescription medications. I patronize Dokimo’s Nevada City. I like the people there, it is a small town business, a low stress experience, and it’s next to a great grocery store. Recently I asked my doctor for a three month prescription for two expensive medications. I took it to Dokimo’s, they ran it to see what the price was. It came back, “Your insurance doesn’t authorize three months of refills.” And Dokimo’s price was about 40 percent higher than getting three months worth at Express Scripts.

I called my insurance company and was told, “We have a contract with Express Scripts to provide this service.” If one company is authorized to provide three months of refills, AND a large discount, then other companies should have a crack at that market too. I want to keep my dollars in my local economy, so that there are local jobs and businesses, and important services available to me here in my town.

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Lou Douros: Juvenile sexting and the public pool

June 29, 2015 — 

It used to be that the public pool was a safe place for unsupervised young teens to hang out and stay cool on those hot summer days. My 14 year old daughter and her friends were at the Pioneer pool this week. A boy their age traded phone numbers with one of my daughter’s friends (despite my daughter begging for a smartphone, here is one more reason she’ll have to wait).

By the end of the day, those girls had received lewd images of this male minor who had an apparently high opinion of his ... maleness.

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Be a patriot: don't drive drunk

June 29, 2015 — 

Eating, drinking and watching fireworks are what people enjoy when celebrating America’s independence. America’s freedom does not allow people to drive drunk. Ironically, it is one of our country’s deadliest problems.

A drunken driver hit me head-on in April of 1992 when I was 16. My education and active life in sports against other San Joaquin County schools ended.

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Barbara Larsen: Bravo

June 29, 2015 — 

On May 30, the Elder-Care Providers’ Coalition held an all day conference at the Holiday Inn Express titled, “The Caregiver’s Journey Continues...”

The overwhelming response from the audience was extremely positive and people came away with hand-outs and materials regarding the many resources and services in our beloved county. I would like to extend a heartfelt appreciation to the following: HelpLine Information & Assistance, One Source, Banner Crest Care Home, Atria Senior Living, Eskaton Village, Cascades of Grass Valley, Partners in Care, Interim HomeStyle Services, Brunswick Village, Gold County Home Care, Holiday Inn Express, and members of the Elder-Care Providers’ Coalition. Bravo!

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George Boardman: Nevada County's biggest cash crop can give tourism a boost

June 29, 2015 — 

The few business development people we have trying to attract better paying jobs to Nevada County like to brag about the “family friendly” environment we have here. To hear them tell it, we’re a refreshing change from the evils you find in our big cities.

That story may have to be revised if proposed television series “The High Country,” described as a send up of the pot growing culture right here in Nevada County, gets picked up by a network and — even worse — becomes a hit along the lines of “Weeds.”

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Marilyn Nyborg: A violent society breeds racism

June 27, 2015 — 

It’s interesting how people project their personal interests on the shooting in South Carolina. One senator points out it was an attack on Christians! Another reminds us the victims were mostly women. This kind of event which has become a frequent crisis is now being called terrorism!

Without any doubt this was a stunning act of racism.

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Manny Montes: The elephant in the room

June 27, 2015 — 

We can no longer ignore the elephant in the room. It has trampled the furniture and is now threatening to collapse the walls; the room will be no more.

The room is our America, the elephant is the Progressive movement. This movement is contrary to the founding principles of our nation, and more in line with the destructive principles of the French revolution of 1789.

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Fred Crowder: Issues with the ASPOA

June 27, 2015 — 

Regarding Don Jeffrey’s June 18 letter to the editor, “Board members are dedicated volunteers” regarding ASPOA.

Mr. Jeffrey, I see that you must be easily impressed and perhaps a bit misled regarding the ASPOA organization. A bit of information here:

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Thomas Elias: Lawn replacement: Mix bag of good, bad effects

June 27, 2015 — 

Listen to water officials from Gov. Jerry Brown down to local officials and you’d think replacing lawns with drought-resistant plants or artificial turf is a pure good, no negatives involved.

They know lawn replacement, often called “xeriscaping” because it can use cactuses and other desert plants, generally leads to at least a 30 percent cut in household water use.

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It takes a village idiot

June 27, 2015 — 

R. L. Crabb

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Our view: Training burns are more complicated than one thinks

June 27, 2015 — 

Fire season is now in full swing and it will be a long and risky one. We continue to face record breaking drought conditions. Vegetation is tinder dry. No citizen can afford to take fire safety regulations lightly.

We should all follow fire safety guidelines and make sure we maintain a defensible space around our homes. But despite the risks we face this season, we are also blessed with an enormous number of people both in government and local business, along with citizen volunteers who work together to ensure our safety.

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Jim Goetsch: The real 'American Exceptionalism'

June 26, 2015 — 

Once again we have a liberal in the editorial section of The Union (June 5) who has totally misunderstood the meaning of “American exceptionalism.”

Mr. Vogel quotes a recent statement by President Obama that our president is now a believer in “American exceptionalism with every fiber of my (his) being.” Since the president has stated earlier that “American exceptionalism” is no better than British or Greek exceptionalism, it’s apparent that neither Mr. Vogel nor the president has any idea of what is really meant by “American exceptionalism.”

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Miscarriage of justice

June 26, 2015 — 

Even though a jury found Phil Lester and Susan Laferte guilty of several charges, I maintain they are innocent. They are two of the finest folks you would want to know. Their accusers lost money in Gold Country Lenders but so did Phil and Susan and so did I. GCL loaned our money on real estate the same as did the banks. The government bailed out the banks but prosecuted Phil and Susie. Several of those who had money invested in loans decided Phil and Susie should be prosecuted because the loans became defaulted. We forgive the accusers but we will not stop our efforts to free them until this miscarriage of justice is reversed.

Mike Rough

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Three easy safety measures

June 26, 2015 — 

There are three things all drivers can easily do to help prevent accidents and reduce traffic injuries and death. Everyone knows two of them, but the third is rarely known. The first two are: always wear seat belts; and turn on headlights day and night.

The third was told to me by a friend who was an EMT/paramedic in Hawaii, where, over a 25 year career, he went to hundreds of auto accidents. He said, “When we got there, if the people were still inside the car, they were almost always alive and not terminally injured, regardless of the severity of the accident. If they were thrown from the car, they were almost always dead.”

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Fear of increased voter registration?

June 26, 2015 — 

As Jim Firth states (“Other Voices” on June 20), increasing registration and voter turnout of legal and eligible citizens is a worthy goal. Interested and involved citizens casting their vote, after studying issues and evaluating candidates, is good for our Republic. I was confused, however, on exactly how he would like the proposed “Motor Voter Act” to be enacted. Currently, one provision of this Act would register a new voter as “No Party Preference,” unless a specific preference was indicated. Jim Firth states that “many of his Democratic colleagues are nervous about that provision of the legislation.” He believes that “the vast majority of new voters will understand that the direction our national, state, and local governments must take will align more closely with the Democratic party.” Is he suggesting that the DMV should make that decision for these newly registered voters, rather than allowing them to make their own evaluation? Perhaps Jim Firth and “his colleagues are nervous about that provision” because they fear that when new voters truly understand the direction in which our government is going, they will make a vastly different choice than he proposes — and I believe that each individual citizen has the right to make that choice for themselves!

Terry McLaughlin

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Leah Schwinn: Diego's donates to upcoming free clinic

June 26, 2015 — 

Kudos to Diego’s Restaurant for hosting a fundraising dinner on June 16 for the upcoming California CareForce free medical, dental and vision clinic coming to Grass Valley Nov. 14-15.

Good-hearted, sweet people own Diego’s, and their employees are wonderful too. If you’ve never eaten there, you’re missing out on a uniquely delicious and enjoyable experience. Thanks also to all of you who came that night to help us fund the needs of the clinic, because it is totally free to the patients!

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Why would Americans accept blind nationalism as a substitute for real American exceptionalism?

June 26, 2015 — 

The core of American exceptionalism lies not only in the gratifying celebration of our beloved traditions, honorable sacrifices, and outstanding achievements. American exceptionalism is the dynamic force that moves a nation of many ethnicities, religions, and political views forward together to right the wrongs and overcome the injustices in each generation.

It is the fearless strength that allows us to look back in history with compassion and pride in our ability to overcome the past and confront the present.

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Jim Hemig: It's all about you!

June 26, 2015 — 

The Union loves hosting events. The chance to learn more about our readers and customers face-to-face during an event is far more engaging than through a phone call or email. Events are also a great way to share information and experiences beyond the pages of the newspaper and website.

With these goals in mind, The Union has two events coming up that will be both educational and entertaining.

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Gary Price: Lion's club donates to Sierra Services to the Blind

June 25, 2015 — 

The Gold Country Lions Golf Team presented Sierra Services to the Blind the Club’s proceeds from the Motorcycle Poker Run recently. The Team came in with a score of 80, which put us in front of at least two other teams, one of which apparently was blind. Richard indicated, however, that there were three blind teams on the course yesterday. The Hammer was presented to the last team and they actually received prizes for being last; a new twist this year.

Thanks goes out to Ken, Craig and Allen for outstanding sportsmanship. We endured the heat and made it through all 18 holes with the last nine completed one over par. Don’t ask about the first nine. Go Lions!

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