Maine’s soldiers, past and present, deserve recognition

Monday, May 31, is both Memorial Day and the National Day of Remembrance of the members of the Armed Forces who have given up their lives so that we Americans can live in freedom.

On May 2, 2000, President Bill Clinton declared that the last Monday in May be the day that “All Americans come together to recognize how fortunate we are to live in freedom and to be able to observe a universal National Moment of Remembrance on each Memorial Day,” and to mark the moment with the “simple and unifying way” by observing a minute of silence at 3 p.m. local time, to “remember and reflect on the sacrifices so many made, to provide freedom for all.”

I suggest that it would be fitting to give thanks and pray, for that minute, for the souls of those who gave their lives in the service of our country and for the widows and children they left behind.

Although 3 p.m. is the designated time, any time during that day would be the right time to honor those who have fallen.

Jack Cuthbert
World War II veteran
Bridgton

 

As master of ceremonies for the May 5 Community Send-Off of Saco’s 1st Platoon, 94th Military Police Co., U.S. Army Reserve, I want to thank the people, schools, businesses and churches of Saco and the surrounding communities, Gov. Baldacci, Maj. Gen. John Libby, Saco Mayor Roland Michaud, Saco’s state legislators, congressional delegation staff members, my fellow American veterans, American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars and AMVETS members for their show of support for the 1st Platoon as they departed for their tour of duty in Iraq.

We were there as the 1st Platoon deployed and we will be there again upon their return.

Maine’s veterans’ organizations will be here to support and assist family members of those deployed, whether it is mowing the lawn, taking them to the doctor, or just offering someone to talk to. Maine’s veterans will also be here to support platoon members after their return home.

Thank you, Saco. Thank you, Maine. May God protect the 1st Platoon, 94th MPs, and all those who wear the American uniform throughout the world.

Jim Harper
Commander, American Legion Owen-Davis Post 96
Saco

 

Brunswick would benefit by having Horch in Augusta

 

Fred Horch is your neighborhood resource for all things green.

Horch recently qualified as Brunswick’s Green Independent candidate for the Maine House of Representatives.

I believe in Fred’s ability to activate change within the community that will give Brunswick the strength it is currently lacking and the support it needs to keep the character alive.

Fred’s genuine interest in people and natural ability to listen are two simple but highly effective qualities that we often overlook in a representative. These two characteristics alone make me feel comfortable in putting my trust in Fred and his plans for our community.

He really wants to hear from all of us — those who have lived here all of their lives, those who have just recently made Brunswick their home, and especially those whose views are so rarely heard. All of our opinions count.

My honest opinion is that Fred Horch can lead our town to a prosperous future. Please consider casting your vote for such a respectable figure in our community.

Katie McCormick
Brunswick

 

Palin no wonder woman, just self-serving politician

 

The people who laud Sarah Palin for her alleged values of fiscal responsibility once again have purchased yet another bottle of elixir by Dr. GOP’s miracle snake oil. Let’s examine a few facts about this newly minted multimillionaire.

When Palin was elected the mayor of Wasilla, Alaska, it was a town with very little debt on its books. When Mayor Palin left to become governor, it was awash in $22 million in debt she had borrowed in a fit of fiscal irresponsibility.

Gov. Palin picked right up where she left off after becoming Alaska governor. She borrowed willy-nilly, leaving Alaska with far more debt than when she took the governorship. She spent thousands in state funds flying her family all over Alaska and the country, and apparently failed to pay taxes on some luxury cabins she and her husband own in Alaska’s back country.

So there you have it — a leader who preaches fiscal responsibility but borrows and spends money like a drunken sailor. This paragon of conservative virtue quit her elected office early so she could parlay her election campaign fame into a small fortune. She’s certainly committed to making herself rich.

In Alaska, every man, woman and child receives a check from the oil industry every single year. Now call me crazy, but that sounds like socialism and the redistribution of wealth. Now President Obama gives me, a man working two jobs, a significant tax cut and puts more money in my pocket in his first year in office.

So to review, Sarah Palin took the public trust after her election and left both of her employers, Wasilla and Alaska, awash in debt from money she borrowed while using state funds for her own purposes.

President Obama gives the middle class a tax cut and stands up to health insurance companies whose CEOs make millions denying customers coverage. And he’s the guy bankrupting America! Wake up and put that bottle down, Palinistas. You’re being sold yet another empty if attractive suit!

George Harlan
Old Orchard Beach

 

President and first lady don’t care for every child

 

In a recent article, I found a claim that states that first lady Michelle Obama “had a single over-arching message: Children can change the world. And as much as she can, she wants to make sure they have every opportunity to do so.”

She is quoted as saying, “(We) have seen time and again that potential can be found in some of the most unlikely places.”

May I suggest that one such place is the womb? The first lady and her husband are in the business of promoting abortions throughout the world, having retracted the Mexico City agreement and through encouraging, via the United Nations, “women’s reproductive rights” (read “abortion”).

Furthermore, they have included in the budget for the city of Washington, D.C., public funding of abortions.

In the recently passed health care bill, funding for abortions is included, and every knowledgeable person realizes that the executive order signed by her husband to withhold this funding is meaningless.

In this country alone, more than 50 million babies have been killed. How does that lead to the opportunity for those babies to change the world? How does that “confront wrong and outdated ideas and assumptions that only certain young people deserve to be educated”?

I am in complete agreement that every person should have an equal right to opportunity to life, education and the opportunity to change the world. My difficulty with her presentation is that she wants to start granting the opportunity only to those who have been born.

I think the opportunity should be granted to all persons, including those in the womb.

David T. Melley
Kennebunkport

Mainers should get behind Scarcelli for Blaine House

 

Given Maine’s reputation as a state that is “unfriendly to business,” we must carefully weigh the qualifications of the current gubernatorial candidates.

In my view, we need a business-savvy leader who knows the state, knows how to run a business, and knows what it takes to lure new business to Maine.

We need a person who can connect with people at all levels — from small-business owners to lobstermen; from school teachers to town officials; from college students destined to leave the state because of “limited job opportunities” to retirees drawn to Maine for its independent spirit and picturesque setting.

We need a person who believes not in “bigger government” or “smaller government” but in better government.

We need a person who possesses the enthusiasm to lift our sights and the character to merit our trust.

From the current slate of candidates from both parties, only one person stands out as the right person at the right time to lead Maine to a more prosperous future: Rosa Scarcelli, a Democrat.

Rosa could have passed up the gubernatorial race to continue to run her successful Maine-based affordable housing company, one of the largest woman-owned businesses in Maine. Instead, she chose to enter the fray because of her love of her native Maine and her vision for the state’s future.

Happily, Rosa’s campaign is on a roll.

She leads the pack in fund-raising from individuals and small businesses, and she was the first Democratic candidate to collect sufficient signatures to be put on the ballot for the Democratic primary.

Carefully consider the kind of leader Maine needs in the governor’s chair, given our current situation and future needs.

Check out her campaign website (www.rosaformaine.com). And join me in supporting this superb candidate to lead our great state.

David Treadwell
Brunswick

When assessing wind power, remember land-based is best

 

Your recent story on the rejection of an expensive Rhode Island offshore wind power contract is a reminder that offshore wind is no panacea.

While there is a large wind resource offshore, the cost of tapping those winds is significantly higher than doing so on land. The CEO of the world’s largest turbine manufacturer said this in 2008: “I think if you look at wind resources onshore in the United States, they are fantastic. And, therefore, I am really wondering why anybody wants to put them up offshore because it’s twice the price. So just as an outsider, I am just scratching my head saying, ‘Why?’ “

Recent data from the United Kingdom, with the largest amount of offshore wind, confirm this statement. Offshore wind farms generate an average of 19 percent more energy than land-based wind farms but cost 100 percent more.

That’s a tough nut to crack, and the Europeans pay a premium for offshore wind power. Going into deep water, as proposed here in Maine, could widen the gap even further.

Meanwhile, the U.S. National Renewable Energy Lab has increased its estimate of Maine’s land-based wind resource. The estimate is 10,000 to 30,000 MW depending on tower height.

If you assume that 5,000 MW of wind power would provide enough energy to heat Maine homes and run our transportation systems, we have two to six times more resource on land than we need to get all our energy from wind.

With this vast resource available, it would behoove Mainers to keep working on the primary barriers to more land-based wind: transmission bottlenecks and integrating wind with our communities and energy systems.

Harley Lee
President, Endless Energy Corp.
Yarmouth

 

Why downplay story about pro-immigration protest?

 

When 50 to 100 pro-gun advocates rallied to protect their “threatened” rights, this newspaper gave them front-page coverage.

When 500 rallied to protest the new anti-immigration law in Arizona, and its threat to the civil rights of Hispanics, The Press Herald placed news of the rally on page 3 of the “Local and State” section (May 4).

This is either sheer incompetence on the part of the paper or sheer racism. The Press Herald owes the city of Portland an explanation and an apology.

David Victor
Portland