Kudos for Bill Nemitz calling out Sen. Susan Collins (“Sen. Collins hardly a profile in courage during shutdown stalemate,” Oct. 2). He spells it out exactly right, in my opinion.

She has a penchant for simultaneously being against something (i.e., Gov. LePage’s behavior) while sponsoring his re-election fundraiser. Being against “big government” while being first to issue a news release (with a smiling picture) announcing every penny of new government spending in Maine.

The current “coup” that has occurred in Washington is costing all citizens real money. Most economists predict that the market will tank (retirees, take note); interest rates will go up; the overall economy will shrink (real jobs will be lost), and our recovery (such as it is) will go into reverse.

All of this is the result of a small minority of a minority party holding a majority hostage with this gun pointed at our heads.

I have been waiting, along with many others, for Sen. Collins to make a principled stand. Her choice has been not to. My choice is to support and vote for any non-Republican candidate in the next election.

Ken MacLean

Scarborough

This is in response to the Oct. 2 Bill Nemitz column, “Sen. Collins hardly a profile in courage during shutdown stalemate.”

We did, in fact, notice what she did, how she voted, how she turned her back on her Maine constituency and cowered to Democratic leaders.

Pamela Smith

North Yarmouth

For a person to be successful in negotiations between two sides of a problem, one does not already form opinions against one side in the negotiations.

Sen. Angus S. King Jr. has already proved that he can’t negotiate this impasse in Congress. He showed his hate against the so-called tea party when he was on talk radio, using the words “hostage” and “murder” more than once to describe the actions of the tea party.

He also refuses to talk to any who do not support his views when people go to his office.

He should drop his idea of being a great negotiator. He’s just another politician in Congress.

Gregory Morrow

Windham 

House is just carrying out people’s will on Obamacare

People forget that the president does not represent the people – he was elected by the Electoral College.

The Senate represents the states.

The House represents the people, and if a majority of the people don’t want Obamacare, so be it.

Bob Tanner

Falmouth 

Affordable Care Act attacks based on disdain for Obama

Republicans from Sen. Ted Cruz to Gov. LePage continue to show why they represent the party of “No.”

They are against the Affordable Care Act. Why? I am not sure. Primarily, it seems to me, because President Obama is getting credit for it.

Never mind that it is a law passed by Congress and upheld by the Supreme Court. Never mind that a similar plan in Massachusetts signed by Gov. Mitt Romney is wildly successful at expanding health care coverage to all citizens.

Nope, LePage and Cruz are against it. In fact, LePage wasted Maine taxpayer money on a lawsuit to avoid dealing with the law. Instead of rolling up his sleeves to help cover more Mainers, he delayed and dithered.

Let us review the positives:

Immunizations are paid for. Preventative visits are paid for. Children can stay on their parents’ plan until age 26. New York and California premiums are much lower than expected.

Insurance companies must use 85 percent of premiums on patients. If they keep more than 15 percent, we get a rebate from the insurance companies! Insurance companies no longer can deny coverage because of pre-existing conditions. Insurance companies can no longer stop coverage after a catastrophic illness.

None of this matters to Republicans. No, it seems if the government is involved in helping fix our broken system, they are against it.

My advice? Stop whining and get to work covering more Americans. It is quite likely that someone’s life depends on it. If it needs tweaking later, then tweak it.

Tom McInerney

Cape Elizabeth

Alarmed snorkeler arrives at unfounded conclusion

Regarding the Sept. 30 letter by Benson Dana of Cape Elizabeth (“Snorkeler’s Fort Gorges visit reveals sad ecological decline”):

Science students learn that to understand an observation of the natural environment, it must be viewed in the context of ongoing scientific, cultural and sociological conditions.

Had Mr. Dana paid attention for the last 21 years, he would know that there exists more than 20 years of Environmental Protection Agency-certified data on the waters of Fort Gorges, as well as the entirety of Casco Bay. He can call 799-8574 to access data that has been recognized worldwide as a viable and important contribution to the body of knowledge on which ecologists and oceanographers, marine biologists, fisheries researchers and scientists of many other disciplines depend.

Regarding Mr. Dana’s reference to “dirty water”: Cloudiness in ocean water is most often an indicator of healthful biological activity.

Mr. Dana may have visited the fort within 48 hours of a moderate-to-heavy rain event. Under these conditions, Fort Gorges and the harbor surrounding it are engulfed in a plume of fresh water from the Presumpscot River, which carries with it silt from the riverbed, especially since the removal of dams.

Research will show appropriate turbidity (cloudiness) levels under normal conditions. Visit anywhere in Casco Bay to observe this condition.

Regarding urchins, it is well known that urchins were overharvested in the ’90s. Visit anywhere on the coast of Maine to observe this depletion.

The presumption that the “seaweed” (presumably he is referring to common rockweed, Ascophyllum nodosum) is soon to be harvested “to complete devastation” demonstrates an an absolute ignorance of the current and developing regulations for rockweed harvest, the historical harvest of this publicly held resource and the current harvest activities in Casco Bay.

Andrew Bertocci

Yarmouth