July 9, 2013

Letters to the editor: LePage dismisses legislators' decisions

(Continued from page 1)

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By vetoing broadly supported proposals on climate change and tar sands transport, Gov. LePage, above, shows he thinks “he alone knows best,” a reader says.

2012 File Photo/The Associated Press

Determine to say "I love you" to those you truly care about. Put those important plans into action before time runs out. Focus on the truly important issues of life.

Richard Schoff


Business leader points out DEP series' shortcomings

Good for Dana Connors! As president of the Maine State Chamber of Commerce, he knows what it means to strike a balance between sound environmental policy and a business climate that will attract businesses to Maine.

When I read the series by Colin Woodard questioning Commissioner Pattie Aho's stewardship of the Department of Environmental Protection, I had the sense that this was a very unbalanced view of her performance at the DEP. Dana Connors filled in the blanks ("Maine Voices: Chamber of Commerce: Aho is doing her job," June 23).

For example, why didn't Mr. Wood-ard acknowledge Commissioner Aho's role in creating the list of 49 chemicals that were not mentioned in the 2008 Kid-Safe Products Act. (As Mr. Connors points out, the list was created under the LePage administration.)

We need a balanced environmental policy -- and balanced reporting.

Mr. Woodard would have served your readers better had he called Dana Connors and other business leaders in the state before launching his series.

Fred Webber


National GMO labeling would protect consumers

Large multinational corporations like Monsanto have had the cards stacked in their favor for years, all at the expense of America's people and its domestic policy, ultimately compromising national security. Maine citizens need to demand support for mandatory genetically modified organism food labeling from their congressional delegation.

U.S. Supreme Court protection of Monsanto life-form patents is unconstitutional and violates antitrust law. Life patents for seeds such as Monsanto corn and soy, with Round-Up pesticide in the plant's DNA, are pervasive in our food supply, and their effects on the consuming public are only beginning to be understood.

The court decision also leaves Monsanto immune to health risk liability claims now and in future. So, just as the tobacco industry had ongoing, prior knowledge and research as to the deleterious nature of its product, Monsanto, too, may likely have studies suggesting risks to public health, which it chooses not to share.

Yet, unlike the tobacco industry, it avoids liability and a costly settlement for its risky market. That's not a free market, that's a coercive market, when the government chooses to "shore up" large corporations against its voting public's interest.

Scientifically, there can surely be nothing healthy about corn and soy, that is used for virtually everything we eat, which is laced with pesticides at the DNA level. What does it do to us once we ingest it, especially over time?

I don't think it's unreasonable for the American public to demand and know what food contains genetically modified organisms, knowing what to avoid, seeing as no one else will be held accountable. Only then will the market truly depict what it is willing to bear. I think that's scary to Monsanto, that you may have a choice.

Jo Ann Larino-Greves



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