There was another letter in The Press Herald recently calling the federal government “the enemy.” I hear this almost daily. I am concerned about the negativity that this represents.

Negativity is a toxic energy. Keep it out of your family.

The people who hate the federal government aren’t investigative reporters. So they haven’t formed their own opinions from scratch, they are simply accepting the opinion of others. (Not a good idea, by the way.) Who are these “others”?

I guess they are people on television and radio shows. And don’t forget, these are “shows.” They take news items and make a show out of them. Some of these shows can be dangerously negative.

They spew negativity almost 24/7. I can’t stand to listen to their anger, their unrelenting pounding against the federal government.

The federal government cleaned up Maine’s rivers, regulated nursing homes, ended discrimination against blacks: things that states refused to do because the offenders had too much control over state legislatures.


Who is this “evil” federal government? The federal government is Sen. Olympia Snowe. I sat on a dais with her one time down on the waterfront blessing the fishing fleet. I found her delightful.

The federal government is Sen. Susan Collins, a lovely person. The federal government is our Reps. Chellie Pingree and Michael Michaud. I don’t find them “enemy-like.”

Of course there is also presently President Obama. Some people don’t like his policies. You can vote him out of office next time if you wish.

But please, for the emotional health of your family, stop thinking negatively about the federal government. It’s going to make you ill.

Go outdoors, away from the TV set. Go down to the park and feed the squirrels.

Uplift your thoughts and give your family a break.


Rev. Joseph R. McKenna, Portland

If MPBN believed in itself, it wouldn’t need taxpayers 

The recent controversy over eliminating state funding of MPBN leaves me disappointed and puzzled, but not surprised.

I’m disappointed in the leadership’s negative reaction to Gov. LePage’s proposal, and I’m puzzled by the network’s apparent lack of confidence in its product.

I’d like to offer a private-sector perspective on this issue.

This may initially seem like a setback for MPBN, but I don’t see it that way. Rather, this is an opportunity for the network to find new sources of revenue without spending taxpayer dollars.


It’s also a great opportunity for everyone who listens to/watches the network to show their loyalty by increasing their donations.

If a business truly believes in its product, it should have no problem competing without the use of taxpayer money. The free market, not millions of taxpayer dollars, should determine MPBN’s fate. That’s how it’s done in the private sector.

John Henninges, Brunswick 

Car makers boost mileage in many product lines 

The national average price for a gallon of regular gas is about $3.85 right now. That’s a budget buster for many, if not most, Maine families that warrants a reminder about techniques and resources that can alleviate some of the pain at the pump.

While auto manufacturers have achieved considerable improvements to fuel economy, auto dealers acknowledge that not everyone is in the market for a new vehicle.


If you can’t take advantage of new models that improve your current gas mileage, try changing some habits.

Regardless of the age or make of your vehicle, slow down. The EPA estimates a 10 percent to 15 percent improvement in fuel economy by sticking to 55 mph on the highway.

Also, be kind to your vehicle. Maintain a proper tune-up schedule with tire alignment included. Wheels that are fighting each other waste fuel.

And remember, today’s engines don’t need a warm up. The longer your vehicle idles, the more fuel it wastes.

Higher gas prices also require planning ahead. Consolidate errands for fewer trips, along quicker routes, with as little strain on your vehicle (and your wallet) as possible.

For consumers who are considering a new vehicle, fuel economy has greatly improved across the auto industry.


In addition to its hybrid vehicles, Ford, for instance, is now releasing vehicles — including F-150s and Explorers — with EcoBoost technology, which reduces fuel consumption while delivering the same horsepower. Ford also now offers four vehicles that are EPA rated at 40 mph or higher.

Sticking to these tips or taking advantage of improvements in new vehicles can help make the summer driving season a little bit better.

Wallace Camp Jr., President and General Manager, Rowe Ford Sales and Auburn Motor Sales, Westbrook

GOP in Congress promotes rule by big corporations 

The GOP just doesn’t get it. They may be employed by business interests, they may rely on those interests to fund their campaigns and get them cushy job they are unqualified for after leaving government.

But those businesses don’t vote, and the GOP is managing to offend nearly all of us. There are only two actions which will reduce the deficit created by Bush and his chicken hawks.


Tax the rich at 1960 rates and end these wars and put people back to work repairing the infrastructure.

In other words, we need a new New Deal and an end to the return of the robber barons.

One of the characteristics of Milton Friedman’s fantasy (supply-side economics) was a set of economic models which were based on assumptions never witnessed in human behavior, but they did promise to put the “important” people in charge and give them ownership of production. Another word which describes that actuality is fascism.

Yup, the Republicans are fascist, they have empaneled a fascist Supreme Court, they espouse fascist ideas and ideals and they accept unconstitutional behavior, calling it patriotism.

A pox on gentle dialog.

John Wood, Hollis

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