It is nothing short of shameful how Gov. LePage is behaving, the language he uses to describe people in need of assistance, his behavior toward our elected legislative officials and the bullying antics he uses from the Blaine House. How much more abuse are the people of Maine going to take from this man?

I am particularly angry over his calling Maine a “nanny state,” referring to the adults without children who currently receive MaineCare. Gov. LePage is shaming and blaming individuals who have fallen into despair and have asked for help.

I am one of those individuals that asked for help. I got trapped in an emotional nightmare as I watched my husband wither away from cancer, and I was also caught with an insurance cap that ruined me financially.

My husband and I worked hard all of our lives contributing our fair share into the system. We did not ask for a nanny, we asked for support from a system I still continuously pay into.

If anything, Gov. LePage needs a nanny, someone who will teach him cultural competency, and to slap his potty mouth when he gets out of line.

Theresa D’Andrea-Blankenship


Gov. LePage has it all wrong — again. He proposes to throw defenseless people out of mandated and just programs to provide medical care because of budget problems.

Then he suggests using nonexistent state funds to support religious schools. The first — denying medical care — is not just cruel, but also will result in hospitals being overwhelmed by indigent individuals, and the costs will be passed along to the state in any event in the form of higher medical and insurance costs.

The latter is simply unconstitutional, as state and federal courts have determined consistently for decades. But LePage would have us pursue public funding of religious schools and then, no doubt, use state funds to litigate for months until the courts again reject his misguided plan.

What will come next out of the Blaine House? A proposal to sell pro-labor murals to balance the budget? A proclamation establishing a theocracy?

Paul Josephson


Columnist needed to tell other side of mortgage crisis

Bill Nemitz’s column about the contribution that Portland attorney Tom Cox made in exposing illegal or pre-emptive mortgage foreclosures was interesting (“Foreclosure exposer gets his reward,” Feb. 10).

Mr. Cox, who is a friend of our family, is an earnest, well-intentioned guy who deserves recognition. But columnist Nemitz failed to acknowledge the other side of that story.

It is this: The feds, through Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae, forced the banks to make bad loans (subprime) to people who couldn’t afford them in the first place.

Now President Obama is punishing these same banks and the bank’s stockholders. By doing it, he is cynically using the banks to buy him votes in the upcoming election.

V. Paul Reynolds


Master guide opposes bill that changes LURC role

I have been following the progress of L.D. 1798, a bill that would turn land use regulation of the unorganized territories over to county governments, and am wholeheartedly against it.

I am a lifelong resident of Maine. My family has been in Maine since the late 1700s. I am a master Maine guide. I treasure the resources known generally as the “North Maine Woods” and wish to protect it for generations to follow. I will not support any proposed legislation that would risk changing how we as citizens and temporary caretakers of this irreplaceable resource manage it.

I spent several years as a member of the planning board and zoning board of appeals in a town in southern Maine, and fully appreciate the background and commitment it takes to become knowledgeable of the many laws pertinent to the issues at hand.

I truly believe the Land Use Regulation Commission has done a commendable job in that regard, and I do not want to see it changed. L.D. 1798 transfers the responsibility from one central group to the counties. It would allow counties to drop out of LURC and county commissioners to appoint themselves as LURC commissioners, without the normal legislative approval process.

I believe in centralized regulation. Can you imagine if Plum Creek had been able to work directly with county commissioners rather than with the experienced staff of LURC? The state government has the monetary resources, skilled employees and institutional knowledge to much better regulate proposals.

I can only hope that this legislation will be amended to remove the county opt-out and county commissioner proposals.

Please join me and oppose L.D. 1798 as written.

Bill Stevens

Master Maine Guide, Fishing


Companies in Maine also make donations to charities

Thanks for publishing the article called “Charity is good for business” (Maine Sunday Telegram, Jan. 29) about the company Sevenly, which donates money to charity.

The California company is a nice example of how companies can be profit-minded and community-minded at the same time.

There are also such companies in Maine. Good Group Decisions, my own company in Brunswick, has a long-standing practice of giving 1 percent of annual gross revenue to charities that address environmental and social justice issues. Unlike Sevenly, for which charitable giving is a cornerstone of its marketing strategy, for us it just seems like the right thing to do.

Whether companies are persons or not, it’s OK for companies to have morality, a sense of appreciation for the social fabric in which they exist and a willingness to give even though it impacts financial profit.

At Good Group Decisions, we are very grateful for the community that supports us and for the earth that sustains us. It’s a no-brainer to take just 1 percent right off the top and willingly reinvest that in our community through the good work of charitable nonprofits. I encourage other Maine companies to do the same.

Craig Freshley


Predictions not speculation needed for Mack Point LPG

A DCP Midstream L.L.C. spokesperson said she “did not want to speculate what would happen” if an accidental explosion occurred in its proposed 22.7 million-gallon liquefied petroleum gas tank at Searsport. We should not speculate what would happen, but we should try to predict what could happen.

The Mack Point LPG tank could be ignited by accident or sabotage in at least 19 ways. When completely full, it would contain the equivalent of 549 kilotons of TNT energy, equal to 27 times the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima.

Today, 16 Mack Point fuel tanks contain an aggregate 50 million gallons of gasoline, kerosene and heating fuel, the energy equivalent of 97 atomic bombs. If an LPG tank is added, the aggregate energy would be equivalent to 124 atomic bombs.

Liquid natural gas explosions could create enormous forest fires. Since the atomic bomb destroyed everything in a 1-mile radius, what would be the destruction of an explosion equal to 124 atomic bombs?

Class B fires involving existing flammable Mack Point gasoline, kerosene, heating fuels and LPG could not be extinguished with water. Putting them out would require smothering retardants, such as foam.

A Mack Point disaster could destroy Searsport, Stockton Springs and many other Maine towns.

A 22.7 million-gallon Searsport LPG tank could increase fire suppression costs, increase insurance rates, lower property values, and increase midcoast Maine area living costs.

Because these LPG risks are far higher than any conceivable benefits, the Searsport LPG tank project should not be approved.

Randall Parr