The Boston Tea Party, a model for the current conservative movement, was based on demands for “no taxation without representation.”

As the backing of the original Tea Party by wealthy merchants has been obscured by history, and the funding of its current namesake by wealthy ideologues is ignored by partisans, the irony of current conservative efforts to enforce taxation without representation is also overlooked.

For what else can you call the conservative effort to stop American taxpayers from voting for their elected representatives by enforcing unnecessary, inconvenient and punitive requirements for voting?

Shouldn’t every adult taxpayer automatically be registered to vote? State taxation agencies verify the identities of taxpayers, and in this automated era they could certainly coordinate the authentication of residency and taxpayer status with local authorities.

In states where voter registration has been automatically coordinated with motor vehicle licensing, voting records have been made more accurate, while significantly reducing election costs.

Not only is it ironic that Republicans don’t honor the principle of “no taxation without representation,” it is disappointing that Democrats don’t support efforts to modernize the voter registration system in this way.

Why aren’t Democrats demanding that voters be registered automatically and securely by government agencies that have the ability to do so?

Roger Carpentter


Craftsman story illustrates what America is all about

Regarding the story “Carving his niche” by Meredith Goad (May 20):

Now this is what America is all about: the opportunity to succeed. Such an interesting story on Ashraf Eldeknawey.

This is why America has been so successful, providing opportunity for hard work and innovation. Kudos to this craftsman!

I so enjoyed his story.

Nancy Vose


‘Keep America Beautiful’ could use a timely reboot

I would like to second the thought put forth by the writer of the May 20 letter “Drivers trashing roadsides all over our state and region.”

The writer hit the nail right on the head. Is “Keep America Beautiful” a thought from the past? I hope not. But there seems to be very little respect for individual property and for the country.

My wife and I live on a dirt road in Hollis that is a shortcut between Route 35 and Route 117. My wife (at 78 years young) diligently goes up and down the road sometimes twice per week picking up trash. We have even made signs that are posted at both ends of the road.

Non-caring individuals continually throw out plastic grocery bags, empty coffee cups and even beer cans. On one occasion they dumped their litter at the foot of the newly posted “No littering” signs.

If I have the opportunity to find out who these culprits are, I will drop bags full of litter on their front lawn in hopes that they will realize the need to “Keep America Beautiful.”

Vic Kirmes


Agencies dishonor state with wind power permits

The state does not listen to citizens when they voice their discontent with the overall scheme and scam of wind turbine farms in their communities. (The Department of Environmental Protection issues permits despite contention, and the Land Use Regulation Commission has only done the right thing so far once, in the Bowers case.)

It is time they listen to all voices, including those from the unorganized territories, that are expressing repeatedly their opposition to ruining their environment with these industrial inefficient machines.

Nor does the state honor its historic sites or its preserved sites. This will not help the economy of Maine or the citizens and should stop before it is too late for Maine, which will be sad and impossible to reverse.

Note the article below — it is worldwide that people are being mistreated in the name of greed, not truly saving the environment as claimed:

Donna Sewall Davidge

Island Falls

East-west road will benefit a few, at Maine’s expense

Why should Maine build a road for Canada? The road has no purpose other than to meet the needs of Canada’s energy interests. Why don’t Canadians build, and pay for, a road across Canada?

It will make very few people in Maine rich, and that will definitely not included you or me. We, the unfortunate majority, will simply suffer all the negatives of this unnecessary superhighway in their peaceful backyards.

Why would anyone in Maine want to build a huge road with a 2,000-foot corridor that takes properties by eminent domain, demolishes rural life, and literally divides the state?

Not a good idea except from the perspective of the few rich entities that will get richer from this project, which “we the people” are just finding out about.

So much for “life as it should be,” huh? At least in northern Maine.

Stephen and Meredith Perkins


Hancock Lumber reaches out to world in other ways

I was particularly interested in the article in the Press Herald on May 22 titled “Their exports grow like a tree.”

This is a great example of some of the really creative ways in which Maine businesses and businessmen can do a great service to assisting other areas of the world where wood and wood products are not as plentiful as what we have been blessed with in Maine.

What it did not talk about was an additional service that Hancock Lumber did for children with autism in Pakistan.

In some work that has been going on with United Cerebral Palsy of Northern Maine and Woodfords Family Services, to support the Autism Society of Pakistan, Hancock Lumber packed up a large shipment of surplus preschool classroom furniture and equipment and sent it over to Islamabad/Rawalpindi for their Autism Resource Center.

Needless to say, the families and teachers in their program were thrilled, as this type of equipment would not be easily available to them.

This is the kind of thoughtfulness and extra consideration that businessmen such as Kevin Hancock can combine with the company’s other activities to make a positive impression on people in other countries such as Pakistan. Thank you, Mr. Hancock.

Dick Farnsworth


Family story behind death of infant is critical to tell

Making something positive come forth from a tragedy — that’s what Bill Nemitz did in his column (“Adoptive father finds no sense, only pain,” May 13) and what Irv Faunce has done in his noble statement responding to the death of his grandson Ethan Collins-Faunce.

The seeds of Ethan’s death were planted long before Irv and wife Jan Collins adopted Ethan’s father, Gordon Collins-Faunce, at age 9. The demons of early childhood mistreatment are so difficult to overcome, but Irv and his wife were heroes in their efforts. God bless them.

And may I also congratulate Bill Nemitz for his humanity in recognizing this compelling story many years ago, writing about it then, following up on it now, thus helping us all to see the many layers that go into nourishing a life, and also, sadly, those that relate to the end of a life.

Finally, thanks to The Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram for somehow hanging on to Nemitz, a talented journalist, so these stories with important history are not forgotten.

Sara Archbald