Letters (January 7-14)

mail-letter-sqThe facts about the Pilgrim Pipeline

The Dec. 31 issue of the Saugerties Times carried the piece headed “Come On, Pilgrim” as if inviting the construction of the proposed Bakken-crude/gasoline-carrying pipelines into our neighborhood. The text that followed implied that those opposed held a radical view and that more reasonable moderates would agree that “it makes sense to invest in more up-to-date infrastructure.” Let’s set the record straight.

Pilgrim Pipeline’s “more up-to-date” invites comparison which leads one to think that the pipeline will replace rail and barge transport of crude oil. It will not. To repeat: the proposed Pilgrim Pipeline will not replace shipment of crude oil by rail. The trains will continue to roll through our towns just as they have been because the proposed pipeline route is different than that for rail. One need only look at Pilgrim’s application to see that. The proposed pipelines will simply multiply the volume of petroleum being shipped through the Hudson River Valley.

Secondly, “more up-to-date” implies added safety. However, pipelines do leak, and when they do, they leak vast quantities because it goes unnoticed until thousands or millions of gallons have been discharged. The Congressional Research Service reported that pipelines were the second worst method of oil transport in terms of amount spilled per ton-miles transported. The New York Times wrote of towns that have never recovered from pipeline leaks. As for employing newer, safer pipelines, one need only look to the Canadian Keystone Pipeline which had multiple ruptures in its first year of operation.


This proposed pipeline would cross the Hudson River twice and every creek feeding the Hudson from Albany to Ramapo. Not only that, it would threaten several critical aquifers that provide water for millions of New Yorkers. In this time of oil surplus and pressure to reduce CO2 emissions, it is unnecessary, irresponsible, and simply reckless to allow the Pilgrim Pipelines to be built.

William Barr


Editor’s note— The piece in question was part of a feature looking back on the big news stories of the last year. The quotes in the letter favorable to the pipeline company came from the portion of the article summing up the company’s position. Equal weight was given to the opposing position. It was just a short summary article. The headline “Come on Pilgrim” is a reference to an album by The Pixies, which we applied in this context as a John Wayne-esque statement to a potential challenger — as in come on, show us what you’re made of. To us, that’s a reference to the lengthy review process and significant opposition the company faces. Of course, we can see how the headline might have been interpreted differently.


Cemetery was fine until board member intervened

With respect to the ongoing issue with Blue Mountain Cemetery and “their” rules and regulations and their lawyer consultations: Mr. Puma’s letters, comments and views were more than respectful and considerate of the parties involved. Quite frankly the only party that the plot owners know to be involved is Teri Bach Tucker and she is perceived as a nuisance that people (the other board members) just bow to her so that they can silence her incessant babbling. There was nothing wrong with this cemetery and everything on the plots was “visible” and there were no shepherd poles tipped over etc. All this woman did was take it upon herself to desecrate the graves. None of these board meetings or office appointments are ever disclosed to the public. I would like to know who truly owns this cemetery, because they should too be involved in this issue. Big deal for the board members. It’s been my experience in business that when the big wigs go behind a closed door, when they come out, the idiocy runs rampant with their newfound moronic ideas. —Trish Hughes, via Saugertiesx.com


Character revealed

The way two “peoples” handle “murder” sometimes is a good judge of character.

In Israel, prosecutors filed indictments against two Jewish Israelis said to be responsible for an arson attack that killed a Palestinian toddler and his parents last year. The motivation for their hate crime was apparently to retaliate for the murder of an Israeli in June in a drive-by shooting by Palestinian attackers in the West Bank.

Contrast that with how the West Bank and Gaza Palestinians treat the murdering of innocent Israelis in the most recent wave of violent unprovoked attacks. These murderers are considered heroes and held up as role models.

In Israel, hate crimes are dealt with by the full weight of law. The Palestinians, on the other hand, celebrate their hate crimes as exemplary behavior.

Says something about the difference between Israelis and Palestinians.

Susan Puretz