The views and opinions expressed in our letters section are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Hudson Valley One. You can submit a letter to the editor here.
Central Hudson’s behavior outrageous
After living in northern New Jersey for 40 years, Virginia for a few, Chicago for several, back to New Jersey for another decade and finally to Saugerties for the last eight years, I’ve had a well-rounded exposure to infrastructure – i.e., CATV, gas and electric supply. Only in Saugerties did a home generator become a highly valued necessity. Never have I had so many explained (storm-related) and unexplained (clear, sunny day) power outages – and never have they lasted as long as they do here. On average, we have an outage a month that often lasts for several hours. Sometimes, we’re without power for 12 to 18 hours. It is a constant problem going beyond being inconvenient. That Central Hudson has been allowed to get away with doing little or no preventative tree-trimming, minimally proactive pole, wire and transformer improvements and to therefore have the shocking (pun intended) numbers of outages that it does is outrageous.
To then layer on massive, systemic billing problems that all are in the favor of the company; late charges; surcharges; rate increases and “delivery” charges that are designed to allow for significant cost increases without having to go through regulatory approval is nothing less than outrageous. The “delivery” charges in particular serve to ensure that regardless of consumption, Central Hudson gets paid a hefty fee by the customer and, in addition, make it less attractive to use another electric provider (because even if the consumer chooses a less expensive provider, they still have to pay Central Hudson’s “delivery” fee.
That the “delivery fee” (mine is over $100 a month on my average bill of $250 total) is supposed to go toward infrastructure maintenance when clearly it does not is the icing on the cake. Central Hudson needs to be investigated, audited for numbers and duration of outages and should be put in the penalty box financially until it provides a consistent, reliable and affordable level of service to its customers being held hostage. I suggest a large portion of its “delivery fee” is taken by the state regulatory body and to be used for energy credits, discount coupons on home generators and other related services. The “delivery fee” should also be capped for the next five years in order to prevent it from ballooning.
Central Hudson needs to be held as accountable as any other business – more so in fact, as it’s a monopoly that’s been able to get away with providing egregiously poor service while charging usurious rates to its hostage customers. Who in Albany is going to step up and jump into this nightmare and deliver punitive measures that force better service and lower rates? The deck has been stacked against the consumer long enough!
Vote for Pat Ryan August 23
On August 23 we have a special election to fill our Congressional representative’s seat that was recently vacated by Antonio Delgado, who stepped down to serve our state as lieutenant governor. I’m writing to urge everyone to vote in this election, and to join me in voting for Pat Ryan to be our voice in Congress as he has been our voice in Ulster County.
Much like me in my elected role in the Village of New Paltz, most of Pat’s term as Ulster County executive has been defined by crisis: COVID-19, the local housing crisis, the global climate crisis and the subsequent increasingly worse storms that have been ravaging our region and its old infrastructure. Throughout his tenure, Pat has been the embodiment of grace under pressure, holding steady in the face of all this crisis as a good leader should, while continuously shifting course to meet the needs (and hopes and dreams) of the people.
No other leader I know of in America has rolled out a pandemic response while simultaneously rolling out a Green New Deal and a housing action plan for the constituency he serves. Pat Ryan has done all that and then some.
It was an honor to be a part of the campaign that sent Delgado to Congress in 2018, flipping our district red to blue. It is with the same vigor that I urge everyone to get out and vote for Pat Ryan on August 23 so that we can hold that seat for the remaining few months of “the old NY-19.” I further urge all Democrats who will get a second ballot on that date to vote for Pat Ryan in the primary race for our future Congressional seat, which will be the new NY-18. For more information on the election and when/where/how to vote, please check out Ulstervotes.com.
They screamed “Hell no!”
This was a political earthquake – huge turnout! Not only did the anti-abortion side lose by double digits, but it was also done in ruby-red Kansas and with an unprecedented turnout for a primary in August. Well done and thank you, Kansas!
Women’s rights were on the ballot and was an issue of human autonomy and the freedom and privacy to one’s own health decisions. I have opined before that women must be able to make medical decisions with their doctors and loved ones. Our sisters in arms did not starve, get jailed, march, die or burn bras just to have the GOP set any of them back 100 years.
Republican schemers got decimated. The SCOTUS who handed it down to the states by way of cheating (Electoral College) and gerrymandering got pushed back. Kansans rebuked the white Christian nationalists (who so rarely model the behaviors of Jesus) and SCOTUS in its vote to retain abortion rights. The Republican Party had moved too far to the right. We can’t forget that Republicans blocked Supreme Court nominations by Obama, then jammed three unqualified liars onto the Supreme Court.
They weren’t reasonable justices; instead, they were selected from one group, the Federalist Society, which is an elite society of very wealthy people, many of whom are involved with questionably radical religious groups, the better to have absolute power and authority over their followers. You want conspiracy theories, then look no further than this group – follow the money, beware the true believers.
This issue is galvanizing. Most of this country is fed up with the minority fanatic conservatives. Maybe this “landslide” will wake the Republican lawmakers up and they’ll realize that pandering to the ultra-right-wing Christians might just well get them voted out. We’ll see if this is a bellwether or a one-off.
Of course, we should expect an escalation of anti-abortion propaganda. You would need to be blind to not see the hateful right wing’s ire spilling over. However, for a moment, let’s stay in now – it was wonderful to witness, wasn’t it?
This issue is galvanizing. Let’s be clear, it was not just abortion. Again, bravo for voting smart, Kansans, when rights and freedoms were on the ballot. I’m thinking, if every state put the right to an abortion up on a referendum vote, they would see that most Americans want that right.
Well, Judge Alito, you have misjudged the public mood. Turns out nobody likes it when you infringe on personal freedoms. No court should have the ability or audacity to overrule the will of most Americans on such an issue.
The GOP doesn’t want to be an American political party anymore – they want to be Hungarian fascists. I do hope that this landmark defeat of an anti-abortion amendment shows the Republications that women, whether they are Democrats or Republicans, are against the overturn of Roe v. Wade.
Hopefully, women and men from all over will come out in record numbers to vote blue in the midterm election to let the Republicans know they feel the same. We know that a loss of rights for one is a loss of rights for all.
Republicans live in abject terror of high voter turnout. This is just another example of that. When the people choose, they lose. We can’t rest; this isn’t over. Brace for a battle in the courts and the legislature. Mobilize voters!
We need to see this fight go beyond abortion rights. It is for all human and civil rights. The people have the power! Stop the insanity! Now, vote the Republicans out. If you don’t, they’ll come after these rights again, regardless of what the populace wants.
In the past two years, Ulster County has seen unprecedented income from two sources: Covid relief funds and sales taxes from all the people moving here from New York City.
Have Ulster County residents seen any of the money? Yes, if they work for the government. Ulster County Executive Pat Ryan has used this windfall to grow the government, hiring his friends to administer an ever-growing bureaucracy. Everyone else is suffering with high inflation and energy prices.
Across the river, Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro has cut taxes 10% and run his county with the aim of being functional and efficient, serving the people. He is a voice of reason and moderation when it comes to Covid restrictions, late-term abortions, green energy and all the divisive issues of our day.
If you like Karl Marx, and believe government should redistribute wealth, vote for Pat Ryan on Tuesday. If you like Thomas Jefferson, and believe governments are established to serve the public good, vote for Marc Molinaro on Tuesday.
Don’t miss out
Why does opera sound so good among the mountains? Because the arias resemble the roar of the wind, the screeching of crows, the chanting of crickets? Whatever the reason, the Phoenicia Festival of the Voice, held outdoors each year at the base of Tremper Mountain, thrills connoisseurs and newcomers alike.
Come next year!
What future of America must look like
I strongly prefer political candidates who understand what the future of America must look like (and could now, if we stopped entertaining nonsense). To that end, I have to lend my support first and foremost to combat veteran and current Ulster County executive Pat Ryan in the upcoming special election for Congressional District NY-19. Pat has a proven track record of protecting our environment, advocating for health services, combating the opioid crisis, standing up for working families et cetera. On August 23, we have got to send him to Congress as the only candidate in this race who won’t forget whom he serves on arrival in DC.
In the matter of the upcoming Democratic Primary (also on August 23), I absolutely support Josh Riley. Josh has a wide range of experience in government, which makes him the best pick for us on Day One. Not only did he get his start in the office of Maurice Hinchey, he also worked for notable figures such as senators Ted Kennedy and Al Franken. While doing so, Josh learned the true meaning and value of community in the midst of civil rights and labor advocacy. Let’s send him on to the general election and DC, where he’ll stand up for us all!
Tim Scott, Jr.
Open letter to president Joe Biden
Members of Veterans for Peace are concerned about the growing possibility of nuclear war. We have researched and written our own Nuclear Posture Review, with the goal of reducing the risk of nuclear war and ultimately eliminating all nuclear weapons. Because your own Nuclear Posture Review has not been released, we strongly encourage you to put it on hold while you review ours.
The war in Ukraine – with its relentless escalation toward a possible nuclear confrontation – is of great concern to the American public, including those in uniform and veterans who have experienced the chaos and trauma of war; we are eager to see your Nuclear Posture Review, Mr. President. We want to know what you and your advisers consider reasonable during this time of confrontation between the US and Russia. We need to know if you will be keeping nuclear weapons on a hair-trigger alert. Will you foreswear the first use of nuclear weapons?
We need to know if you will rejoin the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty, unilaterally abandoned by George W. Bush, and the Intermediate Nuclear Forces Treaty, unilaterally abandoned by Donald Trump. Will you contribute to an era of peaceful relations, or will you pursue antagonistic policies toward China and Russia? Will you continue investing billions of dollars on new nuclear weapons? Are you willing to risk a civilization-ending apocalypse by playing nuclear chicken with other nuclear-armed nations? Or will you lead us toward a planet that is free of nuclear weapons? We also urge you to acknowledge and sign the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.
The Veterans for Peace Nuclear Posture Review is available at tinyurl.com/VFP-NPR2. The product of many months of research and writing, our Nuclear Posture Review is a blueprint for a world of peace and cooperation, a world that uses its precious resources for global uplift rather than mutual annihilation. These are well-developed proposals from nuclear disarmament experts. It is our hope that you will take our approach to heart for the benefit of our country and of all humanity.
Is the president of the United States working to reduce the insane risk of nuclear war? Or is US nuclear policy being madly dictated by those who profit from war? We deserve an answer.
A dear friend of mine, Mike Hastie, who was an Army medic in Vietnam, wrote, “My government belongs in a straitjacket.” I hope you can prove him wrong.
Reject Pat Ryan
Fellow neighbors, there is a special election for Congress in our county in a week. I am writing to say we cannot afford Pay Ryan for Congress. Out of the gate, he will be a rubber stamp on all of Nancy Pelosi and Joe Biden’s massive spending bills that in turn increase costs for all of us. In the wake of the highest inflation in decades, the solution that the leaders in Washington, DC came up with was to spend more! We need members of Congress that will stand up to unaccountable spending.
One-party rule in Washington DC has led to expensive groceries and gas. We cannot continue to spiral further downward. August 23, reject high gas prices, reject Pat Ryan.
To vote or not to vote
When in doubt, Google Molinaro’s voting record, and then you vote. Early voting: August 13 to 21. Election Day: August 23.
Hint, to guess who? “Brevity is the soul of wit,” according to Shakespeare!
Are you doing anything?
Of course my Jewish brothers, sisters and cousins don’t want to hear this, but I send it to them anyway (they never respond). But we as decent human beings need to recognize that the “Jewish state” is an abomination just as much as the Third Reich was, and that we need to up the demand that US tax dollars stop going to support this apartheid state, as well as wars for profit everywhere else. The Pentagon budget is actually over a trillion dollars a year, while people are hungry and homeless right here in the US.
I once asked a dear friend, a former Blackhawk helicopter pilot in the IDF and one of the founders of Combatants for Peace, what was the root cause of this madness, and he said simply, there is just too much money involved in keeping the occupation going. Sickening, isn’t it? Money means more than life.
I ask all of us, including my Jewish relatives, are you doing anything to change that? Or are you just enjoying your comfortable life? Other human beings in Gaza, just like you, have no electricity, are dying in this heat because of what Israel, always with US support, is doing. Please don’t just shut your eyes and cover your ears. Do something! Call your congressperson, speak out, go to a protest, do something.
We need Pat Ryan in Congress
As the former president and CEO of the United Way of Ulster County, I had a chance to get to know Pat Ryan up close, working with him on several projects in his role of county executive of Ulster County. Forget the charm, the good looks and the winning smile; Pat is truly committed to community service and lifting up all the people in his jurisdiction. He is smart, compassionate and strategic in ways that have benefited his constituency.
His experiences as an Army intelligence officer during two tours in Iraq give credence to his strong belief that assault weapons have no place in our local communities. Pat will fight for healthcare for everyone, particularly women and those making minimum wage with no access to health insurance.
Pat is a true leader, very much in touch with the community he represents, and works tirelessly to address their needs. I encourage you to find out more about Pat at www.patryanforcongress.com and to get out and vote for him at the special election on Tuesday, August 23 at your regular polling place. We need Pat Ryan in Congress.
When an old man dies
“When an old man dies, it is as if a library has burned to the ground.”
– African proverb
This past week, Helise and I went to my dear friend Tom’s burial at the military cemetery in Saratoga. The end of a relationship that started in high school in the Sixties.
Tom, Dave and I enlisted in the Marines out of high school in 1967. We left a war well on its way when SUNY New Paltz students and teachers just began to protest on the college grounds.
We were discharged from the Marines in 1970 and began calling ourselves the Trilogy, still in the glow of having survived. Yet, whatever psychic symmetry the Trilogy created in the past 50 years, it is now wobbling. Three young men whom the military spun upon the axis of war, while the others in their generation protested at home. The Vietnam War has never stopped spinning for anyone.
War has been the bay window I look at life through, and yesterday I saw thousands of perfectly lined headstones, all echoing how life’s vitality was used up and extinguished in war.
Tom’s burial began with old men firing their weapons, a salute to the end of Tom’s life. I felt the hair on my neck stand because I am still a Marine, and I had the duty of being in a color guard for veterans’ burials before being discharged. Looking out at the thousands of gravestones, for me, each one meant the end was coming for my generation of men and women who fought in the unjust war of Vietnam.
As sweat and tears dripped into my eyes, I knew I wanted every household in America to hear and feel these rifle shots made in this isolated distant woodland cemetery only for the military. It reminded me of what VA hospitals are like, where vets’ wounds are seen only by staff and other vets.
I watched Tom’s wife sit on the just-dug ground near his grave. I reflected on how the Marines welded the compass setting in my head that I still travel. What I saw showed me Tom had broken that weld. I saw how loved he was, and that two young men came to say their last goodbye to Tom for being a life coach to them.
The birdsong in the trees, the tears on Tom’s children’s cheeks, the dirt stain on his wife’s dress, and the two old Marines still standing, both carrying the Trilogy in our hearts.
Glass/Steagall Act of 1933
I have continually brought to the reader’s attention the hatred the GOP had and have for this liberal, socialistic society we live in today. The GOP is to be blamed for this innovation of FDR’s New Deal in 1933. It was their “footloose and fancy-free” attitude of money, money and more money that led to this innovation of the federal government into the social fabric of the states. This freewheeling attitude, particularly the banking industry’s, led to the collapse of the economy, leading to the Great Depression of the 1930s.
The reason for this is that the banking industry had no separation between commercial and investment banking (retail). In other words, whatever money, savings, an individual placed in the bank, no matter the amount, could be taken and invested in commercial enterprises without the investor’s knowledge. The “money boys” saw this as additional funding for their high-risk adventures in the market. This was a contributing factor in the collapse of the economy as millions of dollars went out the window and led to millions being out of work.
Once Franklin Delano Roosevelt came into office, Republicans and Democrats joined ranks and supported FDR into placing into effect measures to aid the common man – Social Security was one of them – and to combat and prevent any future catastrophic, high-risk adventures with people’s money.
This led to the Banking Act of 1933, commonly referred to as the Glass/Steagall Act, named after two Democratic senators, Carter Glass and Henry Steagall. This Act led directly to the FICA (Federal Deposit Contribution Act of 1933). There were various factors included in this Act. But the main thrust of this Act was the separation of the commercial from the investment banking (retail). This meant that the amount of money investors placed into the bank could not be used by the “money boys” for their high-risk adventures on the market. The upshot of it is that it brought stability to the banking interest for millions of investors, as it insured deposits up to $250,000.
This lasted 66 years until 1999, when, of all people, Bill Clinton, a Democrat, signed off on it and opened the floodgates again. This was a cause of the 2008-2010 Great Recession, but not the main cause. There were other factors at play here. But the point I want to make is that there was a good Act here, a good regulation set forth in 1933 that addressed the Great Depression, which brought stability to the banking industry. This was the Glass/Steagall Act, and it worked well for 66 years.
But the “money boys” could not stand to see a source of money that was being denied them, brought up all kinds of reasons to eliminate this Act. My own personal opinion is the 1933 Act worked well and Clinton signing off on it in 1999 did not do the public any good, whatever the reasons put forth.
Speaking of money being denied them, when Medicare and Medicaid, the supplements to Social Security, was passed in 1965, it was a federal health insurance program because so many private insurers refused to cover them. But over the past decade, insurance companies and private investors have found a way to capture a growing share of federal Medicare dollars. In other words, the funds that Medicare allocates for a person’s medical expenses are now, and will be more so, subject to oversight by private investors who allocate corporate middlemen a defined portion of each senior’s medical expenses. What they don’t pay for each senior’s expenses, they keep for themselves! Wow, think about that, you seniors.
This is the REACH program (Realizing Equity, Access and Community Health). According to the NCPSSM (National Committee for the Preservation of Social Security and Medicare), seniors across the country are quietly being enrolled in this program.
It should be clear to all seniors that the biggest threat to their benefits today is the GOP, the Republicans. They would dearly love to go back to pre-Hoover, where it was all about money and more money, not this liberal, socialistic attitude of today. Some of you “oldies” might long for those bygone days of yesteryear. Fine. Keep in mind, though, those days of yesteryear is what brought FDR into office in the first place. You’re here now, you “old prunes;” you’re on health benefits and Social Security. If you want to keep them, join the AARP and the NCPSSM, contact your representatives and holler and above all, vote, vote, vote.
Hey, Hudson Valley, if your TV or radio news station or your weekly news magazine (or you actually buy a daily newspaper and hope to get “all the news”), here is a test: Do you know about the plot to assassinate top Trump advisors John Bolton and Mike Pompeo (West Point graduate, secretary of State for President Trump)? It came out Tuesday, August 9. If not, they flunk and you need to seek a more comprehensive, not more selective, news source.
Here is a second test: Why did the FBI send dozens of agents into Mar-a-Lago for nine hours this past week? They are not saying, but many of the TV news sources I watched wanted me to know that former President Trump wasn’t cooperating, so “What’s he hiding?” was what local Ulster resident CNN showman Chris Hayes, former Fox broadcaster Stephanie Ruhle on MSNBC and at minimum six other “newscasters” on those channels were all telling me “not to call it a raid!” This repetition of talking points suggests, to me, a coordinated message. Who is their quarterback? Susan Rice? Valerie Jarrett?
James Comey, as the head of the FBI, wrote a book worth reading. His successor McCabe wrote a book less worthwhile, but when two guys like these two get fired and their side of the story is as weak as theirs is, your time might be well-spent. It will help you understand the next guy in line to be fired, the current FBI head, Christopher Wray. (It was not a raid. It was an invasion).
Armed and ready to take on a platoon of maids with dusters and butlers with uh, nice manners, agents stormed into every room, every drawer, every crevice and cracked open the president’s safe. I hope they at least got the last of Trump’s Castro-era cigars. They get my disgust with their abuse of power that keeps Hunter Biden safe, and the selling of the White House by vice president Joe Biden hidden from us during his eight years under the too-soft thumb of President Obama and at that time White House chief of everything Valerie Jarrett, comfortably as all as invisible as secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s personal server in Chappaqua, scrubbed clean.
From that hangar in 2012 where she was fake-honoring the men who died in Benghazi, where Hillary lied with every word about why brave, abandoned station chief Chris Stevens died, standing in front of his coffin, the last 20 years have been coordinated. I cannot remember, did she fake-cry? It is called “a narrative.”
Start now with the 50 experts who told us that Hunter Biden’s laptop was Russian disinformation, a week before the Trump/Biden election. Probe their careers, their investments, their wealth. The disgraced New York Times has now told us it was actually all the truth. It is time to feast on these DC swamp professional liars. Their motives? Money and influence! And to save the nation from the Playboy president who made famous “You’re fired!” on his popular TV show. Leave a little room for dessert: Nancy Pelosi’s son. Far too much like his father! Con men to the core.
Israel’s Masafer Yaffa evictions not apartheid
In a letter to HV1 (Israel’s demolition of Palestinian homes, 08/03/2022), Tom Midgley parrots a statement by the notoriously anti-Semitic NGO Amnesty International that “More than 1,000 Palestinians in Masafer Yaffa are bracing themselves for the potential arrival of Israeli bulldozers that would demolish their homes.” It’s a simplistic reference to a complex legal situation so misleading the Jewish Federation of Ulster County is forced to provide clarity.
Masafer Yaffa is a parcel of land Palestinian sheepherders are squatting on illegally. It’s situated in an area the Israeli government designated as an Israeli Defense Force (IDF) “firing zone,” as far back as the 1980s. A “firing zone” is an area set aside for military operations; it would obviously be unsafe for civilians to dwell there. When the area around Masafer Yaffa was so designated, there were no permanent residents in the vicinity. There were “seasonal dwellings” – literally caves – where the farmers camped out periodically while their herds grazed.
What gives the lie to Mr. Midgley’s assertion this eviction is the result of Israel’s apartheid policies is the fact the dispute wended its way through the Israeli legal system, all the way to the Supreme Court. Litigating with the government all the way up to the nation’s highest judicial body is not what apartheid looks like to any rational observer. Transfer the venue of this conflict to the United States instead of Israel, and it’s easy to see why it’s so absurd: By declaring “eminent domain,” even a local government here can seize owner-occupied private property for nothing more important than building a shopping mall, and it has (see Kelo v. City of New London). Even though the illegal housing has got to go, the government will continue to allow grazing and cultivation at specified times, in a nod to limiting the commercial impact of the Supreme Court’s decision on the sheepherders.
Mr. Midgley further suggests, “Israel…isolates Palestinian communities to keep them segregated from Jewish-only communities through discriminatory planning and housing policies.” This statement is patently false.
Here’s an inconvenient fact: Israeli settlements take up an area less than 40 square miles; that’s only 1.7 percent of Judea and Samaria (the so-called West Bank). But the rallying cry at pro-Palestinian demonstrations is, “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free.” It’s a blatant call for a Palestinian state extending from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean, land that includes the entire State of Israel. It’s understood as a call for total dismantling of the Jewish state. So, who is it advocating segregationist policies?
Mr. Midgley goes on to accuse Israel of colonialist policies meant to eradicate the Palestinian people. Exactly why Israel has offered the Palestinians an independent state three times, and they have always refused, he never explains. Nor does he understand why his arguments over who maintains sovereignty in Judea and Samaria rely on a spurious interpretation of international law.
He concludes by asking readers to demand Congress hold Israel accountable for its alleged persecution of the Palestinian people. We would more logically ask Congress to demand the Iran-backed Hamas terrorist faction and the Palestinian Authority (PA) eschew violence and adhere to the letter and spirit of the Oslo Accords – a rudimentary peace agreement Israel forged with Yasir Arafat in good faith, which the PA never implemented.
Congress should demand the Palestinians cease diverting billions of dollars in foreign aid to build terror tunnels into Israel, using US subsidies to pay stipends to the families of terrorists who’ve murdered Jews, fomenting violent protests and terror attacks on non-civilians and firing rockets into residential neighborhoods (9,500 of them last week alone).
I write frequent “Letters to the Editor” to a regional newspaper (Hudson Valley One) located in the Hudson Valley of New York State. The reason for this letter is to seek your advice regarding people who respond to my opinions by mischaracterizing my thoughts and misrepresenting my arguments. One such misrepresenter (let’s call him “Peter V. Fiorentino”) this week wrote yet another response in which he once again misrepresented what I wrote. Abby, do you have any advice for a guy who is more than a little frustrated over “Peter’s” misrepresenting ways?
“George, gobsmacked in Gardiner”
Dear Gobsmacked George,
Believe it or not, I’m aware of the situation described in your letter. I’ve been vacationing in the Hudson Valley for the summer and have been purchasing the paper you cited. Assuming you are the “George” who writes amusing parody songs and thoughtful letters, being an avid reader of the paper’s “Feedback” section, I can offer advice from the perspective of someone who has firsthand knowledge of the situation you described.
First of all, for the sake of full disclosure, I must state that our political views are at odds. This being said, I’m opposed to the misrepresentation of adversarial views during a debate and I agree with your assessment of “Peter” in your letter above. Although I am pro-choice, I was alarmed by Peter’s recent attempt to present your reference to the “very real and present threat” abortion presents to the existence of a female in the womb in the following way: [George’s] assertion that the coincidental abortion of a female fetus…absurdly implies that the fetus’ female gender must have been specifically targeted.
One reason for my alarm was Peter’s casual claim that any abortion could be “coincidental.” Another was his sloppy wording, which wrongly gave the impression that you used the word “coincidence” or implied the meaning of it in your comments. Whether targeted or not, an abortion is never coincidental: An abortion is always meant to kill a developing human being. Moreover, by referring only to “female” life developing in the womb, it was clear you were keeping to the subject of the letter to which you were responding, which was “women’s” rights.
I’m looking at your letter at this moment and this is what you actually wrote: “I wonder if Ms. Miccio appreciates the irony of her article’s silence on the fact that abortion involves not only the life of a woman, but the life of another human being developing within her womb. And if that life in the womb is female, abortion is not only a very real and present threat to female freedom but female existence.” From this quote, it was obvious that you were not implying “coincidence” or females being “targeted” during abortions, as Peter suggested. Since it is commonly supposed that at least half of the victims of abortion are female, as a reader, I rightly assumed that “this reality” and not targeting was your point, as clearly noted by you having stated, “And if that life in the womb is female.” Shame on “Peter” for “absurdly” suggesting such a distorted implication!
As you wrote in a previous, appropriate criticism of Peter: “Context” must never be ignored when presenting another’s views. Although I’m no Bible-thumper – since you sought advice – the following two proverbs I learned in Sunday school offer some thoughts for your consideration: “Do not answer [an unwise man] according to his folly, or you yourself will be like him…Answer [an unwise man] according to his folly, lest he become wise in his own eyes.” (Proverbs 26:4-5)
The choice is yours, George. And, despite being gobsmacked, I encourage you to choose wisely.
In a recent letter in the Feedback section of HV1, the author pointed out that there were “dismal electronics conditions in the [TV] studio” and that he “would like to see our decisionmakers act and fulfill promises, promises and more promises, instead of concentrating on construction and real estate market trends.”
Prior to decisions relating to Town issues, in most cases, and before they can be voted on, the issues have to be put on the Town Board meeting agenda, an agenda that is normally created by Supervisor McKenna. This leads me to believe that a letter to him rather than HV1 might get the previous promises fulfilled. If that does not work, he can try getting it on the agenda the following way, as stated in the bylaws: “If two or more Town Board members request an item be placed on the agenda, it will be included.”
It would be nice to bring back the days of, may they rest in peace, David Boyle, Sam Mercer and Randi Ripley.
Gum on my shoe
Glampin’ ain’t campin’. Is the grey ponytail an elderly extension of the man-bun?
Don’t vote down the party line; vote for the best candidate. Want a Cuomo encore? Vote Hochul. New York blew the mayor; why not the governor too?
Great growth industry of the future: removing tattoos.
China and India are building coal plants faster than ants are building ant holes; what does that tell us? Give the 87,000 new IRS guys Teslas. They’ll get around faster and cheaper? Good for the economy.
We replaced Trump with Biden. Who’s next: Beavis, Butthead or Kamala?
FBI raid on Mar-a-Lago: agents with guns?
My parrot threw Hudson Valley One out of his cage.
Commentary on life
Silly string, succotash, sustainability, silky spleen.
Only if you have lost interest in it all should you “zoom” yourself.
If you must stoke violent rhetoric, do it in your fireplace.
Did you know that MARALOGO spelled backwards is O-GOL-A-RAM?
Don’t confuse your Mr. Clean Eraser for your “Crepe Erase.” Just OM! Get into your center, try yoga/yogurt.
Too bad Olive Oyl never got “Impeeza” — that new drug for POP-EYES.
TA-ta! I am off to retrieve unsealed, sticky search warrants, looking for lower fixed-rate mortgages for monkeys living below the poverty line.
Myrna S. Hilton
Response to Marty’s “Outrageous” (Part 2)
Marty Klein says that, due to the end of Roe v. Wade, “women no longer have choice.” That conclusion is quite a bit premature since all states have not come to final decisions and parameters regarding abortion. They are waiting for all court challenges, stays and orders to be resolved. Currently, it appears that many states either have a restriction on abortion after a certain number of weeks into a pregnancy or not until the unborn child meets the definition of “fetal viability,” which is around the 23rd-24th week into a pregnancy. Regardless of what the bottom line ends up being in each state, there will continue to be a total disrespect and disregard for the sanctity of life of an innocent, unborn child.
Let’s look at the “choice” that women have always had and will always continue to have, except in the microscopic number of instances of rape … the “choice” to become pregnant, in the first place. How come the abortionists never focus on this very important “choice?” That “choice” will never be taken away from a woman by any court or law, unless we were to become as morally bankrupt as China, who puts limits on how many children a family is allowed to have. The “choice” to become pregnant should be planned, and based upon behavior involving morality and the common sense use of protection. The reason that this thinking was never given a second thought was because of lazy and arrogant thoughtlessness in a moment of passion with a thought process leading to their default philosophy of “I’ve always got Roe v. Wade … that’s my “choice” of birth control.”
On Marty’s gun control thoughts, the Supreme Court is hardly protecting and supporting the gun lobby and gun businesses. The Court’s duty is to simply protect the 2nd Amendment rights of all law-abiding gun owners. A DOJ report says that 90% of guns used in crimes are obtained illegally. Therefore, any further gun laws, other than those banning automatic military type assault weapons, will have next to no effect on crime but, instead, will handicap law-abiding citizens in their right to own a gun for the protection of themselves, their families and property.
Pollution and climate? Until there are effective, thoroughly tested and proven green replacements for fossil fuels, we will still need them for many other purposes than just to fuel our vehicles and homes. You regulate after tested and proven alternatives to fossil fuels are available and actually ready to be introduced. Biden’s immediate crippling of our energy independence, with absolutely no alternative energy sources anywhere near ready to replace fossil fuels, is the predominant reason our economy began to crumble to the point of the catastrophe with which we are now faced. And, Biden takes us all for idiots, including his own Democratic voters, when he invents his cutesy phrase of “Putin’s price hike” as part of his never-ending blame game. And, his secretary of Transportation, little Mayor Pete, a Rhodes scholar pretending to be a “roads” scholar, tells all of us that we have the solution at hand right now … just go out and buy an EV (electric vehicle), even though studies show that only 15% of Americans can even afford an EV. These guys are lucky if their brains are the size of peas, or even bee-bees!
The Supreme Court has lost its soul, per Marty. But, the abortionists don’t blink an eye when it comes to the avid and rabid support of slaughtering innocent, defenseless unborn babies, even up to the moment of birth. I’d say Marty is clearly labeling the wrong group as not having souls. How come far too many people don’t see anything wrong with Marty’s upside down picture? Didn’t Mary and the rest of us all start out exactly like these defenseless, unborn babies? We all need to thank our mothers for giving us the beautiful gift of life.
John N. Butz
Reliable electric power
I would like to respond to John Crowley’s thoughtful letter (HV1, 8/3/22) about burying electric power lines to avoid power outages and reduce consumer costs for electric power. I would like to point out that it is highly unlikely that Central Hudson would do this. Part of the reason for this is Mr. Crowley’s mistake when he writes, “This (burying the lines) would also help them protect their precious dividend …” Central Hudson has a far more effective way of protecting and increasing their dividends — The Public Service Commission. The PSC, while supposedly protecting the public, does, in my view, protect power company investors’ income no matter what folly the power company commits. You see we live in a capitalist economy which, in early and mid stages, is brilliant in encouraging the development of technology and services and low prices due to completion. But in its later, mature stage, it works to eliminate competition and serve only the interests of the shareholders. Monopoly is the end state of capitalism and electric power companies are perfect examples of end state capitalism.
There is a better way of providing electric power, which logically is provided by a central organization, and that is through a publically owned company whose function is to provide reliable electric power at its lowest cost to its owners, the public. This kind of organization is not without its problems, but it is more amenable to the public than as a corporation whose ultimate responsibility is to shareholders. Thus, I think Mr. Crowley and all who might be interested in improving production and distribution of electricity should give serious consideration to changing our electric utilities into publically owned companies. For instance, the largest publically owned power company in the US, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, is doing precisely what Mr. Crowley advocates, the burying of all their electric lines.
Pat Ryan is the clear choice!
The special election on August 23 pits Pat Ryan against Marc Molinaro for Antonio Delgado’s seat in the U. S. Congress. We strongly urge you to get out and vote for Pat Ryan, and get all your family, friends and neighbors to do so. This special election is a general election, meaning everyone — Democrat, Republican, Independent — can make your voice heard. It is no exaggeration to say that everything we hold near and dear in our democracy is under direct threat by Republicans, and make no mistake: Marc Molinaro would be party to that threat if elected to Congress. The contrast with Pat Ryan could not be more stark.
For example, inside of one week earlier this summer, two consequential decisions were rendered by the Supreme Court. Pat spoke out forcefully against the assault on women’s rights, and upon its decision to shoot down New York State’s concealed-carry law that had been on the books for over 100 years. On both instances, in the immediate aftermath, Molinaro was absolutely silent.
Pat embodies and practices authentic leadership, patriotism, integrity, compassion, decency, unflagging commitment to the Constitution and to public service in the truest sense. He has taken principled stands and leads from his convictions in the fight to protect a woman’s right to make decisions about her body, to protect reproductive health for everyone, to expand not restrict voting rights, to advocate for gun safety, and to aggressively combat climate change with smart, next-generation sustainable technology.
It is essential we have someone representing us in Congress who will stand up for the Constitution and our common values, and will not be silence or swayed by those who put power over patriotism, party over country. So it’s on us: get out and vote in this special election, either in person on August 23 or early voting by Sunday, August 21. Just as important, since turnout is key, contact all your friends, family and neighbors.
Deborah Meyer DeWan & Michael DeWan
Against allowing two ADU’s on all single-family properties without review
I wrote previously of the proposed changes that would alter the zoning code for housing throughout Woodstock. I personally am against allowing two accessory dwelling units (ADU’s) on all single-family properties without review. As I stated earlier, I believe that some zoning codes protect residents and the quality of life in a community. We need proposed changes to properties to be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Otherwise, we run the risk of Woodstock becoming another cookie-cutter, urbanized community.
I bring this matter to your attention again because fairly soon, the Town Board of Woodstock will vote on the proposed changes. Other Woodstock committees such as the Planning Board and the Zoning Board of Appeals are also reviewing the proposals. No matter what your opinion is of the proposed changes to our community, which do include incentives for developers to purchase our housing, I urge you to be informed and write letters to the Woodstock Town Board and the other committees involved. You can obtain their information on the Town of Woodstock website or call our town offices at 845-679-2113, ext. 17 for the Supervisor and Town Board, ext. 16 for the Planning Board, and ext. 18 for the Zoning Board of Appeals. These committees have been listening to your feedback and will read your letters.
Again, in my opinion, allowing the amount of building that is being proposed in Woodstock is harmful to the environment and does not guarantee affordable housing or an excellent quality of life that many of us have enjoyed in Woodstock for decades.