Letters to the Editor - Oct.27, 2012

Letters from Joe E. Mahan, Susan Meredith, Rich Chandler, James Galbreath, Diana Giannettino, Terry Davis, Edward J. Gormley, Kris Bledsoe, Tim Duerfeldt, Wendy Buchheit, Don Bowie, Glenn Wiegman, Mark Davis

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Don Dix

By reading Kris Bledsoe's submission, it's apparent she believes members of the county commission should form an alliance with another commissioner. Really Kris? It has only been two years since you ran for commissioner, and at every occasion you denounced the alliance between Kathy George and Leslie Lewis. And now all that has changed? I don't think so!

If Denise Bacon is elected, there is no doubt she will vote along with Mary Stern. Mary has been at the forefront of Denise's campaign, you know, political favors and all.

The bottom line is both the liberals and the conservatives want control of the 'non-partisan board' (we know who is which). The cons have had that control, and the libs want it. Simple as that.

So if Allen Springer is elected, most believe he will not be beholden to either commissioner, thus, no alliance or favors owed when making county policy. But according to Kris, that will not be the case with Denise, team player, and all.

So Yamhill County has a choice -- vote for independence thinking or partisan block mentality.

Kathleen Blair

Don, I disagree with Denise on many things but I'm still voting for her simply because she has virtues which are very rare to find; I'm a sucker for an endangered species. It's true that Denise & Mary enjoy a good relationship, and, that's one reason I'm not enthusiastic about that alliance. Mary hasn't done our county an favors lately, &, you're right, both parties want 5 commissioners only because it will help obtain and hold onto power. I'm kind of afraid Denise is willing to go the five commissioner route. On the other hand, many people in our Democratic Party have acknowledged that Denise is *not* a liberal, and truly, she isn't. She's really a Moderate all the way around. (cont)

Kathleen Blair

(cont) I don't agree with Kris that Denise is fiscally conservative but I do think Denise is fiscally Moderate. It isn't fiscally conservative to go along with the Dundee Bypass Boondoggle in the depths of this Great Depression, especially when there are cheaper solutions. But Denise believes that it's better to go along to get along and that it would be a waste of her energy to fight something she thinks she cannot win. It seems to work for her and there are many much worse faults to have. The only things I've ever really found fault with Denise is that she poor-mouths and she seems to have embraced the Developer Mafia. She tends to poor-mouth in order to identify with people who are struggling financially. She's solidly middle class, comes from solidly upper-middle class origins in Upstate New York, & when she is elected both she and her husband will likely bring home mid-six figures between them, putting them solidly in the upper-middle class again. She herself told me that her family are sitting on a mountain of natural gas in Upstate New York which they can't tap due to Federal Law. This alone ought to make her a favorite of pro-corporate, pro-Developer Mafia, pro-Prosperity Gospel, anti-government regulation, neo-conservatives - n'est pas? :)

Kathleen Blair

CORRECTION: *low* six figures, *not* mid six.


My parents were happy to learn that they are upper-middle class! All those years of working their butts off just to pay the electric bill must have finally paid off. Owning property with natural gas is only worth money if you can extract it without destroying a watershed, as they live right across the road from the Delaware River, they aren't planning on seeing any checks from that "windfall" in their lifetime.

Truth is I have lived in all different economic circumstances (except rich, I have never been rich)-- this has helped me to be a compassionate human being. People-- for a multitude of reasons some of which they have no personal control over-- are faced with struggles. My husband and I work hard but we are well aware that there are others that are not as lucky as we are. We have been poor, working class, and lower middle class -- if elected we will be upper middle class for the first time ever in either of our lives.

And finally-- I have never taken into consideration my relationships with other elected officials before casting my vote. It just doesn't work that way for me-- I serve with a great group of people some of which I consider friends and that just never comes into play. I read my own materials, listen to testimony, and vote my own conscience every single time.

Kathleen Blair

Denise, owning a business & having private property rights in valuable natural resources, & lots of land *IS* upper middle class, whether or not there's worry about paying an electric bill. George Washington & Thomas Jefferson had lots of land and little cash, but by your definition they were poor. But they weren't.

You work hard, you educate yourself about anything that you see as being important to learn about, and you work your guts out to be plugged into what is happening. Your are much smarter than the average bear, you are good at leveraging information, and you are strongly moderate. This makes you rich - not poor.

But poor-mouthing is a flaw.

When is being solidly middle class, poor? Struggling to pay the electric bill happens to everyone regardless of income status, believe it or not. It isn't how much money you have - it's how you handle it.

Poor is state of mind - poverty is an unhappy state of being. I think you have a strong sense of nobless oblige precisely because you come from & currently live in fortunate circumstances. It is not poor to work hard or worry about paying the electric bill when many people don't have electricity at all.


Kathleen Blair

(cont) I never said that you take into consideration your relationships with other elected officials before you vote. What I said is that you go along to get along and that that is the truth & not bad.

While I disagree with your conscience sometimes, at least you have one. I think you and I see representative government differently. I see it in the traditional sense that one doesn't represent one's own conscience, one represents the majority who elect you and at the same time refuse to let them abuse the minority who did not elect you. I think your vision is more modern, in the sense of serving as a way to act out conscience in the world and getting people on your side to be able to do it. At this you are very good and successful.

It was smart to enter into a mentor-mentee relationship with Mary Stern, because anyone wanting to work in a job ought to find someone who can help you learn it.

But I agree with Don's discomfort with your relationship with Mary Stern, but not because of any perceived partisanship. Her participation with both Wiretap Lewis and MiniMe George in degrading the equal standing & salaries of two fellow elected officials using the Compensation Committee which the Commissioners control, is vile & undermines The Peoples' democratic control of government. So is participating in try to shove through a pay raise for the Commissioners in the middle of a Great Depression with little public notice. Currently the Commissioners make $70K a year plus benefits. That's solidly middle class. Why wasn't that good enough for them, all three of whom are already very very well off, when so many others aren't? And Mary fully participated in both of those acts.

Don Dix


My point had nothing to do with perceived status in the class structure. It had to do with how most 'political leopards' change their spots to fit the present story.

On paper, it appears Mary Stern wants Denise as a fellow commissioner instead of Allen. There is no mistaking Mary's sentiments. So the question remains, why?

I can only assume the answer, but that assumption is based on how the liberals have railed against the George - Lewis tandem (Kris being one of several), and then turn around and beg voters to put them (liberals) in the same situation.

In my opinion, when winds blow in an offensive odor, it makes no difference whether it originates from the right or the left -- it stinks just the same.

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