Letters to the Editor: Feb. 17, 2017

Bag the ban

I have been following the McMinnville proposed ban on plastic bags.

Yes, the environmental issues concern me. I use plastic bags several times after bringing them home. All items we bring home should be reused as many times as possible or passed on to others who can reuse them.

Sometimes we get so stuck on one environmental issue that we forget about personal choices. How many who want the plastic bags banned use disposable diapers? Like the bags, there are cloth alternatives.

Disposable diapers are filling the landfills and also, like plastic bags, do not decompose. Please don’t tell us who like to shop in McMinnville how to bag our purchases. I won’t tell you to buy only cloth diaperes and reuse them as much as possible to save on landfill space.

Carolyn Sauers



False comparison

I’m disturbed by Jeb Bladine’s Feb. 10 Whatchamacolumn and am unable to find the connection it appears to be implying — or creating — between Billy Dean Hays and the other “meth-related criminal named Hays” mentioned.

Why is this coincidence of names so “interesting” as to be noted in the publisher’s weekly column? The headline proclaims the column to be about outsiders coming to our community bringing trouble with them.

The “visitor” named is described in another article as “armed and dangerous” and having previous convictions involving weapons, assault and drug manufacturing. He was arrested on multiple felony warrants and is a suspect in multiple bank robberies.

The “other” Hays has deep roots in Yamhill County and grew up right here in a well-respected family. Hers is a tragic tale of depression and a lack of appropriate mental health care leading to substance abuse and a nearly destroyed life.

I say “nearly” because, while in prison, she is working hard and making tremendous progress in putting herself and her life back together. Meanwhile, with the support of family, her children are all doing exceptionally well in school, in work and growing into solid community members.

Being denigrated in the town paper by an implied connection with someone like the “visitor” is just the sort of thing that could undermine the burgeoning self-esteem and vital progress of everyone involved.

Not only is there no connection between these two people, but even the date cited regarding her sentencing is not accurate. These are times when we all need journalistic integrity and excellence. Extrapolating a coincidence of names into an implied connection to fill column inches seems at best the result of sloppy research and, at worst, irresponsible journalism with the potential to cause harm.

I’ll assume the best, and hope to see Jeb and the News-Register back on track soon.

Gerry Hunter



His critics get trumped

The Obama Democrats have been losing the legislative branch since 2009. That saved the United States from an Obama appointee after the untimely death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia in 2016.

Soon we’ll have Trump’s first Supreme Court appointee, Neil Gorsuch, and continue a Republican-Nominated 5-to-4 majority on the court. After Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy retires, we’ll have at least two young Trump appointees, with decades and decades and decades to serve on the high court.

I hope Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg will do us a favor and retire, too, giving the good guys a 7-to-2 majority.

By all indications, the Obama Democrats will keep losing and continue in their cognitive dissonance, induced post-election delusional state for a long time. And it is going to be a long time, with hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of weeks left in the Donald J. Trump presidency.

My guess is it will be 2019, only after the 2018 elections, with Republican super-majorities, before the Democrats return to sanity. We’ll know when there aren’t enough Obama Democrats to re-elect loonies like Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi.

Closer to home, while President Trump gets things done ahead of schedule and below budget and plays simultaneous games of multidimensional chess, our silly Democratic Gov. Kate Brown and the Ninth Circus Court of Appeals are still trying to get “kinged.”
I don’t know about getting kinged, but I bet they get crowned.

Dan Katz



Liberal hypocrites

I’m really tired of hearing about President Trump being evil. I wonder where all the marches and protests were when President Clinton was having sexual acts in the White House with an intern and during all of his affairs prior to becoming president. I don’t remember any.

So I must deduce from this that it is OK to have sex with whomever you like as long as you don’t talk bad about them. What a bunch of liberal hypocrites.

Mike Freeborn




Mr.Freeborn. No one cares any more. A man can talk about sexual assault and grabbing p***y in his own voice. He was elected. No problem. The concerns of some folks might be about other issues. Just maybe.


Dan. You may be correct that gerrymandering will keep the good guys in power in the House. However there are a lot of voters who did not vote in play. More of those than the Rs who voted and the Ds who voted. Your assumption those folks who did not vote will continue set the next one out or who will side with the R's legislation is very optimistic. POTUS is there on a minority of less than 80,000 votes. Your assessment of the R philosophy dominating the Supreme Court is accurate.


As Mr. Katz' and Mr. Freeborn's letters show, it seems to be getting harder to maintain a sense of optimism after President Trump's glorious victory. The protests have largely died down, as it becomes obvious that Trump is doing just fine dismantling his presidency from within.

After a few weeks of frenetic actionism "getting stuff done", there's little left that can be addressed with spectacular ill-conceived executive orders. This happens if you become president with no plan, no program, no real agenda, and really no clue. Yes, the Supreme Court will shift, and while I don't begrudge conservatives their victory dance, its political impact is moderate at most.

In terms of actual national policy, where the President should drive an agenda, Trump is reduced to sitting around waiting for the adults in Congress to cobble some things together for him to sign that might actually work. He'll get bored.

So he holds a press conference and ..... goes back to whining about the press and Hillary. Message to Donald: She is gone. Forever. And that's good. But so are the votes you got just because people hated her, which got you elected. Your actual supporters still lap this up, I'm sure, but to everyone else, you sound ridiculous.

Unless he pulls a "Sarah Palin" and just quits because he's bored, we'll muddle through the next four years, I'm sure. Fortunately, the country isn't the hell-hole Trump made it out to be, and Obama left both the economy and homeland security in pretty good shape, so even Trump can't do that much damage. But still expecting great things after what's been happening since the inauguration requires very rose-colored glasses.

Don Dix

I can agree with one of Trump's EOs -- the freeze on federal hiring (both within and outside gov.) -- or spending $98K on an unplumbed outhouse in Alaska -- or the $1M heated pavement bus stop in Arlington, Va.

Obama's final financial numbers -- $20 trillion in debt, $500 billion deficit -- not my idea of 'pretty good shape'.


"Don Dix
Obama's final financial numbers -- $20 trillion in debt, $500 billion deficit -- not my idea of 'pretty good shape'"

I was talking about the economy, not government finances, two things that have little to do with each other. But if you want to talk budget and debt, every economic idea I've heard from Trump so far involves more government spending, from building walls to investing in infrastructure to, for that matter, bombing more craters into the desert around ISIS. On the other hand, tax cuts to keep congressional Republicans happy. This is the same Bush-era recipe that drove us from the Clinton surplus into the deep deficit.

If fiscal conservatism is your thing, I don't think you're headed for happy times with Trump.

Don Dix

Rumpelstilzchen wrote --
"I was talking about the economy, not government finances, two things that have little to do with each other."

I would submit that if the economy is booming, the government would naturally collect more (taxes and fees) than if it weren't. In my opinion, that marries the economy and federal finances. But the feds will always outspend the take.

During Obama's terms, income inequality has worsened. The top 1% has gained (income) while the average household income has not kept pace. Food stamp recipients up 45%, home ownership is down 3.2% (20 year low), corporate profits have nearly tripled yet real weekly earnings are up only 1.7%.

So, to say the economy is in good shape, one must be looking only at numbers (government produced) and not at the whole picture of economic health, which includes the other 99%.

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