Letters to the editor: Feb. 28, 2020

Above the law?

It appears President Trump is trying to subvert the country’s justice system for his own purposes.

The president is trying to convince officials like the attorney general of the United States that he is above the law. I think these officials have enough of a moral compass to know the difference between right and wrong.

If officials say what they think the public wants to hear, then do the bidding of the president anyway, the laws of our country and democracy itself are in danger. The Justice Department must remain free from any political pressure and resolutely impartial.

Janet De With



The fix is in

The owner of the baseball team tells the head umpire to call only balls, never strikes, when his team is at bat.

Both men smile and wink. Then the umpire, Mr. Barr, goes to home plate to make the calls.

Bob McNamee




Pot program abuses

Recent sentencing of marijuana bootleggers for abducting and assaulting a storage facility manager in Portland dramatizes the failure of Oregon’s decriminalization of marijuana to eliminate violence and criminality.

It’s outrageous that federal agents endangered an innocent person by making it appear the drug unit had been burglarized. It’s even more so that prosecutors are apparently invoking civil forfeiture of three houses employed by the smugglers, without regard to the possibility the owners were merely innocent landlords.

These landlords may well have been victimized by smugglers. Now they are facing further victimization by federal authorities. 

Meanwhile, landlords are being routinely victimized by the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program.

Prior to passage last year of HB 3200, introduced by Rep. Ron Noble, OMMP policy was to issue address-specific grow site permits to rental tenants without landowner knowledge.

Aside from the risk of uninsurable water, chemical and fire damage, that puts landlords at risk of civil forfeiture and criminal prosecution if their tenants provoke the attention of federal agents. And Oregon’s residential tenancy laws make eviction nearly impossible.

The fact OMMP’s policies have been intentional is demonstrated by its implementation of HB 3200. One would expect OMMP to independently verify grow site addresses, consult county records to determine ownerships, then contact owners directly. Instead, it has enabled fraud by simply relying on marijuana growers to be honest about grow site ownership.

OMMP accepted applications without landowner consent right up to the new law’s effective date of midnight Dec. 31, then issued 2020 grow permits in clear violation. And it is now accepting consent forms printed out by growers and submitted with alleged landowner signoffs that have not been verified.

Lawmakers should empower landlords to protect themselves. They should allow eviction for unauthorized marijuana grows. Tenants should no longer be able to simply remove plants within 24 hours upon demand.

James Crawford



Putting the fun in fundraiser

As many cheesy people know, The Melt Down is underway. It’s a fundraiser for the Yamhill Community Action Partnership.

Participating restaurants offer unique and delicious versions of grilled cheese sandwiches. Shops that don’t sell food offer other cheese-related items in support, and a portion of all of these sales benefits YCAP.

This event is the best kind of public fundraiser I have seen in a long time. It is truly a communitywide effort.

Participants are located all over the county. And anecdotally, everyone has seen an uptick in business due to this event.

That is, in no small part, due to the amazing work of Diane Longaker and her team at YCAP. She has created an event that is positive, fun, delicious, easy to engage with and highly successful.

As a participating merchant at Third Street Books, I want to commend Diane’s organization and communication. As a member of the community, I want more grilled cheese!

Thanks, Diane, for bringing such a great event to Yamhill County.

Sylla McClellan



Help, please

Please protect our Social Security and Medicare. And above all, help protect our climate.

Linda Noordman-Velebir



Appealing to the community

Recently, Willamette Valley Medical Center’s interim CEO, Scott Avery, was featured in a full-page ad in this paper. In the ad, he attempted to address criticism and concerns from our community that have arisen since the hospital was acquired last year by Tennessee-based LifePoint Health. Those of us serving as nurses at the hospital live in the community and they share the community’s concern.

We are keenly aware of the daily challenges facing our community and the difficulties facing our hospital in efforts to address them. We feel strongly that we need concerted nursing leadership to guide us through this difficult time. In November, nurses at the hospital voted overwhelmingly to form a union affiliated with the Oregon Nurses Association. The action was based on concerns about patient care and safety, nurse-to-patient ratios and nurse retention.

By unionizing, we will be able to bargain with management on patient standards. Our hospital holds a special place in this community. As patients, you come because you need the services the hospital provides. As nurses, we come to provide those services, thus helping the community remain healthy and strong. We strive to provide the best possible care to our patients. Please help equip us with the tools we need to provide first-rate care and make the Willamette Valley Medical Center a place everyone in the community can depend on when they need help most. Please join us in supporting our contingent of WVMC nurses as we begin contract negotiations for standards that will truly address patient concerns. With your support, we can secure the tools we need and you can secure the care you deserve.

Jenie White & colleagues

ONA leadership at WVMC


Badly flawed analysis

Mr. Robert’s equation of Nazism, communism and socialism cannot be left standing as an actual history lesson (Rich Roberts, Readers Forum, Feb. 14).

First of all, Nazi Germany was not a socialist regime like the Soviet Union or China. The name “National Socialists” was a deliberate piece of fake-news propaganda, designed to placate the poor, who didn’t know any better.

The regime actually persecuted social democrats and communists right into concentration camps. And the economy was a capitalist oligarchy driven to make Germany great again. Does that sound familiar?

As to restrictions on gun ownership, the targets were members of the Jewish population and other opponents of the regime, including German socialists. Their gun rights came under attack in 1928 and 1933, and were eliminated entirely in 1938.

Handguns were available to leaders of the party and various affiliated organizations, but first limited and later banned for everyone else. Long guns remained available to everyone but Jews, Gypsies and “enemies of the regime.”

Even if these groups would’ve had guns in the first place, I find it hard to believe it would’ve altered the course of history. In general, gun owners tended to be as least passive supporters, if not outright supporters, of the regime.

When I see pictures of gun rallies here today, I cannot help but think the ideas being espoused are more akin to nationalistic propaganda than defense of democratic principles.

Wolfgang Sailler



Dogmatic drivel

I accidentally read a piece in your Viewpoints section from a guest writer by the name of Peter Enticknap (“Climate emergency sounds call for action,” Feb. 14). He actually makes Greta Thunberg, anointed Swedish goddess of the new religion of climate hysteria, appear somewhat rational.

I suppose I should no longer be surprised to read another mindless propaganda screed in a thankfully dying entity known as a newspaper, but the half-truths and outright lying displayed in this writer’s flame-throwing childlike tantrum caught me off guard.

I would gladly debate anything he proclaims as truth in an open forum, and easily reveal his dogmatic drivel for what it really is. But I would most likely be labeled a “climate denier” and forced into physically defending myself from the true-believer cult members.

As a proud member of the critical thinkers club, I suppose I could instead submit my own well-written and well-thought-out piece as rebuttal. That is, if the editorial authorities, gatekeepers of the climate gulag, would allow it.

But why should I spend the time and effort to compose a piece in hopes someone might manage to accidentally view it, as I did Enticknap’s. It seems futile.

Larry Elliott





Wolfgang Sailler's letter is a most important correction to Rich Roberts' letter of Feb. 13. It is, however, unfortunate that the Roberts letter is not available for online review, probably because it was on the second page of letters, none of which were posted online. On the other hand, *not* publishing such ahistorical drivel (to be found online forever) is a public service.


Mr Elliot thank for a wonderful example of 'dogmatic drivel'. As a fellow member of the critical thinkers club I applaud you. Phrases like "new religion of climate hysteria", "another mindless propaganda screed", "his dogmatic drivel", "the gatekeepers of the climate gulag" and fantastic in presenting your critical argument. And you did not have to actually offer one salient fact. Keep up the good work.

Don Dix

Larry Elliot offers (in a way) to debate what Mr. Enticknap's article proposes as climate truth (Enticknap: Climate emergency sounds call for action). Simply by using 'emergency' in the title, Mr. Enticknap plays on the fear of the unknown. That's been a tactic used by 'believers' since day 1 -- declare as fact what is and what is not when talking climate, and then make another baseless claim.

Later in the article, Enticknap states -- 'We’re now living in the warmest period in all human history.' That statement is equivalent to Al Gore claiming 'the science is settled'. Neither is true, and the only 'membership' needed to challenge such is an elementary thought process.

Gore has yet to debate anyone or admit he has a gone o-fer in his predictions of doom and gloom -- but his hypocrisy continues as he flies around the world telling everyone to cut back on emissions. Right!

It appears Enticknap didn't pay attention in history class, or he would know the world has been warmer several times during human existence.

Larry's letter was a challenge to debate, and if it were to occur, Enticknap wouldn't stand a chance of supporting most of what he claimed as truth. Many would pay to see that train wreck!

Chris Chenoweth

I have to comment on this discussion of what the 3rd Reich was. They were the "National Socialists" which was not a propaganda piece, it was the very definition of their beliefs. They were an "authoritarian socialistic" regime in policy, pure and simple. Had the 3rd Reich succeeded in redesigning the German economy we would have seen one modeled after Prussia. Fortunately their ambition for global conquest brought destruction prior to that end goal. The equating of any politicians on the right in US Politics by their policy or their behavior to Hitler and his ilk is divisive and repugnant. Republicans favor states rights and individualism, neither of which would be allowed by Hitler. He was a statist and collectivist which is the very definition of authoritarian socialism. Here is a link that helps to explain the development of the philosophy that helped shape the 3rd Reich. https://fee.org/articles/socialist-academics-contributed-to-the-rise-of-the-third-reich/


Janet De With...you’ve been watching too much CNN.

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