Letters to the Editor: February 18, 2022

Fair, not free

We should aspire to Fair Trade, not Free Trade. Fair Trade is when both partners gain, not just one.

For example, England has historically imported raw material from other nations in exchange for finished products. Look at the record of trade between England and Ireland, which goes back to the 1600s.

Our own country was founded on tariffs to protect our infant industries until they had time to catch up.

In the 1970s, I completed four years of Vietnam-era Navy service and started a steelworking apprenticeship. It was supposed to take four years, but ended up taking seven.

Why? Because we embraced free trade and let other countries dump steel at below-market prices. That resulted in short work weeks and long layoffs here.
Over ensuing years came the Permanent Normal Trade Relations, World Trade Organization, Trans-Pacific Partnership and North American Free Trade Agreement pacts, which I and other steelworkers marched, demonstrated and lobbied against.

They decimated our industry and union, the United Steel Workers of America. The union counted 1.4 million when I joined, but counts only 700,000 today.

More recently, West Rock closed a profitable paper mill in Newberg out of corporate greed. It found exporting raw logs and wood chips even more profitable.

Such closures have sent the cost of paper soaring. A few years ago, you could get a hundred count of paper plates for $2. I recently spotted that count — on sale — for $5.37.

What’s more, the Newberg mill had almost 300 workers. And as a rule, every industrial job generates four to six more.

It’s time we looked at what’s good for this country, not corporations or other countries. We must ensure we can produce the things we need to remain sovereign.
If there’s another world war, where are we going to get our tanks? From the countries we are going to war with?

Mike Sullivan


Inconvenient truths

The Recall Lindsay Berschauer Campaign wants us to believe she is responsible for canceling the Yamhelas Westsider Trail, and, as a result, Yamhill County taxpayers will be charged to repay Oregon Department of Transportation grants.

However, it was actually the Oregon Land Use Board of Appeals that stopped the project, ruling it had not satisfied state land use law. Yamhill County spent the ODOT funds without satisfying legal requirements, and this occurred before Berschauer became commissioner.

In January 2021, she joined Commissioner Mary Starrett in voting to accept rather than appeal the LUBA rulings and terminate the county’s Yamhelas Westsider Trail plans.

The need to return the funds is not because of actions Berschauer took. It is because of unauthorized expenditures by the prior commissioners and the county.
I will vote no recall in the March election.

Jim Talt


Too many handouts

The Legislature has been considering a bill, HB 4079, imposing a 3% sales tax on “certain luxury goods” to fund $750 monthly debit cards for the homeless under a pilot program. There was discussion about focusing on “micro-targeted people,” whatever that means.

Add the free needle program and free Narcan pens so addicts can ward off overdoses. And the feds are planning a $30 million program to provide with kits of facilitating materials — “alcohol swabs, lip balm, other materials to promote hygiene and reduce the transmission disease,” they say.

With all of this free stuff available, is it any wonder the homeless population is exploding? With the looming advent of additional free money, is it any wonder the illegal pot business is also exploding, leading to increased meth use and fentanyl overdosing?

Why is it so difficult for government organizations to connect the dots regarding the homeless and drug problems in our communities? And it is exacerbated by food handouts from various organizations that think they are somehow responsible for feeding all the less fortunate.

Scripture says we have an obligation to take care of the needy, but it also says in 2 Thessalonians 3:10-11, “For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that ‘if any would not work, neither should he eat.’ For we hear that there are some which walk among you disorderly, working not at all ... “
Perhaps it is time for the State and the Feds to come up with some sort of public service program where credits are earned to receive a benefit or meal. For example, the State’s highways and byways are cluttered with trash and it wouldn’t be a difficult program to administer to trade trash pickup for a benefit voucher.
As it says on the back of my birdseed bag, “Feed them and they will come.”

Steve Sommerfeld


Distinct personhood

For nearly 80% of our nation’s 246-year existence, regulation of abortion was left largely to the states. About 30 were outlawing it and 20 allowing it prior to the U.S. Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision of 1973.

The broader social acceptance of elective abortion since then has, in my opinion, been based on two fallacies — lies, if you will.

The first is that the baby is still part of the mother’s body, the basis of “my body, my choice” reasoning.

The truth is that the baby is a separate life from the moment of conception, with distinct DNA, and develops a separate detectable heartbeat early on. As the American Academy of Pediatrics stated in 2017, “A new life begins at fertilization or conception.”

The second is that an unborn baby is not yet a “person.”

Whenever a government removes the “personhood” of a certain group, be it slaves, Jews or unborn babies, it creates a victim class. Since 1973, unborn children have been demoted to the category of animals that can be legally killed at will, at least during the first trimester.

For years, sex ed classes have counseled young people that if they choose to engage in premarital sex, they can protect themselves from pregnancy. Some 63 million aborted pregnancies later, that not-so-safe sex has left youth with many life or death decisions.

For those facing such a decision today, I would suggest looking to the Bible for God’s wisdom. In Deuteronomy 30:19, they will find these words:

“Today I ask heaven and earth to be witnesses. I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing. Choose life that you and your children may live.”

Susan Paz


Yet she persists

With the full support of Commissioner Lindsay Berschauer, James Goings referred, in a recent post on his YC3 site, to constituents who disagree with the direction our county is headed as “cockroaches, who bring diversity to the community.” To those aligned with Berschauer, it seems diversity is a negative because it brings “chaos.”

Although not too keen on being referred to as a cockroach, I find one quality of cockroaches shared by those of us in Save Yamhill County trying to hold Berschauer accountable for her infinite lack of capabilities, lack of respect and lousy decorum – their persistence.

Independent with progressive leanings here. I’m still waiting for my George Soros money.

Lisa McCracken




Perhaps the County's direction is toward peace and respect for all and Mr. Goings will find that his own diverse identity will find love instead of hate toward the rest of us in this diverse community.

Tom Hammer

Jim Talt - well said, and with refreshing accuracy.

Lisa McCracken - The Soros money plus national teachers union money plus Hollywood money you speak of was a big part of the $150k that arrived in Yamhill County in the attempt to Recall School Board members in Newberg. Outspent 20:1 the defenders prevailed. Soros money is a part of the Lindsay Recall effort.


Tommy, you are becoming more and more delusional. Do you get your talking points from OAN or Newsmax? Show us where the Soros (classic dog whistle) money is? Twenty to one in Newberg?!? Come on man. At least be sane.


E.J. Farrar

Jim Talt’s letter (N-R 2/18/22) in defense of Lindsey Berschauer is not supported by the facts. Contrary to Mr Talt’s claim, LUBA did not stop the Yamhelas Westsider Trail project: their most recent finding was that the County didn’t yet sufficiently analyze the trail’s impacts on agricultural practices, which the County could then do. Lindsay Berschauer, and not LUBA, is responsible for its cancelation.

Berschauer’s election campaign hinged on her support of shutting down the Yamhelas Westsider Trail development, no matter what. Much of her campaign funding came from surrounding wealthy nimby landowners: she was just fulfilling her promise to them.

The abrupt cancelation of the Yamhelas Westsider Trail project and the resulting obligation Mr. Talt points out of Yamhill County taxpayers “to repay Oregon Department Of Transportation Grants” (already spent on project components,) is on Lindsey and her mentor Mary Starrett, not LUBA.

Anyone interested in the long factual history of this terminated project should read the Nicole Montesano article of Feb 4, 2021. “County Commissioners Officially End Pursuit Of Yamhelas Westsider Trail” on The News-Register Website.

Facts matter. Vote yes on the recall.

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