Letters to the Editor 08/24/2022


Last updated 8/23/2022 at Noon

Water and development

To the Editor:

Water again. I wonder if the residents of greater Sisters are as confused as I am about the City’s water policies? In the hearing in 2021 to consider the Woodlands development, which will increase the population of Sisters by 30 percent and extract tens of thousands of gallons of water from our aquifer, the City Council gave little thought to water. They seem to have considered it to be an infinite resource, as if this were 1921 and only a handful of people lived in Sisters.

The City has now compounded the negative effects of this development by approving the Sunset Meadows development. Although smaller, it will still extract a significant amount of water from our aquifer. In the same issue of The Nugget in which the latter development was announced (July 13, 2022), there was a story about how the City was encouraging residents to conserve water. Having thrown caution to the wind by approving urban sprawl, this sounds like a case of being penny-wise and pound-foolish.

Yet, again in the same issue of The Nugget, the city manager says, “Nothing tells us we are running out of water.” What is the evidence for this, a few test wells? He goes on to say that “developers are required to pay for water mitigation.” Does this simply mean that they must pay to dig deeper wells, which is an admission that the aquifer is being diminished? Or do they make up for the loss of water by trucking it in?

Furthermore, we must recognize that Sisters’ aquifer cannot be considered in isolation. It extends far beyond the City’s urban boundary. It underlies the hopscotch development around the city and nearby farms and ranches. Do we even know approximately the total amount of water being extracted by all users and the effect on the aquifer even if we were not in a drought? Some wells around the city are having to be sunk deeper and deeper.

Finally, the latest issue of The Nugget (August 17) has the headline “City plans for water system upgrades,” which has the ring of panic. Apart from general maintenance, we are told of the imminent need to improve and expand the water system, which will cost millions of dollars. Why? The main reason is obvious: overdevelopment; but this is not mentioned. And who will pay for it? We can easily guess. It is not difficult to imagine future lawsuits against the City and developers over water issues. We will be in for a rough ride.

Gary Leiser

It can happen here

To the Editor:

Fascism: A political system based on a very powerful leader, state control of social and economic life, and extreme pride in country and race, with no expression of political disagreement allowed.

— Cambridge Dictionary

Let’s break this down:

A very powerful leader. This would be a leader who felt he ( or she, but not likely) could do or say whatever he wants. This sounds familiar. I think we just had a leader who thought he could do whatever he wanted, and I think we’ve got another potential one in the wings down in Florida, who seems even scarier.

State control of social and economic life. You know, like changing tried-and-true teaching methods, removing any historical reference to anything that might make the white race feel uncomfortable, taking away rights of women to control what happens to their bodies, as some examples.

Extreme pride in country and race. OK, I have extreme pride in my country but I don’t believe it’s “My country, right or wrong.” I believe in “My country, right the wrong.” I don’t believe in “ America, love it or leave it.” I believe in “America, love it and fix it.”

As far as race goes, I do have pride in my race — the human race. I think we should take great pride on how far we’ve come (well, some of us) from when we were factious apes in the trees. But this is not what is meant in a fascist system. In a fascist system you make it a crime, punishable by imprisonment or death to speak against your government and you deal with any race, religion, nonconforming people that you don’t like by deportation, imprisonment, or murder.

No expression of political disagreement allowed — I think a good example of this is how the Republicans have turned on many of their own people for expressing a different viewpoint then their dear leader. Liz Cheney, who I probably never would’ve agreed with politically, has shown herself to be a true American (“my country, right the wrong”) and, I have the feeling, will be back to get revenge in the near future.

I’m at an age where I’ve seen a fair amount of our crazy history.

I was old enough to see some of the McCarthy era hearings, the wacky 1960s, Vietnam, oil embargoes with gas lines, an entire embassy of hostages taken, 9/11, etc., etc., etc.

In all that time I was never fearful for our country until now.

There are people in this country who are trying to figure out how they can take it over and instill their way of thinking.

Even in the worst of the ’60s, with some of the most violent and radical leftist groups setting off bombs and robbing banks, I was never worried for the whole country.

I knew the much greater majority of the left was against such methods and knew those thugs for who they were.

This time it’s different.

The radical right has metastasized into the mainstream right and a large majority of them think that the only way to get their way is through violence. They’ve been suckered into cult thinking and big lies. They can’t even see the hypocrisy in their leaders. They think that they have the monopoly on patriotism. They think the left is to blame for everything wrong in this country. The left is not their enemy; they are their enemy.

“An honest but mistaken man, when once shown the truth, either ceases to be mistaken, or ceases to be honest.”

— Anonymous

Bruce Campbell

Election ‘theft’ must have been brilliant

To the Editor:

When people tell me the election was stolen, what I hear them saying is that the Democrats are brilliant. I mean astonishing brilliant! They successfully stole the election from a sitting U.S. president despite the fact he knew it was going to happen four years in advance, and relentlessly shouted it out to the entire world. It’s like he could see into the future — amazing!

So, apparently the Democrats successfully recruited legions of loyal operatives from federal, state, and local governments, along with a countless number of election volunteers in all 50 states, along with conspirators to fill out fraudulent mail-in ballots and forge all the signatures. This was no small feat. Especially impressive was the successful bipartisan recruitment efforts of key Republicans, including Mike Pence, Bill Barr, Liz Cheney, Adam Kinzinger, Brad Raffensperger, and Mitt Romney to name the obvious; without them the plan would have surely failed. They played their roles perfectly. Remember when Bill Barr declared no election fraud and then quit?


And let’s not forget all the recruited judges who tossed out some 60 lawsuits. And the unsung heroes, the coders or hackers that corrupted the Dominion voting machines. What’s truly staggering was that not one person leaked a single word or document to the press and no whistleblower has stepped forward to expose the conspiracy.

Everyone should be humbled by the unwavering commitment to the Democrats’ cause. People will be studying this for years to come.

So what I’m saying is that if you believe the election was stolen, then you must admit that the Democrats are the superior party; if not you must admit that Mr. Trump lost the election fair and square.

Personally, I believe the Republicans and Democrats are equally pathetic, and Joe Biden was the lucky winner of an election between two substandard candidates — politics as usual. Plenty of room for improvement.

Chris Cusimano


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