Capital Region

Letters to the Editor Tuesday, May 18

PHOTOGRAPHER:

GOP dumps on one to get another

Goodbye “Wicked Witch of the West” (Liz Cheney from Wyoming)! Hello, “Good Witch of the North” (Elise Stefanik from New York)! Sorry, Lizzy for dropping that big bucket of water on you. Haha!
William Myers
Johnstown

Don’t take Arizona audit seriously

The so-called “audit” of the 2020 presidential election being held in Arizona is a farce. Here is why.
I am an engineer and sometimes work as an expert witness in legal cases. Some of those legal cases involve forensic examination of debris from fires that may have been caused by electric lighting systems.
During these forensic examinations, no evidence is inspected without all the parties present in the room, and no evidence is modified in any way, such as by cleaning it, unless all parties agree to the process.
All steps in the process are documented using photography and other means. The experts conducting the examination have no financial interest in the outcome.
Now, compare this to the Arizona “audit.” Only one side is present, a partisan organization with no ballot audit experience that has been retained by Republicans in the state senate and funded through private donations from political supporters.
Some ballots are being modified in the process of the “audit,” making it impossible to determine their original condition.
The Arizona “audit” is theater and should not be taken seriously.
Victor Roberts
Burnt Hills

Do some research to find out the truth

In response to John A. Gaetani’s May 13 letter (“Trump foes have been the real liars”)  blah blah blah.
You are a pundit of a false messiah claiming he is still the true president of these United States.
Without proof of any kind, you are backing a want-to-be dictator. When his own appointees to the Supreme Court denied his claims repeatedly, it should have given you at least a slight pause to rethink your position on that lie.
If you had been there at the Capitol with those insurrectionists, I would hope that you and the other warriors would be charged with treason and not with the charges set as is.
Though Joe Biden was not the best choice for me, I, like Mike Pence, believe in the Constitution of these United States. VP Pence did as he was required to do. “Go down to the Capitol building and stop that vote and I will join you there” said ex-President Trump.
That incited the actions of his foolish followers. To follow blindly is folly as Jan. 6 proves so sadly. What I saw on live TV is proof.
News channels blah blah blah. Ignorance has replaced common sense for most Americans.
The truth is in research. The shepherd has led his flock to the slaughter figuratively.
Jeffrey Pelky
Broadalbin

Cuomo, Fauci make mockery of science

What happened to “Follow the science” the unyielding mantra chanted like an incantation for the past year.
I guess Andrew Cuomo being the top-notch disease expert that he is and Anthony Fauci the all-over-the-place expert, both must know more “science” than the CDC. Both of these people have been abject failures in the handling of this.
What happened to “Follow the science?” We have gone from at best doubtful “science” about the worth of cloth face diapers now to a Cult of the Mask, where science apparently doesn’t matter anymore, and maybe it never did initially. We will all continue to bow down before the Emperor Cuomo and his Court Jester Anthony Fauci. Wear those masks you peasants!
Kim Lake
Saratoga Springs

Are you happy you elected Biden now?

Gasoline is up $1 a gallon. President Trump made us energy independent. The Middle East is on fire. President Trump brought five Muslim countries into a peace agreement with Israel. The southern border is being overrun by undocumented immigrants. Under President Trump, our border was secure and a system was set up for refugees seeking asylum. Prices for food are skyrocketing. Inflation was running half of what it is now. And we just had a main oil pipeline hacked.
The United States was respected around the world. Boy, am I glad you Democrats elected Joe Biden.
Dave Edwards
Halfmoon

 

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Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion

21 Comments

William Marincic

I agree, where is follow the science? Even in the beginning it was said that children have very little chance of catching or spreading COVID-19 yet they have to continue to wear masks not only in school but outdoor sporting events. I just watched a Schenectady High school track meet where all of the kids running had to wear masks, how ridiculous and not only ridiculous but unhealthy for those children. The CDC is saying that kids still need to wear masks in school for the rest of the school year, why? What next, are they going to tell us that kids can’t go back to school in September without the vaccine? This parent will not be sending their child to school if they need the vaccine, I will not give my child an experimental vaccine. And I can guarantee you that most parents won’t, but maybe that’s what the school boards and teachers unions want, parents not to vaccinate their kids so they have another reason not to go back to the classroom.

jclark124

I work in a school and find your comments offensive–as if we don’t want our kids back in school! Our district has been hybrid and in school all year, so parents had a choice. The CDC believed that kids were carriers of the virus, but unlikely to be affected by it. This was all new, so scientists and experts have been doing their best, and erred on the side of caution (my rights are being taken away, poor babies)! 45 was the one that KNEW how serious this was but lied, denied, blamed, muddied messaging, attacked democrats, and spread the virus! Why did he and Melania secretly get vaccinated? 45 bungled this from the beginning. His only success was ordering Warp Speed…but had no plan for distribution. It’s no wonder there is confusion.

jclark124 My grandson’s school was open all year. If it doesn’t apply let it fly. California, Chicago, and dozens of other schools are saying no to opening even in September. AFT told the CDC they didn’t want to go back without certain restrictions and guess what, the CDC releases a statement almost verbatim to the AFTs request. So please with the phony offense. Why are schools requiring kids to wear masks for outdoor events, the science says it’s very rare to transmit outside, and when you add the fact that it’s rare for kids to get it and transmit it makes zero sense. Get back to me in September because Universities are telling students no vaccine no college.

William Marincic

Zachary, that’s funny, I have been saying for a year that my Grandson has been in school all year because he goes to Colonie which is more conservative. jclark doesn’t have a clue I wonder what she does since she just says works at a school. I love his teachers and his school and I wish every school in the country was as good as it is but unfortunately teachers’ unions like most unions tend to ruin things. People use to believe they were in it for the kids but after all of the leaked emails and zoom meetings, we see that the unions and many of the school boards are in it for themselves.

Joseph Vendetti

Mr pelky & mr edwards:

I tend to agree with parts of both letters –

People that broke into capitol should be charged with treason. Trump & his people were responsible for starting the fire & ignition with gasoline.

I’m not happy with what appears to be inflationary markers in our economy as well as tax increases. Business tax increases (corporate income tax, pay roll tax, etc) will cause tax increases in the lower to middle to upper middle class. How you ask -? Businesses are responsible to their shareholders- the tax increases will result in less capital investments, higher overall prices on services & goods, and reductions of jobs. Increases in Minimum Wage leads to job reductions & price increases- so money & spending power is devalued. Inflation & job reduction is a back door tax on all!

Another thing I am upset with is not allowing our US pharma companies to patent the Covid vaccine formulas, now north korea, china, Russia, cuba can duplicate this with zero up front costs.

jclark124

Dave, yes I’m thrilled that the cruel, traitor, insurrectionist is out of office and that Biden won by over 7 million votes! Biden’s main goal was to crush the virus and get the economy going, and he’s doing it. Yes there are adjustments (bumps) coming out of a once in a century pandemic, and believe inflation and prices will stabilize. Biden plans on investing in the middle/lower classes instead of hand-outs to the already wealthy. Gasoline is up because of the hacking of a private company, and Biden wants to invest in infrastructure to raise US to #1 again. The border was like shaking a soda bottle, and the situation has greatly improved with an 80% drop of children in custody. ‘Energy independent’ was rated as “half-true” and 45 never cared one bit about the environment–only dollar signs and power in his eyes. Now if we could just get rid of 45 once and for all!

RAYMOND HARRIS

Dave Edwards, you are wrong as usual. First, you should be glad that the Dems elected Biden who currently enjoys a 63% favorability rating, according to the AP. Trump never reached 50% in four years! But let’s go through your comments to dispel what you wrote.

“Gasoline is up $1 a gallon.” As has been written several times, you cannot compare prices with Trump’s pandemic year in 2020 since demand was incredibly lower. A better comparison was 2019 when prices were similar in the Spring that reflected producers changeover to the summer blend. The recent gasoline hack (you implied it was Biden’s fault which it isn’t) gave companies the excuse to raise prices, particularly in the east and southeast.

“President Trump made us energy independent.” Wrong president; it was Obama.

“The Middle East is on fire. President Trump brought five Muslim countries into a peace agreement with Israel.” While it was good that that happened, the current conflict is not Biden’s fault. Trump actually caused a major problem by moving the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem where some of the Israeli-Arab conflict is occurring. Trump and his pet son-in-law and Secretary of State Pompous-ass did nothing to encourage a two-state solution.

“Under President Trump, our border was secure and a system was set up for refugees seeking asylum.” No it wasn’t. Trump left the border in disarray and treated the immigrants like animals. He dismantled some of the physical structures needed to house the incoming immigrants, so the Biden administration had to quickly reestablish them. The border has been a long running issue that needs bi-partisan solutions.

“Prices for food are skyrocketing. Inflation was running half of what it is now.” Another example that you know very little about economics. Since Biden has the pandemic under better control and things are opening up, demand for all commodities are way up as the economy rebounds, but supplies are lagging behind which causes prices to rise. But they certainly are not skyrocketing.

” The United States was respected around the world.” You have to be kidding. Trump was despised by our allies who didn’t trust him. He was a novice in foreign affairs whereas Biden is the most experienced in that area than any president since H.W. Bush.

Obama made us energy independent, how by all of the regulation. He made us dependent on foreign oil. You live in an alternate universe.

RAYMOND HARRIS

This is from the Houston Public Media: When President Trump addressed the nation on the potential for conflict with Iran last Wednesday, he said this: “Over the last three years, under my leadership, our economy is stronger than ever before, and America has achieved energy independence.”

Trump said that has changed America’s strategic priorities. “We are independent,” Trump said, “and we do not need Middle East oil.”

“Well, he’s incorrect,” said economist Edward Hirs, energy fellow at the University of Houston. “We are not energy independent. We consume roughly 20 million barrels of crude oil each day. We only produce about 12.5 million barrels of crude oil each day.”

Hirs said it is true that much of what the U.S. imports now comes from regions more stable than the Middle East.

“Now 4 million from Canada is very significant, Mexico, Brazil,” he said, “but the fact is that oil can be diverted by other countries who need it more.”

So we may both be wrong, but fuel oil production under Obama rose significantly. He didn’t make us dependent on foreign oil.

jclark124

Yes, Raymond. Biden started out behind the 8 ball with certain issues simply because 45 refused to allow a peaceful transfer of power. Thankfully Biden had so much experience, or the transition could have been much worse. Biden had to start at the border reuniting separated children from 45’s cruel MESS! It seems to me that even when new issues come up, Biden is on it–he sends out his amazing team of highly qualified individuals.

Joseph Vendetti

Ray:

Do you believe demand for food for the last 15 months was less then 2019? If you do, I suggest you look at USDA website & research papers they’ve done with the actual #’s. In home food purchases (cooking at home) were up over 12.2% from 2019 – not surprising since 334 million of us still had to eat, drink, etc. Overall sales between Food in and out was still up by just over 3.6% from 2019. Also not surprising that total gasoline & fuel products used in 2020 was also more then 2019 (more ppl driving instead of flying, more goods going to and from stores to end users, ), also up new home construction- ppl moving out of large cities, fear of Covid, violence, low mortgage rates – so this growth has been tracking for well over a year.

But now all of a sudden its demand that is driving prices higher? I don’t think so, our markets react too fast & the data collected is almost instantaneous these days.

What you have if my intuition is correct and I know in my business we are raising prices as well because of the proposed tax increases. We are preparing to pay almost 15% more in our business between income tax, pay roll tax, gross receipts tax, fuel surcharge tax – so to prevent guys from getting laid off we have to pass those costs on. It is inevitable that Exxon, Shell, BP, Kelloggs, General Food, GE, Coors, International Paper, US Steel, Ford, etc, Etc.

The administration with plans for tuition, health care, green energy, dolling out trillions in programs that have no economic return – someone (us) have to pay for that.

Florida2015

Mr Vendetti, How do you determine that health care, tuition, green energy, infrastructure rebuilding has no economic return? Sounds like you have employees? Do they have health care or assistance from you to obtain it? Education assistance to advance there skills, maybe ones that help your company, Good infrastructure for you receive and ship your end products? Day care if working mothers are in your employ. Would these all not have economic return for you, your employees and company? And yes there is no free lunch. Being retired I paid for schools in NY and now here, when my last kid graduated in 1989. I always thought I was contributing to maybe the next set of leaders to solve our problems. Cost of doing business as they say. If you have to raise prices your competition will also or they won’t be your competition very long.

The GOP dumping the more conservative Cheney for the less conservative Stefanik tells you all you need to know about the current party. It has nothing to do about policy and everything to do about one’s loyalty to Trump’s brand of lies, disinformation, and grievance politics. Elise Stefanik still hasn’t informed her constituents how the election in HER district that provided her a victory was somehow immune from all of the supposed (unsubstantiated) election fraud that caused Donald Trump to lose his election.

Joseph Vendetti

Florida:

I’ll answer all your questions-

Never said anything about infrastructure not having economic return.

Our low # of employees is 226 high number in 2020 is 416.

All of our employees have 100% company paid health & dental insurance. Prior to the affordable care act – insurance was much more affordable and had more coverage

We provide educational advancement dollars based on years with the company if they want to go from craft (operators, burners, laborers, drivers) – most (87%) want to stay in their hired roles because of their hourly wage, OT work, per diem, – majority of our craft are in the high five figures or low six figures. We also provide semi-annual safety training and education refreshers to keep them all on top of their game. For realatives (spouses and children) we offer 10 – $10,000 educational scholarships per year, that can be used for 4 years as long as the student maintains a “B” average.

Our heavy equipment – yellow iron, people, use roads, bridges and highways (Infrastructure), and assume that when we pay federal & state taxes, over the road permits, tolls, thats what that money is going towards.

We have company supplied day care in our offices in CA, TX, NV, AZ, OH, FL and NY for in office workers as well as field workers. The unfortunate thing is 95% of our craft workers travel – most of our projects are not located where our bricks/mortar offices are (they maybe in the region). So those rooms are very underutilized.

We pay 100% for all these services and added more and more over the years. Good companies pay for these types of services and don’t need the gov’t doing it (thus we are paying twice for it).

Death and Taxes – Certainly understand we have to pay taxes. No one is trying to avoid taxes – but in the US raising the taxes 15% is excessive to say the least.

Certainly don’t piss down my back and tell me its raining. Don’t tell me that inflation isn’t just a tax on the lower and middle class and all these programs have a price tag that will be passed to the end consumer thus any slight stimulus check or minimum wage increase will be gobbled up by increased costs in gas, food, utility bills, etc.

Just a couple comments. This has been a great forum to read today. Good criticism, good responses.
But ay caramba, you can tell who needs to step away from Facebook for a long while.
– Many are hanging on that “Experimental” tag like they actually understand what it means. And the fact that they also seem to be worshipers of the previous President (who was twice impeached, served only one term and will never again because there are so many criminal investigations ongoing) speaks volumes. They don’t seem to understand how mentally lazy they look since it only takes a couple minutes to understand the basics of mRNA technology and to understand what goes into “Emergency Use Authorization”. It does not make you look like you have some kind of edge over the “sheeple”; that you’re some kind of hero or rogue. You’re just fools to hang your credibility on what you find in front of you on social media. You *can* know the truth if you get off your mental couch of complacency and do it yourselves.
(You may also find you’re sided with all the White supremacists in America, which may or may not be a problem for you)

– High praise to Florida2015 for your elegant response to Joe. I like Joe, I like anyone who is so familiar with explosives. But didn’t Trump give business a rather huge tax cut? One that was pretty much panned and criticized by economists everywhere? So you’re saying things are worse now than…when? And at what point do you honestly feel you can judge the economic stimuli enacted by the Biden administration? The month after? 3 years after? I’m not a business owner, nor an economist, but since the recovery from the Great Depression took years, and assuming this calamity is at least as historic, shouldn’t we just cooperate and also provide meaningful feedback when we can? This is the administration the American people have chosen and this is how it will be for at least the next 3.5 years. And it will likely be turbulent so maybe we should accept that that’s the new reality. I’m pretty certain we’re at least in the hands of grown-ups now.

Florida2015

Mr Vendetti, Thank you for such a through and complete run down of what your company provides. If my opinion matters you work for a great company that realizes the value of it,s employees. Wish we could say that for others.
Did you see the headline the other day Kroger grocery chain(one of the biggest in the county) was eliminating the $2.00 per hour hazard pay they had paying for store front line employees. Could see some justification for that but his bonus as CEO was reported at $22.5 million. Stories like that are why companies like yours appear to be on the right side of issues for the average worker. Thanks again for taking the time to answer my questions. I was a GM for small manufacturing company in Glenville before retirement and had to deal with Southern based mentality (Corporate) about wages and benefits for our employees.

Joseph Vendetti

Chuck:

Yes we benefited from Trump tax cuts. But I don’t think he was the choice or should be President in 2020. The benefit didn’t out weigh the cost (we lost face in the world, terrible role model, over all nutty liar,)

I will give President a chance because I like his temperament, i like what he said on the campaign trail about working across party lines, not raising taxes on $400k or less, no court packing.

What I’ve seen is the cancellation of XL pipeline, record executive orders, open to more court seats, and increase in taxes.

Don’t like that President Biden told leather neck workers out right in PA & OH that he wasn’t going to mess with XL pipeline – then 2 days on job it was axed. Doesn’t give me much confidence in his other promises.

Florida2015

The section of XL had been stored before, restarted by Trump. Believe Native Tribes had something to do with being stopped. Lost 2500 immediate jobs, but not the thousands and thousand RW scream claimed. And Canada had been alerted to it being stopped. Several good links to it’s history available for researching.

LOUIS RESTIFO

William Myers:
Continuing with the Wizard of Oz metaphors, it’s only a matter of time before the Republican Senators and Congressmen, respectively take on the appearances of the winged monkeys and the Winkle Guards and start chanting “Oh-Ee-Yah! Ee-Oh-Ah!”….when, low and behold a house comes out of nowhere and appropriately lands on Marjorie Taylor Greene.

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