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Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor for March 2

Letters to the Editor for March 2

  • Strock off target, as usual, with Triborough Amendment rant
  • Woodlawn neglected by city’s s
  • Strock off target, as usual, with Triborough Amendment rant

    Carl Strock is whining once again [Feb. 14 column], this time bemoaning the Triborough Amendment.

    Poor Carl, he’s like an addict when it comes to bashing state and other public employees. He just can’t stop. Oddly, he refers to this amendment without reference to the law it amended — the Taylor Law. I thought presenting something out of context like that was frowned upon in journalism classes.

    In fact when the Triborough Amendment is examined in the context of the law it amended, Carl’s point is sadly lost.

    Let me try to insert the historical perspective conveniently left out of Mr. Strock’s column. Triborough was an attempt by the Legislature and governor to regain the balance between labor and management that was necessarily lost as a result of the Taylor Law. The Taylor Law took away, and rightly so, for the greater good, the only real bargaining chip public employees ever had — the right to strike. Carl may have forgotten to mention that. That’s called a lie by omission.

    Yes, in return for not striking, old contracts are now allowed to remain in effect until new ones can be negotiated. Common sense tells us that restarting thousands of contract negotiations from Square One every two to five years would be prohibitively chaotic, anyway. Looked at together, the Taylor Law and its Triborough Amendment have proven to be one of the great compromises in our time. Management, unions and the general public have all benefited. The past 40 years of security, stability and countless uninterrupted services delivered by public employees are testaments to the forward-thinking individuals who enacted this legislation.

    Perhaps Carl’s anachronistic “Jimmy Olsen” bow tie is a symbol of his longing for “the good old days of striking teachers, police and snowplow drivers.” Maybe it’s just tied too tightly around his neck. Or are his public displays of disaffection with the Triborough Amendment an attempt at curmudgeonly humor? If he’s your paper’s version of a “low rent” Andy Rooney wannabe, you could get the real thing for a lot less. Andy’s mindless ranting is syndicated, believe it or not

    Greg Semione


    Woodlawn neglected by city’s snowplows

    If officials are still wondering how to stop the urban flight that is responsible for the decline of our cities, look no further than the road conditions following every snowstorm.

    Besides Mayor Stratton’s pay raise, where do our tax dollars go? Certainly not to plowing our streets.

    It’s now two days following a fairly significant storm, and the city plow crews have done nothing. Enough of a storm that the Daily Gazette reported on its Feb. 23 front page, “City gets salt in time for storm.” Well, where is it? Not on my street or any other in the Woodlawn neighborhood! The plows have not touched any of the roads.

    That’s not only unacceptable, but dangerous. There is still ice on the roadway under the snow from the last storm the city did not plow.

    Doesn’t Mayor Stratton live in the city? I wonder if his street is plowed? How about he pick up the phone and call his Department of Public Works and find out where the trucks and all of the “salt” are. Wake up before we all move out, Mr. Mayor.

    Vincent Igoe


    Earth may be warming, but it’s not our fault

    Congratulations to Vito Spinelli for his opinion Feb. 22, “Overheated rhetoric on climate change,” wherein he points out that the climate change rhetoric is overheated. I would like to offer additional information on scientific reports that also refutes man’s influence on climate change.

    The basic data, upon which the U.N. panel decided that CO2 [carbon dioxide] was the cause of the warming, was the “ice core” data that showed the CO2 level and global temperatures rose and fell in lockstep over the last 500,000 years.

    The IPCC [Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change] panel assumed the CO2 was the cause of the temperature change. But now David Evans, a researcher at the Ludwig von Mises Institute, has reported on further research, using higher-resolution data that allowed scientists to distinguish which came first, the temperature rise or the CO2 levels. This showed that the temperature changes preceded the CO2 changes on average by 800 years. Thus, CO2 could not be the cause of the warming.

    In his “An Inconvenient Truth,” Al Gore claims nine of the 10 hottest years on record have occurred in the last two decades. That was based on temperature data from NASA, and that data proved the trends of global warming. But a recent report by Toronto-based mathematician Steve McIntyre found errors with NASA’s temperature data. When the NASA data is corrected, the hottest year since 1880 becomes 1934 instead of 1998, which is now just second. 1921 is the third hottest. Four of the 10 hottest years were in the 1930s, with only three in the past decade. This indicates that man-made carbon dioxide from the post-1945 era is not a likely cause of the warming. To NASA’s credit they quickly made corrections.

    One of the scientists who was an active member of the IPCC scientific panel is John Christy. In an interview published in the Wall Street Journal, Christy refutes Al Gore’s conclusions: “I’m one of the few people in the world that actually builds these climate data sets — we don’t see the catastrophic changes that are being promoted all over the place.”

    Also, according to Christy, the extent of Antarctic ice has just reached its all-time maximum. Christy explains, that Mother Nature is so complex, and the uncertainties are great, that no one should speak with such certainty and such confidence about climate predictions.

    Therefore, while the earth temperature is currently increasing, it’s probably the result of natural phenomenon that man can do little to stop. This heating and subsequent cooling has been on going for millions of years and it won’t stop now. If we look at it with level heads, we would not take extreme actions, like putting carbon caps on our industrial activity, which would cause a loss of American jobs.

    Don Cazer


    Global warming critic was ill-informed

    After reading Vito Spinelli’s Feb. 22 letter, “Overheated rhetoric on climate change,” I would ask him to view the entire National Geographic documentary on global warning, and then make the same statements.

    Russ Pollard


    No problem with sound for opera at Proctors

    As a couple who twice walked out of performances because of faulty sound at Proctors’ main theater the first year it reopened, we were dismayed by the Feb. 21 letter by Drew Hartzell, criticizing the sound system at Proctors’ showing of the opera “Tristan and Isolde.” For us, it was wonderful; we will remember, even cherish, this performance. (The sound system in the main auditorium has been properly adjusted per our recent experience.)

    Knowing that the opera was four and one-half hours long, my husband and I decided to try each act and see if the production was worth experiencing; we had not liked the camera work of the first opera production at Proctors. The filming of this performance, which uses digital technology, was exceptional, as was the opera company’s production. We had also determined beforehand that, as the opera progressed, if we were too tired to enjoy the experience, we would leave at an intermission. It was worth staying until after midnight.

    We felt we were in the audience at the La Scala Opera House — one cannot expect more.

    Terri and David Smith


    Supermarket Courtesy 101 taught here

    When leaving the Ballston Spa Hannaford recently, a man in a wheelchair was entering, and he had one of their red hand-baskets on his lap. Before I even got into my vehicle, he was back at his. Obviously, he had used that hand-basket for his purchases, brought his groceries to his vehicle, then brought the hand-basket back into the store.

    For those of you who either leave your shopping cart next to your vehicle when you’re done with it, or walk past a shopping cart in the parking lot only to take one from the row in front of the store, shame on you!

    Kathy Hedgeman

    Ballston Spa

    Letters Policy

    The Gazette wants your opinions on public issues.

    There is no strict word limit, though letters under 200 words are preferred.

    All letters are subject to editing for length, style and fairness, and we will run no more than one letter per month from the same writer.

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