Letters to the Editor

August 5, 2010

To the editor:

I would like to thank City Administrator Jeff Dingman for ensuring that the flashing crosswalk beacons were placed at Eighth and Ames streets.

Several months ago Jeff discovered that the Kansas Department of Transportation had removed those beacons from the original plan for improvements under the Safe Routes to Schools grant awarded to Baldwin City.

Jeff diligently petitioned the state to install the beacons as a separate project, using funds that had been unspent on the original Safe Routes grant. Since the cost of the beacons was covered entirely by unspent funds, it did not require any monies from the city to make this happen.

I appreciate having a local government official like Jeff who looks out for our community and works hard to make sure it is the best it can be.

Dave Hill

Rural Baldwin City

To the editor:

Living out here as we do in a “red” state, I can sometimes feel a bit overwhelmed by the noise coming from various astro-turf, “Tea Party” or Koch family-generated outlets. So, while adding another voice to this cacophony might seem confusing, I think I might be able to provide an example of civility and hope to be a more calming influence.

First, I'd like to state uncategorically that I love the President of the United States and what he is doing for this country. The corollary to this is that I am also very happy to be represented in the Kansas legislature by the two fine and competent persons who come from Baldwin City. Both Senator Holland and Representative Brown have used this newspaper as a means of giving transparent information about the legislative process and their efforts to influence it.

To take health insurance as an example, my own history has been to pay plenty for a range of services that have run from inefficient to non-existent. Polling suggests that very few in America love or admire the executives and bureaucrats of this “industry.” So, it has been puzzling in the extreme to see the success of the right wing in demonizing efforts to improve health care. I suspect that the public will come to embrace provisions that allow them to get timely checkups and that the insurance companies may find it is bad marketing to impose precipitous rate hikes in what will now almost certainly be a more competitive market.

I am also puzzled that Reps. Tiahrt and Moran are not taken to account for their roles in racking up massive deficits through pharmaceutical subsidies, unlimited war spending and top-tier tax cuts. They seem arrogantly willing to claim the mantle of “fiscal conservatism”. What actions can either point out as evidence for such a claim?

The public discussion in this part of the country seems to suggest that no one approves the efforts of the President and Congress to redress injustices, corruption and inefficiency of the past decade. I, for one, am glad to see these efforts go forward. I suspect as well that others in Baldwin City and throughout the state feel similar impulses.

Christopher Hamill

Baldwin City

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