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Letters to the Editor - Nov. 7

November 07, 2011

Not bigger government, smarter government


To the editor:

In his column, Tom Firey mentioned my name and refuted a few points which I made in my letter to The Herald-Mail. Firey glosses over a few facts to say that I was wrong in the position I took about limited government. Obviously, he did not understand the fact that I was not arguing for a big government. I argued for a smart government that will do its duty right. My reference to diversity has nothing to do with race or ethnic background; I was referring to different ideas, mostly contradictory, resulting in the distortion of the real problems we face.

I am for a government that acts on facts without being pulled and pushed by the special interests. I am glad that he brought out the issue of some drugs being withdrawn from the market even though they were approved by the FDA. Well, the truth is that some of those approved drugs were mostly approved as a result of coercion put on the FDA by some members of Congress. This was precisely the point I made that government is not functioning correctly — not due to its size, but due to constant interference from outside by the pharmaceutical companies.

Let me mention an example of interference. A few years ago, Rep. Dan Barton, R-Indiana, introduced a bill in Congress that would strip the FDA of its power to protect patients from clinical trials where safety is an issue. The reason was to give the opportunity to a child who just had undergone surgery for a brain tumor in order to permit a doctor, who was practicing an unapproved medical procedure, to treat the child. This was reported in “Science.” How can we expect the FDA to do its job right under such interference? This has nothing to do with big government. Let me emphasize that the bureaucratic community reflects the sentiment and the wishes of our elected officials. Useless laws by Congress lead to useless results by the government employees. As they say, garbage in garbage out. Our elected officials are not providing the government with smart rules.

I would like to thank Mr. Firey for giving Mr. Nader a little credit and mentioning my name for discussing the safety of cars. We should also mention other aspects which were the result of EPA insisting on emissions reduction. About 20 years ago, on a cold day it was difficult or impossible to start one’s car engine. Now even in coldest weather it takes only a few seconds to do it. If it were not for EPA, we would be still using carburetors.

Let me summarize my position. I state in no uncertain term that I am not for a big government. What I am advocating is a right size government and elected officials providing them with smart rules to do their job as required. After all, my professor was right. “There is always a limit to our intelligence but there is no limit to our stupidity.”


S.V. Yumlu
Hagerstown



Service of our veterans is appreciated


To the editor:

May I express my appreciation to all the brave men and women who serve or have served our country and help to protect me and my rights as an American citizen. We don’t say thank you enough.

The past year has been a hard one for us as some of our closest friends, who were veterans, have gone on to heaven to receive their final reward. Your smiles will be missed Uncle Jack Fisher, Charles Dalhamer, Bernard Barnhart and “Ockie” Hetzel.

Nov. 11 is set aside to honor our veterans and there are many nice programs during that time. Please attend one; you will be so glad you did. Our Sharpsburg ceremony will be at 11 a.m. in the square. I am proud to be an American and lucky to be one too! I just had the honor of meeting seven of the Navajo Code Talkers from World War II while we were on a bus trip to New Mexico.

Don’t forget to remember our troops now serving too. The holidays are coming and it can be very hard for them and their families. It seems we always know someone serving; our friend Alicia just came back and now Chase is over. Keep praying — God is still in control.


Darlene Hoffman
Sharpsburg



A few questions for our commissioners


To the editor:

Would one of the County Commissioners answer a few questions for me?

No. 1: When the plan for the new hospital at Robinwood was approved, were plans for a parking deck discussed? If not, are there any plans for one being built in the future? I think a two- or three-level parking deck would greatly improve the parking situation there. Parking there now is a disaster.

No. 2: You want the senior center at HCC. It seems like your mind is already made up. Why was HCC chosen instead of an area downtown? Is there a hidden reason for HCC, no one wants publicized?

If after a few years, if the senior center isn’t being used, who owns the building? Does HCC get to use the building — what do they get out of the deal?

No. 3: How can you justify the cost of wanting to build the two new roads you want to build (at HCC and the YMCA area). You said it was for the future expansion of the area. Where is the money coming from? Don’t say grants from the federal government, because it is broke and borrowing money to operate.

It is nice to think about the future when you can afford it, but you cannot build new roads when you can’t maintain the roads you have now. The county and state roads are in bad shape and everyone says there are no funds for repairs. You have to take care of today or there will be no future.


Charles Miller
Boonsboro

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