Regarding Deby Forry 11/5/20 “Rail Tie Wind Flyer Inaccuracies”

“Up to 675 feet” accurate!

“Up to 151 turbines” accurate!

Federal debt at $24 trillion with $262 trillion pension liabilities means unsustainable wind subsidies, means dinasauric idle turbines will stand, with no said revenues for the county.

Please take your inaccuracies and propaganda back to D.C.

Mark Carducci

Laramie

Regarding the proposed wind farm project

While I respect private property rights, property owners also have a responsibility to the neighborhood.

Members of the ranching organizations to which I belong oppose wind farms. They represent huge deposits to Wyoming landfills as the components are not recyclable. We respect the environment such that we avoid projects which kill scores of raptors, thus causing proliferation of the small rodents on which they prey. Some of these rodents carry bubonic plague or rabies.

We who truly love the land learn to use our ag resources to survive and produce food and fiber for the world. We strive to leave the land better than we found it.

Taylor H. Haynes

Laramie

Editor’s note: Taylor H. Haynes is the principal and CEO of Bull Mountain Cattle Co. LLC

Reluctantly in favor wind farm

The residents of Wyoming have been led to believe that the state is in dire financial straits. Yet, the five members of the Board of Land Commissioners (Board) denied leasing 4800 acres of state trust lands in Albany County to ConnectGen for construction of the Rail Tie Wind Project.

The Wyoming Constitution and state laws direct the board to manage state trust lands for two key purposes consistent with traditional trust principles: 1) long-term growth in value, and 2) optimum, sustainable revenue production.

The Office of State Lands and Investments (OSLI) is required by law to manage state trust lands to produce income to support public schools and other public institutions. Can Jillian Balow honestly say that the public schools will be better served with revenue of at least of $4400 and possibly as much as $38,000 per year from the 4800 acres compared to $480,000 per year?

Albany County is one of the financially poorest counties in Wyoming and relies on state money since there is very little mineral activity and virtually no manufacturing. State and Federal properties are exempt from taxes. If the Rail Tie wind project is built, the 4800 acres that currently contribute nothing in property taxes will become a part of the annual income estimated to be $3.8 million in taxes for Albany County and $1.3 million in taxes for the state.

I am not a staunch support of wind farms, as far as I am concerned the only thing “green” about a wind tower is the wind is still with us. I would much rather see wind towers across the prairie than housing developments. Cattle, antelope, deer and elk graze among the completed projects.

If the opponents of the Rail Tie wind project are so concerned with their view scape and the impression of the casual tourist why is there not more effort to clean up the abandoned buildings south of Mountain Cement as well as the west and north entrances to Laramie? Tourist come to Wyoming to see wildlife, ranches, livestock grazing and open spaces not housing developments.

I am perturbed by the fact that a few vocal opponents to the Rail Tie project can intimidate the Board to the detriment of the majority of the citizens of the State.

Carl Shaffer

Rock River

He got that right

Cheers for Derek Mancinho for his Nov. 8 Letter to the editor titled "We Are Divided." I agree completely with everything he said. I especially liked his closing sentence of “Celebrities and left leaning politicians have been making sport of insulting half of the public and yet these same individuals blame us for flaming the division!”

Janice Shuster

Laramie

Comparing COVID deaths

The first reported death in the United States from COVID-19 was on Feb. 6. Since then, 279 unimaginably tragic days have passed and the baleful microbe has claimed over 240,000 American lives.

Dare to average that out and the calculator will cite that 860 people have died each day. To put that number in perspective, a Boeing 737 carries 189 passengers. If four crashed daily with no survivors, there would still be 104 less casualties than those attributed to the coronavirus. Even so, nobody would want to board a Boeing 737 because of the rational fear that they would be one of the unlucky ones.

As a husband and a father, I am terrified of the coronavirus. That fear keeps me away from my parents, isolated from friends, and places a mask over my face. I wish more people would view the unpleasant emotion as a necessary motivator, not a character flaw.

Andrew Ginsburg

Southport, Conn.

What is a loser?

We all watch our President refusing to accept the will of the people. This is not surprising. Donald Trump has been using court cases his entire life to “muddy the waters” and cover up shady business dealing, marriage infidelity, and attack his enemies. This time he is attacking the citizens of the United States of America. Be clear this attack is an attack on every one regardless of how we voted. If we can no longer trust the honesty of our institutions we are doomed. Our democracy is dead!

What is a loser? Two Presidents in recent memory lost after their first term. Jimmy Carter, a Democrat, and George H. W. Bush, a Republican.

After leaving office Jimmy Carter went on to win the Noble Peace Prize. At age 96 he is a voice for decency heard throughout our country and the world. He is loved more now than when he sat in the office of President. Jimmy Carter is no loser!

George H. W. Bush is remembered as our 41st President but remembered even more so as a WWII hero shot down in the Pacific willing to die for our freedom. George H. W. Bush is no loser!

What will this sitting President do to hurt us in the next few months before leaving office? Just asking this question says everything one needs to know about Donald Trump. We finally see what a loser looks like in the office of President of the United States.

Are we Republicans, are we Democrats, or are we Americans? The future of this country hangs on our answer to this one simple question.

Roy Bane

Laramie

We don’t need a state income tax

It is always amusing to read people's letters bleating for a state income tax.

Forty-one states have an income tax and all but two or three states, are in the red, including our neighbors to the north and south.

Connecticut was the last state to enact an income tax to balance their budget, and they have been in the red ever since.

For 50 years, Wyoming has had a stream of revenue from severance taxes and if our governors and legislators had shown fiscal restraint and discipline, we would be sitting on a mountain of capital in savings with interest.

But instead the legislators went the drunken sailor route and expanded the state government far beyond what was necessary, added new departments, hired too many school administrators, built Taj Mahals, called schools at $300 to $400 per square foot, which we couldn't afford to maintain after construction.

I don't think the working people of Wyoming should pay for their mistakes, and desire for power.

Writers talk about the people paying their fair share, but never put a dollar amount on it.

I have paid my fair share to Wyoming and here's how I did it.

My wife and I decided to private school our children, which can be done very economically and affordable. By doing that, we saved the State of Wyoming over $700,000 by not using the state schools. The tax advocates have a long way to go to catch up with me.

A few months ago, I discovered that Wyoming has over 5,000 nonprofits in the state.

Nonprofits exist on “unearned income” or donations. Instead of taxing the “earned income” of the working people, let's start taxing the “unearned income” of nonprofits.

Wyoming could just take about 10% of what's in their bank accounts for starters and see how far that goes. There are some pretty wealthy non-profits in Wyoming.

You do understand that there is no such thing as a “Nonprofit” entity in reality.

They are simply non-taxable entities, but nonprofit sounds so much more politically correct and socially acceptable

Tom Schmit

Laramie

LDS members and health policy compliance

Part of the difficulty in getting some LDS citizens to comply with public health policy is legal overload. Members are commanded in so many things by the church, they find it difficult and even onerous to be commanded by other agencies too, like the government.

A related problem is an accident of Utah political history. The U.S. government required Brigham Young, who initially led both church and state, to give up one or the other position.

After Brigham chose to lead the church alone, the government quickly assumed a sort of second-class status among members.

One solution might be to recall Jesus’ holistic concept of church and state as two integral and necessary parts of the earthly “kingdom.” This concept makes room for separation of church and state, protection of religious freedom, payment of taxes, and active citizen participation.

Kimball Shinkoskey

Woods Cross, Utah

Sniffin, quit snivelin

’According to Bill Sniffin in his Nov. 11 editorial, “It was shameful how one-sided [the media’s] coverage has been for four years against Trump."

Seriously? This line reminds me of the lyrics of an old country song: “… they feed me bull and keep me in the dark.” Apparently, some folks like being treated like mushrooms. They don’t want to know the truth about their elected officials. They’d rather get their “news” from outlets spewing outrageous, made-up stories. You know, feel-good stories like the one insisting that anyone who dares to challenge the lies and crazy talk must be part of a top-secret pedophilia ring.

“The media” is a very broad term. We know which media sources offer accurate, well-researched reporting. I can think of a few in this great state of ours— outlets available to anyone ready to ditch the “bull” and learn the truth. Just remember, sometimes the truth hurts.

Mary Beth Baptiste

Laramie

Trump-McCarthy Connection

In his most recent editorial, Bill Sniffin called the media's treatment of Donald Trump "shameful." Below are few counterpoints on media coverage of Trump over his campaigns and presidency.

During the 2016 campaign, Trump dominated the airwaves, receiving endless, free coverage — far more than any other candidate — by saying the most outrageous and incendiary things, spouting lies, and re-tweeting conspiracy theories.

For example, Trump shamelessly promoted the Obama “birther theory” in the lead-in to the 2016 campaign, significantly boosting his popularity among a segment of the Republican party. Because he so thoroughly manipulated the media for his own gain, one could indeed argue that the media was responsible for Trump being elected in the first place.

Does Trump’s playbook remind you of another public figure, another demagogue, in recent history? Remember Senator Joseph McCarthy and the red scare of the 1950's?

McCarthy claimed the country was full of communist sympathizers and a government takeover was imminent. The airwaves were filled with probes, panels, and senate hearings to root out communists. Hundreds of careers were ruined by accusations without evidence. He was eventually censured by the Senate and died in disgrace a few years later. In contrast to McCarthy's fall from grace, however, Trump, with ample assistance from certain media outlets, will continue to be lionized for years to come.

(Coincidentally, McCarthy and Trump share the same playbook because of Roy Cohn. Roy Cohn was McCarthy’s protegee and later, in the 70s and 80s, became Trump’s mentor, lawyer, and fixer.)

After four years of Trump-induced chaos, the news media has evolved. Rather than endlessly debating and analyzing Trump's assertions, the press now refutes baseless accusations and lies in real time.

It is their responsibility to point out that the "emperor has no clothes," despite the blind allegiance of his base, and the cowardice and complicity of the republican leadership. The press and all of us have a responsibility to defend our democratic institutions from unsubstantiated claims of fraud from an amoral president.

Richard Allen

Laramie

Mask mandates vs. free choice

Many of us have seen Wyoming Department of Health’s pro-mask propaganda video online that opens with the words, “In Wyoming, we live and let live, even if the way we are living is different from usual.” However, with the new mask mandates, Wyoming Department of Health’s stance might be more accurately stated as “In Wyoming, you live the way we say, or we will come after you with law enforcement and fines up to $100 or $1000 and up to six months in jail, per Wyoming Statues 35-1-105 and 35-1-106.”

Masks are used for medical reasons and bear medical consequences; thus, masks must be recognized as a form of medical treatment. Dr. Jean Allais and Dr. Alexia Harrist are both in violation of their Hippocratic Oaths: free consent of the patient, not under mandate or threat, is a necessity for treatment. It’s easy to cite a few studies that encourage mask use, and it’s easy to cite a few studies that question mask effectiveness and safety. That’s why it’s so important to allow free choice. Forced medical treatment violates the right to healthcare choice, one of the most fundamental rights associated with the most basic human right: the right to life.

Also fundamental to the right to life is the right to self-defense. Due to laws that prohibit bearing weapons while masked, mask mandates essentially make all public spaces gun-free-zones, effectively abridging our right to bear arms without any debate or public involvement. On this basis alone, mask mandates are unconstitutional and unlawful.

When a government department controls a set of data that it uses to justify its own mandates, and to evaluate its actions without accountability to the public, isn’t there an obvious conflict of interest, and a lack of fundamental fairness? When our health department follows suit with international organizations like the WHO controlled by Bill Gates and China, do we really have local control? Fortunately, Albany County’s mask mandate Section 5e allows for exemption without explanation or documentation — but we don’t need permission to be exempt from illegal orders.

Lander Solon

Laramie

Thank you, Boomerang

As a current member of the Laramie Advisory Commission on Disabilities (LACD), I want to thank the Laramie Boomerang for sharing information about Disabilities Employment Awareness Month, which takes place each October, in their article on Oct. 31.

We are grateful for the Boomerang’s partnership and for their willingness to promote services that help engage people with disabilities in our community. LACD is an advisory commission that brings awareness about disabilities to the community and acts as an advisory to Laramie City Council.

In an effort to increase awareness about Disabilities Employment Awareness Month, LACD reached out to Zenith Business Services to highlight the work they are already doing to support jobseekers, primarily youth, young adults, and individuals with disabilities.

Zenith offers a comprehensive list of curriculum offerings to assist people seeking employment in developing and building the skills needed to experience professional success. Zenith offers both in-person and online workshops that are centered around workplace readiness skills training, disability accommodations, youth programs, career coaching and guidance, resume writing and editing, interview preparation, job placement, and many others.

Zenith believes that success looks different for each person and works to meet clients at their personal skill level, working alongside them as they begin to identify their individual professional aspirations. To help better meet the needs of today’s jobseekers, LACD and Zenith would like to encourage disability friendly organizations to partner with Zenith in providing valuable work-based learning experience (i.e. worksite tours, mock interviews, job shadows, and job placement) opportunities and in identifying common skills gaps within the workforce. Contact Amelia Kelso at Zenith Business Services ((307) 742-2192 or amelia@zbswy.com) for more information.

Jerrica Becken

Laramie Advisory Commission on Disabilities

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