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Talkback

In this day and age, and especially when seniors are usually the most vocal about taxes, it seems irresponsible to build a building with town money that is restricted to only one segment of the population while others go without. This is a bunch of hubbub about nothing. A senior center is a building with rooms, and ramps....pretty much the same thing a youth center would include. Youth are at school during the day, seniors are not - there are lots of ways to stagger the uses. Programming can be creative to make the best and most harmonious use of one community center. Seniors are after all still part of the "community." ...(full comment)

Letter: A senior center only

Thank you, nobiomass. I don't have the scientific facts at my fingertips, but I knew we were going to go astray when he started with "I firmly believe..." Beliefs don't count. Facts do. ...(full comment)

Letter: I offer a challenge

My goodness Mr Bates! All you have to do is a Google search to prove you wrong. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-08-31/solar-wind-power-costs-drop-as-fossil-fuels-increase-iea-says http://www.worldwatch.org/renewables-becoming-cost-competitive-fossil-fuels-us I have to admit, I do swallow scientific fact about the rate in which the planet is warming, hook line and sinker. Even if you don't understand data, the photos are compelling. http://climate.nasa.gov/evidence/ Mr Bates, are you suggesting that the pollution of BILLIONS of people have no effect on the earth and its atmosphere? ...(full comment)

Letter: I offer a challenge

Some cannot afford the initial cost of solar panels. So again let us stick it to the poorer among us! Gus L. ...(full comment)

Letter: I offer a challenge

Input 'solar panels' and 'carbon neutral' into your favorite search engine. Numerous studies exist that disprove your belief. One might assume that 20% efficiency of a solar panel is pathetic, since that's obviously a lot less than 100% efficency. However, the theoretical maximum output of a solar cell, given the limits of the materials and the physics involved, is going to generally be somewhere around 35%, so 15-20% efficiency isn't bad. Most Americans already own an 'appliance' that they depend on and use frequently, that operates between 15-25% efficiency. It's their car. If they’re going to sell it and walk everywhere until someone comes up with one that's carbon neutral, they've got a lifetime of walking ahead of them. The Prius and the Volt don't produce (net) electricity, they consume it both in production and operation, hence there is no applicable carbon 'payback' period, as there is for solar panels. They may be less 'dirty' than alternative vehicles, but they’re 'dirty' nonetheless. Not true of solar panels. For those worried about their neighbors 'sticking it to them' with their solar panels? Get some solar panels of your own. Battlefield leveled. Yes, the earth has natural climate cycles. That doesn't put the lie to anthropomorphic climate effects, any more than the inevitability of dying means that modern medicine is nonsense. Whether one person believes in human influenced climate change while another doesn't makes no difference, because facts and science don't require, nor do they change, in the face of one person's support or another's disbelief. ...(full comment)

Letter: I offer a challenge

CEO pay has escalated to 500 or more times what the least paid workers earn, and at the very top of this mountain, these folks pay less than 10% on their haul, Often LESS, while all other folks pay full share. Billionaire corporations are in debt up to their eyeballs, borrowing at 0% interest, with deferred taxes: while young people can only borrow money for college at 8% interest. For the past forty years, corporations routinely short pension funds, have all manner of complex loopholes to slough off debt and remain in business, while the leadership is not held accountable for failure, or for providing promised jobs. The whole "lifestyles of the rich and famous thing" is nauseating . . . ever bigger McMansions, multiple homes, yachts: Off Shore accounts: not willing to pay for the nation that supports them. Meanwhile, our infrastructure is crumbling, deferred maintenance on everything is beginning to have devastating consequences, and "we shouldn't have to pay for anything" has become the outrageous mantra of people whose greed and narcissism are wrecking this nation and this planet. There is money for businesses, but the highest takers are the ones ruining it for small community businesses, and the sooner these smaller businesses wake up and stop allying themselves against their communities the better. Billionaire companies should not be infesting Chambers of Commerce, nor manipulating the tax structure. ...(full comment)

Letter: Handicapping business

Bernie Sanders is also filling arenas wherever he goes, and he actually has something to say. Your guy is just an overgrown playground bully and don't kid yourself that he cares even the slightest little bit about you; he only cares about him. ...(full comment)

Letter: Oh those Clintons

Flint's problem started with the city wanting to change from Detroit water to the Flint river. You can also look to the time Flint was a bustling city. Auto plants providing a good tax base which could have made the replacement of the water pipes to non lead ones. Which should have happened years ago. Plenty of workers around. So what happened? The squeeze was put on the auto industry to be taxed more to provide more money for social programs ( hand outs instead of hand ups). The unions also keep demanding more and quality of workmanship declined. The Japanese dumped cars in the US.. of better quality. Americans wanted more and gave less, but they also wanted others to give more. That started a spiral effect. The auto industry moved out of the area. To the south ( non-union) AND out of the country. Look at how many people lived in cities in Michigan years ago and now. Detroit at its peak was 1.8 million and now its about 672, 000. Other cities in Michigan are close to that ratio. So when cost kept going up, automation and robots came along to keep cost down. People who put cars together made more than the average american worker. Regular american workers could not afford what it was costing to buy cars and that started the spiral. I was a Navy recruiter in the Detroit area in 85-89. The average auto worker I knew was making about 90k. Most kids in high school in my area had new or 2 year old cars. I envied that! But they would all tell me that their dad was going to get them a job at Ford. They were dreaming as the exodus had already started. Now how much does it take to slap a part on a assembly line? Some training but not much is needed. If you know Maslow's hierarchy theory you get the wages part. So when the auto indurstry left , it left behind a workforce that was not highly educated nor sought education while they worked. In fact you did not need a high school diploma to work in the auto industry.. When you squeeze a lemon and it leaves what are you left with? The need for another lemon, and another might not want to come and get the life squeezed out of it. ...(full comment)

In the Arena: Rumbling over Greenfield

Great!! Now work on your graduation rate. ...(full comment)

Committed to memory: Mahar students recite poems for school contest

Can't wait to visit your new location, Holly and Chris! Your new dishes sound wonderful!! Cynthia and Bob from Keldaby ...(full comment)

The return of Blue Rock Restaurant in Shelburne Falls

Flint was dismissed as a manufactured problem too. Public health and safety are being eroded by oligarchy and their henchmen stripping money out of government to send it to wealthy interests . . . with give aways to "companies" (no taxes, and "sweet deals" from the Gov. and their greedy CEOs, while gutting basic things like clean water. Sewage dumped into rivers is consistent with the long term plan for the U.S. in the current corrupt system: you can't see microbes so its a perfect crime. ...(full comment)

In the Arena: Rumbling over Greenfield

I've been a supporter of WMUA since the 1980's. I requested a refund of my donation and have made a pledge to public radio because they listen to listeners. And thank goodness for Valley Free Radio which is welcoming WMUA show hosts. ...(full comment)

Letter: Dismantling WMUA

Millions of Americans are also tired of hate speech. Half the wealth of our nation is now in the hands of a very few individuals who pay hate speakers to cultivate divisions among our citizens. Its an old tactic, and very sad that it works in our country. The tactic is to get people to hate and blame their neighbors, while the wealth and resources of a nation are stolen away. It's working very well. I'm sure they're grateful to you for all the name calling. And of course grateful that you were watching the big media distractions, rather than paying attention to policies like Glass Steagal being dismantled: that was the real scandal. You might be surprised to discover that your case of "the hate" is a most inaccurate picture of your neighbors. ...(full comment)

Letter: Oh those Clintons