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Best energy solution is to decrease demand

President Obama’s obsession with alternative power systems is commendable. However, the technology is not there.

Windmills and solar panels have been around for more than 40 years. Spain, Germany and Holland have all abandoned their commitment to windmills as unworkable.

The Dutch have used windmills for centuries to drain their land, and they can’t make it work. There is much more potential in decreasing power usage. No car needs an engine larger than four cylinders, with a top speed around 70 mph. Public transportation systems must be greatly increased, i.e., the old European systems. Houses are too large. I estimate that a series of 10-by-10 modular rooms would suit most purposes, which can be added or subtracted as needed.

Most importantly, the world population must be reduced. The carrying capacity of the earth’s natural resources — agricultural land, water and wood — are already strained. Fossil fuels will become increasingly scarce. These shortages are what start wars. We either do it voluntarily or wait for war, famine and disease to do it for us. Right now, solar and wind power are pie in the sky. Once discovered, any practical distribution system would take decades.

Ed Philpott


Republicans’ plan: divide and conquer

The Republican Party has divided American voters by using the Great Backlash. Backlash mobilizes voters with explosive social issues, from busing to women’s and other human rights issues.

Cultural issues are raised to get votes so Republicans can achieve their economic goals: an international free market, privatization of Social Security, privatization of Medicare and Medicaid, deregulation of banking and de-unionization of workers.

This resulted in middle-class wage stagnation since 1970 and an income gap that’s the largest since the 1920s. As Thomas Frank says in his best-seller, “What’s the Matter with Kansas, “Voters may think that values matter most, but when Republicans are elected, values take a back seat to money.”

Vote against abortion; vote to get those politically correct college professors; vote against big government; vote against taxes and those so-called elite Democrats and you get: rollback of the capital gains tax, electricity deregulation, debt due to lack of revenue and, as Frank states, “a social order in which wealth is more concentrated than ever in our lifetime and in which workers have been stripped of power and CEOs are rewarded in a manner beyond imagining.”

As the old saying goes, “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.”

Voters, don’t get fooled again.

Jim Dye

Pleasant Garden

U.S. has lost its way

The whole world is watching. Have we lost our moral compass?

One out of every five American children goes to bed hungry.

Our infrastructure is falling apart.

Our schools have been crippled.

Americans are losing their jobs in unbelievable numbers.

Homelessness and hunger are rampant.

Our men and women are dying in foreign countries.

And, as if ignoring the above, we respond with:

Outright racism.

New homophobic laws.

New voting laws that make it more difficult for some Americans to vote (such as the poor, the elderly and the infirm).

Denial of access to health care to 50 million of our citizens.

Almost all of our politicians are failing us:

Some by commission ... by passing bad laws.

Some by omission ... by not preventing their passage.

The whole world is watching.

Freddi Duehring


Amendment is chilling to victims of abuse

Married couples don’t start that way. And the path to matrimony is full of potential dangers. No matter how careful one is, the acquaintance date or long-term partner can become abusive. Scary situations have become so common that teens now attend seminars on dating violence.

This is why North Carolina has domestic violence laws that defend unmarried people — from teens on their first date to cohabitating senior citizens — against physical abuse, sexual assault and stalking. Restraining orders and other legal tools acknowledge that abuse in a romantic relationship differs from other kinds of aggression.

But if it passes, Amendment One is likely to prohibit legal recognition of any dating relationships. This would take away our court system’s ability to enforce domestic violence protections unless a couple is married (See: pp. 14-18). Abusers will get off the hook and out of jail, as they have in other states passing similar amendments. And every potential abuser will know this.

Amendment One could remove an important legal safety net for all unmarried state residents. Please vote against it on May 8.

Sharon Shepard


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