Letters to the editor

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Los Lunas VFW says thank you for support
Editor:
The Los Lunas Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), Daniel D Fernandez, Post 9676, says “thank you” to the community. On Sunday, Sept. 4, the Los Lunas VFW Post held its annual fundraiser raffle drawing and barbecue.  
The event was attended by many post members and community sponsors and supporters. The annual event was held at the Post Home located at the entrance to Daniel D Fernandez Park in Los Lunas.  
(I want to) thanked everyone who supported the post’s recent fundraiser raffle. This VFW Post of about 100 veterans will continue serving our community through our outreach programs, but we are unable to do so without the generous support of the public and successful fundraiser projects like this one.
VFW Post 9676 uses the funds it raises to continue its many outreach projects such as scholarships, youth activities, community volunteerism, troop support and assistance to the needy.
Recently, Post 9676 assisted a needy family by providing $2,000 for a family member’s funeral.  More than 60 percent of our post members are paid up life members, so we only receive a small percentage of the other members’ annual dues.
I want to thank each and every one of those who participated in the fundraiser raffle and barbecue, which was the most successful in the post’s history. We realize that we are living in very difficult financial times. That is why we are so grateful to all our sponsors and supporters.
We want to show our appreciation to: Christian Garcia’s (CG’s Concrete), County Commissioner Donald Holiday, local artist Anthony Garley, Pete’s Carpet, Mane Event, Hair Masters, Chano’s Hair Design.
Staples Office Supply, Home Depot, Serafin’s Chile Hut, Ron’s Place Ken’s Plumbing, attorney Elias Barela, Mathew Chavez Chile, Ron’s Place,  the more than 1,000 citizens who sold and purchased raffle tickets.
Christian Garcia, the owner of CG’s Concrete, told the assembled crowd, “these local men and women of Post 9676 have made significant personal sacrifice to keep our country free, and now they continue giving of their time and treasure to help the needy and less fortunate in our community. I will always support these veterans and I encourage you all to do the same. They are proving a great service to this community.”
Co-chairman of the fundraiser, Jack Lovato, and Jackie Aragon thanked the crowd for their support and promised that next year’s raffle will include even better prizes.  
The event ended with former County Commissioner Frank Gurule and Christian Garcia remembering all those lost on 9/11 by leading the group in singing “God Bless America.”

James Garley
Commander of VFW  
Post 9676

Green energy is good if everyone benefits
Editor:
The green energy virus, which should be called the Solyndra Syndrome, is epidemic and even infecting Valencia County.
PNM is forced to buy excess daytime solar power produced by private solar arrays for over twice what they can sell it for. Who do you think makes up the bonus going to someone with a solar panel?  
It is us the rest of the rate payers of course! On top of that, private solar panel owners get both state and federal tax credits and subsidies and in some cases outright grants to cover the cost of installation.  
The average rate payer not only pays more in electric bills, but also in taxes at the state and federal levels to pay someone else’s electric bill.
A couple of Los Lunas and Belen restaurants recently announced they are installing solar arrays that will eliminate their electric bills altogether.  They have received outright grants from the federal government along with the federal tax credits covering over half the cost.  The rest is covered by state tax credits and PNM paying for daytime electricity.  
PNM rate payers and U.S. and New Mexico tax payers are footing the electric bills for these businesses.  
Another example is the plan for the city of Belen to install a solar facility to serve the sewer treatment plant.  
The media reported a South Korean company will build the Belen facility for $6 million, take all the subsidies, tax credits and the PNM inflated payments for excess electricity and then sell the installation to the city in seven years for $2.7 million.  
Based on data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration, a plant like this should only cost about $2.3 million.  
So after reaping all the government subsidies and PNM payments, the South Korean’s will sell a used facility to the city for more than it should cost originally.  
These situations are small, local examples of corporate cronyism and public-private partnerships where government is deeply involved in or in bed with private enterprise and picks the winners and losers based on politics rather than economic freedom.  It creates an unfair advantage and squanders tax payer money.  
Green energy is a good thing as long as it can compete in a free market environment.  However, it is not right for the majority of us to pay the electric bills of a selected few.

James Crawford
Los Lunas

9/11 committee thanks those who gave support
Editor:
The 10th anniversary of 9/11 is a memory we don’t want to relive, and this is why it is important that our Memorial Park be a testament to the sacrifices and heroism of that tragic day, and we pray that this will bring some comfort to the families knowing that “we will never forget.”
Thank you to all the participants who came together to express their love and support to our first responders, our armed forces and the families who suffered a loss of their loved ones.
The following is how they appeared on the program, which was designed by Belen Fire Chief Many Garcia:
M.C. Express, Belen City Councilor Wayne Gallegos, Belen High School JROTC, Belen Fire Chief Manny J. Garcia, Shaianne Lash, National Anthem contest winner.
Commander Gill Mullins, Belen VFW Post 2387; Commander James Garley, Los Lunas VFW Post 9676; Commander Jim Martinez, DAV Chapter 29; Commander Steve Taylor, AMLG Post 81.
Pastor Rudy Espinosa, Christian Faith Chapel; White Doves Release: Pearls in the Sky, Michael P. Romero; Belen School Superintendent Ron Marquez.
Belen Police Department, Belen Fire Department, Los Lunas Fire Department, Bosque Farms Fire Department, Peralta Fire Department, Valencia County Emergency Services, Tome-Adelino Fire Department, Meadow Lake Fire Department, Los Chavez Fire Department, Manzano Vista Fire Department.
Dr. John Kiesling, Romna McKee, Sen. Michael S. Sanchez, Mag. Robert Aguilar, 515th CSSB N.M. Army National Guard; Don Scott, bureau chief of New Mexico Homeland Security Emergency Management; Deputy Chief Archie Koenmund, FDNY (Ret.); the families of Sgt. Garrett A. Misener and Pvt. Charles M. High IV.
Belen firefighter Frank Ortega Jr., Belen firefighter Josh Mazon, Belen firefighter Gabrielle Bustamante, Mike Silva, Boy and Girl Scouts.
Valencia County News-Bulletin, Belen VFW Post 2387, New Mexico Army National Guard, 515th CSSB; Belen Chamber of Commerce, New Mexico Travertine, Christian Faith Chapel, Our Lady of Belen Catholic Church, Calvary Chapel Rio Grande Valley, Ken Gibson, Weeping Tree Landscaping.
MyBank, Becker Street Pub, Montano’s Restaurant, Belen Goju Ryu Karate, Hair Innovations, Pete’s Cafe, Rutillios New Mexican Restaurant.
Rick DeRose Photography, Belen Senior Center, Belen Print Shop and Buckland Pharmacy.

Belen Fire Chief Manny Garcia
Commander Gill Mullins
Gloria Sanchez
Belen 9/11 committee

Republicans should take our criticism
Editor:
Being tag-teamed by local Republicans is not that exciting, but I suppose it is entertaining for Valencia County News-Bulletin readers.
1. Is there no one, Republican or otherwise, who has a plan to pay off the Republican national debt of $25 trillion?
The current Republican Party policy of “do nothing,” just hands that burden off to your grandchildren, who have a tough enough future already, what with Republican-backed off-shoring and down-sizing and re-privatization of health care and voter suppression and pollution and elimination of the minimum wage.
2. William Darcy (Letters Aug. 14) asks me to “admit” that I am a lefty, a weightless request.
I am a progressive. But since that puts me to the left of Attila the Hun and the Koch Brothers and other fascist idols of the Republican Right, so be it.
3. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were indeed created in 1978, and were just fine until the mortgage industry was deregulated by the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act of November 1999 pushed by Republican Sen. Phil Gramm and former Republican House Speaker Newt Gingrich.
Two things to note here: Phil Gramm became a lobbyist for the Swiss bank U.B.S. in 2002, and all commodity and financial bubbles are caused by deregulation of speculative trading.
4. Darcy complains that “Democrats have had control of Congress for the majority of the post-WWII period to present.”
Well, except for the 1947-49 80th “do nothing” Congress, the 1953-55 83rd Congress, the 97th to 98th, the 104th to 105th Newt Gingrich Congresses, the 106th to 108th Dennis Hastert Congresses, and the last three Congresses where Republicans prevent Democratic legislation with record numbers of filibusters and permanent holds on legislative branch appointments.
The critical matter is not who wields the gavel so much as the damage done to the commons and by whom. Republican placement of Alito and Roberts on the Supreme Court (and cowardice of the Democrats) led directly to the federalist society victory that is “Citizens United v. F.E.C,” which decreed the United States a fascist country in January 2010.
5. Calling me a liar because I never heard of “cut, cap and trade” is severely-twisted anti-logic and only demonstrates Darcy’s lack of integrity.
6. Robert Sanders (Letters Aug. 17) on the other hand accuses me of ad hominem commentary, which is then followed by Sanders’s ad hominem attack on myself. What’s the word for that? Oh, yeah: hypocrisy.
7. True, I did not take calculus, nor do I need or miss it.
8. George Soros is a straw man. If he was spending all the money that the Republican noise machine accuse him of, the Democrats would not be struggling for campaign money.
The real danger to America is the fascist Koch Brothers who are spending multiple millions to fund the tea party wingnuts to fund the very destructive A.L.E.C. in 50 states (mostly voter suppression), re-segregate schools, and legalizing your friendly neighborhood fracking pollutors.
9. Privatization is fascism, period.

G.E. Nordell
Belen