Letters to the editor (06/27/12)

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Elections should be about we, the people
Editor:
My cousin, Barbara Munsey and her husband, Roger, live in Okeechobee, Fla. (Okeechobee — isn’t that a great word.)
Recently, Barb sent me two letters that she sent to her editor of their local paper, Okeechobee News.
Here’s the first one, written more than four years ago in May 2008. See what you think.
“We, the people, would like to see all election activity begin no earlier than six months prior to November of an election year, with all primary voting being held three months prior to the election date.
“We, the people, would like a forum for each candidate to state what each on of them propose to do for the people if elected and to state their qualifications.
“We, the people, would like no sneers made by any candidate of another.
“We, the people, demand that our individual votes be counted to elect our president by popular vote and not interpreted or changed in any way, shape or form by any delegate or super delegate.
“And finally, we, the people, respectfully remind the person elected that they were voted into office to listen and uphold the voice of all the people and not just the chosen few.
“May God bless and help America.”

Nancy Faust
Belen

Health care company has enough people
Editor:
Many residents of Valencia County are unaware that the Presbyterian Urgent Care clinic in Belen is only open weekdays, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.
It has not been open on weekends for many months. It appears Presbyterian’s explanation is that there is a lack of personnel to staff the clinic.
Meanwhile, Presbyterian has a nice new hospital in Rio Rancho, the Rust Medical Center. Presbyterian highlights this facility on its website and elsewhere.
On one of its web pages for the new Rio Rancho hospital, Presbyterian states “We have more than 400 permanent employees, with a $50 million annual payroll.”
To be sure, many of those 400 employees are not doctors and nurses. But I would bet a good number of them are!
Presbyterian has essentially decided that Valencia County is not worth much attention while it invests heavily in Rio Rancho.
Moral of the story: if you need urgent care services, make sure it’s not on a weekend or you will have to trek to Albuquerque and probably have to endure a significant wait in an emergency room.

James Rickey
Los Lunas

Raising wages is what is needed
Editor:
There have been several guest articles about fixing the financial troubles of the post office.
Neither article mentions the real problem, which is the fact the 2006 lame duck Republican Congress passed a bill that required the post office to set aside $5.6 billion every year for 10 years to fund health and retirement benefits for postal employees.
This $56 billion fund is enough money to adequately fund the post office retirement for the next 75 years.
I’d like to have U.S. Rep. Steven Pearce name five private corporations that have a 75 year retirement fund for its employees who are not yet born as he voted for that 2006 bill.
The post office is established in Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution:  To establish post offices and post roads. And no the post office does not receive any of our taxpayer dollars.
Since the post office has now contributed six years of $5.6 billion and has a retirement fund of $34 billion, which is an adequate amount of the funds for its employee’s retirement, Congress needs to overturn the 2006 laws to relieve the post office of this onerous financial obligation.
I quite frankly don’t want to lose my Saturday mail delivery (the News-Bulletin would have to move up to Friday or back to Monday for its publication date) and I don’t want my mail taking one or two days longer or small post offices to be forced to close, i.e., Tomé, which is the center of their communities.
The post office is the second largest employer in the United States after Walmart, and since it’s unionized, I’m not watching my tax dollars being used to make up for inadequate wages and benefits as with Walmart employees.
Not only does the post office pay livable wages and benefits, a high percentage of its employees are veterans, giving them a good paying job upon their return from service.
I guess what really bothers me is that the 10 percent own 90 percent of the wealth in this country and they own the media and have us fight amongst ourselves for the crumbs.
The guest editorialist Reed Anfinson suggests that the postal workers’ wages be reduced in be “line with the private sector.”
From my point of view, raising the wages of the private sector to at least minimum of those of the post office employees would get the economy moving.

Ward B. McCartney
Belen

It’s time to live life, not complain
Editor:
Soon be another year older … rather naturally I think because the process of aging, and going to the “end” begins immediately after birth.
I am not suggesting that we decide to stop or delay the journey, even to extend it like hoping to “live to a 100.”
But, I was just thinking about doing a little more with my time.
I just want to stop the daily routine to celebrate a little: take more walks with my bride (a wonderful partner of almost 30 years), remember to hug our grown-up kids often, take our dogs to a run-run place, and occasionally fly airplanes with generous friends.
Some I know go to Walmart to see folks, talk about their latest grandchild, and there are others I visit in the restaurants in our town.
I suppose I don’t do that often enough, either.
There are those who have passed on and aren’t here to fuss about “missing” those kind of celebrations. I think  maybe they can see us still walking ‘round, and even think we’re selfish for not doing more of that sort of celebrating.
Well, I’m going to try to forget that latest twinge in my shoulder, the pills I must take, and the other irritants, or at least put them away for another time and place.
I believe writing this “out-loud” thinking is a help … I’m going to promise to be better at celebrating; maybe some of you can join me here, rather than yonder!

F. Guy Glover
Los Lunas

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