This is democracy
I graduated with a degree in politics, not making me a preacher on what is right and what we need, just faintly more aware of what is wrong. I am truly an independent. I see this country as not red and blue, but as a bipartisan, biracial and bicultural community, and that all its success is based on the cooperation of all its citizens working together to progress ... together.
As for this election, I am not happy or content on where we are today. I am proud of all the progress that we the people have achieved, and continue to achieve and grow, with this global financial crisis.
Our rebound has been slow, too slow, but Europe, Asia and the rest of the world are still struggling with a economic crisis that we are currently rebounding from, far better than all of them.
I understand the difficulties that the current president came to hs first term with and understand the gains that he has achieved, but also understand the failures that we continue to endure. There are many policies, taxes and culture that hinder our progress. These policies, taxes, and culture that both parties refuse to cooperate on, are hindering our rebound with this recession.
What we overlook is that the president is not a dictator. The representatives, senators and local politicians who we elect truly dictate our future and the future that will dictate the lives of our children.
The vote that matters next month starts with those politicians at the lower level, mid level and the Senate and House of Representatives. More importantly, vote for the politicians who support what you think the government should represent, promote and fund, on every level. Promote what you believe. Stop criticizing what others believe.
That is democracy.
Layman for commissioner
When I first met Jeff some years ago we were on opposite sides of several issues that were pretty important to Eagle-Vail's future. We were both very convinced we were right and at the outset I wasn't sure we'd ever see eye to eye.
I was wrong. Jeff Layman is a guy who is passionate about his beliefs while having a very open mind to his opposition. We worked through our differences with respect and civility for each other's positions.
I now call Jeff a friend and I have the utmost respect for his willingness and capability to tackle complex issues, listen to all sides and make fair and reasonable decisions. I think Jeff Layman will make a great County Commissioner.
Jeff, you've got my vote.
There are many reasons why I will vote to re-elect President Obama. However before iterating those, I would like to thank Mr. Rogers and his staff for providing all of us with the opportunity to speak our piece. It is indeed the essence of democracy!
I am certain that the president truly understands the problems of of our vast middle class and also of those who are unfortunate enough to be living in poverty. He was born middle class, he went to public schools, he worked in Chicago to assist those who were living in poverty, and he went to college with the help of a student loan. There can be no doubt that he will continue his efforts toward providing job opportunities and better lives for the vast majority of our citizens.
He well understands both the needs and the nuances of foreign policies! He ended our war in Iraq and is winding down another in Afghanistan. And while there are those who would argue for a different time table regarding the latter, he is intent on striking a balance that does not negate the lives that have been lost and the billions of dollars that have been spent. He has been supportive of the uprisings in the Middle East without bringing us yet another war. And he has been largely responsible for the sanctions against Iran. Those now show real promise of success and would avoid an absolutely horrendous armed conflict.
He has in fact turned around the economy that he inherited. Please remember that we lost more than 5 million jobs during the last year of Mr. Bush's presidency and that an immediate reversal of that situation was impossible.
I do believe that President Obama was overly optimistic when he failed to accurately assess the time that it would take to turn the situation around. However, I also believe that the creation of 5 million jobs during the last 24 months has been exemplary and that we're on our way.
He understands and accepts the data proving that free contraception dramatically reduces teenage pregnancies. The kids get to complete their high school education, and our society is not burdened by unwanted children, those who are most likely to become high school drop-outs, gang members, and future criminals.
He firmly understands and believes in the separation of church and state as iterated in our Constitution. And so he will continue to support legislation that enhances women's health, as well as the choices that they have been assured by Roe v. Wade.
With the help of our military leaders, he successfully ended "don't ask, don't tell," and he will continue to support equal rights for all of our citizens.
He understands that the future of our entire nation depends on having well educated citizens. So he will not reduce academic, nor will he cut back on student loans and scholarships. He also understands that education must be a national commitment and should not be left to States and communities -- both rich and poor -- to do their best.
He understands that the health of our citizens is also a national issue and so he will not abandon his efforts to achieve proper health care for all of us. There is no rationale for passing the buck and allowing the residents of any state or community to receive anything less. Furthermore, he will not abandon the efforts to reduce the associated costs.
He understands that our Social Security program needs to be tweaked and not overhauled or abandoned. Even if we do nothing at all, it will remain solvent until 2033. However, adjusting it now would be prudent. And so, with a little bit of cooperation from our Congress, he would approve a reasonable solution to the problem.
And finally, a great many of us were both pleased and proud when we elected a black man to be our president. I believe that he has done extremely well in the job and I will once again be pleased and proud to vote for him.
David Le Vine
Town Board ruins Eagle
I am completely exasperated. Shame on me, I had more faith in the Eagle Town Board than was deserved.
In light of recent events, I believed that surely the people on this board had more than their special interests at heart because they must, since they serve on the Town Board and because they love Eagle. Right?
That idea has been beaten and smashed since I found out that, once again, the Town Board has betrayed Eagle by voting 5-2 (only Brandi Resa and Joe Knabel voted against) to approve the Haymeadow development that is going up Brush Creek Road by the ice rink. The approval will allow for the development of 809 housing units.
In addition to the recently debated approval of Eagle River Station, which approved approximately 500 homes, this approval will add an additional 1,300 homes to Eagle.
That will more than double the size of Eagle!
But at least we can thank the Town Board for scaling it back from its original 979 units!
Although the developer has "graciously" allowed for 60 percent of the development to be labeled as open space, it will still have a detrimental impact on the deer and elk populations, as this area is one of their primary wintering grounds.
Eagle has a reputation for being a hunting destination, and with the approval of Haymeadow, this revenue will be lost (along with the lost revenue from Gypsum-Costco profit sharing that occurred with the approval of Eagle River Station; once again, thank you, Eagle Town Board).
Eagle will become a half-built town with foreclosure signs in 50 percent of the yards.
Do I have to mention that commerce is limited in this valley, so where will these people work? And as everyone who leaves Eagle at 7:30 a.m. knows, how are these additional 1,600 cars going to get onto Highway 6 and then the interstate? Hmmmm.
The recent decisions by the Eagle Town Board will ruin Eagle. People move to Eagle because there are unlimited access points to national forest and BLM land, and it is a rural, family-friendly community.
When the town doubles in size and developments go into these areas, suddenly these homeowners don't want those access points in their backyard. Then the appeal of living in a rural, active community is curtailed since the access points don't exist anymore.
How many locals do you know in Eagle? Yes, they are relics. Most of Eagle is East Coasters moving here to destroy it by turning it into wherever they came from. Including our Town Board.
I am disheartened with national politics, but to feel this way about my own town is just too depressing. I love Eagle. I am sad that it is being destroyed, much like our country, by greed and special interests.
P.S.: Brandi Resa and Joe Knabel, you are exempt from the above rant. Thank you for your service.