Letters to the editor | VailDaily.com

Letters to the editor


Beauty as an

economic indicator

Beauty is expensive no matter what anyone says about the best things in life being free.

Standing at the top of Riva contemplating first tracks on a perfect Colorado morning – it cost something to be there, no matter who you are. Ask the guy who married the UCLA homecoming queen and promptly had four beautiful kids. It ain’t cheap! And Miss America seldom seems to marry into the blue collar working class.

Thus it’s reasonable to conclude that beauty has value.

Here, the reader pauses to contemplate the author’s firm grasp of the obvious. But then, is it so obvious?

Does anyone doubt that Vail came to exist in large part due to its beauty? Does anyone think, for example, that destination visitors travel 4,000 miles to ask “Who is John Galt?”? Or that buyers of seven-figure homes buy based on how frequently Riva is rolled? It does seem obvious that beauty played a hugely significant role in the rise of Vail? And, that beauty has economic value?

If one were to take all the research done by the business community (no doubt, mostly VR’s), and looked at each desired demographic, pre and post, somewhere near the top of motivating attributes would be “beauty” and “peacefulness,” or a close synonym. Somewhere in almost every verbatim those motivations would appear as part of the purchase decision to come to Vail, to buy in Vail or to come back to Vail.

While everyone, once the subject is broached, launches into fervid protestation about their commitment to the preservation of the valley’s beauty, the things we seem to be actually celebrating are simply “more.”

Add 10 feet of cement to solve the current parking issue cleverly. Does anyone wonder about the effect of that on our most immediate marketing audience? Who are they? How about those thousands of passers-by and the universe they talk to: the I-70 audience? What will be the effect on the impressions of those untold millions by this minute addition of ugliness? How many pennies per customer will that add to my marketing cost?

Well we got our conference center. Now, looking at Dobson, the parking structures and the municipal buildings in TOV – will the center add or detract from the beauty of Vail? Its truly amazing how penurious politicians fall so deeply in love with cement so quickly.

We’ve got remodels coming, new hotels, condos and some 2,400 new homes in Avon.

I have two questions for our business scions: First, what is so unique about a suburb with a ski slope? Second, whether you be Adam Aron or a sandwich shop operator in West Vail, how much will each of these “improvements” cost you in customer acquisition-retention costs as the native beauty of the valley is subsumed in asphalt?

Perhaps the business community is occupied by the rude practicalities of life, namely making a living. Perhaps the only solution to the current economic difficulties really is “more.” But, just perhaps, the golden goose is molting while no one is watching.

Jim Dorsey

Mazzuca right on-

I just read the second chapter of Mr. Dorsey’s book, which should be titled “Holier Than Thou.” It seems Mr. Dorsey will not let up on the “guilt by association” premise he claims Mr. Mazzuca used in his “Hillary Scares Me” commentary.

It’s not all that complicated. Bill Clinton was guilty of misprison and Hillary of negative misprison.

In its simplest terms, negative misprison means the concealment of something, which ought to be revealed. This differs from misprison (a misdemeanor), which does not possess a specific name (United States v. Perlstein.) More properly the term misprison denotes contempt against the sovereign, (We the People?) the government, or the courts of justice, including contempt of court.

But let’s distill the legalese into terms that Mr. Dorsey can understand.- Officers of the United States at any level who do not investigate crimes in progress or arrest the criminals may be guilty of misprison of felony.- Citizens who do not report their knowledge of a crime or a crime in progress may be guilty of a negative misprison.

Mr. Mazzuca’s commentary was correct. Hillary IS guilty of negative misprison.

I guess this will elicit a third chapter from Mr. Dorsey.-

B.T. Stephans


He was wrong!

Mike Cacioppo, our “watchdog,” the “common sense conservative,” the one who calls himself a “fair guy” and deems it “important to keep one’s word,” the one who holds himself out to the public as a professional publisher of a local newspaper, seems to have no qualms about twisting the opinions of other individuals.

After the District Court’s ruling, in mid-April in favor of the Eagle County School District, I sent a lengthy (almost 1,200 words) letter to the editor to the three local newspapers.

The Vail Daily was kind enough to print it, in its entirety, the first weekend of May. About 1,000 of those words addressed, in the form of questions, the issue of Cacioppo seeking a monetary settlement from the school district. The last two paragraphs of my letter, around 150 words, were a sarcastic summation of what Cacioppo claims to be pursuing despite the growing evidence, i.e., his own words and actions, to the contrary.

In the June 13 issue of Speakout! an edited version of this original letter was printed. Cacioppo, citing the convenient disclaimer, “It has been edited for space and context …” had reduced my letter to less than 260 words. He was correct about the “edited for context” issue, but seemed to forget about his “space” concerns. He found enough room in his paper to add almost 350 words of his own to my letter.

He abridges my lengthy original list of questions to 150 words or so in my “new letter.” Quite an editorial accomplishment – chopping over 1,000 words down to about 150. It definitely had an impact on the context of my original letter. But, hey, he noted at the beginning that it was “edited for space and context, ” so I guess he can do that. After all, in his own words, he’s a “fair guy.”

Cacioppo apparently exerted all of that editorial effort and talent so he would have enough room to print my second-to-last paragraph, out of context, word for word. In fact, he had enough room in his paper to print it twice. He even thanks me in print, “You made my off-season!”

Context: “The parts directly before and after a word, sentence, etc., that influence its meaning: You may often mistake the meaning of a word unless you read it in its context.” (World Book Dictionary)

Near the end of May, after Cacioppo presented the school district with a list of demands, most of which focused on the payment of money to him, that had to be met to his satisfaction or he would pursue an appeal of the above mentioned case, I sent another lengthy letter to the editors of the Vail Daily and the Vail Trail. I again addressed what seems to be Cacioppo’s message to the school district: Give me money and I’ll go away, or expect to wait a long, long time to pay your teachers.

The Vail Daily was kind enough to publish this second letter, in its entirety, on June 14. I now held the distinction, thanks to Cacioppo’s editorial skills, of having two letters to the editor published in two different publications, on two successive days, presenting two totally opposite opinions on the same subject. One more face and I could be Eve.

The fun continues. In a letter to the editor to the Vail Daily, published June 20, Cacioppo continues his ruse about “my support” for him and cites, in print for the third time, my calling him a “bright shining light.” But now he asserts I had “changed my tune” in my June 13 letter because my wife was “irritated.”

If Cacioppo really had thought I supported him, he would have printed my complete letter. Instead he was very careful to delete the parts incriminating him of what he really wants – money to go away. This is how he displays his respect for his profession and the power of the press.

Maybe Cacioppo didn’t get the sarcasm in my first letter. But, come on, no one can say “dastardly connivers” and keep a straight face.

Maybe Cacioppo didn’t think that I would send my first letter to the other newspapers. Maybe he didn’t know that my original first letter was already of public record. Maybe he just thought I had up and died and couldn’t respond to his latest fairy tale.

I didn’t “change my tune” in my second letter, and Cacioppo knows it. Maybe he can’t figure out how to deny what he really wants – money to go away – so he’s trying to discredit me. Cacioppo’s problems, though, are his own actions and words, over the past several months, not my taking note of them.

These actions reflect on the character of the person currently holding our school district, and us, at bay. I’m not so sure that Rosa Parks would like being cited as his inspiration.

Joe Peplinski

Support Local Journalism