Thanks to the lab for reducing plutonium dust
This summer, the Livermore Lab built a pipeline going west through neighborhoods to Big Trees Park. There, a pumping station is intended to take polluted water out of the aquifer, put it in the pipeline and return it to the lab for cleanup.
The land along this route had been contaminated with plutonium. Disturbing this soil could have transmitted excess radiation to the residents. Therefore, about 150 neighbors and Tri-Valley CAREs asked the lab for wind, dust and radioactivity monitoring. The lab agreed to wind and dust monitoring. So we community members used a Radalert 50 to monitor radioactivity.
We monitored the pipeline construction every day. On the first day, we saw excessive dust and reported it. Lab officials had a special meeting with the construction crew. The result was that the wind and dust monitors were drawn in closer to the work area. Further, extra care was taken not to kick up plutonium-contaminated dust.
We in the community appreciate the care that the lab and crew took to minimize dust to protect our health. Thanks!
Various claims about Obama are ridiculous
Hello Friends at Contra Costa Newspapers. As I read the Saturday Forum (Nov. 10), I see two anti-Obama letters, one saying those in favor of Obama are "ignorant and irrational, believing in 'government as Santa Claus,' and another saying, "Obama is an Alinsky Democrat, with an agenda to destroy America."
These are almost direct quotes from the mouth of Rush Limbaugh. This is the typical paranoia and hyperbole that characterize the daily nine hours of right-wing talk radio we get from Limbaugh, Hannity, Beck, Sussman, etc., along with the additional nonsense that Obama is a foreign-born, radical leftist, socialist, Muslim sympathizer. Given the state of the economy and the disarray in our government, I am surprised that Obama was re-elected, but it's clear that most Americans will not vote for a party who promotes obvious nonsense and whose ideas and thinking are still in the past.
After Republicans won big in only the old Confederate states (the Deep South and the surrounding states), I don't think we need to debate who is "ignorant and irrational."
Can no longer abide Scouts' anti-gay stance
Here is an excerpt from a letter I sent to the Boy Scouts of America:
"I am returning the Eagle award given me many years ago by the Boy Scouts of America. While I am still proud of the personal achievements I made during my scouting experience I am shamed by the prejudicial policies of the organization that presented the award to me.
"At a time in America's history when organizations and individuals are striving toward equality for all peoples without regard to ethnicity, sexual orientation or religious beliefs, the Boy Scouts of America continues to believe that individuals who do not prescribe to their particular beliefs are in the wrong and should be ostracized. I can't help but think of the acquaintances I've made during my lifetime and how our valued friendships would have been impossible had I followed the doctrines of the organization whose foundation is supposedly based on character building. It is time for the Boy Scouts of America to replace their antiquated prejudicial policies for those that recognize everyone equally."
Borenstein column raises questions
I have two problems with Mr. Borenstein's Nov. 11 column stating: "the majority of candidates had no understanding of what an unfunded liability was, and few understood the implications."
First, why didn't you tell us this before the elections? And second, what evidence did you have that President Obama has any better understanding of these issues before you endorsed him? I agree with you when you said: "elected officials can't begin to solve a problem until they understand it, and most don't."
'Super seniors' fee hike would be punitive
The CSU proposes increasing tuition for some students. Ironically, one of these tuition hikes is an "incentive fee" for "super seniors," yet it lacks incentive and is punitive -- pay more or drop out.
Trustees falsely state this won't affect existing students. However, for many, it's impossible to complete required degree coursework before the fall 2013 implementation. Having units and completing requirements is not the same thing. There is no graduation without the latter.
This fee offers no solution, just extortion. Instead, CSU should address issues that have created super-seniors: advising, departmental requirements and class availability. For current super-seniors CSU should offer an incentive of waiving this fee for required coursework only, as long as students have an approved graduation plan on file with their major department and adhere to it. Require students to have this plan approved and on file before the fall 2013 semester to qualify for this break. As is, the proposal is retaliatory. Don't further penalize those who sincerely want to graduate and are working diligently toward their degree.
Letter writer's ignorance was a tour de force
The recent letters to the editor on the outcome of the election provided a humorous way to start the day.
Mr. Greer and Mr. Morris intoned that the outcome was due to the ignorance of the electorate. They, on the other hand, have access to the all-knowing truth. What a delicious irony that their views were shared on the very same page by Mr. Crook's tour de force of ignorance that the president plans to hand the country over to the United Nations.
Enjoy the high from election while it lasts
President Obama ran a superior campaign. His election proves that more than half of Americans are receptive to big government paternalism and class envy.
Romney supporters expected nothing but to allay the specter of rampant inflation caused by debt, and pond scum and sunshine energy policy. The irony is that the jubilant Obama supporters, at least the ones most receptive to his pandering, will be the hardest hit by the consequences of debt and employer and investor risk.
But for now you get to bask in the chimera that you will receive ... name it ... tuition, cell phones, contraceptives and abortions, green jobs, muppets, open borders, 100,000 math teachers ... insert your goody here. What you will actually receive is four more years of excuses, inflation and rapidly diminishing opportunities in an increasingly dangerous world. On a positive note, Gaga, The Boss and Babs have financial planners to avoid all those new billionaire taxes.
Republicans have become a doomed party
Back in the 1950s the cartoon character Pogo stated that "we have met the enemy, and he is us." Until the Republican Party takes this to heart and understands that demonizing the new reality of America is counterproductive, they have little hope for the future.