Washington is incomprehensible

The June 3 article, "Republicans going after Holder," corroborates that Washington's activities are beyond comprehension.

They're now wasting even more time crucifying Eric Holder. The Republicans have spent more than four years pursuing their prime objective to assure President Obama fails completely. And they appear comfortable contributing to America's downfall while ignoring the people's will.

The Democrats are equally liable. I have no faith in either party, but what the Republicans (and a number of Democrats) are failing to do is unconscionable.

This isn't to diminish the seriousness of these recent breaches of trust. It is critical they be addressed. But it doesn't appear to bother these politicians that the country is completely fed up with this endless gridlock, extreme partisanship and steadily worsening conditions.

There are very clear instructions in the Declaration of Independence regarding a government that no longer represents the citizens. Despite Obama's shortcomings, he's proposed worthwhile bills that have been stonewalled or butchered before passing.

Also, the country is vehemently divided on unresolvable social issues, diverting attention from self-inflicted serious problems the country is drowning in.

Nick Jury


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Clayton

Questions about climate change

Donald F. Anthrop, in his June 2 guest commentary, "Uncertainties about climate change many, varied," questions the notion that "average global temperatures should approximately track rising carbon dioxide levels."

Does the word "levels" refer to emissions or to atmospheric concentrations? The distinction is important because high carbon dioxide emissions cause a prolonged increase in the atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide.

Anthrop notes that annual carbon dioxide emissions increased by 33 percent over the last 11 years. Those emissions, added to emissions from previous decades, caused an increase of 6 percent, not 33 percent, in the atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide over that time span (from 371 to 394 parts per million; Google "Mauna Loa carbon dioxide" for data).

A question for the reader: Should we expect a significant increase in global air temperature in 2013 due to a 6 percent increase in the atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide from 2001 to 2012? It's a difficult question due to other causes of temperature variations, and the possibility of a time lag between an increase in atmospheric concentration and an increase in temperature. Throwing on an extra blanket in the middle of the night does not immediately make you warm.

Mark J. Meldgin

Albany

Search for vaccine is an eye-opener

My husband and I found out late on May 31 about the danger of having consumed frozen berries purchased from Costco.

The article warned that we should be vaccinated for hepatitis A within 14 days of consuming the fruit. Saturday, June 1 was day 13.

We spent hours on the phone with various offices at John Muir Medical Group; no one would help. Everyone said we had to wait until Monday and see our primary care physician to get a referral for the vaccine.

In desperation, we went to urgent care but were rejected as we didn't have symptoms; besides, they didn't have the vaccine. Urgent care told us to go to the emergency room.

Earlier, we had spoken to someone at John Muir Hospital in Concord who verified they had the vaccine, so we went there. Imagine our shock when we discovered the hospital didn't have the vaccine.

We ended up paying for the vaccine at Walgreen's.

It was discouraging to find out the medical community was totally unprepared to deal with the issue and didn't even seem to care.

Cheryl Hale

Concord