mailbag: letters from readers

June 25th, 2015 8:16 am

First Posted: 3/20/2013

Our attitude isn’t bad; it’s our land and water

In response to Fred Murray of Shavertown bemoaning the attitude of the local residents toward his Marcellus Shale bonanza, I can understand your excitement of being “like a kid with a new toy.” You signed your lease and spent four whole hours in the office of XTD in Forty Fort being spoon-fed the Fort Worth pie-in-the-sky attitude. You just can’t understand what’s wrong with us local yokels that we aren’t celebrating your good fortune. We’re just a bunch of critics, pessimists, and downers. After all, you’re in such desperate financial need.

Maybe you would better understand that “local attitude” if you left your beautiful yuppie Back Mountain and came over for a visit to my house here in the Valley. We could sit on my front porch and admire the beautiful mountain of culm that towers over my neighborhood and spreads over a square mile at it’s base.

We could take a drive to Ashley or Swoyersville to admire some of the other remaining mountains of destruction left by the previous robber barons of the coal industry who signed their leases, made their millions and left us sitting here a hundred years later still holding the bag for their “good fortune.” We could go up to Pittston and admire the streams and the North Branch of the Susquehanna where the water flows a golden brown and leaves a permanent orange stain on anything it touches. We won’t have to worry about the fish being stained however, there are no fish that can live in that “water.”

Then we could stop by the Butler Tunnel for a night cap. I’d be happy to ladle out a big gulp of the “pristine” Susquehanna for you to sip while we relax on it’s golden malodorous shore under the Knox Mine disaster memorial.

You see, Fred, we’ve been down this road before. Please don’t belittle us for not wanting to have our air and land destroyed again in the name of a fast buck. Fred, it’s not so much that the Middle Ages are alive and well in Pennsylvania as much as we don’t want to live through the Middle Ages and it’s wanton destruction again. We’d like to move on to a better, cleaner tomorrow in the current age.

Those who are ignorant of their history are doomed to relive it. If you want to relive that terrible time, Fred, go ahead, but don’t drag us along with you and don’t insult and belittle us for not wanting better for ourselves and children.

Tom Gunshannon Larksville

Nuclear arms control and civilian components

In a world where the threat of North Korea is becoming so obvious that even China is agreeing with us to sanction the regime, we must ask ourselves how come the rest of the world is still not as aggressively concerned with a rising Iran. Capabilities in both of these anti-western regimes are picking up speed. Some may remember Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on the floor of the United Nations imploring action as Iran was crossing a threshold for a nuclear warhead. Having a nuclear warhead for protection is one thing, but the regimes of Iran and North Korea have threatened to use their capacity for destruction of the US, Israel, and others time and time again.

What we face is more than a nuclear threat, but a lack of action in non-proliferation work in the world.

I believe it’s because of a lack of urgency is prevalent among nations and people. The media is explaining the threats of these nations, but not at the level of urgency raised in the 1980s. l think what needs to coincide with that reporting is something constructive: how students can study nonproliferation work and how adults can get involved in many ways, especially through a great deal of collective conversation with our elected representatives.

We need to continue a global discussion on nuclear arms control in the same intensity as during the 1980s. In reality, if a war or attack were to stop North Korea or Iran, it would not stop the threat of nuclear weapons in the world altogether.

Diplomacy is key, and that goes beyond a simple yes or no vote from our elected leaders.

It takes leadership and courage.

Richard “M.J.” Maopolski

Old Forge

Flawed education system and voter ID hogwash

Conservatives are now in the minority and are faced with future election defeats as a direct result of the direction taken by public education decades ago. Educators have taken their lead from the socialist playbook and have started at the highest level filling minds of mush with social drivel which in time filtered down through the secondary and primary levels. In graduating millions with a like mindset their indoctrination achieved success beyond their wildest dreams but not without paying a big price — quality education.

Their proudest success, currently presiding at the White House (and) dissatisfied with the progress of the dominance, proposed upping the ante by adding three and four-year olds to pre-school. The end result in addition to mind control will mean additional funds from already strapped taxpayers for baby sitting.

Regarding voting for minorities and voter IDs, the latter brings howls from the Democrats. Their major objection is that it will deny voting privileges is hogwash. Their real fear is one vote per person. It’s implementation would have prevented another of their successes in Ohio from voting multiple times last November. The unrepentant women when charged with fraud proudly boasted she would have voted more times if possible to re-elect Obama.

An isolated case? You be the judge.

Dan Colgan


Tunkhannock has it all for this satisfied couple

We recently attended the annual wine and beer tasting event at the Tunkhannock Library. We can’t compliment all the folks involved enough for an outstanding performance. We are sure all who attended had an enjoyable evening.

That event caused us to reflect on our community and how fortunate we are to have such wonderful and charitable citizens.

Tunkhannock has it all: an outstanding library, fire department, ambulance system, hospital, theater, shopping district, restaurants (several), school system, service clubs, churches, etc., etc. We have so many recreational opportunities -- a beautiful river (that at times gets out of God’s hands) streams, trails, many lakes, parks and so many wonderful views of valleys and mountains. And who puts this all together? All the kind, caring and charitable citizens.

We are often asked: are you planning on retiring south or somewhere? Our immediate response is, why leave such a wonderful town, filled with so many amenities and nice charitable and friendly folks? The only things we miss are our four children and spouses and six grandchildren not being here to enjoy Tunkhannock with us.

Harry and Dorothy Sharpe