Charles Kocher, Pilot staff writer

Is this the president we want in office?


July 2, 2008, in Colorado Springs, Colo., candidate Obama said: "We can no longer continue to rely on the military in order to achieve the national security objectives that we've set. We've gotta have a civilian national security force that is just as powerful, just as strong, just as well funded as our military." Yet now his administration sues states which pursue their own protection of our boarders.

March 2012, President Obama signed an Executive Order (bypassing Congress) that provides him and future presidents the power to control the U.S. economy in times of peace and crisis. The Order, National Defense Resources Preparedness (NDRP), amends the Defense Production Act of 1950 and is an alleged "update" of a 1994 President Clinton Executive Order (bypassing Congress). The president has given himself extraordinary powers.

The central purpose of the order, "Policy articulated in Sec. 102" is: "The United States must have an industrial and technological base capable of meeting national defense requirements and capable of contributing to the technological superiority of its national defense equipment in peacetime and in times of national emergency."

This gives a president control over all private industry (including farming) and technology in America, in times of peace when he perceives a national threat. Is this the president we want to continue in the White House?

Laurie Reynolds


Blodgett is my choice for commissioner


Many years ago, several friends (including Leroy Blodgett) sat down at a table together and the conversation turned to what we all did in our early careers.

Leroy began to share how he began right out of high school purchasing his own auto salvage business. He talked about how he came to be involved in the challenges of economic disasters he witnessed in small communities such as Brookings. His career took another change and in 1987 he began a new career in city management.

It was very evident to me that Leroy is a self-made man. He is not boastful about his accomplishments; he just sees what needs to be done and uses his talents to bring it to fruition.

Like many of us, I don't care for dirty politics. I feel that there is no need for character bashing to get others to vote for your candidate choice. I was taught as a child "do not judge others until you have walked a mile in their shoes."

Each of the candidates running for Curry County commissioner has some great qualities they can bring to the table if chosen. You need to decide who you feel would best serve the interest of Curry County.

Over the years both Leroy and his wife, Dori, have consistently given their time and talent for many great causes that benefit our community and the county. My choice for Curry County commissioner will be Leroy Blodgett.

Jan Fox


DeFazio is not a pretender


I must take issue with Mr. Stewart's defense of Matthew Robinson's attempt to deceive Oregon voters in the Democratic primary. Of course, Mr. Stewart has every right to disagree with mainstream Democratic positions andndash; this is not what concerns me.

For example, I proudly declare my belief that the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy were flat wrong, especially while that administration incurred trillions of dollars in budget-busting debt to fight two wars. I also proudly declare my belief that affordable and essential health care for all citizens is a worthy goal for any civilized society. You may disagree with these beliefs, but I openly and honestly assert them andndash; and yes, they are shared by most true Democrats. These are my honest beliefs. I make no attempt to deceive nor do I apologize for them. If in Mr. Stewart's view this makes me some kind of tax-and-spend socialist, well, he has a right to that opinion. That's what freedom of speech in a democratic republic is all about.

Matthew Robinson, however, has been an open and ardent Republican supporter of his father's campaigns and is being plainly deceptive and dishonest when he runs as a Democrat. In fact, he's perpetrating an outright sabotage of the electoral process to benefit his father's bizarre political agenda. How pro-America, pro-Constitution can he be if he seeks to violate one of our most sacred rights andndash; the right to an honest election?

Vote for Peter DeFazio andndash; he's not pretending to be someone he isn't.

Richard Carey


Help us find solutions to common problems


I'd like to thank the Brookings Tea Party for holding such valuable meetings as those held these past few months.

They have helped me understand better many of the challenges we are facing here in Curry County. This past Saturday, the party invited Matthew Robinson to speak. He is running against Congressman Peter DeFazio for the 4th Congressional District. I decided to attend and was looking forward to learning how Mr. Robinson would justify, as a Republican, changing his affiliation in order to run in the Democratic Primary against Congressman DeFazio. Much to my surprise he had a pretty good response, in that, he suggested if you looked back at the early 1932 platforms for the Democrats, those platforms are more aligned with the current Republican platforms than the progressive platforms being put forward by the modern Democrats of today.

This response reminded me of my parents, who were Democrats, (when they) commented they didn't recognize their party, with its current progressive agenda.

If they were alive today, I would invite them to attend one of these meetings, where they would find common ground with their fellow citizens who have similar concerns and values as they had expressed through most of their later years. I would also suggest to them that we need to set aside these old government parties and join together as concerned citizens to bring our country back and to make the hard choices required to solve the challenges our country is facing.

I was surprised at the diversity among those meeting together as it appeared just about every political philosophy was represented and, in fact, about every age group as well was represented with the addition of two fine young men, just out of high school, who shared their concerns.

I extend an invitation to any member of our community, regardless of party affiliation, who would like to join us on Saturday, May19, to help us find solutions to our common challenges in Curry County.

Terry Griffith


Happy with where we are going?


I am on record as proclaiming, back in 2008, that if Obama gets elected, America will become an Obama nation.

As the whole world is aware, Obama did get elected, and andndash; well? What do you see?

Now, I know that far too many Americans are not mentally tall enough to see the reality, and if you're not unhappy with the way our country (and our very way of life) is heading, then go ahead and vote for him again. After all, the alternative is not all that promising. What the heck, it can't last much longer anyway.

C.L. Grove


Short list of rules to be a Democrat


The following is a short list of rules one must follow to be a Democrat:

andbull;Rule 1 andndash; Forget morality; as a Democrat you must support infanticide and geriatric genocide (abortion and the death panels of Obamacare.)

andbull;Rule 2 andndash; Do not ever, ever discuss any Democrat's record in office. (Remember, some people may actually ask about unemployment, excessive debt, fraud and waste. This must be avoided!)

andbull;Rule 3 andndash; Ridicule is your most potent weapon. Do not debate real issues; make it personal. (Sarah Palin has funny glasses! Not, why is the debt so out of control? See?)

andbull;Rule 4 andndash; Create enemies. Play the poor against the rich, black against the white. (If there were more rich than poor we would play the rich against the poor. Get it?)

andbull;Rule 5 andndash; Make all events political. (Ted Kennedy's death, the tsunami in Japan, or even a dog carrier on a car's roof! Wow! That's rich!)

andbull;Rule 6 andndash; Create phony controversy and discontent. (This can lead to a nifty campaign slogan. Like "Hope and Change"! What a hoot!)

andbull;Rule 7 andndash; Lie, even when the truth can serve you better. (We must maintain consistency within the party.)

andbull;Rule 8 andndash; This is the most important rule for Democrats! There are no rules! (The ends justifies the means!)

For further clarification please read Saul Alinsky's book, "Rules for Radicals," the Democrat's bible.

Bob Ford


Keep DeFazio, a real Democrat, in office


Allan Stewart raises a good question in his April 25 letter to the editor.

He asks why Representative DeFazio won't debate "one or both of the Robinsons." To clarify, "the Robinsons" he's referring to are Art Robinson, DeFazio's Republican challenger in the November election, and Art's 24-year-old son Matthew.

Representative DeFazio is willing to debate the Robinsons, as outlined in his letter to Matthew ( G7sFj). Because both Matthew and DeFazio are running in the Democratic Primary, DeFazio has challenged Matthew to debate in a Democratic venue. Not surprisingly, Matthew refused this invitation.

As a Republican, Matthew actively campaigned for his father during Art Robinson's first attempt to unseat DeFazio in 2010. Then just last August Matthew registered as a Democrat and is now running against Congressman DeFazio in the May 15 primary. Matthew became a Democrat in name only with the sole purpose of challenging DeFazio on behalf of his father in the primary election, and not because he suddenly discovered a belief in Democratic principles.

Is Peter DeFazio a true Democrat? Definitely! He's been our Democratic Representative in the U.S. Congress for 26 years, fighting for all of us here in Curry County. Matthew Robinson, however, has been registered as a Democrat for less than nine months, and became a Democrat in name only.

Democrats: Vote for Peter DeFazio on May 15 and keep our real Democrat in office!

Linda Bozack


Elect Brown, she'll make a difference


I have never been too involved in politics, but this year is different.

I am telling the world to vote for Susan Brown for commissioner. It seems so long since we had commissioners we could trust to tell the truth, who debated, discussed and made all their decisions in public, and who actually encouraged, listened to, and respected public input.

I have known very few others who are as straight-up, straightforward, creative, intelligent, and hardworking as Susan Brown. It would be great if we could have two more commissioners like her to turn this place around.

I hope you will elect Susan Brown. She will make a difference.

Mary Gay

Gold Beach

Vote Blodgett for a better Curry County


I have known Leroy Blodgett for many years and I consider him a friend.

He is one of the hardest working, dedicated people I have ever met. Whenever there is a project to help someone or someone in need Leroy is always there to help.

Leroy truly loves our community and moved here to be a part of it.

He entered the race for Curry County commissioner because he believes his past vast experience working with governmental bodies and agencies will be an asset to helping guide our county out of the mess they are in.

Leroy is a leader and if you will take the time to look at his qualifications I believe you will understand that he will be a tremendous asset to the County Commission.

Please go to the State Election website or Leroy's website and look for yourself and you decide if he is not the person to be working on our behalf.

A vote for Leroy Blodgett is a vote for a better Curry County.

Bob Gilmore


Candidate Empson has the right idea


This letter is regarding the recent Curry County commissioner candidate forums which have been held in Port Orford, Gold Beach and Brookings.

The subjects discussed included sales and property taxes, bankruptcy, home rule charters, unions, alternative wind energy, grant writing and government job creation. The job creation topic is scary because government does not create jobs, other than government jobs. The "grants" topic is scary because most often, grants are issued by the government and most likely are borrowed money simply adding to the enormous federal deficit.

Greg Empson is the only candidate who has consistently presented the same fiscally responsible platform. He has not deviated from that position. He doesn't blame anyone from the past but rather identifies current large dollar items that are excessive by any standard.

He was quick to say the first order of business as commissioner would be to reduce his pay 50 percent.

His entire working career has been in the private sector. He does not appear intimidated by unions and is of the opinion private citizens have a place at the bargaining table as it is their money which is being negotiated.

Vote for Greg Empson, Curry County commissioner Position 3.

Thomas Huxley


Now is the time for Home Rule charter


A document already exists that would greatly improve the financial situation that exists in Curry County. That document would be the Curry County Home Rule Charter that was filed with the Curry County Clerk on July 18, 2008, and was placed on the November ballot.

It would have made the county commissioners a part-time position, cut their pay and benefits that today cost a salary of $60,768 per year, plus benefits, each, to expenses only, and created a county administrator. It would have created a five member Board of Commissioners giving one to Port Orford, one to Gold Beach, one to Brookings, and one to Harbor with a fifth member elected at large from the county.

This document was created using information from the Charters of all of the existing Charter Counties of Oregon by a group of people many of whom had masters' degrees, and edited by a lawyer that specializes in this type of document. It was and is a very professional document.

At the time in November 2008 it was placed on the ballot, money was flowing freely into Curry County from the Feds, the county commissioners and other elected officials and employees and their unions were rolling in money and came out fiercely in opposition spending large sums of money to oppose it. We campaigned it with our limited funds and ability but were no match for the high rolling opposition and the counties' newspapers who took an opposition position to curry favor with the county. You could understand the county commissioners and employees opposition as their taxpayer funded financial gravy train would have been in the hands of the taxpayers.

Ralph Martin

former member, Curry County Charter Committee


Could wanderer have been helped?


The ordeal of Charley Helmer reported in the Pilot (April 25) indicates a sad story of a man possibly with a mental disorder or developmental disability falling through the cracks in the system.

Here is another individual who may have benefited from the proposed Curry County Mental Health Court now placed on hold due to a lack of funding. Perhaps the Court could have ordered a mental health evaluation when he refused a lawyer to rule that he was not competent to represent himself.

To say he was seen wandering the streets may not have noted that he was walking to his destinations because he has no other means of transportation. I have seen him at the library, stores, and other locations.

Joe Willett


Review committee's other 18 suggestions


In view of our commissioners ideas on what to do to keep Curry County from bankruptcy (which was given many years of possible solutions), their insistence on a sales tax at this point is interesting, because they didn't know what to do about Curry County's fiscal problems.

I would ask what the other 18 suggestions were from the committee that the commissioners appointed. They (the commissioners) asked for help because they could not manage Curry County. We have not been informed as to the other l8 possibilities.

Isn't it time that the citizens of Curry County know what is going on in their county government? What are the other suggestions of the Curry County committee?

Let's have the other 18 suggestions sot we can decide what is best for Curry County.

Mim Lagoe


Brown is competent, effective, dedicated


I've worked with Susan Brown on numerous economic development activities while she was head of the Economic and Community Development Department. I found her to be a competent, effective, and hard working professional dedicated toward our overall economic well-being.

She has a great deal of support in our business community. Unfortunately, many of the programs she started while in her former position have not been continued since the present commissioners took over her department.

Susan initiated efforts to establish a Community Food Co-op in Port Orford while with the county. The City of Port Orford assumed responsibility for the USDA grants for the co-op after she left her position and made her Program Manager for the project with increased USDA funding. The Co-op is now well on its way toward becoming a reality. She supported our local Farmer's Market, initiated efforts toward establishing a USDA approved retail meat processing facility, participated in our Redfish Rocks Community Team, and supported our Main Street program. I recognized her as an Honorary Citizen of the City of Port Orford.

She is familiar with the workings of Curry County government and knows what needs to be done to improve things for the overall benefit of all. I support Susan Brown's candidacy for Curry County commissioner and urge you to join me in voting for her in the May primary and in the November election should that become necessary.

Jim Auborn, mayor

City of Port Orford

State capitalism is a given; work with it


If it looks and sounds like a duck, it's a duck.

Capitalism and the free market are long gone; state capitalism has been creeping up on America in a natural procession of seeking moderation from the extremes like an antidote to bipolar living, and just like those who relish those extremes and resist the Kool-Aid, it's more obviously over; the debate overlooks the reality that people are not comfortable with true freedom; they need control and security more than any individual rights.

Look at abortion or secular rights or gay rights or immigration and you'll see those who supposedly want the government out of people's life; well, not in those areas, not at all. Then maybe tell them no more permits involved in business or building homes or where all that should be located, and again, no is the answer, we need that stuff too. While we're at it, no more licenses for nothing, building or lawyers, or doctors, or driving, all gone! No, not that either. Then there's insurance, no requirements, no restrictions, you're on you own. No, not that one. The list could go on and on andndash; Wall Street, banks, police, military, etc. So we're knee-deep in denial.

Putting the genie back in the bottle is almost impossible. So state capitalism is a given; work with it.

The counties and states are in a bind; they are held in a none compete area of capitalism that needs change for instance, to become silent interest in business, like investors. Recently our federal government did just that in propping up businesses too big to fail, so counties have empirical evidence of rights to invest in local business. To provide a local stock market of shares with each county is what should happen, to promote and provide as needed, resources or assets on a ventured capital section of tax reform, working locally to sustain locally-needed improvements that pay off instead of just providing the basics, which are necessary but obviously are unsustainable.

Maybe Oregon could have more zoos or amusement parks that way, or the police departments could invest in Krispy Kreme donuts, that would pay off!

G.G. Thompson


Leave Xanadu and return to reality


My recent ballot says should I fail to vote "Yes" on the new school bond issue and should I fail to fork over a whopping $300 to $400 plus a year added to my property tax, it will be my fault for having the school district lay off teachers, reduce other school staff and cut school days for our Curry school children.

Here's a new idea: Stop paying those CEO salaries to the group of superintendents and stop wasteful spending of the already huge chunk of dollars collected from our property taxes for so-called education.

It also proclaimed that with the extra $500,000-plus each year the Curry School District could hire a music teacher. For what reason!

Have you heard the quaint heavy metal reverbs emanating from all those evil iPads, and has anyone experienced those cars at the high school which have their own home theater surround sound 15-inch speakers and a space-age boom box amplifier.

If the Board of Education people will transport themselves back from Xanadu and are serious about having us older Curryites fork over some serious money for music appreciation, I will share my box of 8-track tapes of Frank Sinatra's greatest hits and some jumpy jivin' Benny Goodman stuff with them. I'll even let them borrow my 8- track player if they promise to stop dreaming up these "get the money from the old people" schemes.

Some of us don't wish to share what we worked hard for all our lives. I voted "No" on the school tax issue!

Gary Smith

Pistol River

Blodgett andndash; the only one who stands out


Well, we certainly have choice this year for County commissioner. Frankly I appreciate all of them.

Anyone who runs for public office deserves some credit. It is usually an thankless endeavor.

We have had financial problems in the Curry County for nearly 20 years. We can trace it clearly to the closure of the forests to logging. Almost every year since then we have had to resort to short term federal assistance to bail us out. We have known for at least 10 years that these funds were going away.

And even though two of the current candidates represent 12 years of being in office during this time we haven't heard any solutions other than new tax measures or extra special pleading to Congress to allow us to survive another year.

After listening to the candidates, I still haven't heard anything new. It reminds me a little of the futility of addressing the same problem over and over again the same way and expecting a different result. The only way to get out of this mess is to elect people who are willing and capable of tackling the financial problem with new solutions. Re-electing the same people again who espouse the same failed solutions doesn't seem very logical.

The only candidate that stands out from the rest of the crowd is Leroy Blodgett. His experience with local government and public finance in general gives us the best opportunity to find new and permanent solutions. He is willing to think outside the box and find solutions. I have known Leroy for many years in a number of capacities and have always found him to be focused and solution oriented. His integrity is unquestioned.

I would encourage your vote for Leroy Blodgett.

Jim Relaford


Firefighters were total professionals


On April 17 my wife and I were driving north on US 101 and had to stop because a car in front of us was turning left. We were near Rowdy Creek Bridge.

We were hit full force by a semi-truck whose driver was not watching the road. It drove us across the southbound lanes and we came to rest against a guard rail. I was trapped in the wreckage.

Within minutes, volunteers from the Smith River Fire Department were on the scene; butcher, baker, candlestick maker, they left their jobs to help out. One firefighter got in the back seat and held my head against the possibility of a neck injury. While she held my head other volunteers took the roof off of our car so they could lift me vertically out of my seat. They covered us with a blanket to keep shards of glass off of us.

There was no questioning about how to proceed: Shall we do this, that, or another thing. I could hear them talking, "Hold this while I pull that," "Lift that piece while I cut it," etc.

They were extremely professional and we would like to thank them and publicly recognize their expertise.

Anne and Bob Morneau


Litter-B-Gone day in Brookings


I am inviting the public to participate in the next Litter-Be-Gone event happening on Saturday, May 12, from 9:45 a.m. until 12 noon. We will meet at Brookings City Hall.

We all agree that Brookings is a wonderful place to live with lots of things to do. We have people who are dedicated to keeping Brookings clean and interesting. These volunteers are also busy planning events, making parks better, placing art and signage throughout our city and caring for our Botanical Garden. Let's bring the volunteer spirit to a larger force for just one day and help to pick up the litter caused by either strong winds or human carelessness.

Please join me and others for a short morning to pick up litter. Wear sturdy shoes and trash bags will be provided. Thank you.

Patricia Brown

chairperson, Parks and Recreation


Redshirts cookbook is awesome, on sale


The Brookings-Harbor Redshirts would like to thank our unbelievably generous community for their support in making our cookbook, "While We Were Gone," recipes missed most by our military, a reality. Without all the many individuals, the business community and other non-profit organizations we would not have been able to get it done.

Our new cookbooks are awesome, here, and will be on sale at various stores in town for $12 each. We collected over $2,000 for ads that are in the back of the cookbook from the community. This moves us towards being able to buy more goodies and special needs items for our troops. All of them deserve to know how much we support and love them for what they do.

We get such wonderful letters and pictures showing their appreciation for what we do for them. What we do for them with your help doesn't even come close to what they are doing for us. The Redshirts are looking for a small uncovered utility trailer to borrow for the parade if anyone out there has one!

Thank you again to the best of the best!

Sharon Hitzman

president, The Brookings-Harbor Redshirts


Tax exemptions, are you kidding me?


First let me say that my only source of information is this newspaper. Also that I live in the city and I am a property owner.

I read that the proposed sales tax would exempt liquor and tobacco, but would tax such things as prepared (restaurant) food. Are you kidding me? I suppose that the reasoning is that tobacco and liquor are already taxed to the hilt, but so what. I beg to ask if the commissioners are smokers or drinkers, or both? They had me considering the sales tax until I read that. And, I do vote.

I read that the ad hoc commission made several suggestions, but the only two that I hear coming out of the commissioners are the two taxes (sales and property). I already pay them property tax for which I have to ask, what have they done for me lately, or ever. As a city dweller, yes we need the jail, Parole and Probation and the rescue (mostly volunteers) and marine units are great. If the county residents want patrol deputies, let them pay for them.

And is it true that the property tax rate in the county is less than that for us in the city?

Kaywood Rodgers


Time to legalize and tax cannabis


I see so many different people here arguing about the best way to balance the county budget. It is really concerning.

Should we raise taxes? Should we institute a sales tax? Should we slash services like police and fire? Education is always popular to cut!

What if I told you I know how we could easily balance the budget, make no cuts to county programs, reduce county spending, clear space in the jail , reduce crime and possibly rake in a healthy profit for the county? It's quite simple really, and the fact that no one is saying it makes me feel the need to.

Legalize and tax cannabis. A LOT of cannabis is grown and sold in this county. The fact that is this: Keeping cannabis illegal does nothing to deter people from using it, and despite the over-a-decade-long-several-billion-dollar-failed-war-on-drugs it is easier for children to acquire than alcohol. Why? if they wanted alcohol they would have to find someone of age willing to purchase it for them. You think we would have learned from the failed prohibition of alcohol. (which by the way is much more dangerous to society).

You are wasting our time and money by actively filling our valuable county jail space with people guilty of nothing more than possession of cannabis, and you are fools for keeping all this money flowing through the county in the hands of black-market.

It should be obvious that you are not going to arrest your way out of this problem. You can't litigate basic human desires. Your move. ...

Ryan Jones