Letters to the editor for Sunday, March 11, 2018
March 10, 2018
Getting facts straight on voter patterns
In her commentary of Feb. 24, Ronni Hannaman wrote, "The national Gallup poll taken during the 2016 presidential election shows the independents gaining considerable foothold with 42 percent registered as independent, 29 percent Democrat, and 26 percent Republican." According to Gallup senior editor Jeffrey Jones, "An average of 39 percent of Americans self-identified as political independents in 2016, down from 42 percent in 2015 and reaching its lowest point in six years." ("Independent Political ID in U.S. Lowest in Six Years," news.Gallup.com.)
Hannaman further writes that "both established parties continue to disappoint voters."
Jones/Gallup: "Meanwhile, identification with both major parties edged up, with Democrats continuing to maintain a slight advantage over Republicans, 31 percent to 28 percent."
Several times Hannaman uses exact figures for Nevada millennials in their voting patterns. But she does not say what she means by millennials and there is no agreed definition. Gallup and Price Waterhouse define those born after 1980 as millennials, MetLife and the Neilsen ratings use 1977, the Census Bureau uses 1982. Others just say millennials are the generation that followed Generation X, which is imprecise.
In her lead sentence, Hannaman refers to the "Independent Party." Nevada has no such party. There is an Independent American Party, which she references later on, and she reports that it was "founded in 1998 (and) started in Utah."
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It was founded in 1968 in Alabama by George Wallace as the vehicle for his third party presidential candidacy. It is known in every state except Nevada as the American Independent Party. In Nevada, organizer Dan Hansen chose to name it the Independent American Party. From this, Ms. Hannaman seems to confuse political independents (lower case "I") with Independent Americans (upper case "I").
Nevada does not have a small-i independent box to check on voter registration forms. To the extent that voter registration figures can be used to identify independents, the "non-partisan" box serves that purpose. However, many small-i independents choose to register with a party so they can vote in primary elections for more than just non-partisan offices, so registration is an uncertain gauge.
When it comes to changing gun policy, follow the money
It's time to remember which businesses support the NRA and which don't. Those companies that have disassociated from the NRA are to be commended and patronized by all of us who believe there's no place in American society for assault weapons. We should also avoid doing business with those who support the NRA. Pretty simple. As is often the case in American politics, it's a matter of "following the money."
When the public stops going to a certain restaurant, department store or gas station, it has an impact. That's why we need to remember those businesses that support stronger gun laws so that we the public can patronize and support them.
I believe it's also imperative to remember when we go to the polls which elected officials take NRA campaign donations. The NRA votes with its checks, thoughtful folks vote in the voting booth. Pretty simple.
Corruption, liberal policy responsible for school shooting
As we learn more, it becomes clear the Florida shooting was the result of corrupt law enforcement and liberal ideology.
Sheriff Israel is an ardent liberal that handed out cushy, high-paying jobs to people that gave him generous political donations for re-election.
Broward County adopted a school discipline policy praised by the Obama administration seeking to reduce the reported number of school suspensions and expulsions for minorities.
Former Chicago school superintendent Runcie was chosen to lead the Broward County School District. Their main purpose was to minimize (not report or arrest) juvenile crime in order to increase government school funding.
The sheriff was called to the Cruz home nearly 40 times. As a minor, Cruz was found with guns, knives and ammunition, but never arrested.
The Broward County sheriff decided his political career was more important than the lives of our children. This tragedy wasn't about the NRA, it was about money and politics, as usual. Shame.
On Second Amendment: Times have changed
In his recent letter to the editor, Alan Dale Daniel contends, and arguably so, the original intent of the Second Amendment, added to our Constitution by inclusion in the Bill of Rights, was to ensure the citizenry "can resist an overly powerful government with force of arms." In an era when our nation had no standing army and extant weaponry consisted exclusively of muzzle-loading, smooth-bore rifles and cannon, the ability of citizens to rise up against an oppressive government may have been a possibility.
But times have changed and today's armed community would find themselves, should they be foolish enough to rise up with weaponry, facing a military with resources so overwhelming and organized as to make even consideration of such an option laughable. Times have changed, and while cynics may disagree, Americans are now "armed" with a much more effective and civilized means of changing their government. It's called the ballot box, and while it surely existed in colonial times, inclusion of today's vastly more inclusive electorate will ensure the continuing existence of our representative democracy which, with all its flaws and shortcomings, remains the world's best form of government. November approaches …
Columnist deserves an apology
Mr. Dunn seems to take a lead from DNC playbook to attack the messenger (Mr. LaSor). When Democrats accuse someone of misdeeds, they are usually much more involved in it themselves, an example being Trump-Russia collusion 24/7 for the past year in the media. As it turns out, Hillary Clinton and the DNC were involved, paying $12 million for the faulty Fusion Steele Dossier put together by Clinton aides, Russians and Steele (a former British spy), which was used by the Obama Justice Department and the FBI to obtain FISA warrants to spy on Trump associates without disclosing this to FISA court.
Also, the Uranium One deal where 20 percent of US uranium was passed on to Russian interests and the Clinton Foundation received $145 million in contributions from the principals in the deal.
Dunn claims Fox News is unreliable. That can be disputed by the Harvard study made during the first 100 days of the Trump administration showing the bias of the news — CNN and NBC reported 93 percent negatively for Trump; the rest of the media was 80 percent negative. Fox was 50/50.
Former FBI director Comey is guilty of passing his notes (classified information) from the meeting with the president to the New York Times, along with exonerating Clinton months before interviewing her. Nice try to blame the Bush administration for Fast & Furious, when Attorney General Holder was held in contempt of Congress on the matter, and who also neglected to investigate the IRS abuses targeting conservatives.
Mr. LaSor deserves an apology for your pretending to be a fact checker for Snopes.
Otto Mark Tarvainen
Columnist has earned praise
Rich Dunn, I salute you and praise your recent commentary on Fred LaSor's editorials. I have had two letters to the Appeal editor published regarding LaSor's myopic view of the world and USA politics.
Your letter expertly dissected the misinformation he presents as factoids. Your commentary represents realistic and fact-supported counterpoints.
Well done, sir.