Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor 2/3

How to ‘delight’

PG&E’s new CEO wants to “delight me.” Hah! The Viewpoint on Jan. 29 voicing concerns over PG&E’s safety seminars should make everyone in the disaster zone leery of anything that comes out of their spokespersons’ mouths.

“The earthquake modeling software cannot link faults,” they say. Seriously? How can PG&E, with any degree of honesty and integrity, come out and say the plant was built to withstand any significant event the surrounding faults can produce, when software models only one single fault at a time? What would delight me is for PG&E to withdraw license extension requests and shut down the plant.

We’re still stuck with thousands of years worth of spent fuel rods stored on-site that pose enough of a threat to our wellbeing.

Rather than spending $600 million on the proposition battle a couple years ago or installing SmartMeters nobody wants, that money could’ve been invested in clean energy producing solar, wind and wave machines on the plant site, retaining local jobs while converting to clean, renewable energy to replace what’s currently nuclear generated.

David Giordanengo

Pismo Beach

Romney’s profits

In her recent letter to the editor, Sue Perry said, “as I see it, Mitt Romney earned, invested and paid taxes on the profits of his own money.”

Actually, Mr. Romney had very little (if any) of his own money in the Bain Capital private equity transactions. The investment capital came from outside investors including highnet-worth individuals, hedge funds and institutional investors. Bain Capital received fees based on a percentage (usually 20 percent) of the profits on each deal. Those profits were generated using other people’s money!

It gets worse. Because of a relentless lobbying campaign waged by Wall Street (including Bain), there is aquirk in the tax code called “carried interest.” Carried interest is taxed at capital gains rates (currently 15 percent). Mitt Romney made millions and millions of dollars without investing his own money and it was taxed at capital gains rates. Carried interest allows you to get capital gains treatment without having any “skin in the game.”

Sound fair?

Lee Van Leeuwen

San Luis Obispo

Let peace prevail

During this election year of 2012, I wonder whether the Republican candidates or President Barack Obama know about the threat of nuclear war when it comes to Israel’s protection? I will not stand for nuclear war to happen because of the peace stand I have as a Christian.

There is one song from Sheila Walsh’s “Don’t Hide Your Heart” album that I have at home in my collection of contemporary Christian music called “Under the Gun.” The United States should not back down when it comes to sanctions to Iran, if the consequences are true. To prevent World War III from ever happening should be the focus of this election year and let peace prevail over warfare (Isaiah 2:4).

Scott C. Presnal

Morro Bay

Professional chief

I’ve been in two different social situations recently and unfortunately heard gossip about the Paso Robles Police Department. It’s unfortunate that news travels at lightening speed these days and “allegations” of sexual misconduct seem to be a favorite topic.

I’ve not read anything about the Police Department online. However, I was a member of the Paso Planning Commission for a few years and attended many City Council meetings.

Our police chief, Lisa Solomon, has always been an extremely professional and articulate participant in that process. She worked tirelessly to acquire state-of-the-art equipment for her crew while balancing a tight budget. She handled the Amgen tour with flawless organization and professionalism. She worked with our past police chief for years, earning her way to the top position of chief while raising a family, and she carried out all of her duties with pride.

I know from experience how difficult it must be to be in a position of authority over people who may have wanted to be in your position. Sometimes that position of power works against you, no matter how hard you work. Disgruntled past employees sometimes have axes to grind and don’t care whose life they destroy on their way down.

Christie Withers

Paso Robles

Uneven exemption

To defray the costs of current and planned parking structures, the San Luis Obispo City Council has decided to charge for parking on Sundays. Downtown merchants support this decision, as they expect it will increase parking space turnover and boost business. Moreover, spaces will become more available to handicapped parkers who can park for free in any open space.

But rather than start metering at 9 a.m., like all other days, the council created a special exemption for downtown churches by delaying Sunday metering until 1 p.m.

According to city staff projections, this exemption will cost the city more than $116,000 annually. It is understandable that the council is sympathetic to the inconvenience of parking fees to churchgoers, but no other group enjoys such an exemption. Not seniors, the poor, or students. Not the Seventh Day Adventists who meet downtown on Saturdays. Not the public library, the senior center or any other group that holds activities during the other days of the week. If there are to be parking exemptions, let them be distributed more equitably across our community, to those who need it most.

David Leidner

San Luis Obispo

Slow down a bit

What is this need for speed in the rural area of Santa Margarita? Drivers pass on the curves and over the double yellow lines. I thought country living was supposed to be slow and relaxing, but for some reason drivers feel the need to drive 65 mphplus.

Combined with the construction of the Topaz Solar Plant (the traffic and litter has increased 10 fold), the proposed quarry at the intersection of Parkhill Road and Highway 58 and the bicyclists, I can only foresee a very bad situation for all of us. So please folks, slow down and enjoy our beautiful scenery.

Kevin Alf Lee

Santa Margarita

Bashing the other

This is in response to the Jan. 30 letter on the Keystone pipeline from Mr. Christie of the Sierra Club. He made some good points, but I have an issue with this statement:

“A project this far-reaching deserved better than the ‘politics as usual’ strategy of a do-nothing Republican Congress.”

Why can we not have a discussion in this country without having to bash the opposing political party? Frankly, as soon as I read that line, all the other points the writer made were dismissed as supporting his political agenda.

Come on, people, does every issue have to include vitriol on both sides? With the Internet, Twitter, blogs and whatever the heck else, information is more readily available than ever. It seems both parties have developed a mindset of making sure the most radical members of their parties are mollified when making political statements. The Democrats pander to the most liberal members and Republicans pander to the most conservative. We do know, don’t we, that these folks are way out on the edge of the political spectrum? It does not surprise me that this session of Congress passed the fewest bills in history.

Mr. Christie, good letter. Without the hate, it would have been great.

Gary Stitch


Business president

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney is running for president on the experience he has as a businessman. The electorate at large has to wonder the following, among other things:

Was a businessman ever elected to the presidency of the USA who ended up being a good president?

Is the approach and mindset at governing a country and interacting with the world the same as running a business?

If business experience is important, how come Mitt Romney lost to John Mc-Cain in the 2008 contest?

After following some of the Republican primary contests and watching some of the debates, I get the feeling that ideology rather than common sense is driving the Republican primary voter. It will be interesting to see how the winner of the Republican primary contest will change his tune after he gets into the general election.

Of course, there is a very good chance that the next president will be elected by moneyed interests and voter suppression. Unfortunate but very possible.

Fabrizio Griguoli

Shell Beach