The Coastal Post - December, 1995

Letters Dec 95

"Remember The Jail!"

"The phrase "Remember the Jail!" has become the rallying cry of many who are disappointed, outraged, frustrated or simply once again disillusioned at the democratic process. How could we soundly vote down a proposal only to see it go ahead anyway?

"No wonder people consider the Buck Center proponents arrogant and disrespectful of the wishes of the people of Marin County.

"For those who may be new to County politics, the voters in Marin turned down the construction of a new jail not once, but three times, the last time in an initiative to halt all construction on the Civic Center site until approved by a vote of the people.

"As one of the attorneys who first challenged the building of that jail, forcing the County to consider less expensive alternatives, it was extremely frustrating to see those efforts overturned (on a technicality in the initiative processthe court felt the vote was really a referendum with a more stringent time limit for submission to the voters). This frustration has been felt and raised again and again by Marin County voters feeling an increasing distance between themselves and their elected representatives.

"Now, the citizens of Marin have spoken once again on their desire to see the Buck Center stop its grandiose plans to build a Taj Mahal medical research facility at Mt. Burdell in Novato.

"True, the Buck Center is a private entity, but it also has quasi public components. It is funded by charitable money left specifically for the benefit of the needy of all of Marin County, not the economic benefit of a small part of the County. It has a moral, if not legal, responsibility to respected the wishes of the population it is mandated to serve." (see Letters To The Editor for entire letter.)

"Now we see many, many people of good will, including the Independent Journal and the San Francisco Examiner which supported the project) calling for the Buck Center to heed the people's wishes, and come to the bargaining table to find a healthy compromise that might truly meet the intent of mrs. Buck's will to 'extend help toward the problems of the aged, not only the indigent but those whose resources cannot begin to provide adequate care. I am also mindful of those confronting problems of sickness or accident that threaten loss of lifetime savings and possessions'."

"This was the focus of the original proponents of a Buck Center. Most people do not realize the original plan for a research center on aging started with a group from College of Marin, Whistlestop ad other social service agencies who wanted to study the social, psychological ad economic aspects of growing older in a culture unable to provide adequate services to its elderly.

"As originally envisioned, researchers would work with Marin seniors in a variety of settings and would have provided valuable insight useful to the body of aging research throughout the country as well as providing direct services to those in need in Marin. The Center would have been housed at the College of Marin at Indian Valley, using underutilized facilities and providing an opportunity to link students, the elderly and research scientists in an innovative approach that could have proven a model for other programs throughout the country.

"I know it is hard to give up a dream. But I believe a better dream lies before us, a dream of co-operation and collective problem solving, for our County and our elders. The benefits to Novato will still be there. Whether the Buck Center locates at Indian Valley College or goes with a more modest facility at Mt. Burdell, the research can begin today, without relying on non-existent NIH funding. If more funding becomes available, the dream can grow accordingly.

"What about it, Buck Center Board? Are you willing to at least discuss the issue? You may be presently surprised."

Wear A Life Jacket

First of all, win or lose, I want to thank you and the Coastal Post for publishing my letter as a candidate for the Stinson Beach Fire District Board. At least I feel I was able to put my point of view out to the voters! Thank you very much.

On that weekend that you went to press, Kevin Gallagher and Frank Leroy Ramey, suffered a boating accident on Tomales Bay, and Ramey died. Why did he die? He could swim, they were not far for shore! But he was not wearing a life jacket.

I would like to comment from my point of view as the District Staff Officer for Public Education for the USCG Auxiliary. The recently released drowning fatalities figures for 1994 show that not wearing a life jacket is still the number one cause of death while boating in California and in the nation. This is such a needless way to go! Please help us get out the message that the Coast Guard Auxiliary and the Power Squadrons run Boating Safely Courses available for only the cost of a text book ($5.00). Call 1-800-336-BOAT or call me at 868-0803.

To avoid this kind of accident:

Always wear a properly-fitting, CG-approved life jacket.

Know how to load and balance a small boat.

Keep a lookout for waves as well as other boats.

Know the effect of alcohol on your judgment and reflexes.

BETTY H. OAKEY

United States Coasts Guard Auxiliary

Stinson Beach

Calculated Invasion

Three cheers to the Coastal Post for printing Jenny Houston's letter on November 1.

My congratulation to Jenny, another American who just woke up to the fact that immigrants and illegal aliens coming to our country today have absolutely no intentions of assimilating to American culture or the English language. Instead, we're expected to change our lives for them! It's clear they're here for money and a free education for their kids and the retirement of their parents.

These people, the Hispanics in particular, have full intentions of having babies until, in the words of La Raza, they "overwhelm" us. They think California and the Southwest is theirs and they have full intentions of reclaiming it and naming it Atzlan. There are racist organizations such as La Raza (The Race) that have openly admitted this fact. La Raza is on every college campus in California and several other states and they have strong lobbies in Washington funded by Mexico!

Why shouldn't the Latino students demand more? We've been stupid enough all along top pay for their invasion of our country! They should be happy they're in our schools at all, because next year when Prop. 187 finally clears the court, you're going to see a mass exodus.

I'm with Jenny, unless these people come here legally, assimilate to our culture, pay their fair share of taxes and quit their attempts to rename our streets, schools and quit waving their flags demanding services,they have no rights to, I say get rid of the ones already hereno welfare, and shut down the damn borders. No free school!

Enough is enough! Wake up America! Our neighbors to the south are not coming here because they love us! This is nothing less than a calculated, aggressive invasion!

GAIL GRANCSAY

Fairfax

Help For Homeless Lacking

Now that it's winter and Christmas is on its way, consider the homeless. Marin is one of the richest counties in the country, and we do so little for the homeless.

Our phlegmatic county supervisors, who do such a great job of caring for themselves, will do little for these people who cannot vote for them. Sad, isn't it?

JAMIE PHILLIPS

San Rafael

Slime Junkies

Electric cars are the future of this world. According to an article printed in the Wall Street Journal in the last year, the world has no more than 40 years of oil left. This is a conservative magazine that is not going to under-estimate the amount of oil left; if anything they will over-estimate. Only 40 years. Does anyone think that the world can switch off the dependence on oil in only 40 years? I don't think we can. Long before the oil runs out, the U.S. oil companies and OPEC will start hoarding oil and gasoline and raise the price to prolong their profits as long as possible. We will be waiting in line for gas like in the oil embargo.

The Big Three want to delay a California requirement of zero emission vehicles. I say, let them, because it will be their undoing. Japan has no oil, giving them the biggest incentive to find the perfect electric car. The Big Four lost to Japan because they were not ready for the people's desire for small cars. They then became the Big Three, almost becoming the Big Two if it was not for he U.S. government bailout. What I think will happen is that a Japanese auto company like Honda will suddenly start selling electric cars in the U.S. and literally take the market. Once people see that electric cars work, they will stop believing the anti-electric car propaganda put out by the American auto industry and the U.S. government. Electric cars will then sell like hotcakes, leaving the Big Three with their mouths hanging open. Remember, electric cars do not need tune-ups, oil changes, coolant (a toxic waste), engine rebuilds, valve jobs, transmission repairs, smog checks, and so on. If the Big three is not ready for the electric car breakthrough, then the U.S. could end up with the Big Two, then the Big One and eventually the Big Zero.

It is ludicrous for a society becoming completely energy-dependent on an organic mineral slime.

KEVIN E. WEST

Forest Knolls

Kirby Ferris: Hyperbole vs. Logic

I know the Coastal Post stands for freedom of speech more than anything else, and I appreciate that greatly. But really! Is the freedom to froth and foam incessantly about the same bogeyman also sacred? Out of pity, we shoot rabid dogs. How about Kirby Ferris?

I'm sure I can get KF's blood pressure up simply by writing the following word: Socialism. (I can see the spittle accumulating!) If I also whisper "government," his fever will surely rise even faster. Give us a rest.

"Socialism, above and beyond anything else, is built upon envy," rants KF. Oh, really? How envious it is to look at the world and see that some are sick, diseased, starving and homeless!? How envious is it also to notice that others are trying to use those sick, diseased, starving and homeless people to enrich themselves!? Oh, how the socialist must be envious of such immorality. How the socialist must yearn to disregard others' humanity, to scheme and manipulate with the dexterity of the heartless, or above all, to profit from the self-proclaimed superiority. The socialist must truly be green.

"If you are so smart, why aren't you rich?" is used by KF as a put-down (gee, where have I heard this before?) of those who are poor, extolling the virtues of being rich. Has it never occurred to KF that the only sane answer to this question is, "Because I have not tried and do not wish to be rich"?

"Bloodsuckers" he calls the socialists. Yes, to KF up is down. "Social" is the key part of "socialist." A group of neighbors who live downstream from the social Darwinist R/P (rugged-individualist person) notices that the creek water recently has gotten foul. Together they walk upstream and find the RIP who claims the "right" to do as he pleases. The social group says, "Oh, yeah? We refuse to be poisoned by your effluent. Stop it!" The RIP, of course, shoots at the "socialists." Guess who is doing the bloodsucking? The RIP's philosophy, of course, includes another RIP (Responsibility is for "Pussies"). Beginning of government regulation #1.

For KF the "liberal" is a "socialist." Real clarity of thought here! Any American "liberal" genuflects (though maybe not quite so deeply as do the RIPs) to the state religion of capitalism as frequently as possible in full camera view. Yes, maybe the olfactory nerves of "liberals" are a little more sensitive than the noses of the RIPs, but nationalize the food industry? Hardly!

Finally to you, KF, fellow traveler on the planet: Take a deep breath, exhale slowly, wipe the yellow pus from your eyes, use a napkin on your wet chin, and try a new formula. Your hyperbole is approaching infinity as your logic approaches zero.

MICHAEL TIMMEL

Petaluma

Health vs. Sick Care

The problem with health care is the system itself. Treating the sick is closing the barn door after the horse has escaped. The Chinese have the better health care system. Their job is to keep their patients healthy! The doctors are trained in herbal medicine and nutrition, trained to keep sickness away. If the patient gets sick, the doctor has failed!

In this country it's just the opposite. The doctor is not interested in anything the patients do to themselves while healthy. The average doctor would consider it degrading to be seen as a nutritionist, herbalist or chiropractor.

Instead of using methods to strengthen the body's own defenses, the doctor resorts to drugs and chemicals that actually weaken the immune system, like chemotherapy. Sometimes they simply start off by pulling out the knife. If you took the scalpels and drugs from the doctors, they would be useless. They simply are not trained to keep people healthy.

To fix the health care system we need to change it by requiring doctors to be trained in keeping people healthy. Doctors do not have to be experts in alternative medicine, but should be able to recognize a problem that can be cured or helped with alternative medicine, then refer the patient to an expert. The health care system will never become healthy itself without all options open to everyone. Most doctors and hospitals are too biased against alternative medicine, despite the fact that it is increasing in popularity. This is really where the health care crises is.

KEVIN E. WEST

Forest Knolls

Build Stronger COM

Elections are like sportsit's always more fun to win than to lose.

I am very pleased with the election results. I appreciate the strong support and trust that so many voters have given to me.

I will do my best to contribute to the College of Marin Board and look forward to serving with the other members of the Board as we approach the 21st century.

I congratulate the other successful candidates elected along with me and know that we will work effectively together.

During the campaign many issues of concern were addressed regarding the College of Marin, thus increasing the awareness among voters of the challenges facing the college. We should strive to continue this awareness and work toward building a stronger College of Marin.

FRANK PARNELL, M.D.

Ross

Who Are The Villains?

To Jeff Prugh, Editorial Page Editor, Independent Journal

Re: "Lucasfilm Is No Villain"November 19

You are very correct that George Lucas is NOT a villain. In the best tradition of an earlier day media mogul, William Randolph Hearst at San Simeon, Mr. Lucas wants to combine work (and some play) in an idyllic rural setting, where at Skywalker he has indeed been an excellent neighbor and preservationist.

But there are some serious "villains" that long-term residents of Lucas Valley know well. High on that list is "turncoat" former County Counsel Douglas Maloney, now in private practice and serving as legal "consultant" to Lucasfilm in its current application. From 1988 on, County Counsel Maloney assured residents along this two-lane winding country road that: "Lucas' proposal to rezone the Grady Ranch in Lucas Valley to commercial...is the biggest development threat the County faces... The Countywide Plan zoning is our only shield to protect Marin's rural areas... It's obvious if you want to keep a rural atmosphere you don't change the zoning to allow a huge 300,000 sq. ft. [currently increased to 456,100 sq. ft. plus underground parking on Grady alone] industrial complex in a restricted residential area." In 1988, County Counsel Maloney indicated that the Countywide Plan set aside the Grady Ranch as a "buffer zone" to protect the County's inland corridor (in which Big Rock Ranch sits).

The other "villain" is the Marin County Planning Department (now the MC Development Agency) and the Planning Commission that for many years has allowed homes to be built virtually a pebble's throw from the edge of Lucas Valley Road. As I write this today, a $500,000+ home is nearing completion almost touching the shoulder of Lucas Valley Road, in Lucas Valley Estates.

None of us in Lucas Valley want to incinerate or even hold fire to the feet of George Lucas. But it would be nice if the IJ would help us focus a warm spotlight on what is happening in the back room of our County planning department, and on our County Planning Commission where such things as the Countywide Plan and zoning seem to be matters of interest only for historians and archaeologists.

Is investigative journalism and in-depth reporting also dead and buried at the IJ? If so, I missed it on your obituary page.

DANIEL S. CHAFFIN, M.D.

San Rafael

Killing Cougars

The effort to repeal voter-approved Proposition 117 is a transparent attempt to institute the trophy hunting of cougars in California. As a result of the Legislature's buckling to the wishes of the NRA and other trophy-hunting organizations, California citizens will have to vote again on the trophy-hunting issuepackaged in a cleverly worded referendum with trophy hunting masquerading as management. But make no mistake, the March 1996 referendum is about trophy hunting.

Currently, Proposition 117 provides the California Department of Fish and Game with discretion to kill any cougar that "is perceived to be an imminent threat to public health or safety." A landowner may obtain a permit to kill a cougar harming livestock. The only activity banned by Proposition 117 is trophy hunting of these majestic animals.

The threat presented by these animals also must be kept in its proper context. There have only been two fatal attacks by cougars in California since 1909. Cougar attacks are so rare that dogs, deer, goats and jellyfish cause far more deaths to humans. For every person killed by a cougar in North America, 1,200 have been killed in hunting accidents. Furthermore, sport hunting does not decrease threats to livestock or people. Hunters kill cougars for trophy purposes rather than target an offending animal as Proposition 117 allows.

Trophy hunters are attempting to use fear tactics to persuade Californians to take away protections for these animals so that they may one again release packs of radio-collared dogs on a cougar and, after an exhausting chase, shoot the animal from a tree. On behalf of our 330,000 members and constituents in California, the Humane Society of the United States urges defeat of the March 1996 referendum.

WAYNE PACELLE

Vice President of Government Affairs

The Humane Society of the United States

Washington, DC

Thanks And Congrats

Thank you, 18,330 Marinites, for your votes in the College Board race. I ran unendorsed and unafraid and am overwhelmed by your support.

I wish to extend my congratulations and best wishes to the new board members, Larry McFadden and Francis Parnell.

BASIA CRANE

Kentfield

Appreciates Support

I want to express my most sincere appreciation to the voters in the Marin Community College district election. It was an interesting experience running for office and serving will be no less interesting.

You may be assured that the confidence expressed by your votes for my election is not misplaced. Please continue your support, commitment and involvement with the college in the coming years and we will all be winners.

Finally, my thanks to the other candidates for their good humor and friendship during the process.

LARRY McFADDEN

Fairfax

Taxes And Growth

I feel that Guy Meyer's letter "Taxes and Employment" should be responded to, in hopes of helping him understand, rather than accepting some socialist doctrines, blaming the Bill Gateses of the country.

Tax relief, although benefitting the rich, also sets the economy in motion. When people sell property, for example, or stocks making capital gains, taxes are paid. When the percentage of tax on these gains are too high, nothing is sold! The economy stagnates and on the eventual death of the owners, the transfer of the property to spouse or children is non-taxable, while establishing a new basis of value. The government gets nothing and the rich get richer. A tax cut makes sense, encouraging investments.

A flat tax would be the answer, with exemptions of $25,000 for a single person and $37,500 for a married couple, unpopular with attorneys, accountants and CPAs because of its simplicity! Maximum taxes should range in the 15-20% bracket and capital gains should be included. The federal and state governments would realize more income from the reduced taxes than presently received, and it would stimulate business. The old adage "100% of nothing is nothing" applies in this case. Lowered taxes would help everyone, rich and poor alike, including the middle class.

If indeed Mr. Meyers wants to correct injustices, then let him look at the tax-free disability pensions that have become so popular with retiring officials. It seems that a huge percentage of retirees suddenly develop physical or mental stress problems in their last days of public service. They apply, and receive, retirement disability which is non-taxable for some reason. These retirees may even have incomes of well over $100,000 without the pension. That is unfair! And a flat tax would include all incomes as taxable.

NATHANIEL MARANS

Tiburon

Homosexual Sex Or Drugs?

A friend recently sent me the following article: "Dying of the Light," by Midge Decter, National Review, November 27, p. 36-37, 40. The subtitle summarizes the article: "Presumably aware of the dangers they court, homosexuals continue to contract AIDS at an astonishing rate. The 'support' they receive for doing so is unconscionable."

Since this is a magazine devoted to the political right, one would expect to have an article slamming homosexuals. In this case, however, I am somewhat in agreement with the author in her contention that the homosexual political agenda has become completely morally bankrupt, but for totally different reasons.

In assessing the situation she assumes two things: (1) that AIDS is a sexually-transmitted disease, and (2) that homosexuals (I assume she's addressing male homosexuals here) are a highly promiscuous bunch of people engaging in unsafe sex and are therefore perpetuating the "epidemic" in their own community by their promiscuity.

All thoughtful gay men should immediately understand the fallacy of these assumptions. Studies have shown that the syndrome in the gay male community is caused about 95% by drugs. The assumption that a highly-infectious venereal agent would be contained with a group not physically separate from the dominant social group is also epidemiological nonsense. Her arguments therefore fall apart.

But let us look at the problem it poses for gay leaders. They have built their political agenda around a lie, i.e., that AIDS is not peculiar to the homosexual community and that eventually it will spread into the straight population. After 15 years we are still the largest group being affected by far (the figures differ here, but I think it is safe to say about 80%). It should be dawning not only on right-wing spokespersons, but also on the leaders of the gay community that this lie cannot be perpetuated forever. Sooner or later gay men are going to have to face the undeniable fact that it is something in our lifestyle (and this includes our psychological makeup as well as our drug habits) that is driving us to the grave. A life built on lies is not a life worth living.

It must be pointed out that those well-meaning friends of the gay community who raise funds for AIDS charities are part of the problem, and I cannot help but wonder just how much of their action is generated by a suppressed desire to see gay men put away permanently. I, for one, have doubted their motives from the very beginning.

The stereotype that this author does not fling at us, but which exists widely in the AIDS dissident camp, nevertheless, is that drugs and sex are inextricably bound up with one another. This, again, is only partially true. Although the nitrites have been the most popular sexual drug, the dominant drug on the scene in fast-lane gay society in Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, Seattle and Miami Beach is now crystal meth, replacing Ecstasy. People who are strung out on drugs or alcohol usually are not much good at sex, and many of those who are getting ill are the ones who are over-using drugs. Crystal meth does not always act as an aphrodisiac: "We've read articles about guys on it who masturbated for 30 hours without coming..." ("Crystal Meth's Dangerous Dance" by Scott Baldinger, Out magazine, December/January, 1996) Just what the connection between drugs and sex is will continue to be a murky picture, but the one inescapable fact is that the drugs continue to take their toll, and the gay politicos are going to have to face up to this fact. To continue to perpetuate the lie that AIDS is a problem of all of society will lead to our community being charged with sexual promiscuity and a possible reinstatement of the laws banning homosexuality.

I have said it over and over again: It is axiomatic in holistic medicine that you treat the patient and not the disease. The patient must take responsibility upon her/himself to assist the practitioner to get to the bottom of the problem, which in almost every case is also to a large extent psychological (some practitioners say that 50% of every disease is psychological). There can be no doubt that gay men carry a heavy negative psychological overlay. Those well-meaning friends of the gay community who are now assisting us to die through AIDS charities should take it upon themselves to help heal the psychological wounds in the gay community, i.e., acting as our practitioners and true friends. Gay and straight need one another in a profound way, and I would hope that the encounter between us in various forms can make this a reality. In the end, it is always love that heals, and lest we become sexually puritanical, remember that the spiritual side of life grows out of sexual fulfillment.

FRED A. CLINE, JR.

San Francisco

7: ou may be presently surprised.

DOTTY E. LeMIEUX

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