Letters from readers, September 5, 2019

Just because you can doesn’t mean you should

In the 8/30/19 edition of your paper, on page B2, I noticed an AP article about how in 2017 deaths due to red light running was at a 10-year high (on an average of two people killed every day in the US by drivers who don’t stop at signals). How tragic.  

In the piece David Yang and Brian Tefft, researchers with AAA, didn’t seem to have “...a better answer than we do…” to explain the 28% increase since 2012 of crash deaths at intersections with traffic signals.  

They cited such things as “distracted driving”, “traffic lights that weren’t timed optimally, perhaps with a yellow caution cycle that’s too short”, and gave some tips that I remember from high school driver’s education about approaching intersections as a driver, pedestrian, and cyclist.  

What was missing was the cold hard facts that too many persons drive too fast, do not care about following the laws of the road, and just drive in the idiotic and irresponsible ways of a “Fast and Furious” video game. I see the intersection cameras, but doubt that we have the personnel or current legislation to have key intersections monitored in live-time.

What complicates ticketing violators of blowing red lights is the fact that “according to California law, a citation can only be issued for a red light camera violation if there is a clear picture of both the driver and the license plate.

Not all red light camera tickets require action on your part or come with penalties for not paying a fine (https://www.ticketclinic.com ),” and there are plenty of law firms who will go to court for you to get you off-the-hook.  

It’s like some of the students I taught before I retired who when asked why they did something replied “Because I could.” Equally tragic.

Charles T. Houston


Living off the land

I recently drove to Tehachapi through the Windmill Farm. And it got me to thinking. The extreme right wants the US to adopt the Green New Deal. They want us to use alternative power sources and drive electric cars.

Wind energy. A great idea and the wind always return, especially here in the AV. I’m sorry we can’t use wind turbines; they make noise that’s distracting and birds fly into the turbines and get killed.

Solar energy. Again, a great idea, the sun always shines here in the AV. But they do take a lot of land, but here in the AV we don’t grow a lot of crops and those we do grow use a lot of valuable water.  

Oops my mistake, we can’t use solar panels, we scape the ground of vegetation and the winds blow the dust all over and we have to breathe it.

Hydro energy. Most of our electric used to be generated this way. But we stopped because the environmentalists told us we were creating issues with the fish in the streams.

Nuclear energy. Creates all sorts of power. To bad we are closing down all of our nuclear power facilities.

I guess we need to just stick with coal and gas burning electric generation facilities. I’m sorry what was I thinking, they kill the ozone.

I guess we just need to stop using electricity and driving vehicles. We all just need to start living off the land like they did 200 years ago in an agrarian society. And let’s not forget to get our flintlock pistols, muskets and black powder supplies.

Anybody know where I can buy a quill pen and a bottle of ink?

Greg Carlson


No merry

Christmas in sight

We all know that Donald Trump lives in a fantasy world.

Among other things he sees himself as an economic genius and a great deal maker. He has long believed that America’s economic foundation should be to stick big tariffs on foreign nations. Economists know that tariffs can be used to let nations realize we don’t care for some of the things they are doing, but tariffs should never become the core of our economic policies.

When tariffs are placed on other nations, as Trump has done, especially on China. What happens is that the countries simply retaliate and place tariffs on U.S. exports coming into their countries. In the end, those who suffer are businesses which have to pay the taxes, consumers who must pay more on the imports coming to the U.S., and workers who lose their jobs.

The real problem with Trump and his tariffs on Chinese goods is that what he really cares about is containing China. He wants to significantly decrease the political, military and economic power of China in the world, and, of course, make Vladimir Putin happy. Putin has always wanted nothing to do with China, and Trump is merely the tail being wagged by the dog.

What is even worse is that U.S. farmers will never get back their Chinese markets. China has already moved to get their soy beans, pork, and other imports elsewhere, mostly in central and South America. A Merry Christmas is not right around the corner and the scrooge is Trump.

Ralph S. Brax


(1) comment


About red light cameras...

IF accidents are up in the last ten years, one factor will be that people drive less, with fewer accidents, when there is a recession.

Those who want red light cameras in the Valley need to know that in LA County, camera tickets can be ignored. So, the $500 tickets might get issued, but few will be paid. For more info about why the cam tickets can be ignored in this county, do a search on red light camera voluntary.

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