Editor,

Biden’s remark you can't legislate by executive order unless you’re a dictator and yet in his first month he signed 40 executive orders. In 2014, the Obama State Department said the Keystone pipeline would not have serious or substantial impact on greenhouse gas emissions. Now, crude oil will be transported by trucks and railways that will cause more gas emissions. We also were oil independent.

Having open borders in the middle of a pandemic is dangerous for everyone in this country. The no longer America first is a sure sign of what this country will have to deal with in the next four years.

We are a democratic country with free speech and we have the right to our opinions without being ridiculed by the radical left or right. Each day, the socialist Democrats are passing executive orders taking away our liberties.

Linda Medrano

San Mateo

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(18) comments

Terence Y

Ray, great job with keeping other commenters on the defensive. Although I’d be surprised if they mount any kind of offense. After an enjoyable read your comments, I agree with Wilfred, well said. BTW, I hope you’ve had, or have scheduled a COVID shot – each day, more and more low-risk groups are cutting in line and you may miss out.

Tafhdyd

Ms. Medrano,

I do agree that we have a right to our opinions and free speech. Obviously we disagree on the executive orders. Biden did not legislate a bunch of new items, he only repealed most of the ones improperly put in place by the executive orders signed by Trump.

Ray Fowler

Gooooooooood morning, Tafhdyd!

Wow... talk about whacking the hornet's nest before we even finish our socially distanced, masked Sunday brunches... outside.

What was improper about a secure border? What was improper about continuing to move oil through a pipeline instead of moving the oil on less safe railroad cars?

On the other hand... what's proper about changing girl's HS sports programs? What's proper about rejoining the WHO? You know... the CCP's new propaganda agency. With the Who... we can sing "Won't get fooled again... " not so much with the WHO.

What's proper with green lighting nukes for Iran? What's proper with turning the Capitol into a citadel?

Hmmm... maybe I'm the one who whacked the hornet's nest.

Tafhdyd

Ray,

Seems like just a week or two ago I mentioned I didn't like to use absolutes on these subjects. I didn't say everything Trump did was wrong, I said "most" of his orders were being repealed by Biden. I don't have a problem with secure borders although I disagree with how Trump wanted to do it.

I think we discussed the pipeline a while back also. I will admit that I don't have current info on the use but when they wanted to start building it I think they were not using the first pipeline to capacity. Kinda like putting two mailboxes in front of your house and expecting to increase the amount of mail you receive. In addition the process of recovering and refining the tar sands oil in Canada is a much more environmentally unfriendly process. For those of us that care about the environment that is a big deal. After the pipeline would be completed there would only be about 50 jobs, mostly in Canada, to operate it. The temporary construction jobs lost could easily be replaced with infrastructure jobs rebuilding bridges, highways etc.

BTW, it was before brunch. I didn't eat till about 1:30.

Ray Fowler

You don't disagree with a secure border but didn't like the way Trump wanted to secure it... that's a reasonable position. I don't see Biden's policies as an improvement.

You're right... trying to wrap your arms around the pipeline is difficult. Jobs. I don't know how many pipeline jobs were canceled, and I don't know if they can be easily redirected to other infrastructure projects. I do know that the persons out of work cannot be easily redirected to computer coding jobs...

One job is very secure. The guy who bought the Burlington Northern RR. He controls most the tracks from Canada to the Midwest, and he remarked that Barack Obama's canceling the pipeline years ago would be good for the railroad business. I guess Joe's canceling the pipeline in 2021 will have the same effect.

Dirk van Ulden

Taffy - the major benefactor of this pipeline cancellation is Warren Buffett's invest fund. They own the large portion of the railway systems that transport oil. Surprise, he also is a major contributor to the Democratic Party, what a coincidence. You can't tell me that loading, moving and unloading railway tank cars is less hazardous than moving oil through a pipeline. The oil that would have been shipped through the Keystone line may now be diverted to China by a pipeline to be built to British Columbia. That is real environmental win, isn't it? Sleepy Joe at his best again, just pandering to his ignorant base.

Rel

Linda, your statement of "We are a democratic country with free speech and we have the right to our opinions without being ridiculed by the radical left or right." True enough. Then, you undermine your argument by ridiculing Dems by being socialist and taking away our liberties. Would you feel comfortable with "The fascists Repubs attacking our Capitol on 1/6 and literally trying to take away our voting liberties"? Or, would the R's return those socialist $2k checks, or not take that socialist FEMA aid in TX? There is enough vitriol on both sides. Only when our politics return to civility and the truth will our country return to some semblance of normalcy.

Ray Fowler

Rel

Whoa! Are you suggesting the riotous "fascists [sic] Repubs" in the Capitol on Jan. 6 represent Republicans and other conservatives in this country? Applying that logic would mean all Democrats share responsibility for the 20 people killed and two billion dollars in property damage caused last summer. We both know that's not the case.

When you talk about returning checks... one question... exactly where did the government get the money for those checks? You see, for all the talk about "government money" we hear, one part of the discussion is always left out, and it's this... the government does not have any money of its own. It acquires money by taking it in the form of ever increasing taxes from you and me.

I don't know LInda, the author of the LTE, she seems like a nice person... as you certainly are as well. But I don't think Linda is ridiculing elected Democrats with a decidedly socialist political bent who are impinging on our liberties. It's not ridicule when it's true.

Rel

Ray, before you get all bent out of shape, how about reading my reply carefully? Linda undermined her statement by calling Dems socialist (a favorite seemingly derogative of the right) and taking away our liberties. I asked if the counter example statements would make her comfortable knowing full well they are broad brush statements of equal value to her own.

As a taxpayer, I am fully aware of where funding of federal programs derive. I am also much more in favor of programs that benefit those most in need in times of great need over those programs equally costly but benefitting those who are rich in times of plenty like Trump's tax bill no one requested.

Finally, please tell us what socialist program of recent vintage (fostered by Dems) is impinging your liberties?

Ray Fowler

Rel

You must have me confused with someone else... I may be out of shape but I'm not "bent" out of shape by this conversation... I cannot speak for Linda, but with prominent Democrats openly associating themselves with socialistic principles, I can understand her saying that socialist democrats are taking away her liberties.

I'm not sure if you got the point about taxes. At the heart of the socialist democrats' movement is the redistribution of wealth, and this is largely accomplished by ever increasing taxes. How else do they expect to pay for all the "free" stuff they want to give away? Are you familiar with Thomas Sowell? He's an economist out of the University of Chicago, and he hangs out now down the street at Stanford's Hoover Institute. Dr. Sowell said, "What do you call it when someone steals someone else's money secretly? Theft. What do you call it when someone takes someone else's money openly by force? Robbery. What do you call it when a politician takes someone else's money in taxes and gives it to someone who is more likely to vote for him? Social Justice."

I'm assuming you're OK with socialist democrats deciding who to take money from then who should get that money... money the recipients did not earn. Medicare for all and free college tuition are just a couple of things higher taxes would subsidize. Some Dem candidates last year were promising affordable housing for all, more food stamps, and guaranteed jobs. So, how does this impinge on liberty? Easy. Pursuit of happiness... that means we are free to choose a course in life that can lead to success, however, a government that siphons off that success in the form of taxes impinges on that right to pursue happiness. What have socialist democrats done to deserve the authority to take away that pursuit of happiness then decide who gets the money they have confiscated through taxes?

Now, before you get bent of shape... we're not talking about catastrophic life events that are out of our control. A hurricane strikes, wildfires spread, etc. Those who lose homes and businesses will need food, medical attention, and services... and most importantly... a hand up. And they'll get it... that's because we are Americans and that's what we do. Folks in Texas need fuel and safe water... get it to them. Help them get steady... but that unexpected calamity is not a winning lotto ticket for them... it's not an early retirement paid for by taxpayers.

How are Dems fostering the impingement of liberties? Does it look like Dems are fostering or impinging on our freedom of expression? (Ask Anna Eshoo) Lock downs... does it look like Dems are fostering or impinging on our freedom to live unrestricted in this great land? Business shutdowns... does it look like Dems are fostering or impinging on our freedom of association and business owners pursuit of happiness? Schools... does it look like Dems are fostering or impinging the personal growth and health of children.

Rel... you may not care for how Linda said what she said, but her concerns are very real.

Wilfred Fernandez Jr

Ray,

Bien dicho mi hermano. And once again I thank Rel for providing you a pinata to fill with your gifts.

Tafhdyd

Ray,

You asked about where the money came from for the checks to be returned. I thought it was already there from all the booming increases in wages to the little guy and his spending of the same to help the economy from the trickle down of the Trump tax cut for the top 1% and big business. Hmmm, I guess the trickle dried up in the drought. BTW, where did the money come from the pay for the tax cut that many say adds about 1 to 1.5 trillion to the deficit?

Ray Fowler

"Booming increases in wages"? Would that be the proposed "booming" $15 minimum wage that will eliminate jobs?

Big business and the top 1%... Dems get warm and fuzzy when the they toss in "tax the rich" between verses of kumbaya while siting around a solar panel (as we can no longer sit around a campfire). Do you hear that sawing and hammering in the background? That's tax shelters being built. The tax shelters codified by millionaires in Congress... those millionaires have Ds and Rs behind their names. I guess they're just lucky with investments...

Back to the tax cut... didn't we talk about this in October? Lower and middle income groups benefited but not as much as higher income brackets? Maybe Joe's got something... take tax revenues... divvy them up and send checks to everyone... then bump up taxes so the money returns to DC. Maybe.

Ray Fowler

I may have to take a break, today... I'm doing my taxes.

Tafhdyd

Ray,

Yes we did discuss the taxes and income in Oct. or there about. I don't have the articles I used before but the info was from the IRS Table 1.4. I do remember that even though the lower income folks got a little more the upper income, 1 % and above got a huge improvement in their income. As I recall the lowest, 25k$ and below actually lost a couple of hundred dollars in 2018 vs 2016. The top 22,000 plus households collectively made more than the bottom 50 million households combined. Under Trump the rich are getting richer and the poor may not be poorer but they sure are not gaining on anyone.

Ray Fowler

Hey, Tafhdyd

That's a good way of looking at the effect on the poor... they may not be getting poorer but they are not moving up very quickly. As I said earlier this weekend... those in need deserve a hand up.

It's not enough to say the poor in the US are much better off than impoverished persons in other lands... our poor need help.

One billion people in those lands have improved their lives, yet 700 million are living on less than $2 a day. As an aside, I was surprised to learn that China provides more foreign aid ($38 billion according to some sources) than the US (about $34 billion)... except there is an asterisk next to China's total. Chinese aid is not subject to verification... plus a lot of their funding is for infrastructure and commercial access. The CCP would not fudge the numbers would they? Hmmm... reminds of a lyric from an Annie Lennox song... "Would I lie to you?" and it makes me wonder if the impoverished in developing countries are getting the true benefit of CCP largesse.

And how 'bout Uyghurs and factory workers at Foxconn... more lives improved by CCP beneficence...

Tafhdyd

Ray,

Kind of a twist on Satchel Paige for the rich. They don't need to look back, the poor ain't gaining on them.

Ray Fowler

Satchel Paige? Very creative reference. You win the cleverest comment of the day award. I cannot match it...

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