Facts spoil joke about Bush’s ‘exit strategy’

Bob Woelk thought he got in a good joke at the president’s expense last week (Free Falling, Dec. 13).

Just one small problem though: he needs to check his facts. It should be noted that the turnpike he spoke of in Dallas is named for George H.W. Bush (also known as Bush 41)and not George W. Bush, the current president.

Hence, the “exit strategy” joke is not quite so funny as he thought.

Raye Roberts


Should diamonds be a girl’s best friend?

Thanks to “Nightline” for a feature on the movie “Blood Diamonds.” Having lived in a diamond-producing area of Africa, this film sounds realistic.

DeBeers, the major importer of diamonds to the United States, doesn’t want you to think so, but the company’s relationship with the former apartheid government of South Africa bloodies its hands.

Russia, the other large diamond producer, mined theirs using political prisoners in slave labor camps.

You be the judge, are diamonds a girl’s best friend?

Mark Rogers


Incident generated action and support

What a great, hard-working group of kids! Ten students from Hillsboro High School’s FCCLA (Family, Career and Community Leaders of America) served the annual Hillsboro Community Medical Center employee Christmas party Monday evening.

The FCCLA members, under the guidance of adviser Monica Leihy, prepared the tables, served the meal, and cleaned afterwards. The napkins were placed at table edge with silverware an inch from the edge of the table, food served from the left and drinks from the right, etc.

High-dollar restaurants in large cities couldn’t have done it any better. And the students were so nice! Hillsboro parents should be proud. It was a real treat for everyone attending.

Thanks again to the FCCLA.

Christmas Party Committee

Hillsboro Comm. Med. Center

Coal-fired power plants don’t help us

Are residents of the High Plains willing to forfeit yet another large slice of the gifts of land, water, clean air and quality of life?

If we are content to believe a vocal minority, the proposed coal fired electric generation plant near Holcomb will be the next best thing to sliced bread.

Don’t believe it for one minute. These promoters are not required to “tell the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.” As inhabitants of the High Plains, all we need to do is remain silent, forfeit our precious water in perpetuity, provide a small tract of land as a hiding place from society and look in the other direction.

This will allow corporate pirates to reap billions of dollars in profits. Remember, corporations don’t die, they continue on forever. They don’t answer to society, they assume limited accountability for their actions, and pay very little in taxes.

As a western Kansas farmer, I am sick and tired of the colonization of rural America. We must take a stand. We cannot allow the continued exploitation of our natural resources, and the deterioration of our health and environment in the name of “economic development.”

If you are looking for the truth, follow the money. You will have to look hard, because the money isn’t even passing through our neighborhood. The imported coal will be transported by an out-of-state railroad.

The vast majority of the energy produced will be exported. Over a 50-year period, Sunflower’s cost of obtaining water rights will only amount to a sprinkling of dollars for every million gallons of depletion of a very precious resource. The major deposits in our state will be mercury and CO2, not cash.

I do not see a coal-fired power plant as a pillar upon which to build a future. Let’s make sure this is not part of the legacy left to our children and grandchildren.

I recently saw a bumper sticker with a quote by Maggie Kuhn: “Speak your mind, even if your voice shakes.” Contact your state representative, state senator and Gov. Sebelius. Demand a moratorium on construction of new coal-fired electric plants in the state.

Tom Giessel, president

Pawnee County Farmers Union


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