OUR READERS' OPINIONS - 09/12/10

Advertisement

Turner is a proven, effective leader

I am writing in support of John Turner and to tell you of what a tremendous opportunity you have for your community. Being a graduate of The Citadel Military Academy and a United States Army platoon leader in combat, I recognize character, competence and true leaders when I see them.

During my deployment in Iraq as a scout platoon leader with the 5th Squadron - 4th Cavalry Regiment of the 1st Infantry Division, our success relied heavily upon skillfully operating within the complex maze of new rules and regulations we were given under the U.S.-Iraqi Security Agreement.

Military Intelligence alone was soon insufficient to effectively identify, combat and arrest our terrorist enemies who hid in and among the civilian population whom we were tasked to secure and protect.

Enter John Turner. I had never personally seen how just one "outsider" could so dramatically impact the mission and success of over 500 soldiers until I met John. His knowledge and competence were immediately recognizable by his suggestions and the quality of his work. His extensive experience in law enforcement and as a lawyer gave him the unique ability that none of us had, to suggest proper courses of action. The breadth, scope and accomplishments of his work simply cannot be overstated.

Personally, John was an immediate hit within our squadron as he was a friend to all soldiers. His effective work ethic and upright character were immediately appreciated. We all knew John had volunteered to be here in a combat zone with us at a time in his life when he surely didn't have to.

He was soon sought out as an "unofficial" big brother. Because he wasn't in the Army, it was easy for soldiers to approach John when they just needed to talk. John is a kind soul and being a Christian, he cheerfully gave of his own time and provided solid counsel and console.

We struck gold with John Turner being assigned to us; he is a true American patriot. I could see during deployment and in retrospect, John Turner's work truly saved American lives. I highly recommend John without reservation or hesitation for any office or position that requires an effective, experienced, battle-proven, caring and competent leader.

Andrew Allman

Fairfax, Va.

Culwell is better choice

I was surprised to see the results of the Columbia County primary election, which showed Prosecuting Attorney Rea Culwell trailing her opponent. It appears many voters may have voted along party lines instead of voting for the better candidate.

As a rural county prosecutor I understand the demands of the job, which include a lot more than prosecuting criminal cases. While the challenger claims experience, I question whether it's the right experience to be as successful a county prosecutor.

You, the voter, should be asking the challenger: Has he passed the Washington state Bar exam? How long has he practiced law in Washington? How is legal experience from Louisiana, which has a different legal system from all other 49 states, going to apply to practice in Washington?

Has he appeared before a Washington Court of Appeals or the Washington Supreme Court? How many cases has he tried in Washington? How many cases has he prosecuted?

Has he ever successfully defended a Washington county under the Land-Use Petition Act, argued in forfeiture hearings or appeared before the Growth Management Hearings Board?

What experience does he have in providing legal advice to law enforcement, county commissioners, planning boards, assessors, auditors and treasurers on issues such as employment, elections, taxation, land use, open public meetings and public recordsrequests?

Culwell knows Washington law and procedure and is very capable in all of the areas listed above.

The challenger uses phrases like "fiscal responsibility," but fails to recognize that Culwell runs her office under budget and has also secured grants to help save limited county funds. The most fiscally responsible candidate will be the one who provides the best legal advice that will keep the county from being sued, and that is Culwell.

Additionally, because Culwell has such a breadth of knowledge and experience, she saves the county money by not having to hire outside attorneys for specialized matters. I believe Rea Culwell is the more fiscally responsible candidate.

Voters need to look past the party designation and vote for the better candidate with the more relevant experience. Rea Culwell is an asset to Columbia County, the southeast region and the state … and this is coming from a Republican.

Matt Newberg

Pomeroy

Turner is right choice for WW County

I love the people of Walla Walla County! I've served them for 34 years as a deputy with the Sheriff's Office. It had always been my dream to be sheriff, but I was defeated in the primary.

Even so, I'm glad I ran. Running for political office was an eye-opening experience. I have great respect for those who do it!

My "lows" were life-long friends who stopped talking to me or outright lied to me. But the "highs" were wonderful: true friends and new friends who believed in and supported me. I thank those people from the bottom of my heart.

I was honored to campaign simply and ethically, the same way I am in law enforcement. Now those wonderful people who supported me are asking me whom they should support for sheriff.

The answer is John Turner.

I had heard that John Turner was wrong for Walla Walla. But I make my own decisions.

I thoroughly investigated John, and I also learned about him over many shared evenings.

John Turner is the real deal! I knew I'd have an uphill battle to win, but I came to realize the first thing I'd do if I was elected was hire John Turner. We'd be fools to let someone with his background, education and passion get away!

I'm a real local boy, and I want my county to be safe. So I didn't win, but I now endorse John Turner for sheriff because it's the right thing for my county. When this year is over I'll go back to my civil service sergeant's post and keep doing the job I love!

I haven't asked John for any post in his administration, and he hasn't promised me any. No deals here! I just know the way things really are: I've been watching them for 34 years.

Bill White is a nice man; he's good at computers and grant writing. But he's no leader; he cannot make the hard decisions. John Turner can.

Walla Walla County is at a crossroads. The next sheriff must have the real-world experience, arrests, education, street smarts, communication skills and openness to new ideas to assure the safety of our families and our homes. I am so grateful to those of you who helped me and donated to my cause.

If you supported me, or even if you didn't, please vote for John Turner.

Jim Romine

Prescott

Car wash at Elks was a success

Recently a group of Pioneer Middle School students held a fund-raising car wash. The money raised goes to Smithsonian Student Travel to support the kids in their travels to Washington, D.C.

Pioneer Middle School teacher Dan Calzaretta and parent Kathryn Southwick-Hess are organizing the trip, which has 35 participants so far. The kids will be visiting several Smithsonian Institutions, the Capitol Building and the Holocaust Museum. There is a curriculum that is available to the kids that they can complete for high school credit.

This trip is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for many of these kids, and we appreciate this outpouring of support from the community.

Walla Walla Elks Lodge No. 287 was particularly helpful. It donated the use of its parking, a perfect location for the event, and donated a whole lot of water! Its members were also kind enough to advertise our event on their reader board. The car wash raised just over $775, and we consider it a huge success. We could not have done it without the Elks, the parents and all the donors.

Katie Christianson

Walla Walla

Greenwood is trustworthy, intelligent

I have known Richard Greenwood for a number of years and witnessed his willingness to support the youth activities in the community. He is a trustworthy, intelligent person and has expressed his willingness to execute the duties of the coroner when elected for Walla Walla County.

I hope you will vote for Richard in the election.

John Himmelberger

Dayton

American people are leaderless

There was an article in a recent Sunday paper titled "Tax cuts vs. deficit spending" describing the differences between the GOP and the Democrats. The gist of the piece was their particular approach to the cure for our current woes. At the end of the story the last sentence was "It has the makings of a first-rate debate."

Really, both parties are going to debate the out-of-control spending and cover-up by the Pentagon? Trillions lost! No one knows where it went!

Search Rumsfeld's press release the day before 9/11. Of the Pentagon's budget, 25 percent a year was lost. And, since the War on Terror started, it only got worse, much worse.

TARP money in the billions is missing, once again search the net. Where'd it go? Don't ask, our leaders don't know. And, our media should be all over this, screaming from the rooftops! Hundreds of billions are lost in our government annually, and neither party says a word. Too busy representing the people I guess.

Jobs lost? How about the stagnation of wages for a decade, unless you're a civil servant who gets a cost-of-living adjustment yearly. The only way workers were able to keep up was to use their homes as an ATM. And, now most are upside down on their mortgages.

What about Social Security, the fund just has IOUs. If our legislators were CEOs, and robbed the retirement funds of their employees, they would go to prison. Whoops strike that, the worst offenders of our current fiscal crisis still have not been sent to jail, let alone even charged. And, this is two years after the collapse of our economy.

Both parties will talk around the edges of the issues, scoring points on their political opponents in attack ads. And, the media will be too interested in whatever celebrity is currently going to rehab to actually discuss the real issues of this campaign season.

The Federal Reserve is the worst of it. A private corporation outside the law, no strike that too, it makes law. And, our representatives only want to make it stronger. People worry about the socialization of the banks. Are you kidding, who owns who?

The American people are leaderless. What person in their right mind would want the job! Those who know if you spend a lot and win office the rewards are enormous.

Charles Cory Spencer

Walla Walla

What are we to make or McMorris Rodgers' vision?

In response to U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers' piece in the U-B Sept. 5:

Our congresswoman fears the American Dream may be coming to an end. Then she says why: "Years of bad policy and broken politics." She means: Economic crisis, millions out of work, loss of household wealth, tripled federal budget deficit, huge national debt.

Rodgers then gives her partisan explanation for how these disasters came to be: Too much government spending, borrowing and bailouts. All from Republican Minority Leader John Boehner's playbook. What solutions (following Boehner) does our congresswoman favor? Answer: A balanced budget amendment to the Constitution and a constitutional amendment to limit federal spending. She wants smaller, smarter government.

Then she details a Republican project to coax folks via the Internet to speak up for the party line.

It's interesting how selective the details Rodgers and the party line give when telling the story of crisis. What's hidden: It was in the George W. Bush years that a large federal budget surplus was turned into a large deficit.

Major causes of this transformation: War in Iraq, much of the huge cost off-budget; two tax cuts reducing governmental resources and favoring high incomes. Large as these omissions are, there is a still greater distortion that Republican leaders share with nearly all commentators of whatever persuasion. This is the failure to quantify or even discuss the enormous cost ($700 billion annually) of what President Eisenhower called the "military-industrial complex."

What are we to make of Rodgers' vision of the nation's problem and her proffered solutions? My conclusion is she represents a growing but still minority view that people of all classes should be free of the posited smaller (weaker) government - the poor to fend for themselves for their own self-improvement, the middle and upper classes to avoid most taxes and pesky regulations simplistically seen by small government advocates as misguided, soft-headed measures aimed at "making life better for all of the national community."

Ray Norsworthy

Walla Walla

Comments

Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment