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Letters from Sept. 26, 2007
Port of Silverdale: Leave my tax dollars alone
Once again local government is running amuck. Now the Port of Silverdale wants to spend millions of your tax dollars to make Old Town Silverdale a better shopping experience. In a time when the county and schools are experiencing budget difficulties, they want to take millions of your tax dollars to aid and assist the wealthy business people who own land and businesses in the area that contains some of the most expensive real estate in Kitsap County. These businesses among others include lawyers offices, real estate offices and other professionals. Instead of making these businesses invest in their own interests, they have decided to enhance the character of Old Town, because they know best they are self-appointed experts in how your money should be spent. They want a garden paradise at your expense. Most people of this county do not shop in this area, cant afford to shop in this area and have no business interest in this area, but they want YOU to pay. They want more exclusive types of shops and restaurants, art shops, etc., most of which the average county resident cannot afford. While the common shopping district of Silverdale suffers from massive congestion from ill designed roads, poorly designed and timed signal lights, rampant construction in an area that has little left in space, these people want to take your money and use it for fluff. Our government has no legitimate purpose for this type of planning and it demonstrates clearly why we have a duty to limit their activities. The entire concept of the Port of Silverdale is weird. We have a recreational boat dock. Let them manage that and let them collect money from those who use it. Other than that, leave our tax dollars alone to be used for legitimate purposes. I am sick and tired of my tax load going up and up and up to support this kind of nonsense.
Letters on letters: Erroneous interpretations of history
Mike Vineyard, in his letter (CK Reporter, Sept. 22), has given several interesting but erroneous interpretations of history. I hope his errors are due to his lack of knowledge rather that an intentional desire to mislead us. I write to just a couple of the issues he raises.
Mr. Vineyard writes of the Civil War which came about because of the Republicans, who wanted to end slavery, and the Democrats who insisted on allowing slavery to continue.
The issue of slavery was a dominant concern in United States politics, especially from 1830 to 1860. Representatives from the slave-holding states wanted to continue and expand slavery; representatives from the northern states tried to curtail the spread of slavery, a few even wanting to abolish it.
The main political parties then were the Democrats and the Whigs; there were Southern Democrats and Northern Democrats, Southern Whigs and Northern Whigs, each party being divided on the issue of the expansion of slavery.
In the mid-1850s, the Republican Party began, and since it sought to restrict the growth of slavery, it was strong only in the North. After the Civil War, the Whig Party disappeared, leaving the Republican Party and the Democratic Party as competitors even until this day. To imply the Democratic Party of today is like the Southern Democrats of the 1850s is totally erroneous.
Vineyard cites the Civil Rights Act of 1964, stating that it had more Republican support than Democratic support. If one looks at the voting totals of the Senate and the House of Representatives, his numbers are correct but misleading. If the votes from the southern states are removed from the totals, it is clear that it was the Democrats who gave it far more support than the Republicans, for example Dem 45-0, Rep 27-5. (Rather than give a detailed breakdown, I refer you to the Wikipedia article on the Civil Rights Act of 1964, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Civil_Rights_Act_of_1964).
The impetus to pass that legislation came from the Democratic president, Lyndon Johnson, who was warned that doing so would lead to southern Democrats leaving the party; in the next few years, most of those representatives from the South became Republicans, and they are so today.
I choose not to write concerning the parallel Vineyard makes between the Civil War and the Iraqi War. That stretch is beyond my comprehension.