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Letters to the Editor

We encourage letters on topics of direct interest to the Hudson Valley but will accept contributions on any subject.

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Nominates “FAKE” as word of the year

I nominate FAKE as the word of the year. Sure we have all heard the term Fake News many times.

We get that and it is our duty to verify what is real and what is Fake in the news.

Today in the Mid Hudson News there are two stories about Fake.

Darby O'gills was just closed down for serving alcohol to under age minors and as is his claim the kids have undetectable Fake IDs.

Numerous area businesses are being duped by customers passing Fake $20 and $100 dollar bills.

Technology is a double edged sword. When we devise a way of determining what is Fake and what is real technology almost immediately comes up with a way to get around the system. On the bills most retailers use a pen to check and now the new technology can produce bills that pass the pen test. In the Fake ID case the state refuses to allow bar and pub owners the equipment to determine Fake IDs and drivers licenses and instead they shutter the doors and put owners and employees out of work and possibly out of business. Retailers lose the money but the bar and pub owners and employees lose much more. We rarely ever hear of any penalties these under age kids suffer for using the Fake IDs but we convict the establishments and the retailers suffer the financial losses. These days we must worry about our identities being stolen and our credit cards being Faked and it is very sad to say but technology is lagging far behind in all of this.

How about we nominate the word of the year for 2019 to be FAIR!

Gary Lothrop
December 7


Climate Change

The news about the climate has not been good.  Recent reports by climate scientists are clear that to avoid the worst impact of climate change, society must dramatically reduce carbon dioxide emissions within the next few years. Reports from the National Climate Assessment and Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change specifically mention carbon pricing as a way forward, and the most recent Nobel Prize in Economics was awarded for William Nordhaus’s work developing a carbon pricing model.  A recent editorial in the Times Herald Record states “The cost (of inaction) is in the tens of trillions, much higher than the cost of making the changes and adjustments that might postpone the deadline. But that assumes our politicians are wise enough to understand the problem, which most in charge today are not, and courageous enough to lead the effort, which even fewer are.”

In fact, some of our politicians have just taken the giant step of proposing legislation to address the high social and environmental costs of the use of fossil fuels by introducing a bill that will put a fee on carbon.  On November 27, House members … introduced a bill that would impose a $15-per-metric-ton carbon fee on the oil, gas and coal industries, with all revenue returned to the public to limit the pain of higher fossil fuel costs.  With the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act, these Members of Congress have taken the unprecedented bipartisan step to reduce greenhouse gas emissions while creating American jobs, unleashing innovation, and improving public health.

They deserved our thanks and support for making this important effort which can drive down carbon pollution more than any prior national legislation or executive action.  I applaud our own Representative Sean Patrick Maloney who has responded to the challenge of climate change with a proposal of his own and urge him to now throw his support behind the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act. 

It all adds up to now being the right time to take bold action, and I strongly urge local and national political leaders as well as the public to learn more about this bill and make it a reality.  Waiting is not an option.

Olga Anderson
Co-founder, Citizens Climate Lobby Mid-Hudson South Chapter (NY-18)
December 4


Who is the Real Enemy ?
    In the 2018 midterm election a record turn-out of 113 million voters made their voices heard at the ballot box. In Georgia and Florida some races were too close to call and required vote recounts as per their respective election laws. Also all post-November 6th legal absentee and provisional ballots needed a tally and together with the recount would determine the outcomes in these two states. Trump recklessly tweeted voter fraud even though there was no evidence of it. He wanted no recount; he maintained the election results should stand, without the recount, giving slim victories to the Republican candidates. The vote recount is in accordance with the rule of law. This is electoral democracy in action. 

    Trump's tweet demonstrates his disregard for the law; another attempt, now becoming commonplace, to undermine democracy. Trump dismisses the constructs of our democracy including the constitutional constraints on executive power as barriers to his authoritarian rule of governance. I am sure on inauguration day he would have preferred a coronation with its regal pomp and circumstance instead of taking the sworn Presidential oath of office. 

    Trump frequently declares the free press is the 'enemy of the people' when in fact he should look inward and gaze in the mirror. The people's real enemy would then be revealed. 

John Lown
December 4


Thank you from Assemblyman Brabenec

I would like to thank all the voters of the 98th district for re-electing me to another term as your State Assemblyman.  When all the votes were counted, I won by 63% of the vote, almost 27 points and 10,000 votes over my opponent, making this one of the most successful races in the Hudson Valley.  I am honored and humbled by your confidence in me and it has been the honor of my life serving you for the past four years. I will proudly continue to fight for you and be your voice and advocate.  I will vote for, and also propose initiatives, to lower our tax burden, fix infrastructure, pass comprehensive ethics reform, defend our law enforcement officials, first responders, and veterans, and  help our farmers succeed. It is also a top priority of mine to continue providing top notch constituent service to all the residents of the district. Finally, I want to thank my staff along with numerous friends and volunteers that put in many hours over the past year spreading our message of positive reform, It is because of your efforts that this race was a total success. If anyone ever has a question, problem, or concern, and you think I may be able to help, please call my office at 845-544-7551 or e-mail me at brabeneck@nyassembly.gov.  Wishing everyone has a happy holiday season and a very happy, healthy, and successful 2019!

Karl A. Brabenec
Assemblyman - 98th District
November 30


Antonio, Jen, and Juan will Change Our Nation’s Path

I write to express my deep appreciation to the voters of our region who made a statement that has been heard around the world.

For for the first time in the history of NY Congressional District 19, going back to the creation of this district in 2012, a Democrat will represent us in the House of Representative in Washington, DC. That Democrat is Harvard-educated Antonio Delgado. I have known Antonio for well over a year and can honestly say that he’s one of the most hard-working, brightest, and most community-oriented people I have ever known. Antonio is going to figure out what needs to be addressed for the good of the people. And then he’s going to get it done.

The people of New York Senate District 42 have spoken and they have chosen a truly progressive and accomplished leader in Jen Metzger. The election of Jen is part of a broader outcome: The shifting of the New York State Senate to having a genuinely progressive and Democratic majority. This is a game changer. With Jen in office, we can expect groundbreaking advances when it comes to such things as public higher education, environmental protection, and healthcare. Jen epitomizes what the phrase “by the people, for the people” represents.

And for the first time in the history of Ulster County, someone from the town of Plattekill is going to represent us at the highest level of office in terms of county law enforcement. I have spent hours knocking on doors with Juan Figueroa over the past two election cycles. The reason that Juan comes across as brave, honest, and genuine is this: Juan is brave, honest, and genuine. In Juan, we can fully expect a representative who will crack down on corruption and who will stand for the foundational principles of the United States.

Antonio, Jen, and Juan are the real deal. And we all know it.

Please accept my deep appreciation to these brave compatriots for standing for public office during a dark time in our nation’s history.

Yes we can. And yes we did.

Here is to our shared future.

Glenn Geher
New Paltz
November 8



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