Hold their feet to the fire | AspenTimes.com

Hold their feet to the fire

Dear Editor:

I’m an old guy, 84, grew up during the Great Depression, served in the Army during World War II, worked in government for 32 years, and in private industry the rest of the time, including two sessions as a union coal miner.

My lifelong experiences have turned me into a staunch conservative, not a Republican, since too many of them have forgotten the meaning of the word. Goals I would subscribe to are: 1. less government, especially at the federal level, and 2. more reliance by people on themselves instead of waiting to be rescued by a governmental entity.

Our society is being strangled by excessive red tape and regulations. A large part of the cost of living today can be blamed on the environmental movement. Despite much good that came from the passage of the National Environmental Policy Act in 1969, good judgment has not been applied in its application and in ancillary laws and regulations created with the noble goal of protecting our environment.

Examples are: 1. Leaving the word “navigable” out of the final version of 1972 amendments to the Clean Water Act, which resulted in a paper blizzard at the federal level with minimal benefits, 2. Opening up the Rare and Endangered Species Act to cover, as an example, the elderberry beetle in California, and here in Colorado millions spent on saving the humpback sucker, which I would wager that 99 percent of the citizens could care less about. Private property rights have been taken from citizens as a result of the application of the latter law. Elimination of overlapping regulations and laws would save taxpaying citizens billions of dollars a year.

Stuart Udall opposed building Interstate 70 through Glenwood Canyon. His nephew, Mark Udall, has opposed off-shore drilling for oil, construction of new petroleum refineries and nuclear power plants. Henchmen, the Salazar brothers, share like philosophies, typical of environmentalists, who are usually opposed to anything constructive. Hopefully, voters will see through their recent hypocritical shift in policies on off-shore drilling.

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Short-term solutions to our energy problems include opening up our shores to drilling (not with the phony 50-mile limit being debated), drilling in barren Arctic regions such as ANWAR, and reducing the red tape required to get a nuclear power plant under way or the building of a new oil refinery.

Long-term solutions should develop clean-coal technology (our greatest resource), hydrogen, solar, wind, and all of the other possible, practical methods for sustaining our high standard of living.

Our only hope of restoring sanity to our political system is to elect a Republican president, and Republican majorities in the Senate and House. Then it will be our duty to hold their feet to the fire and insist they adhere to conservative principles.

Dick Prosence

Meeker

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