Letters to the Editor
August 27, 2008 · Updated 8:07 PM
The digital divide
I would like to encourage every individual to consider the value that a new library would add to this community. A vote for the library bond on May 20 is a vote for an increasingly vibrant and progressive community.
It is a vote for one of the most basic of American values; that all Americans should have equal access to information. Libraries are the cornerstone of that access.
And contrary to the opinion of some that libraries are obsolete or a luxury, they have never been poised to play a more critical role in society as the nature of information becomes increasingly digital, creating what some call the Digital Divide. This divide separates those who are able to utilize and benefit from the Internet and those who cannot. That is the critical issue. Internet access has become the integral link between individual and local community resources and global resources of information and knowledge.
The current library falls pathetically short of providing adequate terminals for a school district the size of Arlington, especially when considering current growth projections. Our population is already four times what it was when the existing library was built.
I know that many people never use the library. They typically say if they want a book they just go buy it. But the point is that the library is for exploring our world and stumbling on books and movies and music that we dont even know about until we find them. The computer terminals allow anyone to explore and access a catalogue that includes resources located in the entire Sno-Isle system. Access to the Internet enables one to research a subject, find an appropriate book and ultimately, to borrow it from any library in the country if it is not in the local system.
I was recently diagnosed with cancer and that is how I found so much information that has been invaluable to me. It is not a huge stretch to say that the access to information that a library provides has the potential to be life-saving.
In closing, I would like to suggest that an adequate community library puts some meat into the American promise of equal opportunity and that our troops have fought for this ideal many times in many places. Please support this American ideal in your own way by voting for this modest bond measure (at a cost of only $14 per $100,000 of assessed property value per year).
Lets all do our part to make America great and vote Yes on May 20.
The library is an important resource for all of us here in Arlington. Its probably the most utilized city building in Arlington the traffic that the library receives on a daily basis astounds me.
If you want to see a microcosm of this wonderful community spend a couple hours there. You will see young and old, from every walk of life in this wonderful resource center perusing through the stacks, doing research on the Internet or attending a meeting on any given day of the week.
Please vote for this new library. Its a sure bet investment that benefits everyone. Our community needs a new library more then ever before.
Now its time
I have been around Arlington since 1975, and remember the old library at McLeod and Third Street. We grew out of that years ago and built the new one.
Now that one is the old one and its time to build another, larger library for the good of more citizens. Also, remember this is a two-for-one deal, because the old library will become a Community Center.
That way we have a community center building out by the airport area and one in Old Town.
Please be sure and vote on May 20 or before (as I have).
Richard (Dick) Butner
How many people?
In a recent letter to the editor I warned of the law of unintended consequences when it came to changes made for the sake of fighting global warming. If you were paying close attention to the news, you would notice that we are already starting to see some of these consequences. Food prices have soared as grain crops are diverted to biofuels as directed by government law in some countries and influenced by subsidies in others. Land once used to grow food is now being used to produce ethanol. The law of supply and demand has kicked in raising prices. Food riots have erupted in Africa and Asia.
We are seeing very real problems arising from our attempt to address a perceived, by some, problem that evidence is mounting to tell us may not even be real or appreciably influenced by human actions.
A recent plot of global temperature overlaid with atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration shows that while carbon dioxide has steadily increased, the global temperature has decreased over the past ten years. If you look back hundreds of millions of years in geologic history you will see that the Earths temperature has been on a roller coaster ride long before the automobile and coal fired power plants. Where is the correlation to human produced carbon dioxide?
A letter to the editor last week claimed that 90 percent of all scientists agreed with the human caused global warming theory. I dont know how one can go about calculating something like that but undoubtedly some of those who do agree are poor scientists. Take Paul Ehrlich, a fervent global warming proponent, who has been incorrectly predicting the demise of the planet since 1970. For a rather amusing compendium of his and other scientists and politicians environmental disaster predictions that havent come true, see the Nation Center for Policy Analysis (a non-partisan organization) website.
Dont discount the money factor in science, either. There are more than a few researchers influenced by the flow of grant money. No man made warming equals no grant money. Just wait until our politicians try to take a cut of the action. If you think carbon credits have intrinsic value Ive got a bridge to sell to you.
For me Ill listen to scientists like Richard Lindzen, the Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Atmospheric Science at MIT. He concluded that: 1) The data currently represented as consensus, even if correct, do not imply alarm. alarm is the aim rather than the result, and (2) The scientific community is committed to the maintenance of the notion that alarm may be warranted. Alarm is felt to be essential to the maintenance of funding. The argument is no longer over whether the models are correct (they are not), but rather whether their results are at all possible. One can rarely prove something to be impossible.
How many people are you willing to see starve because you bought An Inconvenient Truth, a propaganda film, hook, line and sinker?
We have all received our ballots for a new Arlington Library and many ballots have already been returned. This is just a gentle reminder to everyone who has not yet voted, to please, please remember to do so.
When we forget a meeting or an event, the impact is usually pretty limited mainly our own personal embarrassment. Forgetting to vote for the library can impact our whole community.
Two years ago, we came within less than 30 votes of getting the 60 percent required positive votes to build a new library. I just bet that at least that number of ballots were sitting forgotten on desks, tables and countertops of people who really intended to vote. Dont let that happen to you.
When I see a reporter from The Marysville Globe appear, I know our story will accurately be told. Tom Corrigans article on May 7 beautifully tells all of the residents bordering the new Marysville Food Bank what it will be, is informative and is a Channel of Your Peace.
Thank you to all of you that attended the Groundbreaking Ceremony of the Marysville Food Bank on May 2.
Did you see it as I did? Not one of the important officials who worked so relentlessly and patiently to get this project off to a wonderful start took credit for their efforts. Father (Rev.) Horaciao V. Yanez merely turned the palms of his Holy hands upward and tilted his head toward heaven, when he was singled out as the one who dreamed of this community serving, volunteer-run building that feeds our hungry friends during tough times.
Just as important is the fact that no one mentioned fences or boundaries, an example of rust that in Marysville, maybe, it is possible church, food bank, mobile home parks and apartments will walk quietly around each other and respect each others property.
Now, we can enjoy the progress, pray for the hardworking construction crews safety and read about it in future updates in The Marysville Globe.
When I requested copies of the next issue of The Globe, Eda answered with such efficiency and Kim in Circulation delivered 60 courtesy copies to Twin Cedars Mobile Home Park at 7 a.m. Wednesday, May 7, accompanied by a beautifully written letter from our Park Manager, Esther Rollins, each newspaper was hand delivered by our resident Virginia.
Georgia Ann Spiger