To the Editor:
Everyone who drives along I-35 between Covell Road and Sooner Road on a regular basis is aware of the fact that trash routinely blows out of the semi-trailer trucks carrying trash from the transfer station to the landfill, causing a safety problem for drivers and leaving the highway littered with trash.
This condition still exists despite Title 8 Chapter 8.32.110 of the Edmond ordinances, which requires all vehicles carrying trash to be “so constructed or loaded as to prevent any of the load from dropping, sifting, leaking, blowing or otherwise escaping,” and that such vehicles be equipped with a securely fastened cover. Violation is a Class B offense with a $249 fine upon conviction.
City officials were told about the problem last December, several times thereafter and again last month at a City Council meeting. Reporter James Coburn wrote an excellent account of that council meeting, the problem and the reaction of city officials in The Sun on Sept. 13.
But the trucks are still spewing trash.
Beyond the safety and litter problem, I-35 is Edmond’s portal to the world. Thousands of drivers each year take away an image of our city based on what they see as they drive through on the interstate. For too long, that image for many of them has consisted at least in part of huge semi-trailer trucks spewing trash.
Chapter 8.32.110 should be enforced. An editorial in The Sun and continued news coverage of the lack of enforcement would be in the best tradition of American journalism. Edmond voters should be told when their city government is doing its job and when it isn’t.
To the Editor:
Ethiopian Jews fly into Israel
Edie Roodman, who serves as the director of the Jewish Federation of Greater Oklahoma City, recently gave a presentation on the African Jews of Ethiopia and their flight into Israel. The presentation took place at the Federation’s Oklahoma City Office, and Roodman explained that Ethiopian Jews, who are known as “Falashas,” believe that they are the descendants of the son born to the Ethiopian Princess Sheeba and fathered by King Solomon’s palace and the Jewish princes who accompanied her on her journey back to Ethiopia after she left Solomon’s Kingdom.
Those princes married local Ethiopian woman, the Falasha’s maintain, and created a Jewish community in that African nation. But Roodman reported that scholars in Israel believe that the Falashas are in fact the descendants of the lost tribe of Israel known as “Dan.”
For higher costs, go ahead and restrict exports
On his recent trip to Warsaw, Secretary of State John Kerry heard arguments for expanding U.S. natural gas exports to Poland. Polish officials made the case that letting liquefied natural gas flow from the United States to Poland would benefit European economies as well as the environment.
When it comes to lifting restrictions on gas exports, U.S. officials shouldn’t need convincing. If policymakers want to continue denying our economy the benefits of free trade, they should be the ones to explain why.
The most unscrupulous lobbying technique
Last week I described the abuse by which various area government entities have been designing construction specifications so as to limit competition and award a specific vendor. This drives up the cost to you the taxpayer. You may read that article at http://tinyurl.com/paaqa2y.
Bringing fairness to both children and felons
Let me go out on a limb here and make a statement that is categorically true in all places, at all times.
Seeking a ‘more perfect Union’
A recent opinion column needs a response (“Govern Locally and Protect Liberty” by Rep. Lewis Moore, Edmond Sun Opinion, Dec. 7, 2013).
Readmission to hospitals accounts for majority of health care costs
The holidays are a time of family, friends, traditions and gratitude. When a loved one has a terminal illness, the season can also mean added stress, fatigue, and financial burdens. Most families would not want to spend the holiday season in and out of an emergency room, yet nearly one in five Medicare beneficiaries is readmitted to the hospital within 30 days of release. According to the New England Journal of Medicine, this translates to $17.4 billion in Medicare spending on patients whose return trips could have been avoided.
HealthCare.gov: A Bad First Impression
It’s often been said that you never have a second chance to make a first impression. During the launch of HealthCare.gov more than two months ago, the majority of Americans experienced a terrible first impression of the Affordable Care Act and its ability to deliver what the president had promised since its passage.
Good or bad, it is incredibly difficult to change a person’s opinion or feeling on something. As noted pundit Peggy Noonan said during ABC’s “This Week,” “Even programs can get reputations. You can get a sense that something isn’t working.” The initial problems with the website, including its inability to handle high traffic, error messages, long wait times and reported security issues, is a perfect example of a poor first impression. Now it continues to cause many to distrust the website.
One of my constituents recently shared, “I am afraid to even use the website because my personal information might get hacked.” Another said, “Even if the site would work properly, I do not agree with Obamacare.” I’ve received many other emails and stories from people who distrust the federal government’s ability to run and manage healthcare. In fact, according to a recent Gallup poll, 52 percent of Americans still think the law should be modified or repealed.
Editor stranded in ice storm experiences truest form of humanity
A foolish drive left me alone with my car stuck on a steep hill of a back road, covered in ice with temperatures falling into the low 20s. But as is the case with any horror story, heroes emerged to aid the helpless.
Downtown development could bring north, south sides together
Peter Ackroyd is a British historian who has written extensively about the city of London. One of his most recent works, “Thames: The Biography” details the extensive role that that waterway has played in the history of the United Kingdom.
The word Thames is one of the oldest names recorded in England, Ackroyd reports, and may owe its origins to the ancient Celtic word for running water. Julius Caesar constructed a bridge over the Thames in 54 BC to facilitate his invasion of the British Isles, and it was on the banks of the Thames at Runnymede where King John was forced to sign the Magna Carta in 1215.
When Queen Elizabeth II commemorated her 50 years on the British throne several years ago by leading a regatta down the Thames, she was part of a thousand-year-old tradition of British monarchs sailing on that waterway.
HEY HINK: Government advice goes against centuries of examples
Of all the harebrained advice I’ve heard doled out over the years this has to be the dumbest: Sign on the dotted line and “don’t worry about the price tag.” This is precisely the message our federal government is belching out to America’s young people to persuade them to sign up for Obamacare. It reminds me of the Three Stooges episode where Moe tells Curly not to worry about the explosion because “dynamite always blows down.” The image of a grasping federal bureaucracy enticing young Americans to sign onto the most aggressive power grab in this country’s history while murmuring “don’t worry about the price tag,” is almost too far-fetched to believe. Unfortunately, it’s all too true.
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