Opinion » Mail

July 27, 2005

Corrections • Where's the Beef? • Make a Run for the Border, eh? • Blueing Tips • The Messenger


In last week's article about frisbee golf, Philip Janquart wrote that the Bogus Basin disc golf course was the only the second in Idaho. There are, in fact, numerous courses around the state. The Bogus Basin course is the second in southwest Idaho.

Where's the Beef?

Last week when I read your magazine, I couldn't find the small article that I always look for each week about how many brave young American servicemen and women lose their lives weekly in this fucked-up war of George Bush's (BW, News, July 13, 2005). this isn't the first or second time. What's up? We can't get any information from our local TV stations or the local newspaper which my brother works for. Last week, I counted only two or three pages that didn't have a stupid ad on them. Also, where was the True Crime article? You know, there are only about two writers that are usually worth reading and that's Bill and Ted. The rest are really just fill-in. We the people deserve better! I know the casualty report takes up so much space, but get rid of an ad or two to show us how many are being killed weekly.

-Tim Butler, Boise

Editor's Note: We don't like cutting anything, and I assure you, we would never cut something as important as the Iraq War Casualty report without a good reason. Our reason in this instance was because our News Editor Nicholas Collias was working up until the last minute finishing his article "Hanging the Messenger" regarding the election-eve Chuck Winder phone fiasco.

make a run for the border, eh?

While Katy Dang's article (BW, Rec, "Crossing The Border," July 13, 2005) was quite informative on the great trip to beautiful Canada, I feel that the article is missing a few things. I'm not saying that it was an intentional mishap or even one that the writer may have even taken into consideration, but as a son of a Canadian citizen, I know there are a few things that Americans would most likely like to know before they travel to Canada. While Katy discussed the issue of the few and sporadic banks located in towns in Canada along the way to your final destination, one thing was left out. Canada takes American money everywhere! Pretend for a moment that you cross one of their 24-hour borders at, say, 2 in the morning. Half an hour later, you come across a gas station that is open, but you don't have any Canadian currency. No problem. They'll honor your American change and give you an exchange rate-minus a service charge, of course. The fact is, they are just plain more understanding up there. Another tip for some younger travelers: Drinking age in British Columbia is 19 and it is 18 almost everywhere else in Canada. Popular with college students up north of course, but remember, a DUI is a felony up there, so drink responsibly.

-Joe Christie,


Blueing tips

Thanks for the great article (BW, "How to Turn Your Red State Blue," July 20, 2005) I'd like to offer ten rules of thumb for turning Idaho blue:

1. Organize the Democratic Party, not something else. ACT will never replace the party for winning elections.

2. Become a block captain or a precinct captain or support them. These are the most important jobs in the party. Besides, it's fun to get to know your neighbors!

3. Organize your own neighborhood, not Wisconsin. You'll make a lot more of a difference.

4. (The first 80 percent rule.) Listen 80 percent. Talk 20 percent.

5. Know your values. Talk about your values. You'll be amazed how many "conservatives" share them.

6. Give ownership. People are dying for a party owned by them, not by politicians or special interests.

7. Be humble. We don't have all the answers. But we are always committed to serve and to work for a better future.

8. (The second 80 percent rule.) At least 80 percent of what you say should be positive. No more than 20 percent criticism of that other party or the esteemed persons associated with it.

9. Don't spout grand government solutions. It's arrogant and it makes people feel like you think they can't take care of themselves. Great progressive gifts come in small packages.

10. Offer hope and a positive vision for the future. History shows that hope and progress come from progressive movements, not conservative ones.

-Gary Allen,

Chairman, Idaho Progressive Caucus, Boise

the messenger

After having deliberately not picked up a copy of your notoriously shallow rag for months-Boise's equivalent of the equally pathetic Mountain Express-I noticed in your July 20 issue that you now have taken it upon yourself to offer angry rebuttals to reader letters you don't agree with-notably, the one you insisted on inserting regarding Mitchell P.'s "The Trouble With Ted" letter! After making several salient points that you arrogantly ignored-especially about America's very partisan-oriented trade-union membership dropping from 43 percent to just 8 in only 50 years-you then had to assail him for "spewing Ann Coulter-like rhetoric." Whether you realize it or not, by childishly doing that you more than proved the point Mitchell P. was making about the Democratic Party now being nothing more than a "radical fringe" minority ... with the Boise Weekly as one its demented, old mascots!

-John Pluntze,


Editor's Note: Sticks and stones will break our bones, but words will never hurt us.