The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

March 1, 2014

Readers' Forum 3-1 | Progressives' rants are entertaining

Submitted by Readers

JOHNSTOWN — More thoughts about the “bizarro” world of progressives:

-- Our illustrious secretary of state declares that climate change is as big a threat to the world as terrorism, poverty and weapons of mass destruction. Climate changes constantly. That’s why there is spring, summer, autumn and winter.

-- Progressive politicians complain about business leaders who make millions but don’t say a word about movie and TV stars and singers who are millionaires. Maybe because the stars and singers are contributors to the Democratic Party?

-- Importing oil from Middle Eastern regimes that despise the U.S. is fine, but oil exploration in this country and building the Keystone XL Pipeline to import more oil from Canada are horrible.

-- Republicans have been continuously using dirty tricks to harm the pure-as-the-driven-snow Democratic Party since the Clinton presidency, according to a letter writer in the Feb. 24 edition.

-- Many progressives care more about some arcane insect or bird than about unborn babies who are murdered in the womb.

-- They rant that anyone who disagrees with President Obama is a racist. Soon they will be screaming that anyone who disagrees with Hillary Clinton is a sexist.

If they didn’t hold so much power in America today, they really would be more entertaining than an episode of “Seinfeld.”

Gregory M. Gyauch


Failure to comply casts cloud on city

What’s going on at City Hall? The leaders are flagrantly violating the law. Recently, council voted in executive session not to accept my application for the open position on council. The Sunshine Law states that all voting must be done in public sight.

My petition to stop sewage pressure testing, which isn’t required by the Department of Environmental Protection, was signed by 476 outraged residents. Council didn’t accept the petition into the records. Apparently it doesn’t exist.

I have filed a right-to-know request, asking to see the amount of sewage rental fees the city has collected from 2009 to present. The Office of Open Records made a final determination, ordering the city to show me the records. The city hasn’t complied.

Another right-to-know request has been filed, asking the city to show documentation of smoke/dye testing that was done on every home in Johnstown, as stated by city engineers.

I have filed a deemed denial appeal with the office of open records, because the city has not responded.

When one encounters extreme difficulty in accessing public records, it leads one to suspect wrongdoing.

The DEP has ordered that downspouts must not empty into the sewage system. This hasn’t been completed. Of course there is sewage overflow – the rain water is going into sewage lines. I propose again – replace street sewage lines, eliminate the downspouts, then check overflow rates.

Anger and frustration is increasing daily because of the exorbitant sewage mandate and the fact that council will not talk to the residents.

Residents deserve better than being ignored by council.

Charlene Stanton


A free America doesn’t mean freedom

Twenty-five years ago, I moved from my Johnstown home to the Bible Belt. I purchased a front-bumper license plate that read: “Buckle-up with Jesus.” Over the years, that $5 trinket has cost me more than $5,000 in multiple seat-belt violations, fines and court costs.

I have five full pages on my permanent record. I’m a career, habitual seat-belt offender.

In a free America – free to choose, free to accept or free to decline – we are not free to smoke pot and to not wear a seat belt.

Legalize the recreational, nonuse of seat belts instead and pass me another medical Budweiser, please.

Russ Olenick

Rafford, N.C., formerly of Johnstown

Wozniak concerned with safe roads

After reading the editorial in The Tribune-Democrat criticizing Sen. John Wozniak for backing the transportation bill (“Our senator is out of touch; does he fathom highway bill’s effect?”), I feel compelled to write.

I was very happy that Wozniak was a backer of the transportation bill that went into effect Jan. 1.

When I cross a bridge, I want to know that it is a safe bridge. Bridges have been known to fail.

Prices may go up on some things, but I would rather see prices go up than see bridges go down.

If anyone from The Tribune-Democrat knows a better way to raise money, let others know about it. And if anyone feels they can do better things for our state, then run for office.

Donna Beltz