Page 4 of 30 Nov 2007 Issue of Kalispell Daily Inter Lake in Kalispell, Montana

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Kalispell Daily Inter Lake (Newspaper) - November 30, 2007, Kalispell, Montana A Page a4 the daily inter Lake Friday november 30, 2007opinion a Ray of Hope is the real Deal for nearly a decade Bob and Peggy Christensen and a band of faithful supporters have operated a Ray of Hope As a Haven for those who fall through the social services safety net. Most recently they be added a homeless shelter to the operation taking in those who have fallen on hard times. One by one they help the Down and out restart their lives. When it comes to Public service the Christensen Are True servants and tireless advocates for the homeless. Of you re looking for a Charity to support this Holiday season consider a Ray of Hope. They need food clothing and Money to make ends meet at the shelter located at 46 fifth Avenue West. Give them a helping hand. Community spirit is also alive and Well in Marion where locals pitched inter Lake editorial in to renovate the dilapidated Marion school playground. The Parent teacher organization held fundraisers to bring in More than $5,000, and the school got an additional $5,000 from Flathead electric cooperatives Roundup for safety Grant program. Parents and other Marion residents held a cleanup Day and repainted weathered play equipment. A crumbling Tennis court was transformed into an outdoor basketball court. Businesses donated picnic tables and other items. There Are plans for a track and upgraded softball Field. The grassroots Effort has boosted Community pride0 in Marion and is a prime example of the Good that comes out of working together. Even Christmas is not immune to the demands of the liability insurance Industry. Santa and mrs. Claus traditionally have Ridden on a fire truck in the Columbia Falls night of lights Parade. But at tonight a Parade the Christmas couple will have different transportation a liability issues have prevented them from hitching a ride on a City fire truck. We suppose that Means that other fire truck traditions such As celebratory parades for state Champion sports teams also Are precluded by the liability lawyers. Columbia Falls plans to make the Best of the situation however with a Surprise transport arranged for or. And mrs. Claus. And night of lights still promises to be a fun time for All. Bush a Stem cell was wrong i have a Friend who dedicated her first Book to her husband a without whom this would never have been years later when the husband was gone she used to fantasize about tweaking her dedication a to my husband without whom this Book would have been done five years i thought of her As the Bush administration claimed credit for a Bona fide breakthrough in biology. Two groups of scientists in Wisconsin and Japan have found a Way to reprogram Ordinary skin cells so they behave Uke embryonic Stem cells. So it May become unnecessary to use embryos in this cutting Edge research. When the Good news was announced the White House had the Gall a an Oval office alternative for chutzpah a to claim the Victory As theirs. A this is very much in Accord with the presidents vision from the get go a said policy adviser Karl zins Meister. Without the slightest hint of irony he suggested that their Stalwart opposition actually fuelled the scientists Success. Next thing you know the president will nominate himself for the Nobel prize in Medicine. Let us pause and review Stem cells 101. What scientists Are trying to do is take an Ordinary cell from the human body and persuade it to become say a heart muscle cell or a brain cell or a liver cell to fix whatever ails us. The researchers did not study embryonic Stem cells because they wanted to run a recycling Center for leftovers from in Vitro fertilization clinics. Nor did they have a passion for wedge issues. But the embryo could do what they were still unable to do cause Ordinary body cells to act like Stem cells. This breakthrough was not the presidents a vision from the get go or any other go. First of All the Bush administration bet on the wrong horse a adult Stem cells. Second i the researchers have gotten to step two without step one. They needed human embryos to learn How to do this without human embryos. still need embryos for some time As both a Benchmark and a Way to judge whether Stem cells from skin Are effective and Safe. Not Only did the a a vision impede the science the administration also slowed it by starving funding and scaring off researchers. So James Thomson the biologist whose work forms the bookends of this research offers this urn dedication a my feeling is that the political controversy set the Field Back four or five now he and other scientists Are muting that political controversy. Pro life republicans have every reason to breathe a sigh of Relief. The idea that a leftover Frozen embryo had greater moral status than your aunt with diabetes did no to Wash with the general Public. It was a losing Battle for conservatives who Are used to directing the culture wars. It even split pro life politicians. Sen. Orrin Hatch ended up arguing with the absolutists a people who Are pro life Are also pro life for existing democrats on the other hand May breathe a sigh of regret. The Stem cell controversy gave pro choices an iconic image of their enemy someone who put the embryo uber ally a. It gave progressives a poster girl in Nancy Reagan a and a poster boy in Michael j. Fox. Stem cells were to the left what partial birth abortion was to the right a Way to Frame a Touchy Issue and look like the reasonable Center. The issues that Range around the Stem cell debate will still be with us and with politicians. There remain More than 400,000 Frozen embryos languishing in if clinics. As for the relative Worth of an embryo and an a existing life there Are Likely to be ballot measures next year to give a fertilized egg the Legal status of a human being. Indeed the Sleeper Issue of this Campaign May be the one found in a youtube video called Quot Libertyville abortion there prolife protesters at an abortion clinic Are asked what punishment should be meted out to a woman who has an abortion if it becomes illegal. Their answers a i done to a a in be never really thought about candidates wont get away so easily. Nevertheless this is a moment when anyone who prefers a cure to a Battle cry should celebrate. There is still a Long Way from reprogramming a skin cell to treating a disease. But we be come to think of scientists As people racing ahead of us leaving behind huge moral potholes. This time science May resolve the quandaries it created so this Success is dedicated to the scientists who freed themselves from the clutches of politics. But not to the president without whom Well this too would have been done years earlier. A 2007 Washington Post writers group Quot Eureka the one it re Sci fuel % Collet Woi Ball Eom. Picture Quot planning Board violated open meeting Law legislators say letters to the editor Mesba rebuttal gets challenged i read or. Melton a nov. 17 rebuttal of my earlier letter to the editor and i Felt i should respond. First or. Melton states that the a pm tuba does not provide liability coverage for school according to the Western states insurance company web site a Western states is proud to be a partner in the property and liability insurance plan with the Montana school boards Mesba second or. Melton tells us a Elizabeth Kaleva the attorney retained by the Bigfork school District to conduct an investigation for that District has not been employed by nor has had any other affiliation with Mesba since november 2004�?� apparently or. Lelton is unaware that Elizabeth Kaleva is associated with the National school Board association and that the Mesba is the state affiliate. Further she is a Board member of the Council of school attorneys Cosa for the National school Board association. According to the National school Board associations web site the goal of Cosa is a leadership in Legal advocacy for Public Onsba Council of school attorneys is a membership organization of 37 affiliate state councils Over 3,000 attorneys nationwide who work to improve the practice of school Law and prevent lawsuits against Public schools Tempha Sis mine. Not exactly an impartial unbiased Choice. Finally i am glad or. Melton and i agreed that Mesba administers the privately funded school workers compensation program. A Richard Funk Kalispell does no to anyone have no in vocabulary regarding the Wolford fiasco i would like to comment on the article in the paper involving the dilemma the planning Board is experiencing relative to Access problems. Anyone with a room temperature i q. Can see that we Are already exceeding optimum traffic capacity at present in that area so any increase no matter How Well planned should be unacceptable. Does no to anyone have no in their vocabulary0 these so called a a Impact fees being imposed on developers Are Only window dressing. The real Impact of All this so called development is severe Long lasting costly and mainly unaddressed. Our City government is unbelievable. Their acquisition of the downtown Wells Fargo building defies logic and their Hodge podge annexation of islands Miles outside of the City limits naturally is followed by their Effort to fill in the i shudder to imagine the Long term a a impacts this will have. In closing i must comment on the recent City Council elections when the officials were disappointed that Only 9 percent turned out. My take on this is that 91 percent disagreed with the Way our City and county governments Are representing their constituents and feel helpless to change it. Of which i am one. A Howard Stockwell Kalispell by Verdell Jackson Jerry o Neil and Bill Jones at the nov. I meeting of the Flathead county planning Board Gordon Cross the acting chairman and Jeff Harris Flathead county planning director showed a blatant disregard for the taxpaying citizens of the Flathead Valley and the Montana Constitution. In fact this meeting was conducted contrary to legislative intent which was written into Montana state Law title 2, chapter 3 a the legislature finds and declares that Public boards commissions councils and other Public agencies in this state exist to Aid in the conduct of the Peoples business. It is the intent of this part that actions and deliberations of All Public agencies shall be conducted openly. The people of the state do not wish to abdicate their sovereignty to the agencies which serve furthermore Mca 7-1-4143 states entity shall adopt rules for conducting the meeting affording citizens a reasonable Opportunity to participate prior to the final after reviewing the Law and consulting with Mark mat Tioli of the Montana attorney general a office it is Clear to us that citizens were not Given a reasonable Opportunity to participate in this meeting during their deliberations. Many citizens attended the meeting expecting to give comment on a previously considered setback proposal because this was announced during the last meeting and subsequently printed in the newspaper. However the topic for deliberation was a Surprise setback proposal which Gordon Cross had written and was introducing that night. A a a setback for the purposes of discussing this meeting is a government Rule which would be imposed on private property owners prohibiting the building of any Structure within a specified distance from a designated River. Cross did not provide the Public in attendance with the written materials under consideration and made no arrangements for audio amplification equipment to allow the Public to hear the deliberations. The Board members sat in front of the room conversing in a conversational tone that could not be heard by the audience. Cross compounded these violations of Montana Law and custom by informing the audience that Public comment would Likely not be allowed depending on whether the Board adopted the proposal. Cross did accept presentations from Wade Fredenberg of the . Fish and wildlife service and Mark Deleray Montana fish wildlife and Parks. Both aggressively promoted setbacks by homeowners As the solution to decreasing fish populations. They did not mention the role of Montana fish wildlife and Parks in mismanaging the fisheries resource in the first place. For example the Salmon run which once saw millions of fish run up the Flathead River to spawn was wiped out by the unwise planting of Lysis shrimp in Flathead Lake by the fish biologists who Are supposedly protecting our interests. They Are now charging full steam ahead with plans to Poison lakes and streams which contain non native fish populations. This particular option is not the Best and May create a situation where we May not be Able to catch fish with our kids and Gran kids during our life time. These Public employees then inappropriately joined the Board members in their deliberations leaving the Public without a voice. The private property owners of the Flathead Valley Are very concerned about water Quality and fish. Pollution from seasonal Forest fires and government operated sewer treatment facilities is a huge threat to our Rivers. Whereas government owns the vast majority of the property in Flathead county this appointed planning Board seems intent on controlling Only the Small percentage of land under private ownership and used for residential habitation. Jackson of Kalispell represents Senate District 5. O Neil of Columbia Falls represents Senate District 3. Jones of Bigfork represents House District 9. All three Are republicans. Write to us the daily inter Lake welcomes letters signed by individual readers in the Flathead Valley and surrounding area we publish All original letters of 300 words or less unless they Are libellous not of general interest or in bad taste. Longer letters will be published As space allows. Letters May be edited for length clarity taste and to eliminate personal attacks. We do not publish poetry. Send letters to the daily inter Lake Box 7610, Kalispell it 59904 by email to or by fax at 752-6114. Please include a Telephone number and address so the letters authenticity can be verified. Call the editor at 758-4447 to confirm receipt of your letter. Guest opinion policy Ellen Goodman

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