Blaine Dwyer: Meat, egg and dairy industry are fooling consumers

To the editor:
This coming April Fools’ Day can remind us that the meat, egg, and dairy industries have been playing us for fools year-round. Their more
remarkable hoaxes include “California's happy cows,” “free-range chickens,” and “humane slaughter.” All cruel lies.

Less amusing is the stuff they never talk about. Like the millions of male baby chicks ground up alive or suffocated slowly in plastic garbage
bags because they don’t lay eggs. Or the millions of hens crammed seven to a small wire-mesh cage, unable to move or spread their wings. Or breeding sows locked in metal crates, as their babies are castrated without anesthesia.

In the spirit of year-round April Fools’ Day, the meat industry has developed a whole dictionary designed to fool unwary consumers. Those
filthy cesspools of animal waste that overflow into our drinking water supplies and poison downwind neighbors with putrid odors? They call them "lagoons." And to make sure that kids don't confuse pig flesh on their plate with “Babe” or “Wilbur,” they call it "pork."

But, their fooling days are about done. Many of us are replacing animal meat, as well as dairy milk, cheese, and ice cream, with healthier nut
and grain-based products available in every grocery store.

Blaine Dwyer
Berlin

Rep. Paul Henle: Real tax change happens in Concord

To the editor:

So, how was Town Meeting this year? Did you manage to lower your property taxes? Probably not.

You might as well pound sand as try to lower your property taxes at Town Meeting.

The road to lower property taxes goes through Concord, not Town Hall. The Legislature has stacked the deck against your local government by downshifting onto local property tax payers millions of dollars of costs that the state government used to pay. If you want the gory details, there is an article on the website of the NH Municipal Association you can read titled “State Aid to Municipalities.”

Concord needs to reverse this trend and needs to do it now.

The good news is it can be done. The bad news is it will take serious tax reform and involve new taxes of the broad-based variety. If you want lower property taxes, the money must come from somewhere.

HB 415 (the NH Tax Shift Plan) was a bill before the Legislature this session. It would have lowered your property tax rate by $3 per thousand. That is $600 on a house assessed at $200,000. It was defeated because it used an income tax to stop the bleeding.

Are we light years away from making any meaningful change to how we raise revenue?

It is up to you. Change will not come to Concord on its own. You must demand it.

To learn more about the NH Tax Shift Plan, go to www.nhtaxshift.com.

Rep. Paul Henle
Concord Ward 2

Editor’s note: Rep. Henle discussed his tax plan with the Berlin city council.

Rich Mattos: Budgets cannot just rely on government grants

To the editor:

Apparently the mayor, city manager and council skipped Economics 101.

You must create a budget and not just rely on government grants!

The answer is not playing the game of threatening to raise the property taxes $4.57 per thousand and then at the end say we only had to raise it $2.25 per thousand because we worked so hard. Same game every year or two!

1. The city manager, and Councilor Lucie Remilard were both approached by me about two years ago with my suggestion of switching the street lights to solar power and LED bulbs, saving approximately $165,000 a year (that would almost pay for the Home Health care they closed). Mr. Wheeler said he would look into it. Really?

Meanwhile this past summer, the town of Lancaster switched its street lights over, saving the town taxpayers money.

2. We spend $195,000 a year for a library hardly anyone uses. We can't reduce that by half? Limited days and hours, hire some volunteers?

3. Do like any business in the private sector when trying to reduce your operating budget and perform pay freezes to any city worker making over $50,000 a year. After all, the average household income in Berlin (The Poorest town in New Hampshire) is $37,000 a year!

4. Have a complete outside audit performed on all city departments and compare to other towns and cities the same size.

5. The town of Gorham finally decided to show the public they have nothing to hide and now video tapes all town meetings. Why doesn't Berlin?

Rich Mattos
Berlin

Frank LaFerriere: Trump did tell the truth about some things

To the editor:

To quote Donald Trump in an interview he did with People Magazine in 1998: “If I were to run, I'd run as a Republican. They're the dumbest group of any voters in the country. They love anything on Fox News. I could lie and they'd still eat it up.”

I read with interest many of the comments on news boards after it was revealed that Trump was going to cut the Meals on Wheels, LiHeap, SNAP and other social safety net programs. Many of the Republicans commenting were crying that Trump betrayed them. One woman screamed that Trump promised he would protect them if they voted for him. That he lied to them. Really?

While Trump is wanting to cut these benefits? The taxpayers have now paid over $7 million dollars in Trump's weekend vacations to Mar-A-Largo. Taxpayers just paid an outrageous sum for his kids to go to Aspen this weekend to ski, with the security needed for them. It was also just revealed that the taxpayers have paid over $2 million so that members of Congress can have doughnuts and coffee.

As they say, be careful what you ask for, you just might get it and it may not be in the way you are asking for it. Trouble is now the rest of us have to also pay for your believing Trumps lies. Yes, Trump was right. You Republicans will believe any lie, and you are the dumbest voting group in the country. I hope you are all happy. But of course many of you will still defend him. Thanks, Republican voters. Good for you. You all sure have proven Trump's words he uttered about you.

Frank LaFerriere
Gorham

Vickie Roy: We need to raise awareness for epilepsy

To the editor:

March 26, is called Purple Day. For those that don’t know what that is, it's Epilepsy Awareness Day. Please wear purple for friends and relatives you know that have seizures.
For the past six to eight years I have written to the Governor’s Office to get a Proclamation to make Purple Day official in the state of New Hampshire. So far all the Governors we have had in the past have been good about it. This year I am beginning to wonder.
When I wrote I didn’t get any response so I called. The person I talked to kept asking if we were going to have a big fundraiser. I told her not that I know of. Basically I am trying to get the word out to more people about epilepsy.
I didn’t get much of a response from her. So I guess we have to wait and see.
I would really like to see more people advocate if you have epilepsy or you know people that have it.
Maybe less people would act so scared when they hear the words epilepsy and seizures.

Vickie L. Roy
Berlin