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Letters to editor of the Pahrump Valley Times

Reader irritated by lack of help on voice recording

I have been trying for three days to call VEA and all I get is some moron on a recording with menus that don’t work. You absolutely can’t talk to a customer service rep. Because the “moron” says your call can’t be transferred, try again later.

Plus they posted my payment to the wrong account. Now I have to go down there and hopefully get to talk to someone with an IQ higher than a cuckoo bird to get this straightened out. Some people with disabilities can’t get to the office, and can’t talk to someone on the phone. Sounds a bit discriminatory to me. If you can’t run your business like it should be run then get someone in there who can.

Evelyn M. Dempsey

Maybe it’s time to choose our leaders differently

A bloated bureaucracy and complex international relations demand leadership that is equal to the task. Unfortunately, there is no litmus test for choosing a president and the best qualified person may not gain office.

The Electoral College was conceived as a way to level the playing field between smaller states with fewer voters and those more densely populated. Ultimately, however, the person who will occupy the peoples’ house becomes a political decision. I there a way to lower our risk?

Candidates for the presidency must meet certain qualifications, such as American born, not a convicted felon, never been diagnosed with a mental disorder, and some other essential requirements.

What if they had to complete an application, pay a nonrefundable fee of $5,000 and include a resume? The filing fee would be used to cover related administrative expenses. The documents would be submitted to a presidential review committee in both chambers, and the process could move ahead much as it does for nominees for other high-level government positions. Once in office the new president would nominate his or her VP, also to be cleared for duty by congressional vote. In the interim, as third in line for the presidency, the speaker of the house would remain on call for an emergency.

Just imagine. If a majority vote of Congress became the method by which future presidents were chosen, what would we lose or gain by discarding the old system? No more political rodeo, read that, an end to presidential campaign rallies. Televised debates with less trading of insults and greater insights to a candidate’s platform. Less incentive for contributors seeking favor and influence. No need for the Electoral College. And by selecting the best qualified candidate based on education, professional experience and other factors, party affiliation becomes pretty much irrelevant. Keep in mind that the president speaks for all Americans … An incumbent who wants to reapply for another four-year term will be motivated to perform at the very highest level.

To put this in perspective, we voters elected those who represent us in the Congress. They enact the laws that govern our very lives. They allocate the tax dollars that fund all agencies of government. They, not the president, have the power to declare war. And despite what we’ve seen lately, Congress does have oversight of many presidential actions. Furthermore, Congress can impeach and remove a president who violates the law or conditions of his office.

By any measure, the legislative branch is the highest authority within our form of government. So choosing the most qualified individual for chief executive and commander-in-chief of the armed forces, isn’t really a stretch. And we note that in the late 18th century it was the newly-formed Congress of the United States, not the voting public, who chose our first president. If a substantial number of Americans showed interest, you can bet that heads on Capitol Hill would turn, smiles would appear and much thought would be given to working out the details.

Twenty-twenty eyesight is considered normal vision. We are left to wonder if in the year 2020 it will be possible to see less distortion and chaos in American politics.

Ralph Bazan

Veteran chides town for neglecting American flag

The Pahrump DMV building for the past three years that I know of, has been flying Old Glory all night long without a light.

Why would a town with flags all over the place flying proudly let this take place? A town with a lot of vets who have served proudly for that flag.

I need help in getting a light put on that flag or have it taken down. It is shame that a government building is doing this. Contacts have been a dead end so far and you would think that this should have been taken care of long ago.

Ron Schoeb

U.S. Navy veteran

Maybe people are not clear on what socialism entails

With all due respect to my fellow Americans, most of us simply don’t seem to know that a “liberal/progressive” is not the same thing as a “socialist.”

This includes the Democratic Party presidential candidates as well as the members of “The Squad” such as Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Ilhan Omar.

A true “socialist” is someone who wants all of the businesses and workplaces to be owned and controlled by “the state” or “the government” or “the workers” or “the people” and not by individuals and groups of people who run them for profit as we have here in the USA. Democrats who want our federal government to spend more on social programs to help the lower and middle classes as they struggle to survive and pay their bills are not “socialists.” They are “liberals/progressives” who want our market-based capitalist economic system to become more humane by having our federal government spend more to help the lower and middle classes.

Let’s use a little common sense here. How can someone (including Bernie Sanders, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and Ilhan Omar) be a true “socialist” when they do not advocate for and fight for replacing our market-based capitalist economic system with a socialist economic system?

Stewart B. Epstein

P.S. By way of background, I am a retired college professor of sociology, social work, and psychology who still very much enjoys helping people as well as informing, teaching, and educating others when I believe that I have something to offer to them. That’s why I write these letters.

I was very proud to have taught at West Virginia University and Slippery Rock University.

Addicts need a plan for recovery to be successful

Leaving treatment for addiction without a plan is like going on a road trip without a map. It is very important to have a set plan before leaving treatment.

The plan should be realistic and the recovering person should be able to follow it without getting discouraged. This plan should include both structure and accountability. It should also have goals that are reachable and reasonable. This helps the recovering person feel accomplished and productive.

The plan does not have to be filled with things you don’t typically want to do. It should incorporate some fun things as well, so they don’t get burnt out. After a long day of being productive maybe they would like to go to the gym or the beach, that’s completely fine.

The quickest way to relapse after treatment is a person having way too much time on their hands. Where getting drunk or high filled this time before they went to treatment, they should now fill this new-found time with a solid plan in a structured environment. Following this plan can help eliminate the stress and anxiety that comes up when going back into the real world after completing treatment. This will greatly increase a person’s chances of being successful and remaining clean and sober.

For more information on having a plan after treatment, go to https://www.narconon-suncoast.org/blog/leaving-treatment-without-a-plan-is-like-going-on-a-road-trip-without-a-map.html. If you are in need of a referral to a treatment center, call us at 877-841-5509.

Shauna Krout

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