2 Wednesday, May 27, 2015 The Nugget Newspaper, Sisters, Oregon O P I N I O N Robert B. Reich American Voices Letters to the Editor… The Nugget welcomes contributions from its readers, which must include the writer’s name, address and phone number. Letters to the Editor is an open forum for the community and contains unsolicited opinions not neces- sarily shared by the Editor. The Nugget reserves the right to edit, omit, respond or ask for a response to letters submitted to the Editor. Letters should be no longer than 300 words. Unpublished items are not acknowledged or returned. The deadline for all letters is noon Monday. To the Editor: I would like to post a message regarding the ongoing discussion about the proposed paved trail from Sisters to Black Butte Ranch. I live in the rural Deschutes County area; for me to ride my electric scooter in Sisters or any city is a real treat. I have ridden my scooter several times in the past on paved trails at other locations. I am a disabled veteran; I’m always look- ing forward to an opportunity that would allow me some freedom to ride on paved trails as well as city streets. Not saying I would ride on that particular trail, but makes me wonder how many per- sons that live with disabilities in those areas that would certainly love to ride their scooter, wheel chair or tricycle between Sisters and Black Butte [Ranch] on a paved trail! However, it would be a fun and interesting jaunt — just need to be sure to charge the batteries before. It’s generally good for about 18 miles. It’s my understanding that the funds are available and the Forest Service has granted easement, so what’s the big fuss. Get ’er done! Tom and Lorraine Barrier s s s To the Editor: Residents in the Sisters community are generally concerned that carbon emissions from the burning of fossil fuels is leading to global warming. However, we need to be more than concerned. Take a look at one gallon of gasoline, weighing 6.25 pounds and containing 84 percent pure carbon. As that gasoline burns, each carbon atom combines with two oxygen atoms, now creating 19.25 pounds of carbon dioxide, still from the same gallon of gasoline. An average automobile traveling 12,000 miles each year, averaging 25.5 miles per gallon, produces 4.5 tons of carbon dioxide per year. Various publications list the ability of a tree to absorb carbon dioxide at between 15 to 50 pounds per year. That is such a small amount. See letteRS on page 23 Sisters Weather Forecast Courtesy of the National Weather Service, Pendleton, Oregon Wednesday thursday Friday Saturday Sunday Monday Mostly sunny Sunny Chance showers Mostly sunny Partly sunny Mostly cloudy 75/41 78/47 79/50 82/49 81/46 67/na The Nugget Newspaper, Inc. Website: www.nuggetnews.com 442 E. Main Ave., P.O. Box 698, Sisters, Oregon 97759 Tel: 541-549-9941 | Fax: 541-549-9940 | email@example.com Postmaster: Send address changes to The Nugget Newspaper, P.O. Box 698, Sisters, OR 97759. Third Class Postage Paid at Sisters, Oregon. Publisher - Editor: Kiki Dolson News Editor: Jim Cornelius Production Manager: Leith Williver Classifieds & Circulation: Teresa Mahnken Advertising: Lisa Buckley Graphic Design: Jess Draper Proofreader: Pete Rathbun Accounting: Erin Bordonaro The Nugget is mailed to residents within the Sisters School District; subscriptions are available outside delivery area. Third-class postage: one year, $40; six months (or less), $25. First-class postage: one year, $85; six months, $55. Published Weekly. ©2014 The Nugget Newspaper, Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. All advertising which appears in The Nugget is the property of The Nugget and may not be used without explicit permission. The Nugget Newspaper, Inc. assumes no liability or responsibility for information contained in advertisements, articles, stories, lists, calendar etc. within this publication. All submissions to The Nugget Newspaper will be treated as uncondition- ally assigned for publication and copyrighting purposes and subject to The Nugget Newspaper’s unrestricted right to edit and comment editorially, that all rights are currently available, and that the material in no way infringes upon the rights of any person. The publisher assumes no responsibility for return or safety of artwork, photos, or manuscripts. Can it be that America’s small businesses are finally waking up to the fact that they’re being victimized by big businesses? For years, small-business groups such as the National Federation of Indepen- dent Businesses have lined up behind big-businesses lobbies. They’ve contributed to the same Republican can- didates and committees favored by big business. And they’ve eagerly connected the Republican Party in Washington to its local busi- ness base. Retailers, build- ing contractors, franchisees, wholesalers and restaurant owners are the bedrock of local Republican politics. But now small businesses are breaking ranks. They’re telling congressional Repub- licans not to make the deal at the very top of big busi- nesses’ wish list: a cut in corporate tax rates. “Given the option, this or nothing, nothing is better for our members,” Liam Dono- van, the director of legisla- tive and political affairs at Associated Builders and Contractors, told Bloomberg Politics. Small businesses won’t benefit from such a tax deal because most are “S” cor- porations and partnerships, known as “pass-throughs” since business income flows through to them and appears on their owners’ individual tax returns. So a corporate tax cut without a corre- sponding cut in individual tax rates would put small businesses at a competitive disadvantage. The fight is significant, and not just because it rep- resents a split in Republican business ranks. It marks a new willingness by small businesses to fight against growing competitive pres- sures from big corporations. Big corporations have expanded their intellec- tual property, merged with or acquired other compa- nies in the same industry, and gained control over networks and platforms that have become industry standards. They’ve deployed fleets of lawyers to litigate against potential rivals that chal- lenge their dominance, many of them small businesses. And they’ve been using their growing economic power to get legislative deals making them even more dominant, such as the corporate tax cut they’re now seeking. All this has squeezed small businesses — under- mining their sales and prof- its, eroding market shares and making it harder for them to enter new markets. Contrary to the conven- tional view of an American economy bubbling with innovative small compa- nies, the rate at which new businesses have formed has slowed dramatically. Contributing to the drop was the deregulation of finance — which turned the biggest Wall Street banks into powerhouses that swamped financial markets previously served by regional and community banks. Many small businesses can’t get the financing they once got from state and local bankers. Over the past two decades, loans to small busi- nesses have dropped from about half to less than 30 percent of total bank loans. Meanwhile, small busi- nesses are feeling the same financial pinch the rest of us endure from big corpora- tions whose growing market power is letting them jack up prices for everything from pharmaceuticals to Internet connections. So the willingness of small-business groups to take on big business on its top legislative priority could mark the start of a political realignment. If small businesses were willing to ally themselves with consumer, labor and community groups, they could press for stronger anti- trust enforcement against giant corporations, as well as for breaking up Wall Street’s biggest banks and strength- ening community banks. Such an alliance might even become a power- ful voice for campaign- finance reform, containing the political clout of giant corporations. Even if the political realignment doesn’t happen soon, small businesses will eventually wake up — and could play a central role. © 2015 By Robert Reich Opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the writer and are not necessarily shared by the Editor or The Nugget Newspaper.