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About The daily Astorian. (Astoria, Or.) 1961-current | View Entire Issue (Jan. 22, 2015)
D AILY A STORIAN
Founded in 1873
THE DAILY ASTORIAN • THURSDAY, JANUARY 22, 2015
It’s time for new forestry laws
to engulf our communities
ways and public water sup-
and the air we breathe. It’s
plies in many locations. It’s
time for change.
LAURA SELLERS, Managing Editor
Oregon allows use
BETTY SMITH, Advertising Manager
have no problem making a
of dangerous herbicides
banned elsewhere. It has
CARL EARL, Systems Manager
just rake in big extra prof-
JOHN D. BRUIJN, Production Manager
it from Oregon’s outdated
spray setbacks from homes
DEBRA BLOOM, Business Manager
laws. Oregon has eliminat-
and schools. And there is no
One is dead, one in intensive evidence that routine use of
ed most harvest taxes —
SAMANTHA MCLAREN, Circulation Manager
treatment, the rest with serious aerial forestry herbicide
would provide $40 million
ongoing health issues. It took spraying is even needed.
affected counties. The
seven months to get any Oregon
merous, more affordable alterna- past employment and income ben-
government agency to even release tives exist. Simply changing rotation H¿WV IURP ORJJLQJ KDYH GZLQGOHG
what poisons they were sprayed length from the current 40 years to WR QHDU ]HUR$XWRPDWLRQ DQG ZDJH
with. And that list turned out to have 300 years reduces herbicide “need” reductions in forestry industry have
EHHQ IDOVL¿HG 7KHUH¶V VRPHWKLQJ DV ZHOO DV RWKHU VLJQL¿FDQW FRVWV RI UHGXFHGWLPEHUEHQH¿WVWROHVVWKDQ
timber harvesting by 85 percent. It’s 1 percent of Oregon gross domestic
very wrong here.
product. Tourism has replaced forest-
time for change.
One man told us he has bur-
We know now also that there is ry in contribution to economics and
ied 12 deer, two sheep, and several no minimum safe level of herbicide employment — outdoor recreation
dogs that died around
use — extremely low SURYLGLQJ ¿YH WLPHV WKH MREV DV WKH
his house, from a “wast-
levels cause neurologi- timber industry. Even global warm-
ing disease.” They could
cal damage that can even ing impacts say it’s time for change
resident Obama’s well-delivered State of the Union speech eat all they wanted, but
affect future generations. — carbon sequestering value alone,
Oregon allows the use of from letting trees grow, amounts to
Tuesday covered everything from sending an astronaut to
shrank to skin and bones
herbicide mixes whose 20 times the income gained from
Mars to making the Internal Revenue’s tax code fairer for the and died. He sighed, then use of
cross-impacts have nev- logging.
added, “And I have the
dangerous er been tested. National It’s time for major reform in Or-
middle classes and simpler for businesses.
forests have banned aeri- egon forestry regulations. Now. Pro-
But does his wide-ranging must be a priority, said Obama, who same wasting disease. herbicides
I’ve lost 45 pounds,
al herbicides because of posed legislative action to “notify
optimism — “the shadow of crisis promised tax incentives up to $3,000 can’t work, and need a
high numbers of miscar- people of spraying” is totally inade-
KDV SDVVHG´ ² UHÀHFW WKH UHDOLW\ RI a child to help working parents. We cane just to get down our banned
riages in surrounding ar- quate. It merely shifts our attention
America in 2015?
welcome this initiative.
elsewhere. eas. But not Oregon. It’s away from the enormousness and
seriousness of the issues. The mag-
$ \HDU ODWHU QR ¿QHV
time for change.
We believe it does. But the real
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nitude and clarity of new science re-
question is whether partisan bickering a ‘must-have,’” the president said,
sistance for medical costs or inability the short harvest-rotations it permits, garding these issues is already bring-
in Congress will stymie true progress highlighting families where two
to work, and local doctors refusing and the routine use of herbicides it ing strong class-action risk to all of
working parents are a necessity. “It’s to treat them. And Oregon’s “Right allows, cut wood production in half, our jurisdictions and agencies if we
The 44th president was elected time we stop treating childcare as a to Farm and Forest” law deprives HFRQRPLF EHQH¿W RI IRUHVWV E\ IDLOWRDFW$QGWKHEHQH¿WWRDOO2U
just as the U.S. economy tanked. In side issue, or a women’s issue, and Oregonians of our constitutional percent, causes siltation of streams egon of making major improvements
six years, Obama has presided over treat it like the national economic right to any legal action against tim- and reduced salmon runs, and cre- in management of our forests is huge.
Tom Bender of Sustainable Archi-
ber companies in such situations. DWHV VLJQL¿FDQW ODQGVOLGH KD]DUGV WR
a remarkable recovery effort that priority that it is for all of us.”
This was not just one single event. surrounding communities. It allows tecture and Economics in Nehalem is
has seen job growth, less reliance on
Repeating his pride in the value Other spraying issues have occurred slash-burning that is now virtual- one of the originators of sustainable
foreign oil with more emphasis on of community colleges’ twin roles at Triangle Lake, above the city of ly banned elsewhere, permitting its economics that shows more effective
wind and solar power, plus progress in educating high school graduates Wheeler, and poisoning of water- mutagenic and carcinogenic smoke ways of doing what we do.
on bringing outsourced jobs back to and workforce members seeking
the United States.
retraining, Obama said a free college
‘We are a strong, tight-knit family education would allow graduates
who has made it through some very to enter the work world without the
By FRANK BRUNI
hard times,” Obama said, quoting a albatross of student loans.
New York Times News Service
hardworking Minnesota couple in the
Obama also highlighted a
eaving aside all of the
statistic worth repeating: 10 million
other good arguments both
The president repeatedly noted Americans now have health insurance
that “middle-class economics works,” thanks to his Affordable Care Act.
for and against it, I have one
but warned of the need for further
It was disheartening, however, that big problem with the proposal
actions. These include:
no sooner had the president left the for free community college
• closing tax loopholes that allow the chamber, the cameras rolled on the that President Barack Obama
super-rich to avoid paying their share;
GOP reply, in which tea party-backed recently outlined and described
• boosting the minimum wage to freshman Joni Ernst pledged that now anew in his State of the Union
give hardworking Americans at the Republicans are in power they will
address Tuesday night.
lowest end of the pay scale a better snatch access to health care away
It’s awfully late in the game.
chance to move ahead;
from newly covered Americans.
I don’t mean
• mirroring other advanced
To her enormous credit, Ernst
countries in guaranteeing paid is a lieutenant colonel in the Iowa
AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin
have moved on
maternity and sick leave;
Army National Guard and has served it earlier in his
Education Secretary Arne Duncan speaks about the administration’s
• strengthening unions to give overseas. Her support for veterans — presidency. I
priorities for education at Seaton Elementary in Washington, Jan. 12.
workers a better voice.
like Obama’s — was commendable. mean that our
college degrees are wrong more than 15-year-olds in countries around the
And — astonishing in 2015 — But her signal that she and her cohorts focus on get-
world — are done. American kids
half the time.
Obama said, “This Congress still plan to turn back the clock on the
tend to perform in the middle of the
needs to pass a law that makes sure a president’s remarkable achievement education can-
the Benenson Strategy Group for heap.
woman is paid the same as a man for in providing health insurance to so not be separat-
The America Achieves report,
America Achieves, revealed some
doing the same work.”
many uninsured Americans was ed from, or sup-
cold-eyed realism amid that un- looking at PISA results from 2003 to
plant, our focus
warranted optimism. More than 70 2012, which is when the tests were
Providing affordable childcare nothing short of heartbreaking.
on making sure
percent of parents expressed the last administered, had a bit of good
that they’re prepared for it. And we worry that their children’s chances news. While American kids from
have a painfully long way to go in of achieving a middle-class lifestyle middle-class families haven’t mark-
would be diminished if their grade- edly improved their international
College is somehow tidier to school education didn’t become standing in math and science over
recent years, kids from poorer fam-
talk about; I talk about it quite a bit more challenging.
myself. It’s an attractive subject for
They’re right. We need to raise ilies have done precisely that.
Poverty may well make educa-
several reasons. There’s a particular standards. That’s in fact what the
mythology and romance to college, Common Core is ideally about, and tional advancement much harder,
a way in which it’s synonymous that’s why the education secretary, but doesn’t prohibit it. If we take
with the passage into adulthood and Arne Duncan, under harsh attack, re- the right steps — including more ag-
with a lofty altitude of competence, mains wedded to a certain amount of gressive recruitment and rewarding
of exemplary teachers
he question is not whether
On another world topic, Obama NQRZOHGJH DQG LQWHOOHFWXDO UH¿QH testing. High standards
and the continued im-
America leads the world — echoed a warning that has been sounded
plementation of higher
It’s totemic. And it comes with accountability are no
on this page since our newspaper group KDQG\ PHWULFV VSHFL¿FDOO\ GDWD standards at all.
standards — we can
He provided his own answer with examined climate change in an award- showing that the acquisition of a col-
help kids at every rung
The goal is to lift
lege degree translates into various children from all income
eloquence. “We lead best when we winning series in 2006.
continuous of the
of these need
combine military power with strong
Pointing to rising temperatures,
diplomacy, when we leverage our he quoted the Pentagon warning that
ing,” Schnur, who has
we look to, and lean on, college as a of success with higher
power with coalition building, when climate change is an immediate risk way to increase social mobility and education. Their fail- and must
advised the Obama ad-
we don’t let our fears blind us to the to our national security. “We should push back against middle-class wage ure to complete high-
ministration on educa-
opportunities that this new century act like it.
tion, told me. “There are
er education isn’t just
great examples of what
That’s important context for not D IXQFWLRQ RI ¿QDQFLDO continuous
“The best scientists in the world
works, such as quali-
Obama described the breadth of are all telling us that our activities
of college but also for a new re- stresses, though those
investment. ty preschool and early
U.S. global involvement.
are changing the climate, and if we
learning for low-income
port, “Expectations and Reality,” are primary reasons. Ac-
Among highlights was his do not act forcefully, we’ll continue E\ $PHULFD $FKLHYHV D QRQSUR¿W ademic readiness factors
long overdue promise to close the to see rising oceans, longer, hotter RUJDQL]DWLRQ WKDW GRHV HGXFDWLRQDO in.
In the State of the Union both last
Guantanamo Bay prison. This is a heat waves, dangerous droughts and research, policy development and
Jon Schnur, the executive chair- year and the year before it, Obama
stain on our nation — and terrorists ÀRRGV DQG PDVVLYH GLVUXSWLRQV WKDW advocacy. I was given an advance man of America Achieves, said that called for universal preschool (to no
WKHUH¶V D VLJQL¿FDQW GLIIHUHQFH LQ avail). Some studies have shown that
exploit its continued existence as a FDQWULJJHUJUHDWHUPLJUDWLRQFRQÀLFW copy.
It demonstrates, for starters, that graduation rates between students disadvantaged children start falling
recruiting tool. “It is not who we are,” and hunger around the globe.”
while hope may spring eternal, it who need remediation after they’ve behind even before that point.
said Obama, who has prohibited the
We share his view that Congress springs in error where college is enrolled and those who don’t. The
The moral is this: Education is
torture that his predecessor condoned. must not endanger the health of our concerned. Using a survey of hun- failures of elementary, middle and a continuous concern and must be
a continuous investment, cradle to
dreds of parents and looking at col- secondary schools shadow them.
In a global tour of sensibly chosen children by failing to act.
,YRU\ 7RZHU ,I ZH GRQ¶W UHFRJQL]H
priorities, Obama said the U.S. would:
With the United States pledging
and act on that, our reality will never
• stand up to Russian excesses to double the pace at which its
H[SHFW WKHLU NLGV WR ¿QLVK IRXU\HDU when PISA tests — which compare meet our expectations.
against the Ukraine and elsewhere;
carbon pollution is cut, even China is
• end the embargo against Cuba;
committing to limit its emissions.
• continue pressure to ensure Iran
“I am determined to make
• U.S. Rep. Suzanne Bonamici 3KRQH)D[
• State Rep. Brad Witt (D):
doesn’t develop a nuclear weapon;
sure American leadership drives
• install better protections against international action,” Obama pledged.
ton, D.C., 20515. Phone: 202- 225-
• U.S. Sen. Jeff Merkley (D): 313 + 6DOHP 25 3KRQH
Finally. The science cannot )D[ 'LVWULFW +DUW 6HQDWH 2I¿FH %XLOGLQJ :DVK :HE ZZZOHJVWDWH
• seek congressional approval for the be ignored and we commend the RI¿FH 6: 0LOOLNDQ :D\ ington, D.C. 20510. Phone: 202-224- or.us/witt/ Email: rep.bradwitt@
use of force against the ISL terror group. president for taking the lead.
6XLWH %HDYHUWRQ 25 3753. Web: www.merkley.senate.gov state.or.us
STEPHEN A. FORRESTER, Editor & Publisher
By TOM BENDER
RUW\¿YH SHRSOH ZHUH
poisoned in 2013 by
multiple illegal sprayings
of their homes — not forest
lands — with aerial forestry
herbicides in Curry County.
is clear and bright
But will obstructionist Congress
waste two years?
From the cradle to Ivory Tower
What role should
the USA play?
Obama’s priorities on the world
stage went under the microscope
Where to write