Image provided by: University of Oregon Libraries; Eugene, OR
About East Oregonian : E.O. (Pendleton, OR) 1888-current | View Entire Issue (Feb. 25, 2017)
Saturday, February 25, 2017
Founded October 16, 1875
KATHRYN B. BROWN
Opinion Page Editor
Regional Advertising Director
Business Office Manager
EO MEDIA GROUP
East Oregonian • The Daily Astorian • Capital Press • Hermiston Herald
Blue Mountain Eagle • Wallowa County Chieftain • Chinook Observer • Coast River Business Journal
Oregon Coast Today • Coast Weekend • Seaside Signal • Cannon Beach Gazette
Eastern Oregon Real Estate Guide • Eastern Oregon Marketplace • Coast Marketplace
OnlyAg.com • FarmSeller.com • Seaside-Sun.com • NorthwestOpinions.com • DiscoverOurCoast.com
will do to
You might not even notice it.
we must do what we can to mitigate
A low, distant rumble may be all
its most fatal effects. Schools in
Eastern Oregon feels of the most
tsunamis zones should be rebuilt
destructive natural disaster in this
on safer ground. Key economic and
emergency buildings in Portland,
Cascadia. A massive earthquake
Salem, Seattle and Vancouver
should be made
off the Pacific coast
registering above 8.0
despite the high
on the Richter scale.
price tag of doing
The quake itself
will likely leave a
disaster zone many
But we cannot
hundreds of miles
rely on government
to make such
of people will be
dead and missing.
especially at a time
in Oregon when
for at least a
Coast will be left
the state budget
is already trying
to climb out of a
of Interstate 5 in
sinkhole of its own.
both Oregon and
Washington will be damaged.
rely on a specific Cascadia reality.
As we learned in a five-part series Scientists believe the plate shifts
every 250 years or so, and we’re
published this week in the East
50 years behind schedule. The best
Oregonian, the short term effects in
guess is a 30 percent chance the
our area will not be so immediately
massive quake is triggered in our
catastrophic. But the lights will go
lifetime. There will be a tremendous
out. Cellphones will be inoperable.
Service stations may soon run out of difference in the result depending on
where, when and how it hits.
gasoline. Grocery store shelves will
But we can learn to depend on
have difficulty staying replenished.
While the initial quake won’t
We can learn lessons from
topple our region or its buildings,
Minamisoma, New Orleans and San
the impact will be felt for at least a
Francisco. We can be personally
prepared. We can talk with our loved
Hundreds of thousands, if not
ones about emergency preparation
millions of people in the Northwest
will be homeless. And the economic and options. We can have a plan to
meet if communication systems go
hub of the northwest will be
down. We can and must keep an
devastated. The influx of people
emergency food and water supply,
to and through our area will be
and include flashlights and candles
and emergency radios. Even if
The series, reported deftly by
the ‘big one’ doesn’t shake in our
EO staffer Jade McDowell, was
lifetimes, lesser emergencies will
an attempt to get past the fear
surely come our way.
and anxiety. The quake itself is
We can be ready, come what may.
terrifying, and as a state and region
Unsigned editorials are the opinion of the East Oregonian editorial board of publisher
Kathryn Brown, managing editor Daniel Wattenburger, and opinion page editor Tim Trainor.
Other columns, letters and cartoons on this page express the opinions of the authors and not
necessarily that of the East Oregonian.
Threats cause Murdock
to abandon his principles
The headline of George Murdock’s
Feb. 11 column cut to the chase.
Murdock himself is for immigration but
nervous that the president could retaliate
if our state is for it. As a result our
county would be shorted needed funds.
Commissioner Murdock lists some
programs that will suffer or need to
be canceled outright. He says being
fully funded faces a roadblock. Federal
funding is vital but tenuous. Workers
would have to have it carefully
explained to them why they’d be without
The reason: We counties and states
dare not tick off the President because he
can decide to withhold federal funds. Be
very afraid of him. The state of Oregon
could suffer from presidential retaliation.
Commissioner Murdock seems to be
saying if counties and states tiptoe and
whisper, Mr. Trump will allow deserved
funds to come through. Don’t play
chicken with the president.
Did past presidents also punish
individual counties by withholding
congressionally authorized funds?
What a micromanaging nightmare!
Is Congress easily seduced into
approving funds so these moneys can be
gerrymandered at executive whim?
If we are to be very afraid of Mr.
Trump, are we also to be very afraid of
offending our county commissioners?
Will they withhold a graveled road here,
a supported park there, if one of them
becomes piqued at some nonpartisan
sentiment we express?
The most disturbing of comments
our commissioner made is that it’s OK
to be moral when all is going well, but
if threatened, abandon principles. I
realize he has an important task. County
funding is essential. So is clear-eyed
Hermiston schools bond
much too expensive
The Hermiston School District is
ramping up for another large bond issue.
The one in 2008 runs for 29 years; this
proposal would also run for 29 years.
Various school taxes are now in
excess of 50 percent of your total
property taxes. About a year ago this
bond issue was reported to be at 53 cents
per $1,000 of assessed value. There have
been several reports since, each climbing
to the one reported Feb. 16 at 90 cents.
Hermiston has some of the fanciest
schools in Oregon now. This is not a big
city. Vote no on new taxes.
Obama oversaw much
bigger market gains
Before the Republicans get giddy
with glee about the recent stock market
surge, let’s remember that on Election
Day in 2008, the Dow was hovering
around 6,900. When Obama left office, it
was over 18,000. All the while the GOP
claimed that he had nothing to do with
Either the president has the power to
affect the market or he doesn’t. You can’t
claim now to give Trump credit when
the same courtesy wasn’t granted to
Obama. I hope the surge stays upward,
but if you go back decades, you’ll notice
that the market has performed better
under Democrats, so don’t hold your
David Gracia, Hermiston
Fight Trump, not his voters
A few days ago, I blithely tweeted
First, stereotyping a huge slice
a warning that Democrats often sound
of America as misogynist bigots is
patronizing when speaking of Trump
unfair and impairs understanding.
voters. That provoked a vehement
Hundreds of thousands of those Trump
supporters had voted for Barack
“Sorry,” Jason tweeted back, “but
Obama. Many are themselves black,
if someone is supporting a racist
Latino or Muslim. Are they all bigots?
ignoramus who wants to round up
Second, demonizing Trump voters
brown ppl and steal my money, I’m
feeds the dysfunction of our political
Nicholas system. One can be passionate about
Kristof one’s cause, and fight for it, without
“This is normalization of a hateful
contributing to political paralysis
ideology and it’s shameful,” protested
that risks making our country
“My tone isn’t patronizing,” one person
Tolerance is a liberal value; name-calling
responded. “It’s hostile. Intentionally. I won’t
isn’t. This raises knotty questions about
coddle those who refuse to recognize my
tolerating intolerance, but is it really necessary
“What a great idea!” another offered. “Let’s to start with a blanket judgment writing off 46
percent of voters?
recruit a whole bunch of bigoted unthinking
lizard brains because we
could possibly ‘WIN!’”
as “the enemy of the
And so the comments
American people,” that is
an outrageous overstep.
But suggesting that
about President Donald
Trump voters are enemies
Trump — but also the
of the people is also
that worried me in the
The third reason is
first place. I fear that
tactical: It’s hard to win
the (richly deserved)
over voters whom you’re
animus toward Trump is
spilling over onto all his
Many liberals argue
that Hillary Clinton won
I understand the
the popular vote and
vehemence. Trump is a
that the focus should
demagogue who vilifies
be on rallying the base
and scapegoats refugees,
and fighting voter
suppression efforts. Yes,
but Democrats flopped in
minorities, who strikes
Congress, governor races
me as a danger to our
and state legislatures.
national security. By all
Republicans now control 68 percent of
means stand up to him, and point out his lies
partisan legislative chambers in the U.S.
and incompetence. But let’s be careful about
If Democrats want to battle voter
My hometown, Yamhill, Oregon, a farming suppression, it’s crucial to win local races —
including in white working-class districts in
community, is Trump country, and I have
Ohio, Wisconsin and elsewhere.
many friends who voted for Trump. I think
Yes, a majority of Trump voters are
they’re profoundly wrong, but please don’t
probably unattainable for Democrats, but
dismiss them as hateful bigots.
millions may be winnable. So don’t blithely
The glove factory closed down. The
give up on 63 million people; instead, make
timber business slimmed. Union jobs
arguments directed at them. Fight for their
disappeared. Good folks found themselves
struggling and sometimes self-medicated with votes not with race-baiting but with economic
methamphetamine or heroin. Too many of my pitches for the working and middle classes.
Clinton’s calling half of Trump voters
schoolmates died early; one, Stacy Lasslett,
“deplorables” achieved nothing and probably
died of hypothermia while she was homeless.
cost her critical votes. Why would Democrats
This is part of a national trend: Mortality
repeat that mistake?
rates for white middle-aged Americans have
Yes, the Trump camp includes some racists
risen, reflecting working-class “deaths of
and other bigots. But it’s a big camp, and
despair.” Liberals purport to champion these
let’s not be so quick to affix labels on every
people but don’t always understand them.
member of a vast group.
In Yamhill, plenty of well-meaning people
This column may offend everyone, from
were frustrated enough that they took a
Trump enthusiasts to liberals who decry them.
gamble on a silver-tongued provocateur. It
wasn’t because they were “bigoted unthinking But my message is simple:
Go ahead and denounce Trump’s lies and
lizard brains” but because they didn’t know
bigotry. Stand firm against his disastrous
where to turn, and Trump spoke to their fears.
policies. But please don’t practice his trick
Trump tries to “otherize” Muslims,
of “otherizing” people into stick-figure
refugees, unauthorized immigrants and other
large groups. It sometimes works when people caricatures, slurring vast groups as hopeless
bigots. We’re all complicated, and stereotypes
don’t actually know a Muslim or a refugee,
are not helpful — including when they’re of
and liberals likewise seem more willing to
otherize Trump voters when they don’t know
Nicholas Kristof grew up on a sheep
There are three reasons I think it’s
and cherry farm in Yamhill. A columnist for
shortsighted to direct liberal fury at the entire
The New York Times since 2001 he won the
mass of Trump voters, a complicated (and,
Pulitzer Prize in 1990 and 2006.
yes, diverse) group of 63 million people.
and I have many
friends who voted
for Trump. I think
wrong, but please
don’t dismiss them.